Fair warning . . . lengthy post . . . blame it on a 3 hour flight!
Now, on to the pictures of the room itself….
Here is a view from just outside the theater. I will be purchasing and installing a backlit movie poster lightbox
and a custom Stonewater Cinema marquee
from Hollywood Marquees
. Both of these units are typically surface-mounted and protrude about 4 inches. But since they are built-to-order, they are honoring my request for a small amount of customization with regards to the electrical connections so I may recess this unit into the wall. Instead of being hardwired with a pull-chain to turn the light on/off, I am requesting that the unit be hard-wired only at a very specific wire entry point and then I will turn the power on/off for each unit via a standard light switch. I may even tie each of these into a Grafik Eye zone. When recessed, the frame of the marquee will sit on the surface of the wall, making it looked like a framed and backlit piece of artwork. The movie poster unit will stick out from the wall about ¾” since the front is hinged and must maintain proper swing clearances to change the poster. The movie poster unit also comes with interchangeable placards that can be placed either above or below the movie poster that can say “NOW SHOWING”, “COMING SOON” or any other phrase I choose. And one nice thing about the marquee is that they include a fairly generous pack of individual letters that can be slipped in and out of the marquee for up to two lines of text to feature the movie title, rating, etc. - just like a real movie theater. The letters go in the white area pictured below:
I plan on going the DIY route with two other movie poster display boxes using the Cuzed / Moggie / Air Benji method found in this forum and at these links:
DIY Lightbox thread started by Cuzed: http://www.avsforum.com/t/1392444/another-diy-poster-marquee-light-box
Moggie's Old Vic Theater Thread: http://www.avsforum.com/t/1117148/saga-of-the-old-vic/1050#post_21989987
Air Benji's Esquire Theater Thread: http://www.avsforum.com/t/1289590/the-esquire-theater-construction-begins/1650#post_22610398
For soundproofing, I decided to go all-out and use full double-studded walls with a 1” air gap. You can see on the LEFT wall that I already have 1/2" OSB, Green Glue and 1/2" drywall installed. This is because I had originally chosen to maximize the width of my theater. When I made the decision to add the second wall, I kept hearing John’s (from the Soundproofing Company) voice in my ear telling me to uninstall this sheet material because of the “triple leaf effect”. As real as this phenomenon is, I have consciously decided to not rip it all out and just roll with things the way you see them here. Between acoustic treatments, two layers of 5/8” drywall attached to a separate and decoupled wall filled with R13….then a 1” air gap, then ½” drywall / Green Glue / ½”OSB covering a second wall filled with R13….I think I should be OK. Ideal – no, but livable – yes. Perhaps the “boom” of certain low frequencies may get emphasized, but I just couldn’t see ripping everything out. I’ll be sure to report my findings once things are up and running.
I had a 4" plumbing drain line coming from the second floor that made an immediate 90 degree turn the moment the radius had cleared the underside of my joists. In order to install a soundproof shell, I had to lower and reconfigure this pipe. I calculated that with the ceiling hangers, the 7/8” hat track and two layers of 5/8” drywall that I would need a minimum of 2.5” between the pipe and the joists. If you look carefully, you can see 2.5" of blocking that served as my minimum spacing when I reconfigured the pipe. My plan is to clean and wrap the pipe with soundproofing material and then recreate the proper slope with pipe hangers secured to the ceiling of my new soundproofed shell. I will then further encapsulate the pipe with framing, insulation, OSB/Green Glue/Drywall AND THEN build out the perimeter soffit around this and the other mechanicals using more of the same standard soundproofing techniques. This should be more than enough to quell the sound of running water, flushing toilets and the like. The ¾” PEX water lines will also be remounted directly to the underside of the soundproof shell after being wrapped with standard foam pipe wrap FWIW.
