• New Patreon Tier and Early Access Content available. If you would like to support AVForums, we now have a new Patreon Tier which gives you access to selected news, reviews and articles before they are available to the public. Read more.

Bungalow multiroom AV setup planning stage - techie and purchase advice needed please

maxlifo

Standard Member
Hi all,

I recently bought my first property (smallish 2 Bed Bungalow – floorplan below) and am in the process of planning a modest multi room set up while I wait for the builders to start work later this month. I'm after some advice from you guys as it's my first time attempting anything like this and to be honest with you, I'm not 100% sure which way to go. I'm just starting to read up on all this, so all informed input will be well received!

I plan to add pics in this thread as I go along to show the progress I've made. Looking forward to hearing some feedback from you all.

THE AIM:
  1. All equipment (besides TV and speakers) to be hidden out of view in bedroom 2 (spare bedroom). Main reason: I want a clean looking living room as not much space.
  2. All content available in Living room
  3. All content available in Bedroom 1 - if unachievable/too pricey, I can make do with V+ (via splitter) and the amp HDMI (splitter as well) into the TV and add an Acer Aspire Revo as a secondary HTPC later if I feel the need.
  4. Music available in kitchen when funds available, possibility of adding TV in future but unlikely
  5. Keep cost down as much as possible, so looking to achieve this with the least amount of new purchases. I'm a bang for buck man at the moment having to spend on renovating the place as well:rolleyes:
  6. Me to be able to sit in the lounge playing games while the missus watches Eastenders etc in the bedroom on the small telly :thumbsup:
  7. ALL ROOMS LISTED WILL BE CAT6 CABLED

KIT LIST (owned and yet to purchase):

BEDROOM 2 (Hub):

OWNED
  • Virgin V+ HD
  • PS3
  • Xbox 360
  • Wii (may have to get rid :( - see below)
  • Gaming/internet PC (Quad Core, 4GB Corsair Ram etc)
  • Recording studio PC and various music making bits and pieces
  • Laptop
  • Router & Modem (20MB Virgin BB)

TO BE PURCHASED
  • Amp. (Thinking Onkyo 507, 577 or 607 - suggestions welcome)
  • Netgear ReadyNAS Duo or similar (must be able to stream 1080p to HTPC and music/pics etc at the same time to other devices on network - suggestions welcome again)
  • HTPC running XBMC Aeon - Either Acer Aspire revo (with linux) or Homebuilt Windows PC
LIVING ROOM:

OWNED
  • Wall mounted Sony KDL W4000 TV
  • Wall mounted Jamo A102HCS5 5.1 speakers

TO BE PURCHASED
  • Logitech Harmony 1100 remote
  • May do a floating wall or false chimney setup (undecided ATM - depends on which route I choose).

BEDROOM 1:


OWNED
  • Logitech Harmony 525 remote
TO BE PURCHASED
  • Wall mounted Sony Bravia 32” TV
  • Q Acoustics Q-TV2 Speaker System

KITCHEN:
  • Streaming audio from NAS to be added in a few months when I have the money. Maybe a squeezebox solution ...

A few questions:


I'm obviously going to need a Logitech RF Module to pick up the remote signal from another room (want to be able to control everything from the Harmony 1100 in the Lounge and the 525 in Bedroom 1), but how many do I need? Will they both work off one? I could add the logitech IR converter for the PS3, but may leave this due to negative criticism I've read on here.

How should I go about distributing the AV signal around the house (enabling 2 different independent sources - ie PS3 in Lounge and V+ in Bedroom)? Do I achieve this with HDMI splitters or CAT6 extenders? Bearing in mind the TV in the lounge TV is approx 22-23 ft away from where I plan to stash the AV rack. If cheaper, I'm happy to go the CAT6 route. The distance between the hub and bedroom 1 TV is only 6/7 ft so not an issue there I guess.

re: The Wii - Would a wireless sensor bar be OK on top of the lounge TV approx 23 ft away through 2 walls? Rather not have to put the Wii on it's own in the lounge, but think I may have to - or sell it :(

My other option is to have all the equipment on display in the front room with the NAS in bedroom 2. I'll probably do this if it's looking too expensive following my original plan.

I've probably left out some really obvious piece of gear I'm going to need, or misnamed something, so feel free to point it out to me :lesson: It's all new to me and I need all the help I can get! I may even be able to achieve some of what I want to with less gear than I think. Again - let me know! :)

Thanks for reading and for any useful advice you can provide. I'm off sick today, so going to spend the rest of the day drinking Lemsip and reading up on gear :thumbsup:

Cheers!

Max.
 
