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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello,

Is it a good idea to have your A/V rack in a separate room from
the theater or should the screen be directly viewable from the A/V rack
so you could make adjustments when needed?

My first thought is to have the A/V rack in a small side room
totally out of sight and sound isolated from the theater.

Then all adjustments and or operations would be carried out
on some type of RF or wired remote system without having
to see the equipment room.

I do not have my A/V equipment yet so this is
more of a generalized best approach question.

Thank you,
Dave.
 

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Other then being more conveniant haveing it in the same room i don't see an issue haveing it located in another area of the house i'm actually quite keen on the idea of not haveing all the equipment in the same room as the theater area.:T
 

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Elite Shackster , HTS Moderator Emeritus
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Many dedicated theaters have a closet or alcove for the gear. Some even put it in a hallway leading in, so as not to clutter up the view with lights.

I prefer the simpler solution: keep the gear in the back. Still no light clutter, and speaker wire is a lot easier and cheaper to run up front than all the data/video lines. Of course, I have a projector, which makes things easier for me. If you have a large TV or flat panel setup, then a custom closet or secondary room might make more sense.

If your gear has fans, then an isolated room is also preferred. Just make sure it gets plenty of ventilation.
 

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Do it all the time on projects, only downsides are increased wire length, inconvenience of swapping removable media and calibration/adjustments aren't as easy due to not having the equipment to connect to in the room.

Positives are less distractions in room due to LEDs, decreased heat/noise in the room, centralized location for distribution and keeps the equipment out of the hands of people who shouldn't be touching it (ie kids) if locked in an equipment room.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Hello,

That all makes sense.

What about the rack components that use direct line of site IR remotes
like most A/V recievers or BluRay players, could all of those be controlled
through a Harmony or some wired remote and still have complete access to all functions?

Thank you,
Dave.
 

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Elite Shackster , HTS Moderator Emeritus
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There are many RF remotes that come with IR repeaters. Another option is an IR repeater system. They are pretty cheap and simple. You usually just have a receiver, a box with power, and then the transmitters that go to each of the components.

Parts Express sells starter kits that have all this pretty cheap, but if you're going to get a nice universal remote, it may come with this functionality anyway.
 

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Most people recommend separate rooms or the rear of the theater or other places to keep the "lights" out of sight.

My equipment rack is built into the left wall of my theater between the seating and the screen. There's lots of things I'd change in my theater that I built 6 years ago, but the placement of the equipment rack is not one of them.

I love it there. I never notice the lights during a movie (unless the movie sucks and my eyes are wandering) and I like the fact that I can glance over and see the volume level, time left in movie and other information if I want. "My seat" happens to be the right center seat and so I have a perfect view of all the equipment when I glance over and can read every display.

It's also extremely convenient to put in a new Blu Ray (it's about 8' total away from my seat)
 

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I've done installs both ways; typically the "hidden" installs land better with in the WAF space
At home all of our rooms have migrated to hidden installs using Xantech for the IR distribution (~$75 for a typical set of components)

keep in mind if you go with a hidden install you will need a solid solution for your remotes; 12 remotes on the coffee table will likely kill the joy if you can't see the components
 

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I'm in the process of building my theater now. When I was pulling wire, a local installer came by and advised me to pull a cable to use an IR sensor. I pulled it to place the sensor on the front wall above the screen position. My equipment will be behind the theater in a separate room. This way people will point the remote at the screen to control whatever is needed. Just what I'm doing in my cave:R.
 

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yep;
you'll want a cat5 (coax also can be used) from the ir sensor position to your component location
no need to worry about power for the sensor as that can come from the component location

you'll also want cat5 from your component location to any devices you want to be controlled by ir
examples being (projectors / powered shades / lights / ceiling fans / projector lifts)
 

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I personally like my equipment conveniently accessible. That being said, loud equipment is annoying (more so than lights) and I would do what I can to move the noisy stuff away from the listening position.

Like others have said, I like being able to look over at my equipment and see time remaining, volume and other data.

I also love my wiring neat and tidy so I will use whatever I can to make that happen.
 

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Regarding equipment location - One thing that has not been mentioned is noise from the AVR relays. This may not be an issue with many brands, but for Onkyo (I have 3007) it is very loud. I put all my gear in a separate closet to deal with noise, lights, and to enhance security/access. Much of the stuff we control (except CD player) will show status on screen, so direct line of sight is not a concern for me.

Regarding IR - Amazon has an IR repeater system from Cables to Go for $34 including receiver, power/distribution block, and 4 emitters. I got this 6 months ago and tested in my living room (equipment is in cabinet below TV with opaque doors) before relocating to my basement home theater a couple months ago. Works like a charm. I have the receiver behind my shelf-mounted center channel and the signal bounces off the screen down to the emitter. My projector (situated on the back wall) has the IR receiver on the front so I can get the remote's signal to bounce off the screen without using the repeater though I did run some extra Cat5 just in case.
 

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loud equipment is totally a buzz kill

the relays in amps / avr's are naughty
network switch's are getting more and more necessary in the component rack and they seen to always have an offending fan
and don't even get me started on the non slim xbox 360's :)

having the goodies in a different space separated by lexon is getting more and more desireable in my book
 

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loud equipment is totally a buzz kill

the relays in amps / avr's are naughty
network switch's are getting more and more necessary in the component rack and they seen to always have an offending fan
and don't even get me started on the non slim xbox 360's :)

having the goodies in a different space separated by lexon is getting more and more desireable in my book
Speaking of fan noise... my Blu Ray player and cable box both have fans which can be audible. And the Blu Ray player and TiVo DVR have hard drives that are also audible. Not a deal killer, but I'd rather get all of that out of the room.

sga2
 

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I keep my HTPC, receiver, hard drives, PS3, xbox, and wii in the closet next to my screen in the same room. They are too loud. I will be moving the PC and hard drives upstairs in a closet and sending a signal via cat6-HDMI to my receiver. HTPC is controlled through wireless, so don't think I will be running an IR repeater. That being said, I enjoy having my equipment in the same room, there are a lot of things that I find I have to be next to my equipment while looking at the screen. if everything was in another room, especially the receiver, it would be tougher for me.
 

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hakunatata,
what solution are you planning on using for hmdi over cat6? curious as I've played with the monoprice one a bit and had mixed results

after i moved the first room to a (you can't see the equipment when you can see the screen) config I had regrets for about a week; then as I worked out all of the bugs of the setup (all the glitchy things that you need to see the equipment for) seeing the componets became not necessary

now all of our viewing rooms are setup in the hidden config manner and the WAF is very high

i think the bigest part of the high WAF is that having hidden components forces you to have a very solid remote solution
 

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I have those same monoprice units but have not had the time to install them yet. I would be anxious to hear your report of the monoprice product. I just finished running all the lines on sunday. I still have to wire the boxes, but all the cables are run. I ran 4 cat6's to 4 different locations. I know it maybe overkill, but I was just trying to future proof a bit. I figure if the monoprice ones don't work out, that I will be able to eventually find something that will. The main one I will use right away is for my projector, and that run is probably about 30 to 40 ft. so I am hoping that the monoprice plates will be able to handle that.

How are you transferring the signal?

dave
 

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This has been an interesting thread that I have enjoyed reading. It is interesting to read the practical vs. esthetic aspects of equipment rack placement. It gives me food for thought for future upgrades for me.
 
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