Ash's Garage Nirvana.....

Ash2341

Active Member
A little thread on the evolution of my Home Cinema Nirvana…….

Hi all. I have been a member on here for a few years now, lurking away and reading all the great builds on here, and thought it’s high time I started a thread of my own for my build. I have learned a lot from all the brilliant projects on here so far, the quality is amazing and I hope to replicate some of it with my small project.

We are currently converting the garage into my study and home cinema area, and hopefully as the title suggests, it will be my small slice of home cinema nirvana….but we shall see once it’s all done! I have always wanted a dedicated room and I am lucky enough to have the opportunity to use my garage for it. It will be a tad cosy and nowhere near as large as some on here, but it will hopefully work for us.

I am going to basically use this thread as a build log for documenting my thoughts, and also as a sounding board for my ideas and plans, so I am sorry if it becomes a massive rant….hope it doesn’t get too boring!

Some history (if you are interested) on how we got here, with some photos of my ‘old’ and current set-up. I have been interested in home cinema since the days of pro-logic, I remember even starting out connecting up the home stereo in the late 80’s to the TV and getting some sweet stereo sound (it wasn’t real stereo, just mono but louder and out of 2 big speakers!) and I was hooked. Fast forward to the 90’s and we bought a Sony pro-logic surround setup and then it was surround heaven. I remember buying one of the first DVD players (I think it was the Panasonic A100) and then performing the multi-region mod on it pretty much immediately…that was fretful as I had to open up the player and solder on some wires and thought I may just actually wreck my fancy DVD player…thankfully all went well and then it was region 1 DVD’s ahoy!

Over time I kept up with the various upgrades through the DVD years, changing bits here and there like the AV receiver, plasma TV, speakers etc.

I then managed to renovate the house and that ‘spare’ room became my own home cinema. This is where the bug really hit and the projector era came into play. The room was in a Victorian semi-detached house and it was approximately 4x5 meters, with good 10 foot high ceilings. The room was solely for home cinema, so I managed to have a drop down screen, 10 feet across, a black ceiling, kept all the wiring hidden as much as possible, and it was great! The acoustics were a bit off, but once I put up some acoustic panels up on the walls it was much better. I bought an anamorphic lens and moved to a constant height set-up by buying another ‘all-black’ screen which was mounted in front of the first screen so it could be masked off to 2.35, which worked really well.

Apologies for the rubbish pics, they were taken ages ago and my memory is not the most accurate!

Originally with my 600 series B&W speakers before the renovation circa 2005:

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After the screen and renovation:

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Quick photo of the ‘dual’ screen masking system:

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It was all controlled with my trusty Pronto TSU9800 which took awhile to program but worked pretty well. It also controlled the lights via IR as I had a Lutron GRX-3106 Grafik Eye installed at the renovation stage. This gave me 6 zones of lighting around the room which was pretty neat.

Pronto remote which I still have:

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Hope you are all still reading and not too bored by now….to be continued….

Ash
 

Ash2341

Active Member
Over the years I upgraded to a full 7.2 system with some 802D’s up front and the HTM2D centre, with 805S and 803D rears. I also had 2 SVS PB13 Ultra’s covering the low end of the scale. The B&W speakers were all powered by a full set of Parasound JC-1 monoblocks. Now they gave off a LOT of heat….it was pretty much unbearable in there during the summer months, but I didn’t need any heating though which was good. I ran all these with a Denon AVP-A1HD pre-pro and a JVC HD100 with a Schneider anamorphic lens for the 2.35:1 CIH video aspect.

I also bought some electric recliners second-hand from the USA, which had D-Box tech in-built which was very exciting….though my wife isn’t a massive fan! What D-Box does is match the action on screen with movements made by the seats. This is done by 4 ‘actuators’ in each corner of the seat. These enable the seats to lift up and down, pitch forward/backwards and side to side in relation to the ‘motion’ portrayed on the screen. D-Box ‘code’ certain films and you download the films to the controller which is then attached to an audio output on whatever source you are playing, so the controller then knows what film you are watching and how to ‘sync’ to the right film etc. They really do make you ‘feel the movie’ but it isn’t for everyone. I love it though! The seats are really heavy though, and shook the room below when in use so I placed them on some isolation pads to tame the rumble elsewhere in the house. After the dual PB13’s, this was probably a step too far in annoying the neighbours as it was a semi-detached house. The room had no ‘soundproofing’ whatsoever so it leaked all over the place. I didn’t really consider ‘soundproofing’ all that much back then as the room just evolved into a dedicated area, but I have learned a lot about sound isolation since then, but more of that later.

Some photo’s of that set-up:

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All was good with the set-up; I tried some acoustic treatments on the walls to tame some ringing etc. This made a HUUUUGGE difference to the sound and I finally recognised how important the ‘room’ itself is to how sound is reproduced. My attempts at treatments were extremely basic and limited in scientific placement though. You can see some of the treatments on the photos.

Then about 5 years ago we moved to a more rural setting into a 3 bedroom bungalow. My home cinema heaven was now non-existent. We sold a lot of the AV toys like the amps and moved all the remaining equipment into our new lounge, and it has been setup there until now as a halfway house between home cinema and lounge. I still had most of the AV equipment which ‘fit’ our old room, but is a bit squashed in our current house. I left the screen at our old place, and bought a smaller 8 ft screen as a temporary ‘fix’. I even managed to space it out so it dropped in front of the TV but as it was meant to be temporary I never got round to hiding the wood that holds it up. It is a pretty cheap screen I managed to get from eBay/Amazon which has broken once already. It has been up there for nearly 5 years now! Obviously neither I nor my wife were really happy with that be honest, but it served a purpose which was to keep the big screen action going! Then we had a little girl, who takes up space as they do, and now we are a little bit cramped in our bungalow. Also she has found out how to get into the equipment cupboard under the TV so there is another reason to move it all (my daughter that is…my wife really doesn’t care what’s in there!).

What the ‘lounge’ in our current bungalow looks like now…..

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Phew, nearly there…..

Ash
 
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Ash2341

Active Member
So with all that out of the way, onwards to the future plans. We have an attached double garage, mainly single skin brick with a flat roof which was ripe for conversion. We decided to convert the garage and move all my AV equipment and study ‘stuff’ in there, and with that we would gain some more usable space in the house. Therefore the ‘lounge’ will become a proper lounge without a huge oversized set-up. We have now had planning permission granted to extend into the attic, and also to increase the ground floor, but we will probably do that in a couple of year’s time. Until then, we are converting the garage space.

THE PLAN.

I intend to keep using my current equipment which is all a few years old now. I intend to upgrade to 4K, and Atmos/DTS:X in the near future so will wire up for that eventuality. Therefore it all has to fit in the new conversion, as well as a study!

Room:

I will be converting the garage to a full ‘room in a room’ construction to maximise sound isolation. This will be done by the builders who have been working here for awhile on other projects so they know what I am like! This conversion will be complicated enough for me to understand so having people who are willing to listen to what is needed and learn how to do things will be a bonus. I know it’s impossible to fully ‘soundproof’ a room, and that it is best to think of it as isolation, and that this seems to be the best way to obtain the most isolation. I have done a lot of research into this over the last year or two planning it all so it gets done properly. There is a book by Rod Gervais called ‘Home Recording Studio, Build It Like The Pros’ which seems to be the bible on this sort of stuff which has been a major help. Other sites like thesoundproofingcompany.com and AVSforum in the USA have been a treasure trove of info, as well as gearslutz and johnlsayers which is mainly about studio building. The same principles apply if you are trying to build a home cinema to contain sound, and to also keep the outside world out too.