Last edited:

maxlifo

Standard Member
Here's the floorplan as promised. It's not exactly to scale, but you get the point.

housefloorplanfinal.jpg


Thanks for any comments/advice...:smashin:
 

hornydragon

Distinguished Member
Hi max the 525 wont work with the RF base only 1000/1100 895 do you may want to have a bit of a rethink on the system Bungalows are dead easy to work with as you have loft space access to all rooms having a rack in spare bedroom isnt a bad idea but it can get hot and noisey (depends how much bedroom will be used if its a problem)

I also suggest you test the consoles in bed 2 operate from lounge before going that route as most use bluetooth controllers they are not very long range adjacent rooms are OK but further can be an issue so can interference.

You will probably need a 4x2 MAtrix switch HDMI ones are notorious i would look for ones with IR like intellix to simplfy control up to 10-15m direct HDMI is fine over that your into HDMI over Cat5/6 territory

for option 3 how about NAS and data wiring etc to a hub in the loft and a closed unit in lounge this way its cheaper more control options and you can add Sonos (or alternative watch this space) using zone players in the loft.

Just get plenty of power sockets etc in loft if you go this route
 
Last edited:

maxlifo

Standard Member
Thanks for the reply mate MUCH appreciated. Couple of questions if I may...

Hi max the 525 wont work with the RF base only 1000/1100 895 do you may want to have a bit of a rethink on the system Bungalows are dead easy to work with as you have loft space access to all rooms having a rack in spare bedroom isnt a bad idea but it can get hot and noisey (depends how much bedroom will be used if its a problem)

Thanks for the advice on the harmony RF system :thumbsup: Tell you what mate, I'm liking this idea of network distribution from the loft. Top stuff. See there's another thread on this. Will have a look...

I also suggest you test the consoles in bed 2 operate from lounge before going that route as most use bluetooth controllers they are not very long range adjacent rooms are OK but further can be an issue so can interference.

Yeah good advice mate. Makes sense! The PS3 is bluetooth, but the Xbox is IR as far as I know, but yeah makes sense!

You will probably need a 4x2 MAtrix switch HDMI ones are notorious i would look for ones with IR like intellix to simplfy control up to 10-15m direct HDMI is fine over that your into HDMI over Cat5/6 territory

You mean this one? Looks bloody pricey if it is! http://www.intelix.com/products/digihdmi4x2.htm Nice one. Will look into this (and alternative brands - suggestions welcome again!). Will prob have to come back with some q's for you though! ;) Kind of shocked at the price, was looking at HDMI splitters for £40/£50 before. Guess I was looking at the wrong thing was I?! :)

for option 3 how about NAS and data wiring etc to a hub in the loft and a closed unit in lounge this way its cheaper more control options and you can add Sonos (or alternative watch this space) using zone players in the loft.

Liking it. Am seriously considering this now mate. In fact I'm considering putting all the AV gear in the lounge now, as I think the cost and grief of putting it all in bed 2 isn't worth it for a few more feet of floorspace and a more streamlined lounge (and I don't want to ditch the Wii)! Only thing that's worrying me about this is cooling for the NAS/Router/Switch etc in the loft. I assume I'm going to have to install some kind of extractor fan system in the loft am I? Maybe not so much now, but definitely in the summer..?

Just get plenty of power sockets etc in loft if you go this route

Got the electrician coming on Monday morning, so that is timely advice fella. cheers!
 
Last edited:

hornydragon

Distinguished Member
Comparing the air space in a loft to the kit your installing up their, a NAS, switch router heat wont be an issue.

Xbox is gamepad is Wireless (bluetooth i think) not IR but the xbox has an IR receiver for use with remotes.
 

maxlifo

Standard Member
Cheers for the info :smashin:

So, re: the 4x2 HDMI matrix. When you say I should chose an IR unit to "simplify control" I assume you mean so I could switch via remote in either room, rather than having to get up and switch on the unit itself? The one I posted above, which has the integrated CAT converter is damn expensive. Is that the model you meant? If so, could I not do this with a cheaper HDMI only matrix under the telly in the living room (I'm def putting the AV gear in here now) and run the output of that to an HDMI to CAT5e/CAT6 converter, which connects to another one in the bedroom to the TV in there? Would this work OK, or have I got the wrong end of the stick? Just want to do this as cheaply as possible really. Am I asking for trouble/going to introduce issues doing this?

Cheers.
 
Last edited:

chrisworton

Standard Member
Hi Max, I'm working on a similar project at the moment, its a bungalow with AV distributed to 4 rooms from 2 separate locations (eventually). My idea is as follows:

Rooms: Cinema room, Bedroom, Bathroom, Kitchen/living room.

