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HuskerOmaha's Basement Theater ++

post #1 of 625
Thread Starter 
Updated 4/15/11.

Will continue updating as room treatments (audio/visual) go up; among other future improvements.













Screen Wall Finished-5/17

post #2 of 625
You could bring your wife by my theater and I will change her mind about the AT screen. Most wives can not envision what it mite look like until they actually see it done so it really helps to see one finished With a AT screen you could hide your electrical panel behind the screen plus you really don't need a stage but they look cool so why not
post #3 of 625
After taking my wife to Scott's house, she started getting excited about the theater I was building. His is on one end of the extreme and it is VERY nice! I had no issues with doing an AT screen and a stage after the wife watched part of movie there. The stage just sets it off, but as Scott said, it's not a necessity.

Keep posting them pictures, I know you're further along than that!
post #4 of 625
Thread Starter 
I know I could take her by your screen and theater, but then she will just want to move into a house double our price, and we can't have that until our student loans are paid off.

Anyways, we will have to...mojave is in Elkhorn too....

More pictures.....

So, I'm about 1/2 to 2/3 done with my theater, but what a great time to start posting pics and getting help!

The prior owners had painted the insulation board white around the external sides of the room and the cement floor gray.

Start of framing:


**There will be a kitchenette or bar area on the left and a bathroom on the right; fridge near the stairs; AV rack in either the sump closet or....**



**Looking towards the stairs and HVAC closet area/potential AV rack area**



**Future screen location....electric panel in the way but will figure it out...thinking of AT and a stage but Wife nixed the idea...room isn't dedicated! She makes 1/2 the money so....**



**Another view**



The room isn't too large overall, not including HVAC closet....15 x 32 (wider on the bathroom side)...luckily have 9 ft ceilings....

More to come....
post #5 of 625
Thread Starter 
So after most of the framing is done....(notice the nice green summer grass outside)....decided the AV rack should go in the HVAC closet, so easy access (copying jamis theater and others ideas....)

*Rough outline of blue tape for projector hang ~16 ft, and screen layout*



*Rack frame-out and HVAC closet access*



*Rack frame with smurf and 2- 20A circuit runs*
(Should have done larger smurf.....)

post #6 of 625
You're welcome to stop by. The projector will be down for a week or so, so you may want to wait.
post #7 of 625
Thread Starter 
At this point, the following was my HT equipment....

158"? Da Lite Screen (pulldown)
Optoma HD72 projector
5.1 HTIB Panasonic


After deciding on getting rid of the HTIB and Da Lite Screen, I thought I could at least use the 720p Optoma since the picture quality was quite awesome to this point.....can always upgrade, right?
post #8 of 625
Thread Starter 
I bought the 1/2"? instead of 3/4" smurf tubing..and subsequently bought a fishtape to run almost all of my wire due to the small diameter. Lesson learned.

**Electrical ran. Can lights hung. Smurf tubing ran. Lots of work in...a few weekends to wire and run tubing**




**AV Rack, Closet, Surround, Stairway up (basement theater), plywood for AV closet (no conduit ran for electrical, for code reasons needed plywood if I remember)**



**The PITA electrical panel. My electrician buddy finally gave in to running the small panel instead of REPLACING my entire 125A panel with a 200A. In the long run he would be right, but we are talking getting inspected, extra $$, etc for a new panel. I wanted the small panel on the wall to the right for my screen's sake, he wouldnt budge because it would "look stupid". I call it a draw.**



**Rear of room. Will have a kitchenette, and bathroom. Bathroom electrical ran and rough-ins capped. Looking at cabinets, showers; didn't know how much a PITA the shower would end up being......(no walkout in basement)**

post #9 of 625
Man! Lot's of Nebraskans on here as of late which s great to see, but where the heck are all the Kansans??? C'mon Kansas...it's time to represent!

On another note, AT screens and not just esthetically pleasing, but also very beneficial for biological reasons as well.
post #10 of 625
Thread Starter 
I took these pictures and they are saved in pretty HQ. Do I need to make them smaller when posting? Seems like people like to see larger and more detail.

How do I get my "theater thread" in my sig? I'll have to figure that out soon too.

Does everyone set a deadline for their theater (mine was the Big XII Championship....) and not make it?

Now I'm looking at the superbowl. Hopefully my speakers will be shipped by then!

Edit: Will get the majority of the rest of the pictures up tonight...and then the selfish questions!
post #11 of 625
What I wouldn't give for 9 foot ceilings. I keep pushing my deadline back too, I'm shooting for the superbowl but the budget is running low this time of year so I'm thinking realistically I may make opening day of baseball season. I put my link in my sig but for the life of me can't remember how I did it. I think it was in your preferences section in the usercp.
post #12 of 625
Great to see your build.

