Hiding home cinema projector, screen and speakers25 May 2010
Home cinema installations can be almost invisible when not in use. We look at a recent installation where the client is the proud owner of a very discreet distributed audio and video solution.
Often, people’s perception of a cinema room is a projector screen on the wall, a large projector bolted to the ceiling with room-dominating, floor-standing speakers and a mass of electronic hardware and wires. This may be fine in a dedicated theatre but not when the room needs to double as a lounge.
A recent installation in a newly constructed detached family home shows that there is another way. The client’s original project brief was for the team to deliver distributed audio and video around the home. In what is now the lounge/cinema room the clients were originally going to use their existing TV and simple two-speaker sound system. These plans soon changed after a visit to the Audiovation showroom in Huddersfield where the company has a demonstration room showcasing a discreet projector-based home cinema.
This system uses a ‘trap door’ projector screen and lift mechanism which retracts fully into the ceiling hiding the projector and screen when not in use.
By using Artcoustic speakers – which combine wall-mounted speakers with artistic facades – the client has true high-end performance without compromising the interior design of the room. The images over the speakers (which are printed onto acoustically transparent cloth) were chosen by the client from Artcoustic’s comprehensive collection. There are also options for providing your own images/fabric if required as well as specifying cabinet colours.
Simple operation of the cinema system, blinds and lights is made possible by the custom programmed touch-screen remote control enabling ‘one button’ operation that lowers the blinds, light levels, screen and projector while switching the amplifier on and starting the Blu-ray or Sky HD box.
As the clients involved Audiovation early on in the project, the company was able to design a comprehensive wiring structure for the property that enabled them to have technology throughout the home but all the main equipment stored out of the way in the office.
Custom programmed Wi-Fi touch-screen remotes are provided in the kitchen/living area and the master bedroom to enable control of the audiovisual system and lights/blinds. In other rooms, in-wall keypads are used to enable control of the distributed audio system.