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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have a home theater that's about 25'x16' and there's an office connected to it that you access via a door on the sidewall of the theater close to the screen (so far from the projector). The office houses my receiver, my gaming PC (which I usually leave on) and a server (Plex, OPNSense, and more) among other components.

It's now 90 degrees outside and the office is roasting.

I had been thinking about an in-line fan/ventilation system that serves both rooms with (just Y off the ducts and run them to the in-line), but I'm not sure if this is the best way to go and what kind of fan I want. I also wonder about controlling it. Thermostat? But then do I run a sensor to each room? The office gets hotter than the theater especially when the door is closed and/or when the projector is off. Otherwise they're about the same.

What should I be looking at? There's plenty of room above both room for different options. One HVAC company wanted me to put in a mini-split, but first that's really expensive and second, it's ugly as hell and will only serve the theater when the office door is closed (when the projector is on, for example).

Thanks!
 

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if you install ducts that suck hot air out of the rooms where will replacement air come from?

Food for thought, you can install a ducted mini split keeping the ugly part out of the room and have ducts going and coming from both rooms. Yes it will cost some money.
You could install a regular mini spit with two inside units running off one shared outside compressor.
 

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In the "What I would do differently next time..." thread, ventilation (or lack thereof) is probably the most common item mentioned. I just ran flex-duct off a main line to feed it, and I just happen to have a return vent that I'll tap into, as well. Just need to soundproof them as much as possible...
 

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In the "What I would do differently next time..." thread, ventilation (or lack thereof) is probably the most common item mentioned. I just ran flex-duct off a main line to feed it, and I just happen to have a return vent that I'll tap into, as well. Just need to soundproof them as much as possible...
One thing to remember is your HVAC may not be running when you need it. While I believe you need both I find my dead vents do way more to keep the room comfortable then the HVAC
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
I'm talking with heating and cooling guy about a minisplit, but I do have a return in the theater so air would be readily available. The minisplit he had me looking at before was a major eyesore and I worried about it being noisy as well.
 

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It sounds to me like you either need a 2-zone ducted system, or two mini splits running off a single compressor. The theater and office would each have a dedicated thermostat to control the temperature in that room alone. From what you describe, the office is heating up from the equipment located in there as well as from solar radiation/conduction into the room.

Without separate controls, you would probably overcool the theater and/or undercool the office, depending on where you placed a shared thermostat. Either way, you are wasting energy and not achieving the comfort goals for the two rooms.

Generally, mini splits are considered to be pretty quiet, but I agree with you many of the wall-mount indoor units are butt ugly. Ceiling cassettes, to my eye, are less intrusive than wall units and are readily available from most manufacturers.

You mentioned “...plenty of room above both room...” and by this I take it you are saying you have available attic space for installing HVAC components. Most attics in older homes are an “unconditioned space” meaning that there is no air circulation in the attic through the HVAC system. Although this is where many homes have the equipment and ducting installed, it is one of the least desirable places for installing HVAC equipment from an efficiency standpoint. Think about this: in the summer, your attic is the hottest room in the house, potentially with temperatures 30-50º hotter than the outdoor air. Yet you are running the coolest air in the house through this oven before distributing that air into your rooms for cooling. Doesn’t make much sense, does it. And that skimpy R8 insulation on the ducts isn’t gonna do much good, either.

Mike
 

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I installed a ducted mini-split and 100% satisfied with the performance. It is completely quiet in the theater room in heat or cool mode. I wholeheartedly endorse a ducted mini-split if you can swing the cost. Please check out my build thread for more details on the install.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Nicco, what did yours run you? I don't want to spend $10k, but half that might be okay.
 

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Nicco, what did yours run you? I don't want to spend $10k, but half that might be okay.
I bought the unit myself for around $2200 plus I went ahead and paid to have it all professionally installed that cost another $2500. I would think you could get it done for around $5k or a little less....depending on where you live.
 
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