Vintage ES Theater 7.4.4 - AVS Forum | Home Theater Discussions And Reviews
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post #1 of 28 Old 03-09-2020, 10:53 AM - Thread Starter
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Vintage ES Theater 7.4.4

Finally I took some pictures of my small theater I've been enjoying since 2017. This year I did a little upgrade and I think it's safe to say I'm good for a while.

Pretty much everything you see is inhouse design. No commercial products except for the gear of course. Average age of the gear is roughly 20 years so I think most if it qualifies as vintage.

However, I had significant help from @Roger Dressler , who I accidentally met online back in 2008. Since then he's been very generous by sharing his knowledge and because of him I was starting to realize the scope and grandeur of advanced home cinema systems. There were also many others whose experiences helped me perfect this room.

Besides good home theater experience I wanted great stereo sound as well. This was achieved only recently by adding fourth sub and spending many hours setting all the sub filters. Despite learning a lot in this process it was still quite a challenge. I went for the Harman curve becasue flat response sounded boring. Turned out slightly elevated low end was my preference all along. I just didn't do any measurements in my previous setups. I was lucky!

This is my fist dedicated room so there was a lot of testing and experimenting. What I'do differently? Bigger room!






















Last edited by gerchy; 03-09-2020 at 11:16 AM. Reason: more pics!
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post #2 of 28 Old 03-09-2020, 10:54 AM - Thread Starter
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Construction details:



Power wiring. Plenty of power sockets came handy when trying different gear positions.




Hoses for cables. 5 cm diameter is way too small!






Floor insulation.




Drywall. Right side of the ceiling slanted for a better symetry. Knauf anti-vibration construction was used.




Atmos wiring. Caught the last train as drywall was finishing in 2014.





The rack back door open in another room.




Three separate power line cables: Furutech FP314AG, Lapp Ölflex Classic CY110 and a cheap copper wire. Did this for comparison reasons but never conducted the test. LED ambiental lighting has battery power supply to minimize potential inteferences.




First music waves coming from surround speakers.




Rear end of the room is an office with HTPC. Slanted closets for better acoustics. Not sure if they're helpful but they look cool.




Testing more amps in mono mode. No need for that as one amp is obviously strong enough. Plus, mono circuits doesn't sound as good.




Gear ready and headed to the rack.




DIY cables. Girl labour!




Old tuner transformed to ventilation/control unit and placed above primary power amp. Some shelves have little fans to cool down amps and AVR.
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Last edited by gerchy; 03-09-2020 at 11:05 AM. Reason: typo correction
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post #3 of 28 Old 03-09-2020, 10:55 AM - Thread Starter
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Acoustic treatment:



Ceiling treatment. DIY BASF basotect 4".




DIY Arquen diffusers for covering rear wall.




I bought wood for making PRD difusers but later decided for styropor (styrodur). Much easier to work with. And cheaper too.




Glasswool on the test. Unfortunately it didn't work on usual places.




Testing a foam used in car industry. Not effective as I thought. On the bright side, room had new car smell for a short period of time.




Rockwool wrapped in gardening cloth and ready to use. Turned out the best place is between speakers and not in corners.




Covering a window behind screen with rockwool blocks.




DIY PRD diffusers. This was really time consuming but cheap! Only $15 per piece. At this point I didn't know styropor manufacturer offers CNC cutting. What a revelation! More on that later.






Time for covering side walls. This will be a hybrid absorber/diffuser.




Painting and sorting.




Glasswool covered with two layers of cloth.




Heavy lifting time. Diffusers waiting for montage.




Enveloping is now great even that side surrounds are pretty close. Probably KEF's Uni-Q drivers are helping as well. However, this didn't help much for 2-channel low end.




Fake rack on the opposite side for better symmetry.




Two Helmholtz resonators (each 60 L). They lowered peak by 2d at 45 Hz (room mode) but caused ringing in the time domain. Floyd Toole was right!




Testing wood panels targeted to 45 Hz and placed on top of rockwool absorbers. Very little or no effect but can be useful to prevent sucking up HF.




Huge DIY membrane absorbers on the test. These were borrowed. Advertised as very effective. Didn't help much here. This is one strange room!




The rest of styropor was used to build much simpler diffuser. Super easy.




Gave up achieving good stereo sound using just two speakers. Adding third sub confirmed more subs can be effective.




BAD panel replica. Took me a week to drill those 850 holes. I think I lost weight!




