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After lurking around for a long time browsing other DIYers theater builds, I'm finally getting ready to start work on "my" room. It's an upstairs bonus room (17'x35') inside the trusses of a home addition we're building. The first pic is front right corner of the theater end where I plan to put the screen. The wing wall is 5'7" high then it slopes up to the ceiling (12:6 pitch). The center is 8' high and the ceiling is about 8' wide at that height. The 2nd pic gives a better overall view of the theater end of the room. You can see my taped outline for a pool table at the game end of the room. In the darker pic after the first coat of paint, the kids are already having fun at the "theater" end. I hung up a sheet about where I was going to place the screen and I'm currently throwing a 100" 16x9 image using a neighbor's extra presentation projector. I was thinking worst case, I was going to have the screen out about a 1' from the wing wall to give me another 6" of height for the screen.


The movie end of the room is 17'x14'. 17' deep, 14' wide from the window wall to that opening for the dormer. That hole in the dormer wall is where I was planning on putting the equipment rack. Behind the 5'7" wing walls is attic space. The outside wall and roof are foam insulated. Downstairs is 1/2 garage and the other half is a guest room, bathroom, and laundry room. I'm not worried about soundproofing since the guest room would be used rarely, and chances are, the guests would be upstairs enjoying a movie. I'm going to build some really good, sliding shutters for those windows to provide 100% blackout for daytime viewing. The only other window is a small dormer window.


I'm shooting for two rows of Berkline seating. Probably a curved 3 in the front and a straight or curved 4 in the back. Although I don't know if I can give the back row enough space to be able to fully recline. I was planning on giving the back row just 5'. If I go with a rear straight 4, the outer two should be able to recline. That gives me 10-11' for the front row viewing distance. Which seems just within the range for a 2:39 image using the THX diagram. I don't know how that leaves me for 16x9 viewing. The second row would be on an elevated platform although it is getting tight back there. Plus the projector will have to be inside some type of enclosure that I need to build out from that ceiling. And if I go with a Panasonic AE4000U (or one of those new epson equivalents), I guess I'll be height limited if I want to make use of the memory zoom which I really do want. Hopefully people in the 2nd row won't bump their head on the projector or hear it.


Right now, if I go with a CIH screen of about 48" height, that gives me a 98" diag 16x9 screen and a 122" diag 2.35 screen. If I place it 1' out from the wall, I can get it so the bottom of the screen is 2' off the ground. If I can get away with just 18" from the floor to the bottom of the screen, then I can move the screen back 1' to the wall and gain another 1' of viewing distance. But I don't think I can go too low because of the second row. Or I can give that 1' to the 2nd row.


I'm thinking of ordering the berklines asap during these christmas deals so that I can work on building a matching curved platform and determining how low/high I can build it. Some of my first questions are regarding berkline seats. I've sat in a few at Costco but none of the home theater variety. But what I've always liked about whatever models Costco had, is how as soon as I sit in them, before I even recline, I feel like the chair/seat back is already cradling me, supporting my head. And reclining just gets even more comfortable. I've visited various local stores and none have berkline home theater seating in stock. I'm 5'9". What's the minimum seat back height to make sure I get this feeling? There are so many models too choose from. Money is always an issue and trying to figure out what I can go with. I've been looking at the Berkline 12003 as it seems they have the highest back. Plus if I can get the 2nd row placed just right (maybe instead of a single 4, I can with two pairs of two), maybe they can get a better view of the screen looking between the front row seats.


Looking for ideas!
 

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You need to PM RSH for all questions Berkline. He should be able to answer your questions on seat back and comfort. Of course you should also buy from him. I can't recall any one reporting an issue on this forum that he didn't resolve.
 

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Looks like you have a real nice space there to finish off!


Any chance you could turn your pool table 90 degrees and give yourself some additional room for second row seating/reclining? I'd be pretty disappointed sitting in one of the middle two seats in the rear totally upright while my neighbors get to recline



You'd do well to check in with Roman here to inquire on Berkline seating options. Beware that higher back chairs (44" or so) can limit your surround effect due to the higher backs blocking the sound. I'm 5'9 as well and am glad I got ones at 41" (45032). Just something to consider. Finding Berks locally to check out was a real beyatch for me, but if you scour all options odds are you'll find a place or two which have the models you're interested in trying on for size.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Quote:
Originally Posted by fotto
Looks like you have a real nice space there to finish off!
Thanks! Yes, I'm trying to make it into a fun, multi purpose room that we can all hang out in.

