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Discussion Starter #1
Hi everybody, I recently went under contract on my first ever house, and in the excitement I'm starting to dream about my first ever home theater.

I have absolutely no idea what the actual dimensions of the space are, nor really what I'm doing, but here are a couple of things I do know:
- Man cave is going in in the basement.
- I would love a cinescope screen.
- I have allotted some $3000-4000 for a projector, screen and speakers, but the wife is probably going to let that take a couple of years to complete.
- Usage will be something like 50% movies, 40% gaming and 10% tv.
- I'm a complete novice but diligent diy-er.

Attached is a rough sketch of the layout and potential setups as well as some actual photos of the space...

Any help in regards to what projector and screen to choose (especially with 2.35 and pc/ps4 gaming in mind), or suggestions on the layout will be very very much appreciated!

Thank you!

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Johan
 

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Discussion Starter #2
In my #3 mock I had that the screen would sit on the angled wall "next to fireplace" but evidenced by the photos my memory obviously betrayed me as there clearly is no fireplace there.

Anything in the room currently is also the property of the previous owners, so everything would go.
 

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You've got a blank canvas to work with, which is always fun! I'm glad to hear the existing decor will be done away with. The previous owners had some - ahem - interesting design style(s).

As a fellow novice, I can only suggest the screen go on a wall away from windows, though they can be covered up I suppose...

It's a big room, which would give you lots of space to play in! Invest in a small pop-up screen to start out with and play with the position.
 

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I did a write up on my website so people could understand some of the technical details behind a home theater. This is especially geared towards people who don't know a lot about what kind of screen, sound, projector, etc. that they are looking for. I would also appreciate some feedback from those of you who have been around for a long time as far as cleaning up the article (I just did my first draft today) and if there are other threads that might be able to use the info I posted.

Its at

http://www.cloudvistas.com/the-world-of-home-theater-and-its-evolution/

I don't consider it a finished work, but figure it's a start.
 

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Hi everybody, I recently went under contract on my first ever house, and in the excitement I'm starting to dream about my first ever home theater.

I have absolutely no idea what the actual dimensions of the space are, nor really what I'm doing, but here are a couple of things I do know:
- Man cave is going in in the basement.
- I would love a cinescope screen.
- I have allotted some $3000-4000 for a projector, screen and speakers, but the wife is probably going to let that take a couple of years to complete.
- Usage will be something like 50% movies, 40% gaming and 10% tv.
- I'm a complete novice but diligent diy-er.

Attached is a rough sketch of the layout and potential setups as well as some actual photos of the space...

Any help in regards to what projector and screen to choose (especially with 2.35 and pc/ps4 gaming in mind), or suggestions on the layout will be very very much appreciated!

Thank you!

/
Johan

Personally I like your 2nd idea - projector in the storage room. I built a projector closet myself, in a bonus room. You will never have to worry about how loud the projector is - ever.


Here are a few photos of my theater - http://www.avsforum.com/photopost/showgallery.php?cat=2386514&page=2


Give us a call at AV Science if we can be of help. :)
 

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I'm with Craig, I like your 2nd idea best also. Although the first may be easier since you won't have to do anything really about the windows other then black them out. And having access behind the screen could be really nice for hiding speakers and AV equipment. I'd suggest getting some measurements as soon as you can. Then you'll get a better feel for room size and distance to screen and you'll get a feel for what you can do for seating as well. It just helps to have measurements over all. Congrats on the new space! Like Jaurhead says having a blank canvas is nice to start with. Maybe you can get the previous owner to throw in that couch though! That would make a killer second row ;) I shouldn't kid. I have an old sectional in my room still :eek:
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Thank you so much for the suggestions guys!

The "theater-space" allotted in mock #1 and #2 are 11 feet wide and 17 feet deep, with 8 foot drop ceilings (one of the first things we'll do will be to install a dry wall ceiling, so might gain a few inches there...).

As far as the projector goes, and budget, gaming and 2.35/40 being some of my priorities, the BenQ W1070 sounds like a pretty decent way to go...

Understood that I'm able to control the lighting which I don't really know at this point, what type of DIY screen/gain should I be looking at given the projector and room dimensions?

Thank you all!
 

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Continuing to dream....

