No back wall for new home theater - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 18 Old 03-18-2013, 02:41 PM - Thread Starter
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I would like to build a home theater in my basement. My basement is an L shape, where the L is already finished. if I were to install the screen and front speakers at one end of the L, obviously I won't have a back wall. My biggest concern is if not having a back wall will negatively impact the sound. I was thinking of putting the rear surrounds on stands, but should they be mounted on the walls? Any thoughts would be greatly appreciated.

The diagram is not to scale, but close (the bar/exercise and furnace areas are not as large as the diagram). Because of the odd shape of the one side of the L due to the foundation and utility lines, my idea was to build a wall to form a rectangle (13x16x7.5) to make the room more uniform, closing off the end and creating a storage closet. The new wall would have the projector screen. I also thought about building a wall closing the room off, but the staircase wall does not line up with the foundation wall on the other side.

uld have no back wall
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post #2 of 18 Old 03-18-2013, 02:54 PM
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If that's enough space for you, you should, imo, just build the back wall. I'd build it even with the stairs and just sacrifice the couple inches difference between the stair wall and the natural room corner on the other side.

If that's not going to work, you will be making sacrifices in the sound. I couldn't tell you what you will be happy with, but it won't be "right." I'd suggest that it may improve compared to what you've drawn here if you move the surrounds up, nearer to the seats, and then add rear surrounds (7.1) behind the seats - maybe in the ceiling.
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post #3 of 18 Old 03-18-2013, 03:03 PM
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Very similar to my room. I wanted to close it off, but the wife vetoed that. I'm going to mount my rear surrounds from the ceiling, as of now.

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post #4 of 18 Old 03-18-2013, 05:41 PM
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Ever consider a DIY acoustically transparent screen? You could either move the corner back, or move the screen forward and box the left hand side.

At screen.jpg 481k .jpg file

Just a single row of seating?

If you are going with 5.1, you could wall mount dipole surrounds at the end of the seating row.

Also I moved the av closet under the stairs, further back in the room. It would be out of line of sight.
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post #5 of 18 Old 03-18-2013, 08:09 PM - Thread Starter
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Ever consider a DIY acoustically transparent screen? You could either move the corner back, or move the screen forward and box the left hand side.

I actually did think of that. The bottom of the screen would be about 30 inches from the floor, would I see the speakers, or are you suggesting the speakers be up off of the floor? Maybe I'm not getting a clear picture of your idea. I guess I could build a base below the screen to stand the speakers on.

At screen.jpg (481k. jpg file)

Just a single row of seating?

With 2 rows, the front row would be about 7 feet from a 100" screen, which is the size I was thinking. Not too close?

If you are going with 5.1, you could wall mount dipole surrounds at the end of the seating row.

I'm considering Paradigm ADP surrounds, which can be put on stands or mounted on the walls. Also considering ceiling mounts for the rear.

Also I moved the av closet under the stairs, further back in the room. It would be out of line of sight.

Interesting idea. I would consider this, as long as I can get to the back of it under the stairs.

Thanks for the great feeback.
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post #6 of 18 Old 03-18-2013, 08:18 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HopefulFred View Post

If that's enough space for you, you should, imo, just build the back wall. I'd build it even with the stairs and just sacrifice the couple inches difference between the stair wall and the natural room corner on the other side.

If that's not going to work, you will be making sacrifices in the sound. I couldn't tell you what you will be happy with, but it won't be "right." I'd suggest that it may improve compared to what you've drawn here if you move the surrounds up, nearer to the seats, and then add rear surrounds (7.1) behind the seats - maybe in the ceiling.

My thoughts too. For some reason the builder and AV guy were against building the back wall, so I'll ask them why.

Thanks.
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post #7 of 18 Old 03-19-2013, 04:37 AM
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Seven feet from an Acoustically transparent screen is too close. Seven feet from a standard screen likely means the second row is the primary viewing row.

BTW, how much height are you working with?

A couple of other thoughts:

Bar row, open concept:

At screen b.jpg 476k .jpg file

Closed off with a room flip. Entry would be via under the stairs or a new hallway behind the stairs.

