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What I'd do differently next time. - Page 6

post #151 of 814
Yeah, 14 feet is OK for 3 large chairs across, or 4 smaller w/shared armrests. However, I get the feeling that if I had 16 feet, I would put 4 large chairs across, then it would be, hey 2 more feet would be nice so I could have 5 across and the captains chair exactly in the middle of the room, Never ends... I learned a lot on HT build 1.0, and the major lesson for me was - more space is better, and I will fight for every extra foot in every dimension that I can get on HT 2.0.
post #152 of 814
Moving in 2 weeks to a new house with drop ceiling in the basement. I have a Panny PT AE900 projector that I need to mount from the ceiling - where do I find a mount that will be easy for me to install with this type of ceiling?

Also I want to ventilate around the projector more this time as my current room gets HOT after more than 90 minutes or so of viewing - how do I accomplish this with this type of ceiling?

Thanks!
post #153 of 814
Quote:
Originally Posted by usualsuspects View Post

Yeah, 14 feet is OK for 3 large chairs across, or 4 smaller w/shared armrests. However, I get the feeling that if I had 16 feet, I would put 4 large chairs across, then it would be, hey 2 more feet would be nice so I could have 5 across and the captains chair exactly in the middle of the room, Never ends... I learned a lot on HT build 1.0, and the major lesson for me was - more space is better, and I will fight for every extra foot in every dimension that I can get on HT 2.0.

I agree with you that bigger is better. However, my theater is only 12 ft wide. It's 30 feet deep. I have three rows of seating. One in front at 16 ft and one on the riser at 23 ft. The third row is on the riser behind the chairs and it's a little bar. 12 ft is adequate for my theater. I can get 3 seats in each row and I can throw bean bag chairs on the floor in front of the first row of chairs. The kids seem to like the front row. My wife and myself prefer the back row.

My theater is in my newly finished basement. There's a little mini-kitchen/wet-bar, a lounge area and a largish space for a ping pong table.

The thing I'd do different next time is the cabling for the secondary TVs. I only ran cable to those locations. Since you need a cable box for HD digital channels, I'd make arrangements to use the secondary TVs as monitors to the main cable box. At $12 ea, it's too expensive to get a box for each TV.

I'm wondering if I can use the coax output of the theater cable box to feed the secondary TVs. I have the box connected to my HT receiver by HDMI. I wonder if the coax ouput is also hot. Anyway, next time, I'd give more thought to that.
post #154 of 814
I wouldn't put any can lights in the ceiling. The sound seems to escape to the first floor from those holes. And yes I did double MDF boxes with grren glue to isolate those, but still those holes remain the weakest point in my ceiling. Should have used tray lights or soffits to put the lights in...
post #155 of 814
Stef2- Did you put insulation above the pots?
post #156 of 814
Quote:
Originally Posted by aquafire View Post

Stef2- Did you put insulation above the pots?

Well the pots are inside a metallic box (the box you have to use when installing those lights in an isolated attic), then the metallic box is surrounded by two similar MDF made boxes with green glue inbetween and ROXUL insulation around and above those MDF boxes (filling the 3 inches gap between the box and the floor above).

I did a test and covered the lights with 1 inch MDF squares quickly fastened to the unfinished ceiling and the difference in sound transmission to the room above seemed evident. Maybe I could have done it better, using one more layer of MDF and a more perfect fit? But to me using those kind of lights will always create a weakness...
post #157 of 814
Wow..that is really troubling me!

I didn't put any boxes around the pots....I could still get in there I have not started plastering yet....

DAMN!!!
post #158 of 814
While I haven't even gotten close to being finished, I'd like to add a few right away:

* When cutting with a mitre saw (laser or otherwise) only the left side will give you the exact dimenson cut. If you have the piece you wanted to use on the right, it will be about 3/16 too short.

* NEVER assume your ceiling and walls are square.
post #159 of 814
Quote:
Originally Posted by hdtheater View Post

I would have stuck my center channel below the screen and fire it through the GOM instead of pay for a perforated screen that gives off a MOIRE pattern. Not much you can do to fix that.

