Tanner Ridge Cinema Construction Thread - Page 9 - AVS Forum
Forum Jump: 
 1Likes
Reply
 
Thread Tools
post #241 of 361 Old 02-04-2008, 04:45 AM
AVS Special Member
 
chinadog's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2004
Location: Knoxville, TN
Posts: 5,481
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 24
Tom, panels look great. I have not had any issues with my IR543, but I bought the IR543AH, which gives you the additional house codes (and costs lots more). The quality of the X10 switches makes a difference for sure. I'm curious how you Insteon conversation will go if you go that route. The only probably I had with my switches is an occasional lose of X10 address, typically in a thunderstorm, since they don't have a hard address dial on them. Only happened twice though.

Bud
chinadog is offline  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
post #242 of 361 Old 02-04-2008, 07:21 AM
Advanced Member
 
Wazzey's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2004
Location: Indiana
Posts: 665
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 11
Tom never ceases to amaze.... Rack looks great. I can see more thievery in my future.

Mike's attempt at a Theater

DIY motorized masking system

"Name?" Shropshire Slasher
"Occupation?" Shropshire Slasher
Wazzey is offline  
post #243 of 361 Old 02-04-2008, 09:49 AM - Thread Starter
Senior Member
 
YW84U's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Location: Victoria, BC
Posts: 348
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 14
Quote:
Originally Posted by chinadog View Post

Tom, panels look great. I have not had any issues with my IR543, but I bought the IR543AH, which gives you the additional house codes (and costs lots more). The quality of the X10 switches makes a difference for sure. I'm curious how you Insteon conversation will go if you go that route. The only probably I had with my switches is an occasional lose of X10 address, typically in a thunderstorm, since they don't have a hard address dial on them. Only happened twice though.

Bud


Hey Bud - as for the X10, it was 99% reliable upon first install, but then suddenly dropped right off. I have all 3 dimmers programmed with an X10 address, as well as each one is also linked with a KPL via Insteon (different phase as ell). What happened, was only one dimmer (screen cans) would reliably respond to the IR543, and the others would not....sometimes, a command for light 3 would not work, then a command issued right afterwards to light 1 would cause light 3 to come on. Very inconsistent! I thought it was the 543, as it seemed to have developed a slight 'buzzing noise' from inside. With the new one, I noticed it buzzes as well, and has a slight 'hot electronic' odor .

I did factory resets of all the switches, re-linked them, and the behavior remains. I also tried an RF keypad with an x10 module, and still note the same behavior (light 2 100% accuracy, 1 and 3 barely respond if ever). Different housecodes were also tried but to no avail....nothing changed electrically in the house, and the 543 is on the same circuit as the dimmers with only about 10 feet of wire between them. Quite strange! It could be that two of the three dimmers are not happy x10 customers, or that now the switches are broken in, that they have evolved into x10 signal suckers....

However, the KPL using Insteon has been bang-on for the entire install, which leads me to believe that the protocol works better in my situation. My crux is that the IRLinc at $99 being released (Soon?) may provide a better Insteon-based solution for the theater lights....but....I like to dabble with HA, and have been thinking of deploying more Insteon switches in other locations in the house sometime down the road. If that is the case, I think the ISY with an extended PLM may be the way to go. I don't want to drop $99 on the IRLinc now, and then spend more on the ISY later thus making the IRLinc redundant (the ISY is only a couple hundred more). The other option I'm considering is to get a PLM, software, and IRLinc to perform the IR duties - but I'm not sure that there's software yet able to deal with the IRLinc, leaving me to revert back to X10 triggers via the 543 for Insteon events for now...

Part of me just thinks that I'm better in the long run to stick to only Insteon, and take a good look at the ISY99ir. I'm hesitant to do this right away, seeing as the extended PLM is new, and I don't want to risk having to replace it as they work out any firmware bugs.....

Decisions, decisions....
YW84U is offline  
post #244 of 361 Old 02-04-2008, 10:11 AM
AVS Special Member
 
bass addict's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2003
Location: A padded room
Posts: 3,784
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 16 Post(s)
Liked: 211
I would also echo the fact that my Insteon setup has been flawless. It has been slowly taking over the whole house with nary a hickup. The desktop linc, while not perfect, is a lifesaver when programming multiple scenes. I can tell you from experience that the keypad linc's don't like static electricity. The air has been pretty dry lately and I went to turn on the lights and a 1/4" bolt shocked the crap out of me, while killing the keypad linc at the same time. Unfortunately whatever is linked to the keypad linc goes down with it.

