False wall questions

J

jostenmeat

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#41
That's some nice looking wood. They look rather large for a screen frame. What size is your screen going to be?
126", which I think might be one of the "standard" sizes offered as a prebuilt screen. The savings are going to be considerable. Even with all of the fabric, wood for the false wall, ooks, pair of PSB towers, cinder blocks, paint for the ceiling, my first multimeter, yada yada, I'll still be pocketing hundreds compared to just the pricing of the prebuilt.

Of course, absolutely none of the wood will be visible. The screen wood will be wrapped in Fidelio velvet, and the whole wall otherwise will be black utility speaker cloth. I believe I'm going to velcro a side section of the speaker cloth for access, maybe even both sides.
 
GO-NAD!

GO-NAD!

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#42
126", which I think might be one of the "standard" sizes offered as a prebuilt screen. The savings are going to be considerable. Even with all of the fabric, wood for the false wall, ooks, pair of PSB towers, cinder blocks, paint for the ceiling, my first multimeter, yada yada, I'll still be pocketing hundreds compared to just the pricing of the prebuilt.

Of course, absolutely none of the wood will be visible. The screen wood will be wrapped in Fidelio velvet, and the whole wall otherwise will be black utility speaker cloth. I believe I'm going to velcro a side section of the speaker cloth for access, maybe even both sides.
I know what you mean about saving a lot by building your own screen. When I was talking with the sales rep about the Pana PJ, I asked out of curiosity how much it would cost for an AT screen in the size range I was interested in. It would be about the same price as the PJ!!!:eek: I can't imagine how they can justify such a markup.

Yeah, I realize the wood will be covered. It's just that quality wood usually looks nice, as well. I plan to use the same velvet for mine.

Hmmm, I could fit a 126" screen on my wall - if I didn't need to put a frame around it.:rolleyes::D

I thought about velcro as well. But then I started to wonder how difficult it would be to attach it evenly. I'm also considering the possibility of making large grills, using speaker grill plugs. Quick to put on, quick to take off.
 
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J

jostenmeat

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#43
Yeah, I think BMX was recently talking about how the "best value oriented" products are not often displayed at dealer showrooms, because well they need to make a profit. Brands like Draper and Dalite can easily be in the Pana PJ range, but don't ask about the best stuff like Stewart.

Yes, what I liked about the screen wood was just how darn straight it was. The fact that it's supposed to be very inert sealed the deal. At first, I was a little bummed about not finding the right boards of maple, if only because it is such a common wood used to make instruments. Ok, mahogany (whatever real or true or authentic mahogany is),sometimes is used on instruments, but not usually on the finer ones. I showed my friend a couple of my instruments, and he completely geeked out on the ultra close grain of the German spruce I had, saying there is no way he could find that if he tried. Anyways, enough of wood talk.

I am also considering making a grille of sorts. However, I think I'm just going to probably velcro "loosely" for now, because it's easier, it will be flush, and since the front half of my HT is a cave, any imperfections might be impossible to notice anyways. I do not expect to have to go fiddle behind the screen wall often at all, therefore I'm hoping I will be ok.
 
J

jostenmeat

Audioholic Spartan
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#44
Some good progress, until I hit a mental roadblock, which is stopping me from applying fabrics, and that is the second guessing of the method to mount screen. I think I will go with what my friend advises, which is flat black drywall screws. Right into the front velveted frame, into the false wall. He believes that "the best way is always the easiest way", and that if I ever wanted to do machine screws, I can always do so later. However, this idea implies that to get behind the false wall, I have to take off the screen (no velcro of speaker cloth on wall). (My other idea was to velcro a side or both sides of the wall, and to screw from behind the false wall into the screen frame.) I hope the reflectivity of black screws buried in velvet would not be an issue.