The garage is just over 5m x 5m and is currently attached to the house on the side, with a utility room extension directly behind it. The utility built about a year ago, but it is still ongoing, we just need to get it tiled and kitted out. The access to the garage is through here. The part of the house the garage is attached to on the side is our bedroom, so this will be the main reason to keep it a sound isolated as possible from this room.

A ‘room in a room’ construction basically means new ‘inner walls’ and a totally independent ceiling all within the garage itself. This will be totally decoupled from the original garage walls and roof. The idea is that a 2-leaf system will be in play here with the original wall the outer leaf, and the new independent wall inside, the inner leaf. The idea is that you have a MASS-SPRING-MASS system. The mass will be the original brick layer outer skin as the outer leaf, and then the new inner layer of OSB/plasterboard as the inner leaf. The spring part is the air gap between the 2 layers. The larger the better, within reason! This gap will be filled with some Rockwool RWA45, which is 45kg/m2 in density. You can go higher but I have read that this is best for low frequency isolation.

Soundproof wall pic I found online and plan to base room on:

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The single skin wall is brick which we will batten out with 25mm studs on DPC strips. Then we will have a breather membrane (Tyvek Supro) attached to the studs all round the walls. The floor will have a DPC sheet laid on it as it is just a concrete base, and then the new walls/floor will go on this. Next to the breather membrane we will build a frame out of 4x2’s just so we can fit the 100mm Rockwool insulation. Then I plan to have a1-2” gap, and then build another stud frame with 4x2’s for the inner leaf. This frame will be as decoupled as possible from the outer leaf, and will form the shell of the room. Then we will layer on a vapour barrier (Dupont Airguard) around the walls and ceiling. This will enable the room to breathe, while being totally air sealed.

Then we will be planning on using 1 layer of 22mm OSB, and then 2 layers of 15mm plasterboard for the walls and ceiling. I will be using a sound dampening compound called Green Glue between the layers on the walls and ceiling. Green Glue isn’t a glue, it’s there to attenuate and damp the vibrations as the sound travels through the wall layers. It is best to use 2 tubes per sheet of material/plasterboard, but as I am doing 3 layers, I have read that 1 tube per sheet is best, as it will be used on 2 layers etc. This is hopefully going to be right as it will be very expensive otherwise as Green Glue costs quite a bit! One layer will go on, with a 1/4 “ gap around the edges connecting to the floor and ceiling, and the corners. This will be filled with a 10mm foam backer rod and then sealed with acoustic caulk. The idea is that the walls don’t really touch the ceiling or floor and vice versa. This will be done for all 3 layers.

Photo of plasterboard caulking etc:










We were going to keep the original garage flat roof but after inspection it was leaking badly, and the height was far too low. It also had a steel beam running down the middle which the joists were resting on so this needed to go. We had to change our plans and put in a new roof, which would give us a bit more headroom for the independent ceiling etc. This will be a ‘warm’ roof construction with 120mm Celotex insulation, and an EPDM waterproof covering. The EPDM will need a thin layer of plywood which is a compromise I will mention later with regards to sound isolation. The Celotex will be next to useless for sound isolation, so the ‘deck’ on the the roof joists will be beefed up. We will be having a top deck of 22mm OSB, and then 2 more layers of the same 22mm OSB in between the joists. These will all have Green Glue between, and all joints and edges will be sealed with acoustic caulk. The deck is on all new joists, which will have to be bolted/ attached via a wall-plate to the brick skin etc. We plan on using 9x3’s to span the garage. Originally we had 5x2’s but they only held up the chipboard and felt.

The new independent room ceiling joists will be running ‘in-between’ the actual roof joist to give us some headroom, but they will not touch the roof joists at all. They will be resting on the inner leaf stud frame, which will be beefed up at appropriate places. The roof joists, and ceiling joists are all going at 400mm centres, and the wall studs are going to be at 600m centres.

Pic of independent stud ceiling:




The floor will have 50mm of insulation as it’s the largest I can get away with to keep the height of the room manageable as it will be quite cramped in there once it’s all done. This will be laid on the DPM, and then I plan on 2 layers of 22mm OSB as the floor, again with Green Glue between the layers of OSB. The floor will again be kept ¼” away for the walls, the edge filled with backer rod and caulked. I am not laying down a rubber mat under the plywood as the floor will have a timber frame for the plywood to be screwed onto, so it will be coupled to the concrete floor anyway.

The whole room will be sealed at every opportunity, with any holes for cables sealed up as tightly as possible.

The doorway into the room will be a double door bank vault type construction. I plan on using a firedoor blank and then adding 2 layers of OSB to it, stepped in each time with the appropriate seals to make it as heavy as possible to help with the sound isolation. I will need to buy some norsound perimeter seals, as well as a couple of drop-down seals for the bottom of both doors. I will have one for the inner leaf, and another door for the outer leaf heading in from the utility room. This is where the walls will have to be coupled but it is only by a bit of framing to hide the gap so hopefully won’t compromise it too much.

What I plan to follow, but with 2 doors, one on each leaf:









I have had to have a window in there, first for a bit of light to the study, and also as an escape route in case of fire etc. Due to time constraints I have had to unfortunately put in a UPVC window which is rubbish for sound isolation. This is because the frame itself if hollow. We will try and fill it as much as we can, and I will aim for acoustic glass too. This is the one main compromise I think we will have, but as it is in the study area it may not be too problematic. The window looks out onto our side access with the next house over 10m away so it may be a non-issue in the end. Again we will have to couple the leaves a little here for the window reveal.

The original garage doors will be dismantled and taken away. We will block them up and make it look like there are garage doors there on the outside, so it will still look like a garage. Plan is to line the brick opening with DPC and then fit an outer stud frame that will have 3 layers of 22mm OSB with Green Glue between the layers. This will then have a breather membrane fitted on the outside with an air gap, battened out and then clad with some form of timber to resemble a garage door. Then we will basically count this as an extension of the single skin outer brick layer, and continue on the inside as with the rest of the room interior above. We might be able to fit some extra Celotex in the frame as I have some 100mm stuff left over from the utility room extension.

HVAC: With a ‘sealed’ and sound isolated room there is the small problem of getting air into the room. I have got a Daikin MHVR unit which will be mounted somewhere in the room (or outside) to provide fresh air into the room, and to extract the stale air. It is a heat recovery unit so will hopefully work well in here. The idea is that it will provide all the fresh air we will need in the room. I have made sure it will be up to the task to have enough flow and capacity to change the air in the room over 6 times an hour or so, as when the doors are shut it will be the only mode of ventilation, unless I open the window! This unit needs 8” vent piping to work, so this will eat into my room a lot so careful planning on where to position the vents will be needed. I will also need to penetrate the double wall construction for the intake and extract of air. This will of course need to be done with the minimal of bridging/coupling of the double leaf setup. My idea will be to make a couple of plywood ‘tunnels’ that go through the inner stud wall and then sit on the brick outer wall. They will be heavy in themselves so they will need supporting, and once they are ‘in the room’ they will have to be connected somehow so there will be a compromise in the soundproofing efforts here too unfortunately. I will have a good think once we get to building it how this can be minimised though. I originally planned for the unit t ogo inside the room, and maybe site it behind the screen, but it really is massive so I think it will have to be enclosed outside the room. This sort of makes it easier as the baffling to contain the noise can be partially installed outside the room to save space.

