Media room down under


Standard Member
Sep 22, 2008
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Gold Coast, Australia
Hi all, I'm a brit down under. I've been lurking on here for a month or two researching Home theatre so I can convert my lounge room. I'll put my progress on here so I can get your advice and tips.

I have a lounge room that we hardly use, I'd like to make it into a TV/media room to escape the kids or watch movies in when they have gone to bed. I'm on a limited budget (says my handbrake) add would appreciate your advice.

The rooom is 6.5 by 3.75m and has a ceiling height of 2.55m.



I was initially torn between a plasma and a projector/screen. After seeing my mates projector and screen I have decided to go big!!

Here's some update pics.




As you can see I have moved the bookshelves, replaced the light fittings and asked an electrician to come to move and add sockets.

I am going to order the Sanyo z2000, mount and cable this week. The TV tables are not right now I have a big AV receiver (HK 255) so I may use the one in the front room and swop one of the ones pictured then sell the other identical one. The receiver wont have enough space above to cool if I slide it in the small gap.

I have a blu ray player, speakers, receiver and stands. A long HDMI cable to reach the projector from the receiver. The blu ray has a HDMI cable already but what other cables will I need for my setup?

I'll have austar, a blu ray player, the receiver and eventually a HD tuner. I already have one small HDMI cable and the speaker cable that comes with the HK speaker pack.

I'll paint the wall behind the screen a dark (brown?) colour, I was considering a suede effect but we have a tin of dark chocolate brown already so I may use that for now.

Can you think of anything else I'll need? (except curtains which may be a month or two down the line).
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Hi eveyoz..I'm an Aussie down under.:)..South of Adelaide

It looks like you have a nice space there to work with..:smashin:

There are a few more things you're going to need if you want to make the room more a theatre than a living room..

Firstly, those openings in the side wall are going to be a problem, acoustically speaking..Can they be blocked off or have doors fitted.?
You will need some acoustic treatment on the walls and corners..

If you're planning on adding a sub, you will need a length of RG6 coax to run from the sub to the AVR..
Also, if your adding a HD digital set top box, then most of those have HDMI out, so another cable there..

It looks like you have a couple of windows to block out as well..

You mentioned painting the front wall brown..what about the others, are you painting them as well?
G'day eveyoz, I'm in Torquay in VIC. Not sure on the specs of your HK amp, but if it doesn't upconvert to HDMI, then you'll also need some component cables to your projector so that you can watch Austar/Foxtel on the screen (plus anything else that doesn't have HDMI output).
Looks like a very good sized room there, almost perfect for a projector and what not.

Also judging from the view out of the window, it almost looks like Ramsay Street...:D

Looks like great weather as well. What I wouldn't give to be in Oz. :cool:
It's been raining here all afternoon if it's any consolation - but people like that as we're in constant drought conditions. Just had the driest September in 150 years...

Eveyoz is on the Gold Coast though, so no such problems for him!
110 or 100 inch at 4.5-6 m viewing distance on true HD?

With austars bad pic and normal TV am I being greedy in wanting a 110 screen on that big wall. Would a 100 screen be a better choice as a smaller image would appear less pixelated I suppose.

Opinions please.

110 or 100 inch at 4.5-6 m viewing distance on true HD?

With austars bad pic and normal TV am I being greedy in wanting a 110 screen on that big wall. Would a 100 screen be a better choice as a smaller image would appear less pixelated I suppose.

Opinions please.


With something like Austar I dont think 10" will make a difference to the PQ - it will be OK, but not spectacular. If the budget would allow I would look into the new DVDO Edge scaler/video processor about to be launched in Aus at the bargain price of AU$999 - much better than scaling in an amp and will improve poor sources dramatically on a large screen. You could even use that in tandem with the HK amp, using the Edge as your Video switcher.
Ok, I have now ordered the screen and a projector. I have bought the Harmon Kardon HK2017 Home theatre system with one set of speaker stands for the front. The electrician is coming next week as is the AV installer.

I had some worries initially about using a projector in a room where there is a fair amount of ambient light. I'd pretty much given up on getting one then I went around to a mates house. He has a new plasma and I was going to check out his new setup. While I was there he showed me his old projector and drop down screen- I was amazed!! He has a acer 800 by 600 projector with a cheap drop down screen. He has it set up in his family room which has quite a bit of light seeping in during the day. His screen was a 110 inch with a low res projector and it looked pretty good to me. Text looked a little blocky but only when you looked for it. Admittedly the projector is a bright one (1700) but my interest in projectors was rekindled. As I left I called my mate who has the sanyo z2000 and asked could I come and see how it works in a light room.

