Need Advice Building My First HT

Discussion in 'Home Theater Projects' started by Wilson Ortiz, Dec 23, 2005.

  1. Wilson Ortiz

    Wilson Ortiz Auditioning

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    Hi Guys,

    I'm finally ready to start building my Home Theater, and I need some advice on do's and don'ts

    I have a room in my basement which is going to double as my laundry room and my HT room. The room is 21x11 and since I'm going to stack up the washer and the dryer I'm only going to loose a couple feet 4x4 in the rear right corner, that will leave me with a 17x11 rectangular space. Plus the space next to the laundry room; here is rough sketch of what it looks like.

    _________Window_____________Small___________
    |............5x2 3ft.......................Window............|
    |............from floor....................1x2 1ft............|
    |............................................from ceiling.......|
    |................................................. .................|
    |................................................. .................|
    |...........|
    |................................................. ............... .|
    |__________....................................... ...........|
    |...............|................................. .................|
    |Laundry.....|.................................... .............|
    |Room........|.................................... ..............|
    |4x4..........|................................... ...............|
    |_________|_____Door_______________________|


    I can't go too crazy with materials and equipment a conservative number will be between $2K and $3K for material and the same amount for HT equipment Roughly $6K in total.

    I know is not much but i can't afford a mega HT right now and besides i just want it for my family and the occasional guest.

    I hope to put together something that's going to sound good and look nice. I believe I can accomplish this by planning ahead and doing things right from the start.

    Materials:
    I have heard that there is special sound proof insulation?
    Can I find that at Home Depot or Lowe's?
    Sheet-rock is there special kind? & how thick should it be?
    Floor I've heard wood is better for sound? can ceramic tile do the job? is a lot easier to maintain.
    Electrical outlets how far apart and how many?
    Ceiling? sheet-rock or drop ceiling i would like recess lighting?

    Equipment:
    Projector I found the InFocus SP5000 $1K any suggestions?

    Receiver I have a SONY STR-555 SE series 5.1 which i would like to keep but if the difference between 5.1 and 7.1 is what I think it is, then I will consider a new one I saw a Denon AVR-3805 for under $900 or if there is a way to upgrade my SONY?

    Speakers I have been contemplating the Bose AM10 III about $900.00 which is a 5.1 and if I get the 7.1 receiver I can then add two more Bose speaker and connect them directly to the receiver, i'm just afraid that the Bose system is not going to give as much bass but that I'll leave it to the experts; I like the way they look and sound but if there is something out there better and in the same price range then i'm open to suggestions.

    Equipment Position?
    I'm having difficulty deciding where to mount the projector, at the beginning i thought about mounting it right next to the laundry room projecting towards the wall on the right of the sketch, I was thinking using that wall as the screen of the projector which brings up another ? Should I invest on Screen or I've heard of special paint that will work as well?

    The problem I'm facing with placement of the screen and projector is that i would like to fit one or maybe two sofas or one sofa and one love seat with recliners.
    Any advice would be appreciated.

    The space right next to the Laundry Room can be the location for all the equipment and maybe a rack for the DVD collection any other ideas? for this space?

    Thanks a lot and sorry for the length of this post but I just wanted to provide as much information as possible.

    WilsonJ
     
  2. SethH

    SethH Cinematographer

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    Do a search on the forum for Bose. To sum up the general consensus: you can do MUCH better for the money. Search around in the Speakers section and you'll find several threads comparing Bose to better products that are less expensive.

    With a rather limited budget as you have, I would stick with your Sony and 5.1 right now. 7.1 is nice, but many still prefer to use 5.1 instead.
     
  3. Wilson Ortiz

    Wilson Ortiz Auditioning

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    Thanks Seth for your help.

    I've been reading a lot and you are right Bose are not what i thought they were, instead i looked into Polk, DT, and Klipsch. i tried to get pricing on Klipsch but was not very sucessful.

    Do you know of any place in the net where i can find prices on Klipsch.

