Theater Room Takes Long & Lean Approach
This DIYer works a big theater into a skinny space, with stunning results.
November 07, 2010 by Rachel Cericola

Caveney is pleased with how the room turned out, but it was not without elbow grease—and a whole lot of web surfing. “As an educational platform, the Internet was indispensable,” he says. “This project would not have been possible without it.”  His good friend and inspirational theater-savvy neighbor also served as a technical resource and sounding board.

A good portion of that research time was spent studying home theater acoustics.  “We wanted to incorporate a variety of elements to enhance the audio characteristics of the room, but not make the room look like an acoustic or anechoic chamber,” Caveney says. The web helped, and so did making a plan.

The end result has various types of bass and sonic traps positioned at key reflection points. These traps include four 14-inch traps, which were custom-made to look like architectural columns. Another two main 18-inch traps were placed inside the columns behind the curtains. Five more traps were integrated into wall panels about 1.5-inches thick. Finally, thick carpet covers the bottom of the wall, which helps minimize high-frequency reflections.

Caveney picked up many tips on the technical aspects of his home theater by chatting on sites like CurtPalme.com and the AVS Forum, while also collecting lots of ideas for aesthetics from their photo galleries. Referencing several different home theater magazines also helped in refining the overall look.

“My wife implied several times that this better not look like a playroom with black paint on the wall!” An in-wall rack helps keep the installation looking cool, with smoked glass in the front and alcove access from the back.

The awkward room shape and the extensive research involved made this project quite a challenge, Caveney admits. But it’s one he’s glad he took on, as the end result is a far cry from his previous entertainment setup.

“Prior to this project, we owned one 20-year-old 27-inch TV we bought when we got married.” Needless to say, the home theater is a big step up in entertainment value, and one that the long and lean room lets not just Caveney and his wife enjoy, but their entire social circle.

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Rachel Cericola - Contributing Writer
Over the past 15 years, Rachel Cericola has covered entertainment, web and technology trends. Check her out at www.rachelcericola.com.

About the Project
Total Money Spent: $22,500
Location: Johnson City, Tenn.
Room Size: 23 by 14 by 9 feet
Year Completed: 2007
Total Project Time: 2½ years

Equipment List
Barco BG808 Graphics CRT Projector
Lumagen Vision-HDP Pro Video Processor
MUX-HD HDMI/DVI Repeater
OPPO DV-980H DVD Player
Phase Technology Velocity Series 5 Speaker System
Samsung DTB-H260F HDTV Terrestrial Receiver
SpeakerCraft AIM7 In-Wall Speakers (2)
Stewart StudioTek 130 108-inch Screen
SVS PB1-ISD Subwoofer
Yamaha RX-V2400 Receiver
ZeroSurge 7.5Amp Surge Suppressor/Power Conditioner


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