Planning an open theater in basement - AVS Forum | Home Theater Discussions And Reviews
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post #1 of 6 Old 12-07-2019, 11:04 AM - Thread Starter
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Planning an open theater in basement

I am planning to build my basement with HT and do a total in wall and in ceiling setup for speakers. Preferably 7.2.2 and expand it to 7.2.4. I am new to this world and trying to do best I can with my limited knowledge. Please ignore the rookie mistakes.

Total basement size is close to 1500 sq ft. Home theater area is around 18 * 23ft( Planning to put a full bath and bar at the behind). Height of the ceiling is 8ft to 9ft depending upon the ducts.

Planning to insulate the ceiling and walls on side and back( around HT area) with Rocksul. One side is open and trying to figure out a way to cover it with acoustic curtains or keep it open.

So far got the demo of Paradigm CI PRO 3 (7.1.4)with Anthem AVR and SVS 16 ultra sealed woofer. and Focal IW1003BE series(5.1.2 and way out of my budget) with Macintosh avr and SVS SB 16 Ultra. I didn't like the sound of Focal was very bright for my taste. I like CI PRO which was very close to warm and neutral. Dialogue clarity was much better with Paradigm.

Please help me with my questions below.

- My total budget for HT Speakers is close to 6k to 7k including 2 woofer. If you guys can suggest in wall setup and speakers in this range for my open HT. I am trying to get demo of as many speakers as I can but most of the dealers they do not have in walls for Demo. May be some of you can share your personal experience. I have narrowed down my list to following speakers

-- Focal 300 IW( Not sure after getting demo of IW 1003Be)
-- Paradigm CI Pro 3( I like the setup but hardly any reviews online or on forum)
-- Goldean Ear Invisa SPS(many good reviews- none from the users)
-- KEF Ci04100ql( My friend has done 7.2.2 setup (2 PSA sealed woofer with denon avr and outlaw 7 chanel AMP)) in a proper enclosed area build by custom Installer). I like his in wall setup but this speakers may not do well with my open area. Other KEF IW LCR are out of my budget)

If you can add more speakers to the list based on your experience and my budget will help.

- 2nd Should I do all my surrounds in ceiling. I have 2 pillars on the open side of basement. I can build an enclosure and try to fit the speakers IW. See picture attached. Sitting area will be 13 to 14ft

-3rd Does it make sense to put an acoustic curtain on the open side. Also, ideas with Acoustic treatment for my open space and surrounding walls.

-4th I am planning to get 2 SVS pb 2000 woofer, will this be enough to cover my open space or do I need a bigger woofer. Also any other recommendation.

Once again sorry for the laundry list of questions.

Please help this rookie out.
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post #2 of 6 Old 12-09-2019, 05:17 AM
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I'll try to help to the best of my abilities:


Don't go with only two atmos speakers, specially if you are planning to upgrade to 4 atmos. 2 atmos speakers don't add up much to a more conventional 7.2 setup. On the other hand, 4 Atmos make a huge difference. Also, atmos speaker placement in a 7.2.2 setup can not be reused for 7.2.4 so you will end up with two holes in the ceiling to cover. If any, go 7.2 and wire the ceiling for future upgrades


Try to avoid in ceiling surrounds: the surround feeling is a bit weird IMO.

Cheers
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post #3 of 6 Old 12-09-2019, 07:47 AM
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I'm sure you have a good reason, but why can't you build a wall on that side of the theater? Enclosing your HT would make things a lot simpler. It would be pretty easy and inexpensive to build a 2x4 wall and drywall it. You could always take it down if you wanted later if you sold the house or no longer wanted a dedicated HT room.


My opinion is that mounting your speakers in columns (on on/in the wall if you build a wall which I recommend) would be better than ceiling mounted for surrounds. I think mounting them in the ceiling would really get in the way of the Atmos effects.

I'd prewire for 9.x.6 if you can - It's easier to do it now even if you don't use them all now. I agree with Oria34 that I would do 4 Atmos speakers instead of 2, even if I had to do a 5.x.4 system rather than a 7.x.2 system.

Instead of in wall speakers for the L/C/R what about using an acoustically transparent screen and putting your speakers behind it? It's a clean look and the sound actually comes from the screen so it feels more natural. That would open up your speaker choices a bit as in-walls are excessively expensive for what you get. That being said if you need in-walls, Triad seems to be well thought of.


You will need acoustic treatments to get the best sound. I think you want roughly 1/3 reflection, 1/3 absorbtion, and 1/3 diffusion. Acoustimac sells panels with Owens Corning 703 or other acoutical treatments (for absorbtion) pretty inexpensively, and even materials for DIY if you prefer. Don't skimp on the treatments as the room makes more difference than any speaker or componant.

