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The usual new constuction questions...


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#1 of 8 OFFLINE   David Cotton

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Posted August 27 2004 - 09:58 AM

Hello all, new member here. Just wanted to say I am glad I found this place before I really start into my HT build. I have some questions and hope to get some answers from you seasoned guru's out there. I hope you don't mind me re-asking questions that I am sure have been asked thousands of times before. I will have to say I have learned many things from the "Wish I had done this" post...

Fist off, we are having a home built.. It is not a custom home, so changes are expensive and not readily available. On top of that, as with most folks, my funds are very limited...

The room in question is on the first floor of a two story house and has two outside walls. It is approx. 11.5'X16' The ceilings are 10' so there is at least some room to work with. Is this room too small to really make it worth the investment to turn into a HT room?

So far I have the following being done during construction...

1. IG outlets everywhere.
2. Cable, network and power outlets in the ceiling where I hope one day to have a projector.
3. Prewire for 7.1

Due to limited funds I may have to settle for normal construction then add the rest later. I am going to see if I can slip the contractors a few extra bucks to have blown insulation put in the walls and ceiling of this room as well as having the room double sheet-rocked. I know this is far from the best sound isolation plan but I plan eventually to paint or heavy fabric the walls to help. Double studs are out of the question due to price and it not being an option at build time.

I am still a little confused at some of the extras that some people have run and I am also hoping I can get some guidance with respect to speaker placement.

One other post mentioned ceiling height inside the tray and below the tray. Do I assume we are talking a cable tray to be used so pulling wires through walls is not necessary? This could be accomplished with a small wooden shelf running around the room finished off with some moulding of some sort to make it look nice?

Also, I am a bit stumped as to using conduit to run cables. I definitely undertand the concept being a cumputer guy by trade, but where would one hide the conduit? I have read posts pertaining to running conduit right up to the seating area for delivery of gaming accessories and remote control cables etc. Do I assume that this situation requires a raised floor throughout the entire room and not just an elevated stage area?

Anyway here is a link to the floor plan http://www.ryland.co....3,34941,385501

The HT room is what is shown as the living room on the plan, but if you click the study option on the bottom right you can see what it will look like with the optional doors.

Thanks for reading this far and I am eagerly awaiting any replies with suggestions, speaker placement options etc.

Please feel free to PM me or email me directly at David.Cotton@austin.ppdi.com (work) or djcotton@austin.rr.com (home)

Thanks again.

David
Lead me not into temptation, I can find it myself.

#2 of 8 OFFLINE   Adam Gregorich

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Posted August 27 2004 - 07:12 PM

I edited the post to make it a "real" link. Welcome to the Forum David!

#3 of 8 OFFLINE   Wayne A. Pflughaupt

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Posted August 28 2004 - 05:34 AM

David,

Welcome to the Forum!

There’s really no reason not to utilize an 11’ x 16’ room for your home theater. I always say "any surround sound is better than no surround sound." Posted Image

Nevertheless it’s good that you’re making inquiries now about how to get to most from it. To start:
Quote:
IG outlets everywhere.
In residential construction isolated ground outlets (the orange ones) are a waste of money. They are only useful in commercial buildings that have the electrical service run in conduit, with the conduit functioning as ground in situations where they want to isolate the circuit ground from the building ground. Here’s an old post of mine that explains more about them and why you don’t need them at home:

http://www.hometheat....74#post1623974

If you want upgraded outlets, which isn’t a bad idea, heavy-duty industrial grade outlets are about as good as it gets, and they’re half the price of IG’s (or less).

Rather than IG outlets, what you want is dedicated electrical circuits in the HT room, separating your equipment from everything else. One dedicated circuit will be plenty, since your room is small enough that it won’t require high-powered amps. Have enough outlets installed at the equipment location to avoid using cheap power strips. You could also have an outlet installed at the sub location, so you don’t have to drape a power cord across the floor. Another outlet could be installed in the ceiling where you expect to have the projector.

