How come people spend so much on HT GEAR but have such crappy rooms ? - Page 2 - AVS Forum
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post #31 of 50 Old 07-19-2013, 08:44 AM
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Originally Posted by jkust View Post

Interesting post. I see the pics of peoples rooms with their great gear and it just doesn't match. I compare it to this: The neighborhood across from mine has about 300 really crappy houses. They each cost about $400,000 to build and are just crappy and crammed together. I for the life of me can't figure out why so many of them have really high end cars and many times multiple new Mercedes or whatever in their tiny driveways. In my simple mind, I wouldn't spend a dime on anything until I got the heck out of the trailer park of houses. It is simple to go out and lease any level of car. It is simple to go out and buy a bunch of high end home theater gear on credit. It is not simple to go out and buy a decent house without the means to pay for it like is used to be in the easy money days.

What world do you live in where you don't consider a $400,000 house high end? Gees, I paid $65,500 for mine. You must consider it a shack.
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post #32 of 50 Old 07-19-2013, 09:18 AM
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Originally Posted by macfan View Post

What world do you live in where you don't consider a $400,000 house high end? Gees, I paid $65,500 for mine. You must consider it a shack.

Find out the location. A million dollar home in parts of San Diego would look like crap next to my 200k home in Olathe, KS. But of course, you're paying for the weather, not just the house. ;-)
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post #33 of 50 Old 07-19-2013, 09:47 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by macfan View Post

What world do you live in where you don't consider a $400,000 house high end? Gees, I paid $65,500 for mine. You must consider it a shack.

$400K in Toronto buys a 2 bedroom bungalow on a 25 foot lot in most parts of the city.

On the other hand, $65K probably buys you a city block in Detroit these days smile.gif
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post #34 of 50 Old 07-19-2013, 10:04 AM - Thread Starter
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Detroit. Lol. I just read they want to file bankruptcy ???

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post #35 of 50 Old 07-19-2013, 10:05 AM
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Originally Posted by kromkamp View Post

$400K in Toronto buys a 2 bedroom bungalow on a 25 foot lot in most parts of the city.

On the other hand, $65K probably buys you a city block in Detroit these days smile.gif

$400K might squeak you into a small bungalow in a handful of Toronto neighborhoods. If you actually want a nice lot with something on it that isn't falling apart, you'd better be bringing $600-800K to the table. For most buyers, 400K is condo or maybe row house territory.

Here in Vancouver, I've seen parking spots sell for $400K. smile.gif

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post #36 of 50 Old 07-19-2013, 10:40 AM
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Originally Posted by Mfusick View Post

I have two rows and my theater is 34x24 so I might end up spending more than normal. I'll need at least 6 chairs and I want a full couch/sofa in black leather so I can enjoy it laying down when I am lazy biggrin.gif.

Like Spaceman said, that's really big.

I wouldn't underestimate how much of an impact room size has on your budget - IMHO it's almost exponential. More space means more building materials - everything from lumber, sheetrock, and paint to green glue and fabric. More fluffy insulation. More rigid insulation. More lighting. More controls. More wire. More screen fabric. Speakers or drivers to fill all that space. Extra subs. Which leads to.... More amps with more wattage, plus a bigger projector to fill that big screen with lumens.

I don't think that 20K will do it for that space. I'm pretty damn cheap (used Paradigm Reference speakers from Craigslist, subs from the SVS clearance outlet, refurb Epson projector, a clearance Onkyo AVR, someone's leftover GG from ebay) and will probably just make it with a 10K budget for room and gear. Bear in mind this is for a 10x12x8 space.

For us budget small-room guys, I think the ideal ratio skews a bit more towards gear - I'm seeing about 35-40% room, 60-65% equipment. Reason being that we simply need less "stuff" to finish the room to a good quality, but no matter how small your space, there is a definite price floor below which you cannot find enthusiast-grade equipment.

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post #37 of 50 Old 07-19-2013, 10:45 AM
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Yeah I have been watching some hgtv lately and quite a few of the shows are based in eastern Canada and I think specifically Toronto. It is staggering what people will pay for a row home that shares walls with your neighbor. Basically a really skinny apartment. They all seem to be fiercely loyal to the neighborhoods though so it must be a wonderful place to live. Better that I remain ignorant and happy here in Olathe KS where very nice homes are affordable as Chirpie said.