    Thanks

    WilsonJ
     
  4. SethH

    SethH Cinematographer

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    I'm not sure where you can find Klipsch prices on the net. I know that BestBuy sells some of Klipsch's lower-end stuff.

    You might also look at the Hsu Ventriliquist and the new SVS satelite setup. The Hsu setup has received great reviews and the SVS system is brand new, but if it compares with their subs then it should be pretty sweet! Both would come in less than the Bose system with better sound and a MUCH better sub.
     
  5. Brian Osborne

    Brian Osborne Stunt Coordinator

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    Theater on a budget...
    I love it. I'm doing the same thing, just spending a bit more for a bigger room.
    A few questions.
    Where is the entrance to the Laundry closet? in the Theater room? or in the other adjacent room? the latter being better.
    How high are your ceilings? could make a difference on what you do for seating, flooring, etc..
    How many do you want to seat? If you are looking at just seating a family of 4 I'd do an 11x21 theater and maybe a 90" screen.
    If you need to seat more, you may have to go wider to accommodate more seats, but that may make the room a bit crowded.
    I'd prob look at doing what you said for placement, but check your projector, you may have a problem making the screen small enough with it placed that far back in the room. You may have to mount it above the seating area.

    I might be able to save you some time combing through the depths here.
    First of all the Laundry room right next to your theater could cause some problems with noise, if you are trying to do laundry at the same time you want to relax and watch a movie.

    If you have the head room, a drop ceiling can make things easy to access and does have improved acoustical qualities. You can also do recessed lighting easily as well.
    Sounds like you are getting a great price on that projector.
    I'd be tempted to keep the Sony amp for now, spend a bit more on the speakers and look at upgrading the amp later. When you do your wiring, just to save you a lot of trouble later, I'd run wires for 7.1. Look at doing in wall speakers for the rears. No matter what layout you end up with, speakers hanging from the ceiling or walls can be quite a pain, especially in cramped spaces. You WILL hit your head and curse yourself for putting them there, no matter where you put them.
    As far as the screen goes, I'm going to be using paint. I didn't want to bother with a screen, frame, mounting, is it going to wrinkle? I'm a DIY'er, so I'm using www.DIYtheatre.com . There is also screen goo at www.goothings.com . You can eat through a $2K budget REALLY quick if you start looking at screens and frames. I'll post an update on my thread Home theater in 2 weeks when I get the screen painted, that will be a couple of weeks late.... oh well, I tried.

    As far as placement of sofas, screen and such, here is what I'd do...
    Put your screen where you had talked about, speakers on each side, with the center underneath it. Projector, I think you are going to find will have to be above one of the sofas. A/V in the rear would work out fine, just means you run wires for your fronts in stead of for your rears. no biggie. If you get reasonable sized seating, you should be able to fit a Sofa in front and a love seat behind. Look at maybe an 80"? screen and the first sofa about 5' from the screen. This would put your eyeballs 8' from the screen, and that would be about right. That should leave you enough room behind to put a reclining love seat and still not be crowding your A/V rack or DVD shelving on the rear wall.
    Spend some time in the "things I wish I'd done different" thread, lots of good ideas in there.
    Good luck on your project!
     
  6. Wilson Ortiz

    Wilson Ortiz Auditioning

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    Thanks Brian for your ideas and comments, Santa was very generous this xmas so i have an extra $2K to invest on my HT. I'm going to keep doing more research and check the links you provided.

    I've been reading a lot of post here in this forum on do and dont's and they been very helpful.

    To answer your question? The Ceilings are about 8 FT tall probably loose a foot with the recess lighting or maybe not.

    The entrance to the Laundry Room will be facing the screen; I don't think noise from the LR is going to be an issue since thanks to my WIFE she only does laundry on weekdays and in the mornings (Maybe my daughters will have a problem but they can crank-up the volume if it become an issue) [​IMG]

    Tomorrow I'm going shopping for construction materials to start my project I will give updates on how is coming along

    Thanks Again

    WilsonJ
     

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