At screen c.jpg 404k .jpg file
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File Type: jpg At screen b.jpg (475.7 KB, 14 views)
File Type: jpg At screen c.jpg (403.6 KB, 11 views)
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post #8 of 18 Old 04-18-2013, 07:45 PM - Thread Starter
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It has begun.

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post #9 of 18 Old 04-22-2013, 05:07 AM
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Your idea of making the room rectangle would work better rather then the present condition. As for staircase its not a big deal and an experienced architect would find a way out for that.

cash for settlement
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post #10 of 18 Old 05-07-2013, 12:43 PM - Thread Starter
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I've also decided to frame for new sliding doors for an entry way. The doors will be sound proofed so when closed, will provide a better listening environment. The projector will be mounted directly in front of the stem wall, with a throw distance of about 14' 6". Seating distance will be about 13 feet. Still haven't decided on screen size, but I'm thinking about 105" would be about right.



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post #11 of 18 Old 08-20-2013, 09:24 AM - Thread Starter
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the slow road to A/V happiness. the room is essentially constructed, now comes finishing touches and equipment decisions.




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post #12 of 18 Old 12-18-2013, 09:56 AM
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How did you sound proof those sliding doors?
Soundproofing usually means tightly sealed for no air leakage, and then mass for little as possible low bass pass thru.
Quote:
Originally Posted by dsteak View Post

the slow road to A/V happiness. the room is essentially constructed, now comes finishing touches and equipment decisions.

.

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Originally Posted by dsteak View Post

I've also decided to frame for new sliding doors for an entry way. The doors will be sound proofed so when closed, will provide a better listening environment.
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post #13 of 18 Old 12-18-2013, 10:07 AM - Thread Starter
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The doors are composed of compressed wood with a cherry wood veneer. They are quite heavy. On the media room side, they are covered with batting and an AT fabric. They close pretty tight and there are no gaps around the edges. They were constructed by an A/V installer.
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post #14 of 18 Old 12-18-2013, 01:38 PM
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Dsteak, those are a couple of nice looking doors. I think what I see is Johnson sliding door tracks. I also see about an inch of daylight at the top of the doors, did anything get added to seal that space? Having a gap is OK if absolute soundproofing wasn't a goal. I can see where this is a giant leap forward in creating a light controlled space and improving the acoustic performance.
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post #15 of 18 Old 12-25-2013, 08:27 PM - Thread Starter
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Yes, since i posted, I had the space covered on both sides with molding. Thanks on the doors, I had them made by a guy up in Steamboat Springs, he did a great job. The room is now a closed and very dark space, but it's smaller than I would want, 13 x 16, but it's what I have, so I'm going to make the most of it.

Equipment list is taking shape, almost done, this project has taken so long, but I can see the light at the end of the projector (as it were).
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post #16 of 18 Old 01-03-2014, 01:26 PM - Thread Starter
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Anyone have an opinion about seating and having enough room to get around the chairs? I can put 3 chairs dead center in the room, same width as my screen, nicely entered, with 30" on each side to utilize or get around, or I can go with 4 seats, which would force me to go almost all of the way to one wall, leave 30" on 1 side to get around, and would shift the viewing towards the left, with the 4th seat on the left directly in front of the left speaker and to the left of the screen. In the 1st image posted, it would essentially be adding a fourth seat there which would take me to about 5" from the left wall.

Surrounds will be up high on the sides.

It would be nice to have the 4th seat in case, but I'm not sure if it's going to make the room seem too crowded and awkward for viewing, listening, etc.

I'm kind of thinking out loud here, but would appreciate any thoughts.
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post #17 of 18 Old 01-03-2014, 03:16 PM
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you can get by with a less than 30 inches for the side aisle.
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post #18 of 18 Old 01-03-2014, 03:32 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
you can get by with a less than 30 inches for the side aisle.

Thanks Jeff. I think I'm going to go with a 3 curved row of the Fusion Escapes, which will leave me about 25" on each side, centered on the screen, with the outside seats toed in towards the center. I'd love to go 4 but just don't have the space, but I could possibly get some low portable seats for extra viewing in front, Salamander has a neat Ottoman convertible.
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