Quote:
Originally Posted by fotto
Any chance you could turn your pool table 90 degrees and give yourself some additional room for second row seating/reclining? I'd be pretty disappointed sitting in one of the middle two seats in the rear totally upright while my neighbors get to recline
The pool table orientation is not the limiting factor right now. I'm not putting the screen on the wall with the windows. That wall with the windows is the right side of the theater area. There is no left side, technically, that would be the pool table area.


I had thought of putting the screen on the window wall at the very end of the room, but then it would be wider than I really need, and the second row would now take up the entire 4' width of the dormer space between the theater and game area, and it would be that much tighter a fit for using the pool table.



Quote:
Originally Posted by fotto
You'd do well to check in with Roman here to inquire on Berkline seating options. Beware that higher back chairs (44" or so) can limit your surround effect due to the higher backs blocking the sound. I'm 5'9 as well and am glad I got ones at 41" (45032). Just something to consider. Finding Berks locally to check out was a real beyatch for me, but if you scour all options odds are you'll find a place or two which have the models you're interested in trying on for size.
I hadn't really thought of a surround sound issue with high seat backs.


Do your 41" high chairs still cradle your head even before reclining?


RSH has a special deal on some 41" high ones right now, 13127.

 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by koyado /forum/post/19560539


The pool table orientation is not the limiting factor right now. I'm not putting the screen on the wall with the windows. That wall with the windows is the right side of the theater area. There is no left side, technically, that would be the pool table area.


I hadn't really thought of a surround sound issue with high seat backs.


Do your 41" high chairs still cradle your head even before reclining?


RSH has a special deal on some 41" high ones right now, 13127.


Oops, sorry about the orientation...I missed that. The chairs I bought (from Roman BTW) are very comfortable with the exception that I would like to take a little foam out of the headrest as I feel like I'm sitting a bit forward when not reclined (they're fine though when reclined). I'd say that yes my head is cradled if your meaning is that it supports/contacts the rear of my head around mid line and down through cervical section. Hard to recommend anything though as everyone has different preferences and perception of comfort.


There are some even lower backed Berklines like the 45088 which is around 38" if memory serves. Like Big suggested as well, get in touch with Roman and he'll help you narrow down the many options.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·

Quote:
Originally Posted by BIGmouthinDC /forum/post/19560011


You need to PM RSH for all questions Berkline. He should be able to answer your questions on seat back and comfort. Of course you should also buy from him. I can't recall any one reporting an issue on this forum that he didn't resolve.

Done! Just ordered a bunch of those chairs from rsh! Can't wait. Got one with a buttkicker for me. I will wait to see if the family fights for my chair before adding more.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
So I ordered 8 chairs from Roman. All 13217's. 4 curved for the front and 2 sets of 2 curved for the back. Shipping was very quick. Ordered Monday, had them Friday. I finally got 7 of the eight chairs upstairs. At that's left is the end of the front row.


Got the lumber downstairs to build the 2nd row platform. Just torn on how deep to make the second row. Berkline states 6' but I'm trying to get away with 5'. Things are getting tight and I'm trying to keep the first row at 10' for viewing distance (factoring in the screen being out 1' from the front wall) of a 120" 2.35 screen.


Berkline states 71" of space needed. Right now I've got them at 61" and that's including 2" out from the back wall so that they can fully recline. The

2nd row two inner seats have about an 1" of clearance when fully reclined while the two outer ones have a little extra room due to the curvature of the front row. When reclined to what I find comfortable, there's enough room.

I don't know yet if with a 12" riser a fully reclined 2nd row seat will still have good visibility of the screen.


Also got my wiring and the receiver came in too (Yamaha RX-A2000). Now if Epson would just hurry up and ship those new projectors! Also need to start putting down the wood floor for the pool table end of the room.







 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Well, my mind never shuts off and I realized late last night I forgot to factor in the riser height. If I went just 61" 2nd row depth, then the two inside back seats would not be able to fully recline if the front seats were also fully reclined. I need to add around another 7" for both to be able to recline so I'm back to pretty close to Berkline's 71" recommendation.


Another option is to just place the screen on the front wall. That then gives me back another 1' of viewing distance. But then the top of the screen will be 6" lower. With a 120" 2.35 screen (110"x47") that puts the bottom of the screen about 18" up and the top right at the top of the sidewall before the ceiling angles out. That would still be fine for the 1st row, but now the 2nd row eyeline would be just slightly above the center of the screen. And to keep the projector within the bounds of the top of the screen, the projector would be centered just about 1' above the inner two 2nd row headrests.


I'm torn on just rotating everything 90 and putting the screen over the windows, but then the second row would be starting to intrude into pool-table play area.

 
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