Well, I had written of the expansion possiblity due to cost and places the money should have been saved/spent...finally got a couple of contractors out that are reputable and reasonable. It looks like the suggestion of the larger shed style dormer will be taken. The gross third floor area is 28x47 internally..measured with carpenter last night. The placement of the staircase limits the legnth of the HT room to about 26. I would like to shift the staircase a bit, and put a landing and turn in, but they are efficiently stacked now and that would cut into headroom in a bedroom. It actually works out well though, as I won't get the height/width to optimally add a third row in here regardless, and the other area can be used to make a really nice sized lounge space and PJ/equip room. I'll end up with somewhere between 18.5 and 19ft of width and the 26' of legnth (minus the space behind the screen, which should be ok at 2 feet with a baffle wall rather than a deep space to help imaging etc while eating up room real estate). The height is tricky and I'll leave our final plan to Shawn, but on the very outside edges, the lowest points, it should be 8'6". Bring the soffits in a foot and I'm up over 9'6". I figure I'll need at least that for proper 2nd row viewing angle without obstruction....it seems 21" for the riser is the right height. I'm trying for 180" scope and that will leave me about foot of height for stage and be able to tuck the framing of the screen in under the soffit.
On the quipment front, I purchased a nice trio of the JBL 4722's and 2453h-sl cds. I'll play with them while the HT is getting put together and likely get the Be diaphragms and go active. Trying to decide now if I'll put the JBL SCS8 all around, surr and heights, or if the 8340 type surround and scs heights....I'm honestly leaning toward the SCS8 all around. I've had them before and was impressed by them.
Anyway, it's a really exciting development for me in the HT!! Entertaining one more bid from a friend of a friend and hopefully able to get permit pulled and start work before the end of the month. I'd wait for Shawn to be ready, but in the end I just have to be concerned, at this point, with creating the largest, tallest space I can. Once that's done, he can speck the inside framing for me and I'll get the tools out.