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Discussion Starter · #21 ·
The following weekend (first weekend of February) I decided to paint the front wall. I had been planning on doing a dark grey color - but in a shocking turn of events my wife (who has consistently complained that she doesn't want me to make the room TOO DARK) said "Shouldn't you just make it black?" I immediately went to Home Depot and bought a can of Mouse Ears black in eggshell finish!

I ended up spray painting the outlets with several coats of flat black paint after finding out that a brush does not cover them well...


I patched (poorly) the hole where my previous speaker distribution panel was, and gave the front wall the first coat of paint...


Lets just say that if you want BLACK - Mouse Ears is about as black as you can get! Holy ! LOL!

Note the white panel still on the wall - I got lazy... I didn't move the TV earlier when I had the spray paint out - so that panel didn't get painted. I decided to just paint around it. It will never be seen anyway - and if it ends up bothering me I can take some spray paint to it then.

...I ended up doing a second coat the next day because I was seeing quite a few small white specks showing through.

Quick shot of my spray painted outlet covers:


The room with the lights on full - looks dark because the camera set the exposure for the TV... but you get the idea:

You can see I also painted the door to the closet.

Lights dimmed a bit...


.... note that my "behind the TV bias light" no longer illuminates the wall AT ALL... that Mouse Ears paint just sucks up all the light... so I ended up removing it from the setup.
 

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Discussion Starter · #22 ·
I also did some playing around and made myself this little poster displaying the logos of all the equipment in the room:


It now hangs above my light switch panel:


Here is a recent shot of the entire room:


...and that pretty much brings us up to date.

I now have everything controlled via RF using my Harmony 1100 - and I have used a little "work around" to make it so I can program macro-like functions... so here is just a little clip demonstrating how I have it set up:
 

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Discussion Starter · #23 ·
Things left on the short term "To Do" list:

1) Remove the mirrors from the left wall of the movie room and patch or replace the drywall.
2) Paint the side walls of the movie room "Sorcerer's Hat" blue.
3) Start the project to rebuild the bar!


I am looking at options to get the mirrors down - and I've come to the conclusion that I probably can't remove them without destroying either the mirrors, the drywall, or both. They are held in place with quite a bit of construction adhesive - so I thought I might be able to use a wire to saw through, but I can just see that going wrong in so many ways! I'm basically stalling on this part of the project and hoping a better idea comes to me. :huh:

The bar rebuild project is really exciting - and we should have had it done by now, but we had to take an "emergency" trip to Las Vegas and used the money we had set aside for the bar project. :duh:

The bar project consists of: Removing the current bar top and adding 6-7" to the top of the current bar with drawers on the back side. We will be making a new bar top that is shaped slightly differently to get rid of the extra "lip" that sticks out the right hand side. The bar top will be covered in wood flooring and a layer of clear epoxy with "bar rail" around the edges. The "front" is going to be re-faced with wood and we are debating exactly how that will be done. It may be done with flooring like the bartop, or it may be just plain wood with some molding pieces used to create a design.

Anyway - there you have it! Up to date... so lets hear some comments!!
 

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Aaron,

I really like what you have done with you basement. It is really a big step up from what the previous owner left behind.

Out of the box suggestion 1 for the mirror wall: Chalkboard paint. As crazy as this sounds, you could paint over the mirror and create a flat black surface. The new wall would be customizable for artwork, menus, fun for children. You could still get some of the 3M smooth surface adhesive hooks and hank your framed posters. The paint is relatively cheap and if you don't like the results, you can cover it back up until you decide on a new path.

Out of the box suggestion 2 for the mirror wall: use the same construction adhesive to attach sheets of plywood or mdf or drywall or layers. You can then paint, frame columns or hang items. I am not sure how much space you are trying to maintain.

This suggestions maybe be crazy and infeasible, but might get your creative juices flowing.
 

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Discussion Starter · #25 ·
Aaron,

I really like what you have done with you basement. It is really a big step up from what the previous owner left behind.

Out of the box suggestion 1 for the mirror wall: Chalkboard paint. As crazy as this sounds, you could paint over the mirror and create a flat black surface. The new wall would be customizable for artwork, menus, fun for children. You could still get some of the 3M smooth surface adhesive hooks and hank your framed posters. The paint is relatively cheap and if you don't like the results, you can cover it back up until you decide on a new path.

Out of the box suggestion 2 for the mirror wall: use the same construction adhesive to attach sheets of plywood or mdf or drywall or layers. You can then paint, frame columns or hang items. I am not sure how much space you are trying to maintain.

