Cinema Room with low ceiling

wilwong1971

Active Member
Hi all


My plan to convert my garage office into Projector / Atmos setup is finally given the go ahead!

Its around 4m x 2.3m internal dimensions ...but my main issue is ceiling height which is just over 2 metres. (subject to how much raising the roof will cost)

Is there any issue with mounting a projector (I may be able mount it behind the seating area and not have people walk past)
what about atmos speakers etc?
Good idea to have speakers behind the AT screen?

Can a room with low ceilings work sound field wise?
Any advice appreciated, thank you!
 

Peter Parker

Distinguished Member
Put the pj on a shelf at the back wall (assuming the throw works for the screen size you're after) and that should protect it from knocks etc

Atmos speakers can be mounted into the ceiling like downlighters, so will sit flush

Yes, it's a good idea to have speakers behind the screen.

No reason the room shouldn't sound ok - you can add some treatment to remove any slap echo etc without going overboard.
 

wilwong1971

Active Member
Thanks Peter !

Here's the layout (I wil learn google Sketch up soon!)

home cinema layout template.jpg


Wife definitely said no to blocking up the Windows for an AT screen wall so needs to be the other end with the door, shame since that end I can possibly recess the projector from the other part of the garage on the other side.

The low ceiling I can possibly take the plaster board off and maybe embed cables and star ceiling that way (too low for soffit i reckon)

96 inch screen is the biggest I reckon I can get away with

5.1.2 recommended (considering the reduction in room length with screen wall) ?

Any good atmos / reciever speaker combo recommended in £3000 range all in?

Was thinking about JVC NP5 (expensive) or Epson LS12000 (better price but not as good DTM like JVC) on a 96 inch screen size, would good DTM needed on HDR?

Thanks!
 

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IWC Dopplel

Distinguished Member
You might find you only need 2 height speakers. You can get very good immersion with 5.x or 7.x if set up well. Depending on your budget I might be tempted to avoid overly cheap speakers too close to you
 

wilwong1971

Active Member
Thank you, I think I can bed this into the ceiling since there is room up there, is it better to use in ceiling speakers in this case? (I was going to put atmos heights on side walls but was concerned about ceiling height
 

wilwong1971

Active Member
Also has a brain wave (the current wall could only really accomodate a 92 inch fixed screen, however, there is a recessed door way that will give me another 30 cm to the width of that wall (if I build the buffle wall right up against it.. that should allow me to fit in 100 inch screen :)
home cinema layout 3 ROWS.jpg
 

Peter Parker

Distinguished Member
You can go wall to wall with the screen provided that you have black velvet on the side walls, as it absorbs light and doesn't reflect back onto the screen - you can't see the side walls even with a full white projected image and it makes the screen wall look wider. Angle the left and right speakers in a little to reduce the effect of the sound reflecting off the side walls. I would go for speakers with waveguides as they will aim the sound more at the seating area than the floor walls and ceiling, which helps with reducing reflections. You can add some sound absorption by making wooden frames with black velvet stretched over, that go floor to ceiling and just push into place (make them an interference fit so they are held in pace by friction). 30mm will be enough to help with that, but more is better, it depends on how much room and screen size you want to sacrifice. Some is better than none.

Atmos speakers work better in the ceiling or they can sound like they're just higher wall speakers, with sounds moving up and down the wall instead of overhead. If you have a wall to wall screen with speakers up against the side walls behind the screen, I found the Atmos speakers work better following a centreline either side of the centre speaker, midway between the left and centre, and right and centre. That puts the Atmos audio more overhead.

From your image you show the rear seats are for 16:9 IMAX. IMAX will work better when viewed from your front row - the scope image should remain at the same immersion level (retains teh same horizontal viewing angle), but just adds extra height for the IMAX parts. Moving to the back row has the opposite effect by making the image visually smaller and less immersive.

If your main seating is the front row, I would go for 4 Atmos speakers as you have room for them in front and behind those seats. If you just go for two Atmos, place them directly over the main 2.35 seats.
 

wilwong1971

Active Member
Thanks Peter, thats some great info.

