DIY Home Theater Design - The Final Reveal

It took quite a bit of research and effort to get the theater done and it is finished!

Actually, the theater was finished a while ago but I realized that we never had the reveal along with additional pics of the finished theater.

So here it is, the home theater final reveal!

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The Home Theater Final Reveal

This was a pretty big project, it took loads of research, calculations and choices to get to the final product. We decided to do all the work ourselves, which saved us a ton of money and also gives us a sense of accomplishment. 🙂

We love, love, love our theater and use it regularly. For the most part there isn’t much we would change.

There are a couple of things, which I’ll cover at the end of the post.

The Beginning (ish)

Unfortunately, we don’t have any before pics and very few during pics. 🙁

We started the home theater project before we had the idea of starting a blog, and apparently we didn’t do a good job of taking pictures.

Anyhow, here are a few pics of the work in progress. 

Laying Out The Home Theater Seating

Before the room was transformed into a home theater, it was a clean slate for us to work in. It was a regular rectangular room with no closets.

You can get an idea of what it was like before in the picture below.

We ordered the seating before we did anything else. There was a sale so we pulled the trigger.

We ordered the seating based on the measurements that they had online. Needless to say we were a bit nervous that the measurements would have been off… luckily everything worked out. 🙂

Once the layout was ironed out I started work on the theater room riser a.k.a. the home theater platform.

And before I got too far into the home theater seating risers construction I tested the height of the risers with the chairs to make sure things were still lining up the way I wanted it to.

That’s me in the last pic testing the home theater riser height with the chairs in place.

Laying Out The Home Theater Seating
Testing The Home Theater Seating Layout With The Height Of The Risers
Laying Out The Home Theater Seating

Working On The Theater Riser

Now that the riser height was ironed out I could finish the riser.

Before I added the plywood flooring to the risers I needed to I relocate the cable line from this room out into the hallway closet, where all the theater equipment was going to live.

I also needed to add outlets to power the recliners and the LED light for the riser stairs.

I put two on the bottom of the back wall, and two in the center of each step. 

Adding Lights In The Risers Steps Portrait
The Riser Flooring For The Home Theater Is Installed

Time For The Good Stuff – The Projector, Screen and Speakers

This part took a lot of research and calculating. Check out these posts for details on the projector, screen, remote, home theater system and speakers.

Once all the calculations were done I tried everything out before making any holes in the walls.

After testing the projector location, I mounted it to the ceiling and ran an electrical outlet right next to it.

Testing The Projector Location
Installing The Wiring For The Speakers
The Home Theater Projector Screen Is Up

The Home Stretch, The Home Theater Entrance Sign and Painting

The entrance sign was not a very hard part of the project. The hardest part was finding the right sized letters to put above the doors.

It did take a while to find the right-sized letters to use, I was able to find these at Target.

Once I found the right letters I:

  • Removed the existing top door molding
  • Cut out a piece of 3/4″ plywood to fill the space between the top of the door and the ceiling
  • Added a crown molding around the top of the plywood and a small piece of molding on the bottom of the plywood to give it more of a finished look.
  • Then centered the letters and painted, voila! 
Testing The Letter Size Above The Home Theater Doorway
The Home Theater Riser Is Complete - Still Need To Paint
Installing The Home Theater Entrance Sign

The Finished Home Theater

Here are a bunch of pictures of the finished home theater.

I love the way the theater came out, it’s even better than I was expecting.

There are a few more things I still need to do, like making a home for the remote control, something like a cubby hole or shelf where it can be charged.

DIY Home Theater Entrance Sign
DIY Home Theater Entrance Sign
DIY Home Theater Entrance Sign From Front
DIY Home Theater Design - The Final Reveal

What I Would Have Done Differently

If we had to do it all over again, there are a few things I would have done differently. Overall, it would be the same home theater – with a few tweaks.

The Stair Lights

I installed lights in the stairs, which is a look that I thought would be great.
The lights I bought were low voltage, which means they have a transformer, and that means they aren’t dimmable.

In the end, I rarely use the lights in the stairs because they are too bright. If I did this again I would buy regular voltage lights that are dimmable. 

The IR Repeater

I bought an IR repeater to have the remote’s signals sent to the closet in the hallway, where the theater equipment is.
The IR repeater worked great, but it turns out the Logitech remote I bought to replace all the remotes uses a radio signal to communicate with the hub (which is in the closet with the equipment) so I no longer need the IR repeater. 

Getting 4K HDR Streaming Content

This was an expensive lesson. The projector itself doesn’t do any streaming, you need to have a device connected to it that will do that for you.
My idea initially was to get a 4K DVD player and that will have 4K streaming. The first DVD player I bought supported 4K Netflix but the Vudu app on it did not support HDR.

I was building up a movie library on Vudu and wanted to have it in HDR if that was a possibility. So I went on a quest looking for a 4K DVD player that supported Vudu in HDR.

I found one and it worked great, but it was a bit pricy and the menus were kinda slow to get to the streaming apps. I tweeted the macros on the Logitech and got it to work correctly, but slow. As a DVD player it was really good, and the streaming apps were there – just slow to navigate the menus.

Then for some reason, I went and bought a Roku.

Holy cow, that was a game-changer!

It supported 4K everything, HDR everything, and was lightning fast!

If I had to do this again I’d get the cheaper 4K DVD player to play the Ultra-HD DVDs and use the Roku for any Streaming apps.


The Entire Shopping List

Here’s a list of everything that we are currently using in our home theater.

You can click on the picture to buy the same one for yourself.


Designing a Home Theater - The Video Projector - Epson Home Cinema 5040UB 3LCD Home Theater Projector with 4K Enhancement

Projector Screen

Designing a Home Theater - The Fixed Projector Screen - Elite Screens - A Fixed Projector Screen

The Projector BackLight Kit

Designing a Home Theater - The Fixed Projector Screen - The LED Kit

The Amplifier

Designing a Home Theater - Home Theater System - Yamaha TS-R7810

The Remote

Designing a Home Theater - Home Theater Remote - Logitech Harmony Elite Remote

The Passive Amplifier

Designing a Home Theater - Home Theater Subwoofer Amplifier

Roku Ultra

Roku Ultra

The Speakers

Designing a Home Theater - Home Theater Speakers - Acoustic Audio HD728 in-wall ceiling home theater 7.2 surround 8 inch speaker system

DIY Home Theater – Finished!

There you have it, pics of the home theater, during the construction and after the DIY home theater was finished.

I hope you find some ideas and tidbits of info in our project that will help you with yours.

What would you do differently in your home theater? Let me know in the comments below!

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DIY Home Theater Design - The Final Reveal - Portrait

About Steve

Hi, I'm Steve. My wife Sandy and I have been doing DIY projects for years now and we finally created a blog to help share our projects and ideas.

We hope you find these posts useful. 🙂

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