Baffling pic I found online:





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The AV equipment, and server PC etc will all generate a lot of heat that I hope the MVHR unit will be able to extract well enough. I am not sure it will to be honest so I am planning on adding an A/C unit, probably a split unit but haven’t fully decided yet as they are quite costly. I will need to plan ahead though as I will need to put in the pipes and cabling in early on as these will also need to breach the sound isolation too. Normally the indoor unit connects to the outdoor unit and it all looks quite neat but I need to plan where it will be sited and how it all works.

Now before you say it, yes there are some compromises in the sound isolation parts of this build. With UK construction we have cavity walls with ties and insulation, so the walls that the garage is attached to the house with will be a cavity wall. This is the rear and side aspect of the garage, the rest is single skin. This is where I will have to make do with the side effects of a ‘triple leaf’ effect, and there isn’t anything I can do about that. The roof will equally have a small triple leaf, as the uppermost layer of OSB/plywood under the rubber membrane will be the third leaf. Even the ‘fake garage doors will count towards a third leaf so another compromise. Again this is unavoidable but hopefully this will be a minor issue in the end. I am not aiming for a totally isolated room, but aiming for the best we can get considering the current building we have to work within.

Electrical Considerations: As this was the garage, originally the whole house consumer unit was here. We are planning to further extend the bungalow by building into the roof space, and rear, so thinking ahead I had the consumer unit moved into the new utility room extension. This is directly behind the garage but we had to get ALL the wiring extended from the attic space into the new extension, and also fit ALL the possible future wiring into it as well. That took a lot of planning, and I am hoping I didn’t forget anything! What this meant was that I needed power for the garage, and I am planning on a little more than just having a 32A ring main in there. While all the electrical work was being done, I ‘upgraded’ our lounge power supply where the home cinema currently resides. I had an extra feed and consumer unit moved to the other side of the house where that room is located, and where the shed is too. The ‘old’ consumer unit was placed there and then I had 3 new dedicated circuits installed just for the AV equipment. I know there is a whole sub-set of fairy talk on power supply, dedicated circuits, size of circuit, and even what cable to use but as it was relatively easy to get done I thought what the hell and whacked in 3 lots of 6mm ring mains in to the room, each on its own RCD. The electrician at this point had already thought I was mad, but now just says ‘what do you need and where!’. This leads me to the garage, I am having the tails split and having a dedicated consumer unit installed in the new room. These cables to supply it will obviously be caulked and sealed so not to ruin the soundproofing efforts elsewhere. This consumer unit will now end up supplying the AV area with it’s own dedicated circuitry, and also my study with it’s own set of circuits. I will also need power for lighting, and other things like HVAC requirements so this will be good for that too. All the electrical work will be done by the electrician so can be signed off etc.


Now onto the more interesting part as it’s about what the room will look like etc! The garage will be split into the main cinema area, an AV equipment area, and a study. I am inclined to make the study more enclosed so I can keep my computer/server noise out of the main cinema room, but will see how much of a problem it is later.

Here is photo of the layout I sketched up on paper. It’s a work in progress at the moment as lots might change but the general idea should be there.

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I really want to make it a dedicated home cinema so the idea is to have it as dark as possible, but unfortunately a black ceiling and walls might not be to my wife’s tastes, so dark colours it will be. It will be dark enough though!

Equipment rack in separate area: The AV area will be where I will keep all the equipment. I plan on having it all stored in a Middle Atlantic rack, but these are expensive, so I am going to use my ‘old’ racks for now and build the opening so I can ‘upgrade’ later. These racks are open glass ones, with a metal frame that can be stacked, so will hopefully leave enough airflow around all the components. The AV stuff will be on show in the ‘foyer’ part of the room but will not be distracting or have any glare onto the screen. I will hopefully have this area closed off to avoid any noise coming out from it as I might out my server pc and/or my HTPC in there. The heat will need to be extracted somehow but it will be large enough to passively cool down some of the components. I will see what I can do with the extra run for the HVAC but it will need to be cool in there as amp and pre-pro’s tend to run hot!

Wiring: I will of course have to get all sorts of wiring in from the AV area to the stage and PJ area for speakers, amps, video, D-Box, tactile transducers and everything else that entails with this mad hobby. I have had a LOT of Cat6 cabling run from the loft already into this room to facilitate multi-room video if I go that route in the future, and for network access too. I have also run some coax for SKY/Freesat etc. Also thoguth about HDMI runs which will go into the loft in case I move some equipment up there in the future for another Node 0 area for the rest of the house when we extend. I have done as much wiring as I can think of now as when it’s in I won’t be able to add anything later due to the sound isolation construction, hope I haven’t forgotten anything!

Room size: The final home cinema part of the room will be just over 3m wide and around 5m long, and just over 2m in height, so it will be cosy in there. The length will be eaten up with the stage and screen so it will feel a lot smaller once everything is packed in there.

Screen area: I intend to upgrade my screen and go for the full AT effect with all the speakers behind it. I also want to have a TV there for an easy life when the PJ isn’t needed, so the screen will have to be a retractable one. I am moving towards a SeymourAV AT screen but haven’t bought one yet. The screen will be just under 3m wide, with a 2.35 AR as I am aiming for a CIH screen for my anamorphic lens etc.

Stage: I plan on building a raised platform/stage behind the screen for the LCR speakers, and the subs to sit on. This will have the effect of making the room look more like a dedicated room and will help with the isolation. The problem we have is that I like bass. Lots of bass. If a film has bass, I like to FEEL it. Unfortunately this is that hardest part to contain if you are truly trying to isolate a room. Once the walls and floor are done, I will have a stage constructed out of 6x2 timber (maybe 4x2?) and then it will have 2 layers of 22mm OSB with green glue between the layers as it’s top. It will be lined with plastic and filled with dry play sand. The whole stage will be sat on a rubber mat to keep it decoupled as much as possible from the floor. It will also not touch the walls either, so will be built a few inches away. This means I will have a small channel for wires/cables to run behind it too. The idea is that the subs/speakers energy will have to move all that weight/sand first before being transferred to the concrete sub base of the garage floor. Concrete is a good sound conductor so this will hopefully minimise it to some extent. I don’t envisage it stopping it all, but some reduction in the LF transfer to the rest of the house is better than nothing.

Diagram of what I intend to do with the stage or something similar:

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The rear wall of the stage area will have some absorption panels on it. The retractable screen will hopefully be installed so that it drops just in front of the stage. I like the idea that all you can see is the screen, with all equipment out of sight. Hopefully with the stage the screen can drop to just around stage height and so it will block all the speakers and TV etc.

Room Acoustics: I hope to incorporate some acoustic treatment into the room, and I will be re-using some foam from the previous room etc. Once the room is built I can work on that.

Seating: I have my 2 D-Box seats, which are each 2 seaters, and they both electrically recline too. The will be placed side by side near the rear of the room. I am considering a riser for them, in case I want to put in another row for the rare occasion we have more people. I am not sure that I will have the space though, as this would mean the viewing distance becomes quite small for the front row. I will probably put in a small riser and see what fits nearer the time. I will also fill the riser with sand as I will be wiring up for some rear subs if I get some more later. The D-Box seats will need power, and also some Cat5/6 ethernet for the signal to be relayed from the HEMC processor unit.

