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post #1 of 15 Old 02-08-2018, 03:39 AM - Thread Starter
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Small HT room project starting this year !

Hi everyone!

I am starting this thread of my first own home theater room project. I am building a new house with no basement and no real attic (just a small space with maximum height of around 150 cm = 5 ft and around 7 square meters of surface – maybe a place for some network devices), so I needed to fit the HT somewhere on the ground floor.
As I have written in the other thread ( I cant post links or images yet - you can find it through my account posts ) I had some problems in with choosing the right place for HT (small separate room vs living room), and I thought the separate room will do much better than the open living room (mostly due to infamous “wife acceptance factor”).

As for budget – I am living in slightly different reality than most of you (despite Poland being member of European Union). As an experienced internal medicine and cardiology specialist with some rare set of medical skills in this field I can get around $20k per year in Poland. For the same job my colleagues in US get 25 times more (so I need to work 2 years for what they work for in a month). Unfortunately AV stuff is not cheaper in my country – sometimes even much more expensive. I asked one of the companies preparing HT rooms for the cost evaluation of such a project, and such installations start from $60k (that’s my 3-year income). That’s why I decided to do that on my own…

The room is rectangular (W x L x H - 305 x 468 x 276 cm = around 10 x 15.6 x 9 ft) with corner window (I will attach pictures as soon as possible). The walls are made of brick (that’s the current state of the room – bricks with no plaster yet). I am planning to install a projector, a 110” screen on a shorter wall, at least 5.1.2 dolby atmos system (7.1.4 if possible).

Planned equipment:
- SONY VLP HW45ES projector
- 110” (optimal electric tensioned screen hidden in a drywall ceiling)
- Speakers: thinking of Dali Zensor 5.0 system (zensor 7/1/vocal) and adding Dali subwoofer E12F and 2 back speakers in the future. Alternatively Klipsch 5.0 system with RP280F + RP-450C + RP-250S the subwoofer in the future but it’s much more expensive (around 80% more than Dali).
- Some ceiling speakers – for now I will prewire for the atmos but not going to install the speakers probably.
- Amplifier – thinking about some options: Onkyo RZ810/820/920 ($1000 vs $1100 vs n/a yet in Poland) vs Denon 3400/4400 ($1000 vs $1500). Counting on some advice from you…

Things I already have:
- XBOX One S
- NAS Server Synology J216+ with 4 TB WD Red disk (planning an upgrade)
- NETGEAR R6400 wifi router
- a sofa :-)

ACOUSTIC TREATMENT – probably bass traps in the corner and maybe between ceiling and the rear wall + absorbers on the first reflection points. I won’t be able to put any diffusor on the back wall as I have the door on that wall and planning to put an AV rack on that wall. If I can afford it (doubtly) I may ask for an acoustic diagnostics from a proffesionals.

(PRE)WIRING:
The room is placed on the ground floor (named GABINET in the attached picture) between the living room (behind right wall when looking at the screen) and some additional room behind the left wall (storage room with stove). I am planning to place a screen on the shorter distal wall, in the middle of the room there will be a sofa for 3 persons (the viewing distance will be approximately 2.5-3.0 meters = 8-10 ft). There is a ventilation tract in the rear left corner of the room – next to it (on the back wall) I am planning to place an AV rack (in form of probably some wooden bookshelf – maybe it will work as some poor diffusor at the same time).
I am planning to run speaker wires from AV Rack to all the speakers (inwall wires placed in a plastic pipe, so I can change them some day) plus to a living room (behind the right side wall there will be a TV in the living room + probably stereo speakers which will be my second zone for the amplifier. In the living room the amplifier will be accessed via wifi (android app). I will run an HDMI 2.2 cable from AV rack to projector screen (the projector might be placed on the top of the AV rack – I am not sure yet – then, I may not need to put an HDMI cable in wall). The other HDMI cable will run in wall through the right side wall to the TV in the living room.

I would like to use the same devices in the HT room and in the living room:
- amplifier will be connected with TV and stereo speakers as a second zone as mentioned before,
- not sure how to access the Xbox – bluetooth won’t work directly, maybe some BT extender?)
- NAS Server will be accessed through Plex application on the Xbox – not sure how to connect these to (wifi connection might be a problem)

NETWORK:
I will probably have 80 Mbit/s internet connection (ADSL unfortunately, 80 DL / 5 UL). The cable modem will probably be in the storage room, it will be connected to 1 Gbit switch, then CAT6 in wall cables to other rooms on both floors, to the wifi router Netgear R6400 (somewhere in the middle of the ground floor) and to the access point on the upper floor.

