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Just wondering...since I was thinking about it myself but I'm wondering how big of an issue water pipes, AC ducts, etc would become. Do most of you install a hanging ceiling?
 

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Yep, I put theatre in basement. I did use suspended ceiling and very glad I did. Makes modifications very easy.


Steve
 

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That makes 3 of us.
 

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tried the basement... ended up abandoning it. Later converted the master bedroom to the movie room/second bedroom.
 

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Yes, with a drywall ceiling.

Please don't tell the tax man that I have a finished basement now. Property taxes are high enough!!
 

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Basement, yes. Drywall ceiling - just the theater room. The rest is drop tiles. Replaced metal ductwork with flex-duct inside ductboard. Got lucky and didn't have to move any pipes.
 

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If I had a wine cellar, I don't think I would be able to get rid of it for a theater.

In my case, I have a theater, but no wine cellar.


I assume in your case, you are calling it a cellar, but are referring to a basement. I don't have one since I am in California and the house is only a few years old. They don't build houses with basements around here.
 

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anybody who r using the basement have trouble with AC/Heater noise (when it is operating) while watching a movie/listening to music? any solutions to this? AC/Heater unit basically on the back of sofa from the HT Room..? which noise deadening, soundproofing devices did you use? preferably low-mid priced..
 

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I have finished drywall on the home theater side of the basement. I only have heating/air ducts on this side of the room. I have a drop ceiling on the other half of the room (kids play area) because all of the water pipes and the electrical panel are on this portion of the basement.


My AC/Heating unit is framed in and has finished drywall on the outside. I'm still trying to decide whether I should insulate and/or add drywall to the inside of the framing to try to further restrict noise. I have a pretty quiet unit so it doesn't affect my listening too much.
 

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What I had:


An unfinished basement (20' X 26') with a 6' ceiling in my older (~1925) colonial. Sewer pipes protruding from the floor, steam pipes below the joists. A free-standing toilet (what were they thinking?), laundry hook-ups, gas boiler and water heater. Cement floor.


What I did:


1/2 basement became play area for kids, 1/2 HT/listening room. No wall dividing it, but kids don't play there when I am using the room. 1/2" drywall on all walls, 3/8" drywall nailed right to the ceiling joists, recessed lighting between joists. Boxed in the main beams and steam pipes (some of these extend a foot below the 6' ceiling). Built 3/4 bath where the free-standing toilet was. Commercial grade carpet right over the cement floor (damp basements are not a good place for carpet padding, and I needed to conserve every inch of headroom). Built walls around laudry area and boiler area. Wired a lot of outlets from one 15 amp breaker :( , put in new windows (the basement little ones). Ran roof antenna and Dish cable into basement. Built a storage chest over the exposed sewer pipes. Used heating vent registers to cover and provide access to all electrical junctions, doorbell electronics, antenna cabling & splitters, pipe spigots. Ran speaker wire (16 gauge) to small shelves where I thought bookshelf surrounds would go. Put window a/c unit in window farthest from HT. Applied some foam panels to reflection points to tame excessive brightness in room. Bought a pair of high-back leather chairs with ottomans.


What I did wrong and need to do:


Used flat white paint, will have to re-do in flat black or charcoal. Used one 15 amp breaker. I would like 2 X 20 amp circuits dedicated. Door at top of stairs is solid but with a large window. Need to fill that in and add weather-stripping for noise control (I can hear everything from the kitchen that this door leads to). Portable heater not enough to heat in winter, and a/c unit is coupled to drywall, creating loud 60Hz hum. I am eventually getting a heat pump/cooling unit like this: www.mrslim.com, ($2500-3000). Chair-backs too high for surround; eventually will get lower-back seating. Drywall is not a problem, but some of the recessed lighting fixtures resonate at certain frequencies. Some type of foam stripping should tame this. Boiler noise can be distracting. I need to replace slat bifold doors with solid core door. This must be custom due to 6' ceiling. Also, I am concerned with ventilation of boiler & water heater if I do this. In wall wiring now in the wrong place (now using tower surrounds, not bookshelfs), but I am not snaking cable. I should have used 12 gauge cable anyway.


On the plus side, the room is dark, and with the kiddies two flights up, I can crank my system and not bother any sleepers in the bedrooms.:)
 

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I did. We have low ceilings though, and did not dig out, so in the theater end things are very low. But I am young, and crazy, so I'm mounting my CRT on the ceiling anyway. I think I will cut the legs off any sofa I get to help out on the low height, but it's all good.


We did a full earthquake retrofit, etc, it's a full basement remodel and is very nice. And I get a dedicated no-window theater space. It's officially not livable space, but hey, not gonna waste time cutting in a window to make it official, just to cover it up again!
 

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With a little imagination and considerable thought, you can create a theater

in almost any basement. I had a 33" duct running down the center of my basement to deal with. It drops down 12" from a 8' ceiling. My plan was to

run a wall dividing the space into (2) 12'x24' rooms. One for the wife, and one

for the theater. I was forced to incorporate the duct into my plan. Problem solved, or so I thought. My delema was that I needed a bank of lights on that

side of the theater. And I couldn't use recess because I had zero clearance

in the duct. I couldn't use sconces because that wall was only 7'. I used the

smallest spots I could find. Problems solved. There's a solution to everything.

Believe me, if I can do it, anyone can.
 
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