Though I have yet to play around with the "lens memory function" and really have yet to fully understand how it works even, here is a quick sketch of a manually operated (possibly motorized in the future) simple 4-way masking system I had in mind for switching between 2.40 and 16:9 and fitting the screen size for the experience... I guess either one would be slightly zoomed, or the other "downsampled"..
 

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You have several options on where to place the screen, but as you consider them don't lose sight of the fact speaker placement is important too. I'm not sure how many speakers you plan to use, but for each potential screen location, I would identify the speaker locations. You might find that certain screen positions create serious issues with regard to where to place the speakers.
 

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Continuing to dream....

Though I have yet to play around with the "lens memory function" and really have yet to fully understand how it works even, here is a quick sketch of a manually operated (possibly motorized in the future) simple 4-way masking system I had in mind for switching between 2.40 and 16:9 and fitting the screen size for the experience... I guess either one would be slightly zoomed, or the other "downsampled"..
This is something I tortured myself over for a good couple years when I was building my room and trying to figure out what projector and screen to go with. I'll just tell you from my experience and of course everyone is different in what they find acceptable to look at on their screen. I went back and forth on what aspect ratio to go with because for me I was split between watching movies and sports. Most movies these days are in some form of scope and all sports will be in 16:9. So this drove me crazy and of course I didn't have a projector or any first had experience with one so I was making it way more complicated in my head then I needed to.

For me I knew my budget for the PJ was between 2-3k range. there was only one projector that had any lens memory and that was an older JVC projector I believe, so I didn't plan to go that rout. An anamorphic lens was out of the question due to price so my delema was what was more important. Seeing movies in full screen with no cropping or seeing sports in full glory? In the end I deemed that on a 135 inch diag 16:9 screen I would loose less of my image with movies on a 16:9 screen then I would sports on a scope screen. So going 16:9 and using a masking system on the top and bottom seemed like the best way to go. So I did end up going that way in the end and I'm happy I did. For one I don't notice the loss when watching my movies and if they are not shot in scope then all the better as they are even more immersive at full 16:9. Also sports are way better in full screen and not having to mask the sides of the screen.

So now I"m going on 4 months with my screen and I'll tell you what. I don't really even have plans to build any masking system. my room is fully light controlled so the "black bars" on my screen do not bother me at all. Again people are all different and you may very well find masking is what you really prefer. I guess my advice now is to not drive yourself crazy with it yet. Put thought into what projector you can afford and if you can afford one with lens memory or a high priced lens then great! But if you can't decide what's more important. Also remember more and more movies are being shot in both scope and 16:9 so they go back and forth between the 2 aspect ratios. Interstellar is one that just came out that does this constantly. That will play havoc on a scope screen setup. I have a 16:9 screen so I get the best of both. I've now even noticed in some movie theaters there are "black bars" on the screen and they look just like mine at home and I forget all about them. Another piece of advice I can give is to get the screen after your projector is up and running. Play with it on your wall first. then decide how big to go and what ratio you prefer.

Edit: sorry about the wall of text there... I didn't go with a DYI screen myself but if that's the rout your leaning towards I'd suggest looking at the screen forums. Lots of good info there on screens. I ended up getting an Elite 135" 16:9 Sable frame in Cinewhite http://www.amazon.com/Elite-Screens...96&sr=8-4&keywords=elite+120+projector+screen

I want to say mine was only around $440.00 said and done. Entry level screen for sure but it gives a great picture for a fraction of the cost of some of the more expensive screens. But of course if you do go DIY you can do it for much less still. I just didn't feel like messing with it myself. Mono price does offer a screen with built in masking. It's a bit more and not sure how big they come but here's a video. they seem pretty cool.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
So the old carpet is out, the drop ceiling is gone, drywall ceiling and cans are in and painted... As we're now renovating the ENTIRE house (what started with painting one of the bathrooms), my budget is sadly shrinking fast, but here is what I had planned to order tonight from Amazon and what I would LOVE some feedback on:

BenQ W1070 - $699
Onkyo TX-NR535 5.2 - $289.99
Energy 5.1 Take Classic - $299

How would that fair together?

Would I be asking for trouble getting the receiver refurbished?

I think I want to wait to decide on a screen until I've had a chance to play around with the projector, but from 12'-15' distance, does anyone have any recommendations?
Due to a couple of things I think the only real solution is what I described in "Figure 1" in my original post.

Based on the equipment I have selected so far, would an AT screen work, and what would be my best low-budget alternatives?

Thank you all for a source of endless knowledge!
 
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