Last and probably least: more difusers. This time cubes were bought precisely sliced. I just glued them together. Still, took me 30 minutes for one 7x7 panel.




Rack from behind: bad cable management.

Last edited by gerchy; 03-11-2020 at 10:01 AM. Reason: correcting typing errors...
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post #4 of 28 Old 03-09-2020, 11:53 AM
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Wow. What an immense amount of effort and time you have devoted. Very impressive craftsmanship indeed.

I hope it sounds as good as it looks.

Pour yourself a congratulatory adult beverage and enjoy a good movie!
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post #5 of 28 Old 03-09-2020, 12:26 PM - Thread Starter
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Thank you, Roger. And thank you again for all your words of wisdom.

I often hear one must really like this hobby to put so much time in it.
Stubbornness helps too.
And learning from the the best was certainly very helpful and inspirational.

I think it sounds great but I'd very much like to hear other theaters to get more insight.
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post #6 of 28 Old 03-09-2020, 02:11 PM
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Very cool!

My Theater Build - Full Circle Cinema

Left over Supplies for Sale - For Sale
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I like seeing overseas builds. It's interesting to see differences in materials and just the way things are done.

Your room looks great. I appreciate all of the testing of different acoustic treatments.
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post #8 of 28 Old 03-10-2020, 06:13 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by weavinator View Post
I like seeing overseas builds. It's interesting to see differences in materials and just the way things are done.

Your room looks great. I appreciate all of the testing of different acoustic treatments.
Thank you.

The big difference are primary materials. We mostly use brick/concrete here in Europe. And then we seal everything real tight to avoid potential energy losses. This is bad for the acoustics. If I would do it again, I would probably go with a concrete basement and put at least 25" of absorption all around. Ceiling too. I would then cover all surfaces with air transparent diffusers (as seen above). I was even thinking of putting absorption below main speakers area. Like a riser - only flushmounted in the floor. This is relatively easy, cheap and effective solution but would of course require much bigger room.

Maybe some day ...
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post #9 of 28 Old 03-11-2020, 05:43 AM
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One of the best Central European Home Theater for sure. As a Central European myself it's good to see a build in a brick house Can you please talk more about the acoustic treatment? How did you plan those panels and cut them so well? Did you find a blueprint for them or all designed by you? How much they cost? I'm sure as a Central European you probably considered prebuilt brands like GIK. Was it worth the hassle to build yourself? Sorry if I missed something
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post #10 of 28 Old 03-11-2020, 06:55 AM - Thread Starter
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Thanks, I'm happy to share some details.

I didn't seriously consider prebuild brands. Aesthetic in high on my list and buying commercial stuff would mean compromise for such small room.

Wood slats (on side walls) are laminated spruce wood. All this was made by a carpenter with a CNC machine. I provided detailed plans, painted them and put them together. The concept can be seen or found online, I just added some individual touches to meet my needs. I had high hopes for these but they didn't solve my bass issues the way I hoped. I'm sure thicker absorption inside would be more effective.

Skyline diffusers - first round was all hand work. Cut everything by myself. Second round was bought already sliced according to my specs. Styropor manufacturer offered CNC slicing for a bargain. I think I paid 60 Euros for 2500 pieces. I glued them together with the help of PRD calculators online.

BAD panel hole pattern can also be found online. I built 5 panels, each is 6" deep. Behind perforated panel there are two layers of rockwool. 2" with airflow resistivity 50.000 kPAs/m3 and 4" with 15.000 kPAs/m3. They didn't make much differences when doing measurements but anything is better than a bare wall.

The rest of the treatment is rockwool (5.000 and 10.000 kPAs/m3) covered/sealed with black gardening cloth.

I guess each treatment added something. Plus, gear calibration and placement.

The whole acoustic treatment is worth approx +3000 Euros + countless hours of studying, assembling and testing.
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Last edited by gerchy; 03-11-2020 at 09:48 AM. Reason: Language corrections. :-)
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post #11 of 28 Old 03-11-2020, 01:09 PM
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@gerchy Excellent build. What are the dimensions of the room?
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post #12 of 28 Old 03-11-2020, 11:51 PM - Thread Starter
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Thanks! Room dimensions - WxDxH: 3450 x 7200 x 2830 mm (11,3 x 23,6 x 9,3).
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This is an awesome theater, great build and very clean. Really like how your speaker cables. I have thought of having my home office in my theater, but I would probably be tempted to watch movies instead.

