Hello all! I'm new here but have been researching home theaters night and day for a couple of months now. I'll be posting more questions about my upcoming build, but for now, I'm wondering about building a niche for my AVR and related equipment.
My first observation is that it seems like nearly everyone goes with a rackmount system instead of a niche. I assume that's because the higher-end equipment is rackmountable and it looks more "professional" than a niche. Nothing I'm buying is rackmountable, though.
Here is what I'm planning on building, so please feel free to offer advice before I start cutting into the wall. The niche will be built on the back wall of the theater and measure somewhere around 4' tall by 2' wide by 2' deep extending into open attic space. It may not come out exactly like that, but those are nice round numbers to work with. Needs to be wide and deep enough to fit any AVR or future piece of equipment I may want, and I think I have that covered. Construction will be 2x4 framing and textured drywall to match the rest of the room. The sides will have plywood outside of the drywall for extra strength for supporting shelves. Niche will be framed with decorative casing and crown molding on the top.
Shelves will be custom glass, probably four or five to hold AVR (probably top shelf), PS3, PS4, Dish Joey, WAP, maybe some blu-rays. I'd like to install one under-cabinet recessed light into the top and mounted towards the front to shine down through to glass shelves. I'm planning on installing a light switch with dimmer next to the niche for control.
The bottom of the niche will be a false floor extending an addition foot down, so the actual niche cavity will be 5' tall. Under the false floor is where I plan to hide all the wiring. This will include a 7.1 three-gang wall plate, electrical outlet, and two-gang wall plate for ethernet. A surge protector will hide down in here, too.
I'd like to keep the wiring as clean as possible, and so far the best I've come up with is installing a grommet in the drywall at the back of each shelf. The only downside is that I'd have to go into the attic any time I needed to make a modification to poke the cable back in, but I'm hoping that won't be often.
The niche protruding into the attic will be wrapped in batting insulation. I'm hoping I can get away with not having any forced cooling for the equipment with this plan so long as I don't put a door on the front (I don't plan to) and I wanted some thoughts on that.
So that's what I have so far. Please feel free to offer advice, suggest changes, or anything that will help with a clean look. Or if I'm totally off on one of my ideas, please let me know. Thanks for any help!