Media Room Layout and Pre-Wiring locations - AVS Forum | Home Theater Discussions And Reviews
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post #1 of 10 Old 06-17-2019, 09:47 AM - Thread Starter
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Media Room Layout and Pre-Wiring locations

We're building a new house and added the media room option to our layout. Using Pulte's furniture planner, I plugged in the two chairs and couch that will be going into the room. The room will be for movies/TV and video games. I am planning to do a 5.2.4 setup. I want to have the 5 ear height level speakers away from the wall. However, I think to preserve walking space and keep them from being too close to the couch, I will need to mount the surround speakers about 6ft high on the wall. I have the front speakers 3ft from the wall with 32" standard doorway's walking space between the line of speakers and the chairs. I want to build a bar for the back with a mini-fridge and toaster/microwave for drinks and snacks. That gives me a tight fit for the chairs to couch and couch to bar. I could shift the seating and speakers all forward, but then the chairs are too far forward from the door location. Overall, how did I do? What changes would you make/recommend if this was your media room? The ceiling speakers on the right side will mirror the left, I just didn't add the dimensions for those.
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post #2 of 10 Old 06-18-2019, 05:37 AM - Thread Starter
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I'm moving the post to the General HT and Media subforum. I thought that was for using living spaces for media, but I see it includes dedicated media rooms, and this is more a construction thread. Hopefully I will get a response there since our meeting with the low voltage installers is today.
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post #3 of 10 Old 06-18-2019, 06:31 AM
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I would have commented on the diagram but after looking at it a couple of minutes I didn't understand what you are trying to accomplish so I moved on. There is no indication of the video side of the design nor why the front speakers are 3 ft in front of the front wall. Is this room more for two channel listening?
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post #4 of 10 Old 06-18-2019, 08:12 AM
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Are the 2 seats in the front row supposed to be different sizes or is that an error in the drawing? Is the main listening position really a spot in the middle of the room where no one is sitting? Why are the front speakers so far out into the room? What are the room dimensions?

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post #5 of 10 Old 06-18-2019, 08:39 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BIGmouthinDC View Post
I would have commented on the diagram but after looking at it a couple of minutes I didn't understand what you are trying to accomplish so I moved on. There is no indication of the video side of the design nor why the front speakers are 3 ft in front of the front wall. Is this room more for two channel listening?
The video side is on the left where the seating faces. If it was up to me, I probably would have it the other way, but that's where the smurf tube with the cat 6 and cable will be located according to the builder's diagram. The front speakers are pulled out 3ft from the wall to provide more optimal placement away from walls. The 3ft from the front wall is where the front of the speakers will be located. My main questions are where to place the surround speakers and if the Atmos are in a good location. It's looking like I will have to mount the surround speakers on the side walls. How far back should they be mounted?


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Originally Posted by sdurani View Post
Are the 2 seats in the front row supposed to be different sizes or is that an error in the drawing? Is the main listening position really a spot in the middle of the room where no one is sitting? Why are the front speakers so far out into the room? What are the room dimensions?
The two chairs are slightly different size. I'm using our older living room furniture that's been moved into a multipurpose room in our current house. I decided to place the main listening position in the center for calculating the location of the atmos speakers from which to calculate 45 degrees front and back based on 8ft ceilings and 38in ear level. Front speakers are farther out for better placement and because the front row cannot move forward any more due to the location of the doorway. The overall room dimensions are 17'11" x 11'11."

Thanks for the replies. Hopefully these clarifications help you understand my diagram. Sometimes I can create diagrams that make sense to me but are not always easy for someone else to understand. For example, some measurements between different furniture are there for me to know how much room there is for a walkway. One thing that may be confusing from posting in the wrong subforum is that instead of a projector, I plan to purchase a 65" OLED and mount it on an articulating arm so it can be pulled out just above the speakers.
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post #6 of 10 Old 06-18-2019, 09:13 AM
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I would place the L/C/R speakers at the front wall, with broadband absorption panels between them to minimize boundary cancellations and maximize articulation in the front soundstage. Consider doing 7.1 in the base layer, with Side speakers between the rows and Rear speakers spread apart on the back wall. Will give you wrap-around envelopment and side-vs-rear separation in the surround field that you won't get with only 2 surrounds. Which is the more important row, front or back?

