16.5' X 24' dedicated theater construction - AVS Forum

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Dedicated Theater Design & Construction

Johnnymenudo's Avatar Johnnymenudo
08:45 PM Liked: 10
post #1 of 10
01-13-2013 | Posts: 74
Joined: Jun 2003
I am building a home and planning on a fairly large dedicated home theater. My current home theater was a complete DIY job that took many months of planning and building.

This is part of a builder's parade of homes, so the the time to build this home and theater is very tight so unfortunately, I will not be able to do the construction myself. I hired a firm for the audio and networking and they seem very knowledgeable in those areas, but are more or less leaving the design of the theater up to me and my builder, Not an ideal situation and we have a time crunch.

I am basically planning a fairly simple design with some characteristics of sandmans and the bacon race theater. Stage with proscenium, tray ceiling with lights, front row of seats ground level, 2nd row of seats on a riser, and a third row of seats in back of room at a bar height. 9 foot ceiling with plan for 120-130" wide screen 2.35:1. 16" soffit for cables, HVAC, and plumbing.

Due to time contraint there will be no fancy pillars or personal touches that will be time consuming. 7 or 9 channels of speakers, wall mounted. Canned lighting and maybe some sconces, but otherwise just a room. Will probably add acoustic treatments after the show.

A few questions and needed advice:

1) My audio guys are wanting to showcase the Sony 4k projector so it will be installed for the show, and they have offered it to me for less than half of retail price. As an alternative they will also sell me any projector or screen I want for a bit less than wholesale.. Any suggestions?

2) if I build a stage, is anchoring it to the floor reasonable instead of filing with sand? As an alternative to full sand filled, is partially filled with the remainder fiberglass insulation a bad idea?

3) Has anyone used u-boats from auralex under the riser to help tactile transducer function?

4) auralex sheetblock vs. green glue.

5) my architect wants a 6 foot theater entrance with french doors. Sounds pretty but not very good from an audio standpoint. I am less concerned abouut sound escaping than the doors rattling. Any input.

Been a long term member here but away for a few years. Thanks for the input in advance.

Any
Johnnymenudo's Avatar Johnnymenudo
08:29 AM Liked: 10
post #2 of 10
01-14-2013 | Posts: 74
Joined: Jun 2003
OK - maybe too many questions in one thread. How about the stage and sand question and Sony 4k projector as priority? wink.gif
jautor's Avatar jautor
09:28 AM Liked: 379
post #3 of 10
01-14-2013 | Posts: 8,316
Joined: Jun 2001
Quote:
Originally Posted by Johnnymenudo View Post

This is part of a builder's parade of homes, so the the time to build this home and theater is very tight

Meaning this will be an "open house" or model home for some time, just for a "Grand Opening" event, or for photography?
Quote:
I hired a firm for the audio and networking and they seem very knowledgeable in those areas, but are more or less leaving the design of the theater up to me and my builder, Not an ideal situation and we have a time crunch.

If they're not designing the theater, you should hire Dennis and at least use the AVS Theater Layout service... Running quickly to get a design done is not a good recipe if you're not an expert. And from the rest of your post, I'm not getting the vibe that the "audio firm" has a theater construction background???
Quote:
I am basically planning a fairly simple design with some characteristics of sandmans and the bacon race theater. Stage with proscenium, tray ceiling with lights, front row of seats ground level, 2nd row of seats on a riser, and a third row of seats in back of room at a bar height. 9 foot ceiling with plan for 120-130" wide screen 2.35:1. 16" soffit for cables, HVAC, and plumbing.

Your room dimensions are what I would have wanted (slightly larger than mine). Assuming you're planning an AT screen, too? All of this together (especially with 2.35 in the mix), this is NOT a simple build. You can fit all of that in those room dimensions, but there's not a lot of room for error. You need a good, solid, design plan.
Quote:
Due to time contraint there will be no fancy pillars or personal touches that will be time consuming. 7 or 9 channels of speakers, wall mounted. Canned lighting and maybe some sconces, but otherwise just a room. Will probably add acoustic treatments after the show.

For a "Parade of Homes", in my experience, the decor of the room is usually seen to be much more important than the audio/video performance. That said, not having the acoustics figured out for a 4K "demo room" doesn't sound like the right answer, either...
Quote:
1) My audio guys are wanting to showcase the Sony 4k projector so it will be installed for the show, and they have offered it to me for less than half of retail price. As an alternative they will also sell me any projector or screen I want for a bit less than wholesale.. Any suggestions?

Budget?

The more projector you can buy at 50% off, the better. biggrin.gif
Quote:
2) if I build a stage, is anchoring it to the floor reasonable instead of filing with sand? As an alternative to full sand filled, is partially filled with the remainder fiberglass insulation a bad idea?

