What's new

New construction home theater setup (1 Viewer)

Ryano50

Auditioning
Joined
Jun 13, 2023
Messages
3
Real Name
Ryan
Hello all,
I’m looking for advice on a new construction home theater room. I’m a newbie in the world of home theater so any advice you can give on any of these topics or others would be appreciated:
  • Sound proofing
  • Electrical
  • Acoustics
  • Screen size
  • Room layout
  • Speaker placement
  • Lighting
The room is framed so can’t really change the room dimensions but electrical and lighting haven’t been setup yet. I’ll include some pictures of the layout and what I have so far. My budget for the components(not including seating) are TBD but I want to provide a great experience in the room.
Thanks in advance,
Ryan
6527CC22-691E-46C7-ADFA-C713C8C0F6A2.jpeg
4549395C-84A8-4C0E-8704-05247A768A58.jpeg
A3CC6F7A-44B6-4D27-9F03-48FCBC5BA4A7.jpeg
705B6037-E7F8-492D-B8E3-E849EBB7D626.jpeg
 

ManW_TheUncool

His Own Fool
Premium
Senior HTF Member
Joined
Aug 18, 2001
Messages
12,135
Location
The BK
Real Name
ManW
Welcome to HTF, Ryan!

Probably would help to get at least some (very) rough idea of your budget for this... though the vague info (and mentions of desired things like soundproofing and "acoustics") would seem to suggest you can allow a very sizeable budget (at least) for the whole project, but still... is it 20K sizeable or 100K sizeable or whatever in between (or much less... like below 10K) though?

Also, are you considering projection at all since your plan indicates TV? OR are you definitely too in love w/ the look (and HDR presentation) of the best that flat panels offer to trade that for the more immersive size (and general cinematic look) of projection?

Offhand, I'd also wonder if you really need the middle riser section to be 7ft deep as they makes that middle row of seating a lot farther from the screen than the front row -- 7ft is a rather big diff for viewing distance... plus it probably also compromises the audio setup some (more than usual), particularly in a relatively narrow space like this.

Also, if going w/ projection and the middle section doesn't need to be so deep, then that allows you to consider moving the front row back some and possibly set up a false(?) front wall w/ maxed-out acoustically transparent screen hiding the front speakers. That's probably what I would aim for if I were you since your space is so deep (and relatively narrow).

For (viewer/listener level) surrounds, if you cannot install (enclosed/regular) speakers into the walls, maybe go w/ some low profile, on-wall speakers instead. On the low-ish budget end, ELAC makes some pretty good on-wall speakers that are often on sale for ~$200/pair (like now), but of course, you can spend more for better as well.

_Man_
 

JohnRice

Bounded In a Nutshell
Premium
Ambassador
HW Reviewer
Senior HTF Member
Joined
Jun 20, 2000
Messages
18,934
Location
A Mile High
Real Name
John
I agree with Man regarding the depth of the middle level. You'd have to eliminate the chaise lounge seats there, but I think it's a good way to go. Then maybe move the back row a bit closer.

I suspect you are thinking in-wall speakers, but I highly recommend not going that way. It's a big room, and you want the capability to produce a rather decent amount of sound. Floor standing speakers for L&R and a capable center on a shelf, maybe even two, above and below the screen. You'll want at least two capable subwoofers, and probably one in the back.

I'm guessing the cabinets at the rear are for electronics? You should at least consider separates (preamp and external amps) rather than a receiver, and I'd wire XLR cables (as well as heavy speaker wire) at least to the front of the room, to allow for an amp to be put up there. You want to try and wire it for future updates as much as possible.
 

Ryano50

Auditioning
Joined
Jun 13, 2023
Messages
3
Real Name
Ryan
Welcome to HTF, Ryan!

Probably would help to get at least some (very) rough idea of your budget for this... though the vague info (and mentions of desired things like soundproofing and "acoustics") would seem to suggest you can allow a very sizeable budget (at least) for the whole project, but still... is it 20K sizeable or 100K sizeable or whatever in between (or much less... like below 10K) though?