Achievement Unlocked

Psychotic Episode Averted

bass addict is offline  
post #245 of 361 Old 02-04-2008, 07:01 PM - Thread Starter
Senior Member
 
YW84U's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Location: Victoria, BC
Posts: 348
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 14
Quote:
Originally Posted by bass addict View Post

I would also echo the fact that my Insteon setup has been flawless. It has been slowly taking over the whole house with nary a hickup. .

Thanks bass addict - I find that reassuring that others have had good success with it . It's good to hear positive or constructive experiences about HA stuff - usually, most of the people who post about these sorts of things are usually negative (bugs, axes to grind and such). I've found mine far more reliable than the x10 I used to dabble with over the last few years too. Mind you, there are other HA solutions out there, but I find they are priced just a little beyond my reach to justify the expense! Plus, each of the SH experiences I've had with either RMA or their support have been nothing less than professional and prompt.
YW84U is offline  
post #246 of 361 Old 02-16-2008, 10:41 PM - Thread Starter
Senior Member
 
YW84U's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Location: Victoria, BC
Posts: 348
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 14
Well, I finished off the rack faceplates this weekend :yay:. After some consideration, I opted not to make a vented panel for the bottom, although I had picked up some steel mesh in anticipation...

Here is the final product :





I still may make a vented panel later on down the road, but I think I'll see what the temps and airflow are like for now. I thought just a blank panel left it 'cleaner' looking . I left the bottom one about 5" wide, although I think it may have looked a little better if I had broken up the space with two panels perhaps.

All in all, it took a little more work, but I think the process was fun and rewarding!

Next step - figure out a handrail for the stairs....I'm thinking something aluminum and/or black powder coated? So far, I haven't seen any wooden ones that I want to put up just yet - plus, I'd like to keep it dark or black, and am unsure how stain or paint would hold up over time...

Cheers,
YW84U is offline  
post #247 of 361 Old 02-17-2008, 07:33 PM
AVS Special Member
 
W00lly's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: NEBRASKA
Posts: 2,201
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 2 Post(s)
Liked: 21
I wonder if you could find someone to press cut louvers into a panel like they do on a car hoods.

Scott

The CopperFields Cinema

          Current Photo's

W00lly is offline  
post #248 of 361 Old 02-17-2008, 08:14 PM
Member
 
AccessHA's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2006
Location: Motorcity
Posts: 141
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 10
Quote:
Originally Posted by YW84U View Post

I'd played with X10 before, but can definitely say that the Insteon protocol seems far more reliable. I see that Universal Devices is putting out Betas for their new ISY 99IR (an improved IR version of the ISY-26). Although pricey for what I want, I wonder if that would be the route to go if you wanted to integrate more HA around the house? Seems as though Insteon is finally getting a bit more momentum with available devices - I hope a cheap IR solution is around the corner!

If you need a hand programming, feel free to give me a shout! Not an expert, but I'm always willing to share my follies

Great thread and a beautiful theater.

We've been using an ISY-99i/IR Pro for a few weeks now and must say we are highly impressed. It's one of those products you feel comfortable recommending to any Insteon user. If you’ve ever struggled with links, scenes, ramp-rates, or on-levels… this is the solution. We will be posting a full review shortly.
AccessHA is offline  
post #249 of 361 Old 02-18-2008, 02:45 AM
AVS Special Member
 
Tedd's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2001
Location: Ontario
Posts: 3,902
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 37 Post(s)
Liked: 63
Having louvers done is not a cheap thing. Why not just ebay a MA vented panel or two and paint to match, to finish up? There's several styles available.
Tedd is online now  
post #250 of 361 Old 02-18-2008, 07:58 PM - Thread Starter
Senior Member
 
YW84U's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Location: Victoria, BC
Posts: 348
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 14
W00lly / Tedd - Both great suggestions (and time-saving ). So far though, I'm kind of sold on the 'blank' look for now. There also exists a possibility that I might slap the kids' Xbox 360 permanently in the bottom in the future as well, so I'm probably going to hold off on the vent idea for the time being. Aww heck, I'll probably change my mind again next week.....

