Apartment Theatre Room (Ideas Needed!) - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 26 Old 07-05-2014, 12:23 PM - Thread Starter
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Apartment Theatre Room (Ideas Needed!)

Hey everyone!

I'm going to be needing a lot of help from this forum over the next few months. I've been reading about and seeing all the awesome theaters on this thread lately and was inspired to give a theater room a go myself.

I have permission from the misses to make a theater room in our spare bedroom that will give me an escape when she's sleeping all day (she's a night-shift nurse). Here's the floorplan of the bedroom area, it's small but I think I can make it work, looking for advice on here for the best layouts to maximize use of this space.


I'm thinking that little nook could be a good spot for all of the equipment; I just don't know what wall I'm going to project onto yet. Any ideas?

I have a couch that's 7' 6" x 3' 6" and a love seat that is 5' 6" x 3' 6" that are very nice. I want to have at least one in this room, possibly both if they fit. I'f not I'd get a separate 1 seater chair.

I'm thinking of using the Epson 2030 projector since it's such a small room, not sure if I'll mount it on the back wall, ceiling about midway or on a coffee table in the room. (ideas?)

I still haven't found any speakers, I currently have a 5.1 Sony receiver and am going to try to find a 5.1 speaker system under $300-400, any ideas?

The room will be starting from scratch and absolutely bear. I'd like to paint it darker (it's white now) and add some acoustic paneling in the room. Maybe throw up a few accent lights for some art I've done which will be on display there and red curtains.

Off the bat I'm trying to see, do you think it's possible in this small of a space and do you think the epson 2030 is the best for this size room 1080p, 3D for under $900?

Would love any and all feedback, I'm a 100% noob.
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post #2 of 26 Old 07-05-2014, 01:33 PM
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For some reason your picture isn't showing up for me.
-What are your room's dimensions and ceiling height?
-How far back will seating probably be?
-About how large would you like your screen?

Leave the screen-wall white for now. Once you've gotten a projector, you can use the wall to find exactly what size screen will suite you..and a white wall makes a surprisingly good screen if it is fairly smooth, which might be something to consider if you are saving money and treating the rest of the room in darks (which makes a simple white screen the best choice by far).

The Benq w1070 will have much better contrast and give a better picture than the 2030 for an even lower price. It is the first projector most should be considering unless they plan to spend around $2000+ on a projector, or need a small screen from far away.

Will you have soundsystem troubles with your wife sleeping in the next room? Sounds like a unique situation.

Last edited by Ftoast; 07-05-2014 at 01:38 PM.
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post #3 of 26 Old 07-05-2014, 04:49 PM - Thread Starter
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For some reason your picture isn't showing up for me.
-What are your room's dimensions and ceiling height?
-How far back will seating probably be?
-About how large would you like your screen?

Leave the screen-wall white for now. Once you've gotten a projector, you can use the wall to find exactly what size screen will suite you..and a white wall makes a surprisingly good screen if it is fairly smooth, which might be something to consider if you are saving money and treating the rest of the room in darks (which makes a simple white screen the best choice by far).

The Benq w1070 will have much better contrast and give a better picture than the 2030 for an even lower price. It is the first projector most should be considering unless they plan to spend around $2000+ on a projector, or need a small screen from far away.

Will you have soundsystem troubles with your wife sleeping in the next room? Sounds like a unique situation.
Here is the bedroom link:

This link is a version of the room I measured out filled with everything we'd need.


That image should answer the majority of the questions you asked. What benefits does the Benq have compared to the Epson? The Epson site shows the contrast ratio on the 2030 being 15,000:1 and the Benq being 10,000:1.

Also, I forgot to mention; I'm just going to turn the volume down on the surround sound when the misses is sleeping but still want something nice for when we both watch movies together.