THE ROOM:
There will probably be a wooden floor (have seen some lecture of Bobby Owsinski who did not recommend putting a rug) – I will put a small movable rug between the screen and the sofa in first reflection points if necessary, though… I will try to paint it all dark (not black, but maybe dark grey), not sure if wife accepts the dark ceiling though… :-/ I will try to build a drywall ceiling so I can install atmos speakers and ceiling absorbers (hope I will be able to level the absorbers with the drywall ceiling, even at the cost of absorbers thickness).
Insulation – there will be none (no additional I mean). Too much work, too high cost, too poor predictable effect. Maybe will do some door and windows insulation in the future, but no “huge-rockwool-8-inch-thick-insulation”.

I will add a pictures of the room and the more detailed plan of the room in the next few days. I am open for suggestions :-)
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post #2 of 15 Old 02-08-2018, 09:09 AM
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For smoothest frequency response (fewer/smaller peaks & dips), I would start by placing the listeners' ears (NOT the back of the sofa) about 1/3rd room length from the back wall. For a 5.1 set-up, the surrounds can go on the side walls, slightly rearward of the listeners (around 110 degrees from centre). However, since your seating will be away from the back wall, you are an ideal candidate for a 7.1 set-up because you will get excellent side-vs-rear separation in the surround field. For a 7.1 set-up, place the sides on the side wall, slightly forward of the listeners (around 75-80 degrees from centre) and place the rears on the back wall, spread as wide apart as symmetrically possible. If you are going to eventually go with a 7.1.4 set-up, look for a receiver that can process 11 channels (like the Denon 4400).

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post #3 of 15 Old 02-08-2018, 11:54 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sdurani View Post
1. For smoothest frequency response (fewer/smaller peaks & dips), I would start by placing the listeners' ears (NOT the back of the sofa) about 1/3rd room length from the back wall.
2. For a 5.1 set-up, the surrounds can go on the side walls, slightly rearward of the listeners (around 110 degrees from centre). However, since your seating will be away from the back wall, you are an ideal candidate for a 7.1 set-up because you will get excellent side-vs-rear separation in the surround field. For a 7.1 set-up, place the sides on the side wall, slightly forward of the listeners (around 75-80 degrees from centre) and place the rears on the back wall, spread as wide apart as symmetrically possible.
3. If you are going to eventually go with a 7.1.4 set-up, look for a receiver that can process 11 channels (like the Denon 4400).
1. 1/3rd of length is around 150 cm. The ventilation tract is 50 cm thick, theres about 100 cm left (~3 ft). I think it can be done...
2. I would love to have 7.1 surround, but where to place the rear surround speakers? On the rear left there is this damn ventilation tract, on the right there's a door (I could theoretically place the right rear speaker above the entrance but it would be over 2 meters high (probably over 7 ft). Does it make any sense?
3. I would like to get this Denon 4400, but I am not sure if I can afford it...
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post #4 of 15 Old 02-08-2018, 12:04 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by maro18 View Post
I would love to have 7.1 surround, but where to place the rear surround speakers? On the rear left there is this damn ventilation tract, on the right there's a door (I could theoretically place the right rear speaker above the entrance but it would be over 2 meters high (probably over 7 ft). Does it make any sense?
Placing surrounds high up defeats the purpose of Atmos (separating sounds around you from sounds above you). For rear speaker placement, spread them as wide apart as symmetrically possible (which might not be very wide, but you have to work with what you have).
Quote:
I would like to get this Denon 4400, but I am not sure if I can afford it...
In that case get the 3400 and do a 5.1.2 set-up. Surrounds can be placed as described in my previous post, heights can be placed in/on the ceiling a couple feet forward of the main listening position.

Sanjay
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post #5 of 15 Old 02-08-2018, 06:41 PM
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@maro18 My HT room is 10x15x9 and I’m in the process of remodeling the room for soundproofing etc. and have been reconsidering the layout. The door enters near the corner along the short wall like your room. Previously I had placed the screen on the long wall adjacent to the door allowing for one row of seating up against the other long wall. As I have a family of 4 I found this to be social and comfortable as the room did not feel narrow, we could all sit together, and the viewing distance of 8.5’ was perfect.

