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post #1 of 4 Old 05-06-2015, 09:55 PM - Thread Starter
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New Theater Build in Rental Home

Hello! I just moved into a 3000 sq ft rental home and there is an extra room that we have that we have no idea what to do with so we decided to make it into a reading/library room and a home theater. The thing is that because we are renting, we cannot put wires through walls or anything. It is a huge room at 16'x16'! Attached are some photos of the room. The problem we have is that we have a fan that we have to keep since we don't own the house that comes down 1' 7" off the ceiling. We also have a sliding door and a thin window that have blinds that work which blocks out the light! We want to keep the bookcase that we have in the back of the room still! Do you have any suggestions on what to do in here?
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post #2 of 4 Old 05-07-2015, 06:24 AM
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As far as the room goes, there's not a whole lot you can do without mesing with construction. At best, you can get some advice on where to place on-wall absorbers at reflection points and maybe some bass traps in the corners.

I think you really only have two choice for video, both of which require installing a mounting bracket. You can mount a big screen on the wall (I'd be looking at 85") or you can take down the fan (and store it until you move out) and mount a projector up there and make a light weight fixed screen to mount on the wall with picture hangers. Either way you'll have holes in the wall or cieling to fix. I would get some stands for the surrounds to minimize holes in the wall. You can run the wires along the carpet under the baseboard or use wire moulding to hide it and probably a combination of both to hide it up the wall.

If you can, I'd paint the front wall a really dark color (if, not black) and at least darken up the side walls and ceiling.

Good luck!

Tom Logan
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post #3 of 4 Old 05-07-2015, 06:19 PM
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What you could do is set up the projector and project on the side wall by the door (photo 1). Just use the wall as the screen. Mount the projector on the ceiling (3 screws) and one screw to hold the cords, or put an inexpensive wire "book case" and use the top shelf for the projector (inverted - upside down).

While I don't have a rental, I kept mine temporary since we are getting the heck out of the DC area in two years. All wires run along the wall and I can have everything down and patched/painted in a few hours. Since it is in the basement, it only has to be functional and not for show.

Pictures: projector/mount, wall/screen, Walmart light blocking curtains over the upper window and sliding glass door (door also has vertical blinds), and a cheap Amazon Garland "town center" ploy (ie. light weight) rug on the side.

I put up the rug and it does a great job of reducing reflected light. Unfortunately I nailed it up, but while covering other areas with a second rug, I found it is easier to cut a rug in strips and use blu-tac to secure it to the wall. At $39 a rug, it would make a great border for a screen by cutting it into sections. A $79 dark 7x10 indoor outdoor rug covers the off-white carpet under the screen to reduce reflected light.
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post #4 of 4 Old 05-08-2015, 06:04 AM
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Steve1106 -

Nice job. I kind of forgot about just using the wall as a screen. YOu get wrpped up in your own build and forget about some things.

Paint is cheap. There are MANY version of "screen paint" in the DIY Screen section from bright white, to (I think it was HD that had a) silver screen in a can, to any of the various concoctions in that thread. Then I still recommend over paint the screen area, then tape off to the size you want, paint the wall a dark color. Then it's easy enough to paint over on move-out.

I also like the idea of mounting the projector on a shelf. You can then use the shelf for equipment to get it behind you using an IR extender or an RF converter, or video/CD storage. Maybe I'm showing my age....does anybody store CDs anymore?

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