How to deal with 3.5m by 3m room for home cinema

nikotime

Member
That's 9ft 10" by 11ft 4" for those fighting against the metric system!

Hi all,

We are currently building a house and I'm trying to squeeze in a dedicated small home cinema room into the plans. We are quite limited for space and the largest room we can have would be 3m by 3.45m.

Currently we have the Epson EH-TW7000 projector, Q Acoustics Q 3050i Floorstanding Speakers (and central), and a 100" electric screen, but sit 4m away rather than 3.45m. I was wondering what people's thoughts are on whether this room size is a) possible and b) what size screen would be the biggest we could get away with.

I'm thinking of a 92" acoustically transparent screen which ideally our existing speakers would be able to sit behind, although wary they could be too deep. We'll certainly wire them up for some sort of atmos setup although would start with 5.1.

Advice would be really appreciated!

Below is the complete space that we are looking to split in two (3.45m x 3m is the top element above the red line). Naturally wouldn't use it as a dining room as well....Blackout blinds would be used infront of the windows and we are putting in a hidden door entry at the top of the room to get in. We could move the double doors into the bottom further down but unfortunately the fire cannot move which slightly scuppers making it any bigger. We'd be happy to not have a dedicated space but instead have a screen mounted in the ceiling and have it as a joint living space/cinema space, but I can't work out what the layout would be to accomplish this.

qr6bhxwt5jt81.png
 
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Mr Wolf

Well-known Member
Screen size is personal preference, it depends how immersive your like it. In my HT room I sit 3.4m from a 2.9m wide 125" 2.35:1 screen which equates to a 46° viewing angle which is very close to the THX reference 45° and feel just right for me.

1650041196368.png


To find the screen width (not diagonal width) that gives the recommended THX 45° viewing angle, take the distance from your eyes to the screen and multiply it by 0.835. So in your case it might be a 3.0m viewing distance which would need a 2.5m wide screen which is a 113" 16:9 screen or a 107" 2.35:1 screen.
 

Mr Wolf

Well-known Member
Note that the recommended spread of the L/R speakers is 44-60° so depending on your screen size you might prefer these to be either side of the screen. That's where I have mine which make a 53° angle so within spec. I found that if I spaced them any wider than this I lose the "phantom centre" effect which is where the L/R are played in phase to support the centre speaker on loud transients.
 

nikotime

Member
Note that the recommended spread of the L/R speakers is 44-60° so depending on your screen size you might prefer these to be either side of the screen. That's where I have mine which make a 53° angle so within spec. I found that if I spaced them any wider than this I lose the "phantom centre" effect which is where the L/R are played in phase to support the centre speaker on loud transients.
Thanks that's interesting. If I have a 100 or 106" screen then my two existing speakers could fit nicely to the side of it without looking out of place, and therefore wouldnt need a transparent screen to save some money. I'd need to work out an aesthetically pleasing way to mount the centre
 

DavidT

Well-known Member
Bear in mind that to position the speakers correctly you will likely be about 2-2.5m viewing distance to the screen.
 

Mr Wolf

Well-known Member
It’s more than OK to bring them forward from the screen. Unless they’re in-wall or baffle mounted, they will likely sound much better brought into the room a little. Bringing the L/R forward also widens their spread angle too which is usually a good thing but still keeps them close to the screen which you want.
 

nikotime

Member
It’s more than OK to bring them forward from the screen. Unless they’re in-wall or baffle mounted, they will likely sound much better brought into the room a little. Bringing the L/R forward also widens their spread angle too which is usually a good thing but still keeps them close to the screen which you want.
That's brilliant. For space saving to maximise the seating distance between sofa and screen it sounds that not having the speakers in wall will actually give me more space, given the width of the room would accommodate the floor speakers to the side instead. That wasn't what I initially expected but does make sense!
 

nikotime

Member
I think no one mentioned the MLP location, make sure you don't place your seats too close to the back wall. Audio wise, that's a no go, you'd get boomy bass. Try to place them around the 80% of the length of the room.
Hmm thanks that certainly isn't something I considered. I think 80% may be tough as trying to squeeze in space for as many people as possible. With that in mind perhaps 85-90% away from a 100", rather than bigger, fixed panel screen would be best in this situation. My existing floorstanding speakers would sit nicely to the side as the THX provided image before allows.

Our challenge is having space for 5/6 people on an irregular basis to also enjoy a film, plus my wife really wants a corner sofa (and I want something that reclines!). I think we'll try and get an L shape reclining sofa near the back of the room on an L shaped raised floor. The middle seat would be the MLP. Hopefully I can then place a small two seater floor sofa like the one below in the gap to give us flexibility for more people.
Hef33667e181c43d383e35648e6b05895u.png_720x720q50.jpg

Theoretically I could repurpose some old floorstanders as rear speakers in a 7.1.2 setup if the L sofa isn't at the back of the wall...
 

silva741

Active Member
Theoretically I could repurpose some old floorstanders as rear speakers in a 7.1.2 setup if the L sofa isn't at the back of the wall...
Re-utilizing material you already have would be nice. Are those speakers from the same brand as the LCR?

Regarding the seats placement, I'm having a hard time imagining where you would place the two-seater you mentioned, I'm guessing between the main sofa and the screen? That would be quite close to the screen.