Quote:
Originally Posted by AccessHA View Post


We've been using an ISY-99i/IR Pro for a few weeks now and must say we are highly impressed. It's one of those products you feel comfortable recommending to any Insteon user. If you’ve ever struggled with links, scenes, ramp-rates, or on-levels… this is the solution. We will be posting a full review shortly.

AccessHA - I've been to the 'forum of which you speak' , and have been following along already . I'm looking forward to more end-user reviews, especially of the newer PLM that came out recently. I'm worried that the Comms problems will still be an issue with the new one (although, it seems some report the lockups are resolved). I'm leaning more towards the 99ir with each passing week, although, for only a few devices now it is pure overkill - but I'm almost certain that HA is akin to HT in that 'expansion is always inevitable'......What are your thoughts on going down the ISY road? Any input is greatly appreciated!
YW84U is offline  
post #251 of 361 Old 02-18-2008, 08:56 PM
Member
 
AccessHA's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2006
Location: Motorcity
Posts: 141
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 10
Tom,

Thanks for stopping by the forum!

I currently have the newer PLM connected to the ISY-99i and so far, fingers crossed, no lock ups to date.

As for the ISY-99i, I plan to post a complete review in the upcoming weeks. Once I got a handle around UDI’s naming conventions and how certain features worked, it’s been a dream. It’s one of the first products that have allowed me to take full advantage of everything Insteon is capable of. The user interface is a no frills affair but it’s simple to navigate and easy to use. It’s a matter of dragging-and-dropping for most tasks. If you only have a few Insteon devices, it’s probably overkill. If you expand, I would highly recommend evaluating it. It takes all the guess work and frustration out of setting up links, on-levels, ramp-rates, scenes, etc. I would say for anyone with over 20 Insteon devices, it’s a must have.

“HA is akin to HT” You hit the nail on the head, it’s definitely a slippery slope my friend. Once you get the bug… there is no turning back.
AccessHA is offline  
post #252 of 361 Old 03-23-2008, 10:14 AM
Advanced Member
 
jayoldschool's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2007
Posts: 871
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 11
Tom,

just wanted to pop in and congratulate you for your efforts. I found this thread from the "Screen" thread, and have read every word. Your room looks incredible, and I really appreciate the work you have done yourself.

I hope you don't mind that I am going to steal lots of your ideas!

I have been reading posts non-stop for a few weeks, and I think I am at the point where I will take some pics and start a thread. The more I read, the more questions I come up with...

Now, to think of a cool theater name...

Jason in Ottawa
jayoldschool is offline  
post #253 of 361 Old 03-25-2008, 10:07 PM - Thread Starter
Senior Member
 
YW84U's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Location: Victoria, BC
Posts: 348
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 14
Quote:
Originally Posted by jayoldschool View Post

The more I read, the more questions I come up with...

Me Too!

You should start a thread - I found that it serves as a perfect 'sandbox' for putting out ideas and obtaining valuable feedback! As for a name, maybe 'Oldschool Cinemas'? I found the naming thing one of the more difficult aspects of the whole build

As for thread updates and other postings - now that Spring has arrived, I've been distracted with other 'tasks', so not much has happened on the HT front lately. Still thinking about the ISY while shoveling bark mulch, but have yet to pull the trigger on it . Still have yet to source out a handrail as well.....maybe if I stretch it out, I can then truly say I'm 'never finished'?

The only thing I've done other than the usual movie-watching is add in a UPS for the PJ:



I put an APC 550VA 330 Watt UPS solely to offer some protection from the outages the area seems to periodically suffer. It's not huge, but it should hold it long enough for it to auto-power off after 5 mins of no input signal from the source components.

On another note, I think I've found another good reason to support building your own HT:

http://www.canada.com/theprovince/ne...af48e5&k=82647

Recently, over 100+ cars were keyed at a Silver City Cineplex where I used to go. To top it off, there was another huge quantity of cars keyed again just the other day at a local community center and restaurants It's a shame that idiots like that ruin a nice night out at the show......

Cheers,
YW84U is offline  
post #254 of 361 Old 03-26-2008, 07:06 AM
Advanced Member
 
jayoldschool's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2007
Posts: 871
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 11
Quote:
Originally Posted by YW84U View Post

Me Too!

