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HTR - Begins - My Log & Q's


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11 replies to this topic

#1 of 12 OFFLINE   Kevin-R-S

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Posted February 08 2006 - 07:14 AM

OK...

I figured I would start a log to track the progress of my HTR...

Details:

Status = Brand New Home... Basement HTR
Room Dimensions = 13ft(w) x 18ft(L) x 7ft 10inches (H)

Plans:

100 inch 16:9 Screen (homemade drywall and paint)

Equipment - Need advice

-------------------------

Current situation:

Currently I am in the process of studing the inside walls. All exterior walls have been studded and insulated.

Is there anything that I need to do before drywall goes on the walls.

Besides the obvious runs of speaker wire and video cable for front protjector which will be located at the back of the room..

Anyone have any tips or advice or tricks to offer at this stage in the game prior to dyrwall

Thanks
New to HT ... Need lots of Help...

Cheers

#2 of 12 OFFLINE   Brian Osborne

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Posted February 08 2006 - 07:58 AM

Check your placement on your projector. you might have a problem with throw distance. being that far away from the screen you may end up with a larger screen than you expect to. It would help a bunch if you gave an idea on your budget for equipment. plan on spending about $10-$12/ft2 to do the finish yourself. I am just finishing mine for just about $4K for materials and I spend about $6K on equipment and furniture. my room size is compareable to yours at 17'x22'. I was able
As far as things I'd do before putting up drywall... Check everything. hook up everything and make sure all your speaker wires are good, your component and other video cables don't have any problems. I'd also run an extra speaker cable. Mine is all run together and I ran an extra cable to the farthest speaker. This way if I have a problem in the future I can easily have access to an extra cable.
Are you doing a finished ceiling or drop ceiling? If you are finishing, I'd run a conduit from front to back in your room. Or from wherever your equipment is going to be to wherever your projector will be.
Post what you have now for equipment and what you are looking for and you will get a lot of good ideas. You might look at posting that info on each specific area of the forum... ie. Amplifiers or AudioVideo sources..
Good luck and have fun!
Keaton always said, "I don't believe in God, but I'm afraid of him." Well I believe in God, and the only thing that scares me is Keyser Soze.

My Equipment

Pics - Theater in progress

#3 of 12 OFFLINE   Kevin-R-S

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Posted February 08 2006 - 08:24 AM

Brain,

Thanks for the advice... I noticed in some of your pictures it appears you made your own cables...

Can you explain what you used to make your component cables, also did you make your own sub cables... Some of the runs can be long, and I heard of ways of making your own cables using RG6 cableing is this possible and if so are you sacrificing quality.

My Projector I would prefer right at the back of the room.. If this doesnt work out I can move it forward to fit the screen with little headache as the DROP CEILING I do will be one of the last things.

My budget is within what you mentioned around 12-15k and I plan on doing almost all the work myself except for the TAPING cause I really want a nice finish.

I was also wondering if anyone has any info on running hookups for a Gaming system to the middle of the room down the wall so that I can plug the gaming system in by the couches and not have to have it pluged in by the stereo. Also for pluging in cameras, and a laptop, or what ever.

Like an AV Junction box in the middle of the room that runs back to the AV Rack which will be located at the back of the room.

Any advice thanks
New to HT ... Need lots of Help...

Cheers

#4 of 12 OFFLINE   Michael Whitney

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Posted February 08 2006 - 09:01 AM

Read the "Things I wish I had Done" thread that is stickied above thse posts. A treasure trove of actual insight, rather then thoery. Couple of sites give calculations of seating, throw distance and visual sight ranges. Search on Web. Projectorcentral.com is a good site to get insight into a projector. My personal favorites in projectors for ~2K are the Panny 900, Sanyo ZL4 and the Optoma 72.

Before drywall goes up, really look around to any possible thing you might want in future and wire for it.

Depending where your equip will go, you can run a pvc tube through the 2nd tier riser and that will come out behind the 1st row of seats.

I started a thread last week that I was going to put my equipment in a stack in the center rear of my theater, with the projector facing forward and all components facing left side of the bumpout. This might help you depending on how many people you expect in your theater.

#5 of 12 OFFLINE   Paul-D

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Posted February 08 2006 - 10:26 AM

Check out some of these tips from diynetwork.com It will show you everything from designing to building to acoustics to calibration. I learned quite a bit from here.
Good luck and keep us all updated.

#6 of 12 OFFLINE   Brian Osborne

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Posted February 08 2006 - 10:31 AM

Any long run of regular RCA cable can have a lot of loss. I made my own when I was running more than just 8-10 ft. the only cables I made were Component and Composite video to the projector. Because they are made out of QuadSheilded RG6 they really aren't good for short runs because they have almost no flexablity.
Parts needed were gold series QS RG6 cable from radio shack. and 2 gold plated RCA male ends for that cable. Ends run about $6 each. There are solder ends and crimp on ends. I was only able to find the solder ends, wansn't an issue, I was soldering a lot of other things for longevity sake anyway. Directions on the RCA ends is pretty self explanitory and the manager at the radio shack I went to was very helpfull.
What projector are you planning on using? With ceilings low and with drop ceiling, you may be limited on where you can place your projector so it's not in the way. I did a finished ceiling because I didn't have the room to do drop and have a projector in the middle of the room.
Check out parts express for hookups. they have lots of things like this. If you are doing a riser, I'd do the hookups in the floor too. Mine is going to be in the front of the room under the screen. With the coming of wireless controllers and with the popularity of blutooth, I would worry too much about this if you can't get it done. It wont be long and you will be able to get a universal wireless controller for all gaming systems.
Sounds like your A/V rack is going to be in the back of the room so the only long run you will have will be to your front speakers. Your Sub can be in the back of your room, your projector will be fairly close to your rack. I'm buy cables, not make them.
Nice budget, you will be able to get quite a room for that doing it yourself. Do what I did, figure out what you want then figure out a way to make it fit in your budget. I cut some corners on some things, but I got what I wanted.
Do you have anything now? speakers? DVD player? HDbox? Amp?

edit - for your screen check out www.DIYtheatre.com
I couldn't be happier with the result.
Keaton always said, "I don't believe in God, but I'm afraid of him." Well I believe in God, and the only thing that scares me is Keyser Soze.

