starter HELP needed

Discussion in 'Beginners, General Questions' started by Nina, Apr 12, 2004.

  1. Nina

    Nina Auditioning

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    We are building a new house. They are in the stage of doing wiring right now.

    I have a second-floor finished room over garage (FROG) 17 31/2' X 11 71/2' that we plan to set up home theater. I have no idea what I should do regarding wiring, what kind of equipment. What kind of advice do you, gurus, have for me?

    I also plan to install some speakers downstairs in the kitchen area. Do you think I should buy a separate center for that? Somebody in Radioshake told me that buying a separate center would allow me to play music while somebody is upstairs playing TV. What do you think?
     
  2. mark alan

    mark alan Supporting Actor

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    What do you want? front projection, rear projection, plasma, 5 speaker surround, 6, 7? It all matters in how you run the wiring. Decide what is going in there, and we can tell what you will probably need, and where you will need it.

    Some hometheater receivers can operate two different zones, one playing music and one playing movies simultaneously. When looking at receivers, look at their 2 zone capability, and make sure that they can operate simultaneously. Obviously, the two zones will require more wiring.
     
  3. Nina

    Nina Auditioning

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    I have no idea regarding what we should have in that room. I only have budget of $3-4k including TV in that room. Please give me some advice
     
  4. DanielKellmii

    DanielKellmii Supporting Actor

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    Take a few minutes and read the Home Theater Primer. It is at the top of the basic forum.
     
  5. mark alan

    mark alan Supporting Actor

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    Plasma is out with that budget. You can either have a rear projection television, which is typically 42"-60" diagonal in size, or a front projection system, which is much larger, and gives you a more theatrical experience. It all depends on what you want to do. Are you setting up a home theater, or you making a tv room? If it is a tv room, you might be happier with a rear projection. If it is a home theater, then I would recommend front projection.

    You can buy a front projector or rear projection tv, receiver and speakers for your budget. It won't be top of the line, but if set up properly, will look and sound great.

    Do some reading, decide what you want and start asking questions. The are a lot of knowledgeable people here, but you have determine what you want to do, so that we can give you guidance.
     
  6. Wayne A. Pflughaupt

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    Nina,

    First welcome to the Forum!

    Mark is right, it’s pretty hard to give good advice if you have no idea of what you want.

    Since you specifically asked about advanced wiring, I’ll stick to that. Since your budget is $3-4k I’ll assume you’re going to use a more standard TV and not a projector.

    First, you need to decide in advance how the room will be laid out – specifically, where the equipment (electronics) will be, where the screen or TV will be, and where the seating will be.

    All the wiring mentioned will be routed to a wall near the equipment location.

    First there needs to be a dedicated electrical circuit for home theater electronics. A single 20-amp circuit should be sufficient. I recommend having a pair of double-gang outlets box installed near (preferable behind) the equipment location, which would accommodate four outlets. To me this is much preferable than using a single outlet and cheap power strips.

    Lighting and any other accessories you intend to have in the room should be powered with separate circuits. The circuits for equipment and lighting should be on opposite phases at the breaker panel, to eliminate the possibility of dimmers and such introducing noise in the home theater system.

    From the equipment location, run in-wall rated speaker wire to each location you intend to have speakers. This includes the rear speakers for sure. Naturally, you will have to decide in advance where your rear speaker locations will be. Make a separate run back to the equipment rack for each rear speaker you intend to use, rather than have the wiring daisy-chain from one speaker location to another.

    If you plan on entertaining guests in your HT and having more than one row of seating, plan on having an extra pair of rear speakers.

    If you would prefer that the speaker wire for the front speakers be hidden, you can run them in-wall as well and have them come out directly behind the speakers. Again, you will have to decide on locations in advance.

    Leave enough slack in the speaker leads at the equipment location for the wiring to get from the wall to the equipment. Make sure each speaker wire run is labeled at the equipment location, for future reference: “RR” (right rear), “LF” (left front), FC (front center), etc.

    If your home theater involves any television viewing, you will want to run at least two RG-6 coaxial cables from the equipment location for TV or satellite antennas, or both. You’ll need to determine in advance where the antennas will be located.

    Along the same lines, if you plan to install a satellite system you’ll need a phone line to be dropped at the equipment location.

    If you intend to have a powered subwoofer, you’ll probably want to locate it in one of the front corners. To accommodate that, you’ll need an electrical outlet there, tied into your dedicated circuit, and a signal cable run from there to the equipment location. The same RG-6 will work fine for this.

    Hope this helps.

    Regards,
    Wayne A. Pflughaupt
     
  7. Ted Lee

    Ted Lee Lead Actor

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    rockin' post wayne.

    to give you an idea of where all those speaker wires should go, take a look at this website

    http://www.dolby.com/ht/Guide.HomeTh....html#chapter3

    it gives some good info about where the speakers should go.

    you're really in a great spot right now. being able to run the wire ahead of time is *so awesome* -- you'll be very glad you had this opportunity when you're all done.

    regarding gear, do you know the basics of ht? do you know what kind of equipment you'll need? do you know how big of a tv you want?

    let us know where you are on all this. if you need baby-steps ... just let us know. and *definitely* read the beginners' faq - it's chock full of good info.
     
  8. mark alan

    mark alan Supporting Actor

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    great post Wayne.

    However, I wouldn't rule out front projection. You can easily get a pretty good setup in that budget (projector, speakers, receiver). You just have to plan on a DIY screen and projector mount, avoid the overpriced wiring trap, and be comfortable installing and wiring it yourself
     

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