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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
I'm a college student moving into a small flat, and I am looking for some advice as to where I should set up my theater. Option one is a small spare bedroom, aprox. 10x13 ft. This room could be a dedicated (albeit tiny) theater room. Everything could be set up symmetrically, walls could be painted dark, outside light could be completely controlled, and it can be easily closed off from the rest of the house. Option two is to set up my theater in the living room, which is aprox. 14x22 ft. Since this is my main living area I wouldn't be as free to place everything exactly where it should go for best sound/viewing. It probably wouldn't be as symmetrical, and and total light control would be impossible.

I have always wanted a dedicated theater room, but I don't know if this room is really big enough to pull it off. It would have all the benefits listed above, but will also have issues with sound because of the small size (especially in the bass department). The living room on the other hand should have better, more uniform sound across the entire seating area (which should be at least 3 seats wide).

Its going to be used 50-50 for HT/Stereo. My LCR's are Paradigm studio 20's, sub is a MFW 15, and my main viewing will be done on a Optoma H31 480p DLP projector (but I have a old CRT TV I can use during the day if need be) Screen size would be anywhere from 70-90". If you were in my situation, where would you set up your theater?

(Moderator: If this isn't the right area for this thread, feel free to relocate it)
 

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The bedroom is a bit small but doable The big issue will be speaker placement as the fronts need to be out of the corner at least 2' or you will have first reflection cancellation issues. That would make the screen on the small size Can you mount the projector from the ceiling?
 

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Discussion Starter #3 (Edited)
Yeah, ceiling mount is no problem. In the bedroom I could even go <70" on the screen since I will be viewing from so close, it would still seem rather large. I am worried about first reflection cancellation and room nodes though, since I will use the room for stereo listening also, the sound is important.

EDIT: after playing around with the projector calculator for a little bit on PC, I realized that 84" screen is as small as I could go with this projector with a 1.0 gain screen and no ambient light. Any smaller than that would be to bright for a dark room and might cause eye strain.
 

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If the room has carpet on the floors and you can place some home made acoustic panels on the walls you'll be fine.
 

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You can mitigate the eyestrain with bias lighting. The Optoma doesn't have an iris you can close down?
 

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I think there's a couple of factors to consider. Since you're a college student, I think you're more likely to watch movies and listen to music with friends. You'll be hard pressed to get more than a few folks in the bedroom HT. The larger space would be better for entertaining. Related to this are your viewing and listening habits. A dedicated HT means you're pretty much just watching or listening. If you want to fix dinner while casually watching a ball game, the living room might work out better.

Finally, since you're a college student, a dedicated HT may be too much of a distraction. You need more time in front of the books and less time in front of the TV!
 

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Discussion Starter #7
The Optoma doesn't have an iris you can close down?
I'm not 100% sure but I don't think so. I think it has two lamp settings, regular and econo, but I don't think there is really much output difference between the two.

I think there's a couple of factors to consider. Since you're a college student, I think you're more likely to watch movies and listen to music with friends. You'll be hard pressed to get more than a few folks in the bedroom HT. The larger space would be better for entertaining. Related to this are your viewing and listening habits. A dedicated HT means you're pretty much just watching or listening. If you want to fix dinner while casually watching a ball game, the living room might work out better.

Finally, since you're a college student, a dedicated HT may be too much of a distraction. You need more time in front of the books and less time in front of the TV!
LOL thanks Dad! No, but really you make some good points. I will say that getting the best possible sound and picture is my number one goal at this point, but functionality and usability are obviously factors as well. There's not much point in setting up a theater in a bedroom IF I am going to end up doing a lot of my viewing on an old CRT in the living room...
 
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