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Discussion Starter #1
Long time lurker for over 6 years now and I finally get to create a thread to document my theater and bar build. We built our house 5 years ago and are finally getting to finish off our basement. When we designed this house I had a plan which included an area for the theater, an area for the bar and my workshop, all of which I think of as my "essentials" for a basement. Thanks to support beams and the electric panel having to go in where the screen is supposed to be, I am a little limited on some set-up options, especially limited by a throw distance to the screen of only around 12 - 13 feet.

We are naming the theater the Three Dane Theater as a reflection of past, present and future. The past is for our first Dane "Boozer" we lost back in May, the present is for our 2 y/o Dane "Zoey", and the future is for our 6 month old (95 lb) monster puppy "Ovi". I figured like naming boats it's good luck to name the theater and give it something with meaning right? :) The bar will have a huge Thin Blue Line American Flag wall dubbing it the Blue Line Bar.

Enough of my personal babbling, the details of the build: The theater will be 12'5" x 20'7" with 8.5' ceilings. The bar will be behind the theater with a large pass-through opening so that the screen can be seen from the bar. I know this probably is a horrible idea for the sake of sound quality, but we like to entertain a lot and we wanted the theater to flow with the bar while the bar flows with the rest of the open concept entertaining area in the basement. It's just me and my wife, no kids so I am not worrying about sound proofing the theater or basement, but I do want good acoustics in the theater (don't we all). I have been reading a lot and watching as many videos as I can on acoustics and trying to learn from all the amazing acousticians out there. I've also posted on another thread and got some tips from Jeff regarding the pass-though opening and ideas to help with reflection points.

I know I probably put the cart before the horse, but I already have my seats thanks to a great deal from fellow member @AnnapolisSony and a couple more add-ons from Roman. So the seating will be two rows of 3 Fusion Jive's in the espresso leather.
I am putting in a 120" 16.9 screen. The room will be mostly hockey and Netflix shows with some football, a little gaming and a movie here and there. The screen will be an AT screen with about 30" behind it for the speakers and sub. I just have to make it so that I can easily access the breaker panels that are behind it. Already looking at using gas struts to make it easy to raise up out of the way if that will work.

I want to do 7.1.4, I am still trying to read up and understand Atmos a little better so I can figure out how to best place the in-ceiling speakers. Unfortunately due to duct work running through the back of the theater I have a short ceiling in the back and tall ceilings in the front. Not sure if Atmos can be at different heights.

I have included my designs for the space (first time attempting sketchup), along with a few pictures of the basement. We actually started this past weekend with the framing. My brother and I will be doing everything but the sheet rock. I promised the wife we would be done by March, I just didn't say which year...

Equipment:
Denon 4400
HSU VTF-3 MK5
Front 3: HTM 10's (not ordered yet)
Surrounds: Volt 8
Ceiling: (4) Monoprice Amber in-ceiling 8"
Projector: TBD
Seats: 6 Fusion Jive

I am looking forward to all the amazing feedback from everyone out there. I am good at building stuff but an absolute newb when it comes to the science part of the home theater. Hopefully the vast wealth of knowledge will help me out and guide me in the right direction in those areas I am still quite clueless in....

Lastly, thank you to all the members out there that have given me so much inspiration and some great ideas to incorporate into my build.
 

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Congrats on getting to this stage @beerhound34 - HOW EXCITING. I am going to be following along for the entire ride - that is for sure! I am a ways behind you...still playing around with dimensions and the layout of the rest of my basement at this time. I think I mentioned this to you before but my ceiling joists are much lower than what you are dealing with so I am a bit limited in some areas. I need to move some lally columns as well so I need to bring in a structural engineer to figure out what my options are! :eek:

Have fun man...

And BTW, love the name of the theater room...very original...
 

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Discussion Starter #4 (Edited)
Haven't had much free time the past couple of weeks, but I did get to work on my rack a little this weekend. I got a Tel Com rack off of Craigslist for a couple bucks but it isn't a 19" rack, more like a 25" rack. After some 12u rails, some MDF and additional rack shelves, I now have a huge rack cabinet with plenty of room to add more toys!!
 

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Good job on starting with a layout and drawings. Very helpful getting everything down on paper.. much easier to change on paper than in construction.
I like the overall concept. :)


Yeah... telecom racks are consider 23" racks vs the 19" racks that typical server/normal ... I like the extra space in the rack.. definitely would make it allot easier for hookup.

