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The best place to build a home theater system is a room that is 13 feet wide and 20 feet long that is relatively isolated from the remainder of the home. The reason that is should be isolated from the remainder of the house is that you don’t want the sound of your favorite movie disturbing everybody else who is at home. It should also be in a place that doesn’t interrupt any business that may be going on in the home. Some good options include the conversion of a spare bedroom that is a minimum of 12’ X 12’, closing in the space that is on the second floor that is currently open above the formal living room, and building a theater wing off of the family room. It takes a good electrical contractor and carpenter to accomplish the building of a home theater system, especially if you aren’t handy.
Much the same as building any other home addition to your home, building the shell of a home theater is similar with one exception. You should pay particular attention to the insulation. You shouldn’t neglect the interior walls although a rating of R30 is standard for the exterior walls, ceiling, and floors. In order to prevent the sound of the explosion in a movie from disturbing everybody else in your home, you should use R11insulation that is loosely packed. However, even this insulation won’t completely block all of the noise. Once you have prewired the room, you should add some extra sound barriers.
A 7.1 surround sound system is used in the majority of home theaters. This includes one seven channel speakers which are two rear surrounds, two side surrounds, and a right and left surround as well as subwoofer. The electrical contractor will identify the location of where each speaker will be located in order to prewire the 7.1 surround sound system. These locations are the rear surrounds that will be located on the back wall and the individual system will determine just how far apart they should be, the side surrounds on the walls immediately behind the primary row of seating, right/left at ear height on both sides of the screen, and the center surround just below or above the viewing screen.
The electrical contractor will select a location for your audio/video equipment such as the hub that will house your receiver. This hub can be hidden in a nearby closet or in a cabinet within the theater. The electrical contractor will then run cables between each speaker location and the hub. The cables need to be four conductor, 16 gauge or 16-4 at a minimum for the rear and side speakers. For the center, right, and left speakers, a stronger 12 or 14 gauge cables should be used.