Originally Posted by peniku8
I remember seeing pics of this in the thread about the new screen. I was speechless about this courtyard and I still am. I haven't realized back then that this is in fact completely under ground, which is unbelievable. Probably the only theater I've seen which I'd enjoy spending 2 hours just in front of it as well as inside. Bravo!
Yeah, one of the many fundamental limitations people run into when designing a home theater is that they don't have enough height. The finished ceiling at the front is 16' high. As it turns out, that is the minimum height needed for this theater. Everything barely fits. From the top, you have framing for the ceiling. Then you have a curved ceiling down to the proscenium and the proscenium has to be tall enough to accept a rather large drape motor so that the drapes can roll up. Then you have the proscenium itself. Then you have drapes that are always shown, even when rolled up. Then you need space for the first center channel speaker, then your 16x9 screen, then another center channel speaker. All that must be crammed up as high as possible since you have stadium seating and you'd rather be looking at the screen than down to the screen.
So, a 16' (interior) high room x 30' long, just for the theater. If you didn't put this underground, that would be one heck of a giant windowless cube to architecturally hide somehow.
So ideally that means underground, and at 16'+ height, that means purpose built.
BTW, I partially attribute the great acoustics in this theater to the ceiling height (and its many uneven surfaces).