12-13' is going to be interesting for throw distance. It will definitely shrink the screen. Double check at Projector Central and the throw distance calculator they provide. It will come in handy for you to make sure you can make it all come together on a 120" 16.9 screen

One thing I noticed, and took the liberty to illustrate a little bit.. Double check your angles for speaker placement based on MLP location. You may need to re-think the column locations or spacing to make it fall more inline with Dolby guidelines.

Good luck on the build.. Looking forward to the end product.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
I've been neglecting my build thread the past few weeks, shame on me.... I got moved to Midnight Shift a few weeks ago which has had a bit of an impact on my "free time" in which I can run power tools and equipment in the basement. None the less progress is still being made and I will try to get some photos up this weekend as I am almost done with all the plumbing and electrical for the theater, bar and the rest of the basement.
@sirjaymz, I am so glad you posted the above post, that is awesome info and was the exact reason I was coming on here. Me and angles don't get along too well, they have always outsmarted me.... I am running speaker wires on Friday and am trying to pin point where exactly I should put my speakers. I have made a few changes from the first layout I had created. Unfortunately the column beside the front row really can't move as it's needed to hide plumbing (the blue circle). I did shorten the riser a little to move the front row back a few inches. So now my side surrounds are just slightly behind the potential head area for those in the front row.

I've read so many posts over the past two weeks and the opinions are all over the place as far as having side surround speakers slightly in front of the front row or slightly behind the front row (especially if you have two rows). Frankly I feel more confused now than when I started. I would love some feedback, especially from those that have two rows as to what works better or is it just a personal preference. Below is the new Sketchup, purple are my speakers, the orange are the lights going in. The Atmos speakers will be in the soffit so they will be a bit closer to the ears than what is probably ideal. I know my seat won't be exactly centered in the theater but it should be close.
 

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Man I wish I lived closer to you. I'd love to be able to see it progress as it unfolds. I could learn so much - especially as I am in planning mode at this juncture.

If I decide to go with a dedicated HT in my space, dimensions are looking like 15.5' W X 25.3' L. My real issue is that I'm working with joists that are only 7'7" above slab so my finished ceiling will much lower than I'd like (which likely will take a riser for back row seating out of play). I'll also have to box out a beam and some ductwork and those areas will be even lower (< 7').

I am generating a list of questions and things to research on my end before I commit to doing a dedicated HT. Stage, distance behind AT screen, what speakers to use, gear budget, typical soffit dimensions, etc. Zillion things on that list so still in very preliminary stages over here.:confused:
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Man I wish I lived closer to you. I'd love to be able to see it progress as it unfolds. I could learn so much - especially as I am in planning mode at this juncture.

If I decide to go with a dedicated HT in my space, dimensions are looking like 15.5' W X 25.3' L. My real issue is that I'm working with joists that are only 7'7" above slab so my finished ceiling will much lower than I'd like (which likely will take a riser for back row seating out of play). I'll also have to box out a beam and some ductwork and those areas will be even lower (< 7').

I am generating a list of questions and things to research on my end before I commit to doing a dedicated HT. Stage, distance behind AT screen, what speakers to use, gear budget, typical soffit dimensions, etc. Zillion things on that list so still in very preliminary stages over here.:confused:
My support beams and some of the plumbing put the soffits at around that 7' 7" mark. The rest of the basement is close to 9' in height. That 7'7" isn't that bad of a height until you start trying to factor in a riser. My buddy from my hockey team who is 6'8" might have a little trouble in the back row...

Anytime you find yourself down near Charlottesville give me a holler, there is always cold beer here! My sheet rock guy is coming by in the morning to look at the project, once the sheet rock is in this project should start flying. I am hoping to be done before the NHL playoffs start, I need to watch the Caps go back to back on the big screen!
 

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My support beams and some of the plumbing put the soffits at around that 7' 7" mark. The rest of the basement is close to 9' in height. That 7'7" isn't that bad of a height until you start trying to factor in a riser.
Funny you mention that. Late last night I accidentally stumbled upon this thread for Rialto seating which offers a "riserless" seating alternative that varies height for front, middle and back row. Interesting concept but honestly I worry about the quality. Obviously I am a big fan of Roman's Fusion line - I just wish he had an option like this for adjusted-height seating (or maybe he does and I just don't know about it).