Full view of the total mess of mechanical lines I have to deal with in the ceiling of this theater. Not only are there water and drain lines, but gas lines and two VERY noisy HVAC line sets. I have unsecured everything so the soundproof shell can be built and the lines insulated / wrapped and secured to the shell. Like I described above for the drain and water lines, I will be building a "box" around all of these mechanicals to contain the sound, followed by the soundproofed perimeter soffit. Hopefully this will eliminate any sounds from these mechanical systems seeping into the theater and raising my noise floor.
Two AC line sets, gas lines, and temporary installation (support) of the 10" flex return line dedicated for the theater HVAC. I left the full length of the 10” flex duct in place until it is determined exactly where I will be placing the return air duct. Once this is determined, I will cut the flex, add a rigid 90 degree elbow and 10” rigid pipe down into the 14x14 return air box collar. This is done for three reasons: 1. So the HVAC penetration through the soundproof shell is with rigid pipe (the preferred method professionals use); 2. The ceiling penetration is contained within the soundproof soffit (with acoustic caulking around the penetration, fyi); 3. The 90 degree elbow will hinder the amount of escaping sound through this penetration and fan noise from the nearby HVAC unit from entering the room. Well, at least that’s the plan!
Full picture of rear wall. You can see immediately behind the theater framing that this is another area where I was previously trying to maximize the theater dimensions. The original back wall is a 2x6 wall directly underneath the steel support beam and faced with ½” OSB, Green Glue and ½” drywall. The wall is filled with R19 and the theater wall will naturally be filled with R13 and covered with DD 5/8” + GG. But this is another area of potential “triple leaf effect”. Fortunately the right wall and most of the front wall are backed by concrete covered directly with closed cell spray foam.
Right side wall of theater. The wall is built in front of 2" of closed cell polyurethane spray foam that was applied to the concrete foundation wall. I slid the wall into position as close as possible and trimmed down a bunch of “peaks” in the spray foam with my reciprocating saw where the framing was hitting high points in the foam. I probably gave myself about 1.5” of room by doing this while still preserving a minimum spray foam thickness. I will have to go back and do some reframing around the line sets because I am not happy with how these mechanicals run through the wall. I think I can reframe a bit and do better.
Left side of theater wall. Theater door is in the left side of the photo. As you can see, I will have to deal with a steel support beam running horizontally through the middle of my room. This is unfortunate because I will be building a fiber optic star ceiling and like the continuity a single large area provides. However, dividing the soffit in two is not the end of the world.
Front theater wall. Behind the framing on the left side (where you see the drywall), there is a two foot extension that was originally going to be orphaned space. Since I am fighting for every inch of depth and viewing distance I might – MIGHT – take the plunge and open this area up to gain the extra cubic volume for my infinite baffle subwoofer system. I might pick up 5 or 6 inches of depth in the room by being able to slide the baffle wall back even further, but I will be discussing this with Dennis first before I commit the hours to redoing this part of the theater. As discussed above, green foam indicates where the concrete foundation is along my front wall.
To house all of my equipment for the whole house including the theater, I purchased two Middle Atlantic MRK-4431 racks which can be ganged together. These racks came from through an eBay deal a couple of years ago and were already outfitted with a full-blown thermal management system, power protection system and rear door. As luck would have it, a year or so later another seller on eBay was liquidating the EXTREMELY expensive smoked plexiglass locking front doors brand new, so I was able to pick up on two of them. I am actually almost as excited to put together the rack and load all the equipment as I am building out the theater. I have a massive number of dedicated circuits and low voltage wiring running into this rack area. You will also see that I located these racks at the foot of the basement steps so there is still easy access from upstairs in case I need to load any media. As the crow flies, the front of the rack is about 7 feet away from the left wall of the theater which is on the other side of the steps. After I lay hardwood in this area, the racks will sit directly on the floor and are framed to protrude through the wall. These racks represent the front of a fully dedicated equipment room, complete with dedicated ventilation systems.
Another view of the racks:
I will be posting a lot more photos, plus separate posts highlighting my equipment plan, my full basement plan and my soundproofing plan featuring products from Kinetics Noise Control and the ubiquitous Green Glue.