Have tweaked the diagram to suit, so best case with budget a 5.2.4
With blacked out walls and ceiling I'm hoping it will be a great room despite being a meagre 3.7m x 2.3m with a midget ceiling!

Having looked at throw distance for the length of room I have, looks like Epson LS12000 would just have enough throw for 100 inch screen (300cm from lens to screen, hoping the recessed lens will allow a centimetre or 2 lol) .. JVC will need longer throw sadly...

home cinema layout 3 ROWS atmos.jpg
 
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Peter Parker

Distinguished Member
Looks good - toe in the L&R and the SL and SR and you should be good to go (I take it the direct angles are just a limitation of the image software, so I just tweaked it).

1648414038315.png

Have you a preference for seating distance? A rough guide for the front row is to have the seats the same distance from the scope screen as the screen is wide, so if the screen is 100 ins wide, distance to the front row would be around 100 ins. That allows IMAX to be seen similarly (maybe a little further back) to the back row in an IMAX theatre without being too close for scope and 1.85:1. Screen height is usually more of a problem than width, so make sure the scope portion of the screen isn't too high - 15 degrees from your seated eyes to the top of the screen is the max recommended. With IMAX being taller than scope it doesn't matter because you won't be looking above the scope portion very much or for very long. The seating distance is just a guide, so you can sit closer or further back, depending on your preference,

You may have to take into account the height of heads in both rows of seats with a low ceiling as the heads may get in the way of the projected image. 3D imaging will help with that.
 

wilwong1971

Active Member
Brilliant, thanks for this, yes I’m using Paint at the moment so functions are a bit basic … 3D wise most use google sketch up or any 3D software you recommend?

good point about screen height, I reckon plinth at the back row will be out of the question with my ceiling height … my plan was to get fairly high cushioned sofa at the back and floor sofas at the front like these:


71192F33-610A-4712-A38C-372A6683F329.jpeg

i see what you mean about the viewing angles … so ideally screen should be lower like this ?

37D57B61-D5D4-4D8A-AA22-EB0217569EA3.jpeg


Space will be tight for 2 rows so the back sofa might need to be up against the wall, but MLP will be front row so that’s ok.

my living room i can simulate to almost the size of the planned garage so I can try furniture arrangements and viewing with a cheap £60 led projector I have and see what’s comfortable viewing distance wise, wife will definitely be further back but I can run a scope film in the living room and see if I can try 7ft from the screen as a start (that would probably be the distance I need to squeeze 2 rows in for real.

thanks for all your advice !
 

Peter Parker

Distinguished Member
Lower is better for vertical viewing angles, but worse for heads getting in the way of the projected image, so you'll probably have to prioritise the image being unobstructed.

You can work out the vertical viewing angle by using an online right angle triangle calculator (see link below), and use your eye height when seated and the distance from that to the top of the scope image, so if 44" is the height of your eyes, and the top of the scope image is 66 ins from the floor, the height from eyes to top of image is 22" (a). You use that with the distances from the screen to eyes (you mentioned 7ft, so use 84 for b), that would give you an angle of 14.7 degrees, so within the recommended limit.

All my numbers were just quick guesses, so measure and use your own. Don't worry about the height of the 16:9 image if that's only being used for IMAX.

 

wilwong1971

Active Member
Thanks!

Will measure up, the alternative I thought of, to make the room less cluttered, would be to use 3 individual floor chairs that could be seperately moved forward or back to suit individual immersion...
Also having smaller lower furniture will make the low ceiling less claustrophobic Im hoping...

home cinema layout 1 x  ROW atmos.jpg
 

IWC Dopplel

Distinguished Member
I think that's a good idea, you can add a couple of bean bags if needed. I know a lot go for single seats but a 3-4 seater sofa might be less 'formal' ?

