THINK THIS HOME THEATER LOOKS LIKE A NIGHTCLUB? This monster of a room can very easily pose as one.
This space measures 33 feet long, 22 feet wide and 13 feet tall, with three levels and comfortable seating for 28, give or take. No typo: There are 10 recliners in the front, eight barstools, and two raised “VIP” four-seat lounges at the rear of the room.
Complementing this unique seating setup and the sleek design are horizontal and vertical sprays of colored LED lighting, a winning combination crafted by home theater design firm AcousticSmart, of Merrick, N.Y., and A/V and lighting design and installation partner Audio Interiors, of Hauppauge, N.Y.
The colored RGB (red, green, blue) LED lighting is controlled by a Crestron automation system, which was programmed by the design and installation team to engage a host of preset lighting scenes by which the intensity levels and colors of the fixtures can adjust at the touch of a button to define and accentuate the texture of the wall, the rim of the bar counter, the custom-crafted soffits, and fiber-optic star ceiling. The effects are managed and controlled by three different systems: a DMX processor for the stage lights, a Lutron RadioRA for the overhead fixtures, and NuLEDs control for the rope lighting on the stairs and around the screen.
While the lights do their magic, nine speakers and five subwoofers deliver an impressive 8,300 watts of audio power via a remarkable 17 amplifiers. Six Classe CT-M600 600-watt monaural amps power the low-frequency drivers of the front Bowers & Wilkins (B&W) speakers and subwoofers in an unusual configuration that takes advantage of the B&W CT8’s electronic crossover capabilities. A Rane HAL3 Network Audio Processor allows the three front channels and subwoofers to be controlled exactly how the designers wished, and the subwoofers can be tuned with the necessary delays to avoid boomy bass.
The result is an open sound—even at high levels and without causing listening fatigue. “This system is so clean, you can listen to it at extremely loud volumes,” says Audio Interiors project manager and programmer Rob Woebber.
The nightclub transforms into a theater when motorized draperies part to reveal a 210-inch Vutec 16:9 screen with motorized masking, which alters the shape of the screen to accommodate wider CinemaScope formatted movies. The acoustically transparent screen hides the front B&W CT8 LR Reference Theater Speakers and three B&W CT8 SW CT8 subwoofers. (For business presentations, a dedicated set of the owner’s old speakers were positioned behind the screen, as well.) Six more B&W CT8.4 LCRS speakers are hidden behind the fabric walls for the side and rear surrounds, along with two more subwoofers on the sides. Audio this awesome should be well protected from potential degradation, which the AcousticSmart and Audio Interiors crew ensured by installing acoustical soundproofing materials extensively throughout the theater. Specially designed acoustical paneling was strategically mounted to the walls, and acoustical treatments that form a fiber-optic starfield were placed on the ceiling.
The ample seating at the bar and the VIP lounges make this theater a real crowd-pleaser, but the real comfy bits are down in front, with AcousticSmart’s Transformer recliners that adapt to the audio and video environment. On cue, motorized headrests ascend and descend during and after movie time. For now, the headrests are controlled by tapping buttons on the seats, but according to AcousticSmart, the movement can be easily integrated with the Crestron automation system to happen automatically.