You should start a thread - I found that it serves as a perfect 'sandbox' for putting out ideas and obtaining valuable feedback! As for a name, maybe 'Oldschool Cinemas'? I found the naming thing one of the more difficult aspects of the whole build

Actually, after I posted above, I got to work! May I present the Birchgrove Cinema. Feel free to give me opinions, good and bad...
jayoldschool is offline  
post #255 of 361 Old 04-04-2008, 07:23 PM
Senior Member
 
MarkDub's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2005
Location: Memphis, TN
Posts: 236
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 10
Tom,
I just wanted to say your HT has turned out great. THANKS for the detailed posts. I have to admit I have gone through everything and added quite a bit of notes and pics to my project folder - starting my own build (2.0) soon.

Mark
______________________________________________
Oh...Johnny, I apologize; I forgot you were there. You may go now.
Dub Theater HT Build In Progress
MarkDub is offline  
post #256 of 361 Old 05-11-2008, 11:02 AM
Member
 
Choots's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2005
Location: Apple Valley, MN and Calgary, AB
Posts: 92
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 10
Hi there, from a fellow Canuck who advocates DIY whenever possible. Great looking job! I wish I had the focus to get my theatre done half as quickly as you've moved on yours. It really looks good, from the carpeting and acoustic panels, to the light system, from the rack to the cabling job, you've done nice work here.

Would you mind describing in detail the process you used to determine the size/shape of openings in the rack panels you made? I'm looking for ideas on how to do this quickly and accurately, so I'd like to hear how you approached it. Also, did you try to standardize the overall panel height and screw spacings as much as possible, to allow you to reorganize the order of the components in your rack, over time as you changed things out?

How did you decide how much of the front of any component to expose beyond the plane of the panel. (I love being able to work palindromes into the same sentence!)

Thanks,
Peter
Choots is offline  
post #257 of 361 Old 05-15-2008, 03:11 PM
Advanced Member
 
DevonS's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: Regina, SK, Canada
Posts: 592
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 12
Very, VERY nice. I stumbled upon your A/V rack build and started in on this thread. As many others have stated, I believe I'll be borrowing some of the info. I love the face plates. I have to go back a few pages and look at what you did for your IR stuff, but it's Thrusday, the long weekend awaits and it's gonna be a beautiful weekend on the prairies, so I'm outta here till Tuesday.

Built on a tight budget: The Cheap Seats Cinema
DevonS is offline  
post #258 of 361 Old 05-18-2008, 07:04 AM - Thread Starter
Senior Member
 
YW84U's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Location: Victoria, BC
Posts: 348
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 14
Quote:
Originally Posted by Choots View Post

Would you mind describing in detail the process you used to determine the size/shape of openings in the rack panels you made? Also, did you try to standardize the overall panel height and screw spacings as much as possible, to allow you to reorganize the order of the components in your rack, over time as you changed things out? How did you decide how much of the front of any component to expose beyond the plane of the panel...

Hi Peter! I'll try and describe the process as best I can:

First, I thought I would mention that when I roughed in the framing, I had made an opening around 20", with a plan to use 1/2" board to trim out the inside width - this was so that the faceplate screws would have a good edge to bite into. Looking back at it now, I would have opted to frame a little bigger, to allow for maybe a 3/4 or 1" board, as I did find that when it came time to pilot the faceplate holes, there was very little wiggle room between the washers and the side of the molding. It still worked, but it was a little tight.

Anyways, for the plates, my process went something like this: I first spaced the components visually as equal as possible by adjusting the shelf brackets. Starting with the top plate first (just like tiling a floor, and working off of a 'starter tile') I would measure from the top of the opening down to the top edge of the next component. I would then measure the space between the bottom of the first component and the top of the next, split the difference, and subtract that from the first measurement to determine the overall height of the panel.

