Rob Hahn Theater build - Page 12 - AVS Forum | Home Theater Discussions And Reviews
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post #331 of 443 Old 03-15-2017, 11:24 PM
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A visit to this unbelievable theater could cost me a lot.

<snip>

There was the very first actual home theater I had ever seen, complete with a Sony 1271 projector, Stewart Screen, Snell THX speakers and a Frox Control System.
So true, so true! The first home theater I ever saw belonged to a friend of my Dad's -- a fellow doctor -- and also included a Frox control system. Dad took me to see the setup when I was a teenager.

Fast-forward a couple of decades, and my own home theater borrows some ideas from that first one. In particular, I have easy behind-the-rack access through a closet. What a time and aggravation saver that is!

Mike Kobb
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post #332 of 443 Old 03-16-2017, 09:21 AM
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So true, so true! The first home theater I ever saw belonged to a friend of my Dad's -- a fellow doctor -- and also included a Frox control system. Dad took me to see the setup when I was a teenager.

Fast-forward a couple of decades, and my own home theater borrows some ideas from that first one. In particular, I have easy behind-the-rack access through a closet. What a time and aggravation saver that is!
@JustMike Just checked out your room. Stunning. A Seaton sub man to boot.

When I did my first theater, i put all of the equipment behind the screen but to access it, had to literally crawl under the screen to do any work. Next (and subsequent) theaters, all of the equipment was in another room with easy access.

Given your K relationship, you have to be impressed what the Frox system did 25 years ago --- so, so, so far ahead of it's time.

By the way, I love the K products. They just need a 4K version of the DV700 and a 4K drive in the Strato. In the meantime, I thoroughly enjoy my Alto and DV700.
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post #333 of 443 Old 03-16-2017, 10:31 AM
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Originally Posted by audioguy View Post
A visit to this unbelievable theater could cost me a lot.

About 25 years ago, I wandered into a high end store in Beverly Hills (Christopher Hansen Audio), thinking I would be listening to a lot of great 2 channel gear. I had visited their previously. I walked into the rear portion of the store, and there was the very first actual home theater I had ever seen, complete with a Sony 1271 projector, Stewart Screen, Snell THX speakers and a Frox Control System (way ahead of it's time). I was blown away and mesmerized. I went home and copied it almost exactly, including the Frox System. And it has not stopped since, even after semi-retirement. I can't count, nor will I, what I have spent in the last 25 years trying to make it better. Probably not a lot less than Rob has invested in his theater.

A visit to Rob's home, I have no doubt, would probably re-kindle the same addiction enthusiastic response, and I would end up in the poor house ..... and probably divorced.

There are some things better imagined than seen. Plus, he probably would not appreciate me drooling all over his theater.

I have many memories of the Sony VPH series projectors I used to work with them in a professional capacity and I spent many days and nights in dark rooms getting them set up and converged. My first home theater had a VPH-1020Q, which I later upgraded to a 1270Q. I was eventually going to upgrade to a 1271 or 1272, but never quite got around to it.
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post #334 of 443 Old 03-17-2017, 01:16 PM - Thread Starter
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How does this one look?

Sorry this took so long. I asked Keith to reply directly so that the info would be correct. (I'll post this also in the HT of the Month: Hahn Theater thread):

Question 1: Is the upper trace the Theater’s target and/or measured response?
No. The upper trace is the level (in dB) vs. frequency in one-third octave bands (in Hz) of a special dodecahedron (12-sided) test speaker designed to distribute very high levels of sound omnidirectionally so that we can take a reading in the room, and other readings outside the room. The difference between those readings gives us the room envelope’s “transmission loss” at various frequencies. The test speaker’s “frequency response” is not of primary interest because what we’re looking for is not this or that response shape, we’re looking for what the TL curve looks like (the red line). A TL measurement doesn’t tell us anything about the response in either the source or receive rooms. TL isn’t a property of a speaker, but of the wall, ceiling, door, or other room element that come between a speaker – any speaker -- and a microphone. Make sense?

Question 2: The red line is the noise reduction [of the walls, doors, etc.] between the test speaker in the Theater and the bedroom?
Yes.

Question 3: The black line at the bottom is the frequency response in the bedroom?
The black lower trace is not frequency response, but rather the spectrum and level you get in the bedroom when you fill the Theater with the noise shown in the upper trace. It shows what makes it through the walls, doors etc. If we change the upper black trace – by adding a bunch more speakers to drive the level in the Theater to even more ear-splitting dB readings for example – the lower trace will go up as well. What doesn’t change is the red line showing the NR properties of the walls, etc. Fix the TL – that is, fix the walls, doors, etc. – and you fix your noise leakage problem, pretty much irrespective of your speaker’s “frequency response.”