BTW, I am very curious about your HTM-10's (DIYSG). It is something that I've never considered up until yesterday when I studied their website. Floored that those things could potentially not need an amp and can be run solely on AVR power. :eek: I will send you a PM at some point soon so I do not derail your thread about my build. :)
 

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BTW, I am very curious about your HTM-10's (DIYSG). It is something that I've never considered up until yesterday when I studied their website. Floored that those things could potentially not need an amp and can be run solely on AVR power. :eek: I will send you a PM at some point soon so I do not derail your thread about my build. :)

As am I. In the planning stage and am trying to figure how to get good sound reproduction for HT and Music w/o breaking the bank. Why did you choose the DIYSG option over commercial available speakers?



Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
 

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As am I. In the planning stage and am trying to figure how to get good sound reproduction for HT and Music w/o breaking the bank. Why did you choose the DIYSG option over commercial available speakers?



Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
Regarding the questions about the HTM's, I spend a lot of time lurking and reading on this forum (probably more time than I should admit). And over the past 6 years that I've been "lurking", time and time again the speakers from DIY Sound Group get rave reviews. To me, the reviews, the handling range of those speakers along with the fact that they are used by so many on this forum, solidified my selection of the HTM's for the the front and Volts for the sides. I also like the fact that it's a speaker system I can build myself.

While I've gone back and forth on MANY things regarding this build, the HTM's have been on my wish list for this since the very beginning. I can't wait to get them ordered and built, hopefully very soon!
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Update with pictures:

It still isn't in to the fun stuff yet, but I have the sheet rock people coming in 11 days, it will start to take shape after that. Past couple of weekends were spent finishing up all the soffit work around the basement, plumbing and running a whole lot of wiring.... I'm hoping to have roxul put in this weekend. Here's how it's looking so far.


lot's of speaker wire and CAT6 piled up...


The future home of the projector!


Looking back towards the bar and theater entry
 

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I'm using the Monoprice Amber 8" in ceiling speakers for my Atmos . After opening them up they seemed a little too heavy to me to just cut a hole in the sheet rock and hope the sheet rock holds them (These are nice beefy speakers). I decided to use 1/2" MDF to make face plates for them but now I am wondering if I should go ahead and just box them in? All of my in-ceiling speakers through out my house are not boxed in and they sound great. I guess I have a week to contemplate this. On a side note, all of you out there that are knocking out great perfect circle cuts with a skill saw, you are my new heroes. That task is not an easy one, guess I need to look into getting a jig for my router if I have to cut anymore.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
Yesterday was a fun day of Roxul installation. I installed about 15 bags hitting every wall and ceiling joist space in the theater as well as above the bar ceiling. I know there are hundreds of posts about how great of a product this is, but wow, experiencing it for yourself is something else. Even with the big opening in the back of my theater the room still sounds dead. My brother who is the construction guru and helping me with this project stopped by to check the room out and was amazing at how dampened everything was.
Since I am not doing double drywall I figured roxul would be pretty important. I am now wondering if i still need to do something for the soffits even though the ceiling above it and the walls to the side are stuffed with roxul. I am installing 4" non-IC eyeball lights that Jeff had recommended in several posts so I am hesitant on packing pink stuff near where those will be installed at.



 

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I've been neglecting my build thread the past few weeks, shame on me.... I got moved to Midnight Shift a few weeks ago which has had a bit of an impact on my "free time" in which I can run power tools and equipment in the basement. None the less progress is still being made and I will try to get some photos up this weekend as I am almost done with all the plumbing and electrical for the theater, bar and the rest of the basement.

@sirjaymz , I am so glad you posted the above post, that is awesome info and was the exact reason I was coming on here. Me and angles don't get along too well, they have always outsmarted me.... I am running speaker wires on Friday and am trying to pin point where exactly I should put my speakers. I have made a few changes from the first layout I had created. Unfortunately the column beside the front row really can't move as it's needed to hide plumbing (the blue circle). I did shorten the riser a little to move the front row back a few inches. So now my side surrounds are just slightly behind the potential head area for those in the front row.

