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Help with my square room and home theatre build


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I'm moving into a new house next year and it has the below room which I would like to convert to a home theatre. These are certainly not the perfect dimensions for this use case, but do you think I can make it work? I know square rooms do suffer with base nulls and frequency issues, but I'm hoping I can find a solution that provides a good listening experience. I would love to be able to change the room size, but unfortunately there is a load bearing wall on one side and a garage on the other, so I'm stuck with it as is.

 

The room has sliding cavity doors, which are not ideal, but it's just me and my partner so containing the sound isn't the most important factor. Nothing I can really do about this anyway. Given the location of the doors (and that alcove), I think it means having the sofa on the left and screen on the right. I would like a projector, so speakers could go behind an AT screen.

 

The window at the top is quite wide (about 2.1m/6.9ft), but narrow (about .75m/2.5ft) and quite high up the wall.

 

The ceiling is 2.7m (8.86ft) high.

 

Should I go for Atmos (in-ceiling) in a room this size, or is that a waste? I was thinking 5.1.2. Is x1 sub adequate or would I benefit from x2? I will be buying all my kit, but I do have a pair of a MK M40T Tripoles, so I'd like to use those if possible - placement I am not sure about though. No doubt I will benefit from room treatment of some sort, but I don't know much about that. The room does have carpet.

 

What are your thoughts? Any advice would be much appreciated.

 

home-cinema-room.jpg

Edited by Ollz
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It is not ideal to use a square room but not end of the world for a home theatre.

https://hometheateracademy.com/best-home-theater-room-sizes-dimensions/

Use this as a guide but you will have to adjust for your conditions. It also has sizing guide for protector screen.

 

5.1.2 is a good config to aim for.

https://www.dolby.com/about/support/guide/speaker-setup-guides/5.1.2-overhead-speaker-setup-guide/#gref

 

First thing is to note is sofa should be away from wall and speakers should not be tucked all the way into corners.  Suggest getting tonally matched speakers and not reuse any old ones.   Treat room as much as possible.

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5 hours ago, Snoopy8 said:

It is not ideal to use a square room but not end of the world for a home theatre.

https://hometheateracademy.com/best-home-theater-room-sizes-dimensions/

Use this as a guide but you will have to adjust for your conditions. It also has sizing guide for protector screen.

 

5.1.2 is a good config to aim for.

https://www.dolby.com/about/support/guide/speaker-setup-guides/5.1.2-overhead-speaker-setup-guide/#gref

 

First thing is to note is sofa should be away from wall and speakers should not be tucked all the way into corners.  Suggest getting tonally matched speakers and not reuse any old ones.   Treat room as much as possible.

 

Thanks. How far off the back wall would you suggest a sofa should be? A few feet? Room treatment seems somewhat of a dark art, but it seems I won't really be able to determine a specific approach until I've got it all set up.

 

 

1 hour ago, idrabble said:

Try using this free service:
Audio Advice room designer
 

You can also try this site to show you what your room modes will likely be:
room modes calculator

 

Not 100% sure how to be reading that room mode calculator? I plugged in my dimensions but not quite sure what it's telling me.

 

 

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12 minutes ago, Ollz said:

Thanks. How far off the back wall would you suggest a sofa should be? A few feet? Room treatment seems somewhat of a dark art, but it seems I won't really be able to determine a specific approach until I've got it all set up.

Use the Dolby 5.1.2 guide.  For your room, at least 0.5m.  Just don't park sofa on the wall !

 

For simple room treatment, put as much soft materials as possible, even book shelves to reduce amount of reflection. You can also buy acoustic panels to do this.  Much harder to do, but far from a dark art, are big bass traps at the corners.  Bass in a square room is the biggest problem to solve.  If you are not comfortable to do this,  then hire a professional.

 

You have a dedicated room which allows for room treatment. It comes down to how much you are prepared to do, how much you are prepared to pay to achieve the best sound.

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  • 3 weeks later...

Hi @ollz, from my viewpoint, no room is perfect. 

I'd recommend at least a 5.2.2. Good bass makes all the difference, 2 subs will smooth things out. Play with the placement (maybe one in front, one in back, opposite corners). You might need to move them around a bit to get the best result.