Hope that helps.

-Keith

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post #335 of 443 Old 03-18-2017, 05:15 AM
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post #336 of 443 Old 03-23-2017, 08:58 AM
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Just out of curiosity, what made you go with M2's behind the screen? Seems like you could of fit any speaker you wanted for L/C/R duties and the rest of your speaker selection is either from the commercial cinema line of stuff or touring.
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post #337 of 443 Old 03-23-2017, 03:04 PM
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Just out of curiosity, what made you go with M2's behind the screen? Seems like you could of fit any speaker you wanted for L/C/R duties and the rest of your speaker selection is either from the commercial cinema line of stuff or touring.
Not to answer for him but he listened to Keith Yate's advise and demoed speakers that came as close as possible to the sound he was after and Keith told him he could make them sound even closer to the sound which Rob was seeking. They aren't the loudest speakers he could have chose that's for sure but they are one of the best at their job for coverage in large spaces along with dang near perfect FR instantly in most cases. They do not have a hint of horn in them either which is a huge plus for those that want fatigue free full sound.
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post #338 of 443 Old 03-23-2017, 04:38 PM
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Originally Posted by audiovideoholic View Post
Not to answer for him but he listened to Keith Yate's advise and demoed speakers that came as close as possible to the sound he was after and Keith told him he could make them sound even closer to the sound which Rob was seeking. They aren't the loudest speakers he could have chose that's for sure but they are one of the best at their job for coverage in large spaces along with dang near perfect FR instantly in most cases. They do not have a hint of horn in them either which is a huge plus for those that want fatigue free full sound.
Yes they are remarkable sounding speakers with excellent dispersion, even in the higher frequencies. I'm wondering if he ever finds their output lacking in his particular application with a room that size.
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post #339 of 443 Old 03-24-2017, 06:51 AM
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Yes they are remarkable sounding speakers with excellent dispersion, even in the higher frequencies. I'm wondering if he ever finds their output lacking in his particular application with a room that size.
Read ChopShops review from when he went over there. He said he would have liked it just a bit louder but Rob is really pleased with the output as I'm sure it does above reference or Keith wouldn't have installed them. Reference in that room with 50-70% wall coverage of diffusion will sound less loud than it truly is so that will also play a role in precieved loudness.
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post #340 of 443 Old 03-26-2017, 03:33 PM
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Read ChopShops review from when he went over there. He said he would have liked it just a bit louder but Rob is really pleased with the output as I'm sure it does above reference or Keith wouldn't have installed them. Reference in that room with 50-70% wall coverage of diffusion will sound less loud than it truly is so that will also play a role in precieved loudness.
Not sure but you could be right regarding a diffusive room seeming to be a little less loud than what your sound-level meter may suggest. If true, I guess I'd consider it a possibly useful side effect rather than one of the specific goals of our interior acoustic treatment (IAT) plan for Rob's room.

To clarify, I chose the diffuser models and locations in the Hahn Theater not to make the perceived sound a little louder or quieter, but to impart a "halo" effect (as in the famous paintings of Giotto, Masaccio and many others), in which the room appears to glow in a beautifully warm, clear but nondescript way. (Separate topic.)

In experimenting with engineered diffusers over the years, one of the early takeaways was that just distributing them around the room as a "palliative" was a hit-or-miss affair: I might luck out once in a while but there was a greater chance that we'd only get the client's money's worth out of them when they were integrated into a thought-through process to answer:
  1. the basic room/spkr/audience playback geometry question;
  2. the LCR rad-pat & aiming question; and
  3. the physical & perceptual performance targets question.
Basically we want to know what spectrum of room-reflected energy is hitting the audience from what directions at what points in time. There are sophisticated acoustics tools out there to help break it down, but they're of little practical use unless you feed them designs that get all three things playing well together from the get-go. In Rob's room we not only did this analysis during the design phase but also brought in a special 3D microphone during calibration to let us look deeper into the spatial and temporal parts of the puzzle. (We think of it as "a microphone with a college education.")

-Keith
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post #341 of 443 Old 03-26-2017, 05:02 PM
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Not sure but you could be right regarding a diffusive room seeming to be a little less loud than what your sound-level meter may suggest. If true, I guess I'd consider it a possibly useful side effect rather than one of the specific goals of our interior acoustic treatment (IAT) plan for Rob's room.

To clarify, I chose the diffuser models and locations in the Hahn Theater not to make the perceived sound a little louder or quieter, but to impart a "halo" effect (as in the famous paintings of Giotto, Masaccio and many others), in which the room appears to glow in a beautifully warm, clear but nondescript way. (Separate topic.)

