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Small DIY dedicated Theatre - Post Build and retrospective

post #1 of 73
Thread Starter 

Good day, (updated February 25th 2013.. New equipment/changes in BOLD)

I'm pretty much done! Check out my build thread to see how I got here ( http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showthread.php?t=1387961 ) I am very pleased and satisfied with how my little theater turned out. I started with a specific vision of what I wanted and how much I was willing to spend. I must say I've attained my initial goals!

Before I get to the pics, I'll give you a run down of my modest equipment list (but getting better!):

Projector: BenQ W6000
A/V Receiver: Pionneer VSX 1025   Pioneer VSX-1326 (Elite VSX-53)
Bluray: Samsung BD-E5700   OPPO BDP-103
Sub: Klipsch 12" SW112  X2
Center: HTD Level 3   Klipsch Reference Tower RF800B 
Front mains: HTD Level 2    Klipsch Reference Tower RF800B
Suround side/back: HTD HD-65
Height: HTIB Harmon Kardon
Screen: Accuscreen 106" AT
Front row: Dolphin Star (Midwest Theater seating)
Back row: Palliser Pacifico

Now for some pics: (Obviously I've updated my front sound stage... I've left the pics of my old configuration, but the front of the theater is now clean with zero visible speakers...everything is behind the screen)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 
















































Edited by Mat1220 - 2/25/13 at 6:13am
post #2 of 73
Very nice looking theater. Simple yet elegant design. This is very close to the direction I am planning to go with mine.

Great job!

Shan
post #3 of 73
I like the colours etc, very tidy job.

Is there any way you can get that center off the floor? I know it looks cool, but it'd be so much better above the screen
post #4 of 73
Beautiful black theater! Helps me to envision what the lighting will look like in mine (even blacker than this one).

What fabric did you use on the walls?
post #5 of 73
Thread Starter 
Well, my original plan was to have all three front channels behind my AT screen with the center on a pedestal right in the middle, but i found that my sound stage was way to narrow... I needed more seperation on my fronts. So when I pulled everything to the front I wanted them all at the same distance. Could I still have my center behind the screen and my front mains in front?
post #6 of 73
I don't see why there would be an issue with that. First off, you really need everything the same distance from the listener, which can put your fronts a little further forward than the center anyhow and your AVR can adjust for any additional distance. I think pulling the dialog to the screen would be well worth any other sacrifices. As it stands now, I would assume dialog must be a bit muffled in the back seats with 3 people in the seats in the front.

Perhaps one of the more knowledgeable folks will reply and confirm or tell me I am nuts (I probably am )

Shan
post #7 of 73
nice theater room. great job
post #8 of 73
Are those framed prints of manufacturer logos on your walls?
post #9 of 73
Could you share a little more info on your "columns". Are they just single sheets of plywood? Method of attachment?
post #10 of 73
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by jdanforth View Post

Are those framed prints of manufacturer logos on your walls?

Yes they are. They are from an AVS member. I'm not on my computer and I can't find the link to his site. He has tons of high res images in different styles. All for free. I will give him credit tomorrow!
post #11 of 73
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Unacceptable View Post

Beautiful black theater! Helps me to envision what the lighting will look like in mine (even blacker than this one).

What fabric did you use on the walls?

The wall fabric is a type of speaker cover fabric. It's acoustically transparent. The walls are actually acoustic panels.
post #12 of 73
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Spaceman View Post

Could you share a little more info on your "columns". Are they just single sheets of plywood? Method of attachment?

Easy and super cheap!! They are the highest grade sanded 5/8 plywood sold at Home Depot. I used plain ole construction adhesive to glue them right onto the drywall. I pre-cut the holes for the speakers before attaching them. I had very limited space so I could not have large columns but I still wanted to have something interesting for my speakers and to break up the black of the walls. I really like how they turned out.
post #13 of 73
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mat1220 View Post

Easy and super cheap!! They are the highest grade sanded 5/8 plywood sold at Home Depot. I used plain ole construction adhesive to glue them right onto the drywall. I pre-cut the holes for the speakers before attaching them. I had very limited space so I could not have large columns but I still wanted to have something interesting for my speakers and to break up the black of the walls. I really like how they turned out.