Cinema room:
- SkyHD - HDMI splitter to all rooms (minus bathroom)
- Main PC with XBMC - HDMI splitter to Cinema and Bedroom
- Xbox 360 - HDMI to amp in this room only.
- Amp for 5.1 sound.

Kitchen/Living room:
- Acer Revo 3600 with XBMC - Direct HDMI to Amp in this room. picks up all media from other PC in Cinema room.
- 2nd Xbox 360 - HDMI to amp in this room only.
- Amp to enable 5.1 on both devices

Bedroom:
- TV with 2x HDMI input

Bathroom:
- Ceiling speakers connect to Acer aspire revo so you can play music from XBMC while having a shower.


Advantages of this setup are:
- one person can watch things from the PC library in the kitchen/living room while the other person watches a different thing from the PC library in the cinema and bedroom.

- You can pause TV in any room and resume it in a different room.

- You can resume media from the cinema room in the bedroom (in case you decide you want to finish a film/tv episode in bed!)

- Someone can watch TV in Kitchen/living room while someone listens to music via XBMC in the bathroom. (This can be controlled via iphone xbmc remote as to avoid interruption with other person watching TV)




The only thing i havent figured out yet is how to send IR from each room back to the SKY box. im going to use these HDMI splitters as theyre quite cheap: HDMI Splitter

You could also use just 1 xbox 360 and use a hdmi splitter on that. The controllers use RF wireless which seem to run fine in other rooms in my house while the xbox is in the cinema room.

You could also get away with HDMI splitting your PC with XBMC in all 4 rooms to save on buying another PC. You'd only be able to use the PC one at a time though.

1 more thing, have you tried the new XBMC alaska theme? amazing! i moved from aeon to alaska because it looks more modern and has great features.
 
Last edited:

illingworth22

Active Member
Hi Max, I'm working on a similar project at the moment, its a bungalow with AV distributed to 4 rooms from 2 separate locations (eventually). My idea is as follows:

Rooms: Cinema room, Bedroom, Bathroom, Kitchen/living room.

Cinema room:
- SkyHD - HDMI splitter to all rooms (minus bathroom)
- Main PC with XBMC - HDMI splitter to Cinema and Bedroom
- Xbox 360 - HDMI to amp in this room only.
- Amp for 5.1 sound.

Kitchen/Living room:
- Acer Revo 3600 with XBMC - Direct HDMI to Amp in this room. picks up all media from other PC in Cinema room.
- 2nd Xbox 360 - HDMI to amp in this room only.
- Amp to enable 5.1 on both devices

Bedroom:
- TV with 2x HDMI input

Bathroom:
- Ceiling speakers connect to Acer aspire revo so you can play music from XBMC while having a shower.


Advantages of this setup are:
- one person can watch things from the PC library in the kitchen/living room while the other person watches a different thing from the PC library in the cinema and bedroom.

- You can pause TV in any room and resume it in a different room.

- You can resume media from the cinema room in the bedroom (in case you decide you want to finish a film/tv episode in bed!)

- Someone can watch TV in Kitchen/living room while someone listens to music via XBMC in the bathroom. (This can be controlled via iphone xbmc remote as to avoid interruption with other person watching TV)




The only thing i havent figured out yet is how to send IR from each room back to the SKY box. im going to use these HDMI splitters as theyre quite cheap: HDMI Splitter

You could also use just 1 xbox 360 and use a hdmi splitter on that. The controllers use RF wireless which seem to run fine in other rooms in my house while the xbox is in the cinema room.

You could also get away with HDMI splitting your PC with XBMC in all 4 rooms to save on buying another PC. You'd only be able to use the PC one at a time though.

1 more thing, have you tried the new XBMC alaska theme? amazing! i moved from aeon to alaska because it looks more modern and has great features.

Are you sending all this traffic on HDMI? I thought of doing somthing similar to this but was warned off due to the lengths of HDMI I would require (20 meters max run and 10 meters minimum). It was said that the 20 meter run would give problems!
 

chrisworton

Standard Member
Are you sending all this traffic on HDMI? I thought of doing somthing similar to this but was warned off due to the lengths of HDMI I would require (20 meters max run and 10 meters minimum). It was said that the 20 meter run would give problems!

yeh there's a limit with HDMI which i think is about 10M. However certain splitters like the Neet one in my earlier post actually come with power adapters you can plug into the splitter that boost the signal, i think someone on the comments had a perfect signal going over 15M. Not sure of the max distance though.
 

The latest video from AVForums

Guardians of the Galaxy Xmas Special, Strange World, Bones and All, and Cabinet of Dr Caligari in 4K
Subscribe to our YouTube channel

Full fat HDMI teeshirts

Support AVForums with Patreon

Top Bottom