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Discussion Starter #121
Ok guys, let's talk about acoustic treatments. I walked into my local HVAC supplier and they had some mineral wool panels sitting around. They are 24" x 48" and 2" thick. Can I use these as acoustic panels in front of and behind my speakers?
 

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They'll probably work just fine in that position. Do you know what the density is on them?

Bryan
 

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Discussion Starter #125
Thanks Bryan. I'm sure I'll be posting more questions when the time comes to install the panels.

Ok, onto seating. I'm deliberating over putting a row of 4 seats in the front or keep to just 3. 3 seats means I can center the row more with the screen whereas 4 puts the 4th right up against the wall (either way the 1st 3 seats will still be centered). There is room in the back for one seat as planned. So basically it's either a 5 seat total and occasionally some unlucky soul getting the one on the wall, or it's 4 total and someone always has to sit in the back. Note this is based on my family of 4 but I'm thinking if kids have friends over etc. the more seats the better. Acoustically that 4th seat will be the worst so should I even bother with it? What would you do, sacrifice max occupancy for acoustic reasons or vice versa?
 

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No way to do 3 in the front and 2 in the rear? That would give you the 5 seats and keep everything pretty centered - rear row viewing between the seats in the front row, etc.

Bryan
 

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Discussion Starter #127
Not sure, don't think so. Note there is a desk going in the back of the room and that eats the inches. I would love to put a full row of seats back there but the deal with the missus on getting this built was that I move my computers in there. So with the desk I have I can only fit one chair back there, which kinda sucks really. Maybe I need a smaller desk! :)

Apart from that things are now moving full steam ahead as I got the call from the carpet installers and now they are here! And I also now have my chairs so who knows, maybe I'll get this all connected up tonight! Pics to follow soon!
 

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Discussion Starter #128 (Edited)
Just a quick update. The carpet is in, the screen is up, the chairs are in, the columns are done, the speakers are wired in. And we've watched about 5 or so movies the past few days. And it's awesome! In the end I went with 5 chairs and it works almost perfect if it weren't for the fact the person at the back doesn't get a full recline, but the times I've been in here by myself that's my favorite chair since it's a perfect distance from the screen.

All I have left now is acoustics, cover up of the panel on the wall (see pic below) and various paint touch ups. So I reckon it'll all be done over this long weekend, after which I'll take some better pics. Until then here's just a couple..





I also bought the Inteson PLM (Power Line Modem) and got all my scenes programmed as well as hooking up to my XBMC player, which is totally awesome. By using some 3rd party Insteon unix tools I was able to program it so that when I turn on XBMC it automatically dims the screen lights then when the movie starts the lights dim and when I pause or stop the movie the lights come up. I was able to do all this without the need of purchasing their IRLinc system (which saved me another $99). It works great and everyone loves it! I'll post a video of it in action soon..
 

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That turned out really nice. Now take some time this long weekend and enjoy it.

Bryan
 

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Discussion Starter #133
Thanks all for the comments. The 2 pics I posted don't do it justice. I'll post more over the weekend.

@patchesj - I downloaded a suite of tools called plmtools (link here). All you need to do is put it in your home folder and follow the install instructions. Then get the 6 character reference for your light switches and put them in the configuration file. Then you can simply turn on/off your lights from the unix shell eg. insteon screen on 33 - will turn on your screen lights to 33%, or you can create groups/scenes and turn them on/off that way. Then all you need to do is create a shell script and put in your insteon commands (I called mine lightson.sh and lightsoff.sh) then find the .lircrc file which is usually in your home folder and create an irexec command to execute either of those two scripts whenever a button is pressed on your remote. Easy!! Note that my PLM was a USB model not sure how to do this for the serial version. If you need more detailed instructions shoot me a PM.

Cheers.
 

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Discussion Starter #134
Quick question on acoustics: I ran the First Reflection tool with my room and speaker dimensions added and it looks like the front panels need to be mounted about a foot from the front columns. Does that sound right, or should I just put the panels as close to the columns as possible? Also do I really need to put panels all along the side walls as shown in the diagram below? I was hoping to put a poster in between the sconces on each side but that won't work if I need to make the wall all acoustic panels.

 

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Ideally, yes, you'd cover all of those areas to catch all of the reflections from the front 3 speakers to all of the seats properly. On the ceiling, it's your call but having the center above the screen, it would be good to have a panel that's pretty close to the center (not necessarily at the reflection points) to address SBIR.

Also, don't forget the broadband bass absorption and the deadening of the front wall. Front wall is to prevent reflections from the surrounds contaminating the front soundstage.

Bryan
 

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Discussion Starter #136
Thanks Byran. I do intend to cover the inside columns and back wall with the 2" mineral wool I just purchased (perhaps even 4" around the sub?). One more question, do you think it's vital to have a panel or two on the rear wall also? I only have one seat back there.

Cheers.
 

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Panels on the rear wall behind the seating should be thicker as their primary goal is to provide help in mitigating problems with bass cancellations off that rear surface. I generally use something with a facing on it so as not to kill the spaciousness of the surround field.

2" on the front wall behind the speakers will be fine for those duties.

Bryan
 

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Just a thought about the desk for the office space... have you thought about getting a wall mount bracket for your monitor so you can possibly get a smaller desk? Not sure how much working room you need on the desktop, but it is a thought. For my office desk area, I have a laptop with a second monitor attached to allow my desktop to be larger for opening 2 windows simultaneously. I wall mounted the second screen just above the screen of the laptop since I don't have much room to the side of it.

If you were able to do this with your monitor, you may be able to get a desk that is just a little smaller to allow for another chair on the back row.
 
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