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Need Advice: Media Room Equipment/Layout


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#41 of 108 djtech2k

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Posted January 15 2013 - 01:57 PM

DJ, tell us your projector budget again. In the meantime, I came up with 3 nice 1080p projectors that will work with a 10' throw and 103" diagonal, or larger screen sizes. 1) Panasonic AR100U - LCD, 10' throw, 104" diagonal max, lens shift. 2) Epsom 8350 - LCD, 10' throw, 103" diagonal max, lens shift. 3) Benq W1070 - DLP, 10' throw, 120" diagonal max, lens shift(but VERY limited). Only allows vertical shift of 10% of image height. It may work, but it depends on where you want the top of your screen.

Thanks a lot. Well I am really trying to figure out my budget now, but I would say for s projector I could do about $1500 or so. Heres the deal...when I started planning the media room, I was thinking $4000 as a ballpark budget for the room. $5000 would be on the high end for me. My original plan was to get a 60" Plasma and some nice home theater Palliser seats. Now with the projector idea, I have to rethink everything. For the projector, I need to make more changes to the room, I need to buy audio equipment immediately, and I have to factor ongoing costs for bulbs, etc. So with this major change, the budget becomes harder to calculate. So if I seem wishy-washy, then hopefully that explains it. The Palliser seats are SO nice, but they are expensive, If I cannot get a good quality setup and the Palliser seats, then I would consider other seating if I have to. For the paint, you guys are saying to use something like a drk grey for the front tv wall? How much impact are the other walls? Do you guru's think I can get everything for a quality room with this budget/room? I am looking at the links and projectors you mentioned, but honestly I know nothing about projectors to know what sets them apart.

#42 of 108 schan1269

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Posted January 15 2013 - 02:14 PM

Well we have some questions...(cause $4000/$5000, with judicial spending, is plenty...) 1. Do you care about 3D? 2. Agreeable to pre-owned equipment? 3. 5.1/7.1 or height/width? 4. What are the "sources" in total? (VCR/Wii/Laptop/Iphone/Ipad/Droid) About 1. If you care not for 3D and the answer to number 2 is "yes"... In the AVR department, that opens you up to gems like these... http://www.ebay.com/...=item3f2123db59 (the "new" version is $1800) http://www.ebay.com/...=item5aec4e253f (this bad boy was over $2000 new) 3. Heigh/width are the "new" things. You can still find used AVR for less than new ones... http://www.ebay.com/...=item27ced43396 ($400 probably takes it...the 818 is the "new one") 4. The less you need "legacy", the less you can pay for the AVR...if you "have to have new".

#43 of 108 schan1269

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Posted January 15 2013 - 02:17 PM

Here is the "bigger risk"...but I'm not shy over pre-owned plasma/LCD either. To me, projectors are no different... http://www.ebay.com/...=item20cea76eea (I doubt it it makes it to 60% of the Amazon price, so yeah...I'm saying I'd be shocked if this makes it to $700)

#44 of 108 djtech2k

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Posted January 15 2013 - 02:58 PM

Well we have some questions...(cause $4000/$5000, with judicial spending, is plenty...) 1. Do you care about 3D? 2. Agreeable to pre-owned equipment? 3. 5.1/7.1 or height/width? 4. What are the "sources" in total? (VCR/Wii/Laptop/Iphone/Ipad/Droid) About 1. If you care not for 3D and the answer to number 2 is "yes"... In the AVR department, that opens you up to gems like these... http://www.ebay.com/...=item3f2123db59 (the "new" version is $1800) http://www.ebay.com/...=item5aec4e253f (this bad boy was over $2000 new) 3. Heigh/width are the "new" things. You can still find used AVR for less than new ones... http://www.ebay.com/...=item27ced43396 ($400 probably takes it...the 818 is the "new one") 4. The less you need "legacy", the less you can pay for the AVR...if you "have to have new".

1) No I don't care about 3D. If it has it then great, but I have nothing else 3D. 2) Pre-owned, I am not sure. I wont say no, but I have never considered it. I may consider it for some components, especially if the deal is legit and great value. 3) I know 5.1/7.1 is dolby. I don't know what height/width is. For sound, I would just like something decent. Like I said, I have no wiring for it, do install/wiring is a major factor. 4) Bluray, XBOX360, HD Cable, maybe a misc other input for something that comes along...maybe Bluetooth or HDMI...not a huge deal.

