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post #1 of 28 Old 07-21-2019, 12:52 PM - Thread Starter
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1st HT design! W/ 3d renders and floor plans - Would love feedback!

Hello folks! I'm looking for feedback on a HT design. I've dreamed for years about doing one and I now have a pending offer in on a home with a basement.

I prefer sitting closer to the screen and like the idea of an acoustically transparent screen but bumping it out far enough to put speakers behind it makes my already small room smaller.

Here are some digital sketches and 3D renders I made today...

Full room - Front section is 11'2" x 11' with a smaller area (due to a closet) that narrows down to 7'9".


Here's the same image zoomed in a bit to see measurements...


If I go with an acoustically transparent 120" screen here's what things look like from the 2nd row


And from the 1st row...


Last, if I do the acoustically transparent screen this images shows all the distances to viewing distances...


And a big temptation would be to use a 135" screen but that would take up nearly 100% of the wall and look like this...



So... Handful of things I'd love feedback on please...

- If i configure things this way above I do have chairs right next to walls and I wonder if that will be an issue and if I can just address it by hanging heavy fabric along all the walls?

- Will I be OK having my fronts and center up against the wall and behind a screen? I'd love to get them further from the wall but don't have much space to spare?

- Should I consider that huge 135" screen or stick to the 120"? If I go for the acoustically transparent screen and put it in front of my speaker then I'll be down to a 6"9" viewing distance from the front row... However when the seats are reclined I'll probably gain another 8" or so of viewing distance which gets me up to 7'6" viewing distance when reclined.

- With this room design where would you put your surrounds? I'm open to 5.1, 7.1 or could even mess with Atmos but I'm not to worried about that. With that closet that bumps out would you put a set of surrounds up for the front row and another set for the 2nd row? or maybe just in the ceiling in between the rows? I want to make sure the single chair in the front left still gets a good experience.

- Gear under consideration is the Optoma UHD60, a pair of Klipsch 8000F for fronts, a Klipsch center TBD and surrounds TBD. I do own a nice SVS Sub with two down firing 12s which would in theory go behind the screen.

Are there other bits of feedback you'd give me or questions you have?
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post #2 of 28 Old 07-21-2019, 01:15 PM
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I think you are going to be sitting WAY too close for even a 100" screen and from the looks of it, that's the least of your problems with that layout.

I've seen people do small rooms before, but with a love seat or two small chairs not 5 seats and that close to the wall with an L-Shape layout.

If you can remove that closet then you could have a much better layout.


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post #3 of 28 Old 07-21-2019, 01:37 PM
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I'm quietly hoping for your sake that the offer doesn't go through and you can get a better space. You could get in-wall speakers and put the screen just a couple of inches off the wall to increase the viewing distance.
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post #4 of 28 Old 07-21-2019, 01:42 PM
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I wonder about rebuilding the closet?
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post #5 of 28 Old 07-21-2019, 01:59 PM
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Where is the entry to this space anyways?

Could you rebuild the closet to a different layout and maybe use the upper portion for a hush box for the projector?

Why not in wall speakers?

Something like this, if possible with the closet, would be substantially better.
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post #6 of 28 Old 07-21-2019, 06:24 PM - Thread Starter
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I could look into moving that closet but I know there are 2 sump pumps in there and not sure what relocating those would look like...

I could give up on the 3 seat 1st row and do 2 rows of 2 seats, centered and away from walls... the walkway between the seat and the wall would be small... maybe 18"... not sure if that would be better?

As for viewing distance... I was in a HT demo room this weekend and felt that 8' was a pretty perfect distance for my taste on a 135" screen. So I don't think I'm crazy far off based on my preference. But I'm not sure 6ft would be good.... so may 120" might be my way forward on the screen.

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post #7 of 28 Old 07-21-2019, 06:25 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tedd View Post
Where is the entry to this space anyways?

Could you rebuild the closet to a different layout and maybe use the upper portion for a hush box for the projector?

Why not in wall speakers?

Something like this, if possible with the closet, would be substantially better.
Ted, on the question about the entrance.. as you look at my diagram the stairs come down in the lower left of that sketch...
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post #8 of 28 Old 07-21-2019, 07:15 PM
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1st HT design! W/ 3d renders and floor plans - Would love feedback!

Depending on where those pumps are (let’s hope bottom portion of the drawing) maybe you could just shift the closet down. Blend the new bottom into where the stairs come down. You’d gain about 4’ (if I read your measurements right), which I’d think would let you get a second row in.

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post #9 of 28 Old 07-22-2019, 03:56 AM
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So a sump pump closet it is. I was thinking a clothing closet.

Could you do a riser, that has access to the pumps?