They look great and it looks like you were able to keep all the edges hidden. I saw that you used a cherry stain. Can you walk us through your staining process?
post #14 of 73
Sweeeet!!!!
post #15 of 73
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mat1220 View Post

The wall fabric is a type of speaker cover fabric. It's acoustically transparent. The walls are actually acoustic panels.

Don't leave me hanging... details please!
post #16 of 73
One of my favourites so far! Beautiful room in such a short amount of time!
post #17 of 73
Absolutely stunning. Great work!
post #18 of 73
I think I may steal your column idea! I love how that looks and it doesn't take up any space!
post #19 of 73
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Spaceman View Post

They look great and it looks like you were able to keep all the edges hidden. I saw that you used a cherry stain. Can you walk us through your staining process?

Pretty simple really. I bought a Stain and Polyurethane in one, Satin. Sanded my columns, stained, steal wool, stain, steal wool, stain.... probably about 4 or 5 coats until I got the color I wanted.



This was after only one coat... quite a few to go!



Then I simply pre cut the holes for my in wall speakers and attached the columns directly to the drywall using construction adhesive.









It's pretty amazing how just adding the columns really helped light up the room. The "all black everything" was just too much... My big 1000W industrial light had a hard time lighting it up!

I then cut the rest of the holes right through the drywall and installed the speakers.
post #20 of 73
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Unacceptable View Post

Don't leave me hanging... details please!

Well the ceiling are DIY acoustic panels using 5/8, 48" by 24" hard fiber boards used for ceiling applications. I wrapped them with black speaker cloth and again used the ole' construction adhesive. I used 3M spray on adhesive to hold the cloth on the panels. Worked out great! and cuts down a bit on the reflections.

The walls are basically the same thing except the cloth is actually a speaker box fabric. It's almost like a really thin automotive style carpet. It's very thin and easy to work with. I custom cut the fiber boards and wrapped them in the same way as the ceiling panels. They are acoustically transparent to a certain degree. But most likely deflect a bit more then the ceiling. But It was very inexpensive and it looks great! It looks really professional and expensive... which is what I was going for! ha!

I didn't take any pictures of the panels themselves. Here is one of the boxes of panels I got from HD. I ended up buying a lot more!!



And here is a picture of my better half cutting some speaker cloth.

post #21 of 73
Great job! Thanks for sharing.
post #22 of 73
I love the look and feel of the room. The minimalist columns really help to make the room! My dimensions are very similar, 13'-10" x 16'-4". Your theater has given me ideas and inspiration aplenty.

Did I read that you were originally going to buy more of the midwest theater chairs? If so, what made you decide to stick with 2 styles of seats?
post #23 of 73
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Todd Lee View Post

I love the look and feel of the room. The minimalist columns really help to make the room! My dimensions are very similar, 13'-10" x 16'-4". Your theater has given me ideas and inspiration aplenty.

Did I read that you were originally going to buy more of the midwest theater chairs? If so, what made you decide to stick with 2 styles of seats?

Thanks for the comments Todd! This is exactly why this forum is so great. I got all my inspiration from theaters built by members too!

And yes, I had originally planned to have 6 theater seats (It would have been much cheaper then the Palisers I ended up getting for my back row. But I have 2 young children and probably more on the way eventually and the big comfy Palisers are just better for those family movie nights. My boys can both fit easily in one of those chairs and can snuggle with us if they want!

I like having the choice!
post #24 of 73
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by DavidK442 View Post

Fantastic job without a crazy amount of time or money invested. Love the contrast of the stained fir plywood against the black panels. I'll be adding your pictures to my "hometheater2" scrapbook to maybe steal ideas for next time.

You ended up going with the grey Accuscreen AT correct? What are your impressions of the image? BenQ plenty bright? Due whites and yellows take on a dingy look or still plenty of saturation and pop?

