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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello everyone,

I've recently decided to start building a HT but I realized I have no idea where to begin. I've done a bit of research but it's nowhere near to what I need to know. I've decided on the BenQ HT1075 for my projector and the Silver Ticket 100" for my screen. If either of them aren't good, please tell me.

I think I've found a fairly decent room in my basement for a HT but there's a few flaws. It's pretty messy but I'll remove everything soon. The room's dimensions (Height, width, length) are 8' X 11' X 18'. Looking at some golden ratios; I think they look okay but let me know what you think. The biggest flaw, I think is around halfway in the room, there is a lowered ceiling plus a pushed in wall on the left. I'm worried it will create distortions in the sound because it's not uniform. Am I right in this thinking? Also I'm not sure how many seats I can fit. 3 seats to a row? Two rows in total? I need some advice because I have no idea how far back my seats should be for a 100" screen and 11' width.

Speaking of screen size, I'm not sure if 100" is good for me. I've read screens should be elevated 3-4 feet and one foot of space from the top. Additionally, I'm thinking of placing my speakers on the side of the screen and considering my room width is only 11 feet, will it fit? I really want that satisfaction of saying I have a 100" screen.:)

One last thing. I'm sorry but I have a lot of questions/problems. The material. For flooring, I currently have tile. Should I completely remove it or can I just add a rug on top of it. For the drywall, can I leave it as is or do I need to add acoustic panels.

If you can answer any of my questions or give feedback, I would appreciate it a lot! I look forward to seeing your responses!

-Brian
 

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Figure out the seating first. Then pick an appropriate screen size for your arrangement. Not the other way 'round (which is how most everyone starts their thinking, but isn't the best method)...

One row of seating or more? With 18' of depth you can certainly have two rows, but whether that's a row of seats on a riser, or a bar with stools, will be up to you. How many people do you want to seat comfortably? Remember you can always squeeze in temporary seating for those once-a-year (Superbowl) events...

Jeff
 

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Well I've been at it around 9 years now - I'm no expert but I can share my knowledge and experiences if it helps! Here is my build thread (in my sig) which will give you an idea of what I did and I can answer any questions you have from what I have done.
For your space I would suggest this, height wise I don't think you have a issue, my ceiling is a little higher at 8'9" and with a riser for the second row there is more than enough ceiling height. My width is about the same as you. Its good for an average size 3 seat row with room to walk by for getting to your seat - I would say its tight if through traffic was going past all the time. Length I think you are good with 18' and two rows with your size screen for sure. Some people like to be really close to a big screen other don't, I like to be back a bit where my wife like to be closer ;). With the great projectors and screens today you can get close and not have any issues like screen door or seeing pixels etc. I started with 106" standard def (480p) projector with first row at 15' and it was like HD (in fact better than my mates 720p setup where he was 8' from his 84" screen). Personally I know nothing about the projector and screen you selected, nor your budget or what you want from your room. For me it was all about theater and movies, no TV, no Games, no Sports - I do all that in another room. I don't think you will have any sound related issues with the bulkhead, see my thread where I have a huge projector box built across the middle row with no impact to sound. I can tell you that Falcon Screens are amazing compared to the DaLite I started with but I think they mainly do AT and you are going with non AT I guess to keep as much space as possible? If you want the biggest picture and maximum space between screen and first row you could go in-wall which is where I ended up along with some other guys here! There are some really good options now that compare very well with towers and give you an amazing screen experience. I went from 106" to 131" and it blows me away everytime I watch a film now - I think you could go bigger than 100" if you wanted. This is great for 3D if you are into that and scoped movies look so much better due to the larger width. I can also recommend Epson UB projectors, the 5030UB (I have the 5020UB) is great for light power and blacks totally amazing picture and compares with others like the Panny offering. Again depends on how you want to use that space and your budget? I would also recommend sound treatments, they made a huge difference in sound quality - you don't need to go crazy, I started with some DIY panels hung on the wall and then did a upgrade to recessed them into the wall and put molding around.
SO tell us more of your vision and I'm sure there will be plenty of advice here :D
 

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The space should be fine for two rows with that size of screen...but depending on the chairs you select, the front row may only be able to be 2 seats wide. Also, if you are going to use recliners, allow about 6.5' for each row...so even if you put the rear seats all the way back (not great for acoustics) that's using 13' of the 18' you have...so you want have any extra room for sure. If you do one row of recliners and a second row of commercial theater type chairs, you would have some more room to play with...and you wouldn't need your riser to be built quite as high.