When I arrived at Bri’s place we went straight to his media room. He has white plantation shutters on the windows which allow a fair amount of light in when it is morning time. The screen looked a little washed out but to me it was still watchable. I opened and closed the shutters and saw how the light changing affected the screen. It looked good to me.

After phoning around I managed to haggle the price down from a local firm on the understanding that I would collect the projector, mount, 110 majestic screen and two hdmi cables myself. My reasoning behind the bigger screen is that hopefully it will last a couple of projectors and I wanted the big screen immersion. I’ll report on how it seems to me when we get everything running.

The room was painted in a colour we already have a tin of, it’s a matt (low sheen) dark brown . The high plug socket will be dropped to the floor level and we had austar installed (this may be a mistake if the very poor Austar picture looks too bad on the big screen. We saw some curtains in Target and will get them the next time they have a sale.




I bought two Ikea lack tv tables, because of the receiver size they are no longer suitable. I’ve moved the family room TV stand into the lounge and used one lack in the family room. Now I have to sell my other new unused lack. :(
The walls and ceilings will be staying the same colour, I need to keep the room as a lounge as well as a theatre room though when I saw the black ceilings in the mansion in Iron man it did get my mind thinking!! :)

Upscaler budget is non existent I'm afraid. I'm hoping Austar will improve but after reading about the head of austar and his opinion of HD TV I doubt it.


Sound wise I would like doors in the doorways but cost is a factor here. I had a sleepless night or two after ordering and paying for all the gear. Doors and frames would send me off the edge!!


Keep the comments coming please.

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I'm having thoughts about the stainless steel ceiling fan, it will reflect light from the projector.

I may have to move it or place the projector off centre and use the lens shift. . . .

I collected the screen from Richard at He showed me how to assemble it and we chatted for half and hour. He was very helpful and knowledgable about all things home theatre. :)

I also collected a sanyo z2000, a mount, a calibration DVD and two 10m HDMI cables.

My plan was to store the PJ, screen etc in the front room until mid week when the AV installer comes. So I got home and called a mate who came round and put the screen together. It wasn't too hard and it looked great when finished (and very big!).

I then decided to try the projector on a table, the movie looked great (a DVD with the samsungs inbuilt upscaling). This led onto me setting up the avr in 2.1 mode which then made me try the 5.1. :)

I tried a few low res movies I have on disk and although they were obviously worse than a DVD I was still impressed.

I seemed a pity not to try austar (sky) then. :). This was the worst picture quality but sitting 5-6m away it was acceptable- even in the daytime.

The cables are hidden under an empty box for now until I get an installer in or try it myself.

Wow! The screen and projector are great together- even in daytime. Sound is great as is the avr even before I've fully tweaked all the settings.

I may try to ceiling mount it today after strengthening the joist.

Pics to follow
Well it's all finished. The screen, pj and avr are all set up and the upgraded speaker cables are either in the walls or onder the carpet.

there's a curtain sale on next week so we'll get some curtains to help daylight viewing then but were not going to fully blackout the room.

I'll post pics if anyone is interested.

We have just bought some curtains, I'll get some curtain poles tomorrow. Notice the child gates to keep felt tip pens away from the screen!!

I have connected the AVR to the PC in the next room. I'd like a decent wireless keyboard and mouse so I can operate the PC through the stud wall but that can wait. I find the screen watchable in daytime (the image has been brightened to show more detail). but at night it's pretty impressive.

We still haven't tried a blu ray disk in the player or bought a HD tuner for terrestrial TV viewing.
Looks really smart, i like the nice clean look :cool: :thumbsup:
Wow, that's one fine looking screen. Is it 16x9 or 2.35:1? It looks 2.35:1 in some of those pics.

Does it ever get dark in Oz? :D
It's a 16:9 hajestic screen from Oz Theatre Screens - The Majestic Fixed Frame Projection Screen - Proudly Australian made - Projector Screens - Projection Screens - Fixed Frame - Motorised Screens - Projector Mounts with a 1.2 gain.

I tried to keep it as a lounge room too so it ended up clean and airy.

In Queensland there is no daylight saving so it gets light at 0530 ish and dark at 1700 hours. Plenty of time for movies in the evening but kids wake up VERY early.

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Curtains up, now I can watch movies in the day. there goes the renovations!!




I need to tidy up the cabling, put a couple of pics on the wall then buy a HD tuner next then I'm done. :)

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