In experimenting with engineered diffusers over the years, one of the early takeaways was that just distributing them around the room as a "palliative" was a hit-or-miss affair: I might luck out once in a while but there was a greater chance that we'd only get the client's money's worth out of them when they were integrated into a thought-through process to answer:
  1. the basic room/spkr/audience playback geometry question;
  2. the LCR rad-pat & aiming question; and
  3. the physical & perceptual performance targets question.
Basically we want to know what spectrum of room-reflected energy is hitting the audience from what directions at what points in time. There are sophisticated acoustics tools out there to help break it down, but they're of little practical use unless you feed them designs that get all three things playing well together from the get-go. In Rob's room we not only did this analysis during the design phase but also brought in a special 3D microphone during calibration to let us look deeper into the spatial and temporal parts of the puzzle. (We think of it as "a microphone with a college education.")

-Keith
Oh I completely agree and hope my statements didn't suggest the treatments were tools for anything to do with spl/loudness in any way. I just wish the tools and experience that's needed to pull off a space like Rob's/many of your others was achievable by us mere mortals. During our 30 minute phone conversation I probably learned more than hours of researching the net full of misconceptions ;-)
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post #342 of 443 Old 03-26-2017, 05:58 PM
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Oh I completely agree and hope my statements didn't suggest the treatments were tools for anything to do with spl/loudness in any way. I just wish the tools and experience that's needed to pull off a space like Rob's/many of your others was achievable by us mere mortals. During our 30 minute phone conversation I probably learned more than hours of researching the net full of misconceptions ;-)
Thanks, my pleasure. I don't get to spend much time on AVS or any other forum but it strikes me there's a lot of enthusiastic energy here trying to chase down answers. Happy to chime in when I can!

Rob has a lot to be proud of, including how much of himself he devoted to getting it right, detail by detail, day by day, year by year ... and then documenting the project and sharing with fellow enthusiasts what he and the team were trying to pull off.

As everyone can probably tell, it's not a show-off, hey-look-what-I've-got thing with Rob. It comes from a different place. When the lights dim, I think Rob sees himself and everyone in the audience as equals, everyone sitting in the dark, jaws slowly going slack, getting pulled into a life, a time, a story up on that screen, everyone touched and changed by it. It can be a powerful thing, bigger than any of us.

Rob is the one-in-a-million enthusiast who wants to share. I suspect that sensitivity was one of the things that made him a great cinematographer; he doesn't just have the eye for it, or just the ear for it. He feels it.

I said "one-in-a-million" but the truth is, that doesn't quite do him justice.

-Keith
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post #343 of 443 Old 03-29-2017, 08:21 PM - Thread Starter
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Yes they are remarkable sounding speakers with excellent dispersion, even in the higher frequencies. I'm wondering if he ever finds their output lacking in his particular application with a room that size.
In a word, no. And yes, Chop said he could have had a little more volume here and there but frankly I'm not sure that would have been healthy! :-) When Art sat in the money seat, he said his jaw was vibrating from the intensity & decibel levels. "War of the Worlds" and "The Revenant" are simply awe-inspiring. The M2's provide more than enough oomph without falling apart. My system plays very loudly, though that's not exactly the proper description. It plays very powerfully. The system is beautifully balanced and because the room doesn't ring (at all), the _quality_ of the power is what you notice. It just sucks you in & envelops you, with zero listening fatigue.