Also, are you considering projection at all since your plan indicates TV? OR are you definitely too in love w/ the look (and HDR presentation) of the best that flat panels offer to trade that for the more immersive size (and general cinematic look) of projection?

Offhand, I'd also wonder if you really need the middle riser section to be 7ft deep as they makes that middle row of seating a lot farther from the screen than the front row -- 7ft is a rather big diff for viewing distance... plus it probably also compromises the audio setup some (more than usual), particularly in a relatively narrow space like this.

Also, if going w/ projection and the middle section doesn't need to be so deep, then that allows you to consider moving the front row back some and possibly set up a false(?) front wall w/ maxed-out acoustically transparent screen hiding the front speakers. That's probably what I would aim for if I were you since your space is so deep (and relatively narrow).

For (viewer/listener level) surrounds, if you cannot install (enclosed/regular) speakers into the walls, maybe go w/ some low profile, on-wall speakers instead. On the low-ish budget end, ELAC makes some pretty good on-wall speakers that are often on sale for ~$200/pair (like now), but of course, you can spend more for better as well.

_Man_
Man,
Thanks for the response and the welcome. Sorry for the vague info. The screen will definitely be projection, 110" minimum but as big as I can go depending on the rest of the setup. For better perspective, this will be in a vacation home and when not being used by me, I will be renting it out for short term rentals. I want to give them a great experience and something that is an awesome feature. With that being said, the property will sleep 16-18 people so I want to seat as many people as possible without compromising that experience. For a rough budget I would say around 10K plus/minus. with regard to the second row, I can probably cut it down a bit. Do you think the bigger screen allows for the 7 foot riser or still too far away? as far as the audio, i am definitely on the fence with on the wall vs in the wall.
-Ryan
 

Ryano50

Auditioning
Joined
Jun 13, 2023
Messages
3
Real Name
Ryan
I agree with Man regarding the depth of the middle level. You'd have to eliminate the chaise lounge seats there, but I think it's a good way to go. Then maybe move the back row a bit closer.

I suspect you are thinking in-wall speakers, but I highly recommend not going that way. It's a big room, and you want the capability to produce a rather decent amount of sound. Floor standing speakers for L&R and a capable center on a shelf, maybe even two, above and below the screen. You'll want at least two capable subwoofers, and probably one in the back.

I'm guessing the cabinets at the rear are for electronics? You should at least consider separates (preamp and external amps) rather than a receiver, and I'd wire XLR cables (as well as heavy speaker wire) at least to the front of the room, to allow for an amp to be put up there. You want to try and wire it for future updates as much as possible.
John,
thanks for the response. I am definitely new to home theater setup and have a lot to learn. I am on the fence with in wall versus on the wall. as far as the layout of the speakers I am open to any suggestions. from the research i have done(with a large grain of salt) I was thinking 7.1or2. I am not sure how to do the housing for all of the electronics(it will be rented out as a short term rental when I'm not using it) so I would like it to be tucked away where renters can't mess with it too much. the cabinets in the back will definitely have kind of a concession stand area with popcorn machine, drinks, snacks but can definitely house some of the electronics. can you explain the part about preamp and external amps rather than a receiver?
-Ryan
 

JohnRice

Bounded In a Nutshell
Premium
Ambassador
HW Reviewer
Senior HTF Member
Joined
Jun 20, 2000
Messages
18,934
Location
A Mile High
Real Name
John
Looking at your two responses, I have a few suggestions. $10K will be a bit of a squeeze, but we can do it... as long as you stick with HD projection, not 4K. That can always be upgraded later, if desired. Since you want the screen as big as possible and have the space, I strongly recommend building out the screen a couple feet and using an AT (acoustically transparent) screen, with the front speakers, and maybe sub(s) behind it. That is how movie theaters do it.

At that budget, you'll probably need to use a receiver, instead of separates, but with a rather small additional investment, it can be wired to be upgraded to separates later.