I would take the width and center the seating, if I could keep the room wider. That layout would be much better audio-wise.
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post #10 of 28 Old 07-22-2019, 04:27 AM
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Not sure about how tall the space is, but if you built an extensive riser at step one height, with hatch for sump pump access as part of the riser, and then did an island style riser on top of the riser, you might be able to take the whole width and do two rows of three narrow compact seats. In wall speakers for surrounds, so they don't take up space.

The ejection lines would need to be rerouted.
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post #11 of 28 Old 07-22-2019, 04:28 AM
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Sump pumps can be moved, it is similar to relocating the plumbing for a bathroom in a concrete floor basement. You hammer out the concrete, install the revised plumbing then patch the concrete. If there are two in the closet there is a good chance one is an ejector pit for the waste water.
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post #12 of 28 Old 07-22-2019, 04:52 AM
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I do wonder as to the why's of that side wall being located where it is...

If there's no support post and there's room to take some width, then maybe something like this is an option to get you 4 seats??
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post #13 of 28 Old 07-22-2019, 08:03 AM
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Quote:
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Sump pumps can be moved, it is similar to relocating the plumbing for a bathroom in a concrete floor basement. You hammer out the concrete, install the revised plumbing then patch the concrete. If there are two in the closet there is a good chance one is an ejector pit for the waste water.
They can, but that would come at a considerable cost and could take the budget away from the HT build.
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post #14 of 28 Old 07-22-2019, 08:05 AM
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Can you post pictures of the space and pump closet? I think that will help determine if there are any viable options..
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post #15 of 28 Old 07-22-2019, 08:42 AM - Thread Starter
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Hey guys, thanks for all the feedback. I had not considered tearing into that closet. I had definitely not considered moving or building a riser over the sump pump.... These are awesome ideas and I'm glad I posted.

So next time I have access to the home (I have not closed on the property yet) I'll take pics in there and take a look at options.

My gut is that relocating the sump pump might be more than I want to get to... but building over it with an access panel could be an option.

There's also a water softener in there but not much else, so it might be very possible to use the closet space.

I'm curious for feedback on what in-ceiling speakers you guys like? I've not researched them much at all... also, how do you like to place them for a 2-row setup? Right above the listeners in between the rows? I'll need to see what my options are but may look at in-wall for surrounds on the side as well...

Last ask... on-screen distance, I know there are a ton of calculators out there, most of them recommend view distances greater than I prefer. I know I'm good w/ an 8ft view distance on a 135" screen. Do any of you use a ratio like that or am I going to end up hating that after watching a full movie? Thoughts? I guess the best play there is to just not buy a screen or build risers till I've tested the screen size on the wall and by moving the recliners around...
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post #16 of 28 Old 07-22-2019, 09:34 AM
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Why not buy a projector and test watching movies at certain distances/screen sizes. I think everyone is going to have their own preference so it would be best to find what yours is.

I have used Micca in ceiling/wall speakers and they are ok for what they are. Price wise they are fantastic, but they are not to be compared with a traditional speaker set.

I like the idea of the riser over the pumps.. That is a very economical way to not only hide them, but to get the seating that you desire.
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post #17 of 28 Old 07-23-2019, 06:52 PM
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You might be visually good with a big wide screen at a short distance, but there's also audio to consider. And are there AT screens that look great at 8'?

I like the idea of a large 16x9 AT screen and a single upper masking panel. I expect to lace in some AT fabric, and create the sides and bottom panel with velvet covered boards, secured from behind.
And then have a wider panel that slides up and down, to create the upper edge of the screen. Just an idea that came about when thinking about a small width challenged room. I like my hdtv shows and
some hockey games, but this is about something straight forward to do, and inexpensive to build.

Much of that first drawing in post 10, is about maybe doing some higher end "stuff" with minimal seating. You could build a substantial room with the projector and av rack hosted outside the room.
And you could drive the noise floor down low, and you really need nothing exotic then, in the way of speakers to play reference levels. So a room as such might not be substantial in seating, but it could
be more then then a lot of rooms have in audio capability. The rest of the exterior could be played up as an entry or small lobby.

My next screen size will be based on my next projector's capability. For now I am good with a 54x96" screen and one of the tougher things with a small space, is not lighting up the room, with light coming off
a screen. Ideally you don't want too big and does one even need a screen much wider then the width of the seating? There's a lot of balance that a really good room will have.

How tall is the room?

I do like RGB LED tape light in aluminum extrusions, as a way to safely light a riser edge. Then again, you might simply raise the whole floor since it isn't a large space.
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post #18 of 28 Old 07-24-2019, 12:41 PM - Thread Starter
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You might be visually good with a big wide screen at a short distance, but there's also audio to consider. And are there AT screens that look great at 8'?