-Rob

https://www.avsforum.com/forum/86-ult...-rob-hahn.html

https://www.avsforum.com/forum/92-com...n-theater.html

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post #344 of 443 Old 03-30-2017, 08:36 AM
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I feel a little compelled to chime in as well. My visit to Rob's place was one of my absolute favorite HT/Audio experiences ever! The room is just beyond fantastic, and as Rob said, the balance of all factors involved is what does this, I believe. Without the proper budget, designer, willingness to do whatever it takes, equipment selection, etc etc, it just couldn't be what it is. Being 100% honest, I believe I do listen/watch at fairly higher levels typically than Rob. I was not about to ask him to push harder in that room, because I felt it would be disrespectful...that is his room, his gear and the sacrifices he must have made for it are tremendous....I'd never ask it be pushed harder because I'm a volume/impact junky. I think the room still had some left to go volume wise, but how much I could not say by any means. I had a chat with a friend last night about this.....there are a handful of us (and what any of us have cant compete with Rob's room quality) who just push volume and impact to..well, as Rob said, maybe unhealthy places. Blurred vision and a stomach ache means the LF system is just about capable enough We've also had the discussions about the car audio days, and the fact that having 150db capable sub systems in vehicles makes it near impossible to feel a sub system in the home/theater environment is capable enough. I also think, in fairness, many of us enjoy a particular curve and particular exagerration in certain frequency ranges, so that certainly impacts our thoughts as well. It's funny though, I do find myself beginning to like more balance and a bit less on the volume knob, but that's still ref + The super outlandish levels are reserved for the sessions when you just want to get silly.
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post #345 of 443 Old 03-31-2017, 12:57 AM - Thread Starter
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I feel a little compelled to chime in as well. My visit to Rob's place was one of my absolute favorite HT/Audio experiences ever! The room is just beyond fantastic, and as Rob said, the balance of all factors involved is what does this, I believe. Without the proper budget, designer, willingness to do whatever it takes, equipment selection, etc etc, it just couldn't be what it is. Being 100% honest, I believe I do listen/watch at fairly higher levels typically than Rob. I was not about to ask him to push harder in that room, because I felt it would be disrespectful...that is his room, his gear and the sacrifices he must have made for it are tremendous....I'd never ask it be pushed harder because I'm a volume/impact junky. I think the room still had some left to go volume wise, but how much I could not say by any means. I had a chat with a friend last night about this.....there are a handful of us (and what any of us have cant compete with Rob's room quality) who just push volume and impact to..well, as Rob said, maybe unhealthy places. Blurred vision and a stomach ache means the LF system is just about capable enough We've also had the discussions about the car audio days, and the fact that having 150db capable sub systems in vehicles makes it near impossible to feel a sub system in the home/theater environment is capable enough. I also think, in fairness, many of us enjoy a particular curve and particular exagerration in certain frequency ranges, so that certainly impacts our thoughts as well. It's funny though, I do find myself beginning to like more balance and a bit less on the volume knob, but that's still ref + The super outlandish levels are reserved for the sessions when you just want to get silly.
You're right - the room (& the system) can take quite a bit more volume. It's funny, but I always keep the volume a little off its peak out of respect for the guest! I never knew you wanted more until after you left.... Oh well.

Because the room doesn't ring, the M2's (and the rest) don't have to work as hard to blow your eardrums (if that's what you want). Keith Yates had some people he wanted to _really_ experience my theater on Monday, so I showed "War of the Worlds' and played it at a much higher volume than I did when you here (sorry - I didn't know). After the clip was over, no one moved a muscle. They were just stunned. It was pretty awesome.

-Rob

https://www.avsforum.com/forum/86-ult...-rob-hahn.html

https://www.avsforum.com/forum/92-com...n-theater.html
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post #346 of 443 Old 03-31-2017, 12:38 PM
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You're right - the room (& the system) can take quite a bit more volume. It's funny, but I always keep the volume a little off its peak out of respect for the guest! I never knew you wanted more until after you left.... Oh well.

Because the room doesn't ring, the M2's (and the rest) don't have to work as hard to blow your eardrums (if that's what you want). Keith Yates had some people he wanted to _really_ experience my theater on Monday, so I showed "War of the Worlds' and played it at a much higher volume than I did when you here (sorry - I didn't know). After the clip was over, no one moved a muscle. They were just stunned. It was pretty awesome.

-Rob

https://www.avsforum.com/forum/86-ult...-rob-hahn.html

https://www.avsforum.com/forum/92-com...n-theater.html
My plan is that once my kids go off to college, I'm planning on doing up my HT right. When that day comes, I hope to make a pilgrimage to your HT. (And hire Keith Yates if I can afford him!)
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post #347 of 443 Old 03-31-2017, 01:16 PM
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This is a room where no film is worthy. Spectacular.

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post #348 of 443 Old 03-31-2017, 04:22 PM
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First let me say this room is awesome and Keith really outdid himself. Rob you sound like a great guy and have one heck of a room. Very inspiring.

I wanted to mention that there is some research to show that speakers with lower levels of distortion are perceived as being less loud. That distortion actually impacts how we perceive loudness. Investigation into the horn sound also found that the hard edge and brittle brightness of horns that users reported was partly an artifact of non linear distortion in the horn. These findings came from Dr Geddes, and I believe Floyd Toole has also discussed this.

I wouldn't be surprised if this system is perceived as being less loud partly because it is so much more linear than an average system or one based on the commercial line (even JBL has advised that their home line speakers sound better in a home than their commercial line).


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post #349 of 443 Old 04-01-2017, 02:33 PM
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Just read this thread word for word this morning....rainy day here, what better to do than sit in bed and read HT porn...anyhow the wife is sitting next to me, going "what's that?" and I was up to the photos showing the footings etc. She said "wow, well we could just build something that size stand alone somewhere on the property" (which 110 acres, but then you cant just wander into it with your pajamas on at 2:00am)

Hook. Line. Sinker......give me 10-15 years

Not sure even our (very large) off grid solar/battery/diesel power system would run this room.