I know this is old... you still around? I installed an SMX AT screen. You have to tip the weave by at least 15 degrees. You have to buy a little more material to do this, but... no Moire!
post #160 of 814
I'm not done yet either. But I've learned that using Elmer's wood glue to attach molding to stainable mahogany is very dumb. I didn't even read the bottle, just figured it would be fine. Well it doesn't take stain where it seeped onto the wood and where I made a bit of a mess on the molding. AAAHHHHH! It took me hours of sanding, touching up with stain, etc.... to make it look decent. I even had to come back with an artist's brush with thick semi-dried stain on to parts that just wouldn't stain. Now it looks fine but boy oh boy don't do that! I doubt any of you would do something that dumb though.
post #161 of 814
LOL! No worries, we just do other dumb things
post #162 of 814
I have a few things that I wish I had done differently:

1. While building the house, upgrade the main support beam to steel beam so that there there's no lolly columns in the basement, that will allow me to build larger room

2. 9' ceiling in the basement

3. Build an in-wall equipment cabinet in the back of the room(I'm retrofitting now)

4. Better lighting, 6 sconces just don't produce enough light.
post #163 of 814
my lessons learned list starts off with "hire Dennis" but the main things I kicked myself about where:

1. Cutting 9 holes in my double dryway with greenglue for lights - idiot!! The thing is like swiss cheese in the ceiling.

2. Not running HDMI to my 2nd and 3rd screens because at the time I couldn't see a matrix switch on the market.

3. Not spending enough time getting the screen in exactly the right place. In the back row it seems a bit too low and the front seats are a fraction too close to the back ones.

4. Not thinking about how the lighting affects the screen. I have one circuit that controls all the cans but when I want some light I wish I could turn off the 3 nearest the screen and leave the others on low. Same deal with the sconces.

5. Not using RSIC (?) clips for the ceiling. If someone walks over the PJ in the kitchen upstairs the image shakes slightly and you can hear it!

6. Not getting a dedicated AC in there. It gets really hot with 7 people and an Optoma PJ...

I love the room but there are always little things to fix or do better next time!
post #164 of 814
Heres a real dumb one i found out about today. Put the soffit up AFTER the conduit to the projector. Its impossible to slide 10' of pipe in between a 16" stud spacing. I had to cut it in half and use a coupler to combine two 5' pieces.
post #165 of 814
Another dumb one that I ran into with my framers:

during framing of a wall, start with framing around the center channel and work outward from there. Otherwise your left and right speakers setup might require adjustment of a stud to equalize their distance from the center speaker.
post #166 of 814
I put some plywood between the studs to give some leeway as to the fiinal location of the speaker mounts.
post #167 of 814
Next time I will have more bass traps. I'll make the columns where possible into broad band absorbers. My 6' x 12' riser did not turn out to be enough in my room.
post #168 of 814
90% done here... Nothing yet... I hired out the drywall finishing thanks to this thread.
post #169 of 814
Thread Starter 
Well, the riser was enough ... it was just placed in the wrong place to be effective and tuned incorrectly. Oh, well. Kraz will have you on the right track any second now.
post #170 of 814
Yeah he has me on the right track
post #171 of 814
I did spend a lot of time here while I was working on it and did sacrifice a lot of things in the name of "cost" and I knew I would have those issues so they don’t bother me. But there are a few things I didn’t know about now that I wish I had done:

1) Projector ceiling mount work. Kids jumping upstairs still rattle it a bit even though I friggen insulated the hell out of the ceiling. Need some kind of hardware based shock absorber.
2) Window: I should have framed over the window on the theater side of my basement. ITs rattling like a SOB with heavy Bass (can only hear it rattling from the outside, not the inside). It would have been a fight with the wife though.
3) Flat black paint on ceiling. I knew I needed it, pushed my wife for it and conceded thinking the dark grey semi gloss would be good enough. Nope, to much glare. Sides have to much also. Have to actively come up with a fix for this which will probably involved curtains.

Good picture with the glare:

post #172 of 814
Next time:

-more and better lighting. As someone else posted, six sconces does not give enough lighting for a 12 x 25 room. Some of things I need are lighting for seeing how to get to your seat, lighting for reading that DVD case, lighting for viewing settings on equipment, etc.

-design seating before construction done. As it turns out, due to PJ mounting, screen size and ridiculously low ceiling (6' 10" - digging down would have tripled costs), I will have to have a riser for 2nd row. Would have been nice to contruct and install BEFORE finish work and carpet in...

-ventilation. I have good airflow in, but the HVAC contractor didn't deal with exhausting stale air. I will have to install some hack to vent stale air somehow.