 

Some basic stuff, like a thicker underlay for the carpet and thick curtains will help with room modes, maybe even in front of the pocket doors too.

 

The room dimensions are a bit of challenge. once you move the chairs forward and cover the recessed wall for the speakers/screen setup, you'll lose about a meter. This'll place your seating position at approx. 3 meters. 

 

With such a close seating position you'll need to decide how big a screen you want. Even without knowing your ceiling height, you have plenty of room for a pretty big screen. You've got the option of leaving the front stage clear, having your gear off to one side (the wall cavities give you plenty of room for cabling).

I can't believe I'm saying this, but going too big on the screen might be too big at that distance.

 

The room in the end will be a compromise of what you want and what'll work. Keen to see the results. Good luck.

Edited by dejay
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hi mate, i see you are in Adelaide. deciding to do a dedicated room has many parts to it and can get very daunting, i know myself. also the things you will quickly realise is how much of a HT room you actually want, how far in depth you want to go.

 

budget is always important but so is timing, this month is THE time to buy new gear if you want new gear vs refurbished or 2nd hand. there is nothing wrong with mixing as it usually saves money BUT... you are in Adelaide, very limited 2nd hand wise. oh 2nd hand means "pick up" unless you know the seller.

 

so lets look at the room. you have a natural recess for an A/T screen, buy or diy depending on if you can make 4 pieces of wood into a rectangle. you have a nice width for your seating using that left wall and i would do a full width riser with a single step each end, plenty of riser designs on youtube and avs forums (BEST source for anything HT) you do a riser to five that cinema feel and it does.

 

if you do want a A/T screen have a look at the following link on how to build the wall, it does not need to be a fully functioning structural wall, just a waste of wood,time and money. https://www.avsforum.com/threads/minimalist-approach-to-screen-wall.837848/

 

then the screen, you can buy material from several places in Australia, get "weaved" not perforated. the projector you have in mind also determines things. this will show throw calculations for many pjs https://www.projectorcentral.com/BenQ-HT3050-projection-calculator-pro.htm

that is for the benqw2700 as an example (3050 is u.s. model number)

 

i will suggest benq or epson, benq most likely a bigger screen at your seating distance. 3m to screen is most likely a 120" screen, most benq pjs do that.

 

2 subs yes, 12" prefered as its the sweet spot. i suggest buying book shelf speakers, ALL the same for a 5 ear level and 2 atmos set up, books will fit as heights.

 

as for room treatments i suggest really thick lined curtains for all walls, mkae it like a cinema.

 

i suggest you go and see Jason at Blackwood Sound marion and Robert/Hamish at Selby Acoustics at Malvern. I suggest you do not bother going to jbhifi or H/N.

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On 12/11/2023 at 4:09 PM, hopefullguy said:

hi mate, i see you are in Adelaide. deciding to do a dedicated room has many parts to it and can get very daunting, i know myself.

 

Yeah, I know how daunting it can be. I actually did a full garage conversion a few years ago in the UK before moving to Oz (pics below), which was a pretty epic project that I did all by myself, and took a very long time. I am not undertaking such a heavy work load this time, but there's still lots to think about. I am actually still very much in the early planning stage anyway, as the house isn't even being built until next year, so I will be able to wait until next Black Friday before I need to think about looking for bargains.

 

I am still in two minds about whether to go with a projector or TV though. As you say, the distance from the screen will be about 3m (perhaps just under), so 100-110" is probably the most I'd want at that distance. With that in mind, and already owning a 77" OLED, I may stick with that or see how much bigger sizes are at the time. You can get 98" models now for $5-6K, and while not OLED PQ level, neither is a projector. Plus a TV will have more gaming features, as I do intend to use it for that also. Obviously a TV would mean a slightly different speaker config, with a center speaker under the TV.

 

The home cinema I built in the UK had a 100" from a similar distance (using an Epson TW9400), and I built the screen myself as you can see in the photo, so I'm aware there would be a big difference going from 77" to 100".

 

Thanks for the suggestions, I will definitely check Blackwood and Selby out.

 

 

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Edited by Ollz
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Hi Olly

 

I've recently done a 5.2.4 install in a longer room, with in-wall speakers. I'm up on the river in Mannum. If you'd like to discuss, feel free to IM me, maybe even check out my room sometime.

 

Cheers, Don

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