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Saw your room on Facebook and was hoping to see more. Awesome room!
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post #15 of 28 Old 03-13-2020, 12:26 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gerchy View Post
Thanks, I'm happy to share some details.

I didn't seriously consider prebuild brands. Aesthetic in high on my list and buying commercial stuff would mean compromise for such small room.

Wood slats (on side walls) are laminated spruce wood. All this was made by a carpenter with a CNC machine. I provided detailed plans, painted them and put them together. The concept can be seen or found online, I just added some individual touches to meet my needs. I had high hopes for these but they didn't solve my bass issues the way I hoped. I'm sure thicker absorption inside would be more effective.

Skyline diffusers - first round was all hand work. Cut everything by myself. Second round was bought already sliced according to my specs. Styropor manufacturer offered CNC slicing for a bargain. I think I paid 60 Euros for 2500 pieces. I glued them together with the help of PRD calculators online.

BAD panel hole pattern can also be found online. I built 5 panels, each is 6" deep. Behind perforated panel there are two layers of rockwool. 2" with airflow resistivity 50.000 kPAs/m3 and 4" with 15.000 kPAs/m3. They didn't make much differences when doing measurements but anything is better than a bare wall.

The rest of the treatment is rockwool (5.000 and 10.000 kPAs/m3) covered/sealed with black gardening cloth.

I guess each treatment added something. Plus, gear calibration and placement.

The whole acoustic treatment is worth approx +3000 Euros + countless hours of studying, assembling and testing.
In the meantime I've done some research and the planning part is indeed not that bad but building everything properly is tough and time consuming for sure yet you built everything so well that they look like prebuilt ones, very professional Specially the side wall diffusers even though that might be the easiest to build.

But maybe paying someone to build them is still cheaper than prebuilt brands.


You mean 3000 euros if you buy prebuilt or the material costs were that much so even DIY it's 3000 euros
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post #16 of 28 Old 03-13-2020, 12:56 AM - Thread Starter
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This is an awesome theater, great build and very clean. Really like how your speaker cables. I have thought of having my home office in my theater, but I would probably be tempted to watch movies instead.
Haha, that is a valid thought though. It is tempting, I admit.
Speaker cables are easy if you know how to make hair twists (which I don't). Here's the source: https://www.tnt-audio.com/clinica/triple_t_e.html

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tedd View Post
Saw your room on Facebook and was hoping to see more. Awesome room!
Ah yes, the Sony ES group. I'm so glad I created it, there are so many owners around the globe with really nice setups.

Quote:
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In the meantime I've done some research and the planning part is indeed not that bad but building everything properly is tough and time consuming for sure yet you built everything so well that they look like prebuilt ones, very professional Specially the side wall diffusers even though that might be the easiest to build.

But maybe paying someone to build them is still cheaper than prebuilt brands.

You mean 3000 euros if you buy prebuilt or the material costs were that much so even DIY it's 3000 euros
No, 3000 + my work. That included everything - even failed attempts of acoustic treatment. And screws, paint, glue, insulation, foam, wood, styropor and carpenter labour for sidewall stuff. I agree, paying someone might be cheaper and you would still get a custom solution.
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post #17 of 28 Old 03-13-2020, 07:19 AM
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I love to see vintage gear integrated in modern setups, and you have done an amazing job here. The gear, the room treatments, it all came together so nicely, and all of the work you put in shows. How do you like the Arquen diffusers? I have been looking at their stuff for a while and had planned to use some of the thin ones (Leanfuser I think?) in my room.


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post #18 of 28 Old 03-13-2020, 09:30 AM - Thread Starter
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Actually, I have left only 4 Arquen diffusers on the rear wall. They are thin so they fit nicely behind my screens. Not sure how effective they are but they look cool and are certainly better than a bare wall.
I bought them from a guy who made them himself.



@fatallerror , I can provide more pictures from making of the sidewall diffusers if you are interested.
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I can provide more pictures from making of the sidewall diffusers if you are interested.
Yes please! I love these, my favorite part of your room
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post #20 of 28 Old 03-13-2020, 10:37 AM - Thread Starter
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Here you go:
https://we.tl/t-WpAS8ZkeCb
I included a document with my own random sequence, slats quantity and primer+colour details.
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post #21 of 28 Old 03-14-2020, 06:31 AM
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Quote:
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Here you go:
https://we.tl/t-WpAS8ZkeCb
I included a document with my own random sequence, slats quantity and primer+colour details.