Couple of things:
- big windows -- I actually boarded up one of my basement windows during the build (much to my wife's dismay, but it is my man cave)
- agree with larger smurf tubing. See JapanDave's thread with great runs
- for inspection ask about covering up the electrical box with screen -- see my contemplation of that in my HT build thread
- If I did it over again I would go with an AT screen

I look forward to more pics!

Mike
post #13 of 625
Thread Starter 
If possible, I'm going to try and move this thread to the proper place in the other sub-forum.


http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/forumdisplay.php?f=29

Down the road I might be able to do built-ins around the speakers and screen......with velvet and wood build...not sure if I have room now where the AV Rack hole is to come out from the wall for an AT screen...Think I'd want about 18 inches but only have 8" or so!

Thanks for the advice, Mike!


Edit: Sig link solved, thanks guys.
post #14 of 625
Type your own text here

Quote this post, copy the link code and change the part that says "Type your own text here".
post #15 of 625
Thread Starter 
Ok, back to more important stuff.... Man that sig took too long!
post #16 of 625
Thread Starter 
**Stage at where we had fun running more HVAC, stereo wire for the bar/bathroom ceiling speakers, and blockouts for all of the probable speaker locations**

**Split off some HVAC supplies to the main floor, good thing I'll be covering that up with drywall**



**Using the soffit to hide HVAC runs and bathroom exhaust fan, also ceiling speaker wire**





**Electrical run for projector, HDMI for projector ran through 2.5" gray conduit, blockouts for potential projector placement (should have put some behind the soffit on the ceiling....blockouts for heights/center in distance**




Some things I wish I had done differently: Maybe placed the screen on a different wall....maybe the interior wall opposite the egress window....negative was that the bar seating wouldn't happen/or you couldn't see the screen from anywhere in the room....but could have had 2 rows of seating and maybe a game table...

Wife wouldn't have had her storage area though, which is a must in our 1800 sq ft house with kids....
post #17 of 625
Thread Starter 
I was going to go the cheap route and get the large uncut batts of insulation, but instead opted for the "vapor barrier" rolls of JM. They cost more, but I have pretty weak skin that hates itchy things, so comfort overruled money here.

**Lowes had a special prior to Halloween that gave you a $150 gift card for how much I needed.**

Screen Wall with blockouts for mounts. At first it may look funny, but after hearing heights +5.1 vs without, I was sold. My center is above the screen due to the fact my screen will be low to the ground ~ right above the center outlet.

So, across the top you have the Heights and Center, the L/R, and Sub 1 (orange left box) and Sub 2 (blue right box). I only ran 12 ga speaker wire behind the studs, should have ran both RCA and 12ga. Planning on the CHT CS 18.T package most likely....

Additional panel is 60A, 40? of which is going to the AV Rack.



I tried to do the ceiling as tight as possible, but I'm not planning on this being anywhere close to soundproof. R-19 in ceiling, R-13 in walls.



Blockouts for surrounds and projector visible. Insulated the bathroom walls as well to try and help with sound control.





I had roughly 15 rolls of both left over, so I attempted/succeeded in putting them in the crawl space between the garage and kids bedrooms above it. To help with a) winter insulation issues and b) garage opener noise. After crawling all over, getting multiple bruises and cuts, it doesn't seem the insulation helped with either! Fail.
post #18 of 625
Thread Starter 
Doesn't he realize someone has to upload to the blog and post pictures?

post #19 of 625
Thread Starter 
Drywall went up right around Halloween as well. I found a guy that did the entire basement, ceiling, cleaned up the stairwell plaster, all materials-- for $1300. Ridiculous good job; especially on the windows that were looking pretty beat up. Highly recommend for any Omaha/Lincoln guys not wanting to do it yourself.

Looking back at future cabinet/bar/bathroom/fridge....



Larger view of room looking from screen side. I was going to put wall sconces on, but my electrical buddy convinced me we would have enough light with 15 6" recessed cans, so I listened. My wife also wasn't a big fan, since we couldn't put too much on the walls if we had sconces in the way.



I wish I would have known that the dust would get through ANYTHING. Our furnace quit lighting because a safety override switch noticed the filter was full of the junk (had changed it the DAY before they walled). I also covered everything in the storage room with 2 ply but it still got covered. I finally mopped everything up this week because the daily tracking of dust was affecting the home relations!

post #20 of 625
Thread Starter 
Looking into the bathroom and adjacent refrigerator. I wanted a full fridge in the basement with water hookup, and the only spot was next to the stairs...instead of opening to a wider look as you walk down the stairs, we had to throw the wall up, but ended up using the space well.

3/4 bathroom (32x46 shower).

I also liked Jamis HT a lot, I believe he had the can light above the fridge.



