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19 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I just joined the forum tonight, but as I mentioned in my intro thread the reason I joined is to get advise on my new home theater build...I am starting from scratch and I know absolutely nothing other than, this is something that I want to do...The area is located above my back garage, it is totally unfinished and uninsulated. There is a double window at one end, it is 31 feet long X 24 feet wid approximately. The ceilings are high and I have an idea of using that to my advantage to construct vaulted ceilings with wood beams...the ceiling is approximately 12 feet from the floor. With that in mind...here come the questions...

-type of projector
-size and type of screen (I want to install and electric one that is recessed in the ceiling)
-other components such as audio, video, receivers, amp and...
-types of lighting
-number and type of speakers
-any other considerations

I know many of the questions posed are personal preference, however, I want quality products that are rated for not only dependability, but, simplicity...Please wish me luck on my great endeavor....:eek:

19 Posts
Discussion Starter · #4 ·
In addition to the considerations you put, Bryan's questions are certainly pertinent.

Since you are making a dedicated room in an unfinished space, you are in the catbird seat to produce a great result. However doing so probably requires more work and considerations than you have thought of so far:
-Sound isolation: how much do you want to keep the outside out, and how much do you need to keep the inside in?
-HVAC: what does the current HVAC to the area look like / what can you put in? Remember that a projector, audio gear, and a bunch of bodies make quite a bit of heat that you will need to rid the room of for it to remain comfortable. Also, how will you ensure that the HVAC system is quiet enough so that you can hear all the details in films without turning it up to ear-damaging levels?
-Other acoustics: the construction of the walls (generally for sound isolation) determines, to some extent, the low frequency acoustics in the space. If you want to take advantage of this, you will either need a very smart, studied friend or a pro.
-Shape of screen: do you want a constant image height setup, or to just match the (likely 16:9) shape of your projector's image and call it done?
-Do you want a false wall to mount the screen on?
-Do you want the speakers to be out in the room (visible), hidden, or in-wall?
-Are you a fan of the Oxford comma?
-What overall look do you want? Modern? French provincial? College student? Klingon battle cruise bridge?

These are things that determine how you build the structure of the space, which is not as changeable later as your projector, audio gear, "acoustic treatments" if you use them (which will be more part of the room and no one will ever know they are there, if a good pro tells you what to build), and furniture.

The budget question is also because a bigger budget makes it even more profitable to hire a good quality pro to design the theatre for you. If you don't intend to hire a pro, you would be well advised to spend at least a month using all your free time to read theatre build threads here and at AVSforum. Also make sure to review the "what I would do differently next time" if this is your first theatre build. Many who have built a theatre have a valuable insight into what they didn't realize initially (which is usually a lot).

31x24x12 is a dream space for me. The 12 foot ceiling part, especially, puts you at great advantage and gives you the possibility of having a simply awesome theatre if done well.
All I can say is "wow"....John. Thank you for all of the considerations that you have offered to me. I knew that there was more to consider, but, no idea there were so many..I guess I can answer what I know and maybe you can give me further advice...

-I want to retain the best possible sound quality. The room is totally unfinished. No insulation...no flooring. we are going to frame it after I get all of my thoughts together. My question would be what type of insulation is best to keep the sound in and the outdoors out.

-The HVAC question is another one I can answer. There is absolutely no air condition and my plan was to mount a window unit to cool the theater in the summer and an electric heater in the winter. Will this suffice?

-Other acoustics...the only "well studied friends" that I know, are all of you here. What would be the optimum acoustics I could construct to make this an awesome theater.

-Screen size- I think 16:1 will do, unless there is an advantage to having and adjustable set up and it is simple.

-I like the idea of a false wall with a motorized screen stored in the recess of the ceiling surrounded by some curtains to give it the "theater" look as opposed to the "TV room look"

-I would like to have my speakers either in wall or exposed...I just have no idea how to determine the number of speakers and subs. Nor do I have any idea how to determine the amp outputs to give me the volume level I need.

-The overall look that I am shooting for is another simple one...I was a paratrooper for 20 years and I love, absolutely love war movies...from WW2 to modern and ...Any suggestions.

Well may budget is not low, neither is it infinite...I have 2 friends at my beckoning that can help one is a general contractor and the other an electrician and another who is a retired machinist and very intelligent man, he is a jack of all trades and master of none...and me, well just like in the army, I guess I am the grunt. As far as the other info I can offer...the furniture I have in mind is sectional sofas and a bar with stools in the rear as opposed to theater chair. Of course I will put the seating on risers.

Thanks in advance for you answers and advice....:doh:
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