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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello all,


I've been a member for a long time, and have followed many of your theater builds (which is where I have gotten most of my ideas!). However, I have some questions that I can't seem to find the answers to. Any help you guys can give would be great, and/or links that may help me find my way.


Quick Background: I am building a custom home in approximately 2-3 years, and have already convinced the wife that we must have a dedicated home theater. The theater is so important to me that I will essentially design the basement around it and the general gaming area. I plan on creating the room-within-a-room model, as it will be relatively easy in a new development. I also plan to have the home builder keep ductwork and other items out of the main path of the room, so no unnecessary issues with soffits, etc. I plan on using all of the standard soundproofing items, such as gg, staggered stud walls, double drywall, decoupling of walls and ceilings.


The questions I have are as follows:


1) I have seen that many of you have used design specialists to help with acoustical treatments, design aspects, etc. and I plan on that route. However, in the stage of planning I'm in now, are there any resources that I can use for a basic template, i.e. example room sizes?, things like the riser height calculator. I was going to go with something like 22x16, but am open to suggestions. I want two rows of seating, with 3 to 4 seats in each row. I just need a starting point, and though I can see pictures of rooms, there aren't many plans available.


2) This one has been bothering me. Why don't more people place their projector in another room, i.e. in a utility room behind the theater, with all of the equipment. This would eliminate fan noise in the room, and would streamline installation. I understand that a projector has to be a certain distance away from the screen (i.e. throw distance) and that it has a certain amount of zoom involved (i.e. throw ratio), but the one thing that I am having trouble finding is a definite range of distances for any certain projector. I want a screen approximately 120", and would like to keep my minimum viewing distance to 14-16 feet?? Am I out of my mind wanting to put it that far away, would I need a special zoom lens, would I lose too much resolution?


As I have stated before, I have read many of your threads, including the "things I would do differently" thread, and have gotten many ideas. I just thought I would get a head start.


Thanks in advance.


-Matt
 

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Here is a thread about ideal room size for a 6-8 person, two row theater, including very useful answers from Dennis Erskine.

http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showt...634&highlight=


I think the reason why most don't have the projector in another room is not having another room to put it in. Also you have to get special glass (non reflective) to shine through and throw distances, though if you are using an anamorphic lens the throw distances should be kept long, so this may be less of an issue.


Greg
 

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The separate room is a great option if your space is conforming. You also need to verify that the distance is within the throw range for the projector and screen size you select. Often the image will be too large at room size distances. Another alternative is to build a hush box integrated in a rear soffit.


Hanging a projector on the ceiling really isn't an issue with the quiet projectors on the market today.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by mattass02 /forum/post/18225688


I am having trouble finding is a definite range of distances for any certain projector.

Projector People and Projection Central both have interactive throw distance calculators on their web sites for most popular projectors. What is your current favorite?
 

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My opinion on room size is to have it based on what you want out of the room, not necessarily by some calculator. For example, I had to build my theater around a fixed room size that already existed. But if I had a basement in which to build from scratch then I would want the room to accomodate a certain number of seats, I would want a dedicated closet space for an equipment rack, a bar area in the rear of the room and room to build a false wall so that I could go the transparent screen route with everything hidden. I would also want to have a concession area outside the theater for my popcorn machine and other munchies ( and a fridge for beer of course). So my point is, decide what you want the room to be like and then plan accordingly.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
@Scopeguy


Thanks for the link, it actually helped a lot with some of my room sizing questions. That Dennis Erskine is a smart fella
.


@davidk


I like your idea of having the bar in the theater, and my original plan was very similar. However, I decided that I would have a dedicated theater with only seating, and an external "game room" that will have a large dedicated wet bar, as well as having a space to place a TV for sports, my Golden Tee arcade, and my custom built 10-person poker table.


@BigMouthinDC

I checked out those two websites before, but I must have missed the interactive projector throw ratio application before. I used Dennis's idea for a room about 29x17x10, but was having some trouble finding a projector that had that long of a throw. I still would prefer to hide the projector for aesthetics, maybe I'll hide it in a soffit/hush box configuration.


In regards to your question about which projector I prefer, I still haven't narrowed it down (it will be my last purchase). All of my experience with projectors had led me to an LCOS based projector, such as a nicer Sony or JVC. However, I have noticed that a lot of people like the Panasonic LCD projector(the 4000 I believe). I guess I will have to make a choice when I am closer to the build date. Heck, by then, I'll be able to get a mind projector, or something similar
.


Thanks again for all of your recommendations.

-Matt
 

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IMHO, this is not the time to be coming up with the equipment for the room. Right now you, I, nor anyone else can tell you what the technical requirements for the equipment will be as dictated by the room. Further, you say 2-3 years for the home ... what you'd buy today ain't going to be what you'd want in 2 years. So, don't be cluttering your mind with projectors, speakers, screens ... focus on getting the room (and the rest of the house) on track.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dennis Erskine /forum/post/18239978


IMHO, this is not the time to be coming up with the equipment for the room. Right now you, I, nor anyone else can tell you what the technical requirements for the equipment will be as dictated by the room. Further, you say 2-3 years for the home ... what you'd buy today ain't going to be what you'd want in 2 years. So, don't be cluttering your mind with projectors, speakers, screens ... focus on getting the room (and the rest of the house) on track.