Lighting: I have a 6 zone Lutron Grafik Eye unit I want to use, so I will wire in enough for these zones to be used. I love lighting effects and the way it can be dimmed so will have a few ‘scenes’ and zones set up for the room. Depending on final height of room I will have a soffit around the perimeter of the room to hide the downlights, and to possibly have a ropelight for extra uplighting. The size will depend on downlight depth etc. This soffit may or may not hold the ATMOS speakers, I haven’t decided on that part yet. I hope to have some lighting in the stage area too, and maybe on the riser, but we will see once the room gets nearer that time of construction.

Photo of lighting plan:

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Soffit construction plan (I am not using clips but you get the idea):

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Star ceiling: I am toying with the idea of one and will see if I can get one to fit. I see that you can buy them in ready-made panels and I think we may have a 2m x 3m ceiling to work with so it may work. I am planning on having power ready for it, and to build the soffit with it in mind. The bonus with a star ceiling is that I can get away with a black ceiling as that’s how they are designed and my wife actually likes the look of them which is good.

Projector: I will use my current JVC HD100 and lens as the main PJ, but I do have an Acer 3D PJ too which I will install as well. I intend to upgrade to a fancy 4K one in the future but with allthe changing standards of HDR, HLG, Dolby Vision etc I think I will wait awhile. Plus they are mega expensive at the moment. I think the JVC is absolutely brilliant and it has been in good use over time, I just changed over the bulb recently so it’s got a good lot of hours left on it just yet. I will try and see if I can build a box in the soffit for the PJ and try to hide it a little, but it may just end up being a glorified shelf. I am toying with a hush box as it does make some fan noise, but I don’t think I will have the space unfortunately. Once the room is ready I can decide on that, as it will need to be ventilated too.

Audio: I am going to wire up for ATMOS/DTS:X, and will plan on 4-6 ceiling speakers, and also wire up for wides as well as rear backs too in case I want to full monty when I upgrade my processor. At the moment the most we can have with ‘normal’ AVR’s is 4 heights, but in the future I am sure there will be provision for more. I definitely can’t afford the likes of Trinnov and Datasat but I can dream!

Video: I don’t have any 4K sources, or any way to watch them either but I am planning on upgrading at some point. I will use all my current 1080p gear for now.

List of my AV equipment going into the new room copied from my signature:

Denon AVP-A1HDA

JVC HD100 PJ with Schneider 2.35 Lens

Acer H9600BD 3D PJ with Prismasonic 2.35 Lens

8’-10' wide 2.35:1 screen planned

Lumagen Radiance XE Video Processor

Pioneer KRP-600A

D-Box seats x 2 with HEMC controller

Crowson Tactile Transducers for both seats with Crowson Amplifier

Parasound Halo JC-1 Monoblock Amplifier

Cinepro 2K63 Amplifier

Parasound Halo A23 x 2 Amplifiers

B&W 802D Mains

B&W HTM2D Centre

B&W SCMS Rears and Sides

SVS PB13Ultra x 2 Subwoofers

SVS ASEQ Subwoofer EQ

Oppo BDP93 Blu-ray player

Dune BD Prime 3

SKY HD 2Tb

Google Chromecast

Classe CDP-300 DVD/CD player

Parasound D3 DVD/CD player

PS3

XBOX 360

Nintendo Wii

HTPC with XBMC in progress!

Philips Pronto TSU9800 Remote Control

Server PC with approx 19TB storage

Mains: Isotek Titan x 2, Isotek Nova x 2, Power inspired AC regenerator AG1500 and AG500


Right, so I think that’s about it, hope I didn’t forget anything! Sorry for the long post, hope I haven’t bored you with my plans and inane ranting…….just trying to document my thoughts on here to see if it’s any help to others who might want to do a similar project.

I will post up some pics as and when they get done. Currently we are nearly done with the framing part and are nearly ready to start dividing the room up for the main room and study, and then we can start the plasterboarding. I will post up some construction pics up soon.

I am sure I will need some help from you all at some point too on how things need to be done so thanks in advance for my rants and stupid questions!

Thanks for reading this far…..

Cheers!

Ash
 
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Peter Parker

Distinguished Member
Looks pretty concise and well researched - only thing I will say is that a guy called Granroth (IIRC) did some testing with a stage that he tried as empty, filled with fibre glass and then filled with sand, and found no appreciable difference in his particular set up (over on avsforum). If you want to have a read do a search or I can try and dig out the link for you.

After that, Erskine Design said they no longer fill risers with just sand, but a special sand/sawdust combination and that works. Of course the combination is top secret so unless you get DE to design that for you, I would consider just filling the stage (and riser) with fibreglass unless you feel you really want sand.
 
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Ash2341

Active Member
Wow!

I will be watching this thread eagerly, looks fantastically well planned.

I suspect it will look amazing too.

Also, I think Green Glue is available in buckets now and is cheaper to buy that way.

Hi Thresherinc, thanks for the kind words! I hope it will look good when it's done, I feel I have spent a looooong time going through the details so it better! Yeah I was looking into the buckets of Green glue, but I couldn't find it muc hcheaper than the separate tubes when I bought my first lot awhile ago. I will need some more soon so will look into it again unless anyone knows of a good supplier? I bought my other tubes from eBay.

Looks pretty concise and well researched - only think I will say is that a guy called Granroth (IIRC) did some testing with a stage that he tried as empty, filled with fibre glass and then filled with sand, and found no appreciable difference in his particular set up (over on avsforum). If you want to have a read do a search or I can try and dig out the link for you.

After that, Erskine design said they no longer fill risers with just sand, but a special sand/sawdust combination and that works. Of course the combination is top secret so unless you get DE to design that for you, I would consider just filling the stage (and riser) with fibreglass unless you feel you really want sand.

Hi Gary, thanks for the tip. I have had a good look over there on avsforum and saw that there was some debate on stage/riser filling. Good to know the info you provided as I dind't see that yet....not sure I will be getting the fabled Erskine to design my room though! I wonder what sort of ratio he was thinking....I can stockpile some sawdust as there is loads from all the cut timber! I really only decided on sand as it is mainly a way to isolate the subs and speakers that are planned to sit on the stage. As the garage floor is concrete I imagine it's pretty good at transferring the Low's to the rest of the house. A 'decoupled' stage filled with sand so it has loads of mass to dissipate the energy of my subs was the plan but I am open to using insulation as I have a bit leftover anyway. I was under the impression that a fully filled stage with sand was preferable for this reason, but if it's just to make it not sound like a drum then insulation filled is fine? I was thinking of sand filled riser too as I may add subs there later, and the d-box seats with crowson tactile transducers as well sure do make a good rumbling so again isolation is why I was going that way really. I haven't decided on that part yet, or even how high to have them both as head-room will be tight, especially for the rear riser so I may not even have one.

Thanks both for the tips. Much appreciated....this is still a work in progress and there is so much more to do before we even get to the fun part of the interior bits with the equipment!

Cheers

Ash
 

Rob5ft19in

Active Member
What a great post!! Yet another example of a thread that makes me want moving-house to hurry the hell up so that I can create my own space in a similar vein! LOVED the evolution photos!! Definitely another thread for me to follow closely!
 

Ash2341

Active Member
What a great post!! Yet another example of a thread that makes me want moving-house to hurry the hell up so that I can create my own space in a similar vein! LOVED the evolution photos!! Definitely another thread for me to follow closely!

