Starting Design Phase. New Construction. All input appreciated. - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 19 Old 08-14-2012, 02:58 PM - Thread Starter
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Hello everyone. I have been reading and trying to learn what I can from these forums. There is so much information out there it makes my head spin. There are so many knowledgable people on this board, both DIYers and pros. I would appreciate a little input from y'all on the initial physical design for my proposed HT.

First off, this is going to be new construction. I originally was going to have a single car garage attached to the house and a two car garage adjacent, connected via breezeway or small room. Then I thought that if I attached all three to the house I could build above it, using that space for a dedicated HT. Plans for the home are still very initial but because I want to make this part of the plans, I felt that it was important to get the overall idea of the room so I can make sure to work it into the plans.

As I said, it will be over a three car, divided bay garage and storage rooms, possible over laundry also. The overall size of the space available for this room is 30' x 40'. I know that is a huge space, but I want a WOW room, even though I have a peanut butter budget. I certainly do not mind doing a good bit of the labor myself, if I have an idea of how to do it.

I have attached a few pictures of an initial plan I drew up. You will notice that I have used loveseats instead of theater seating. I like that these give the room a more comfortable feel, although, it may change.

The screen size I have started with is 12' wide. I really was not sure what size would be appropriate.

I have allocated 3 feet behind the screen for speakers and whatever else may need to go behind.

Each riser is 12" high, but this could easily change.

The overall height of the room can be as high as 12 ft, with each rise having 11 ft and 10 ft of height, respectively. There again, this can change.

I included quick measurements on one of the pictures just for reference.

Thanks!




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post #2 of 19 Old 08-14-2012, 03:10 PM
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It looks like you have some really cool ideas for this space.

My recommendation would be to cut the size way back. I know you said that you like it but 30' x 40' is HUGE and as a result will require a HUGE budget to do correctly (soundproofing, acoustical treatments, etc.) Just the GOM for fabric covered walls alone would likely cost more than my entire build.

Then you've also got to deal with finding speakers that can fill that space. And a 12' wide screen isn't going to be big enough for someone sitting 35' away.

I say put your money towards a quality smaller room instead of an enormous room where you will have to cut back simply because of the cost to build such a space.

Check out "The Cinemar home theater construction thread" for an excellent example of a perfectly sized home theater. As this build shows, you don't have to have a room the size of the Taj Mahal to have a "wow" space.

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post #3 of 19 Old 08-14-2012, 03:20 PM
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+1

You could use part of that space to build a lobby that's amazing, and save lots of $$ on soundproofing, seating, fabric, etc., etc. The other thing is, do you know enough people to fill as many seats as you have shown? I don't know about you, but I'm building a home theater to get away from the multiplex feel. I'm sure I know that many people, but it would be a rare occasion to have them all over at once, AND have them all agree to a movie that we would all want to watch. Generally when there are that many people present, it's a more social event than a movie might be.

OTOH, if you've got that many friends that all like the same sorts of movies, rock on brotha (or sista if appropriate). I'd certainly enjoy watching a build like this!

Dude, are you made of leprechauns? Cause that was awesome!

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post #4 of 19 Old 08-14-2012, 03:42 PM
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Agree with the others on budget. a 30x40' theater is not a peanut butter budget-type investment. The theater I am doing is about a third the size you are planning. Once you take into account materials to build the riser, stage and soffits, acoustic treatments, fabric, speakers, projector, fabric track, carpet, etc. I'll be pushing $40,000 over and above construction costs and mine is cheap compared to many. You could easily be looking at 2-3 times that or more, if you do it right. That said, Peanut Butter budget to me might mean something completely different to you. smile.gif

I agree about the Lobby as well. I wish I had a large enough space to do a nice lobby outside of my theater. You might enjoy that better than a huge theater. You could also set aside some space for an equipment and media room. Easy access to the back of your equipment is critical and DVDs, Blu-rays, etc. quickly accumulate and take space...a nice place to display and store them is a must.

My feel, and I hope the ladies agree with me, is that size is not everything. You can do a "wow" room in a reasonable sized space too.

Whatever route you go, I am also looking forward to seeing this build come along. Awesome amount of space to play with.

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post #5 of 19 Old 08-14-2012, 03:46 PM - Thread Starter
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aaustin - Wow, the Cinemar build really looks good! That is an impressive HT to say the least! Very inspirational.

JPA - I know what you mean about getting away from the multiplex feel. In my current house (which is only 1800 sqft) I regularly have 10 or more people over for a movie night (usually on a weekly basis). The group can grow larger for football or other games. The way that plan is made, it would potentially seat 26 people, including the barstools. (which i agree is overkill and would rarely be fully utilized) I think the minimum I want to seat in actual seating (theater chairs or otherwise) is 12. The bar at the back of the room is just for any additional seating, to be used more during game watching than movies. 4 to 6 barstools would be plenty for me. I just kept adding more because the space allowed for it.


If I make the room shorter, I will have to give up the idea of using sofas or loveseats, unless I can find some good looking ones that recline (but that is waaaayyyy down the road.