That's a good size room, and if you leave it open to the rest of the basement a HUGE space. IMO, the PB2000 would be marginal if you close it off, but no where near enough sub if you leave it open. Subs will try and fill the whole space. Look at DIY for options here, as you will need some major output.

You'll need a bright projector for that size screen and a completly light controlled room.

Paint the walls and ceilings dark colors and use black velvet where possible.

7.4.4 Theater Room: JVC-RS500, Silver Ticket AT 2.35:1 142”, Onkyo RZ830, Anthem PVA-7, Panasonic UB420, Apple TV 4K, JBL Studio 530’s, 4 - 15" DIY Sealed Subs

3.1 Living Room: Samsung 64” F8500 Plasma, Anthem MRX 300, Dynaudio Audience 52’s, Dynaudio Audience 122C, NHT SubOne, Roku Express (2019)
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post #4 of 6 Old 12-09-2019, 05:04 PM
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+1 to whether you would be open to enclosing the space.

You would also gain a symmetrical side wall, which would improve the audio immensely and eliminate the windows bleeding light, which would help maximize the dynamic range of the video.


Open concept is giving up a lot of high end features that can be implemented inexpensively. Most people don't even consider the elimination of a low noise floor, when talking open concept.
You loose a lot of dynamic range in any given sound system.
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post #5 of 6 Old 12-10-2019, 08:25 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Oria34 View Post
I'll try to help to the best of my abilities:


Don't go with only two atmos speakers, specially if you are planning to upgrade to 4 atmos. 2 atmos speakers don't add up much to a more conventional 7.2 setup. On the other hand, 4 Atmos make a huge difference. Also, atmos speaker placement in a 7.2.2 setup can not be reused for 7.2.4 so you will end up with two holes in the ceiling to cover. If any, go 7.2 and wire the ceiling for future upgrades


Try to avoid in ceiling surrounds: the surround feeling is a bit weird IMO.

Cheers
Thank you for the feedback. It make sense to get 4 atmos done. My AVR will not support 7.2.4 will need external Amp to power the front LCR.
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post #6 of 6 Old 12-10-2019, 09:24 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mocs123 View Post
I'm sure you have a good reason, but why can't you build a wall on that side of the theater? Enclosing your HT would make things a lot simpler. It would be pretty easy and inexpensive to build a 2x4 wall and drywall it. You could always take it down if you wanted later if you sold the house or no longer wanted a dedicated HT room.


My opinion is that mounting your speakers in columns (on on/in the wall if you build a wall which I recommend) would be better than ceiling mounted for surrounds. I think mounting them in the ceiling would really get in the way of the Atmos effects.

I'd prewire for 9.x.6 if you can - It's easier to do it now even if you don't use them all now. I agree with Oria34 that I would do 4 Atmos speakers instead of 2, even if I had to do a 5.x.4 system rather than a 7.x.2 system.

Instead of in wall speakers for the L/C/R what about using an acoustically transparent screen and putting your speakers behind it? It's a clean look and the sound actually comes from the screen so it feels more natural. That would open up your speaker choices a bit as in-walls are excessively expensive for what you get. That being said if you need in-walls, Triad seems to be well thought of.


You will need acoustic treatments to get the best sound. I think you want roughly 1/3 reflection, 1/3 absorbtion, and 1/3 diffusion. Acoustimac sells panels with Owens Corning 703 or other acoutical treatments (for absorbtion) pretty inexpensively, and even materials for DIY if you prefer. Don't skimp on the treatments as the room makes more difference than any speaker or componant.

That's a good size room, and if you leave it open to the rest of the basement a HUGE space. IMO, the PB2000 would be marginal if you close it off, but no where near enough sub if you leave it open. Subs will try and fill the whole space. Look at DIY for options here, as you will need some major output.

You'll need a bright projector for that size screen and a completly light controlled room.

Paint the walls and ceilings dark colors and use black velvet where possible.
Keeping it open was mainly because of 2 reasons. Wife wants more space for kids to play freely and my builder has given my rough in(for bath), electrical and water connection on walls right opposite to projector screen I have currently planned. If I put a wall, good area of my basement will be closed, for this reasons I thought of including an acoustic sound proof curtain on the open side to control as much as I can.

I will see If I can move my screen on other side and build a wall and not compromise with open space. Will have to built door to access the connection behind the screen and move the rough in some place else(Already paid a lot to get it done).

I will look into Triad and get a demo. Any suggestion for the on wall speakers and acoustic screens. I want to avoid towers with my young kids, don't want them poking around.

I will go with the Atmos 7.2.4 setup.

What do you suggest for subs for the open space. What size and any recommendation. Budget is tight and want to spend where is necessary.

Acousticmac looks good (will definitely get some treatment done).
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