So, he told me over a beer how to apply the fabric. I will use 3M Super 77 for the first time, and do the corners or any area where two pieces of fabric overlap last with the spray. I will use a very sharp razor blade to cut through both, peeling off the segments one at a time, then finally use the adhesive at the corners (the fabric is already glued in the "middle"). I will pull only moderately at the beginning, let the flaps just fall at the end. After all this, then I will actually pull harder to staple to the rear. I have to be 100% sure on mounting method before I do this, because once it's on, there's no going back.

I will use 2x 6" wood screws to both and top of false wall, to fasten to ceiling and floor.

The false wall was built a tad too tall only on the left side. I took off a bit of paint when "dry fitting" it, but my only real concern is to make sure I don't take any texture off the ceiling. I think to plane the top would be just too much, and I don't think I want to deal with taking it apart and re-cutting.



I had fun reallocating/installing many of my treatments. I have this ultra fugly resonance inside my walls, near the ceiling. One friend thinks it might be some metal-on-wood reinforcement. All I know is I'm really glad to put the 242s up there (oh man, what a difference),give the 244s a true 45 deg angle now, and have a much better application of the RT HF Mondo's. I replaced the black fabric covering the window with a $5 piece of BOC.



Among my many firsts in the recent months, I got to use a hacksaw to cut the splines off the screen yesterday. Yippie.

My components have window tint liberally applied everywhere to tame ambient light, and the Crown has black tape on both display and power light, because they are just wicked bright.

I had placed a couple of panels on the back wall above sub, but then I realized how much better the front wall spots would be. I had to take down some art for this, might put it back up. Oh yeah, I can't recommend OOKS enough for hanging either panels or art (another first). Oh yeah, the use of Titebond was another first as well.

 
J

jostenmeat

Audioholic Spartan
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#45
Just one question: What lights do people use, on the floor pointing upwards, to be able to show off the speakers? Some shots I've seen look really cool . . . but I can't/don't want to do them for the ceiling (if only because they would take possible future height speaker locations). Hm, I might not have much space to work with on the other hand, as the speakers will only be about 1-1.5" away from the wall's fabric. Here is one of the cool shots I know of, and I link (and don't post image) so that people don't freak out or think that it might be mine or something . . . photo

Ok what do I still need to do: Spline in the screen fabric. Get the wall truly plumb, and then drill it in. Oh yeah, finally apply velcro strips for the outer parts of the speaker cloth for access. Of course after all this, re-do video and audio calibrations.

My friend insists that getting it plumb is everything, and whatever level issue I have, I just have to deal with it. Luckily, it seems to remain level no matter what I do, so I'm happy about that so far, knock on wood (literally).

I tested samples of velcro on cloth, and I am happy to say it holds very tightly, which makes my life much simpler (and is totally welcome at this point).

Some of the things I've done and or picked up: Glued and stapled fabrics. The bottom portion of the speaker cloth ended up having some sag, and so I was glad I could still pull it off on the upper length, where I then just stretched harder and stapled instead. I opted to try a liquid contact cement instead of the spray for this part. I think I've thrown away three brushes already, since I used two sizes for the wall, and had one for the gluing of screen frame.

I am so sick of incessant trips to Home Depot, JoAnns, and my local high end lumber store, that I just try to pick up a lot more when I go. I'll just return a few things at the end, drywall screws, perhaps a couple of plumb bobs since I also got a longer level, the twine for them, maybe the drop cloth too (though I should probably keep it),since I effectively ruined my current one when spray gluing. Yes, I know, I got plastic since then . . .

I bought a lot more speaker fabric, $40 worth, which is probably totally wasted now as I didn't end up using it to cover the front wall, as was my recently devised plan. See, I was thinking of not using black backing after all for best possible audio, but then I found that I could scrounge up enough scrap speaker fabric, Fidelio velvet, and other cheap black fabrics to make a ugly job of light control. Mission accomplished for the most part, for both the ugly and the light control. Yes, I would prefer that it looked good behind the wall even if no one will ever see it, but I thought it was in my best interests to use the remaining black hole Fidelio. I dunno, there obviously wasn't enough to cover that little gap so maybe it's a bad decision. The outer extremeties of white will hopefully not matter much since the frame will go "in" by 5 inches. Oh wait, subtract 1.5", so make it 3.5".