First floor, second floor?
Quote:
4) auralex sheetblock vs. green glue.

Green glue.
Quote:
5) my architect wants a 6 foot theater entrance with french doors. Sounds pretty but not very good from an audio standpoint. I am less concerned abouut sound escaping than the doors rattling. Any input.

Assuming they're talking about the heavy, swinging doors with the porthole window - they certainly won't rattle. Won't contain sound, but won't rattle... wink.gif


Jeff
Johnnymenudo's Avatar Johnnymenudo
10:25 AM Liked: 10
post #4 of 10
01-14-2013 | Posts: 74
Joined: Jun 2003
Quote:
Originally Posted by jautor View Post

Meaning this will be an "open house" or model home for some time, just for a "Grand Opening" event, or for photography?
If they're not designing the theater, you should hire Dennis and at least use the AVS Theater Layout service... Running quickly to get a design done is not a good recipe if you're not an expert. And from the rest of your post, I'm not getting the vibe that the "audio firm" has a theater construction background???
Your room dimensions are what I would have wanted (slightly larger than mine). Assuming you're planning an AT screen, too? All of this together (especially with 2.35 in the mix), this is NOT a simple build. You can fit all of that in those room dimensions, but there's not a lot of room for error. You need a good, solid, design plan.
For a "Parade of Homes", in my experience, the decor of the room is usually seen to be much more important than the audio/video performance. That said, not having the acoustics figured out for a 4K "demo room" doesn't sound like the right answer, either...
Budget?

The more projector you can buy at 50% off, the better. biggrin.gif
First floor, second floor?
Green glue.
Assuming they're talking about the heavy, swinging doors with the porthole window - they certainly won't rattle. Won't contain sound, but won't rattle... wink.gif


Jeff

Thanks for the reply. Basement build. Surround on two sides by 9 foot foundation concrete. One wall adjacent to mechanicals, the other adjacent to bathroom.

it is for a showcase of builders homes. Once over with, I can move in and make any changes I want. Goal is to do what I need to get the basics done by June, but still leave some room for improvements or refinements. Obviously the basic room construction, risers,HVAC, electrical , and stage will not be something I can change easy.

Planning 6" staggered studs for the walls not adajcent to the foundation. Two layer drywall. Green glue sounds like a winner here.

I understand the benefits of having a pro design the room. I think my guys know what they are doing, but they do not seem to be to focused on the actually nuances of construction preferring to leave that to the builder. They have 2 or 3 home theaters in the parade of homes every year. Some are very elaborate and some are modest. My audio guys came up with the dimensions..I do not think they like AT screens and recommended I wall mount a curved screen and let the subs and speakers be exposed. Good advice and that is my current set up, but I was thinking AT screen and hidden speakers this time around.
jautor's Avatar jautor
10:57 AM Liked: 379
post #5 of 10
01-14-2013 | Posts: 8,316
Joined: Jun 2001
Quote:
Originally Posted by Johnnymenudo View Post

it is for a showcase of builders homes. Once over with, I can move in and make any changes I want. Goal is to do what I need to get the basics done by June, but still leave some room for improvements or refinements. Obviously the basic room construction, risers,HVAC, electrical , and stage will not be something I can change easy.

So they have it as a model for some number of months? Assuming so, you'd be buying a "used" projector then, with a lot of hours on it. Nothing wrong with that, but that 50% off MSRP suddenly isn't such a steal. Probably a good deal, though for a high end projector.
Quote:
Planning 6" staggered studs for the walls not adajcent to the foundation. Two layer drywall. Green glue sounds like a winner here.

Ask Ted for advice here... Ceiling plan?
Quote:
I understand the benefits of having a pro design the room. I think my guys know what they are doing, but they do not seem to be to focused on the actually nuances of construction preferring to leave that to the builder.

No offense, but "know what they are doing" in audio vs. theater construction are two different things. You can be an expert in one and not the other. Leaving "the nuances of construction" to a builder (meaning, a home builder) doesn't sound like anything a theater construction expert would do...
Quote:
They have 2 or 3 home theaters in the parade of homes every year. Some are very elaborate and some are modest. My audio guys came up with the dimensions..

As I commented previously, for a builder's showcase, the decor of the theater will be more important than the A/V performance. I'd bet that the "elaborate" theaters mentioned have quite a bit of finish work and decorative elements - but probably only average "performance" for the total money spent...
Quote:
I do not think they like AT screens and recommended I wall mount a curved screen and let the subs and speakers be exposed.

Who's paying for this? rolleyes.gif

I have my speaker exposed for a number of reasons - mostly due to space considerations and my intention to use motorized masking. I'm surprised that a designer would recommend that approach given the aesthetic considerations for a showpiece. One would expect the larger audience of potential buyers would prefer not to see speakers - and again, it sounds to me like they're audio folks and not theater builders. They can sell and install the curved screen without getting into any construction trades themselves.