Ah thanks David! I have to say that your build was very inspirational for me too! I love the look and feel of yours and it helped keep me motivated to get mine just right!

Yes I did go with the dark grey Accuscreen AT. I couldn't be happier! The W6000 is so bright I think it's a perfect match for this screen. Colors pop and blacks are beautiful! Whites are white! I had a professional calibrater come in to calibrate the PJ and audio and he couldn't get over the quality of the screen for the price I paid. He had recently calibrated a multi thousand dollar theater with a 12k dollar projector and said my room stands up very well against it. It was awesome to have that sort of validation.
post #25 of 73
Thread Starter 
Ok, went out and bought a couple of speaker stands to act as a pedestal for my center speaker. Also, I'm thinking of picking up a second Klipsch sw-112 sub. I'm limited on placement. If I pull the trigger and get a second one, it's going to the left of the center channel behind my screen. Anyone have an opinion on putting both subs behind the screen wall? Experience?
LL
post #26 of 73
That looks great. I noticed the rear seats are basically right up against the rear speakers. How does this work out? It doesn't blow out people's ears does it? My theater is probably going to have the back row right against the wall too, so I'm thinking about the best way to handle that situation.
post #27 of 73
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by ozziegt View Post

That looks great. I noticed the rear seats are basically right up against the rear speakers. How does this work out? It doesn't blow out people's ears does it? My theater is probably going to have the back row right against the wall too, so I'm thinking about the best way to handle that situation.

Thanks for the compliment! To answer your question, the rears are calibrated for that distance so the effect is more subtle then overwhelming. It's far from a perfect situation but I have to say I'm quite happy with how spacialy aware I am of the rear channel. In some of the better movies, I lose the back wall and get great rear depth.
post #28 of 73
Thread Starter 
Well I pulled the trigger on that second sub. I found an incredible deal on Ebay for an identical 12 inch Kliptsch! It retails localy for 750 and I got it for 227 plus 50 bucks shipping. It was an open box but essentially brand new!

Anyway, I set it up as best I could with my configuration. I read up on a whole bunch of papers and articles on the best way to calibrate and position multiple subs (thanks for the link David!), but my only real option was placing them both behind my screen.

The issue I was having with only the one sub, I can only describe as a "punchy" bass? Does that make sense? The bass did not seem to be blending in right and was too apparent, as if my sub was trying to hard. Most of my friends and family thought I was just being too picky but it was not sitting well with me.

Anyway, I bought an SPL meter and attempted my first calibration. I set all the distances and calibrated all the speakers to 75db. I set everything to "small" and the crossover to 80hz. I then dialed the Gain nob to zero on each sub and set the receiver DB to 0. I slowly dialed up the Gain until I reached close to 75db on the SPL and and then fine tuned it via the receiver.

At first I had both subs firing directly forward but I experimented using movie clips with lots of LFE content and found that I was getting the best result with the subs slightly angled as you see in the photo.

I am very happy right now!! The bass is not louder but MUCH more present!! and very well blended! What a difference... It's as if ALL my speakers sound better and I can go louder then before without it feeling "too loud" if you know what I mean. It's a "better" loud.

You can see I set the subs on concrete blocks covered with carpet. I wanted to raise them because they would have been sitting lower then the screen and below the 2x4 construction of the screen wall.

post #29 of 73
Mat1220,

My wife and I love your setup. We are buying a new house shortly and we are going to have the builder finish most of the basement and we are going to have him frame out the media room. We will "finish" it. We will most likely base our theater on yours. Yours is perfect. If it isn't too much trouble can you reply to me with your favorite, most useful links? Thank you in advance!

Chip
post #30 of 73
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by chiptouz View Post

Mat1220,

My wife and I love your setup. We are buying a new house shortly and we are going to have the builder finish most of the basement and we are going to have him frame out the media room. We will "finish" it. We will most likely base our theater on yours. Yours is perfect. If it isn't too much trouble can you reply to me with your favorite, most useful links? Thank you in advance!

Chip

PM sent!
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