My home theater space is actually my bedroom. I live in a big old house in Berkeley California in which the attic space has been converted into a living area. This attic space is where my home theater and bedroom are. It is a kind of funky room, the ceilings are all angled and at its highest point is only seven feet. The room gets cold in the winter and hot in the summer, but it is a neat space and I love it. The room is twelve and half feet wide and about forty feet long, but the area that I use for the theater is only twelve and half feet by seventeen feet. So the theater takes up about half the room.
To see a panoramic view of the room (warning large picture 141KB) click the picture below.
I haven’t done much in the way of theater decoration. I have put up curtains around the screen, painted the theater half of the room black and put up rope lights.
I have dark green velvet curtains around the screen, which made for a huge improvement in image quality, the velvet really sucks up all the stray light and gives the screen the hanging in air feeling. I hung the curtains before I painted the room and they made a bigger impact before the repaint.
Painting the room black was a drastic step but it was well worth the effort. If you can get away with it, I highly suggest painting your walls a dark color, it really helps the image quality tremendously. The less stray light that hits your screen the better, so if you can eliminate reflections with a dark color it also really helps to absorb into the movie. When you really don’t have anything else to look at in the room or things to distract you it really helps keep your eyes focused on the screen.
I have also added light ropes to my theater. The light switch to my room is actually outside of the room, and I have lost track of the amount of times that I would close the door and sit down to watch a movie and then realize that I had left the lights on. So of course I had to get up open the door and turn the lights off. The rope lights solved this problem for me. The best part about the light ropes is I have them on remote control so I don’t even have to get my lazy ass up off the couch to turn off the lights any more, just press the button on the remote and off they go. The bad part about the remote is it works on RF and not IR so I couldn’t program it into my Netremote system since it only handles IR. I have been looking into getting some X10 stuff that will allow me to control the lights via Netremote. Once I can incorporate them in with Netremote it will be very cool. I will be able to make the dim on when I hit pause while a movie is playing and make them dim back off when I hit play again.
The room is far from perfect but it gets the job done and I do the best I can within its limitations. Sure, I would love a dedicated room and all but that is going to have to wait until I have a house of my own and a whole lot more money than I currently do.