As to the original question I think it was answered well and there are some nice breakdowns of costs alreAdy provided. I am sure that personal preference guides a lot of it too. On a limited budget most people here in the audio video science forum will choose to put more money into the audio video performance vs the aesthetics of the room. However I do understand your point that it does look strange to see expensive equipment in a "bare" room. But most of us can't have it all and everyone will find their own way to appropriate the money.
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post #38 of 50 Old 07-19-2013, 10:49 AM
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post #39 of 50 Old 07-19-2013, 01:02 PM
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The 1961 built bungalow next door in my Vancouver suburb (45 mins from downtown) just sold for 625k. It's not move in ready and needs either 100k retail Reno or a tear down. frown.gif
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post #40 of 50 Old 07-20-2013, 02:58 AM
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I have begun to wonder if a small room with minimal detailing, is the ultimate movie watching space?

I can see where a small two seat room with a Smyth Research Realiser A8 could be a great sound system and eliminate RSIC clips, and reduce HVAC
issues. A nice mid range projector on a 8-9' wide screen with four way masking system. Double drywall, a gasketted door, and a hush box on the projector would
maintain a low noise floor.
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post #41 of 50 Old 07-21-2013, 07:47 PM
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I've been thinking about headphones too.
  • Don't need to soundproof the room, just your ears. Works for sound coming in and especially well for keeping sound in the theater.
  • No need for expensive or exotic HVAC solutions to minimize vent discharge noise.
  • No need for acoustic treatments - eliminates one facet of decor challenges with theaters, plus saves money not needing buy panels, pay design fees indicating where to put what, or trying to hide everything behind fabric.
  • No need for an AT screen - brighter image from same projector, more screen options, simpler mounting, no need to build a screenwall, don't loose 2' to 3' of room length, etc.
  • No undesired seat to seat variation due to room acoustics.
  • No limitations on trim or decor because of room acoustics.
  • No need for expensive speakers that are capable of filling the whole room with sound when all that matters is the sound that arrives at your ears. All the other sound is not only wasteful & inefficient, but also undesirable.
  • No need for high powered amplification to drive said speakers - reduces cost, space, and cooling requirements for the room.
  • Each viewer can have their own EQ settings depending on their hearing / preference. For example, grandpa can have more high frequency boost without making 8 year old Jenny's ears bleed. Or Mom can boost the left channel to compensate for her partial hearing loss in that ear. Nephew may like concert volume level while others prefer more mild sound. And best of all, wife can now ask all the questions she insists are just rhetorical anyway without bothering me.

Downside is you have to wear headphones. I don't care for imaging with standard content, but when specifically encoded for headphones its not as bad. By tricking your brain into hearing the sound away from your ears, out in 3D space, the fact that you are wearing headphones becomes less obvious. Like the way glasses disappear when looking through them. This demo illustrates what I am talking about (listen with headphones) http://www.qsound.com/demos/virtualbarbershop_short.htm

 

 

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post #42 of 50 Old 07-22-2013, 01:39 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mfusick View Post

So I've been researching and reading, and researching, and reading some more- and one thing that always stands out to me is some people seem to have unlimited budgets on HT gear and electronics.

I see products that costs thousand and thousands of dollars, more than my entire build is being budgeted to cost me. The room and theaters' look so plain and generally crappy.

I guess if could be up to the threads one reads and if one looks at other places too... My view of AVS seems rather the opposite, people are doing huge jobs with their rooms and then not putting so much effort into speaker choice and placement. More often it seems more of interest to hide speakers than getting the best sound from them?

Now, the percentage of acoustic treatments will be higher the smaller the budget is as you cannot really cut down on it if it's to be of any use.

I'm not anywhere near being done with the building myself, but my current percentages are Speakers 60%, Electronics 10%, Chairs/screen 10%, Acoustics/sound proofing 20%
I expect it to go to at least Speakers 50% acoustics/soundproofing 30% before I'm done though.... speakers are all in hand today and they are all bought 2nd hand or they'd cost way more... $20k was passed a long time ago...I would have had to skip speakers entirely to make that budget....biggrin.gif

Under construction: the Larch theater
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post #43 of 50 Old 07-24-2013, 10:28 AM
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Originally Posted by macfan View Post

What world do you live in where you don't consider a $400,000 house high end? Gees, I paid $65,500 for mine. You must consider it a shack.