Last edited by aceer15; 07-05-2014 at 06:44 PM.
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post #4 of 26 Old 07-05-2014, 06:45 PM - Thread Starter
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Between the Epson 2030, Benq W1070 and Optima HD25 any suggestions about what works best for my room?
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post #5 of 26 Old 07-05-2014, 09:31 PM
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What benefits does the Benq have compared to the Epson? The Epson site shows the contrast ratio on the 2030 being 15,000:1 and the Benq being 10,000:1.
Never, ever, ever trust these numbers. Manufacturers arrive at their contrast ratings via techniques only slightly less arbitrary than reading sheep entrails, and they generally only apply under situations you'd never actually encounter when watching movies, like projecting an all-white image at full brightness followed by an all-black image in eco mode (and then they get rounded up anyway). In real-world usage with decent calibration, the w1070 actually has much better contrast than the 2030.
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post #6 of 26 Old 07-05-2014, 10:21 PM - Thread Starter
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So between the 3 I mentioned it's pretty much a unanimous decision for the Benq w1070?

Just want to make sure since this will be a entertainment room as well as a movie room (might not be pitch black all the time), still the Benq?
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post #7 of 26 Old 07-05-2014, 10:37 PM
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Originally Posted by aceer15 View Post
So between the 3 I mentioned it's pretty much a unanimous decision for the Benq w1070?

Just want to make sure since this will be a entertainment room as well as a movie room (might not be pitch black all the time), still the Benq?
Just to clarify, are you sure you're talking about the Optoma HD25, or are you talking about the HD25-LV or HD25e? The last two models are actually quite different from the first one, and not as good.
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post #8 of 26 Old 07-05-2014, 10:56 PM - Thread Starter
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Just to clarify, are you sure you're talking about the Optoma HD25, or are you talking about the HD25-LV or HD25e? The last two models are actually quite different from the first one, and not as good.
I'm referring to the HD25-lv. I've been reading about the Benq and am really impressed with all of the reviews!
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post #9 of 26 Old 07-05-2014, 11:08 PM
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I'm referring to the HD25-lv. I've been reading about the Benq and am really impressed with all of the reviews!
Yeah, the Benq is pretty much the default recommendation for anyone in this price range unless they have a unique situation, and at its current $700 price on Amazon it's difficult to recommend anything else. It won't disappoint you.
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post #10 of 26 Old 07-05-2014, 11:15 PM - Thread Starter
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Yeah, the Benq is pretty much the default recommendation for anyone in this price range unless they have a unique situation, and at its current $700 price on Amazon it's difficult to recommend anything else. It won't disappoint you.
Awesome, thanks for the recommendation.

Now onto speakers. Any recommendations for a 5.1 surround system for this room? I already have a brand new Sony receiver so I would just need the 5.1 system.
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post #11 of 26 Old 07-06-2014, 07:47 AM
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I <3 the KEF e305's. They will work really nicely in a smaller room. You could add a second sub in time if that is not big enough for ya but for day one I think you would be happy with these.

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post #12 of 26 Old 07-06-2014, 09:53 AM - Thread Starter
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I <3 the KEF e305's. They will work really nicely in a smaller room. You could add a second sub in time if that is not big enough for ya but for day one I think you would be happy with these.

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I need to stay around the $400 range, I can't spend $1,000 on speakers right now.
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post #13 of 26 Old 07-06-2014, 04:50 PM
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That's $50 a speaker and $150 for the sub?

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post #14 of 26 Old 07-06-2014, 08:28 PM - Thread Starter
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If I can find a set for that, I'd love it. I have seen many in my price range, I just don't know which of them would be the best. Was hoping people the people of this site could help me with some insight.