Next, I would cut the blank from the metal stock, at 19" wide by whatever the required height was



I would then take the width measurement of the component, mark the center of the plate, and again split the difference on the center to try and keep the component as centered as possible relative to the plate. Next, I would measure the distance from the top edge of the component to the top edge of the plate, as well as measure the overall height of the component from it's face. Where you take that measurement will determine as to how far out the component will protrude from the plate - for example, my Sony's have a bit of a tapered front, so I measured things based on it sticking out just enough so that the top, bottom and side edges of it were likely to sit flush with the plate. I would just eyeball the side profile of each component, and figure out how much of it's face would protrude beyond the plane of the plate, and just go with that rather than trying to make them all perfectly equal. They all seemed to stick out about 1/2 at the end of the day

Anyway, after tracing it out on the blank, I would use the jigsaw to cut just to the inside of each traced line - so that I wouldn't accidentally make the opening too big . I would lightly sand/chamfer the opening edges (to prevent marring the component) and take it down for a test fit:



From there, I could determine if everything was relatively centered, and make any minor adjustments to the opening. This was accomplished by just removing more aluminum using a flat file and/or taking off minor amounts with the jigsaw. Sometimes it would take two or three test fits to get it right, but I was being particular about how much tolerance I would leave. As for adjustments, if the component seemed to sit too low, I was planning on placing shims under the feet to raise it up and keep the spacings more visually equal. I lucked out, and found that the shelf brackets did a good job of keeping them relatively spaced.

For the screw spacings, I made up a template for drilling, that would give the the holes consistent distances to each corner. The middle hole, if there was to be one, would just be based on the midway mark between the two outer ones.

For the next panel, I would just repeat the process, measuring from the bottom of the first plate and so forth. I found that most panels would work out to about either 4 or 7 inches in height. As for future replacement, most equipment seems to be similar in dimensions, give or take a few inches, so I plan to just pop out whatever is being swapped, remove the plate, and remeasure a plate based on what space is available. The whole process didn't take too long - maybe about an hour each, and I found it kind of fun to try and see if I could machine them really tight! Your mileage on the fun-ometer may vary, though

There was some discussion back and forth in the DIY Rack Thread from a while ago where I describe a bit about the tools and materials used for the plates as well

http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showt...7#post13047227

I hope this helps! I never before realized how tricky it is to explain something with just text - now I know why some of the user manuals for our gear seem so hard to understand!!

It was challenging at times, but I did find it one of the more rewarding parts of the project.

Cheers,
YW84U is offline  
post #259 of 361 Old 05-18-2008, 07:22 AM - Thread Starter
Senior Member
 
YW84U's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Location: Victoria, BC
Posts: 348
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 14
Quote:
Originally Posted by DevonS View Post

...... the long weekend awaits and it's gonna be a beautiful weekend on the prairies, so I'm outta here till Tuesday.

Thank you for the kind words DevonS! Yup, it's tough to keep plugging away on the HT when the weather finally works out for a long weekend .

I've been remiss and not really updated in a while, but have still been fiddling here and there. I did end up installing the ISY99IRPro to control the Intseon stuff, and intend to post some of my experiences with it here shortly

Cheers,

Tom
YW84U is offline  
post #260 of 361 Old 05-21-2008, 06:41 AM
AVS Special Member
 
cobolisdead's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2007
Location: Prattville, AL
Posts: 1,960
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 2 Post(s)
Liked: 13
Excellent build!

Quis custodiet ipsos custodes?
cobolisdead is offline  
post #261 of 361 Old 05-21-2008, 03:10 PM
Advanced Member
 
DevonS's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: Regina, SK, Canada
Posts: 592
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 12
Quote:
Originally Posted by YW84U View Post

one time, I stumbled into the Acoustic Treatments Master thread and had to be pulled out by Search & Rescue after I was reported missing and overdue by the Mrs...

I had the same mis-adventure. That thread made me feel like I should pack up my A/V equipment and go buy a 14" black and white TV again because I was too dumb to follow along.

Built on a tight budget: The Cheap Seats Cinema
DevonS is offline  
post #262 of 361 Old 05-27-2008, 11:14 PM - Thread Starter
Senior Member
 
YW84U's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Location: Victoria, BC
Posts: 348
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 14
Well, it's been a while since I updated any progress on the HT - and for want of not getting 'Loganed' , I felt compelled to at least put something here!