Well it's just regional differences. I'm in MN and the town I live in, the price to build during the boom years started at 600k for a basic house and the smallest legal lot size of 1/4 acre. These 400k houses were thrown up quick with no style crammed together just before the real boom years. Now the difference with the faltering economy is that you can build a basic house for maybe just under $500k and they are as basic as ever but these 400k houses are worth a lot less than the 400k or slightly more when resold in the boom years that everyone paid. My very first house I bought as a sophomore in college in the mid 1990's was more than 65K. A "nice" new build in my mind is at minimum $700k and even then you are sacrificing a lot. I think that we aren't all in the same place financially either and have a different paradigm.

Oh and we just can't compare Canada to the United States. They have a substantially different mindset and governmental system than the U.S. They don't mind paying substantially higher taxes than the half of the U.S. does (since only half of us here in the U.S. pay any net income taxes).
They are apples and oranges.
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post #44 of 50 Old 07-24-2013, 04:27 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nightlord View Post

I guess if could be up to the threads one reads and if one looks at other places too... My view of AVS seems rather the opposite, people are doing huge jobs with their rooms and then not putting so much effort into speaker choice and placement. More often it seems more of interest to hide speakers than getting the best sound from them?

Now, the percentage of acoustic treatments will be higher the smaller the budget is as you cannot really cut down on it if it's to be of any use.

I'm not anywhere near being done with the building myself, but my current percentages are Speakers 60%, Electronics 10%, Chairs/screen 10%, Acoustics/sound proofing 20%
I expect it to go to at least Speakers 50% acoustics/soundproofing 30% before I'm done though.... speakers are all in hand today and they are all bought 2nd hand or they'd cost way more... $20k was passed a long time ago...I would have had to skip speakers entirely to make that budget....biggrin.gif

I can see your flip side. Interesting.

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post #45 of 50 Old 07-24-2013, 06:23 PM
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Originally Posted by chirpie View Post

Find out the location. A million dollar home in parts of San Diego would look like crap next to my 200k home in Olathe, KS. But of course, you're paying for the weather, not just the house. ;-)

Nice to see Olathe is still reasonably priced! With the high speed Google internet in Kansas City the area is looking more attractive. I lived in Olathe when I joined the Navy 15 yrs ago, 5 yrs from now I may move back. Housing prices are a driving factor in where I relocate. I want a full Monty home theater in a nice house, that rules out a lot of locations.

I may be the exception, I want a very well designed and functional space (full sound treatments, etc) but I don't want the "theater" look. I want understated looks with full peformance.

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post #46 of 50 Old 07-24-2013, 07:33 PM
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Originally Posted by NWCgrad View Post

Nice to see Olathe is still reasonably priced! With the high speed Google internet in Kansas City the area is looking more attractive. I lived in Olathe when I joined the Navy 15 yrs ago, 5 yrs from now I may move back. Housing prices are a driving factor in where I relocate. I want a full Monty home theater in a nice house, that rules out a lot of locations.

I may be the exception, I want a very well designed and functional space (full sound treatments, etc) but I don't want the "theater" look. I want understated looks with full peformance.

We'll be happy to have you back. ;-)
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post #47 of 50 Old 08-01-2013, 11:51 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NWCgrad View Post

I may be the exception, I want a very well designed and functional space (full sound treatments, etc) but I don't want the "theater" look. I want understated looks with full peformance.

I guess we make two exceptions then. smile.gif

Under construction: the Larch theater
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post #48 of 50 Old 08-02-2013, 05:42 AM - Thread Starter
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I was more thinking its wasteful to spend so much on gear without proper sound treatment and room design.

I wasn't judging looks or aesthetics

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post #49 of 50 Old 08-02-2013, 12:24 PM
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Originally Posted by Mfusick View Post

I was more thinking its wasteful to spend so much on gear without proper sound treatment and room design.

I got that, and fundamentally I agree. But there is a level where the room can't lift a poor speaker any further too.

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post #50 of 50 Old 08-02-2013, 01:31 PM
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We just bought a new house that has a finished room in the basement that is 22' x 32'. The room had a wicked echo that made bass super boomy. I added twelve acoustic panels on the wall and the sound is so much improved than before the panels. I am planning on doing more acoustic treatment when I my wife isn't looking...smile.gif
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