I'm making the assumption that you won't be doing any soundproofing from the question about drywall. If that's the case, just know that your room will have a higher "noise floor", which means it will be louder in the room when it's silent (I know, sounds wierd), which will lower the dynamic range of your sound that you can hear in there. Not a show-stopper, but just something you should know about. Of course that also means that everyone in the house will get to enjoy the audio from whatever you're watching. :)

I wouldn't worry about the popouts in the room...you should be able to work around that. The biggest concerns I see are the doors...two of them as far as I can tell. They look to be in problematic spots, so you'll need to address that (by changing your design or moving them, etc.).

Your 100" screen should be fine in that room...it would allow your front row to be slightly closer than most (100" is on the small side for most dedicated home theaters). On the other hand, it will be a little small, most likely, for your back row...but these are the breaks in a small room (mine is small, too). If you wanted to, you could probably go a little bit bigger, but not much.

As for acoustical treatments, the answer is yes...you will need some. Every room does. And the tile can cause some reflection problems for the sound (and even the video, considering it's very light colored), so you will need to address it somehow. You can remove it, carpet over it, or strategically place absorbent material on it (like a rug, as you said). Pay special attention to the first reflection points (i.e. between the front row and the front speakers). If you keep the tile, I think you will find you really need to treat the ceiling well with absorbers (maybe diffusers as well). You usually can't leave both the ceiling and the floor very reflective...your sounds will last longer than intended. :)

Best advise I can give right now is read a lot. It sounds like you could do a bit more research and planning. I know it can be overwhelming (we were all there once), but read a ton of build threads...and when the stickies in this forum are particularly helpful. Plan out the room, measure a lot...stand in the empty room and imagine a lot, mock it up, and your design will come out. Focus on the doors...I think they will be your biggest issue. Do you need both?

Good luck and have fun.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Many thanks

The space should be fine for two rows with that size of screen...but depending on the chairs you select, the front row may only be able to be 2 seats wide. Also, if you are going to use recliners, allow about 6.5' for each row...so even if you put the rear seats all the way back (not great for acoustics) that's using 13' of the 18' you have...so you want have any extra room for sure. If you do one row of recliners and a second row of commercial theater type chairs, you would have some more room to play with...and you wouldn't need your riser to be built quite as high.

I'm making the assumption that you won't be doing any soundproofing from the question about drywall. If that's the case, just know that your room will have a higher "noise floor", which means it will be louder in the room when it's silent (I know, sounds wierd), which will lower the dynamic range of your sound that you can hear in there. Not a show-stopper, but just something you should know about. Of course that also means that everyone in the house will get to enjoy the audio from whatever you're watching. :)

I wouldn't worry about the popouts in the room...you should be able to work around that. The biggest concerns I see are the doors...two of them as far as I can tell. They look to be in problematic spots, so you'll need to address that (by changing your design or moving them, etc.).

Your 100" screen should be fine in that room...it would allow your front row to be slightly closer than most (100" is on the small side for most dedicated home theaters). On the other hand, it will be a little small, most likely, for your back row...but these are the breaks in a small room (mine is small, too). If you wanted to, you could probably go a little bit bigger, but not much.

As for acoustical treatments, the answer is yes...you will need some. Every room does. And the tile can cause some reflection problems for the sound (and even the video, considering it's very light colored), so you will need to address it somehow. You can remove it, carpet over it, or strategically place absorbent material on it (like a rug, as you said). Pay special attention to the first reflection points (i.e. between the front row and the front speakers). If you keep the tile, I think you will find you really need to treat the ceiling well with absorbers (maybe diffusers as well). You usually can't leave both the ceiling and the floor very reflective...your sounds will last longer than intended. :)

Best advise I can give right now is read a lot. It sounds like you could do a bit more research and planning. I know it can be overwhelming (we were all there once), but read a ton of build threads...and when the stickies in this forum are particularly helpful. Plan out the room, measure a lot...stand in the empty room and imagine a lot, mock it up, and your design will come out. Focus on the doors...I think they will be your biggest issue. Do you need both?

Good luck and have fun.
Thank you so much for all the advice! It really gave me direction in what I really want my theater to look like. I'll be sure to add acoustic materials on the floor, wall, and ceilings. Also, I'll be opting for a bigger screen now. Thanks again so much!

-Brian
 
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