Now begins the foray into Home Automation

I opted to replace the X10 lighting controls with the Universal Devices ISY99IR Pro - is it a small, Linux-based controller that is nearly a God-send to anyone who uses Insteon and/or X10:

One ISY to run the show (not in it's permanent location yet BTW):


One PLM Modem to provide comms over the AC:


For those who haven't used Insteon, it is the 'newer' X10 - in that it controls switches, outlets and such using data over existing AC powerlines. The bonus over X10, is that the communications are more robust, and allow for rebroadcasting of data as well as an 'ACK' or acknowledgment of receipt. I've played with X10 over the years for things like Christmas lights and so forth, but never really found it reliable enough to venture too far with it. I first started with a few Insteon switches to run the lighting for the HT (as mentioned in earlier posts), but found the X10 side of controlling them a little too basic and sometimes flaky. I wanted to be able to get more out of my switches - varying ramp rates, scenes etc while still maintaining IR control via my Harmony remote. Now, I know there are some that have had troubles with Insteon - I too have had to iron out some bugs here and there, but nothing major or anything I would consider a deal-breaker. I did initially look at other alternatives such as Zwave, UPB, but settled with this route due to costs. I have champagne tastes on a beer budget, plus I love to tinker

Anyway, the device itself it quite small, no bigger than a cable modem. Hookup was dead easy - Cat5 to the PLM for comms and providing power to the ISY, and another Cat5 to one of my routers. With UPnP on the router enabled, the ISY shows up via a Javascript Window once you invoke the icon now listed in My Network Places, or you can get at it through a web browser:




On the main interface (PS - you can telnet into ISY as well if you are feeling Linux-y and want to tinker), you have a myriad of options - first off, is that linking devices together is now so painless! No more 'tap-tap', run around the house, 'tap-tap', run back.....you simply add the Hex Address for the device in, and then simply drag-and-drop it into various scenes you create with other devices.

Here is a screen cap of my Screen Can Lights - ramp rates and such are achieved by adjusting the sliders. The adjustments are far more refined than setting them locally with the paddle method:



For the HT, I set up a scene with a Keypadlinc Button 'B' running as the controller. I then placed the screen cans and the sconces into the scene, and tweaked the on levels and ramp rates to taste. On the IR side, I installed one of my IR repeater flashers onto the receiver for the ISY, and programmed the Harmony with some Phillips TV Codes (for RC5 compatibility). Voila! A button press of the Harmony triggers the KPL button and brings the lights up/down. To geek out a little further, I programmed the Harmony so that a Sequence is invoked when you hit 'Play' - the DVD starts, then the lights all dim a few seconds later including the lighting at the outside entry to the theater about 8 seconds after that. I've set up similar programs for 'Stop' (lights on) as well as 'Pause'. The nice thing is, that I have ISY monitor the status of all of the lights, so that the KPL buttons now light up and properly follow the status of each associated light, which I couldn't do with just the X10. Here's a screen cap of the program I use so far to control the HT lighting:



All of the programming works on conditional statements; the beauty of it is that your imagination is the limiting factor. You can trigger events by IR, time, switch presses...the list goes on. You can also control ISY via Web using a PC or your mobile device. This is kinda 'My First Program', so no doubt, I'll be changing it again once I learn a bit more about conditionals!

For fits and giggles, I set up a test so that anyone going into the theater 'double-tapping' the sconce light switch would then cause the sconces and screen cans to go 'fast-on' - plus, the ISY would then send an Email to my Blackberry advising of the status change. Easy to tell what the kids are doing after school

I'm still tinkering around with various combinations of triggers and events, but have to say that I'm very impressed with the potential of the unit. If you were only controlling a few lights, the ISY would be complete and utter overkill.....but when I deployed the first switches in the HT, it was with a view towards automating other parts of the home - and that's where this device fits in. I'm putting in the odd switch here and there - sort of a 'piecemeal' method of expansion as I figure out more things to try with it (very addictive, actually ). Also, I believe there is development plans for an ISY for ZWave and UPB as well, which may perhaps be of interest to those here in the forums that have deployed those systems in their HT/house.

I hope you find some of my observations of value; I'm still in the green stages of learning all of the programming and tweaks, but am happy to answer any questions as best I can.

Cheers,
YW84U is offline  
post #263 of 361 Old 05-29-2008, 07:41 AM
Member
 
DapperDanMan's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2007
Posts: 105
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 10
Hi Tom,

Awesome thread! It's been a severe time waster for me over the past couple of days. You're an excellent planner, builder, documenter, and writer. I skimmed a couple of the pages so maybe I missed it, but have you posted anything about your experience with the theater? Build threads aren't fully satisfying to me without at least one detailed post about enjoying the (nearly) finished project.

