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HT Cabinet Setup. Wire routeing, Power and Cooling.

post #1 of 4
Thread Starter 
Hi All,

I have a cabinet in my family room that I would like to store my A/V components in. As of right now there is no cooling, no wiring, and no power. I am looking for some recommendations on how I should cool the cabinet and run the wiring. My basement is unfinished so I plan to run the wires as needed through the basement. Beneath the bottom shelf is the sub floor so I will have to drill through that for any air flow, I assume. I can't vent out the back of the cabinet because the back faces the kitchen area.I have attached pictures of the cabinet and the mock up of A/V components I'll store there as best I could. If you need any more details please feel free to ask.






Edited by dabusabus1 - 8/4/12 at 11:30am
post #2 of 4
As you're suspecting, the components will actually create quite a bit of heat - my PS3 is like a furnace!

I think that you have the equipment on the right shelves - amps on top, then sources, then the surge protector on the bottom.

One of the challenges you have with the solid shelves is getting airflow/circulation - you have to be able to get air in, over each piece of equipment, and then out. One solution would be to drill a series of decent-sized holes in each shelf to allow bottom-to-top flow of air or you could keep the shelves intact and do a left-to-right flow.

You'll have to use a fan (or fans) to move the air - passive convection won't be sufficient (especially when you shut the doors!). You said there is a sub-floor under the unit - and under this is the basement? If so, that's great - you'll have an almost unlimited source of cool air; it also gives you you opportunity to mount the fans outside of the cabinet, making them inaudible.

I can't see exactly from the photographs, but it looks like you may have space in the very top of the enclosure to build a "false ceiling" - kind of a plenum chamber - that you could then vent back down to the basement if you went the "bottom-to-top" venting route.

I don't know how much detail you want to get into, but here's a great document from Middle Atlantic (the "rack people") that does a really good job of discussing some of the fundamentals of what you're trying to do:


Not sure if any of these ramblings help, but at least it's a start!

post #3 of 4
I like rack mounting equipment. Can all of those devices, or most, fit into a cabinet rack frame?

Slide out is nice, but pretty pricey. Middle Atlantic CRF or other brand might be a consideration.

From your pic, the air return to the basement could travel down through that empty space to the right of the cabinet, from the top of the cabinet (probably hollow).
post #4 of 4
That pull-out rack is pretty sweet.

Here my "poor-man" slide out. Some carpentry and 2 bottom-mount steel-balls sliders.

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AVS › AVS Forum › A/V Control & Automation › Tweaks and Do-It-Yourself › HT Cabinet Setup. Wire routeing, Power and Cooling.