Thanks! I thought I might as well post up my 'old' home cinema setup as I never managed to do so 10 years ago :). It was always a work in progress though and a massive learning curve with regards to acoustics. I tried a lot of ways to tame the boom with REW and using things like a BFD for eq and that was all fun back then....I don't have time to do all that tinkering now with a toddler terrorising my every waking minute :clap::confused::clap:

Are you planning to move soon? When we moved out I always had an eye for a large space to have a home cinema, but obviously it had to take a back seat to the rest of the house. We do have planning permission for a basement which will be the final place for all the AV stuff, but we won't build that for awhile. Hunting for a house is one of the most exciting yet frustrating experiences around as it seems there is always something that 'needs doing' whatever you buy. Having the space to extend/change was the reason we bought this place, as a bungalow was never on our 'want' list :D

I have edited my first couple of posts as some of the pics didn't seem to show up, so hopefully they are all there now. I use photobucket and paste the links in, but sometimes they didn't work, but other times it did?!? Ah well, hope it's working now.

I will post up some more pics of the build so far later on. In the meantime I have decided to go for some A/C in there as it will get pretty warm in there. This morning, with just some insulation in it was quite warm, and that was with a totally unheated room. From experience I think it will be too hot there in the summer so have plunged for a Daikin Emura II split system. It will hopefully look good and work it's wonders with as little noise as possible. We have run a pipe through the exterior wall for all the necessary piework/cabling for this already, so once they turn up they can be fitted ready for an A/C guy to do the full install later. The condensor unit sits outside, and then the internal unit is connected by 2 copper pipes (both insulated), a drain pipe, and the interconnection wiring to the condensor unit. Again, this is a 'breach' in the sound isolation so it will be suitable sealed and caulked. The pipes/wiring will not go straight through both leaves but rather bend after the outer leaf, and then enter the inner leaf at a different point, so not to have a 'straight through' hole for sound/air to leak.

Anyway, thanks for the interest so far, hope to update with some pics soon.

Cheers

Ash
 

Ash2341

Active Member
A couple of pics of the garage when we started.

View to the front from the utility room:

DSC_5230_zps1k4kujve.jpg


View to the rear from the doors:

DSC_5231_zpsfbnloyzf.jpg


You can see in the photo above the original location of the consumer unit at the back of the garage.
The main incoming cables were uprated and moved to the new extension room, with an all new 100A supply. The original was 60A, and worked ok in that it didn’t blow, but it has been there since the 60’s so I thought we might as well upgrade it all and have a good supply for the house.

Another front view:

DSC_5232_zpshdv634r3.jpg


View into the ‘new’ extension/utility room:

DSC_5234_zpsydnbitti.jpg


The garage was where our original utility ‘room’ resided. By room I mean it was a partitioned off area where we had the washing machine and dryer, the freezer and also the oil boiler. I decided to have the boiler moved as it was large and loud:

DSC_5235_zpsa9go2jnv.jpg




As you can see in the photos we have a beam crossing the garage to hole the roof up. This was really low and wouldn’t do as it would impede on head height throughout the room, so it was planned to remove it. The original rafters were also only 5” deep and some were pretty rotten, so we thought it would be best to remove them.

So we had to put in a new flat roof as the old one was totally knackered. It is about 50-60 years old, and had been patched up etc, but was leaking all over the place so it had to be removed. It was in no shape to be used for all the planned sound isolation strategies. Unfortunately we had so much stuff still in the garage which had nowhere to go so we decided to put a new roof above the old one, and then remove it from underneath. It is to be of a ‘warm roof’ construction, with the insulation on top of the deck, which is laid on top of the rafters.

Here’s a few of the original roof:

DSC_3734_zpstxwmkyla.jpg



DSC_3737_zpsnoeyskne.jpg



DSC_3742_zpsarmlhtl8.jpg


It doesn’t look all that bad really but it wasn’t good enough to keep with what we were planning.

Some pics of the new roof structure going in:

DSC_5747_zps2zpmwntl.jpg


DSC_5749_zpscivb5yin.jpg


DSC_5748_zpsededpoy8.jpg


Photo showing the top layer of 22mm OSB 3 on the rafters.

DSC_5972_zpshcykbjqm.jpg


This shows the rafters going all the way over the external wall, they will be fastened to the wall with hangers. You can also see one of the old windows bricked up too.

To save height on the final roof level, I decided to build up the ‘mass’ of the roof by screwing 25mm battens on each side of the rafters to form a base and then we screwed down 2 extra layers of 22mm OSB between each rafter. Hope that makes sense? These layers all had green glue sandwiched between them. This then basically gave 3 layers of OSB for the roof deck. We went this route as we still had to work from above as the old roof was still up and it seemed easier this way. Ideally we would have just had lots of layers of OSB on top but we really were stuck for height so this was the only option. I did think about using Tecsound rubber matting between the layers but this was really expensive, and worked out a lot more than green glue. It does the same thing as green glue so I didn’t go down that route.

The uppermost layer between the rafters was about 1mm proud of them so that the final layer could be properly sealed up against it as if we were screwing them from below. All the joints in between the sheets, and the rafters etc were liberally sealed with acoustic caulk. We went through a LOT of tubes just for the roof!

Some photos that hopefully show this work in progress:

DSC_5975_zpsisfcvk10.jpg


DSC_5976_zpsnlomjn6n.jpg


DSC_5979_zps2vkzljpn.jpg


Nearly done with the roof deck…..

DSC_5982_zpsu3ol8dpo.jpg


Vapour barrier about to be laid and then just need to wait for the insulation:

DSC_5981_zpsznyswutx.jpg


In the next photo it shows the new window location, and the boiler house too:

DSC_5974_zps79fynvmu.jpg


Next part soon…..

Cheers

Ash
 
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Ash2341

Active Member
So a few questions while I am here before I get round to posting the next load of pictures.

I am going to cable up for 4 rears (sides and rears) and also 6 ceiling speakers. I have used QED silver anniversary XT (I think that's what it was called?) in the past for surround duties as it was small and discrete, but it cost quite as bit for a roll. Does anyone have any suggestions for a similar quality set of speaker cables I could use for the surrounds and Atmos/DTS:X in-ceiling speakers? I have seen people recommending van damme stuff?

Onto the placement of the in-ceiling speakers. I plan on building a soffit around the cinema section og the room, and hope to house the speakers in there. Reason behind this is if they are actually 'in-ceiling' they will compromise the sound isolated structure. The soffit is going to be within the 'soundproof' shell so shouldn't matter. I have seen the dolby diagrams and it seems that they are in line with the Front L/R speakers, or maybe just a little bit in from them. I would have thought they need to be more in the middle of the room than near the sides if you understand what I mean?

Using this as a guide:



Makes me think that if I have a wide soffit they could go in there and it would work well. It all depends on if I place my subs in the front corners, or if the L/R speakers are in the front corners I suppose?

I have a choice on whether I use some B&W Signature 7 NT speakers or some B&W CCM800 speakers for the ATMOS set. They are earmarked for another room later on but I could use them in here. Or I could use my B&W SCMS speakers and wall mount them to the edge of my soffits and point them downwards a little?

Has anyone used wall-mounted speakers as the top set in ATMOS, and how do they compare to having proper in-ceiling ones? I am veering towards the in-ceiling Sig7NT's in a wide soffit myself but wondered what others thought?

My sides on the 'base' level will probably be a little bit forward of the proposed seating area due to wall positioning which I think will be fine. I assume they will be in front on the ATMOS speakers a little but I could put the middle top ones in line with them as it will look more uniform that way.

What do people think then....cables and speakers?