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post #7 of 10 Old 06-18-2019, 09:24 AM
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Are you doing a projection system or TV? Are you doing a riser for the back row? Place your side speakers closer to the middle of the two rows and two more speakers along the back wall. Move the front speakers closer to the wall as 2' 8" is too close for movie watching. How are you soundproofing your room? If not, now is the time to do so as you will appreciate it once it's all finished and you want to spend some time in there and no bother anyone else.
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post #8 of 10 Old 06-19-2019, 07:16 AM - Thread Starter
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Thanks everyone for the comments and suggestions. The representative from the low voltage supplier was an extremely non-technical sales person. The standard it comes with is pre-wiring for a "7.1" system. I use the quotes because it's wiring for wall speakers up front and 4 ceiling for the surrounds. I tried explaining what I wanted to do with an atmos system and that since I use passive subwoofers with an external amplifier if I could have the sub wiring be regular speaker wire. She couldn't do that because the builder pays for 7 speaker runs and one RG-6. She was completely confused regarding what I was asking for and didn't know much beyond her script about wiring cat 6 cable to where you will mount TVs. I was able to define where each speaker wire location went. I defined the 4 in the ceiling for my atmos placement based on distance from the front and side walls and moved the front L/R to the side walls 4.5' from the back wall at 6ft high to be my surround speakers. This will place them at 90 degrees to the head of someone on the couch and a bit behind the front compared to recommended use but the best I could do. I moved the center to the back corner for my passive sub. Once I build my second sub, it will go up front in the opposite corner.

I know several people suggested a 7.2.4. However, with my speaker building plans, recent upgrade to a 9 channel receiver based on a planned 5.2.4 in our current home, and desire to have 4 instead of 2 ceiling speakers I will keep to a 5.2.4 setup. Upgrading to 7 speakers down just will not happen for at least several years even if I wanted it now based on those factors alone. As for the front speakers, I probably will pull them back a little. I used a standard 36" doorway as the walking distance between the speakers and front chairs. However, a 4'8" distance from head to speakers is a bit short. I'll probably pull them back another 6." With 2' from the side wall placement, I don't want to have even distances from two walls.
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post #9 of 10 Old 06-19-2019, 07:23 AM
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Just a data point, I've worked on several projects where new home buyers literally demoed builder spec home theaters down to the studs and started over so they could incorporate proper sound isolation construction methods and wiring requirements. Of course after they take occupancy. Less of an uphill battle and avoid excessive add-on fees the builders charge.
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Last edited by BIGmouthinDC; 06-19-2019 at 07:26 AM.
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post #10 of 10 Old 07-16-2019, 05:16 PM - Thread Starter
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After making additional requests and stating that I would add another pair of speaker wires, the builder has agreed to move the TV wall to the opposite side of the room! I have a quick turnaround to create a 7.2.4 layout in the room. Ceiling speakers are at 28" making them just 4" to the outside of the second stud, which will work well for my DIY speakers. Don't worry, I plan to use isolating silicone washers when mounting them to the side of the stud, flush with the ceiling.

As far as the surround speakers, how do you like the position of the side and rear speakers? The side speakers will have to go on the walls about 6ft high. When I design speakers for there, I will likely design tweeter down. For the rear speakers, I could go on wall or pulled away on stands next to the bar. On wall is usually not as good for sound. However, designing them for on wall would allow for using the same design as the side speakers. What would you do? On wall at 6ft like the sides, or lower on stands and 18" from the wall to match the front speakers?

Thank you for all the assistance so far. I'm excited to move the TV and get the design finalized.

Edit: A little more information. The media room will mostly be mostly used just by my wife and I until our boys (3, 3, and 2) are old enough for family movie nights. We won't have the bar until I build it. Before I build the bar, I will have to build drawers for the kitchen cabinets. I may want to build the rest of my speakers first too.

As for my two options with the rear speakers, I am leaning toward stand mounted. Once I build new front speakers, I can move my Continuums (one of Jeff Bagby's designs) to rear duty on their current stands. The front speakers will be floorstanders.
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