My Equipment

Pics - Theater in progress

#7 of 12 OFFLINE   Don.l

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Posted February 08 2006 - 11:05 AM

Some things I can tell you. I would go to here http://revision3.com/systm/avcabling/

for an excellent tutorial on making video cables.

I am building my HT and dimensions will be 10' X 22' and about 7.5' ceilings. Very narrow. I will be placing my projector back about 14' and projecting onto a screen that is 16:9 101" diagonal. According to the manual I can project on a screen that size anywere from 13' to 15'. So, you should be OK. BTW I have the Infocus I can't remember what it is, but it's pretty popular.

Definitely read the "Things I wish I would have done" post. I read the whole thing through, twice!

I am currently hanging sheetrock, and it sucks, but it will feel good when it's done.

Equipment? The only thing I would definitely focus on is ratios. I know that there is some ratio out there that tells you how much to spend on speakers versus receiver, but I would say one thing to get is an SVS subwoofer. www.svsound.com I have the 20-39 PC Plus, and it is huge, and I'm kind of scared of what it will do to the foundation (seriously).

Good luck and have fun building, I know I am.

Don

#8 of 12 OFFLINE   Jay Mitchosky

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Posted February 08 2006 - 02:16 PM

Before drywall I would suggest running nailers between the studs where the surround speakers are going to be located. Better to screw brackets into wood then using drywall plugs. For my theater I had the nailers but only a single 2x4 across so I was limited in positioning the brackets. I opted to make a sub-frame from MDF panels that I routed to the proper size. The MDF is screwed to the nailer, and the speaker brackets (claws actually) are screwed to the MDF. There is a hole routed from the middle to allow space for the wire to sit. When attached to the wall you can do chinups off the speakers and they won't budge. Plus the MDF sits inside the footprint of the speaker making them look like they float. I'll add some picture of this to my HTF gallery and you can check it out.
"The computer had attained consciousness, only to reject it, claiming it was too unstable an operating system."

#9 of 12 OFFLINE   Kevin-R-S

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Posted February 09 2006 - 02:07 AM

Thanks for the adivce Gents

I will be posting Pics very soon to start my Gallary.

My AV Rack will be located at the back of the room on the left hand side (when looking at the back) I plan on building the rack about 32" wide by about 7ft high attached to the rack will be a walk up counter top with storage under neath, the whole thing being profesionally built out of Maple. The guy doing my woodwork and cabintery is great, but I was wondering if anyone has any ideas for a swing out AV Rack that I can nicely swing out or pull out the components in order to gain access, as the location of the rack will be in the back corner of the basement up against two concreat walls.

Anyone have a plan or idea on the best way to deal with an AV rack in this type of space.

Thanks
New to HT ... Need lots of Help...

Cheers

#10 of 12 OFFLINE   Michael Whitney

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Posted February 09 2006 - 02:51 AM

You can search for pullout AV racks, they are priced on height from $400+ from what I remember. THey can pull out and swivel to allow rear access.

#11 of 12 OFFLINE   Kevin-R-S

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Posted February 09 2006 - 07:45 AM

This is a really green Q, but I have been researching the Pull Out style AV Racks at avrack.com and was wondering if I go that rought and build my rack into a cabinet at the back of the room. What do I need to do as far as IR immiters, or UHF controllers go before thinking about this.

What I mean is if all my components are tucked away in a cabinet that is enclosed at the back of my room what do I need in order to control all of them. Since most components I have are point and click at with remote. Can I do anything in this Case...

I currently have the following components

Harman Kardon AVR630 7.1
Shaw Digital Cable Box
Dish Network Analog Reciever
Panasonic DVD Player

How can I arrange to control these devices while they are stored away in a cabinet.

Any Ideas
New to HT ... Need lots of Help...

Cheers

#12 of 12 OFFLINE   Jay Mitchosky

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Posted February 10 2006 - 01:51 AM

Quote:
if all my components are tucked away in a cabinet that is enclosed at the back of my room what do I need in order to control all of them.
You need an IR repeater system. They come in two flavors.

One has a master IR sensor that you locate at the front of the theater. It runs (via CAT-5) to a main box located at the equipment cabinet. The box has mini IR emitter cables that run to each component and tape to the individual IR sensors. When the master IR receives your commands it transfers them to the main, which repeats the commands to each of the emitters. Pro: relatively inexpensive and uses your existing remote. Con: still relies on line of sight as you issue commands, which can compromise the effectiveness of macros.

The other is to use a RF remote control. The RF master remote transmits without line of site to a master base station. The repeating concept is the same as above, but instead of redirecting IR signals from the front it receives RF commands. Pro: line of sight not necessary so commands and macros are very reliable (given proper setup). Con: more expensive solution with proprietary remotes.

For my theater (see gallery) the equipment rack is in physically separate room. I use a Home Theater Master MX-850 RF remote to an MRF-300 base station. In addition to routing commands to the components I also have emitters connected back to the projector in the theater and to control my Lutron Spacer lighting system. Makes for great macro commands and you don't have to worry about where you point the remote.

I should have mentioned in my earlier comment to prewire for an automated lighting system like the Lutron Spacer. There is a thread detailing installation and wiring requirements stickied in this forum.
"The computer had attained consciousness, only to reject it, claiming it was too unstable an operating system."