This current Media Room is the result of three previous media rooms, countless stereo systems, and quite a few years of continued planning, growth and tweaking :-) I still have a way to go and have several upgrades/tweaks planned for the upcoming months. It is a labor of love and many hours of both listening and watching have been enjoyed here. My goal was the media room would be a dual purpose space for both listening to music and watching movies. For the most part I feel I have succeeded.
Goal number two was to build a room that would both indulge my hobby while still providing a real room to actually listen to music and to watch whatever comfortably and enjoyably.
We moved into our current house in 2009. The Media room was custom built over the oversized two car garage and is 18.5' x 22.5' with 9.5' ceilings at the center. All four walls have about a thirty degree tilted in soffit area where the side and rear surrounds are mounted. The ATMOS speakers are ceiling mounted and the front speakers are freestanding. Wiring for the surrounds were pulled by the builder/contractor and are 14 ga. I pulled the ATMOS wiring myself adding it later (now, THAT was a lovely job!). The front speakers (LCR) are wired with my take on "audiophile" speaker wire.
Signal Processing and Amplification
Marantz AV7703 Pre/Processor
Parasound Halo A21 - 2 Channel Power Amp
Parasound Halo A52+ - 5 Channel Power Amp
Parasound ZoneMaster 450 (for the ATMOS) - 4 Channel Power Amp
Yung 300 subwoofer plate amplifiers (2) for the Tactile Transducers
OPPO UDP-203 - UHD 4K Universal Disk Player
Yamaha CDC-755 - CD Changer
Pro-Ject Debut Carbon DC Turntable with Ortofon 2M RED Cartridge See My Review!
Apple MacBook Pro (circa 2014)
Mackie 14 Channel Mixer
Speakers2 - GoldenEar Triton One.R Speakers - front left and right
1 - BG Radia CC-220i Center Channel Planar Ribbon/Hybrid speaker
4 - BG Radia SA320i in-wall Planar Ribbon/Hybrid Speakers for surround and rear speakers
4 - Polk CS-6 In-Ceiling Speakers for the ATMOS (Middle and Rear ATMOS)
2 - Rythmik F18 - 18" sealed box powered subwoofers (900 watts RMS)
2 - Definitive Technology PF-15 15" powered subwoofer (150 watts RMS)
2 - Earthquake Sound Q-10B Tactile Transducers (AKA Buttkickers) One mounted on the rear row raised seating platform and one mounted on the front row shaker platform.
Note: all in-wall and in-ceiling speakers have custom backing boxes lined with 1 inch multi-layer damping material (purchased from Parts Express).
Custom shaker platform built for front seating Tactile Transducer.
2 - Furman Elite 20A Power Conditioners
3 - Leviton 20 amp in-wall surge protectors at equipment racks
4 - Leviton 15 amp in-wall surge protectors at all subwoofer positions.
URC MX9000 Remote Control
URC MSC400 Master System Controller
Passive Acoustic Panels
4 - GIK 2'x4'x2" Diffuser/Absorber Panels
4 - GIK 1'x4'x4" Diffuser/Absorber/Bass Trap Panels
Middle Atlantic 19" double width rack
I've rack mounted all three Parasound amps and the Marantz Pre/Proc
Everything else is either on a fixed shelf, or in the case of the mixer and the computer on a sliding shelf.
Tweaks and Gimcracks
Isolation Platforms - I've created isolation platforms for the OPPO Blu-Ray player and the Pro-Ject Carbon DC Turntable. The platforms are 18"x18" concrete pavers sitting atop Penn Elcom rubber Isolation feet. In the case of the OPPO it did nothing positive or negative to the sound or picture. For the turntable it did help the sound in the respect that the sound is more defined at higher volumes. There seems to be less smear and the sound is more "focused" for the lack of a better word.
Isolation Platforms for LCR speakers and the Definitive Technology PF-15 Subs.
18"x18" Concrete Pavers resting on Penn Elcom Rubber Isolation Feet.
Tactile Transducer Shaker Platform for first row of seating.
Double ¾ Inch MDF Glued and Screwed together. Resting on Penn Elcom Rubber Isolation Feet (18)
SVS SoundPath Subwoofer Isolation System on the Rhythmik F18's Subs
I added a turntable clamp/weight and replaced the felt mat with a nice new cork mat. Each one of these tweaks made an incremental improvement (at least I perceived an improvement) in the sound I was getting from the turntable.
Record Pro Record Cleaning System - Inexpensive ($65), but effective, record cleaning cleaning system.
Leviton remote control lighting for the main recessed lights, Media Shelf lights and the rear row riser lights. Controlled by the URC MX-9000/MSC-400
Rolls Unbalanced to Balanced studio converters for the DTI PF-15 Subs. Used these to make the PF-15's balanced inputs. The Rolls devices are studio quality, passive transformer based, devices.
ART Ground Loop Breaker device used on the unbalanced inputs of the Parasound ZoneMaster 450 and the Yung plate amps.
Cables and Wiring
Balanced cables between Pre/Pro and Amps - Mogami 3080 cable and Amphenol XLR's built by "Worlds Best Cable"
HDMI by Blue Jeans Cable 35' BJC Series One - Projector (2) 6' BJC Series One - OPPO UDP-203 all other HDMI are 3' or 6' BJC Tartan 24 Series cables
All RCA type interconnects I built (well most of them anyway :-) using Belden 1694A cable and solder type REAN RCA connectors.
LCR - Belden 5T00UP 10 Gauge x 2 bi-wire/bi-amp with locking banana plug connectors and spade connectors at each pair on both ends. I built a "Audiophile" speaker cable that can be seen in the room pics.
They do look VERY nice and "audiophile-ly"! As good as they look, it made zero difference in the sound over the simply separate 10 ga wire pairs.
I also DIY’ed Cable elevators.... not for any expected improvement in the sound, but to display my speaker cables :-)
Speakers in-walls and in-ceiling use Belden 14 Gauge contractor grade speaker cable
"Audiophile" Power cables; DIY 12 gauge Belden 83803 used on main power amps DIY 14 gauge Belden 19634 used on pre/pro, ATMOS power amp, Yung Power amps, F18 subs, Triton One.R's and the JVC DLA-RS600U Projector
DIY “Audiophile” power cord using DH Labs Encore - 14ga 3 conductor – shielded - Audiophile Power Cable DHLABS-75520 Hi-Fi King and Red Copper AC Plugs and IEC Connectors and dressed up with Tech-Flex were used on Apple TV and JVC Projector
WAudio 10 gauge Audiophile cable used on OPPO Blu-Ray player
As I said before this room has afforded us much entertainment and enjoyment :-) I'll be forever tweaking and experimenting but that is just because that adds to the enjoyment for me!
Hi Tom, I enjoyed looking at you website as well as your profile here. You are a talented and articulate fellow. I really like your AV room — very festive and decorative. I also have the Parasound A21 (and a Parasound P5 preamp) and share your enthusiasm for it. Happy listening/watching.
It has been a long road to this point :-) I would enjoy two rooms as well but this arrangement is working very well for me.
Pedal Board for the Avid Eleven Rack is just propped up against the legs of the stand so it is out of the way. It is a Behringer FCB1010 on a twenty-five foot midi and power cable so it reaches anywhere I need it to. The Line Six amp has the small Line Six pedal board on a 25" ethernet cable and is stowed behind the amp stand,
If I don't keep it neat and clean "you-know-who" will let me know about it!
Beautiful room! I’m struggling with a media room myself. I’d love to have two dedicated rooms, one for two channel audio and one for making music, but space won’t allow. Where do you put your pedal board for your guitars?
I love how neat your room looks and has room for both.