This suggestions maybe be crazy and infeasible, but might get your creative juices flowing.
Thanks for the comments and ideas!

I like the second suggestion the best - that would hide the mirrors and still give me a flat wall that I could paint... hmm... :ponder:

The "safest" solution I have heard previously was cutting the drywall around the mirrors and trying to remove the mirror+drywall as one unit - but then that involves replacing whole sections of drywall... and I'm not sure I have the skill to do that well. :(
 

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Another random thing I have seen in the past, if your wife buys in on it, is to use a firm roller and paint the ceiling tiles black. The firm roller does not all the paint to fill the textured areas of the tiles and creates an effect of stars in the sky. You could try it on an extra tile and see if you like it. This might be the way to go if you ever decide to use a projector and don't want the white or reflective surfaces of drop ceiling.
 

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Discussion Starter · #27 ·
Another random thing I have seen in the past, if your wife buys in on it, is to use a firm roller and paint the ceiling tiles black. The firm roller does not all the paint to fill the textured areas of the tiles and creates an effect of stars in the sky. You could try it on an extra tile and see if you like it. This might be the way to go if you ever decide to use a projector and don't want the white or reflective surfaces of drop ceiling.
I like that idea, I had considered painting the frame/rails of the drop ceiling black just because I think it would look pretty cool - and I had also considered blacking out the first 2 rows of tiles when I was still planning to use my bias light since it was annoying reflecting off the white tiles.

I have 2 spare cracked tiles sitting around, maybe I'll give that a try :T
 

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Aaron,

Amazing transformation - thanks for sharing all that! :T

As far as the mirrors, are they at first reflection points? Maybe what you could do is make custom acoustic panels, put furring strips around the mirrors and mount your panels over the top of the mirrors. This would solve your mirror problem as well as starting room treatment.

Just a thought.....
 

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I agree, great progression. Nice........:T
 

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Discussion Starter · #30 ·
Aaron,

Amazing transformation - thanks for sharing all that! :T

As far as the mirrors, are they at first reflection points? Maybe what you could do is make custom acoustic panels, put furring strips around the mirrors and mount your panels over the top of the mirrors. This would solve your mirror problem as well as starting room treatment.

Just a thought.....
Thank you very much!

That was another idea I had been tossing around... The mirrors are approximately 5' high and total 16' in length - so I'm sure that making them into a giant acoustic panel would definitely cover first reflection points on the left wall!

I wasn't sure if that would throw things off since I won' t be able to duplicate it on the opposite wall?
 

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Discussion Starter · #31 ·
I agree, great progression. Nice........:T
Thank you very much!
It is hard to remember how much it has changed until I go back and look at the old pictures... just because it happens so slowly. It was fun to post this up and see it again.

For me the movie area finally looked like a "movie room" when I got all of the equipment out of the front of the room. Before that it just looked like a living room to me.
I'm really happy with the progress so far, and the reactions we get from friends and family when they come over always make me smile :D
 

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Thank you very much!

That was another idea I had been tossing around... The mirrors are approximately 5' high and total 16' in length - so I'm sure that making them into a giant acoustic panel would definitely cover first reflection points on the left wall!

I wasn't sure if that would throw things off since I won' t be able to duplicate it on the opposite wall?
Hmmm.... it probably would if you were not able to maintain some level of symmetry - scrap that idea! :duh:

I will continue to stir the contents of my addled brain to see if I can come up with anything else..... :ponder:
 

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Aaron,

After a bit more stewing, here are my thoughts:

1. Covering them with MDF might be the same as putting up acoustic panels - wouldn't that throw off the room symmetry unless you cover the entire wall? I am assuming that you would not just cover the face - you would "box" them in.

2. If you are able to get the mirrors off, are you going to be able to remove the adhesive well enough to paint over? I have noticed even with 2 sided tape that has been up awhile that painting that spot always looks different than the rest of the wall.

If it were mine, I think I would base my approach on my plans for how long I was staying in the house - barring unforseen circumstances of course. If I am planning a move in the next 5 years, I think I would continue to cover them as you have and live with it. If this was more of a long term stay, I would probably tackle completely removing the mirrors and drywall and patching it.

Still thinking on this one - but that is what I have so far.......
 

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Discussion Starter · #35 ·
Aaron,

After a bit more stewing, here are my thoughts:

1. Covering them with MDF might be the same as putting up acoustic panels - wouldn't that throw off the room symmetry unless you cover the entire wall? I am assuming that you would not just cover the face - you would "box" them in.

