Pretty much everything, I'd have to say.
But before discussing his HT, a bit about the host.
Luca Lusardi, known to us as "Propeller_beach" is a Renaissance
Man. Amongst his talents, he is a university-trained devotee of theoretical mathematics, a master homebuilder, a commercial contractor, and a very talented chef. He is also a skilled craftsman. An artisan. Yet, depite his accomplishments, he is a modest and gracious man. His manner is soft-spoken and charming.
One can tell that he enjoys the quality things in life. The journey as well as the goal. He is fun to talk to.
I am happy to have found a new friend like Luca.
My wife and I had a very enjoyable evening last night. He cooked us a gourmet Italian dinner, plied us with wine and then presented Gladiator in HDTV in his custom designed DILA hometheater.
It is one of the nicest rooms I've seen. It's not large but it is carefully designed. The pictures posted simply do not do justice to the beauty of this room.
The fit and finish is impeccable. The color scheme of the wall panels, moulding is a handsome combination red stain wood and blonde trim. The ceiling is pattern of matte black tiles with a classic pattern. Nested into the ceiling tiles are two rows of brass bullet-style spots, running the lenth of the room. somewhat like the landing lights on each side of a runway. Flanking the sides of the room are several pairs of cylindrical shaped frosted glass sconces. The lights are set for varying levels controlled by a handheld remote.
You walk into the room by stepping down stairs into the front. The stage is on your right. The screen is bordered by a black with gold trim curtain. The room is fairly small making the 100 inch wide screen loom large. The seating section rises from the front on two terraces of 12 inch risers, giving the feel of stadium seating. The projector is mounted in a hushbox on the rear wall and the equipment closet is in the back sidewall on the top riser. You can not see any speakers or equipment. The screen is a Stewart grayhawk with microperf. Everything is hidden, no distractions.
The seating is my idea of comfort. Large, plush, leather recliners that go virtually horizontal.
The best way I can describe feeling when you are in this theater is that of a sitting inside of a custom-fitted, luxurious stretch limousine.
The walls have alcoves with the luxuriant red wood panels and lower fabric covered panels in the Erskine-recommended acoustic layout. My wife loved the carpet which sported a deep blue backround with a cheery cinema-style pattern.
I've visited several hometheaters in the past, mostly CRT. Most screens were smaller than 92 inches wide.
My purpose in visiting Luca's "screening room" was to finally get to see what a properly configured DILA hometheater was like. I've seen DILA at shows. In fact I started this forum two years ago when I told Alan how excited I was about HDTV on JVC-Hughe's demo at Infocomm.
Well many of you can't imagine what a custom designed hometheater HDTV presentation looks like using DILA. Now I can understand why Mark Hunter soiled himself when he finally discovered what HDTV looked like. It is simply awesome.
What impressed me the most was the razor-sharp resolution and depth-of-field in the focus. The tiny wrinkling in Maximus' leather vest. Skin textures were amazing. CRT may have blacks but DILA has incredible detail.
The grayhawk screen combination gave the blacks a good representation. The dark scenes were slightly washed-out but the outdoor contrasts were punchy and the blacks looked black.
The audio was seamless in 5.1 and the entire effect involving and very engaging.
Luca is now into the custom hometheater business. He is passionate about it and loves the process.
He has a mobile crew and can travel to remote venues. Much like the classic restoration artisans who were commissione during the Rennaisance he is an modern artisan able to construct your "cinema chapel".
I would not hesitate to have him build my next hometheater
Thanks for the experience, Luca.
[This message has been edited by Laurence (edited 06-23-2001).]