I’m presently considering whether placing the screen on the short wall makes sense; it would be better acoustically for the MLP and allow for 7.1.4 instead of 5.1.4 but with 9’ width (before double drywall etc) it’s barely possible to have a row of three in front and row of two against the rear wall next to the door. However I have mostly dismissed this layout as the room will feel very narrow and squeezed plus the kids won’t want to sit in the rear and we'd prefer them to sit "with us" too.

Summary is consider if in a few years you’ll have kids that will be enjoying the theater with you as to how you’d like the room layout.

Last edited by jjcook; 02-08-2018 at 07:38 PM.
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post #6 of 15 Old 02-09-2018, 05:02 AM - Thread Starter
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@maro18 My HT room is 10x15x9 and I’m in the process of remodeling the room for soundproofing etc. and have been reconsidering the layout. The door enters near the corner along the short wall like your room. Previously I had placed the screen on the long wall adjacent to the door allowing for one row of seating up against the other long wall. As I have a family of 4 I found this to be social and comfortable as the room did not feel narrow, we could all sit together, and the viewing distance of 8.5’ was perfect.

I’m presently considering whether placing the screen on the short wall makes sense; it would be better acoustically for the MLP and allow for 7.1.4 instead of 5.1.4 but with 9’ width (before double drywall etc) it’s barely possible to have a row of three in front and row of two against the rear wall next to the door. However I have mostly dismissed this layout as the room will feel very narrow and squeezed plus the kids won’t want to sit in the rear and we'd prefer them to sit "with us" too.

Summary is consider if in a few years you’ll have kids that will be enjoying the theater with you as to how you’d like the room layout.
Thank you Jeff for your post. I also was thinking about putting a screen on the longer wall, but the throw distance would be around 250 cm given that the length of projector is 46 cm (probably around 230 cm), That would give 76" screen with max zoom. There might be an option to put a projector in the storage room, drill a hole in the wall and increase the screen size up to 105". What size of screen do you have? Do you have any pictures of your project? What kind of acoustic treatment are you planning to install? Turning the whole project 90 degrees solves my main problem with the screen covering the window (the cost of electric tensioned 100" screen hidden in the drywall ceiling equals the cost of the projector).

As for surround system - where to put the left surround speaker? I have a window on the left side (as looking at the screen being placed on the wall between HT room and living room)...

- Marek
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post #7 of 15 Old 02-09-2018, 04:40 PM
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I "solved" the short throw issue induced by projecting onto the long wall by using a first surface mirror. I was unable to put the projector on the other side of either long wall as one is exterior wall and the other is the guest bath.

I used Triad Gold Omni SE in-wall speakers behind the screen to save space and InCeiling Silver Dipole Surrounds for the surround channels. I didn't have any acoustic treatments, etc.

My prior screen was a 100"-wide 2.35:1 screen. The white projector could fill the 16:9 portion of the screen and the black projector reflected off the mirror to use zoom method to fill the width of the 100"-wide screen. At my old 8.5' viewing distance (2.4x image height to viewing distance ratio) I was unhappy with the 16:9 image size but 2.35:1 was ok but I wanted more, so my plan was to move to 2.0x image height (122" x 51") for scope and most 16:9 content. I was actually going to use a 2.0-aspect screen so 122x61 so I could further increase size for "IMAX" 16:9 content at 1.7x image height.

My new build (remodel of this room) will be soundproofing with clips/channel/double drywall/green glue and a full set of acoustic treatments (not yet decided). My new working plan reduces my room width by ~1ft with a baffle wall to support deeper speakers and allow the left and right channels to be toe'd in. So my viewing distance is now ~7.5' but I'll keep the target for 2.0x for scope content but shrink the size.

I do need to create a build thread soon...
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post #8 of 15 Old 02-11-2018, 01:22 PM
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Originally Posted by jjcook View Post
I "solved" the short throw issue induced by projecting onto the long wall by using a first surface mirror...

I do need to create a build thread soon...
Nice way of getting additional throw distance, Jeff! I didn't realize that your avatar was showing this setup until now. Cool idea! And yes, you need to start a build thread soon. Would love to see how you go about soundproofing and upgrading your small room

@maro18 you've come to the right place for advice and people to bounce ideas off of!