-lighting automation. Crestron was completely out of my price range, yet I didn't find out about lesser cost alternatives. It's really a hassle to get up and fumble in the dark for the light switch after/during a movie.

-room treatment. In the typical sized basement theater, you can't have too much bass trapping. I wish I had incorporated bass traps into the design. It's a lot more disruptive (and much lower in WAF) to do this after the fact.
post #173 of 814
Quote:
Originally Posted by tleavit View Post

3) Flat black paint on ceiling. I knew I needed it, pushed my wife for it and conceded thinking the dark grey semi gloss would be good enough. Nope, to much glare.

The problem isn't the color, it's the gloss. Any color semi-gloss (or satin or eggshell) is wrong for a theater viewing area.
post #174 of 814
Quote:
Originally Posted by gdc View Post

Next time:

-lighting automation. Crestron was completely out of my price range, yet I didn't find out about lesser cost alternatives. It's really a hassle to get up and fumble in the dark for the light switch after/during a movie.

You can retrofit with Insteon or Z-Wave or X10 or something else.
post #175 of 814
Had a new one from last night. I finished stapling all the fabric to the walls (some 12,000 staples later) and measured the columns just to make sure I had the width right. I found that the space for 4 of the columns is 19" and for the other two columns is only 17.5".

My wife and I both put up the furring strips, so I don't know which one of us put it on the wrong side of the line. But either way, I should have checked before putting up the fabric. Luckily, I bought a few yards extra!
post #176 of 814
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kevin_Wadsworth View Post

Had a new one from last night. I finished stapling all the fabric to the walls (some 12,000 staples later) and measured the columns just to make sure I had the width right. I found that the space for 4 of the columns is 19" and for the other two columns is only 17.5".

My wife and I both put up the furring strips, so I don't know which one of us put it on the wrong side of the line. But either way, I should have checked before putting up the fabric. Luckily, I bought a few yards extra!

Hence the "Column Test Jig":



Seriously, that sucks. But it sounds like two of your panels are too wide? (Thus leaving too little room for those columns?)

If so, why do you need extra fabric? Can't you cut the fabric along the staples, move the furring strip over, and re-staple?
post #177 of 814
Here's some more after finishing my first tape/spackle job:

* use the paper tape, not the mesh. The paper tape takes a little longer to get the hang of but its a little easier to cover smoothly in the 2nd and third coats.

* do the least conspicuous wall first. you will get better as you go along. I was dumb enough to do the most prominent wall first.

* for the first coat of mud, water down the compound a little bit. It makes life so much easier. A pro taper suggested that to me.

* Wet the tape in water just before you put it up and try to get all the mud out from under it in one long smooth swipe. dont keep trying to make it better with more mud, you will make it worse. its good if you can still see the tape. 2nd and 3rd coats will take care of it.

* lightly sand (dont scrape) between coats.

* use the sponge sanders. Those pro sand blocks and screens dont give you a good feel.

*its the most boring and disgusting phase of the process. if you take your time you will be very happy when its all over.
post #178 of 814
Quote:
Originally Posted by accts4mjs View Post

Is there a point outside your room you could get to and make part of the run the plastic wire reinforced tubing stuff (does that make sense -- it's all through my attic). I originally ran all metal from my fan to the vents in my room for exhausting heat and you could really hear the fan (panasonic whisper fan) and I took a 1-2' section and replaced it with the plastic ducting and it's whisper quiet now (no metal to transfer vibration would be my guess).

Don't know your house so don't know how possible (nor am I an HVAC expert) but thought I'd offer.

Mike

Using this conduit also allows you to make bends in the conduit furthering reducing sound transmission from the HT. Everyone should use this product for HT ductwork.
post #179 of 814
Quote:
Originally Posted by Stereodude View Post

My house isn't even finished being built yet, but I already know what I'll do next time. I'll make sure there isn't a steel I-beam holding up floor joists running through my theater.

Why? I have this across my HT and, according to my CI, he wishes that all of his projects had these to break standing waves.
post #180 of 814
Quote:
Originally Posted by scaesare View Post

Hence the "Column Test Jig":



Seriously, that sucks. But it sounds like two of your panels are too wide? (Thus leaving too little room for those columns?)

If so, why do you need extra fabric? Can't you cut the fabric along the staples, move the furring strip over, and re-staple?

I did manage exactly what you suggested - cutting the fabric, moving the furring strip, and restapling worked. The extra fabric was in case it didn't.
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