I spent ages sourcing a wide sofa so I can seat 4 and 99.9% of the time it's used by 2.5 (me, Jane and out whippet !)
 

wilwong1971

Active Member
A sofa on wheels I might have a look at actually, light enough to wheel forward when watching Scope for better immersion... 3 seater sofa would be perfect and as you say, bean bags when guest pops in, or failing that I have dining chairs!
 

Peter Parker

Distinguished Member
It's definitely worth experimenting to see what works best for you, and you may find that eventually you settle on a single location where you don't feel the need to move the seats again. The only problem with moving the seats is that you can't move the speakers to match, but if you experiment you may find it doesn't make much of a difference, especially if the speakers still remain within the range that is recommended for them.

If the room is dark, I wouldn't worry about the ceiling height too much - if you can't see it during a movie it doesn't matter how low it is. Unless you're going to spend a lot of time in there with the lights on I guess. I would try and make sure there aren't any things in the field of view that may light up and be visible while viewing, as that can be distracting and pull you out of the movie.
 

wilwong1971

Active Member
Thank you

now thinking of speakers and Baffle wall, would a set of Dali speakers be good as a starting point? what Would you recommend as a decent in ceiling speaker?

The room is quite small and I won’t be playing reference level


cheers!
 

kenshingintoki

Distinguished Member
have u thought about a big OLED instead?

I'm a gigantic fan of PJs (I have 2 setups) but 96'' seems really close to big TV size, and a big TV has tonnes of advantages.
 

kenshingintoki

Distinguished Member

I just think for ur room dimensions and maximum image size, and how expensive of PJs you're looking for, you're not going to take full advantage of what they can offer so you'll be better off with a big TV set.

NP5 is £7000 or so. LS12000 is £4300 or approximately that.

Thats within 83'' OLED territory and the 77'' ones are going for like £2k-2.4k now.
 

Peter Parker

Distinguished Member
Speakers are a minefield, with many opinions on what is best etc (and I'm probably not the best person to ask, so take everything I mention with a pinch of salt), but for a cinema room I wouldn't go for anything with dome tweeters - they spray the sound everywhere which can add to the need for room treatment.

I'm a fan of compression driver/waveguide speakers, like those you find in commercial theatres and PA speakers (not the piezo tweeters). Many normal HIFI speakers will have what is called 'baffle step compensation' built into the crossover, so although those Dali's may still work in a baffle wall, the BSC is not needed.

If you want to save some money, I'd suggest something like Behringer B215XL or B212XL (or a smaller equivalent, but that will require some research), which will leave you some cash over for a better sub(s). There's a huge thread over on avs for them:


In a baffle wall, the 15s can be crossed as low as 40hz (it's where Audyssey wants to cross them and the 12s a bit higher).

I'm pretty sure I'm in the minority here for speakers like these, but they do sound different to the usual speakers and are more in keeping with those you find in commercial theatres.

Atmos and even surround speakers an be coaxial speakers - like Kefs or even car speakers which can be screwed directly into the ceiling like a downlighter, they have the tweeter in the middle of the driver, so you can have the same speakers for surrounds and ceiling. If you want something more conventional, maybe some JBL Control Ones which are small:


They're just a suggestion and I'm sure others will have different/better ideas. The most important speakers are the LCR which is where the bulk of the audio comes from - something like 80% from the centre, and 3% from the surrounds as I recall (before Atmos was a thing, so that may have changed for the surrounds now), so you may not need to spend so much on the surrounds.

If you can get a demo of any speakers, especially the Behringers/PA vs hifi, that will certainly help.

This link gives a bit of an idea for baffle wall construction. There's more on the site if you search.

 
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wilwong1971

Active Member
I do love my OLED C1 in the living room, since it’s been packed away with the living room being decorated we have whipped up the Bomaker £60 refurb projector, throwing 92 inch on the wall, its weird i sometimes enjoy the scale more than the crappy picture … I tend to be more forgiving and have more wow moments …

although an 83 inch oled is mighty tempting too…

PS seen your thread might pick your brains on colour scheme, other than black I have no clue other than feeling lucky my missus is letting me use black in the first place lol
 

wilwong1971

Active Member
Speakers are a minefield, with many opinions on what is best etc (and I'm probably not the best person to ask, so take everything I mention with a pinch of salt), but for a cinema room I wouldn't go for anything with dome tweeters - they spray the sound everywhere which can add to the need for room treatment.