I've read so many posts over the past two weeks and the opinions are all over the place as far as having side surround speakers slightly in front of the front row or slightly behind the front row (especially if you have two rows). Frankly I feel more confused now than when I started. I would love some feedback, especially from those that have two rows as to what works better or is it just a personal preference. Below is the new Sketchup, purple are my speakers, the orange are the lights going in. The Atmos speakers will be in the soffit so they will be a bit closer to the ears than what is probably ideal. I know my seat won't be exactly centered in the theater but it should be close.

I'll be doing a similar setup in the near future so I'm curious to what you go with for the speaker placement and your personal feedback. My thoughts were to put the surround speakers just behind the first row so the second row does get some effect while the MLP will still get the better effect.


As for the Atmos placement, I am curious to your feedback on these as well. Going back to the MLP, there will primarily be 2-4 people watching movies at any given time with the second row only being used one certain occasions. So ideally I would like to place the 4 Atmos speakers with that in mind and similar to the Dolby recommended placement for the MLP. That is 2 in front and 2 behind the MLP. However, if you feel that there are good results from your proposed locations I may change my thought process on this. For example, how well do you hear the movement from rear to front in the front row with your proposed design?



Nevertheless, I'll be following closely and see what you end up coming up with! I'll be living vicariously through your build.
 
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I'll be doing a similar setup in the near future so I'm curious to what you go with for the speaker placement and your personal feedback. My thoughts were to put the surround speakers just behind the first row so the second row does get some effect while the MLP will still get the better effect.


As for the Atmos placement, I am curious to your feedback on these as well. Going back to the MLP, there will primarily be 2-4 people watching movies at any given time with the second row only being used one certain occasions. So ideally I would like to place the 4 Atmos speakers with that in mind and similar to the Dolby recommended placement for the MLP. That is 2 in front and 2 behind the MLP. However, if you feel that there are good results from your proposed locations I may change my thought process on this. For example, how well do you hear the movement from rear to front in the front row with your proposed design?



Nevertheless, I'll be following closely and see what you end up coming up with! I'll be living vicariously through your build.
I appreciate the follow! I am not the most well versed in the physics of absolute perfect speaker placement, I am just going on what I have been able to learn on this forum. With the amount of entertaining we do and the fact we are putting in a front row love seat and a back row love seat for our his and her's Great Danes, I thought it would be important to ensure the back row has a decent sound stage (just in case I get kicked out of the front row). I am also having to deal with the fact I am a little limited as to exactly where I can put speakers due to the big support beam running across the back area of the theater and duct work.
I will definitely keep you updated as to how it sounds. I hope to have everything in place and operational for the Game of Thrones season opener, I have to get busy to hit that though!
 

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The sheet rock has begun! This is the only part of the project that my brother and I are not doing. And frankly why would I when my brother's wife got me a major hook up with one of her contractors that is doing the work for about the same as what it would cost me just to buy the materials from one of the big box stores! AND he is giving me a pool table out of one of his houses he is getting ready to renovate, even having his guys deliver it whenever I am ready for it.

The only part that sucks about contractor work is having to work midnight shift and trying to sleep through the day with them hanging sheetrock right under you... Oh well, the sacrifices we make for our theater, I think its a fair enough trade off though!

Here's day 1 progress for sheetrock:

Looking towards the screen wall


Looking towards the back of the theater


Looking from the bar into the theater front wall through the pass-through


From the bar back into the main basement gaming area
 

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I have a question, and this might just be me misunderstanding your diagram... how are you framing the screen wall at the point where it angles out to meet the side walls (red circles below)? It just jumped out at me that if you put a stud there it would be right in front of your L & R speakers.
 

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I have a question, and this might just be me misunderstanding your diagram... how are you framing the screen wall at the point where it angles out to meet the side walls (red circles below)? It just jumped out at me that if you put a stud there it would be right in front of your L & R speakers.
Great question Mumbles and to be honest with you that's gonna be something I am going to have to work on once I start building the screen wall. The black panels that are at an angle are going to be hinged panels. With where my service panels are and where my rack is, I want those corners to be acoustic transparent fabric on some type of frame that I can open up and then raise the screen with hydraulic struts to access the back corners. My goal is to try and build a framing system that borders around the speakers but yet strong enough to keep the fabric secure without having any framing sitting in front of where the speakers are. Worse case scenario I might have to move my speakers to be closer to the center and behind the screen.
 
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