Home cinema install: Welcome to the AV playroom!

Check out this dedicated home cinema room that looks... groovy

This luxurious cinema room is the end result of a full makeover by North Yorkshire's Harrogate Home Cinema, and is affectionately known as The Modeon by its happy owner. An existing customer of the professional install firm, the project arose when he decided to fulfil a long-term dream and convert the old playroom in his house into a dedicated movie den. 

The initial stage of the build involved the creation of 3D visuals to ensure the owner was getting exactly what he wanted. Then, once a layout design was approved, Harrogate Home Cinema began creating the technical specification, working, we're told, to a 'strict budget'. We haven't been given the exact cost of the whole setup, but we imagine the said budget wasn't exactly miserly...

When it boils down to it

'When we got the nod to crack on with the designs we were all pretty excited,' reveals the installer. 'There was just the small matter of moving the boilers responsible for heating the whole house out of the room and relocating them outside.'

With that initial problem overcome, the rip-out of the room began, in conjunction with the company's joinery and building partner SJF Designs (also based in Harrogate). New wiring was installed to replace the original room fixtures, including six new lighting circuits (all to be Rako-controlled), Cat6, HDMI, speaker wire and control cabling, plus air conditioning ducting and additional power provision.

After cabling was completed, the movie mecca could really take shape. Key to its design is the 15in raised seating stage at the rear, which was constructed to house the second four-chair tier of cinema seating. Additional fittings include false ceilings, wall-panel frames and the crescent-shaped step sitting below where the projector screen would eventually be sited. There were also doors and windows to block up, plus the small matter of custom-built hardware cabinetry. 

Cables were tested and terminated before the decorators were let loose. After plastering, they implemented the chosen colour scheme – matt finishes and dark colours throughout, with blacks for the walls, grey for the ceiling and burgundy for the carpets and fabrics.

The second stage of the conversion was installation of hardware and lighting. First to go in were the two custom-made star ceilings from Starscape. These two independently colour-changing ceiling panels were further enhanced by Rako-controlled ceiling circuits. Rounding out the awe-inspiring lighting scheme are 15 fabric-covered backlit wall panels, here set to an eye-catching shade of purple. RGB strip lighting was selected for its custom colour-matching talents. 

Taking a tablet

The lighting is all handled by a bespoke DemoPad iPad interface, provided by the installer. The owner's tablet is also used to drive the hardware, providing idiot-proof control of kit for watching movies and television, playing games or listening to music. 

Given the lush design, the cinema room's AV electronics are perhaps not as overtly high-end as you might expect. A mid-range Onkyo TX-NR717 routes audio to the multichannel array, which is a 7.1 combination of Monitor Audio CT-380FX in-ceiling speakers, Monitor Audio W380s across the front soundstage and a Sunfire HRS-10 subwoofer. The latter is a diminutive bass bin, with only a 10in driver, but it packs a potent 1,000W amplifier. 

The bigscreen visuals are provided by a JVC D-ILA X70 projector, which fires its contrast-rich imagery onto a three-metre Draper Onyx acoustically-transparent screen (the MA speakers are mounted in the wall behind). Content is delivered by a 2012-era Sony BDP-S790 Blu-ray player, Sky+HD and an Apple TV box, which streams from the owner's media library. Apart from the PJ, none of these slabs of silicon disrput the room's clean lines – all are located in the aforementioned cabinet, supported by a whopping 33U AV rollarack.

Finishing touches in this smart-looking room include commercial-grade popcorn and slushy machines. If it was our den, we'd probably fire both up and not leave until the last kernel had been popped...