^^^Best advice ever!^^^



CJ
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
@Dennis


Thanks for the advice. I really haven't been too preoccupied with the equipment, I just had some prior experience with home theater equipment at my previous employer (I was the home theater supervisor of a big box retailer for 6 years), and as such had some favorites. The one thing I didn't work with too much was dedicated home theaters and their applications. I do realize that when I am ready for the actual build, I will make my decision on all of the particulars, such as projector, speakers, etc.


As of right now, for basic design purposes, is my idea of hiding the projector in an adjacent room a pipe dream, either now or in the forseeable future. The placement could affect the actual design of the room (i.e. soffits/hush boxes)etc.


Thanks again for your expertise, and by the way, do you know of any good places near St. Louis, MO to see some good home theaters in action.


@carboranadum


Just thought I'd let you know that your build was the first that I followed from start to finish, and most of the ideas I got were from your home theater design.

The detail of your build documentation is amazing! Hope you finish soon.


-Matt
 

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Matt - if your HT will be in the basement, don't forget to construct 9' or 10' basement walls. I designed the basement in our new house specifically with the HT in mind, but neglected the 9' walls for basement ceiling. I now regret that.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by mattass02 /forum/post/18239077


@BigMouthinDC

I checked out those two websites before, but I must have missed the interactive projector throw ratio application before.

here is one sample. On their site you select a projector, then click complete specs, then click throw calculator.

http://www.projectorpeople.com/promo...c+PT%2DAE4000U
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by W00lly /forum/post/18247440


If possible and if its within your budget I would even go further and do 10' basement walls especially if your going to be doing room within a room.

Definitely. The poured concrete walls of my basement are 8.5 feet, and then there are three courses of 8" concrete block on top of them, making my basement walls 10.5 feet tall. The floor joists are 2x12, so all of the duct and electrical fits nicely within the joist cavities. The only obstruction, really, is the steel I-beam that runs the length of the house, but that would be easy to hide. Having the extremely tall ceilings in a basement is a REALLY nice feature.
 

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Quote:
Just thought I'd let you know that your build was the first that I followed from start to finish, and most of the ideas I got were from your home theater design.

The detail of your build documentation is amazing! Hope you finish soon.


-Matt
Thanks. There are other theaters that are more worthy (IMHO), but I'm glad my ramblings are useful!


CJ
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
@cj


If your thread is a bunch of rambling, I'd hate to see what a well thought out statement would be
. By the way, I like the fact that you post all of your basement pics, not just the theater pics. Gives all of us proper frames of reference.



@wooly and sands


Thanks for the reminder of the high ceiling (9 or 10 feet) issue, which is one of the most brought up item in the "things I'd do differently" thread. My brother in law just built a custom house, and it was the first time I had experienced the way it really opened up the room. Hopefully, I can get the contractors to run ductwork/piping/etc. the way I want it so there are no awkward soffits in the entire basement.


I've heard about having the entrance to the room being at the rear of the room, up on the riser, so that you have to walk down the risers to get to the front row. Do you have to have the theater at a lower elevation than the rest of the basement? Is it something simpler, or am I missing something, because this seems kind of interesting.


-Matt
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by mattass02 /forum/post/18253221




@wooly and sands


Thanks for the reminder of the high ceiling (9 or 10 feet) issue, which is one of the most brought up item in the "things I'd do differently" thread.


I've heard about having the entrance to the room being at the rear of the room, up on the riser, so that you have to walk down the risers to get to the front row. Do you have to have the theater at a lower elevation than the rest of the basement? Is it something simpler, or am I missing something, because this seems kind of interesting.


-Matt

sands?



If you want a rear entrance with a theater look without "steps up" to the entrance, you need to plan for it. A friend of mine did a great job of this in his theater.
 

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Quote:
Thanks again for your expertise, and by the way, do you know of any good places near St. Louis, MO to see some good home theaters in action.

If you can get in to see one of Dennis' theaters, do so! I had the opportunity to visit one that Dennis designed and the homeowner built. I was struck by the proportions and use of space. It sounded great and looked excellent.


It's important to make friends here and not be afraid to ask questions. Heck, I became friends with a few folks when I started and even asked to visit one theater that was under construction. I found it interesting that I was spending so much time and money to build something that I had never experienced before. Thank God for this forum. Now, I've gotten involved with a great bunch of guys who are very willing to share their experiences and open their homes to strangers for meets and impromptu visits.


Go ahead and post a question for builders in St. Louis. Some folks don't post locations because they want to remain behind the scenes. Also, maybe you can reach out to Bryan Pape. He does acoustical designs and such and is located in the St. Louis area. He may know of some people you can contact.


By all means, get integrated into the community and visit some theaters.


CJ
 
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