Pretty cool structure, I like that the slates are a separate add-on, it must be heavy Thanks again
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post #22 of 28 Old 03-16-2020, 08:46 AM
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I just saw this, very very nice room! great work.

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post #23 of 28 Old 03-19-2020, 03:19 AM - Thread Starter
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Thank you all for your kind replies.
Since this is a vintage theater here's picture showing former JBL surround speaker and a tape deck behind. Both from 1991/1992.
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post #24 of 28 Old 03-25-2020, 01:38 PM
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Absolutely love it! and I hope you dont mind as I might ask a few questions once I give this whole thread another read over.

Projector: BenQ w1500 + ES Sable 135" 16:9 Screen AVR: Marantz SR6011 ATMOS/DTSX + Unity 2ch Amp + Darbee 5000s Speakers: Polk Audio TSX550t (FL/FR), CS2 Series II (C), FXiA6 (SL/SR), Monitor40 Series II (RL/RR), TSx110B (Ceiling FL/FR RL/RR) LFE: (2) JL Audio 12" Subs + (2) Dayton 15" Subs + (2) ButtKicker LFE Arrangement: 7.1.4 Source: OPPO UDP-203 4k Bluray Player, HTPC, nVidia Shield TV Pro, Hauppauge OTA DVR
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gerchy View Post
Here you go:
https://we.tl/t-WpAS8ZkeCb
I included a document with my own random sequence, slats quantity and primer+colour details.
Link is no longer available, would it be possible to upload that related documents to say a google drive folder? I would love to look over them as well and learn from them.

Thank you.

Projector: BenQ w1500 + ES Sable 135" 16:9 Screen AVR: Marantz SR6011 ATMOS/DTSX + Unity 2ch Amp + Darbee 5000s Speakers: Polk Audio TSX550t (FL/FR), CS2 Series II (C), FXiA6 (SL/SR), Monitor40 Series II (RL/RR), TSx110B (Ceiling FL/FR RL/RR) LFE: (2) JL Audio 12" Subs + (2) Dayton 15" Subs + (2) ButtKicker LFE Arrangement: 7.1.4 Source: OPPO UDP-203 4k Bluray Player, HTPC, nVidia Shield TV Pro, Hauppauge OTA DVR
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post #26 of 28 Old 03-26-2020, 02:41 AM - Thread Starter
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Sure, I can also post here. Got some more time now in quarantine.

I saw this online but made some changes since I didn't have so much space and I had some aesthetic requirements as well.
http://www.aes.org/tmpFiles/elib/20200326/18225.pdf
I'm sure 25" asorption all around would give much more better results which was proven by the author.
I like this concept because it's easy to do and it look "clean" and unobtrusive.

I made a couple of my own random sequences and I chosed the one that had the nicest look.


































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post #27 of 28 Old 03-26-2020, 01:23 PM
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Incredible, simply incredible, I wish I had that much know how... do you work in the Acoustic field or was this all self taught? I dont even know where I would begin to try and figure all this out or even know what I am looking at to even start figuring out what needs to be fixed.

Projector: BenQ w1500 + ES Sable 135" 16:9 Screen AVR: Marantz SR6011 ATMOS/DTSX + Unity 2ch Amp + Darbee 5000s Speakers: Polk Audio TSX550t (FL/FR), CS2 Series II (C), FXiA6 (SL/SR), Monitor40 Series II (RL/RR), TSx110B (Ceiling FL/FR RL/RR) LFE: (2) JL Audio 12" Subs + (2) Dayton 15" Subs + (2) ButtKicker LFE Arrangement: 7.1.4 Source: OPPO UDP-203 4k Bluray Player, HTPC, nVidia Shield TV Pro, Hauppauge OTA DVR
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post #28 of 28 Old 03-27-2020, 01:07 AM - Thread Starter
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Incredible, simply incredible, I wish I had that much know how... do you work in the Acoustic field or was this all self taught? I dont even know where I would begin to try and figure all this out or even know what I am looking at to even start figuring out what needs to be fixed.
Thank you. No, this is just a hobby to me. 3 or 4 years ago I knew very little about this. Even now my knowledge is pretty basic but at least I know now exactly what I'd do different next time.
Generally, if you have enough space, you want as much absorption you can get and then cover it with difussive surfaces.
If not, you need to put the treatment on crucial places.
I can recommend some literature which might come handy if you're starting a new build.
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