basic home theater questions

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Ajoy, Aug 22, 2001.

  1. Ajoy

    Ajoy Auditioning

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    I am new to the world of serious home theater, all along I have had a harmon kardon reciever, bose am5 speakers infinity center and surround. Now I am starting to build out my basement where I plan to have a serious home theater system. I have been reading a number of links this page has to offer, I had these questions :-
    *) projectors vs plasma TV - I suppose I cannot afford a very big plasma TV but is projectors the way to go and is the resolution acceptable - wxga 1366 x 768 ? ( I have had no chance to see a demo .. any recommendations on where to see demo in the washington DC area )
    * ) any special things to be done to the roof and walls for home theater ( for a do-it-yourselfer )
    *) sound system - is seperates the way to go or would a bose home theater system with those jewel cubes do any justice to good sound ?
    *) I understand that most of this has to do with the budget you have, is there any reference/articles to buying a good home theater system under $10k or under $15k
    I am sort of in an intermediate level and there is so much information out there, the difficulty has been to filter it and take a decision. Is there any pointer in this regard.
    thx in advance
    ajoy
     
  2. Lee J. Buividas

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    Ajoy I am building my own home out in Ashburn VA in the Regency and building a home theater also. So hi neighbor!!! ha ha ha I have been hanging around this excellent Home Theater Forum for several years and have met the way cool Ron Epstein at the really fun and informative Scooter Movie Party last year. If you can go to Scooters movie party this weekend in NJ go and you will learn a lot. Scooter is the Master of building a wonderful home theater or should I say many home theaters on a reasonable budget. An experience you will never forget. Unfortunately I can't attend this weekend.
    I would be glad to show you what I'm doing, just email me. I have through another excellent theater forum (AVS) met John Andrews who is in our area. He has been extremely helpful in putting my home theater together. I will introduce you to him if you want. John frequents this forum also.
    Like you say buying equipment and building a home theater can be very intimidating and confusing even after you do a lot of homework and research. I am a builder and Architect who has designed and built many home theaters and each one is different because each client has different needs and budgets. Now that I'm building my own home theater and home. I, like a lot of you have become more confused then ever even with experience in doing this for others and using it seems, a different home theater expert on every project. John has in our area been the most help to me especially for getting value for my money.
    Now, that the time has come for my own home theater which I am doing as economical as possible for a first class theater I have found setting a budget is very important and using this and other forums can save a ton of money especially when dealing with the local people. The sponsors of this and other forums can be very helpful especially when you tell them you found them here. They then know you are serious and you don't get the bull that you can at the local stores.
    Ajoy send me an email if you are interested in seeing what I am doing. I also plan a local Movie party like Scooters when I get my home done.
    Lee J. Buividas
     
  3. Shaun Pressley

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    Ajoy, while my budget was a little more than yours, I think you could do something very similar to what I did for my HT.
    You can see my pics at http://users.qwest.net/~shaunpressley You can buy a screen and nice DLP or LCD projector for under $3K. You know that the plasma sets cost more than that!
    Regardless of what approach you take, spend the money up front on the room, and what will be the most difficult to upgrade later. You can always upgrade speakers, receiver, etc later. You can't easily redo the insulation in the walls, carpet, stage, etc. Spending the time and money on the room, will make even cheapo equipment sound and look good. Upgrading to better equipment later on, will be just icing on the cake. Good luck.
     
  4. Ajoy

    Ajoy Auditioning

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    thx shaun for the reply, I had a chance to visit your site and was very impressed with the detail that has been posted there. I probably have a ton load of questions but to keep it simple -- now that I am finishing the rest of the basement and the home theater in it, I was wanting to outline the tasks that I was planning to do below - could you please chime in and give me your input :-
    the room : -
    | 20 ' |
    - -------------------------
    | | this wall extends another 40'
    | ----------------
    |
    |
    2 | Planned view shortest distance
    3'| direction
     
  5. Ajoy

    Ajoy Auditioning

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    lee,
    thx for your reply, looking forward to chat with you and meet john andrews. I have also sent you a mail and looking forward to your reply
    thx
    ajoy
     
  6. Shaun Pressley

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    If I had your configuration, I would a couple of things. First, solicit some well known local contractors and have them come in and give you some ideas and quotes. You'll really want to listen to what they are saying to see if it fits that picture you have in your head of what you think it should look like. The second thing you could do is hire Dennis Erskine of Design Cinema Privee, to design the space and draw up your plans so you can do this yourself. Dennis has done a helluva job for many people over the web and his rates are reasonable. The best part is that he covers all of your bases, so you don't have to ask what about this or that. For many people that justifies his fee by itself.
    If you're going to do this completely on your own, you should consider taking pictures of your existing space and draw up what you think is the ideal HT for that space. THEN, post in on the various HT forums and solicit feedback. You'll get some great input from many people who have been there, done that.
    If you require a soundproof environment, heavy curtains aren't going to help you much. If you don't care, then that idea is fine. Also, if you leave the whole basement open, that presents its own acoustical challenges.
    I was in a similar position as you over a year ago. I realized that I had more questions than answers and decided to soak up as much info as possible, by seeking input on the various forums and searching/reading about other's experiences. I learned enough to answer 95% of my questions, then I started building my HT.
    I hope this info helps. Feel free to email me at [email protected], if you need quicker answers.
    BTW- I just reached the 99% complete mark. My custom drapes will be installed on Friday and Cinema loungers are on their way from Berkline. New pics are up on my site.
    Shaun http://www.users.qwest.net/~shaunpressley
     

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