Innnnteresting I hadn't even considered the impact of an AT screen on visuals. I've read that the woven look can be noticeable. I'm looking at a screen from Silver Ticket. Does anyone have any feedback on how close they can sit to that screen without noticing the woven texture?
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post #19 of 28 Old 07-24-2019, 12:43 PM - Thread Starter
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How tall is the room?
Low ceiling.. only 7' 6"
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post #20 of 28 Old 07-24-2019, 01:53 PM
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Low ceiling.. only 7' 6"
Ha.. That is 6" taller than mine...
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post #21 of 28 Old 07-24-2019, 02:12 PM
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Quote:
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Innnnteresting I hadn't even considered the impact of an AT screen on visuals. I've read that the woven look can be noticeable. I'm looking at a screen from Silver Ticket. Does anyone have any feedback on how close they can sit to that screen without noticing the woven texture?
I have some details on that exact subject in my build thread (McTheatre II Build Thread)... my first row is slightly under 7 feet eyeballs to screen.

I would not sit closer than 10-12' from the silver ticket WAB material.

Seymour UF might be a choice for closer distances - it tested well for me. Seymour also has Enlightor Neo in their upscale "screen excellence" brand - which is like UF but with even smaller/tighter weave. I did not get a sample of it since I figured it would too expensive for my tastes.

I am building a DIY spandex AT screen - milliskin matte white spandex over milliskin matte black. Many details about this approach are available in the DIY screen forum. I haven't installed the spandex onto my screen frame yet but frame construction details are in my build thread too.

If you want AT and inexpensive, spandex could be the ticket for you. Or a DIY frame and order a cut of DIY material from Seymour - they are happy to sell it so you can stretch it onto your own frame as you see fit..

All of these screen companies will send you a square foot or so of sample materials for you to test with at your own distances with your projector, if you have it on hand.

James

Long-time AVS reader, finally building a small dedicated room.
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post #22 of 28 Old 07-24-2019, 04:07 PM
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I wonder if there's anything buried in that side wall, and what's to the left of the room?

Would there be an opportunity, to take the room wider and host four or five seats wide, with a single row? That would remove second row sightlines issues, and the majority of seating located where audio won't be at least decent.
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post #23 of 28 Old 07-24-2019, 04:11 PM
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I'd also look at how low the sump pump cover could be. With it right behind the seating row, you could skip a riser and possibly just have a low box/cover behind the seating. That would be cheaper, and preserve all 7' 6" of room height.
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post #24 of 28 Old 07-24-2019, 08:21 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tedd View Post
Where is the entry to this space anyways?

Could you rebuild the closet to a different layout and maybe use the upper portion for a hush box for the projector?

Why not in wall speakers?

Something like this, if possible with the closet, would be substantially better.
Quote:
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I wonder if there's anything buried in that side wall, and what's to the left of the room?

Would there be an opportunity, to take the room wider and host four or five seats wide, with a single row? That would remove second row sightlines issues, and the majority of seating located where audio won't be at least decent.
to the left is the crawl space, it's only a 1/2 basement. Expanding would mean a major excavation project! Probably out of budget for now.
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post #25 of 28 Old 07-25-2019, 07:05 AM
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Trying to void any real major work, but I wasn't thinking of the basement as a side split.
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post #26 of 28 Old 07-25-2019, 07:45 AM
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There might be a substantial three seat room by moving one pit and leap frog behind the other pit. Which makes me ask how important are the extra two seats?


Then again, maybe the leap frog of one pit, back of the other, works with a 6" riser. The real question then is the water softener and how big it is, and where it might fit in.
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post #27 of 28 Old 07-25-2019, 07:51 AM - Thread Starter
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There might be a substantial three seat room by moving one pit and leap frog behind the other pit. Which makes me ask how important are the extra two seats?


Then again, maybe the leap frog of one pit, back of the other, works with a 6" riser. The real question then is the water softener and how big it is, and where it might fit in.

Yeah, still need to check things out but I'd be looking to move the softener to the garage and tap into the water lines by the water heater that's currently in the garage. Still need to get back on the property to assess all this but I think that would be a pretty manageable work...

Certainly more doable than moving a sump pump or digging out the crawl space..... so I'll just need to measure and see how much space I'll gain by demolishing the closet, relocating the softener and building over top of the sump pumps. but that's my working plan. just need to confirm it on site.
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post #28 of 28 Old 07-25-2019, 08:14 AM
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I wouldn't even entertain digging out the crawl space because it is load bearing and a significant amount of work and cost.

Cracking some concrete, putting in a new pit and do some plumbing, would be something I would consider. I have had my share of
reno projects where some work and some invested money planted well, make a huge difference. Then I go wo work to shave costs
elsewhere, to bring a project back to budget, or close to budget.
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