Rob, do you know the average power usage when the room is going full tilt?

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post #350 of 443 Old 04-01-2017, 03:05 PM - Thread Starter
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This is a room where no film is worthy. Spectacular.
Thank you so much! Actually your comment got me thinking - the rationale behind building my theater is for the opposite reason: I felt that (more often than not), theaters were not worthy of the films they were showing. As a cinematographer, I work so hard for so many months and months, sweating zillions of details, only to be horrified when the film is shown to the world in substandard conditions, sabotaged by terrible projection, harsh grating sound systems and/or a bad room. (Btw, the projection doesn't have to be awful - if it's only very slightly flawed, it will still dilute the overall impact of a film).

In other words, if the final delivery system is imperfect (the system that is meant to be the conduit to the filmmaker's intention), then audiences aren't getting the emotional and artistic wallop the filmmakers were hoping for when they carefully crafted their movie.

That's why I wanted to have a theater that would present films in their best possible 'party dress' so that an audience could experience to the fullest degree possible what the filmmakers were intending to express when they made their film. It's extraordinary to show "On the Waterfront" or "Lawrence of Arabia" to someone who's never seen these films on a large screen (or never seen them at all) and watch (and share with them) their amazement in the awesome experience of seeing a great film presented _properly_. They never forget it because there's nothing like it. Every detail in my theater is made to enhance that one of a kind experience.

Of course, there are some fantastic commercial theaters, no doubt. But I sadly don't live in an area where I have easy access to those amazing theaters. So, I built my own!

-Rob

https://www.avsforum.com/forum/86-ult...-rob-hahn.html

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post #351 of 443 Old 04-01-2017, 03:10 PM - Thread Starter
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Just read this thread word for word this morning....rainy day here, what better to do than sit in bed and read HT porn...anyhow the wife is sitting next to me, going "what's that?" and I was up to the photos showing the footings etc. She said "wow, well we could just build something that size stand alone somewhere on the property" (which 110 acres, but then you cant just wander into it with your pajamas on at 2:00am)

Hook. Line. Sinker......give me 10-15 years

Not sure even our (very large) off grid solar/battery/diesel power system would run this room.

Rob, do you know the average power usage when the room is going full tilt?
I love it! 110 acres? Wow - you can just build a tunnel or an overpass to get to it!

I actually don't know the answer to that question. Maybe Keith will chime in (if he's lurking). Good luck on your build! Let me know in 15 years when it's done - I'll come & see it - we can compare notes!

-Rob

https://www.avsforum.com/forum/86-ult...-rob-hahn.html

https://www.avsforum.com/forum/92-com...n-theater.html
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post #352 of 443 Old 04-04-2017, 04:44 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rob Hahn View Post
I love it! 110 acres? Wow - you can just build a tunnel or an overpass to get to it!

I actually don't know the answer to that question. Maybe Keith will chime in (if he's lurking). Good luck on your build! Let me know in 15 years when it's done - I'll come & see it - we can compare notes!

-Rob

https://www.avsforum.com/forum/86-ult...-rob-hahn.html

https://www.avsforum.com/forum/92-com...n-theater.html
The next time we light up Rob's system with the UberSubs playing the subterranean rumbles during War of the Worlds, I'll go behind the racks and video-record the real-time metering readouts on the PDUs, which should tell us what the draw is -- current, voltage, kW, power factor etc. (Each of the 4 PDUs is 240V, 60A as I recall.) If I had to take a stab at it in advance of measuring, I might guess somewhere in the 8-10kW range, average, during the big dirt-rumble and building collapse scenes.

110 acres, eh? Lucky guy! I'm thinking a 100-ft long, somewhat curvy breezeway to link the house and entertainment complex ... the path would curve to reveal a few carefully chosen landmarks -- big trees, hills, rock outcroppings, pond or other interesting sights. When you get to the napkin-sketch phase someday, remember that the further you have to hike, the harderyou'll want to work to make the journey itself a positive, integral part of the cinematic experience.
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Take it from me: If Keith gives you architectural suggestions, listen closely!
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(Formerly "ReplayMike". These opinions are mine alone, and in no way reflect the opinions of employers past or present!)
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post #354 of 443 Old 05-23-2017, 07:28 AM
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Best $1M Theater of 2016?
(2010's for that matter...)

(I know- if you have to ask how much...)

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post #355 of 443 Old 06-12-2017, 06:02 PM
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@Rob Hahn Just out of curiosity, what levels are you able to obtain in that size room with the M2's and amps you went with? Are you able to hit theatrical reference? Also, any particular reason you didn't go with the I-techs? Do you think the I-techs would of given you additional output/headroom? I know your amps put out 300 watts into 8 ohms, the I-tech 5000 HD's is over 4 times more at 8 ohms.

