Finite Solutions recently installed a £35,000 home cinema into the basement of a home in Cheshire. The brief was to design a space that suited socialising as well as watching films and sports, with at least eight seats. The client was also very keen on the idea of having a bespoke bar.
The client had main contractors in place but required a complete design service for all aspects of the room’s interior design, installation and commissioning of the AV and automation systems.
“Initial 3D modelling by our design team allowed our clients to easily visualise the layout of the room,” says Finite Solutions co-founder, Simon Mathieson.
Whilst the client’s original thoughts leaned more towards a conventional seating arrangement, tiered cinema style seating was selected to create a more authentic theatre feel.
Triad Gold series in-wall speakers were specified in a 7.4.2 Atmos configuration, paired with a Yamaha processor and amplifier, while the projection system comprises a Sony 4K projector and a 9 foot wide (2.7m) acoustically transparent Screen Research screen.
“It was quite a challenge with the logistics of getting the screen, rack and seating down a tight staircase to the basement,” Simon tells CE Pro Europe. “Even though everything was measured and checked for fit, it was a tight squeeze!”
Completing the setup is a Panasonic 4K Blu-Ray player, Amazon Fire 4K player and a Sky Q box. A Control4 system was chosen to operate the complete AV system and Lutron lighting via the client’s iPhone and iPad, which was also integrated with the existing Control4 system used throughout the house.
However, this project also presented a challenge that Finite Solutions comes across a few times a year. “We didn’t own the network for the house; it was provided by the client’s IT guys from his company. Despite reviewing everything we needed, we had numerous network control issues with Control4 for the first few weeks and ultimately we replaced the network with our own which resolved the problems straightaway. I think this highlights a common issue for custom installers and the importance of owning the network. Commercial IT companies rarely seem to get it right for large home automation requirements,” he admits.
The theatre was designed so that all AV equipment was hidden, while upholstered wall panelling allowed for acoustic treatments to be easily incorporated.
The room build design was completed by Finite Solutions to allow the client’s existing contractors to build the new stud work walls, run new audio visual and lighting cables and construct the bespoke bar.
Upon completion of the main building and decorating works, Finite Solutions engineers installed all of the audio visual equipment in the room and the main pre built AV rack and acoustic wall panels, after which the electrical contractor installed the lighting control system and light fittings.
The client is said to be delighted with the finished result, using the room regularly for entertaining, watching films and sports.
However, the client is particularly enthusiastic about the bar area. “I think he really likes the whole experience of the room and how it works with a group of friends to socialise in, which was the whole point of the room as you can use it for multiple types of socialising,” says Simon. “The room gets used a lot by the whole family rather than purely as a dedicated cinema, which are of course fantastic, but they do tend to get used slightly less. The Sony 4K projector pretty much stuns everyone, as they are the best out there at the moment for sensible money.”
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