Wow; I find myself both excited, and
trepidatious...about starting this thread. But...the time has
come to at least try, to re-vamp my withering, v1 of a Home Theater.
Like many, I suppose; I made many, many mistakes...my first go-round. In my defense, I didn't exactly have the easiest space to work with, from the start. Mine...is a walk-up, Attic build. That provided challenges, certainly; and in hindsight...while my mistakes were both in conceptualization and
construction...I suppose the biggest misstep, came from not biting the bullet, making the hard choices, and instead trying to fit my square-peg of a build...into the proverbial round-hole (or triangular
, in this case
There are some pics below; the first two, represent where I came from...the last three, are as the space sits now. Construction-wise, the biggest problem...aside from uh, not finishing (lol)...has to do with the screen-wall. The Attic was cut in two, with the HT space being ~18 x 12. For a variety of reasons, the screen had to go on the dividing
wall; but I also need access...to the other "half" of the Attic that would be behind it.My
strategy, was to try and allow pass-thru...with those bump-outs you see, to each side of the screen-area, in pic 4. I built the space, so that the Fronts sat in there; and the idea was...I'd find a way to fasten some kind of removable panel, that was acoustically transparent (GOM, of course). Then...when the missus and I needed access behind that wall, we'd...remove the panel, move the speaker; do our business...put the speaker back. Well...you can already see where this is going; it was not the most practical solution.
Combine that with the fact that I...moved PJ, screen, recliners, and 7.1 into the space...before it was done
; and well...you have the perfect recipe, for an unfinished theater on your hands. With the "screen-wall" dilemma staring me in the face, I tried to use
the space...while I figured out the "right" solution. But it made the space, so impractical; we actually started to dread
using it...rather than taking any joy.
Because only the "HT" portion is finished...not completely closing it off from the unfinished space, made it: unbearably hot in the Summer, unbearably cold in the Winter; and yes...more bugs
near the screen, than anyone would ever want to contend with, lol. We eked-out a few movies, in the small slivers of time...when the temperature was "just right"; and then it started to become the storage
area, you see now.
But...believe it or not; the sh*t-hole you see before you...did
cost either close to, or just shy of the 5-figure mark. I can't live, with that space just catching boxes. Hell...it could have been that, for free; without the drywall, carpet, and blackest-of-flat-black paint I could find.
So...it has to become something
In hindsight...or maybe I should say, knowing what I know now; I wouldn't make it the dark, you-can-only-watch-a-movie-in-here man-cave that I set out to. I'd like to lighten it up, and make it more of a multi-purpose space. As such...I had to think long and hard, about whether to keep it an HT
at all. After all...I don't have to consider the money spent to finish it, a waste...if I at least turn it back into usable
square footage; a nice Family Room, with a 65" Plasma.
However; since I still have my 100" Carada, and old PJ (screens, aren't exactly a hot commodity in my
neck of the woods...and the PJ, being old, probably has little value in the used market)...I've decided to try and make the space usable for movie-watching again.
When I talk about biting the bullet, and making hard choices; I can sum it up in a word. I needed a damn DOOR...lol. A DOOR, that allows access from the finished side of the space, to the unfinished. Because it's an Attic...and the challenges of the A-frame; there's just no getting around where it needs to go. It's going to have to be behind
That's the hard choice; the one that I avoided, at all costs...and, in the end, it cost me my room. I will hear
all the cockamamie suggestions, to still try and work around it. But the truth is...you'll have a hard time convincing me. With what I've been through (for 3-4 years now), I'd rather have the room completely
shut-off...and not have it end up being an "HT"; than try another work-around, and wind up back at this place.
I think both are do-able...but, as always, I'll need some help from the forum. With Spring breaking, here in the Mid-Atlantic...I'm hoping to be able to start working, in the very near future (even with the re-vamp, the space will always be hard to use in the dead
of Summer. I've got, what is an adequate ductless unit; but it can't perform miracles. It would be nice, to actually be able to use
it again...before the dog-days roll around). So this is idea
With the frustrations, that ill-conceived screen-wall has come to represent; I'm tempted to instruct my new contractor (which was another mistake, first time around. I can barely swing a hammer straight...but I tried to hire someone, on the "cheap", and have he and I do it ourselves; with the direction from my build-thread. In the end...it certainly didn't turn out well (natch), and didn't even end up being very "cheap". I have a new guy, and new approach this time around...though I will still rely on the direction and feedback of the group
)...to just tear it the hell down, and start anew. However...looking at it; really
looking at it and the room, for the first time in long while (understandably)...maybe that's unnecessary? Maybe, my first step...is to just get a door put in; right smack in the middle of the screen-area...and start thinking about how to best minimalize that impact, on viewing.
I know that's a lot to take in. You know how things are in the beginning
; lots of ideas...no starting point, lol. Not so different, second time around. The good
news, I guess; is I'm not starting with nothing
. Almost everything
, will need some tweaking
; but let's say we're at least at v.5...on our way toward v2.0. I'll really look forward to some initial feedback, starting up conversations about the direction to take the (re-)build...and seeing if some of my old friends are still skulking-about out there.