The original spoken goal of the entire basement project was to build a semi-sound-isolated music performance space for me, where I could turn up the volume on a guitar amp, record a quiet passage, or compose in peace, without disturbing or being disturbed by the rest of the house.
Using a bit of subterfuge, I was able to expand this to include a bar/party/rec room. First, I started framing the room using some ‘extra’ 2×4s that I had. And after firing up an old video projector on a sheet of drop cloth stapled to studs with a twenty dollar dvd player, I impressed the Family CFO enough to get the go-ahead to add media room to the project, which was the unspoken plan all along.
Overall dimensions of the room are 19' × 24'. The bar is 12 feet long. In the basement, I had four steel support posts that I needed to hide. Two of them I was able to hide inside of walls. The others I was able to hide in the wood columns that flank the bar, which also provided a space to hide metal conduit to run power to the bar and to run low-voltage wire for the media cabinet, which is inside of the bar.
For movies and sports, I’ve put in an acoustically transparent Cinemascope screen on one wall, hung a projector and planned an anamorphic lens from the ceiling. This means that when we watch ultra-widescreen movies like Star Wars, the picture will be wider than HDTV rather than shorter than HDTV. With the acoustically transparent screen, I’ve been able to put three identical front speakers behind the screen so that the front soundstage is as close to seamless as you can get and sound comes from the screen— not from the sides or underneath the screen.
On this site, you can see current photos of where I am in the project, or some past construction photos, or an interactive floorplan, or some details on the bar, or read my blog. If you’d like, you can sign my guestbook by sending me a tip, asking a question, posting a drink recipe, etc.