One area where you can really save some money (if you aren't afraid of some woodworking) is DIY speaker building! There are plenty of kits online. A lot of people on AVS seem to be very happy with the kits from www.diysoundgroup.com or you could check out some of Troels Gravensen's designs. I just finished building his Nomex-164 (mkI not mkII) and the sound is better than most speakers I have heard costing three-four times as much. If you don't fancy going head first into speaker building, then you could maybe consider just doing a DIY-sub - it is very easy and you will get a lot of value for money.

Another thing, which might be further down the line, is trying to get a hold on a projector (if possible) and project the image size onto the wall and see what screen size is best for your viewing distance. I found that I was comfortable with a much shorter viewing distance than I originally thought. Instead of being too close I felt I was more immersed in the movie and the overall experience got better. This meant that I opted for a larger screen, which I am very happy for now!

These were just a couple of quick ideas. Looking forward to seeing how your build progresses. Best of luck with your first theater!

My Small Home Theater Build
JVC RS400 / 110" 2.40:1 Curved DIY AT Screen w. Masking / Prismasonic A-Lens / Marantz SR7011 / Emotiva XPA-5 / Behringer EP4000 / Oppo UDP-203 / PS4 Pro / Apple TV 4K / 7.2.2 Surround / DIY LCR's / 4xFI IB3 15" IB Sub
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post #9 of 15 Old 02-27-2018, 01:43 AM - Thread Starter
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I am reading , reading, reading… and there’s no end to it! When I solve one problem, two new arise… But getting to the point: I am posting a picture of the room. The center picture is a plan (a view on the floor). There are also views of four walls touching the plan with the floor (so the lower wall I drawn upside down). The walls will probably be painted dark grey (I would like to paint them matt black, but wife probably won’t accept it…). That green thing is my couch  All measurements on the plan are in centimeters (except for the viewing distance).
There are a few things I would like to discuss with you:
1. As you can see the projector is placed in the separate room to increase the throwing distance (up to 10’ 7” ). There is a wall in this separate room so the projector will be a little off the center of the screen – I will need to use a horizontal lens ****. That means I will not be able to use all of the vertical lens ****. Hence I need to install the projector (and drill that hole in the wall) in the middle of the screen. When I am sitting on the couch, my eyes are about 3’ 6” from the floor. As far as I know, that should be the point of the 1/3 lower screen. It means that the middle of the screen (100”) will be around 4’ 10”. Is that correct or I am thinking wrong? The viewing distance will be aprox 9’.
2. How large should be the hole?? The wall is made of airbricks which are 15 cm thick (aprox 6”) plus plaster on both sides – that would be 1” more. The hole should be large enough to put a hand inside and be able to operate lens shift. Any ideas? :-)
3. How do you think I should install a projector in the separate room? I thought of some kind of wall cupboard. I planned to hang it in the separate room, take off the back wall of the cupboard. I have some concerns over ventilation of the cupboard – I don’t want to leave it open, because I’m afraid of the cold air coming to my HT room through that hole in the wall (that separate room will be colder than the other rooms as it’d be connected with the garage). Another thought is installing small sliding door in the wall so I could cover that hole whenever I’m not using the projector. Would like to read your comments on this one…
4. Another thing – as wall-wall distance is only 10 ft, I need to place the couch by the rear wall. That means I will have problems with installing the surround speakers system… On the attached picture I have shown only 2 rear speakers on the sides of the couch and 2 atmos ceiling speakers above. Is there any possibility to improve that arrangement?
Waiting for your comments !

- Marek
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post #10 of 15 Old 02-27-2018, 06:28 AM
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Would it be possible to put in a steel header, and relocate the door to the room? and di an acoustically transparent screen?

It's not so different from what I did with my basement. (If I didn't already have my speakers, I would have
simply taken the extra length and done a partial baffle wall, using some good in wall speakers.)
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post #11 of 15 Old 02-27-2018, 06:58 AM
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https://www.avsforum.com/forum/92-com...r-hobbits.html might also be of interest to you.
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post #12 of 15 Old 02-27-2018, 12:22 PM - Thread Starter
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Unfortunately there is no chance that my wife lets me move the entrance :-)) Maybe if ot was basement.... But placing the door on the main wall in the living room is unacceptable.

I have seen the hobbits HT . Very nice project...
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post #13 of 15 Old 03-02-2018, 05:21 AM - Thread Starter
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A little update:
I went for a presentation of Sony VPL HW65ES projector yesterday. It was installed in a rather small adapted HT showroom with black walls and some basic acoustic treatment: http://rzutniki.com/news/n/108/Umow-sie-na-prezentacje (there are some pictures in the link). Some conclusions:
1. the projector gives an incredible picture. I am watching movies on Panasonic ST60 plasma TV and that picture of Sony does seem to be as good (including blacks) as my TV.