Cheers

Ash
 

Peter Parker

Distinguished Member
My view on wire is that wire is wire and only the length of run and it's resistance should make you use a larger cable (so stick with pure copper 2.5mm sq or larger and you won't go wrong). I think someone once mentioned that provided the resistance of the cable is less than 5% of the resistance of the speaker, it should be fine.

If you want to pay more because it looks nicer then that might be worth it more than the sales pitch to promote it (bathed in Asses milk for a smoother sound..) because it's unlikely you'll hear a difference IMHO, but you will certainly see and prefer a good looking cable over another if it's in sight somewhere.

But that's just me and my tone deaf hearing. I'm sure some can hear massive differences, I'm just not one of them.

Atmos speaker placement - I tend to agree with you about placing them closer in than the left and right speakers - the commercial specs say they should be central between the center and each left and right speaker, so there does seem to be some leeway (if you google Atmos pdf you'll probably find the other doc).

I have a soffit like you describe, but around the listening position more than the whole room, and what I have done is use some very inexpensive speakers and placed 4 in a row for front height - two in line with the left and right as per the Dolby Atmos specs for home (as shown in the diagrams you supplied), and two in line with the center point between the center and the left and right so I have both recommendations in place to test with. I've yet to do this but hope to try it next week sometime. I may even get a switch box so I can change between the two quickly and easily. If that works with the front height speakers, I'll either do the same with the rear heights or move the existing rears in closer to match the fronts. My side surrounds are just above ear height and behind the listening position to try and give as much separation between them for a hopefully better 3D effect.
 

SeriousPigeon

Active Member
Hi,

I investigated and installed soundproofing methods and materials into my home cinema build (which is still ongoing).

First dedicated Home Cinema room

Whilst I was forced to scale back my sound proofing plans a bit, from what I had originally set out to do, I still did a fair amount of work to ensure that the room was acoustically isolated from the rest of the house.
When it came to the walls and ceilings I used www.soundstop.co.uk as the material supplier. I opted for the genie clip and rail system, using Tecsound membrane instead of green glue. The advantage with the membrane is that you can use it either by itself, with 1 layer of plasterboard or on MDF. Also you can get one side coated with contact adhesive for easier installation. I cannot recommend this stuff enough, it is just great.
Soundstop don't make any of the products themselves, they simply act as a middle man, but they do make it easier to order all the materials you need for the job.

I too will be installing a double door into the home cinema room. However, I am using Tecsound membrane on the internal fire door. The membrane is massively heavy yet also very thin, so this removes the need to adapt everything to work with a very thick door.
Oh and you can buy 900ml tubes of acoustic sealant, I ended up doing this because you will need a lot.

Good luck with your build.
 

Ash2341

Active Member
My view on wire is that wire is wire and only the length of run and it's resistance should make you use a larger cable (so stick with pure copper 2.5mm sq or larger and you won't go wrong). I think someone once mentioned that provided the resistance of the cable is less than 5% of the resistance of the speaker, it should be fine.

If you want to pay more because it looks nicer then that might be worth it more than the sales pitch to promote it (bathed in Asses milk for a smoother sound..) because it's unlikely you'll hear a difference IMHO, but you will certainly see and prefer a good looking cable over another if it's in sight somewhere.

But that's just me and my tone deaf hearing. I'm sure some can hear massive differences, I'm just not one of them.

Atmos speaker placement - I tend to agree with you about placing them closer in than the left and right speakers - the commercial specs say they should be central between the center and each left and right speaker, so there does seem to be some leeway (if you google Atmos pdf you'll probably find the other doc).

I have a soffit like you describe, but around the listening position more than the whole room, and what I have done is use some very inexpensive speakers and placed 4 in a row for front height - two in line with the left and right as per the Dolby Atmos specs for home (as shown in the diagrams you supplied), and two in line with the center point between the center and the left and right so I have both recommendations in place to test with. I've yet to do this but hope to try it next week sometime. I may even get a switch box so I can change between the two quickly and easily. If that works with the front height speakers, I'll either do the same with the rear heights or move the existing rears in closer to match the fronts. My side surrounds are just above ear height and behind the listening position to try and give as much separation between them for a hopefully better 3D effect.

Hi Gary, thanks for the info. Haha yeah ~ I am thinking more towards the same lines regarding speaker wire. They will probably have to go a fair distance as they will have to be routed along walls and ceilings etc to avoid where the power lines are going to be, so some sort of thick cable will be needed. I will probably stick to what I have, but will have a good look on amazon to see what they have. Anyone else have any good ideas on what cables are good for surround duties?

Wow your dedication to proper ATMOS positioing is more than I could do...that setup will take ages as surely you will have to eq it for each set of speakers each time you switch between them?I was thinking similarly that they should go in line between the centre and L/R speakers, but I haven't seen many people doing this? I will have to measure up when we build the soffits and see how wide they can go to accommodate the speaker positions. I think I will be maxxing out at 50cm width for the soffits around the room so it may have to be inline with the L/R speakers anyway, unless I design it to change shape into the room etc. We will see in the next couple of weeks as the main problem will be the feeling of space as the ceiling is already only approx 7' in height. It will truly feel like a hobbit cinema, especially if I have dark paint everywhere!

Cheers

Ash
 

Ash2341

Active Member
Hi,

I investigated and installed soundproofing methods and materials into my home cinema build (which is still ongoing).

First dedicated Home Cinema room

Whilst I was forced to scale back my sound proofing plans a bit, from what I had originally set out to do, I still did a fair amount of work to ensure that the room was acoustically isolated from the rest of the house.
When it came to the walls and ceilings I used www.soundstop.co.uk as the material supplier. I opted for the genie clip and rail system, using Tecsound membrane instead of green glue. The advantage with the membrane is that you can use it either by itself, with 1 layer of plasterboard or on MDF. Also you can get one side coated with contact adhesive for easier installation. I cannot recommend this stuff enough, it is just great.
Soundstop don't make any of the products themselves, they simply act as a middle man, but they do make it easier to order all the materials you need for the job.

I too will be installing a double door into the home cinema room. However, I am using Tecsound membrane on the internal fire door. The membrane is massively heavy yet also very thin, so this removes the need to adapt everything to work with a very thick door.
Oh and you can buy 900ml tubes of acoustic sealant, I ended up doing this because you will need a lot.

Good luck with your build.

Thanks mate. Your room looks like it will be amazing once it's done....and the mammoth house extension looks cool too :)

I see where you are coming from with the Tecsound stuff. I decided to go down the green glue route but it was a toss up and all depended on price and ease of use. My builders are quite happy using the green glue so that's why I went that way really. I think it technically does the same thing.
I may use the Tecsound stuff on the doors though, but haven't got round to them just yet. I am in the process of looknig into drop-down seals and stuff like that, and need to measure up and order the right stuff. I am looking mainly at Norsound stuff as they seem good.

ON it with the 900ml tubes, and yes we are going through them pretty quickly, it's going in everywhere!!!!:D

Good luck with your build, looks immense. :)

Cheers

Ash
 

SeriousPigeon

Active Member
With the double doors into my cinema room, the outer door closes onto a tiled floor and the inner one (which is the firedoor) closes onto carpet.
The outer door is an expensive oak door, which I am not allowed to cut, trim or change in any way under instruction from my wife. So my only option is to add something like this to the inner door.
So do you know if these Norsound seals work on a carpeted floor?