The only cheap alternative for recessed stair lights (other than low voltage stuff) around here seemed to be the Juno ones as you see here. I have three going up the stairs, and they were easy enough to install between studs. I also debated getting some kind of graphic eye or alternative, but will probably just go with regular dimmers.



I don't know why, but I put the outlet for the projector towards the ceiling, and the HDMI run ending on the soffit. I think the projector will end up being in between, but I should have done that better. I'm otherwise happy with all of the locations for outlets and speakers. I can still do a crown molding on each side of the large soffit down the road and have outlets for rope lights on each side.

post #21 of 625
Thread Starter 
But during this project (since August) that hasn't happened.

I think my 16 month old can lift more than me.....

post #22 of 625
Thread Starter 
It takes forever to try and tile/carpet/paint shop with a 16 month old and both parents working FT....

The rest of our house is painted very neutral, with browns/tans/reds/blues/yellows....We wanted something different....cool yet not too light.

I of course was dead set on painted the screen wall black and the ceiling black. Wife said no way Jose, this isn't JUST your theater....she wins this time, but I got her to compromise on paint a bit and promise in our next pad I get a dedicated theater. Thinking 2015-2020.

Anyways, the only thing here that may change is the tile for the floor. The shower is the darker with the decorative strip, the lighter will probably get replaced with a 3-tile design with 1 or 2 colors...

Bathroom: SW 6332 Coral Island
Stairwell: SW 6232 Misty
Main Room: SW 6221 Moody Blue LRV 27
Screen Wall/AV Rack/Front Ceiling: SW 6236 Grays Harbor LRV 11

I used all Sherwin Williams paints.....
Carpet is Shaw. (The green/blue one under the tile).
Tile from Lowes and Ceramic Tileworks in Omaha.



Thoughts? Haven't bought anything yet other than paint.
post #23 of 625
Thread Starter 
Since this is our "starter" home and for when that extra shower is needed, we decided to not just do the 1/2 bath, even though that would have saved space. Everything was already roughed in as well.

The basement is not a walkout, so going into this the shower was probably going to be a pain to figure out. I don't like the 3-piece or 2-piece ones with the potential leakage and harder to clean areas. I also didn't want to tile the entire shower including a floor pan so we came across this base....

Made by Kohler and bought from HD. They were terrible at customer service, shipped it 2 weeks late so I had to install after drywall. This resulted in tearing out some lower drywall and some ugly patchwork that was redone twice. Oh well!



Size: 32x46. Was going to go with the 5ft wide, but it just seemed too big. Liked the base with the seat for when my aging parents visit and stay in the basement....turned out to look pretty cool.

post #24 of 625
Thread Starter 
I always used to hate painting....I don't usually have the required patience.

This was different though.....seemed like the room had a purpose...other than all of those other rooms in a house!

This was the SW Grays Harbor for the screen wall.
Still wish it was black. Win some you lose some, and this isn't a dedicated theater room....



A better shot of the color. The light is washing it out pretty bad, as it seems to be a deeper gray...more like what you see in the AV Rack. The reverse side of the soffit behind is this color, and I'm debating whether to paint the ceiling between the screen wall and soffit this as well....before carpet.

Thoughts?

post #25 of 625
Thread Starter 
At this point I'm still waiting for my cabinets to be made. After comparing 2 custom guys and Lowes/HD, the custom guys cabinets were 10% cheaper and had better mechanisms, but were unfinished. They would be done 3 weeks earlier than Lowes and fit perfect. Custom it is.

While I was waiting...I painted the main room (SW Moody Blue) and started to build my bartop seating.



I shamelessly used another AVSforum build idea and think it should work perfectly. Now just playing with where to anchor it to the floor....with where I lazily put my surrounds (~13 ft from screen) I guess it will sit right behind those. Now just fighting with whether to center or put it against the wall.

I also started looking at the Berkline powerbuy and if I could practically fit 4 instead of 3 in front of the bartop and still have room for the aisle.

post #26 of 625
Thread Starter 
While STILL waiting for my cabinets...I measured and found out the AV Rack hole we had built would probably only fit a MA type rack or a DIY setup.

I was feeling lazy that week and had worked a little extra...so I splurged on a Middle Atlantic Slim 5-29.

I didn't really buy any accessories for it yet (fans, power strips, etc).
I'll figure that out later....welcome any advice on that. I don't know how I'm going to enclose the back of the rack yet either....MA panels or a DIY route...maybe DIY since CHT products are going to take my non-existent Christmas bonus.

Daddy's helper. Kept climbing in it as I tried not to drop the steel pieces on him.



CRAP. I thought I measured this right...It looks too big.

I also thought for some dumb reason the trays mounted behind the rack rails and needed to be secured with nuts. Trying to screw in trays behind the rack rails by yourself turned out to be a pain. My dad was over one day and showed me they probably went in front and needed no nuts.