About the distance to the back wall, placing thick absorption panels on the back wall would help a bit, and if you can make or buy bass traps, placing them in the corners of the room, that would also help to control the lower frequencies. But even with all that, the closer your ears are to the back wall, the boomier the audio will be.
 

Broadsword

Well-known Member
If your are having atmos in ceiling speakers then I would advise ignoring the Dolby setup guide. They say to have them level with fronts, but it’s likely they will be too close to the walls. I wish I had if brought mine in more to the Center of the room slightly.

My room, see sig is 3.2m by 3.9m. The other thing to consider is throw distances.
 

silva741

Active Member
If your are having atmos in ceiling speakers then I would advise ignoring the Dolby setup guide. They say to have them level with fronts, but it’s likely they will be too close to the walls. I wish I had if brought mine in more to the Center of the room slightly.
Unfortunately Dolby's website images are a bit misleading, it's better to check the PDF they provide, it has a lot more in depth information.
 

silva741

Active Member
It is? The PDF has a LOT more info. The website's images are misleading because they make it seem like the ceiling speakers should be aligned with the left and right from speakers, but the PDF clearly shows that they should be placed at around 45° relative to the listener.It is? The PDF has a LOT more info. The website's images are misleading because they make it seem like the ceiling speakers should be aligned with the left and right from speakers, but the PDF clearly shows that they should be placed at around 45° relative to the listener.
 

nikotime

Member
Re-utilizing material you already have would be nice. Are those speakers from the same brand as the LCR?

Regarding the seats placement, I'm having a hard time imagining where you would place the two-seater you mentioned, I'm guessing between the main sofa and the screen? That would be quite close to the screen.

About the distance to the back wall, placing thick absorption panels on the back wall would help a bit, and if you can make or buy bass traps, placing them in the corners of the room, that would also help to control the lower frequencies. But even with all that, the closer your ears are to the back wall, the boomier the audio will be.

You are completely right, I didn't realise how deep sofas are when compared to a floor plan! I have ditched that with some floor seats/cushions hopefully propped up against the raised floor as an 'overflow'.

If your are having atmos in ceiling speakers then I would advise ignoring the Dolby setup guide. They say to have them level with fronts, but it’s likely they will be too close to the walls. I wish I had if brought mine in more to the Center of the room slightly.

My room, see sig is 3.2m by 3.9m. The other thing to consider is throw distances.
Your thread is incredibly helpful! Thanks a lot for sharing. In terms of atmos I have shuffled them in a tiny bit and tried to create the below diagram.

I've kept the sofa off the back wall but think 7.1.2 would be pointless in the room size so 5.1.2 will do (and still be fab), plus will add as much acoustic treatment to the back wall as I can.

This is 2.7m from the MLP and about 3.3m from the projector. Looking at throw distances that will work for a 100" screen which has 3m minimum throw distance, giving me some wriggle room depending on where joists are to secure it!

Does it look about right for the space to others?

1650377983824.png
 

Mr Wolf

Well-known Member
You easily could do 5.1.4 in that room. Just put rear heights where the ceiling meets the wall in line with the front tops. This would go a long way towards compensating for a lack of surround back channels (which I agree are not viable for you) to create a bubble of sound.
 
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nikotime

Member
You easily could do 5.1.4 in that room. Just put rear heights where the ceiling meets the wall in line with the front tops. This would go a long way towards compensating for a lack of surround back channels (which I agree are not viable for you) to create a bubble of sound.
Didn't consider 5.1.4, that sounds intriguing! Not entirely sure I follow with the best placements that you are describing, did I get it right with the below? My worry is the side speakers are wall mounted so not angled at MLP, should they come forward in line a tad too?

1650381466255.png
 

Mr Wolf

Well-known Member
Yes, that's about right. I might pull those in very slightly from the sides (closer to the mid-point between centre and mains).

If you want masterclass on layouts this video series by AV guru Anthony Grimani is a must see. He disagrees with some of Dolby's guidance based on extensive custom installation experience.



He explains that rear tops don't need to be more than 10° behind you . THX think they should be above you. So they certainly don't need to be 30-45° behind you like Dolby are suggesting.
 
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nikotime

Member
Yes, that's about right. I might pull those in very slightly from the sides (closer to the mid-point between centre and mains).

If you want masterclass on layouts this video series by AV guru Anthony Grimani is a must see. He disagrees with some of Dolby's guidance based on extensive custom installation experience.



He explains that rear tops don't need to be more than 10° behind you . THX think they should be above you. So they certainly don't need to be 30-45° behind you like Dolby are suggesting.

Thanks! Shuffled them in a tad and the wall speakers ever so slightly down. I will draw them in properly to roughly the below to pass to the architect for exact measurements for electrician/builders.

1650383154875.png



Thanks for video link, sounds delightfully intense
 

Praetorpwj

Active Member
It’s more than OK to bring them forward from the screen. Unless they’re in-wall or baffle mounted, they will likely sound much better brought into the room a little. Bringing the L/R forward also widens their spread angle too which is usually a good thing but still keeps them close to the screen which you want.
May I ask why you can’t bring in walls into the room a little? If they have back boxes installed in a baffle wall can they not be positioned anywhere?

I ask as someone plotting an in wall build with the LR speakers toed in from the front wall either side of an acoustic screen. Angle would be 60 degrees which would be just in spec.
 

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