Sorry if this has been asked, but I wasn't able to find it.

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post #356 of 443 Old 06-15-2017, 04:01 PM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by Blackdevil77 View Post
@Rob Hahn Just out of curiosity, what levels are you able to obtain in that size room with the M2's and amps you went with? Are you able to hit theatrical reference? Also, any particular reason you didn't go with the I-techs? Do you think the I-techs would of given you additional output/headroom? I know your amps put out 300 watts into 8 ohms, the I-tech 5000 HD's is over 4 times more at 8 ohms.

Sorry if this has been asked, but I wasn't able to find it.
Below, find Keith Yates' response... To preface his remarks, I'd like to add that I've never been that interested in the numbers my system could generate. It's hard to explain how the effect of a great soundtrack performs in my theater - It is extremely powerful, very rich, full and _balanced_ with virtually no listener fatigue and no harshness. It's so powerful that the sense of complete immersion is nothing like I've ever experienced. Even though it can get very very loud, you never feel assaulted after a film. On the contrary, you want to watch another movie! The construction of the room and the way it's tuned contribute mightily to this. There's simply no ringing in the theater at all, so the distortion is extremely low. And because the room is so quiet, the dynamic range is highly extended - the effect is delicate when called for, but also powerful, concentrated & extremely intense.

The UberSubs are essential & are key. They supply an enormous foundation such that you don't have to crank up the volume to access subsonic frequencies that would normally be lacking in most theater environments.

Here's Keith:

There are many criteria you can use when vetting speakers in a private theater/screening room. In Rob’s case, it came down to 3 main things:
#1. The physical relationship between the screen channels and audience head locations (call it “playback geometry”);
#2. How pristine we could make the perceived sound quality in the upper-midrange and lower treble, where Rob is especially sensitive; and
#3. How much undistorted output we needed at the money seats (middle of rows 2 and 3).

#1: The first factor is straightforward: You sort through test data to find speakers whose horizontal and vertical radiation patterns fit the 3D geometry in your room model and “light up” all seats in all rows equally. (You can’t equalize or otherwise fix a funky rad-pat.) The M2s fit the bill here beautifully (though not uniquely so).

#2: The M2s were uniquely suited to Rob’s project because they don't have the shout, honk or blare that almost all pro type speakers have at least a little of, nor do they have the sand-like texture problems that blight most high-end consumer speakers when you try to get them to fill up an appropriately treated room of this size.

#3: That leaves the last and probably most interesting factor in Rob’s case: max level. Here things got interesting. Normally when you’re watching a 19 foot wide picture, in a room of that size, there’s an urge to crank it way the heck up. My theory – and that’s all it is – is that when humans see an event – let’s say a heavy object crashing to the ground, a collision, a streetcar rumbling through an intersection a block away – the brain naturally expects a corresponding aural cue – a thud, rumble or whatever – including the infrasonic energy that accompanies those sounds in real life. Viewers with big sound systems naturally want to turn it up to the point where they can assuage the nagging sense that something (read the infrasonic range) is missing. What they’re doing is overdriving the system until they can feel a little something. If there’s no feeling, it’s gotta be fake. In Rob’s case we solved that problem directly (14 UberSubs and 8 JL subs), without needing to test the dB limits of the speakers.

We talked about iTech amps vs Levinsons early on, including the fact that 4 times as much power means exactly 6dB louder. (You need 10 times as much power to produce a 9-10 dB increase in SPL, which is perceived as a doubling of level.) For the M2s he chose to go with amplifiers whose design goals prioritized the things he’s most sensitive to. And he had all the brute force playback of the sub-20Hz range a guy could ask for(!), so it was an easy decision.

It was important to me that I deliver on what Rob said was his number one goal, right from our first meeting: “Keith, I want to be able to play 3 or 4 movies back to back, have dinner, and feel like I can’t wait to go back to the Theater and play 2 more before calling it a day. I want the sound to be very powerful but not in a way that will make my ears bleed.” I think Rob would agree that the combination of M2s, Levinsons and UberSubs helped make it happen, no need to turn it up even louder to make up for a missing low end, because we've got that covered in spades.