#45 of 108 schan1269

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Posted January 15 2013 - 03:11 PM

1. Good. Keeping 3D out of it makes it simpler(3D requires a brighter projector) 2. If there is one thing you buy pre-owned...buy your speakers that way. Depending where you are, Craigslist can be a goldmine. 3. Dolby and DTS are both 5.1 and 7.1. 7.1 "native" only exists on BD. 4. EVERYTHING new is HDMI. "Legacy" refers to video equipment that isn't. So if you have 3 HDMI sources and stick with 5.1...you could get away with this as your "brains of the operation"... http://www.accessori...RECEIVER/1.html (it even has USB for an Ipad/Ipod)

#46 of 108 Jim Mcc

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Posted January 15 2013 - 06:05 PM

Thanks a lot. Well I am really trying to figure out my budget now, but I would say for s projector I could do about $1500 or so. Heres the deal...when I started planning the media room, I was thinking $4000 as a ballpark budget for the room. $5000 would be on the high end for me. My original plan was to get a 60" Plasma and some nice home theater Palliser seats. Now with the projector idea, I have to rethink everything. For the projector, I need to make more changes to the room, I need to buy audio equipment immediately, and I have to factor ongoing costs for bulbs, etc. So with this major change, the budget becomes harder to calculate. So if I seem wishy-washy, then hopefully that explains it. The Palliser seats are SO nice, but they are expensive, If I cannot get a good quality setup and the Palliser seats, then I would consider other seating if I have to. For the paint, you guys are saying to use something like a drk grey for the front tv wall? How much impact are the other walls? Do you guru's think I can get everything for a quality room with this budget/room? I am looking at the links and projectors you mentioned, but honestly I know nothing about projectors to know what sets them apart.

All 3 projectors I recommended above are below $1,400. The Benq is the cheapest at about $1,000. Fof the screen wall, a flat black paint is the best(If you go with a projector). If you go with a TV, it doesn't matter. The same answer for the other walls. I don't know if your budget allows it, because I have no idea what those seats cost, for one thing.

#47 of 108 djtech2k

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Posted January 16 2013 - 02:48 AM

All 3 projectors I recommended above are below $1,400. The Benq is the cheapest at about $1,000. Fof the screen wall, a flat black paint is the best(If you go with a projector). If you go with a TV, it doesn't matter. The same answer for the other walls. I don't know if your budget allows it, because I have no idea what those seats cost, for one thing.

Do you think those 3 are the best options for me? If so, which would be the pick? I always watch for great deals, so I will definitely be looking for those projectors. For example, my buddy just bought a Optoma HD180 for $600 from woot. The Palliser seating is SO nice, but pricey. Like I said, I want to get it, but the budget may not work. I want to get the room right first, then figure out what furniture I can get. If you forget the furniture, what would you guys buy and what would it cost?

#48 of 108 schan1269

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Posted January 16 2013 - 03:53 AM

I'd spend $1200-$1800 on the projector(keeping in mind...used, that will snag what was a $2000+ projector 1-2 years ago). The AVR would fall in the $400-$700 range. Again, I'd buy used. Speakers would be a minimum of $2000. The other $1000 would go elsewhere. (paint for the wall etc) By the way...This would give you a 102" image...and would be my pick http://www.ebay.com/...=item2a28172f73 It isn't a terribly bright projector so you would pretty much have to create a daytime high gain screen and an even gain nightime screen. But this was a $5000 projector. And yes, the flaw it has can be worked around... The next step down... http://www.ebay.com/...=item3f2130fda8 I'd put either of those up against the "new" projectors. But yeah..."daytime concessions" would have to be made.

#49 of 108 djtech2k

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Posted January 16 2013 - 05:01 AM

I'd spend $1200-$1800 on the projector(keeping in mind...used, that will snag what was a $2000+ projector 1-2 years ago). The AVR would fall in the $400-$700 range. Again, I'd buy used. Speakers would be a minimum of $2000. The other $1000 would go elsewhere. (paint for the wall etc) By the way...This would give you a 102" image...and would be my pick http://www.ebay.com/...=item2a28172f73 It isn't a terribly bright projector so you would pretty much have to create a daytime high gain screen and an even gain nightime screen. But this was a $5000 projector. And yes, the flaw it has can be worked around... The next step down... http://www.ebay.com/...=item3f2130fda8 I'd put either of those up against the "new" projectors. But yeah..."daytime concessions" would have to be made.

Thanks. I will look at all of those suggestions. I am not opposed to buying used if it helps me get to my goal. The budget there is going to be hard for me though. The things you mentioned will end up taking up all of my budget for the room but does not account for furniture. My budget for the room will have to be something like $4000-$5000, including furniture. Now I can be flexible in some areas and will do what I can to make it work, but I cant end up with a $10000 room right now.

#50 of 108 djtech2k

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Posted January 16 2013 - 05:05 AM

One other general question about projectors... How is the depth of the picture on these projectors? While at the big screen store recently, they showed the same stuff across many TV's. The LED TV was very bright, but the color/picture depth of the Panasonic Plasma was far superior. The colors were much deeper and it almost made it look "3D" on a non-3D TV. On my room, I will do as much as I can to manage the brightness/darkness, but I definitely want a projector bright enough to not have to worry about every inch.

#51 of 108 schan1269

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Posted January 16 2013 - 05:17 AM

Palliser is anywhere from $2500 to $5000+. Of course if you want to have great furniture to watch a $600 projector, $300 screen, $200 AVR and $800 in speakers...fine.