2. I thought that watching 100" picture from 9' distance might be to close, but... it is not. Actually I thought that I may sit much closer to the screen (around 6') for comfortable viewing. Hence, I can move the couch from the back wall and install the back surround speakers for 7.1.2 system :-))

3. I will built some sort of shelf for the projector (hole in the back wall and a box made of drywall protruding to the other room - there will be the access only from HT room. Fortunately the projector fans are face to the front, so there will be no problem with ventilation (by the way - there's a lot of heat coming from this projector, but it is REALLY quiet! I was sitting with my head next to it and could hear it while watching a movie with the volume turned down)

4. Still thinking about the speakers plus amplifier plus screen vs the budget...
a) if my new house turns out to be reasonably cheap and I will get some good money for the old house, I will buy probably the Denon X4400H + Dali zensor 5 or 7 (5.1 system). Was thinking about Dali Rubicon LCR (I was considering buying 3 front speakers and add some surrounds in the future) - have anyone seen these speakers? Are they worth the money spent on them?
b) in the showroom mentioned above there was a silver screen (dont remember the name or the company) which works more less the same as Magic Screen should work. There is a substantial difference in the ambient light enviroment, but when all lights were turned off, the difference was insignificant compared to standard white screen. Moreover, as the screen is silver, so is the white color (better darks, worse whites). So I think I will get some standard Adeo screen (100-105" fixed screen with dark velvet frame).
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post #14 of 15 Old 10-24-2018, 10:27 AM - Thread Starter
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Hi everyone. Long time no... read :-)

The house is being build, so is the HT room. We are working on the wiring of the buidling. Here are some updates:

1. I've decided to put the PJ by the door, and the screen on the oposite short wall.
2. The PJ is already purchased and it consumed almost all of my funds for the whole HT :-))) I was wondering if I should buy Sony HW45ES or HW65ES, was taking into consoderation Epson TW7300 or TW9300 and finished with... JVC RS540 :-)
3. the screen will be Elite Screen Sakar Tension 110" with 24" black top and black cassette (larger screens have to long cassettes which wont fit in my room)
4. the audio - I'm going into 5.2.4 (maybe start with 3.0 - it depends on the available funds)
5. the Audio's core will be Klipsch - probably 2 x RP260F + RP404C + 2 x RP420S + 2 x R120SW + some 4 ceiling speakers
6. the amplifier will be Onkyo RZ830 (unless some convinces me to choose something else)
7. The room will be painted black (Tikurilla black matt - recommended on Polish forums)
8. Acoustic treatment - will think about it as the last element of my room

That's all for now - will be in touch. Hope to finish the room around spring 2019


EDIT:
I have one problem not yet solved. According to the information I found the height of the screen surface should be so the eyes of the viewer are at the same level as lower third part of the screen. At the same time, the central channel speaker should be at ears level. How did you (the ones who have no AT screen) solve this problem? Is it better to raise a screen surface a little bit or to leave it as it is, but change the angle of central channel speaker sound waves by lifting up the front by an inch or so?

Last edited by maro18; 10-24-2018 at 01:32 PM.
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post #15 of 15 Old 09-19-2019, 04:10 AM - Thread Starter
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Another update:
the room is prewired, I just bought SVS 7.1.4 system:
2 SVS Ultra Bookshelf speakers as LF and RF, Ultra Center as... Center :-), Ultra surrounds (bi/dipole) as sides, prime satellites as rear and decided to get 4 Prime Elevation Speakers as atmos speakers. At this time there will be only 1 sub - PC4000. Will think of going dual in the future.
I also bought a 117" electrical tensioned screen.
Why Ultra bookshelf not the towers? The decision was not easy, but as I do not have much room for the large towers, and highs and mids in the Ultra Bookshelf are excelent in this price range, that was hopefully a good decision over Prime Towers or Ultra Towers. And Bookshelf speakers have much higher WAF than the towers :-)
I was planning to paint the whole room with Tikkurila black mat 9005 paint, but am thinking of dark grey now.
As for acoustic treatment will start with first reflection points absorbers and than extend it to some more treatment if needed.

Will post some screens when the room is ready.
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