A separate circuit should be used for other non-equipment outlets in the room, and/or the lights. Make sure the dedicated circuit is on the opposite phase from the lights, especially if you intend to use dimmers. And make sure the equipment and light circuits are not serviced together with a single 12/3 run of Romex.
Quote:
I am going to see if I can slip the contractors a few extra bucks to have blown insulation put in the walls and ceiling of this room as well as having the room double sheet-rocked. I know this is far from the best sound isolation plan but I plan eventually to paint or heavy fabric the walls to help. Double studs are out of the question due to price and it not being an option at build time.
Don’t expect a lot from these tactics. Good soundproofing requires as much physical isolation between the room and the rest of the house as possible, and you’ve already ruled out the best method, room-within-a-room construction (although that’s not practical given that your room is so small to begin with).

Of the methods you’re considering, double sheetrock is the best. (The heavy fabric will be good for in-room acoustics – taming reflections and such – but not for soundproofing.) If you’re going double, might as well get the best benefit from it and use 5/8” instead of 1/2” sheetrock. It wouldn’t be needed for the exterior walls, but you could do all the others, including the ceiling. I would also double up on the sheetrock for the other side of the walls shared by the family room and entry.

A cost efficient and effective technique for soundproofing is to make the room airtight. This requires heavy, solid core doors with complete weather stripping all around, including an airtight threshold. However, seeing as your room is off the main entryway, this requirement may not be palatable from an aesthetics standpoint. An airtight room also requires special air conditioning treatment, namely a return duct as well as an inlet duct.

Keep in mind, anything you do in the soundproofing department will only reduce sound transference, not entirely eliminate it. And the further you move from double-walled construction, the less you can expect.

Do a search on this Forum and you might find some useful tips for soundproofing and materials. Here’s a link you can start with:
http://www.hometheat....60#post1856760
Quote:
Also, I am a bit stumped as to using conduit to run cables. I definitely undertand the concept being a cumputer guy by trade, but where would one hide the conduit?
I really don’t think conduit is viable given the way they construct homes here in Texas. For one, the sizes people talk about using, typically 1-2”, I can’t see where any contractor in his right mind would allow holes that big drilled into 2 x 4’s. It’s a serious compromise to the structural integrity of the board.

In addition, for conduit to be viable it pretty much has to be a straight run between points A and B. If not, you have to have physical access to every point that there is a 90-degree turn - not very likely in a two-story house.

Judging from the elevations and floor plans at the link, the only location where you could do a straight-shot conduit run all the way to the attic would be on the front wall where the window is. It makes more sense to me just to make sure you get everything you need run in advance, and perhaps plan ahead. In a two-story house it’s cheaper to run wire now, even if you never use it, than to retro later.

To that end I would suggest a total of five RG-6 coaxial runs to the equipment location from the attic: Two for satellite, one for a TV antenna, one for an FM antenna, and one spare. I would also run a phone line for satellite.

In addition I would run a coaxial line in-wall between the equipment location and the sub location. This will keep you from having to drape a connection cable across the floor.
Quote:
One other post mentioned ceiling height inside the tray and below the tray. Do I assume we are talking a cable tray to be used so pulling wires through walls is not necessary?
This would be a nice approach for a retro installation, but since you’re pre-wiring I don’t see the point.
Quote:
I have read posts pertaining to running conduit right up to the seating area for delivery of gaming accessories and remote control cables etc. Do I assume that this situation requires a raised floor throughout the entire room and not just an elevated stage area?
If those things are part of your requirements, then yes, that’s one way to do it. Given the size of your room, you could also make the runs in-wall.

Regards,
Wayne A. Pflughaupt

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#4 of 8 OFFLINE   TonyD

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Posted August 29 2004 - 02:55 PM

Quote:
http://www.hometheat....60#post1856760
wayne that second link doesnt go anywere.
i'm interested inseeing what it was, if it was important.
facebook.com/whotony

#5 of 8 OFFLINE   Wayne A. Pflughaupt

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Posted August 30 2004 - 07:27 AM

Hmm… Don’t know why, but for some reason it won’t work unless you cut and past it.
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#6 of 8 OFFLINE   Adam Gregorich

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Posted August 30 2004 - 08:49 AM

I fixed it. The URL wasn't in the URL tag.

#7 of 8 OFFLINE   TonyD

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Posted August 30 2004 - 09:55 AM

almost. there is still a " [url "

at the end of that.

but seeing what it intended to point to thanks.
facebook.com/whotony

#8 of 8 OFFLINE   Adam Gregorich

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Posted August 30 2004 - 11:45 AM

Note that i said "I fixed it". I never said that I had "tweaked it" Posted Image


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