What anyone who's experienced Rob's room can say is, "The room and system produce a more ohmigawd, grippingly real, you-are-there, PHYSICALLY involving effect than any movie theater, IMAX included, they've ever been in, no matter how loud it was being played."

https://www.avsforum.com/forum/86-ult...-rob-hahn.html

https://www.avsforum.com/forum/92-com...n-theater.html
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post #357 of 443 Old 06-15-2017, 04:55 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rob Hahn View Post
Below, find Keith Yates' response... To preface his remarks, I'd like to add that I've never been that interested in the numbers my system could generate. It's hard to explain how the effect of a great soundtrack performs in my theater - It is extremely powerful, very rich, full and _balanced_ with virtually no listener fatigue and no harshness. It's so powerful that the sense of complete immersion is nothing like I've ever experienced. Even though it can get very very loud, you never feel assaulted after a film. On the contrary, you want to watch another movie! The construction of the room and the way it's tuned contribute mightily to this. There's simply no ringing in the theater at all, so the distortion is extremely low. And because the room is so quiet, the dynamic range is highly extended - the effect is delicate when called for, but also powerful, concentrated & extremely intense.

The UberSubs are essential & are key. They supply an enormous foundation such that you don't have to crank up the volume to access subsonic frequencies that would normally be lacking in most theater environments.

Here's Keith:

There are many criteria you can use when vetting speakers in a private theater/screening room. In Rob’s case, it came down to 3 main things:
#1. The physical relationship between the screen channels and audience head locations (call it “playback geometry”);
#2. How pristine we could make the perceived sound quality in the upper-midrange and lower treble, where Rob is especially sensitive; and
#3. How much undistorted output we needed at the money seats (middle of rows 2 and 3).

#1: The first factor is straightforward: You sort through test data to find speakers whose horizontal and vertical radiation patterns fit the 3D geometry in your room model and “light up” all seats in all rows equally. (You can’t equalize or otherwise fix a funky rad-pat.) The M2s fit the bill here beautifully (though not uniquely so).

#2: The M2s were uniquely suited to Rob’s project because they don't have the shout, honk or blare that almost all pro type speakers have at least a little of, nor do they have the sand-like texture problems that blight most high-end consumer speakers when you try to get them to fill up an appropriately treated room of this size.

#3: That leaves the last and probably most interesting factor in Rob’s case: max level. Here things got interesting. Normally when you’re watching a 19 foot wide picture, in a room of that size, there’s an urge to crank it way the heck up. My theory – and that’s all it is – is that when humans see an event – let’s say a heavy object crashing to the ground, a collision, a streetcar rumbling through an intersection a block away – the brain naturally expects a corresponding aural cue – a thud, rumble or whatever – including the infrasonic energy that accompanies those sounds in real life. Viewers with big sound systems naturally want to turn it up to the point where they can assuage the nagging sense that something (read the infrasonic range) is missing. What they’re doing is overdriving the system until they can feel a little something. If there’s no feeling, it’s gotta be fake. In Rob’s case we solved that problem directly (14 UberSubs and 8 JL subs), without needing to test the dB limits of the speakers.

We talked about iTech amps vs Levinsons early on, including the fact that 4 times as much power means exactly 6dB louder. (You need 10 times as much power to produce a 9-10 dB increase in SPL, which is perceived as a doubling of level.) For the M2s he chose to go with amplifiers whose design goals prioritized the things he’s most sensitive to. And he had all the brute force playback of the sub-20Hz range a guy could ask for(!), so it was an easy decision.

It was important to me that I deliver on what Rob said was his number one goal, right from our first meeting: “Keith, I want to be able to play 3 or 4 movies back to back, have dinner, and feel like I can’t wait to go back to the Theater and play 2 more before calling it a day. I want the sound to be very powerful but not in a way that will make my ears bleed.” I think Rob would agree that the combination of M2s, Levinsons and UberSubs helped make it happen, no need to turn it up even louder to make up for a missing low end, because we've got that covered in spades.

What anyone who's experienced Rob's room can say is, "The room and system produce a more ohmigawd, grippingly real, you-are-there, PHYSICALLY involving effect than any movie theater, IMAX included, they've ever been in, no matter how loud it was being played."

https://www.avsforum.com/forum/86-ult...-rob-hahn.html

https://www.avsforum.com/forum/92-com...n-theater.html
That is absolutely brilliant. Everything Keith Yates pointed out about the M2s is exactly why I went with them. They're not fatiguing, the coverage is great, they don't have that "sand like texture" or grit when pushed to appropriate levels, and don't have that typical PA sound signature.

It seems as though the Levinsons, while being about 6db down from the I-techs due to the power difference, still hit your SPL goals while although as you stated isn't really a number, but a feeling of total immersion and realism. If numbers had to be applied to that, I wonder what they would be.