2. If you are able to get the mirrors off, are you going to be able to remove the adhesive well enough to paint over? I have noticed even with 2 sided tape that has been up awhile that painting that spot always looks different than the rest of the wall.

If it were mine, I think I would base my approach on my plans for how long I was staying in the house - barring unforseen circumstances of course. If I am planning a move in the next 5 years, I think I would continue to cover them as you have and live with it. If this was more of a long term stay, I would probably tackle completely removing the mirrors and drywall and patching it.

Still thinking on this one - but that is what I have so far.......
1) I was kind of thinking more in terms of acoustically symmetrical rather than visually. I'm barely a novice at understanding room acoustics, but my thought was doing panels on one side would make for some difficult to control sound?
2) That is the big question I've had in my head... "how bad will it be?" Judging from the size of the blobs of construction adhesive that I can feel (by sliding a wire behind the mirror) - there will be some pretty significant damage to the wall. This is why I've been avoiding it ;) It was actually the first thing I wanted to do when we moved in - but then I realized how much work was going to be involved.
The plan right now is to stay in the house for "a while" - we just spent 4 years trying to sell a condo, and almost a year searching to find this place... so there is very little desire to move again unless we hit the lottery tonight ;)

The more I think about it the more it seems like just biting the bullet and replacing the drywall is the only good option to get the room to look like I want. I can't really afford to lose much width because we need a walkway on the right hand side to get to the closet/mechanical room.

In the perfect world I would be able to move the entrance to those rooms to inside or next to the large closet near the door to the movie room - then I could put in a riser with 2 rows of theater seats, build a stage at the front, and eventually move to a front projection setup!

Long term plan for the movie space is to pull down all the drywall and reinstall it with double drywall and green glue with isolation clips for sound isolation, double drywall/green glue the ceiling with isolation clips, real home theater seating, projector/screen... basically make it a real dedicated room. Right now the whole house shakes when I watch movies :hsd: - so the isolation is definitely in the plans when I can devote more to the budget.
 

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Aaron,

Sometimes, I think I went waaay overboard with detail.... :R Please feel free to comment / poke fun! :bigsmile:

If you have an opportunity, read raZorTT's (Simon) build thread. I warn you, it was over 80 pages as of last count, but it is well worth it. Another one I enjoyed was Moggie's on that other forum... ;) Both of those had some fantastic ideas......

By the way, I was thinking acoustically symmetrical as well - the idea suggested earlier was to cover the mirrors with MDF. I do not think that would work for the same reason as the acoustic panels idea. Hate to say it - but I think re-drywalling might be your best bet / result. :gulp:
 

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Discussion Starter · #38 ·
I love all the detail you put into your thread, I feel like I learned a lot from reading through it! It makes me want to rip out the whole room and start from scratch - but I don't think the wife would go for that! Ha!

I tend to go overboard with pictures ... but I like having a thorough "picture" of my journey ;)

I guess I wasn't completely thinking through the idea of MDF causing a sound difference, but it makes sense that adding a layer of dense wood with an air gap would change the acoustics!
I have zero experience hanging drywall and I am terrible at patching so I will have to really think this through... A good friend of mine is president/owner of one of the more well known home improvement companies around here - I may have to get some estimates!
 

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Discussion Starter · #39 ·
No real updates... added a few new items to the bar area including a Corona neon wall clock...

Re-ran Harman/Kardon's room correction (EZSet/EQ) yesterday, and had some strange results... It is terrible at guessing the distances and even the sub size - but things sound decent. Much better than when I ran it last time. For some reason it set my sub level to -10... which didn't even register on my SPL meter when I manually double checked things. I ended up bringing that up to -4.

I hadn't been using it for the last year because it just didn't sound right...

Ran some sweeps in REW to see just what it was doing to the sound - and it seemed to even out a few of the dips. I don't know if I like it or not - makes music sound like something is missing... maybe I'm just used to hearing "messed up" sound.
 

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Discussion Starter · #40 · (Edited)
Okay... The mirror situation is about to be taken care of!

I talked with my friend that owns the home improvement company to get a quote on having his guys remove the mirrors and replace the drywall - and instead he said "I'll come over this weekend and get the mirrors down and patch the drywall"!! So - looks like the mirrors will FINALLY be gone!!

I'll be picking up 2 gallons of "sorcerer's hat" blue paint too - so the room will be finally "done" for the time being!!
 
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