A brilliant basement home cinema

A major refurbishment led to a great opportunity to create a bodacious basement home cinema.

Angus Murray, Projects Director New Wave AV explains that this project came about when an existing client discovered that their basement was leaking. “Unfortunately, the leak was severe enough that the whole basement needed reworking including a gym, wine room and their cinema room that had originally been installed in 2009.  The client took this opportunity to significantly rework the whole basement to allow him to achieve a high-performance private cinema room.”

Angus continues, “Due to our ongoing relationship with the client the project wasn’t difficult to win however the client was very focussed on ensuring that he achieved the performance levels and room design he required at the budget that he had allocated. The family came over for a demo at our Experience Centre to understand what can be achieved and to get a better understanding of the products that we specify.”

The client wanted a room that was very immersive so there was a lot of early design work around ensuring a suitable speaker configuration and screen size.

Angus underlines, “Film was a focus so a 2.35:1 screen was specified as well as a Sony projector with suitable lens memory. The final speaker configuration was 7.2.4 using Triad Silver Speakers for the front speakers and Bronze Speakers for the Surrounds, Rears and Dolby Atmos channels. Four subwoofers were specified to even out the bass response across the room.”

The client also wanted to use the room for two-channel audio so a separate amplifier and speaker system were specified solely for music.  Amplification is a Naim Uniti Nova that also provides high-res streaming via Qobuz and Tidal, the speakers are the B&W 700 Series.

Getting the right result

Angus says, “The client was very engaged and hands on during the whole design process.  As part of our initial proposal, we produced a Technical Design Document that detailed the expected performance level for the room. This document highlighted that with the original budget we could not achieve the required SPL for the room, this information allowed the room budget to be reviewed and led to the front LCR speakers being ‘up specified’. 

“The client came to our Experience Centre and auditioned the Triad speaker range and viewed the Sony projector and was very happy with both elements.  He wanted to ensure ease of use for the room, so Control4 was specified, as the family had this control system throughout the house already. Control4 Lighting Control was allowed for so that specific scenes could be triggered easily either within the app or on the remote control.”

The remedial building works on the basement were very extensive which did mean that some of the installation issues often seen could be dealt with at the design stage. By working closely with the client and producing floor plans, RCPs and elevations, the room was built to accommodate the kit specified and the performance level looking to be achieved. Access to the basement was sometimes a challenge but beyond that there were no major hurdles to overcome.

Angus sums up, “The unique element for this room is the combination of a full Dolby Atmos cinema experience and a 2.0 listening experience.  We worked hard with the client to ascertain whether one system could offer both solutions but, in the end, it was decided that two dedicated systems would be the correct way to go. Once this decision was made it was about ensuring that the Dolby Atmos speaker configuration was installed as discretely as possible to ensure only the 2.0 speakers were visible.

“The client’s favourite part of the room is the audio performance. He was particularly impressed with how the room performed after calibration on the Anthem AVR. Our favourite part is how well the acoustic treatment creates interest and adds to the luxurious feel to the room.”

Essential Kit List

Sony VPL-VW590ES Projector

Cinema Build Systems Slim Screen

Anthem MRX1140

Triad Rack Amp 700

Triad Rack Amo 300

3 x Triad Inwall Silver/6 LCR

4 x Triad Inwall Bronze LCR

2 x Triad Inwall Bronze/6 Sub

2 x Triad Inwall Bronze/4 Slim Sub

4 x In-Ceiling Bronze/8 Sat

Control4 EA1 and SR260

Control4 Wireless Dimmer Keypads

Vicoustics Cinema Round, Multifuser and Audio Treatment

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