And as far as the subs, that totally makes sense. I know you're not about the numbers, but would you say you have the subs/lower frequencies below the crossover running "hot" relative to the rest of the system to deliver that perceived "realism," despite a flat frequency response being considered "accurate" and "the way it was meant to be heard?" I can't imagine having all of that subwoofage and power that the system would be tuned to play completely flat, or even the theatrical tuning standard of 6db hot (information from film-tech forums). Does having all of those subs around the room with all of that power change the experience, even if they are calibrated to play at a similar level relative to the rest of the system as a smaller sub configuration would be, even in if the smaller configuration was still capable of the desired output?
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post #358 of 443 Old 06-15-2017, 09:35 PM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by Blackdevil77 View Post
That is absolutely brilliant. Everything Keith Yates pointed out about the M2s is exactly why I went with them. They're not fatiguing, the coverage is great, they don't have that "sand like texture" or grit when pushed to appropriate levels, and don't have that typical PA sound signature.

It seems as though the Levinsons, while being about 6db down from the I-techs due to the power difference, still hit your SPL goals while although as you stated isn't really a number, but a feeling of total immersion and realism. If numbers had to be applied to that, I wonder what they would be.

And as far as the subs, that totally makes sense. I know you're not about the numbers, but would you say you have the subs/lower frequencies below the crossover running "hot" relative to the rest of the system to deliver that perceived "realism," despite a flat frequency response being considered "accurate" and "the way it was meant to be heard?" I can't imagine having all of that subwoofage and power that the system would be tuned to play completely flat, or even the theatrical tuning standard of 6db hot (information from film-tech forums). Does having all of those subs around the room with all of that power change the experience, even if they are calibrated to play at a similar level relative to the rest of the system as a smaller sub configuration would be, even in if the smaller configuration was still capable of the desired output?
Keith can supply the exact computer equation he used to balance the UbderSubs and the rest of the system. I told him before we started the theater that I was (& am) a huge midbass fan and that I needed the room and speakers to be complimentary in that department. Keith said the trick would be to supply accuracy and to make sure that any midbass or infrasonic bass fullness wouldn’t muddy the midrange . Dialog intelligibility was of paramount importance so getting all these elements to work was a delicate balancing act.

All that said, as far as I know (Keith may correct me here) the subs aren’t being run hot. It’s just that the room is properly tuned, allowing the lower frequencies to disseminate properly (and equally) throughout the room which gives the desired ‘cushioned’ feeling.
And because there are so many UberSubs & subs (and because the room is designed so well), the sub drivers don’t have to work that hard, which contributes to the sense of low end ease and power.

-Rob

https://www.avsforum.com/forum/86-ult...-rob-hahn.html

https://www.avsforum.com/forum/92-com...n-theater.html
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post #359 of 443 Old 06-16-2017, 02:13 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rob Hahn View Post
Keith can supply the exact computer equation he used to balance the UbderSubs and the rest of the system. I told him before we started the theater that I was (& am) a huge midbass fan and that I needed the room and speakers to be complimentary in that department. Keith said the trick would be to supply accuracy and to make sure that any midbass or infrasonic bass fullness wouldn’t muddy the midrange . Dialog intelligibility was of paramount importance so getting all these elements to work was a delicate balancing act.

All that said, as far as I know (Keith may correct me here) the subs aren’t being run hot. It’s just that the room is properly tuned, allowing the lower frequencies to disseminate properly (and equally) throughout the room which gives the desired ‘cushioned’ feeling.
And because there are so many UberSubs & subs (and because the room is designed so well), the sub drivers don’t have to work that hard, which contributes to the sense of low end ease and power.

-Rob

https://www.avsforum.com/forum/86-ult...-rob-hahn.html

https://www.avsforum.com/forum/92-com...n-theater.html
Okay, that makes sense.

I really am in awe of everything. The synergy between the room and equipment is definitely greater than the sum of its parts. Your room inspired me to try and build a professionally designed theater in my house. I'd love to have be able to create something similar one day, where the room and equipment come together to create a single vessel that transports you into the movie. I don't think I'll ever come close to your theater, but a professionally designed room is certainly a good start I think.
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post #360 of 443 Old 06-16-2017, 08:49 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rob Hahn View Post
Keith can supply the exact computer equation he used to balance the UbderSubs and the rest of the system.

....It’s just that the room is properly tuned, allowing the lower frequencies to disseminate properly (and equally) throughout the room which gives the desired ‘cushioned’ feeling.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Blackdevil77 View Post
The synergy between the room and equipment is definitely greater than the sum of its parts.
After watching
which discusses the best placement for subwoofers, Keith mentions many times he uses Computational Fluid Dynamics software to model how pressure waves react in each custom theater environment. I'm sure there is some accounting for the difference in density between the fluid of air plus a whole heck of experience to inject a bit of art into the cold, calculating science of pure equations, but I thought the discussion was very interesting and made complete sense for why this approach was taken. The software allows modeling of an infinite number of pressure points (subs), making it easier to see expected response across all seats across all frequencies.

Here's a screen grab and short video showing the modeling in action:


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