Client's Brief : This bespoke home cinema was built from a bare shell in the basement of an existing property. The client wanted something that would combine the best a modern home cinema could offer but have the look of a throwback movie theatre from his childhood days... This was achieved by combining today's tubing and cable network techniques and applying an acute attention to detail to the overall look and aesthetics. The client was very hands on in every aspect of the project so everything had to be perfect from the sound dampening and fabrication of the cinema structure to the audio-video specification, the colour schemes and the choice of different materials used.
Our Solution : Previously the basement had been occupied by gym equipment but due to the size of the area a second space was created within it. The idea was to condense the gym into two thirds of the space with an added zone of audio and install a newly built area as a designated entertaining room of approximately 4.5m x 10m. The stud walls were constructed and lined with materials that reduce noise externally & light pollution internally.
This new area is primarily a cinema, but it is also used as a social focal point for the house where the client can entertain guests from behind their own bar. They can also choose between watching the action on a large projection screen or on a 32" TV screen at the bar end of the room. We were given a very clear idea of what the room would look like, the decor being in the style of an 'old picture house' but with a modern twist and we worked alongside the interior designers at Ambience Home Design so the the client's ideas could become a reality. We then designed the system and managed the build to meet the client's overall high expectations.
We included a 2.7m wide fixed acoustically transparent projector screen so the centre speaker could be hidden behind while the projector is installed in the coved ceiling detail. Curtains cover the fixed screen when not in use and retract automatically when the projector is activated, giving that extra 'cinema' feel. When watching a film the lighting dims down as the image appears, only leaving a dimmed effect on the steps should anyone need to get up during the action. There are six leather reclining armchairs placed on two tiers to give an uninterrupted view from any viewing position.
Floor-standing speakers are used for the front left and right channels, with in-wall speakers installed for the rears. This ensures that they do not encroach on the walkways or the space at the rear of the entertainment room. A subwoofer completes the 5.1 surround sound set up.
As the room is multi-purpose it was important to use the lighting to transform the room from entertaining mode into a high end cinema experience.
The bar works as an independent zone so it is possible to entertain without having to start the main system or choose to have one video source on the main screen with a different one on the television. All of the components with the exception of the DVD player were houare in a metal framed rack located in the adjoining utility room..
Client's comments : From what was there to now you would scarcely it believe possible. This has been a true transformation of the space. We are still blown away with the results and have had many friends comment on just how much enjoyment we must get from it.
The Crestron control system performs brilliantly. It is great to see how the different parts of the installation combine to completely change the whole feel of the room... and on start up of a film I still get goose bumps... Every detail has been well thought out and executed so there are no arguments on who sits where which is a relief and the bar area comes into its own on the odd occasion!