#52 of 108 Jason Charlton

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Posted January 16 2013 - 05:34 AM

I'll add my two cents on the seating...


For me, personally, I'm not crazy about theater-style seating in a home theater, particularly if the room/space is intended to be multi-purpose.


For one, it's darn expensive.  In terms of a percentage of the overall room, the audio/video components should make up the bulk of the budget, not the furniture.  A 4-seat row of all leather reclining theater seats is going to blow up close to $4k of your budget.  Unless your overall room budget is in the neighborhood of $10k, those seats are simply in a product tier that is beyond what you should consider.


Secondly, high-back seating in a home theater will impede the listener's ability to discern the surround and rear channels.  Not all theater-style seating is like this, but much of it is designed to support the head - meaning your ears are blocked to some degree.


Finally, (and this is more a personal taste thing), my wife and I use our basement projection system for "normal" TV viewing almost every evening (it's actually the only HD screen we have in the house).  Sometimes we like to cuddle or she likes to lay down while watching.  Can't do that if all you have are individual seats.  I guess I feel like theater seating is less "personal" and more "commercial" than a "home theater" ought to be.


I have used a nice futon sofa that can very comfortably seat 3 adults (or two "couples" who aren't afraid to be touching).  We also have a couple of standalone chairs to either side, and have plans to add a narrow "bar" ledge behind the sofa and add a few mid-height stools back there for big crowds.  We're starting to shop for a new sofa - but will stick with a sofa for sure. (the kids like pillows on the floor, too).


It took me a couple of false starts over nearly a decade before I was finally able to really complete my dream home theater.  It's very difficult to "do it all" in one or two short steps.  IMO, the best thing you can do that will keep the project going/growing is to focus on creating an awesome Audio/Video experience first.  If you give yourself a reason to go down there, then you can easily justify the cost of nice furniture later on down the road.  If you go the other way first, it will be hard to justify all that you spent on furniture for an underwhelming A/V setup.


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#53 of 108 schan1269

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Posted January 16 2013 - 05:46 AM

"comfortably seat 3 adults (or two "couples" who aren't afraid to be touching)" That also depends what kind of movie you are watching... Secretary Secretariat War Horse

#54 of 108 djtech2k

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Posted January 16 2013 - 06:46 AM

Points very well taken. I have known that it would be a stretch, but I do really like some of the seat configurations. I do need to get decent furniture for the room, but I do not need to go to the extreme and try to spend $500 for the projector and $5000 for furniture. All things considered, I need to figure out exactly what the right A/V equipment setup will cost me. I am hoping that I can get a solid setup and at least have something left to at least start to buy furniture. It probably won't be Palliser, but once I know what equipment costs I really need, then I can make decisions about what I am willing to spend on furniture. I mean if equipment costs are going to be $4000-$5000, then that's going to make it tough for me and I need to make decisions based on that. If it is less than that, then I can try to get more of the room complete. I realize that there are millions of options. Obviously my budget is not overwhelming, but I am hoping to be able to get a nice setup for a few thousand, before furniture.

#55 of 108 schan1269

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Posted January 16 2013 - 06:54 AM

I still think you need to consider one of these...especially as the prices keep plummeting....(Mits dropped out of consumer TV completely) http://www.amazon.co...eywords=82" dlp http://www.amazon.co...eywords=92" dlp

#56 of 108 djtech2k

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Posted January 16 2013 - 06:58 AM

I still think you need to consider one of these...especially as the prices keep plummeting....(Mits dropped out of consumer TV completely) http://www.amazon.co...eywords=82" dlp http://www.amazon.co...eywords=92" dlp

I looked at DLP's at the Big Screen Store, but I was not impressed with the picture at all. They all seemed grainy and did not have any depth.

#57 of 108 schan1269

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Posted January 16 2013 - 07:12 AM

That is not the environment for a visual comparison. Did you ask about seeing one with a BD player directly connected? Cause the 73/82/92 is essentially the same thing as this... http://www.amazon.co...s=dlp projector (and this one at 10' gets you 98")

#58 of 108 Jason Charlton

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Posted January 16 2013 - 07:18 AM

DJ - are you in VA or MD?  Just curious if you were referring to the Towson MD Big Screen Store, that's not far from me.


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#59 of 108 schan1269

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Posted January 16 2013 - 07:25 AM

Not sure if this is close to you...and better descriptions would be nice...but Sanyo projectors are really good... http://baltimore.cra...3469598025.html The projector is a PLV-Z(unknown which actual one 2000/3000/4000)...and those ROCK.

#60 of 108 schan1269

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Posted January 16 2013 - 07:56 AM

With some research...that looks to be a Z2000 Sanyo. Still a good projector...but for the price he's asking that better be a Stewart Screen(or other expensive screen) and an Onkyo NR807(higher/newer).




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