Thanks for the input!
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post #6 of 19 Old 08-14-2012, 03:53 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Shan View Post

I'll be pushing $40,000 over and above construction costs and mine is cheap compared to many. You could easily be looking at 2-3 times that or more, if you do it right. That said, Peanut Butter budget to me might mean something completely different to you. smile.gif








Well, right now, your $40k budget looks like someone wrote me a blank check! I do not see my budget being that high. Maybe I should have said I am on a generic peanut butter budget.
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post #7 of 19 Old 08-14-2012, 04:20 PM
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As others have said, that's a huge space and a large amount of seating. A 12' wide screen is probably not big enough for that space, but even at 12', you're going to be asking for a serious projector that will be in the gourmet section of the peanut butter aisle... The other thing that's going to come into consideration for that space is the HVAC load for 26 people. My poor unit doesn't stand a chance when I cram 20 people in for poker in the gameroom. The theater zone can keep up with 12 folks, but yikes doubling that would be quite a load.

I agree that you should consider dividing the space, with a (relatively) smaller dedicated theater (maybe 16 people?) and build the rest as a bar/gameroom/lobby/bathroom/etc. You'll end up with an awesome space regardless!

Jeff

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post #8 of 19 Old 08-14-2012, 04:39 PM
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If I was in your situation I would go with a room 25-30 feet long and 18-20 feet wide with two rows of five chairs each and a bar in the back that seats 6-8. That would split your total space just about in half and leave you plenty of room to do other things with it. Maybe a lobby area with a pool or ping pong table? Overall it is a much better use of space.

Keep in mind that the dimensions that I proposed are still pretty large and may stretch your budget depending on how involved you get with the space.

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post #9 of 19 Old 08-14-2012, 05:01 PM
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for your planning purposes.

allscope.jpg


You need a bigger screen and that requires a high end projector to fill it with a quality image. Something to think about is that if you don't outfit the theater with high end video and audio your ability to fill the seats will diminish over time as their novelty wears off and people would rather have a superior image from their home TVs and sit on their own couch. If you are planning business meetings/training and you need that kind of capacity it makes sense and it can be a tax deduction.
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post #10 of 19 Old 08-14-2012, 05:50 PM - Thread Starter
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After the first comments, I realized how actually gargantuan the space would be. Not needed.

I did rework the space really quickly and did cut the sqft down by about half, which is incredible. Plust it still allows me to seat the number I actually want.

The size is down to 34 ft x 20 ft

Bigmouth, actually I was thinking of using it to have meetings with my employees/managers. I thought it would make a great spot for that... and a nice tax deduction!

So, here is the quickly reworked space. I think I am quickly leaning over to theater seating instead of individual chairs, sofas or loveseats... but we'll see. Like I said, this is just initial so I can work on planning the rest of the house. Is it unusual to plan a house around the HT? haha

Thanks, again!


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post #11 of 19 Old 08-14-2012, 07:33 PM
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In my opinion, Theater seating adds a "Wow" factor all of its own. For my theater, I went with the Fusion Escapes...nice seats at a reasonable price. Power everything. I suggest giving them a look if you decide to go with Theater seats.

The new floor plan looks great...I wish I had that big of space utilize. smile.gif

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post #12 of 19 Old 08-14-2012, 07:43 PM
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planning rule of thumb, riser depth for reclining theater seats is 6 1/2 ft minimum.
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post #13 of 19 Old 08-14-2012, 09:59 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by baxterje View Post

I was thinking of using it to have meetings with my employees/managers. I thought it would make a great spot for that... and a nice tax deduction!

IANATL (and was recently audited, so what do I know biggrin.gif) - be careful there, "home office" and business spaces have to be 100% dedicated to that role, legally... These are not the people you want to be on the wrong side with... eek.gif (my issue was a simple reporting error - hopefully easily resolved and no money involved...)
Quote:
Like I said, this is just initial so I can work on planning the rest of the house. Is it unusual to plan a house around the HT?

Yes, that's completely nuts. No one should ever do that. Completely unheard of. rolleyes.gifrolleyes.gifrolleyes.gif

Jeff

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post #14 of 19 Old 08-14-2012, 10:42 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BIGmouthinDC View Post

planning rule of thumb, riser depth for reclining theater seats is 6 1/2 ft minimum.

foiled again!
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post #15 of 19 Old 08-16-2012, 04:36 AM
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Just adds one foot to your plan.
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post #16 of 19 Old 08-16-2012, 09:43 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by baxterje View Post

I know that is a huge space, but I want a WOW room, even though I have a peanut butter budget.
Theater that size you could pay for it by charging the neighbors addmission! Good luck with the endeavor.
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post #17 of 19 Old 08-16-2012, 11:51 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by baxterje View Post

Bigmouth, actually I was thinking of using it to have meetings with my employees/managers. I thought it would make a great spot for that... and a nice tax deduction!

This idea made my day! Really. Wonder what my accountant would think of that (for me).

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post #18 of 19 Old 08-17-2012, 06:25 AM
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More people write these rooms off than you might expect. As long as you have some justification such as sales meetings or presentations. I'm no CPA, just saying what many people do.

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post #19 of 19 Old 08-17-2012, 08:24 AM
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Sales meetings would be so much more fun if they were all in 11.2 surround and the entire conference table was on a D-Box.
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