Thanks,
 

Ash2341

Active Member
With the double doors into my cinema room, the outer door closes onto a tiled floor and the inner one (which is the firedoor) closes onto carpet.
The outer door is an expensive oak door, which I am not allowed to cut, trim or change in any way under instruction from my wife. So my only option is to add something like this to the inner door.
So do you know if these Norsound seals work on a carpeted floor?

Thanks,

Hi, the double door idea sounds good. It's as shame that you can't add anything to the oak door as it will be closing on a tile surface. This would be ideal for a drop down seal to sit on, unless the grouting line will affect the seal at all if it crosses it? They are pretty unobtrusive as they get routed into the bottom of the door. If that's not an option then a drop down one on the fire door would be the next best option. I am sure that there is an option worth looking at for carpet...have a look at Intumescent Seals | Intumescent Strips | Acoustic Seals and see what they have. Norsounds website will have a selector tool as well which may be useful? I am sure there are other seals around too. What you could do is have a threshold plate underneath the firedoor for the drop seal to work on? It would probably look ok as a distinction between the carpet and tile, and can be made to be pretty flush etc? On mine we are going for a full frame around the doors so it will look a bit like an exterior door at the threshold so a proper seal can be formed etc.

Hope that helps?

Cheers

Ash
 

Ash2341

Active Member
I'm going to be using this stuff for all my cabling, because I'm putting it in walls it's LSZH and it's buy 1 metre get one free from them.

Comus LSZH High Grade Speaker Cable 2 core x 2.5mm 06013003 | PennElcomOnline.com

Effectively 82p a metre.


Thanks for the options guys! Thresherinc, sorry the link doesn't seem to work, but I get what you have said. Looks good either way. I was looking at something more like the QED one mentioned as it seems to be quite keenly priced. There is another option I am looking into which is the Hi-Fi Van Damme cable but the cost goes up a bit but as I need a reel the cost comes down a chunk. It can be 2.5sqmm, 4 or 6sqmm so it all depends on what I want really. The distances won't be too bad for the surrounds so I may be overthinking it! I will have a good look later and buy nearer the time as we aren't at that stage yet.

I think I will most likely put my overhead speakers as far 'into' the room as I can go with my soffit. From what I can tell they should be in-line with the L/R speakers, or maybe a little more toward the centre speaker so hopefully it will be fine with respect to ATMOS/DTS:X etc.

Does anyone think Auro is going to become a useful standard to wire up for as to me it looks pretty dead in the water so far. I was thinking I may need to wire in heights all the way around the room? Or maybe if the overheads are close to the edge in a soffit they would work just as well? Only one I probably can't have is the VOG speaker as the ceiling height is just too low to have one right in the middle!

Took delivery of the Daikin Emura A/C unit earlier this week so I can have a look at where to place it as we need to run the necessary pipework and wiring to it and to the inverter. The inverter is going outside (obviously) and it can only really go underneath the window which is a shame as the noise from it may leak into the room from the window weak point. Ah well, there are always compromises.

Anyway, hopefully I will have some time later to upload some more pictures of the build so far.

Thanks for looking!

Cheers

Ash
 

Ash2341

Active Member
Little update with photos for you.

Here are some photos of the inside of the garage once the new roof joists were up and boarded, and with the old roof being taken down from below. You can see the state of the old roof in some of the photos. The gaps in the new joists will get filled with brick too.

DSC_6030_zpsqmbx9m4i.jpg


DSC_6033_zpsbxzxhvpn.jpg


DSC_6035_zps2vyhkonk.jpg


In this next one you can see the old beam which held up the original roof, and how much higher we have managed to go to gain a little room height. This height will be eaten up with the new independent ceiling and layers of plasterboard though!

DSC_6036_zps6pg6y9bd.jpg


DSC_6038_zpsql4esgyt.jpg


View from utility room into garage.

DSC_6041_zpsczqcb2qe.jpg


View back into utility room towards where the scrren and ‘AV area’ will be in the back corner. This is also where the old consumer unit was situated.

DSC_6043_zpsn7jgetev.jpg


Another view showing the old roof joists with the new.

DSC_6044_zpshmuqlurw.jpg


DSC_6057_zps1outzb4f.jpg


This is the old consumer unit location where we still have the garage main ring and lighting ring connected into the loft. These will be removed in due course. The CCTV camera will hopefully stay if the wires are long enough! In the top right corner there is already a hole where the boiler pipes were fed into the house which you can’t see. This is where I am going to feed the new CAT6/coax/HDMI cables from the loft into the new AV area.

DSC_6069_zpsxc2yrrlq.jpg


DSC_6115_zpsqvridtqa.jpg


Old roof totally removed and joist holes filled.

DSC_6117_zpsjzkja9pi.jpg


DSC_6118_zpsirnlzjhl.jpg


Had to hire in a power lift thing to remove the old central beam but I don’t saeem to have a photo of it but her is one with the beam removed.

DSC_6130_zpsg96de9qg.jpg


Quick photo of the top layer of decking being finalised before the insulation arrives.

DSC_6154_zpsmdfbsiwj.jpg


DSC_6133_zpsusi6vfd8.jpg


The insulation boards for the roof arrived. We used Celotex XR120 which is 120mm thick so more than adequate to keep the room warm. This was laid down on the vapour barrier and the edges taped to form a seal etc.

DSC_6196_zpshwoxxkca.jpg


Then the final top layer of 12mm plywood was nailed on. We unfortunately had to put this on for the EPDM to be laid on and for it to have a bit of solid floor if it was ever walked on in future. This would give us the third leaf in our soundproofing scenario but hopefully it won’t be too detrimental. We used long twistfix fasteners which are basically hammered in through the top deck into the insulation and then into the deck below.

DSC_6214_zps9dhodvxr.jpg


DSC_6219_zpsrfgdjrnl.jpg


Right I need to upload more photos to photobucket so that’s it for now. Hope it’s not too boring for everyone!

Cheers

Ash
 

Ash2341

Active Member
Right, so far the roof has been done and we are just waiting to get finalised quotes for the EPDM so it’s just got a protective cover on it for now. Next up is the breather membrane on the walls. First we wrapped some 25mm battens in DPC and then nailed them into the walls so we had something to attach the breather membrane too.

DSC_6310_zpswq93lflt.jpg


DSC_6311_zpsb13snxrl.jpg


DSC_6312_zpsmev1w8dr.jpg


Here’s a shot of the Tyvek Supro we used which we palced all the way up into the joists.

DSC_6314_zpsboduaupz.jpg


The black paint on the bottom of the walls is blackjack anti-damp paint. We used it on one wall as the house is attached there, and is higher so that wall will have some damp leaching into it from that side.

Then we took out the garage doors. I did think about keeping them and sealing them, with a stud wall behind but this would always be a weak point if we did that in terms of sound isolation. So they were removed and a fram was fitted in its place. This was then boarded on the outside with 3 overlapping sheets of 22mm plywood, each with green glue between the layers and then sealed liberally with acoustic sealant. We had gone through a LOT of green glue and sealant buy now and we haven’t even started the inside walls yet! The gaps in the stud wall where the doors were originally was filled with some 100mm celotex I had left over for some extra insulation (but next to no good for sound isolation).

