Theater/Game/Family Room Ideas

Discussion in 'Home Theater Projects' started by johnM, Aug 19, 2003.

  1. johnM

    johnM Auditioning

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    My wife and I are looking over floor plans and thinking about building a new house. We want both a theater/media room and a game/family room. We think that one big combination theater/gameroom is the way to go. Both rooms will get more use that way since it will be a natural place for our son to hang out with his friends and for us to entertain guests. The main attractions would be the theater and a pool table with maybe a dartboard and other games. I currently have a rear proj TV but will eventually replace that with front projection.

    I am looking for ideas, pictures, layouts, etc. from anyone that has a room like this. We live in Texas so there are no basements. Most likely this will be in an upstairs "bonus room". We are trying to figure out the size needed, how to divide the two areas (i.e. half-wall, etc.) how we would position furniture, etc. We would like to be able to seat 6-8 comfortably in the theater area and eventually be able to accomodate a 110-120 inch screen.

    Any ideas and especially pictures of rooms like this would be appreciated. I did a search but most of the links to pictures no longer worked.

    Thanks,
    John M.
     
  2. Bernard Davis Jr

    Bernard Davis Jr Auditioning

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    John, I am in the process of building a "multi-use" room myself in my recently purchased home's basement. I don't have the overall space that I really would like so that I could incorporate everything that I really want in it which includes, a full service wet bar, a poker/game table, dart board, pool table, and of course a theater that seats 8-10 easily. What I do have is a space that is 28ft. long and half that is 12ft. wide and the other half is 14 ft wide. WIth this space I have everything listed above except for the pool table. I may end up borrowing space form my laundry room which is located behind my bar so that I can accommodate the pool table, but I'm not much of a pool player so that's not big deal. I have a couch and love seat and 2 recliners, that I have been playing with the configuration to see what fits the best. I like the stadium seating type of setup, but it's not really practical of a multi-purpose room configuration -IMHO. I have a 36" TV for regular viewing, and a fp with 80 X 54 screen running from an HTPC for movie viewing. I don't have any pictures as I am still working on the space, but here is a rough layout of what I have.

    http://f2.pg.photos.yahoo.com/ph/bda...net/lst?.dir=/
     
  3. Steve Lucas

    Steve Lucas Stunt Coordinator

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  4. johnM

    johnM Auditioning

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    Thanks for the reply Bernard.

    As for basements - I believe it is the soil here in the Dallas area that makes it difficult to impossible to have a basement. It is a high clay soil that shifts and expands/contracts with the weather. I could be wrong though.

    I have lived in different parts of Texas for 37 years and have never seen a house with a basement in that time. A few may exist but I have never seen them.

    John M.
     
  5. Jeff Engel

    Jeff Engel Stunt Coordinator

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    Hey John, yes the clay shifting so much is what precludes a basement. I have seen one basement while in my home search, it was over in Little Elm and I almost snatched it up. For my 2 cents I would say keeping the two rooms separate but near is more ideal. What you will be settling for is two rooms that are half what each of them could be and you will be sorry for it in the long run. I have my theater on my second floor and the pool table room is going in an adjoing open room about 5 feet awat. That way it's still an entertainment "area" but with separate and 100% dedicated rooms.

    If you want to see my room and plans let me know and you can come over to help you with ideas. I'm, only about 10 miles away in south Frisco near The Colony.

    Jeff
     
  6. johnM

    johnM Auditioning

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    Wow Jeff - very nice theater. Did you do this yourself? I may take you up on your offer to visit. I will email you.

    John M.
     
  7. Bernard Davis Jr

    Bernard Davis Jr Auditioning

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    John, I guess the important question is what is the maximum size that you can build this "bonus room" in? I agree with Jeff that having 2 separate spaces in close proximity of one another is ideal, but only if the individual spaces are large enough so they don't feel cramped. In my case I could separate the 2 spaces but I feel that each would have a cramped feeling to them. That's why I'm considering stealing space from my Laundry room. If I had another 150 - 250 sq feet that I could have a dedicated theater that seats 8-10 and a game room that would house a bar,pool table, game table and 36" TV for regular TV viewing. If you have the space then I say go for it, but if you are somewhat limited, then I feel like a multi-purpose rooms gives you everything that you want in a limited space.
     
  8. johnM

    johnM Auditioning

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    Bernard, that all depends on which floorplan we end up with and that decision is still a long way away. We are going to do some more looking this weekend. To do a combined room I think we would need at least 30 feet in length and 17-18 in width. If we can't do that then separate rooms would be the way to go.

    We just think that our lifestyle lends itself to a combined room. We not only want to use the room for movies, we watch alot of sports and it would be nice to play pool while watching football etc. I also love music and spend considerable time listening. We also want this to be a room that our son can hang out in with his friends when he is a little older. A room with a projector, stereo, pool table, dart board, and other games would be a great place to hang out as a family or with friends. If we have separate rooms then we have to decide whether we want to watch the game or play pool. I realize that a few compromises will need to be made but I think it will be worth it.
     
  9. Jeff Engel

    Jeff Engel Stunt Coordinator

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    John,
    Yes, all work including design was done myself. It's quite a piece of work if I do say so myself. I'm quite proud of it and would love to show it off to you if you're interested. I'm home on vaction until next thurs. so any time between now and then you can come by and check it out.
     
  10. Bernard Davis Jr

    Bernard Davis Jr Auditioning

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    John, I agree with your lifestyle statement 100%. I spend a lot of time entertaining in my "entertainment" room, and it's cool to have everything at your fingertips sort of speak, all while allowing everyone to congregate together. My lighting also plays a big role in my setup. I can lower the lights in the theater portion of my room, and people at the bar,game table, and dart board can continue with there activities uninterrupted. I'm also thinking about replacing my screen with a retractable one so it has a cleaner look to it. In terms of room dimensions, I think that a 30 X 18 room would be an idea size for you to accomplish what you want. With all of that said, while I enjoy my setup tremendously, I always end up rethinking it every time I see a theater the quality of what Jeff has. Jeff you did a wonderful job on your HT, keep up the good work! John, I look forward to seeing once you've started on your space.

    Peace!
     

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