A $1 million Texas home theater has had its performance modeled on the Capitol Studios Dolby Atmos Music Studio C room. A longtime customer of Texas-based A/V Integration company Sound Lab Designs assigned principal Ernie Blumenthal with the task of creating a “without compromise” Dolby Atmos theater in a home the former was having built.

Blumenthal and his client flew to Los Angeles to experience several of Capitol’s rooms with Studio C – the Dolby Atmos Music certified room – setting the benchmark for modeling the theater’s acoustical performance.

The design and installation team proceeded to build the theater like a professional recording studio. Two acoustic access doors and room-within-a-room construction completely isolate the theater from the attached house. The audio portion of the theater consists of PMC’s flagship active speakers and subwoofers, in a similar but larger scale version of the PMC system used in Capitol’s Studio C. A StormAudio ISP 3D.32 ELITE is the chosen preamp/processor and the projector is a 4K Digital Projection 30,000-lumen laser model with anamorphic lens.

“This 2-year project was completed in 2019 for a homeowner client that simply wanted the best,” says Blumenthal. “Overall cost of the theater including the equipment was over $1 Million and I’d venture to say this studio-grade theater achieves truly the finest sound and picture quality available today, perhaps one of the finest in the US today.”

The back of the theater features a top-of-the-line VPI turntable, McIntosh phono preamp and custom-made stand. Because the room is built like a recording studio, it is designed to play back music and movies in mono, stereo or, of course, in immersive surround. Also in the room is a 2.40:1 Seymour-Screen Excellence Reference-Grade Enlightor Neo acoustically transparent screen surface and 22ft-wide 2.40:1 Adjustable Ratio Theater (ART) motorized masking system, collapsible to all ratios including 4:3.

“I’m proud to say that our ART system is gracing the finest venues in America, from this theater (the first ART sold), to private VIP screening rooms, movie studios and most recently the Museum of Fine Arts in Houston, Texas. We also offer dealers our “Fly the Factory Guy” option, where we’ll come in and handle the setup and calibration of our film screens and masking systems,” said Chris Seymour.


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Published by

Martin Dew