I was fairly embarrassed. I think I even asked people on here how to do it...sorry for wasting your time!





It fits. Well that was close.
And how is there still drywall dust floating around?

post #27 of 625
Thread Starter 
Another thing while waiting on the cabinets was to install my bar and bathroom ceiling speakers. I like going to bars and being able to use the restroom and still catch on audio/tv what is going on in the big game.

Next year I will want to make sure I'm hearing Taylor Martinez run all over Wisconsin and Ohio State, so what better way than to get a couple of these in the ceiling.

http://www.monoprice.com/products/pr...seq=1&format=2

I didn't really research these at all....just needed something that sounded decent, and they had ok review from people and came recommended from a few on avsforum.

They seemed pretty beefy when I put them in the ceiling...hope they sound good!




It also explains the need for a 9 channel receiver....

post #28 of 625
Thread Starter 
Everyone says that. So I'm probably not going to hang my projector until the carpet is in. Even though I have no idea how to hang it or where yet.

I did however find a screen. I originally wanted to go all out and get a SMX AT screen or similar high quality products out there....but when I looked at value for my house and price range decided to follow some other recommendations from AVSforum members and go with Carada.

http://www.carada.com/ProductInfo.as...N-SCREEN-H118C

I went with the 16:9 format (118") since I watch more HD sports right now than movies...though I'm sure that may change soon since we don't make it out to many movies since having children.

Due to the wall size constraints, my soffit impairing my projector from being ceiling mounted, and the larger pro-audio speakers I plan on purchasing, I needed to downsize from my current Da-Lite 158" white matte pull-down screen and upgrade to an tensioned electric or fixed frame screen. Tensioned electric became a cost problem, so the fixed frame it is.

Now just to keep little hands from touching it. Maybe I should really think about a skinny low stage....still have time!



I had my brother drive down and we mounted the screen brackets and the frame to make sure we had it level and centered. We didn't put the screen up and returned the frame to the box to make sure we didn't decide to accidentally tear/dent/stain anything during the rest of the basement construction process.....

I also asked many forum members about how to slide the screen and almost bought sliding door mechanisms until kjsmitty let me in on how the screen slides by itself on the Carada mounts. I had to set them off the wall with 2x4s to miss my electric panel cover..but it works! Thanks to Mike_WI for his false wall ideas, I just couldn't make it work with the size of room and wife demands for a "play area" behind the bartop seating!

Edit: You may notice it is barely off the ground. Based on http://www.projectorcentral.com/proj...ulator-pro.cfm and my Optoma HD72 paired with the Carada, I need 21-24" of drop from lens to top of the viewable screen.

I still don't know if this is an absolute. If it is, well I'm screwed. If there is a few inches of give and the edges of your picture may suffer, I guess that is what I'll have to deal with. The soffit is in the way...and so instead of being 4 inches off the ceiling my projector will be more like 14.....more to come on this....
post #29 of 625
Thread Starter 
After reading up on power conditioning/surge protection/power supplies I decided I wanted to go the used route since I wasn't sold on it but wanted to include it in the rack.

Mike C, AVS Mod, had some listed here in the classifieds and we made a deal. Step up for me, Christmas Cash for him.


Mike sold me the Monster HTS5100 and AVS2000. I haven't hooked anything up yet...but my son, Landon enjoyed unpacking them for me, and repacking, and unpacking.....

Nice work on the packaging Mike!

post #30 of 625
Thread Starter 
After 3 weeks, my cabinets are finally here and ready to be hung. They are unfinished of course, so that should be fun.

Electric Panel Cover.
In hindsight I probably should have gotten a flat non-descript metal panel to go over this..but we were thinking of future selling as well as current use. I will most likely paint this to match the screen wall so it can "disappear" during films....part of it will unfortunately stick past the edge of the screen. Minor fail in planning.



A look toward the action in the rear of the room. Drawers, cabinets, shelves...



I was also working on my bartop at this time. Found a spot to anchor it and used some meaty cement screws and a hammerdrill. Mmmm the smell of concrete burning.





Had to get a shot of the wine rack. I'm pretty excited about this. Because I really like wine...and beer....any guess to where the wine rack may go?




I was kind of shocked at cabinets and the price tag. I guess there is quite some labor involved if it took someone 3 weeks working almost nightly to build, but man. It was 1/3 of my total cost to this point.....

I'm not sure what stain to go with...could use some advice here...

Going with white trim and doors......what color would you recommend? Was thinking something along the lines of Sherwin Williams Warm Chestnut 3114, Burnished Walnut 3119, Pecan 3124, or Armoire Hickory 3129. We want them to be dark enough to not look weird with white trim, but not too dark to really make the room like a black hole.

http://www.sherwin-williams.com/do_i...ains/interior/


If you have a minute, throw me a suggestion! Want to do this in the next few days!
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