I'm a fan of compression driver/waveguide speakers, like those you find in commercial theatres and PA speakers (not the piezo tweeters). Many normal HIFI speakers will have what is called 'baffle step compensation' built into the crossover, so although those Dali's may still work in a baffle wall, the BSC is not needed.

If you want to save some money, I'd suggest something like Behringer B215XL or B212XL (or a smaller equivalent, but that will require some research), which will leave you some cash over for a better sub(s). There's a huge thread over on avs for them:


In a baffle wall, the 15s can be crossed as low as 40hz (it's where Audyssey wants to cross them and the 12s a bit higher).

I'm pretty sure I'm in the minority here for speakers like these, but they do sound different to the usual speakers and are more in keeping with those you find in commercial theatres.

Atmos and even surround speakers an be coaxial speakers - like Kefs or even car speakers which can be screwed directly into the ceiling like a downlighter, they have the tweeter in the middle of the driver, so you can have the same speakers for surrounds and ceiling. If you want something more conventional, maybe some JBL Control Ones which are small:


They're just a suggestion and I'm sure others will have different/better ideas. The most important speakers are the LCR which is where the bulk of the audio comes from - something like 80% from the centre, and 3% from the surrounds as I recall (before Atmos was a thing, so that may have changed for the surrounds now), so you may not need to spend so much on the surrounds.

If you can get a demo of any speakers, especially the Behringers/PA vs hifi, that will certainly help.

This link gives a bit of an idea for baffle wall construction. There's more on the site if you search.



I've just stumbled on your thread regarding the B215XL, they sound amazing for the price and more than enough room for LCR in my planned screen wall and also Toe in

 

Peter Parker

Distinguished Member
Indeed. I'd been reading up on Econowave speakers that use a constant directivity wave guide with a compression driver, and that's what led me to these. I bought one, liked it and bought two more. Some people went for the smaller 212s which I think use the same CD but with a different crossover (and different woofer, naturally), so they may work just as well. For the cost they can't be beaten IMHO. I bought one so that if I didn't like it I could sell it on and not lose much. Sometimes they can be had for a little over £100, but currently they're around £120 including delivery. You'll need a baffle wall depth of around 18" to fit them with some toe-in.


I removed the grills once the work was completed (room is 9ft wide):

1648553146401.png


It's a wall to wall 16:9 screen, masked to 2.40 for CIH. I only remove the masking for IMAX movies:

1648553381914.png
 

wilwong1971

Active Member
Indeed. I'd been reading up on Econowave speakers that use a constant directivity wave guide with a compression driver, and that's what led me to these. I bought one, liked it and bought two more. Some people went for the smaller 212s which I think use the same CD but with a different crossover (and different woofer, naturally), so they may work just as well. For the cost they can't be beaten IMHO. I bought one so that if I didn't like it I could sell it on and not lose much. Sometimes they can be had for a little over £100, but currently they're around £120 including delivery. You'll need a baffle wall depth of around 18" to fit them with some toe-in.


I removed the grills once the work was completed (room is 9ft wide):

View attachment 1675189

It's a wall to wall 16:9 screen, masked to 2.40 for CIH. I only remove the masking for IMAX movies:

View attachment 1675193

that’s a neat baffle wall and what I can see of your room looks amazing … I see what you mean by having a light controlled room looks a lot bigger in the dark .. 9ft wide room looks a lot bigger ! How long is your room ?

I'm seriously thinking just to buy a pair and test it in the living room first while that’s being decorated … and wind the wife up saying these will be the new living room speakers when I put the oled back on the wall ha ha
 
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Peter Parker

Distinguished Member
I did something similar. Luckily she has a sense of humour and why I'm still alive to tell the tale :)

The room is around 19ft long or thereabouts, but with 18ins lost to the baffle wall.
 

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