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Pretty in Pink Home Cinema in Leeds

Finalist for the Best Home Cinema installation Award.
Shortlisted for the Design et al’s International Design and Architecture Awards ’16 in ‘Best Home Cinema’ category.

Best Media Room Installation Experts in the UK, CEDIA Approved.
Finalist at the CEDIA ’16 Awards in ‘Best Media Room over £15K’ category.

“Soft colours and sophisticated touches make this media room the perfect and most familiar place for every occasion.”

Project Location: Leeds
Project Cost: £20,000
Categories: Bespoke Home Cinema

Our client came to us via the recommendation from a friend whom we provided a turn key dedicated cinema room for the previous year.
The clients were not looking for a dedicated cinema room but rather a complete overall of a seldom used lounge to create a refined, relaxing place for the family to enjoy watching TV, Sports and Films together. Having very busy schedules our clients came to us specifically for our full turn key service in which we design, build, decorate and furnish complete games, media or cinema rooms with fully integrated high quality surround cinema systems.

The client was open to ideas but had several key requests and concerns that needed addressing at the beginning of the design process.
The key requirements were for a completely overhauled room design and that was light and airy for TV watching during the day and early evening but had the ability to black out completely for a movie when needed. The client was open to design ideas but the interior design did have to suit an existing sofa and two chaise longs already purchased by the client.

As the media room was below bedrooms sound proofing to a high level was also required as the equipment was to be of high quality and needed to be able to play loudly without disrupting others in the house or neighbours. Lastly ease of use was vital and the simplest method of operating the media equipment, lights and curtains was high on the priority list.

Cinema Room Design

Following considerable design time up front on the general look and feel of the room we presented a mood board specifying all carpets, wall upholstery, fabrics and paint to be used and provided schematics detailing the rooms layout, lighting design, audio visual equipment layout and detailed costings showing how the equipment, building works, joinery and upholstery broke down and our fees to manage and deliver the project. After minor tweaks to the upholstery and equipment specification we were appointed to the project and moved on to provide the detailed design work which specified the make up of the room acoustic build up, wiring, equipment cabinetry, ventilation and upholstery arrangement which was then passed to our building partner and upholsterer for manufacture.

We addressed the key concern of sound proofing by specifying a new sound proofing ceiling, walls and new acoustic door and frame and allowing for extremely heavy drapes which could close over the bay window to as absorb as much sound as possible before it was transferred to the windows. Acoustic wall panels were specified for the room interior to ensure the sound quality would be optimised but all treatments were to be incorporated behind acoustically transparent fabric which allowed for a slick soft interior style in relatively light pink colour which delivered the feminine look the client was looking for an kept the room light and airy not “like a cave” as was her request early on.

Various options for cinema equipment were proposed, delivering different performance and future proofing levels with pro’s and cons and budget variance detailed. The client discussed these options with us and the projectors were demonstrated at our show house as was the difference in sound presentation of B&W, Artcoustic and Yamaha, Rotel and Denon electronics. Following the demonstrations a specification of equipment was configured which provided a suitable level of quality and future proofing.

Ultimately we were appointed to the project as we demonstrated a clear understanding of the brief from the earliest stages and provided a completely managed turn key solution to delivering a transformed room for our clients.

Achieving the Technical Perfection

The primary client requirement for sound proofing was achieved by removing the existing ceiling, and filling all joist spaces with rockwool, fitting resilient bar perpendicular to the existing joists and then fitting two layers of 12.5mm soundboard with a sandwich layer of green glue acoustic compound between the boards and all edges pasted with acoustic sealant. All ceiling penetration for speakers and down lights had acoustic boxes created which were acoustic sealant fixed to the top layer of plasterboard so as to maintain the acoustic barrier.

New MF wall frames were then erected to all walls and double boarded as per the ceiling construction with all electrical outlet back boxes fitted in to acoustic box hoods. The old door frame was removed and a new acoustic door and frame set fitted and sealed.

A lighting design was implemented comprising four circuits of lighting; screen wall and side walls recessed anti glare downlights, central star downlights along with a 5amp circuit for lamps at the rear of the room (client has not yet chosen these at the time of photography). The lighting was 100% 3000K, CRI80+ lamp technology and allowed the creation different lighting moods for different uses of the room and full dimming on every circuit.

The lighting was controlled via a Rako hard wired dimmer pack located in a concealed cupboard at the rear of the room. A new Electrical distribution board was also installed in this cupboard taken from a new breaker on the main distribution board supplied clean power to the lighting, power and AV within the room each on separate breakers. A Rako wall switch engraved with the function provided by each button which operated the lights and electric curtain from silent Gliss.

To allow the room to feel bigger but also create space for in wall speakers to be mounted behind the projector screen a small wood stud frame was built the exact width of the projector screen which allows for what appears to be a shallow equipment cabinet to be built below the screen which actually went through the base of the stud wall and gave us the extra depth needed to fit the AV equipment required in place.

The 7.1 speaker system and AV receiver were all demonstrated at our show facility along with various other systems which allowed the client to select the sound they liked best and having worked with B&W equipment for a many years in particular we feel very confident in its ability to delivery detailed, enveloping and powerful sound better than any similarly priced system we have utilised.

Whilst Atmos configurations were discussed the depth of the new acoustic walls was insufficient to allow the use of in wall mounted speakers (and on wall speakers were not approved for aesthetic reasons) which meant ceiling speakers had to be used for the rear and side channel which in our experience doesn’t lend itself as well to enhancement with additional Atmos height speakers and as budget was a concern the Atmos channels and additional subwoofers were wired for and are considered something the client will add in a couple of years time in addition to adding a new upgraded Atmos receiver.

Following demonstration of the Sony VPL-VW5000 with a Screen Excellence 4k projector screen, this combination was installed as it simply blows everything else out of the water in terms of performance at that price point with HD content, 3D content and native 4K content. Anamorphic projection was also discussed but as we really only advocate this with electric masking screens for maximum effect which therefore meant it was over budget unfortunately however we have wired for masking screen control for future upgrades.
A high quality Oppo blu-ray player delivers superb picture quality and sound quality for optimum viewing of Blu-Rays and an Apple TV allow ad movie streaming and airplay etc. A Kaleidescape Stratos was also added on completion which allows downloaded uncompressed 4k content to be displayed on the screen in perfect quality.

All the AV and control equipment was housed in the custom made cabinetry on slide out shelves for access and the stud wall was then also used for equipment ventilation as the cabinetry allowed for air to enter beneath the cabinet doors which was then pulled by active silent fans mounted at the rear of the cupboard which were then exhausted at the side of the stud wall beneath the screen. This worked very effectively and keeps the equipment cool by pulling air over the equipment constantly when the system in use (and for 15 minutes after operation has ceased). To ensure that the system could easily be reset should a problem occur Olson power control packs provide a quick simply way to cut power and reset any component in the system if needed.

With respect to control the brilliant robust URC MRX-10 processor was installed along with an MX1080 hand held remote control and iPad interface which operated the complete Av system and also controlled the rooms lights, curtains and heating (via URC wall stat).
We have also integrated the system with the gate entry system (existing by others) such that on a guest pressing the buzzer the cinema system will mute and pause if in use allowing you to hear your guests. To keep standby electricity consumption to a minimum we have also integrated with the burglar alarm such that when full set relays turn off the equipment completely (as no one is home). The equipment is then returned to standby when the clients return home and the burglar alarm is unset.

The finishing touch that really made the room was the application of the upholstered wall panels in light pink suede which is wrapped over a combination of absorption and diffusion materials which makes a huge impact on the sound quality in the room and also provides a really luxurious design finish.

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