The Hidden Home Theater

Aside from this estate’s impressive home theater, the family wanted a smaller system for everyday TV watching. 12/04/2006 7:00 AM Eastern

The Hidden Home Theater

Dec 4, 2006 12:00 PM

The following information is courtesy of the 2005 CEDIA Electronic Lifestyles Designers' Choice Awards. For more information on how to become a member of CEDIA, or information on its awards program please visit or call (800) 669-5329.

2005 CEDIA Electronic Lifestyles Winner
Designers Choice Awards: Best Intergrated Home
Level VI ($700,000-925,000)

Electronics Design Group

Aside from this estate’s impressive home theater, the family wanted a smaller system for everyday TV watching. As the center of a large community of family and friends, Electronics Design Group’s client uses their home for entertaining on a regular basis. Since this family room is on the main floor of the home, the client insisted that all the electronics be completely hidden when not in use.

Due to the size of the room’s impressive fireplace and distance to the couches, a 50in. plasma was selected. At first, the installers considered the idea of placing the plasma in a custom frame with motorized artwork. At one of the meetings, the interior designers presented the client with a beautiful tapestry, originally intended to hang over the living room fireplace. Electronics Design Group came up with the idea of installing the plasma behind the tapestry, and installing a motorized shade roller to gather the tapestry. In-ceiling SpeakerCraft AIM5 speakers were chosen because of their ability to pivot the entire speaker baffle toward the listening position. The subwoofer is hidden underneath a fabric-covered table in the back corner of the room.

Hiding the electronics for the room was another challenge. The original cabinet design called for an open wire mesh grill for the doors, in order to display the family’s photos and trinkets. A hidden, touch-latch door was designed into the wall, utilizing some of the adjacent pantry space for the equipment closet. A custom Middle Atlantic Products rack rolls out into the room for equipment servicing. Aside from the room’s dedicated DVD player and high-definition satellite receiver, the client also wanted to share the ReQuest DVD management system and high-definition TiVo unit from the main theater into this and other key rooms in the house. Control of the room’s motorized window shades, lighting, and climate were also a consideration. A Crestron wireless touchpanel allowed us to integrate the central sources from the theater, and provided the client a simple interface for controlling the room’s sophisticated electronics.

Equipment list

  • 1 Chief PSM-2023 static wall mount
  • 1 Crestron MP2E control processor
  • 1 Crestron CNXRMCLV video distribution breakout box
  • 1 Crestron STX-1700CXP two-way wireless touchpanel
  • 1 Crestron TPS-RFGWX wireless transceiver
  • 1 Fujitsu P50XHA40US plasma monitor
  • 1 Marantz DV6400 DVD/SACD player
  • 1 Marantz SR8500 surround receiver
  • 1 Marantz MV8300 D-VHS recorder
  • 1 Middle Atlantic Products custom-configured equipment rack
  • Monster Cable M Series custom-made interconnects
  • 1 Richard Gray’s Power Company SubStation 120V
  • 1 Richard Gray’s Power Company 1200
  • 1 Custom Somfy roller tube
  • 1 Sony SAT-HD300 high definition DIRECTV receiver
  • 7 SpeakerCraft AIM5 in-ceiling speakers
  • 1 SpeakerCraft BASSX 12 subwoofer
  • 1 Vantage Controls lighting control system

    Time and Expertise Worksheet
    Task Hours
    Client Interviews 3
    Electronic Design and Engineering: 10
    Proposal and System Documentation Preparation: 4
    Project Management: 4
    Pre-wire/Rough-in: 6
    Trim-out: 15
    Shop Time for Racking and Testing: 16
    Programming: 24
    Final Installation and Calibration: 30
    Client Instruction: 1
    Interior Design and/or Architecture by your Company: 2
    Interior Design and/or Architecture by Others: 8
    Project Management by Others: 0
    Other time: builder's interior designs, drawings done on paper: 0
    Total Hours to Complete: 123

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