The curved screen also comes back to my budget question - those can be a big expense and unless you've got very wide seating for the screen size, IMO there are better uses for that money in the build...

Jeff
Johnnymenudo's Avatar Johnnymenudo
11:35 AM Liked: 10
post #6 of 10
01-14-2013 | Posts: 74
Joined: Jun 2003
Quote:
Originally Posted by jautor View Post

So they have it as a model for some number of months? Assuming so, you'd be buying a "used" projector then, with a lot of hours on it. Nothing wrong with that, but that 50% off MSRP suddenly isn't such a steal. Probably a good deal, though for a high end projector.
Ask Ted for advice here... Ceiling plan?
No offense, but "know what they are doing" in audio vs. theater construction are two different things. You can be an expert in one and not the other. Leaving "the nuances of construction" to a builder (meaning, a home builder) doesn't sound like anything a theater construction expert would do...
As I commented previously, for a builder's showcase, the decor of the theater will be more important than the A/V performance. I'd bet that the "elaborate" theaters mentioned have quite a bit of finish work and decorative elements - but probably only average "performance" for the total money spent...
Who's paying for this? rolleyes.gif

I have my speaker exposed for a number of reasons - mostly due to space considerations and my intention to use motorized masking. I'm surprised that a designer would recommend that approach given the aesthetic considerations for a showpiece. One would expect the larger audience of potential buyers would prefer not to see speakers - and again, it sounds to me like they're audio folks and not theater builders. They can sell and install the curved screen without getting into any construction trades themselves.

The curved screen also comes back to my budget question - those can be a big expense and unless you've got very wide seating for the screen size, IMO there are better uses for that money in the build...

Jeff

Showcase for 2 weeks. The discount would factor in bulb use. Probably 80 hours total.

I think you might be a bit off base on the audio / video guys. They are not into aesthetics and seem to be mostly performance oriented. They have built quite a few theaters - I have seen at least a dozen myself and they seem to stress performance over appearance. They are not opposed to pillars, fancy lighting, starfield celings, etc. but they want the room to look and sound good. They have a local reputation as the guys to do the job. I am actually suprised they are not taking more of a role in the design of the room from the standpoint of doing architectural drawings, speaker location, riser height, etc. It is a bit confusing. I think they recognize me as a DIY guy. Not sure if that is the reason. that is why I came here.

I personally have no issue with a non AT screen and exposed speakers. I thought AT with speakers behind would be something to try. I think their main concern is loss of video quality with the AT screen.

I got the impression they thought a stage was an expensive decoration. Wall mount the screen and put the speakers on the concrete floor. The curved screen was at my discretion but they are open to me using any screen I want. They even said I can buy whatever products they don't carry if i want them in my theater and they will use them.

So. I can go the pro route and hire a designer to work with my audio guys and builder, or I can go the DIY route.

I already have all the audio gear and a good projector, but thought a projector upgrade is needed for a larger 2.35: 1 screen. The budget is all projector and screeen and room build. I would like to stay under 40K total if possible.

Thanks.
jautor's Avatar jautor
11:56 AM Liked: 379
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01-14-2013 | Posts: 8,316
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Johnnymenudo View Post

Showcase for 2 weeks. The discount would factor in bulb use. Probably 80 hours total.

Ok, that's essentially a trivial break-in period, and just saves you from any infant mortality issues... So that's a great deal - like the "program cars" sold after golf tournaments... biggrin.gif
Quote:
I think you might be a bit off base on the audio / video guys. They are not into aesthetics and seem to be mostly performance oriented.

I'm only going on what you've said - don't know who these guys are or anything about them. But again, "performance" of the equipment vs. the room are different skills.
Quote:
They have built quite a few theaters - I have seen at least a dozen myself and they seem to stress performance over appearance. They are not opposed to pillars, fancy lighting, starfield celings, etc. but they want the room to look and sound good. They have a local reputation as the guys to do the job. I am actually suprised they are not taking more of a role in the design of the room from the standpoint of doing architectural drawings, speaker location, riser height, etc. It is a bit confusing. I think they recognize me as a DIY guy. Not sure if that is the reason. that is why I came here.

Which is why this surprises me in terms of a builder's showcase. If it's to show off the home, they should be very much concerned with the look of the room... Only an A/V guy would appreciate the 4K projector compared to one at 1/3 the price...
Quote:
I personally have no issue with a non AT screen and exposed speakers. I thought AT with speakers behind would be something to try. I think their main concern is loss of video quality with the AT screen.

I don't either, but I didn't know how long this was a "demo house" before it was yours. For a two-week stint, the design choices are all up to you... Loss of video quality on an AT screen is an outdated concern. Without a diagram showing seating distances, though, it's hard to say if it would be an issue or not.
Quote:
I got the impression they thought a stage was an expensive decoration. Wall mount the screen and put the speakers on the concrete floor.