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post #15 of 26 Old 07-06-2014, 10:10 PM
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If you've got the space for it, the Pioneer SP-PK52FS is simply the best-sounding, budget-price home theater speaker package you can buy.

http://www.pioneerelectronics.com/PU...ages/SP-PK52FS

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post #16 of 26 Old 07-06-2014, 11:59 PM
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If you've got the space for it, the Pioneer SP-PK52FS is simply the best-sounding, budget-price home theater speaker package you can buy.

http://www.pioneerelectronics.com/PU...ages/SP-PK52FS
Agreed about the Pioneers. If you want to go cheaper, aceer15, my sister-in-law bought a 5.1 speaker system from Monoprice.com for a room about the size of your room. The sound from that cheap system was shockingly good. For less than 300 bucks.
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post #17 of 26 Old 07-07-2014, 12:15 PM - Thread Starter
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What do y'all think about this set?
http://m.bestbuy.com/m/e/product/det...d=abcat0203000


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post #18 of 26 Old 07-07-2014, 06:58 PM - Thread Starter
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Any thoughts?


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post #19 of 26 Old 07-07-2014, 07:52 PM
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Any thoughts?


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I wouldn't recommend the Onkyo set. I'd recommend the Pioneer PK21BS or Energy Take 5.1. The Pioneer PK21BS is essentially the PK52FS I recommended above with the two tower speakers replaced with smaller bookshelf speakers. Both the Pioneer PK21BS and Energy Take 5.1 can be had for around $400. If you want to stay below that price, I'd go for the Monoprice 10565 (or 9774 if you can get your hands on one) for $200. It may sound too good to be true but the Monoprice system is truly the best bang for your buck and given your small room, you may be satisfied with it.

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Last edited by USSValor; 07-07-2014 at 08:02 PM.
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post #20 of 26 Old 07-07-2014, 08:35 PM - Thread Starter
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Awesome I'm be looking for it, thanks for the advice!


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post #21 of 26 Old 07-08-2014, 11:16 AM
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Onkyo traditionally makes very well valued systems, but their speakers are very low grade stuff. Fine for an extreme budget starter system, and great upgrade potential from systems which cost next to nothing, but if you have a more realistic speaker budget, then use it. Speakers typically give you what you pay for, and spending thousands of dollars more on speakers actually gives you far more quality, and headroom for volume. Unlike other things which quickly have diminishing returns, you can get a lot more out of speakers when you spend a lot more.

Especially in subwoofers, which easily can cost over $1,000 and be worth every penny.

No, I know in an apartment that doesn't make sense for you, but the first mentioned Pioneer set really would give you a system you could take with you and use wherever you end up.

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post #22 of 26 Old 07-08-2014, 12:01 PM - Thread Starter
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The Pioneer might be doable, but it would depend what I can find a receiver for. Any ideas on a budget receiver that performs decently?
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post #23 of 26 Old 07-08-2014, 12:10 PM
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Didn't you just say you had a Sony receiver?

Do you need the receiver now as well?

There's a number of refurbished units with a factory warranty, on Accessories4Less which are well under $200.

ie: http://www.accessories4less.com/make...eceiver/1.html

These are traditional A/V receivers which will do a decent job. They need good ventilation and they are very much entry level at lower price range, so don't expect a ton of 'boom' from them.

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post #24 of 26 Old 07-08-2014, 05:14 PM - Thread Starter
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I have this older sony receiver sony str-dh500 brand new. I noticed the hdmi is pass through, is this going to effect my sound quality on the monoprice 10565's?


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post #25 of 26 Old 07-08-2014, 07:14 PM
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You have to make a digital audio connection to that receiver along with the HDMI connection to get audio. Realistically, you could use an external HDMI switcher and bypass the Sony, and just use digital audio to the Sony as to how much the Sony is involved with HDMI.

I just answered a question about that same receiver in the HDMI section of the forums and was looking at the specifications, and that HDMI is just a waste (IMO) to include on that receiver since it completely ignores what an A/V receiver is supposed to do with HDMI.

Still, the receivers that are refurb units from Accessories4Less.com are really worth taking a look at. Lots of options there, so you may want to spend some time doing your homework and asking in the more audio specific sections of the forums.

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post #26 of 26 Old 07-08-2014, 08:34 PM - Thread Starter
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I'm going to test the speakers with that receiver since it's brand new and free right now. If it doesn't work well I'll start looking at the audio form a little more

Thank you very much for the help! Looking forward to the projector and speakers getting here!


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