Skip to main content

Beachfront Basement Theater

The main objectives for this project were to create a 10-seat home cinema with outstanding picture and sound, privacy from the main living spaces of the residence, and a design style that flowed naturally into the rest of the home. The client wanted the basement cinema in their new custom beachfront home in Dana Point, California to follow the traditional architectural look of the house. It had to retain the classical decor while being comfortable and delivering high performance quality.

Located underneath the Great room, the initial plans for the cinema made no effort to provide sound isolation or noise control. So we redesigned and reconstructed the wall structures, ceiling structures, and floor layouts to provide STC65 sound isolation, proper sightlines, and proper sound reflection decay times, all while respecting the original architectural style. 
A ventilation supply duct for the Great room transitioned through the top right corner of the cinema, so we had to fully insulate the duct in order to prevent sound leakage. All plumbing in the vicinity of the cinema was mounted on isolation bushings to prevent water noise and sound vibration transfer. Additional supply and return ducts were installed in order to reduce the background noise of the room.  

In the back of the cinema, there was a fireplace slab floating into the structure of the room which would have caused a serious sound leak; we did extensive retrofitting which included rebuilding the wall frame resiliently, dropping a sprung ceiling, installing a resilient floor system, and adding a sound-rated door. 

The client insisted on an entrance toward the front of the room even though the floor layout did not lend itself to retrofitting a riser at the back of the room.



The original design called for tall wainscot, but we recommended all fabric treatments instead, and in the process the homeowners decided on a rather wild fabric design!


Baffle-mounted Wisdom Audio line source speakers were installed across the front of the room, hidden behind an acoustically transparent screen. A high-quality video projector was built in a noise-reduced enclosure. 

Four custom Triad dual 10-inch subwoofers - placed in the four corners of the room - are driven by four channels of equalization for tuning out detrimental standing waves. Four carefully-located side surround speakers and two back speakers provide a consistent, immersive experience across all the seats of this world-class room.

The system includes a 16-channel digital audio processor/equalizer to fine-tune all of the speakers to the room's acoustical characteristics. Four of those channels were for the subwoofers alone in order to work out the standing wave resonances.
 

The existing one-inch acoustical material was removed and replaced by a thicker Dimension4 Sonata acoustical tuning system from MSR, which includes absorbers, diffusers, and bass traps.

This is a room where the original architectural plan could have been a complete failure from a sound, picture and background noise point of view. Through diligent work by the integrator and acoustical consultant, the client and architect were educated on the benefits of proper engineering and accepted a reconstruction of portions of the room. As a result, this is now a world-class home cinema.


Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Home Theater Has Come Out of the Cave

Welcome to the Fun Room

 High PointsThink beyond the theater boxGreat entertainment can be in nearly any spaceNew technology provides more flexibilityNew design solutions open the door for Interior Designers Overview Good news! With the latest technologies, we can move past the dark and secluded home theaters of the late 20th century! No more man caves isolated from the rest of the house. No more rows of theater seats formally lined up, as if ready for battle with action heroes. Imagine even having a glass wall or window so we can stay connected to the rest of the world? Instead of just a "Home Theater", we want a "Fun Room". But, and this is a big but, can we still have all of this and a great cinematic experience?

The answer is Yes, and this article demonstrates how to deliver on these requests.  The project in this example won Best Home Cinema Level II at the 2017 CEDIA Expo. Most people are not familiar with CEDIA (Consumer Electronics Design and Installation As…

THE GRIMANI FILES: Bringing Life to a Comatose Home Theater

This client was referred to us by the integrator, who completed this installation about 10 years ago. The room was a dedicated three-row home theater in an upscale neighborhood of Detroit. All the gear was state-of-the-art for its time - from the studio-grade speakers, to the professional HD video projection system. But the surround decoder finally gave up the ghost after several years of faithful service. The client heard that Dolby Atmos® was the latest thing, so he sourced a new processor. He expected it to be an automatic upgrade, but wasn’t aware that he also needed to add speakers for the Top and Wide locations. At any rate, it was time to install, configure, and tune the system for the new processor. I took the job and carved out two days - right before Christmas - for a quick jaunt from my temperate San Francisco Bay Area home to frigid Detroit. (Who doesn't like a little cold for the holidays?) While planning the trip, I found out that the system didn’t include any equalizat…

Fun Room Details

In Deep Thank you for reading the high level article, now we will go into a detailed explanation of this project. This blog expands on the details from the "Home Theater Has Come Out of the Cave" article.

The integration firm responsible for building this masterpiece is Audio Images of Tustin California. Our designs and engineering is only as good as the implementation and AudioImages came through on every detail.


The Room Shell The physical issues that needed to be dealt with to accomplish these goals dictated a few design solutions:


Sound Isolation The room had to be decoupled from the Great Room that is located directly above it. This prevents the sound leakage from disturbing the adults. Decoupling loosely means to build resilient wall and floor-ceiling structures with little to no connections to the house’s framing structures. The purpose is to limit every contact point that could mechanically transfer sound energy and interfere with daily use of the rooms.


Ceilings in …

Performance Media Industries, Ltd.

61 Galli Drive, Suite B. Novato, CA 94949, USA
[T] (415) 883-1476
[F] (415) 883-8147