Certainly doesn't have to be expensive... It's just a framed box after all. (And yes, sand filled since you're in the basement)
Quote:
So. I can go the pro route and hire a designer to work with my audio guys and builder, or I can go the DIY route.

For $600 the Layout service is an excellent mid-ground. Get the advice of expert builders and DIY the work from there. It also gets your design solid a lot faster than trying to figure it all out for yourself.
Quote:
I already have all the audio gear and a good projector, but thought a projector upgrade is needed for a larger 2.35: 1 screen. The budget is all projector and screen and room build. I would like to stay under 40K total if possible.

What's the current projector? Are you planning on zooming or using a lens?

That's a respectable budget - but is that from bare walls (unfinished basement), or a basic room shell (finished)? Include seating? My build would have been in that range if I don't include the A/V equipment and the furniture...

Jeff
Johnnymenudo's Avatar Johnnymenudo
12:04 PM Liked: 10
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01-14-2013 | Posts: 74
Joined: Jun 2003
Quote:
Originally Posted by jautor View Post

Ok, that's essentially a trivial break-in period, and just saves you from any infant mortality issues... So that's a great deal - like the "program cars" sold after golf tournaments... biggrin.gif
I'm only going on what you've said - don't know who these guys are or anything about them. But again, "performance" of the equipment vs. the room are different skills.
Which is why this surprises me in terms of a builder's showcase. If it's to show off the home, they should be very much concerned with the look of the room... Only an A/V guy would appreciate the 4K projector compared to one at 1/3 the price...
I don't either, but I didn't know how long this was a "demo house" before it was yours. For a two-week stint, the design choices are all up to you... Loss of video quality on an AT screen is an outdated concern. Without a diagram showing seating distances, though, it's hard to say if it would be an issue or not.
Certainly doesn't have to be expensive... It's just a framed box after all. (And yes, sand filled since you're in the basement)
For $600 the Layout service is an excellent mid-ground. Get the advice of expert builders and DIY the work from there. It also gets your design solid a lot faster than trying to figure it all out for yourself.
What's the current projector? Are you planning on zooming or using a lens?

That's a respectable budget - but is that from bare walls (unfinished basement), or a basic room shell (finished)? Include seating? My build would have been in that range if I don't include the A/V equipment and the furniture...

Jeff

The basic room shell, drywall, carpet, hvac, etc is included in price of home. Any special construction, stage, platform, wiring, lighting etc is going to be at my expense. I have an epson 5020 now and use a 16:9 DIY screen 8 feet wide.

I have a call in to my guys to see if they have a subcontractor that does the actual room design for them and if not, if they mind if I bring in an outside vendor. part of me wants to save the money and just steal the good ideas from sandman and bacon rice theater, but I realize that no two rooms are identical.

thanks,
jautor's Avatar jautor
12:53 PM Liked: 379
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01-14-2013 | Posts: 8,316
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Johnnymenudo View Post

The basic room shell, drywall, carpet, hvac, etc is included in price of home. Any special construction, stage, platform, wiring, lighting etc is going to be at my expense. I have an epson 5020 now and use a 16:9 DIY screen 8 feet wide.

Then you've got a great budget to work with. If I look at my build, your budget would match mine if I started from the finished room shell. And I had to buy all the A/V gear.

And that's not a bad projector to start with, either!
Quote:
part of me wants to save the money and just steal the good ideas from sandman and bacon rice theater, but I realize that no two rooms are identical.

My advice, from experience - spend that tiny bit of the budget to get a plan from a real expert. Tell Dennis' crew what you like about sandman / bacon race as your input to the design, and exactly - no two rooms are alike. I know my room would have been better had I had their expertise up-front - especially during home construction (as my theater wasn't completed for another two years after the initial build).

And as you say you're under time constraints, that's the other reason to call in a real expert.

Jeff
Johnnymenudo's Avatar Johnnymenudo
04:23 PM Liked: 10
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01-14-2013 | Posts: 74
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jautor View Post

Then you've got a great budget to work with. If I look at my build, your budget would match mine if I started from the finished room shell. And I had to buy all the A/V gear.

And that's not a bad projector to start with, either!
My advice, from experience - spend that tiny bit of the budget to get a plan from a real expert. Tell Dennis' crew what you like about sandman / bacon race as your input to the design, and exactly - no two rooms are alike. I know my room would have been better had I had their expertise up-front - especially during home construction (as my theater wasn't completed for another two years after the initial build).

And as you say you're under time constraints, that's the other reason to call in a real expert.

Jeff

Thanks Jeff. I got a call into my builder and audio guys to discuss. Sent an email to Dennis as well. Thanks.
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