With some reasonably priced, floorstanding speakers for L&R, matching center, and on-wall surrounds like Man suggested, you can get a nice system going. The ELAC Debut v2 system can provide everything you need, including in-ceiling if you want to go Atmos. The reason we suggest not using in-wall speakers is they are lower performing, more expensive, and much more difficult to replace/upgrade.
 

JohnRice

Bounded In a Nutshell
Premium
Ambassador
HW Reviewer
Senior HTF Member
Joined
Jun 20, 2000
Messages
18,934
Location
A Mile High
Real Name
John
The separates I mentioned, and you asked about more clarification on, is really more of a fine-tuning, and would make your budget difficult. In short, most home systems are controlled and powered entirely with a surround sound receiver. Separates removes the power to external amplifiers and uses a surround processor (or preamp) to control everything. You can also do a hybrid setup, using a higher end receiver to power all except the front three speakers (for example) and an external amp to power the front three. As I said, it would be a minimal cost to wire the room to allow for that upgrade in the future. Ideally, in a separates setup, the amplifier for the front three channels would be located in the front of the room, with cables (preferably balanced XLR) going there from the preamp.

You can find a short article on it HERE.
 

ManW_TheUncool

His Own Fool
Premium
Senior HTF Member
Joined
Aug 18, 2001
Messages
12,135
Location
The BK
Real Name
ManW
What John just said.

Note HD projection still looks pretty great and impressive, especially if you're fairly new to this. Truth is most people don't even sit close enough to the screen to take full advantage of 4K anyway (or even 1080p in many cases), and HDR (from 4K formats) in projection doesn't add nearly as much as it does for flat panels due to the general limitations of the tech -- even the best theaters w/ best commercial/$$$ PJs and setup don't actually compete w/ the better flat panels for HDR.

At 12ft viewing distance, you can probably make out most, but not all, of the rez/detail gains of 4K over 1080p on something like a 135" screen... that is, if the source material even actually has 4K rez details -- and a whole lot of claimed 4K content do not actually have true/full 4K details. But that's only viewing in your front row. Viewers in your 2nd row and beyond probably won't make out more than 1080p details even if you shrink that middle section to say 5ft deep.

In any case, good 1080p content can definitely still look pretty great and impressive in the front row of such a setup... and maybe you can even still opt for a setup w/ 3D capability, heh. And you can always upgrade to 4K some years later (when the tech will advance and/or be more affordable).

One thing. You might wanna consider a natively 1080p PJ that can accept 4K signals (for downconversion), especially if you wanna stream content. 4K streams will benefit playback w/ higher bitrates (and other aspects) even if the playback will just end up downconverting to 1080p for final output. The other thing is you might wanna go w/ laser over traditional lamp-based tech, particularly if the space will be rented out often enough. Offhand, don't know which PJ(s) to recommend given all that, but maybe something from Epson or Optoma (or BenQ perhaps).

_Man_
 

ManW_TheUncool

His Own Fool
Premium
Senior HTF Member
Joined
Aug 18, 2001
Messages
12,135
Location
The BK
Real Name
ManW
I am in the planning stage of finishing my basement. I'm trying to decide between a 7.2 or 5.2.2. My receiver is capable of 5.2.2 or 7.2, but I will pre-wire for 5.2.4.

layout.jpg

@lamywaby, Given how big/deep your space is (and how inexpensive the actual wiring should be vs the potential/eventual additional labor cost and time/hassle, if done later), I'd probably just (try to) prewire (at least) for 7.2.4 instead, but just leave the wiring for the extra 2 channels unused until someday when you might upgrade your AVR. Of course, will have to arrange it all properly to look good and still (eventually) work well enough if/when you upgrade...

_Man_
 
Last edited:

Users who are viewing this thread

Sign up for our newsletter

and receive essential news, curated deals, and much more







You will only receive emails from us. We will never sell or distribute your email address to third party companies at any time.

Latest Articles

Forum statistics

Threads
357,539
Messages
5,140,353
Members
144,409
Latest member
LynPaulFan1961
Recent bookmarks
0
Top