DSC_6317_zpsc351xzhw.jpg


DSC_6318_zpszathvdxo.jpg


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During this stage I set up a small system in there to see how loud it got outside. It was a 2.1 set-up with the sub on the concrete floor and the bookshelf speakers on stands. Using a free SPL app on my phone I fired up some old school Michael Jackson on CD and cranked it up. It was averaging over 100dB in the garage and felt pretty loud! I probably don’t listen to music that loud very often to be honest, and films will only be that loud on a few occasions during the action bits etc so I thought it was a fair volume to my ears. Out side the SPL reading was hovering around 70-ish but there was a fair bit of background noise too. You couldn’t hear it about 5 meters away at all which I thought was pretty good for the work we had already done. Before you would be able to hear this all the way across the street which is probably 25m+ away! I did notice that the sound was louder as you passed the wooden stud walls where the doors used to be, and if I placed my hand on it you could feel the vibrations. This was annoying, so we decided to add more mass to the stud walls by adding 2 more layers 22mm OSB from the inside in the frame, and then put the celotex back on. This did m,ake the frame a little deeper but this wasn’t a problem as the next bit would be stepped out a little from it anyway.

The next bit went quickly so not many photos. The breather membrane was taped and sealed with Tyvek tape and then we put down a layer of DPM on the floor Then we built a 4x2 wooden frame all the way around the garage just shy of the breather membrane. This would only be used to hold in the first layer of Rockwool (100mm) and wasn’t structural at all. This would still count as the ‘outer leaf’ so isn’t a problem if it touched the roof or floor or any part of the garage really.

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While this was being done the new window arrived. Due to cost and time constraints I compromised and ordered a UPVC ‘acoustic’ window. It is white on the inside and anthracite on the outside to match our utility room. It is in the 'study' section so the white won't have any effect on the home cinema part at all. It is also a fire escape window so it opens fully out and is at the right height and size to follow building regs. This had a 6.8mm acoustic pane and a 4mm toughened pane. This is nowhere near the correct thickness if you want to do it right, as they probably need to be more like 8 and 12mm each etc or larger. One pane is laminated and of a different thickness which is how it works, but the UPVC part is our compromise. The actual frame is totally empty inside, in that I mean it’s full of air. This is obviously rubbish for sound isolation so we drilled holes in the frame and filled it as much as possible with some acoustic sealent. The frame felt immediately heavier so I hope it helped a bit. Hope it doesn’t affect the UPVC much in the loing run, but if there are any problems I can always replace it with a good hardwood frame and proper glass later. If you want to do it properly a wooden frame is definitely the way to go.

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The breather membrane and frame was built to totally cover the original garage doors as if they weren’t even there as shown below. As you might be able to see, the frame incorporates the pier from the old beam so it doesn’t intrude on the final room.

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Then we had a delivery of the 100mm Rockwool RWA45.

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Next part in a bit…

Cheers

Ash
 

Ash2341

Active Member
We then had to sort out the wiring that would make it’s way into the AV area for networking etc. The access into the room would be the old holes the boiler pipes previously occupied, and the holes the original consumer used too.

I tried to plan for everything, so this is where it may seem a little like overkill here! I want to use the AV area as a ‘hub’ for the whole house, but in the future the ‘hub’ may move to the loft where we are extending into in the future. So I had to get thinking what I might need. I also needed to provide for the study area too so that’s why there are lots of wires going in!

I also had to run a couple of wires into the utility room from the loft/av area so there was that too (for CCTV video feed and more IP cameras in the future).

I ran 8 HDMI (4K capable apparently) 10m lengths into the AV area to the loft. There is also 1 HDMI running from the AV area to the study area in case I want another monitor in the study from the server PC. I will run the rest of the cables internally so not to penetrate the sound isolated shell anymore.

3 shotgun coax cables for SKY HD (Q in the future), and for possible freeview/freesat and for a CCTV output to my server/HTPC. There is also 1 shotgun coax going to my study are for the same purpose.

12 CAT6 cables to the AV area. This is for networking and the possibility of distributed AV to the rest of the house if I want to add it in later. I didn’t have enough CAT6 to run enough cables to each current and future room for full distribution but I will think of something else when the time comes to start our full extension. I also ran 10 CAT6 cables through to the study area (some were already run through the utility room beforehand so not on these photos).

I have plugs on the ends of the HDMI cables as they will be run directly into any equipment. I plan on using brush plates where they enter the room. This isn't a problem as they won't be seen at all as they will be in the AV area/cupboard. If the were on show then I would get some proper wall plates etc. I bought the CAT6 cable from Blackbox and its the LS0Z stuff (or something like that?) Gigatrue cable that seems to be used a lot on here. The CAT6 are unterminated as I bought it on a reel so I will have to do all those terminations myself at some point. These, along with the coax cables will be run through a brush plate too. As they can be a bit fragile I ran more in case some didn't make it through the pull from the loft. It was quite a fair way, about 2 feet through a cavity so hopefully all the cables survived. The hole will eventually be filled in, with liberal coverage of acoustic sealant as well. The cables will be wrapped up to protect the sleeves from moisture etc too. Hopefully this won't let too much sound leak into the house. Once we get round to running them into the room they will be secured to the frame to make sure they don't rattle away in there, and then they will enter the room at just over 1' off the floor. This ensures there is also no direct path that sound could travel through to the house.

I also ran some loops of Lutron cable, which connects up to my Grafik Eye lighting units which I will have in the home cinema. This is hopefully going to connect to a homeworks system in the future, but I may need to get all new equipment later, but for now it will be the old school stuff for me.

Through the hole they go:

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The next part for wiring was for power. I had the electrician wire up for a new dedicated consumer unit in here, so it has tails off the meter and will be as separate as possible from the main house unit.

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A little teaser photo of the inner leaf stud wall and how it will be spaced from the outer leaf. We are spacing it out 2” to ensure there is no chance of any wayward short circuit possibility between the two leaves. This will be the start of the totally independent inner room. Most people say a minimum of 1” gap, but I thought we could get away with a little more as there are places where the garage isn’t truly square so this gives us some leeway.

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Remember the Rockwool? Well here it is in the stud frame. The white bits are the breather membrane wrapped around the piers dotted around the garage.

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It is pretty heavy stuff but also pretty stiff so it can be wedged into the frame fairly easily. It does get everywhere so a mask is essential. My builders didn’t seem to mind….maybe in a few years they will! I bought RWA45 100mm for the walls as it is about 45kg/m3 in density which is apparently the one to get with regards to sound isolation, and is especially effective with low frequencies. Normally in a garage conversion you would use Kingspan or Celotex at a depth of approx 60-80mm as it is very good on the thermal front. Rockwool isn’t as good, and so to get the same thermal properties (U-values etc) as say Celotex then you need more of it. I will have 100mm in the first stud wall and then another 100mm in the inner stud wall making 200mm of Rockwool. This will work out better than what building regs would want anyway, with the benefit of the sound isolation qualities Rockwool gives over Celotex type insulation. From what I have managed to research, in terms of sound isolation, the foam boards are pretty much useless.

The guys managed to fill most of the stud frame with it, and also filled up between the joists in the roof part to avoid any cold bridging.

Next part up soon, thanks for keeping up with me :):thumbsup:

Cheers.

Ash
 
Last edited:

coolblu

Active Member
Hi Ash, love the work you're doing...just wanted know why you're using cat 6 rather than cat 7 cables.
 

Ash2341

Active Member
Hi Coolblu, thanks. Well I bought it awhile ago but I seem to remember it costing a bit less, and the plugs were slightly different in the way they are attached to the wire? I think it was basically overkill to go for cat7 to be honest and no real need for my purposes. I also had to buy a few reels of it so the cost started to add up etc. I think that's why but don't hold me to it on the size differences!

Cheers

Ash
 

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