Thanks in advance!

I don't want FOP, *********! I'm a Dapper Dan man!
DapperDanMan is offline  
post #264 of 361 Old 06-13-2008, 08:56 PM
Advanced Member
 
DevonS's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: Regina, SK, Canada
Posts: 592
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 12
Quote:
Originally Posted by YW84U View Post

I ordered up my IR solution - ended up going with the Hot Link Pro from Microsmith, along with the extension kit.

Thanks to your write-up about this IR setup, I'm likely going to follow your lead. I was just wondering where you ordered from? I found the main unit and extender on Flea-bay, but out of the U.S. and it always seems to be a crapshoot if you're gonna get dinged for something at the border (or 'brokerage' from UPS )

Built on a tight budget: The Cheap Seats Cinema
DevonS is offline  
post #265 of 361 Old 06-14-2008, 10:33 PM - Thread Starter
Senior Member
 
YW84U's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Location: Victoria, BC
Posts: 348
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 14
Quote:
Originally Posted by DevonS View Post

I was just wondering where you ordered from? I found the main unit and extender on Flea-bay, but out of the U.S. and it always seems to be a crapshoot if you're gonna get dinged for something at the border (or 'brokerage' from UPS )

I ordered if from here:

http://avdeals.ca/microsmith/microsm..._extenders.htm

they are Canadian, and it's actually the same dealer I purchased the PJ from. I've found their service very good and have never had any difficulties. The price is nearly on par with the US pricing, and you can avoid those nasty UPS brokerage fees (boy did I get dinged when I imported the LED step-lights!!! No more UPS for me ).

I'm extremely happy with the Microsmith product - never had a miss in all the time it's been up and running. I also believe that the extender kit would be far easier than trying to extend the wiring in any sort of DIY fashion - it's fairly quick and easy.

Good luck on your install, and feel free to give me a shout if you have any questions!

Cheers,

Tom
YW84U is offline  
post #266 of 361 Old 06-14-2008, 11:38 PM - Thread Starter
Senior Member
 
YW84U's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Location: Victoria, BC
Posts: 348
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 14
Quote:
Originally Posted by DapperDanMan View Post

....have you posted anything about your experience with the theater? Build threads aren't fully satisfying to me without at least one detailed post about enjoying the (nearly) finished project.

Thanks in advance!

Okay, you stumped me!!

Never really thought about putting down the 'experience' before you mentioned it....ummm, let's see.......

um....

okay this is difficult, but I'll give 'er a whirl:

The HT has alway been a big part of our family time together - even from our last place, it has become tradition to have 'Friday Night Movie Nights'. All of us pile down there to enjoy a rental or something from our shelf, lots of popcorn and food that likely kills lab mice, and curl up together to get lost in a (hopefully) good story. With this current implementation, it is far easier to get 'lost' in the film since there is no external distractions (we leave the phones upstairs) and the audio/visual is far more immersive compared to our last version. I think it's a wonderful place to spend time with the kids - you know where they are as opposed to being out with friends doing only who-knows-what . On many weekends, they'll have friends over for Xbox parties and/or sleepovers - it's always a big hit with all of them, especially when they get to crank it up and have the gunshots rumble the bass shakers! I think the theatrical 'experience' provided by a dedicated room surely helps bring you into the story or the game in a far different manner than a 21" CRT in a busy family room, and serves as a escape from the day-to-day trials and tribulations we all face.....

Not long ago, the boys and I watched Ghandi - we had wonderful conversations about the story for days afterwards (their favorite new word is 'perspective' ), which I though was pretty great seeing as two teenage boys usually prefer action movies Transformers is still near the top of their favorites list, although even oldies like Karate Kid or the Indiana Jones flicks keep them rivited. They feel very fortunate to have such a unique retreat, and have been supportive an appreciative of all of the work that went into it...to me, things such as this have made the journey more than 'worth it'. Plus, when the WAF or kids trundle a new guest through, the HT is always the first tour stop - complete with technical explanations - and for that fleeting moment, it helps me see past the mistakes and compromises I made in putting it together and feel a small sense of accomplishment. Then it goes away again, and I start plotting some new change or modification in the never ending search for audio/video nirvana

We haven't been in there near as much lately, seemingly due to the furious pace of everyday life and other outside activities come the summer months. But towards the fall and winter, useage usually picks up as the outdoors becomes less inviting . From time to time, we invite friends and family over to spend time catching the shows. Every so often, if there's a flick that's newly released or generates a lot of interest, we'll print up 'tickets' and host a big get-together with pre-movie shows and the whole shebang - it's truly enjoyable to share the experience with a larger crowd. We even hosted a Christmas slide show for the WAF's coworkers last year, and it was pretty neat to have 20+ people gathered together there for a DVD we made of their 'Year in Review'.

On another note, I'm actually almost 'sad' that the build is nearing the finish line....you start to miss hitting the major milestones - sitting staring at blank drywall in a folding chair, bleeding on framing.....I'm sure many AVSers go through the same sort of 'empty nest' feelings when it starts to wind down..... Mind you, there are always plenty of tweaks and minor changes or upgrades that can be made as time goes on, so I suppose that none of us are ever 'truly' finished

Phew!

I hope that didn't miss the mark too much! I truly appreciate the kind words, and am humbled by the interest people have showed in my thread

Thank you

Tom
YW84U is offline  
post #267 of 361 Old 06-15-2008, 06:53 PM
AVS Special Member
 
tony123's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2002
Location: Upstate, South Carolina
Posts: 4,994
Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 3 Post(s)
Liked: 25
Tom, panels look great! and I'll be stealing that idea.

I thoroughly enjoyed your last post. Thanks to DapperDanMan for asking the question.

We get so wrapped up in the technical segment of the hobby, that sometimes we forget about the "experience". If I were asked what one element in our room I could not live without, it would be the people that are filling it. You chose just the right words to describe my thoughts. What a wonderful hobby. It may be one of the few that can offer an individual so much while still being a family hit!

Maybe a "show me" thread should be started for photos of the family enjoying the room?

The "Twinseltown" Theater
Construction Thread
tony123 is offline  
post #268 of 361 Old 07-14-2008, 03:21 PM
AVS Special Member
 
kjlewie's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2008
Location: Marion, Iowa
Posts: 1,013
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 8 Post(s)
Liked: 26
Tom,

Do you have any pictures of your riser and riser step build? I'd like to do something similar for a 10" tall 8.5' W by 6.5' D riser. Still intrigued by how much I like the green paint job. I didn't think I liked green in the theater until I saw yours. Very nice.

kjlewie

Clearly, I'm a man of action - just give me a few minutes to think about it.
Lewis Family Cinema 1.0

Lewis Family Cinema 2.0
kjlewie is offline  
post #269 of 361 Old 07-16-2008, 09:22 PM - Thread Starter
Senior Member
 
YW84U's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Location: Victoria, BC
Posts: 348
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 14
Quote:
Originally Posted by kjlewie View Post

Tom,
Do you have any pictures of your riser and riser step build?
kjlewie

Hi kjlewie,

Construction around that time was pretty fast and furious, so I don't have a lot of pics of the riser build per se...

I dug around and managed to come up with these:









The riser itself was built on 2x12's atop 30lb tar paper on the concrete. 30lb paper went down next, followed by a layer of 3'4" plywood, more tar paper and finished off with another 1/2" of plywood. My guess would be i threw in nearly 2lbs of screws to hold it together . The step was pretty much the same structure, but I used a bunch of extra leftover sand from the stage to fill it in.

BTW, the very 'front' outlet is not AC but wiring for the bass shakers and prewire for coax and some cat5e if I needed it down the road.

Sorry I don't have more , but I hope that helps!

Cheers,
YW84U is offline  
post #270 of 361 Old 07-16-2008, 09:45 PM
AVS Special Member
 
kjlewie's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2008
Location: Marion, Iowa
Posts: 1,013
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 8 Post(s)
Liked: 26
Thanks Tom. Very helpful. I appreciate you digging back to the earlier stages of your build.

kjlewie

Clearly, I'm a man of action - just give me a few minutes to think about it.
Lewis Family Cinema 1.0

Lewis Family Cinema 2.0
kjlewie is offline  
Reply Dedicated Theater Design & Construction

User Tag List

Thread Tools
Show Printable Version Show Printable Version
Email this Page Email this Page


Forum Jump: 

Posting Rules  
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off