I recently decided for sure on using 2 hole brackets to secure screen frame, as is done in one of the two Seymour example PDFs. They only have to pull in the frame, so to speak, as the false wall itself bears the screen's load.

Wrapping the velvet on the screen, I inhaled so much glue I think I was high for a day and a half. It was a major PITA, because I am suspecting that the 3M somehow got the fabric to shrink, so that what should have been close to perfect cuts were now just too short and by a good amount. It took some stressing of the fabric, and a prayer for it to work out (all 4 corners were last). It came out fantastic, and I've tried taking a few close up shots, but they just all come pitch black even with bright lights. Anyways, there is no way I would have been successful with this without the help of my friend.

I picked up a board of plywood to "rest" the screen fabric on, to hopefully make splining it much easier. My local HD doesn't carry foam board it appears, and JoAnn's only had regular foam at a much higher price.

Even though the brackets and nice screws I picked up probably won't be visible at all, I still went at 'em with spray paint. I suspected my friend's idea of drywall screws drilled into the front was a very bad one, but after seeing the Fidelio in person, I realized it was truly the worst idea possible! haha.


While I was thinking of improving center audio without the BB, I then wondered how much better the AT fabric would perform over the stock grille, if at all, because of all of the plastic. The two diamond shaped cutouts are over the tweeter and upper mid's port. Well, I guess plastics would primarily hurt the HF, so maybe the grille still performs better than the XD, if only on paper . . . who knows . . .


A shot of the finished screen frame, resting against the curtain. Close up shots of the screen frame are impossible, a couple of pics came out nothing but pitch black. Oh gee, the false wall's screen cloth looks like it's sagging on the bottom left, but it isn't.


Mock setup of the speakers to get an idea of what's going on. Yeah, it all looks haphazard and ugly, but I just made do with the scraps I had towards both light control and therefor audio (by ridding my need of the backing). The big length of speaker cloth is to cover the white panels, and I'm pretty sure you can tell where the scrap pieces of velvet went . . . I got the cinder block stands idea from this thread. You may note that the center speaker is not flush with the middle black treatment, and yes after measuring the wall itself, I am off to the right by 1.25" after going to town with a rubber mallet in getting it to be roughly plumb. It's really stuck good now, I don't think I'm going to move it to the left for a few reasons I will not get into, and I will have to wait for a friend's help to get it plumb and drilled. Maybe as early as tomorrow evening.

Oh I almost forgot, but the new center speaker there was from my recent reclamation project that I probably couldn't have done without the assistance of fellow AHers. I thought it would be cool to have it front and center. :)

edit #78: maybe I should use the BB after all, because of the reflectivity of the center's drivers. I could use the original grille too, but the BB would give greater overall light control. Hm, maybe my time was wasted on the ugly scrap collage. Well, I guess more light control doesn't hurt.

 
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J

jostenmeat

Audioholic Spartan
Ratings
3,052 1
#46
GO-NAD!, I just wanted to share a couple of things from my learning curve while they are still fresh, and even then I'm sure I'll forget something.

If I just stuck more with the staple gun, rather than spline, sprays, glues, I think life would be much simpler.

Putting in the screen fabric was a major pain, for me*. Remember to pull in the direction of the weaves, because I don't think the 2nd PDF addresses this tip, only the simpler first one, using the stapling method.

The fabric is supposed to be very, very sturdy, but I guess you can still hurt it; mechanical compromise is the main enemy, and don't throw/fold over the material getting in your way like I once did in haste and unending work (because I only read about this afterward). Over stressing will cause the holes to become diamond in shape. I started looking as best as I could to make sure everything was fine, but TBH, the holes are so darn tiny, I can't tell what shape they are, I guess I need a magnifying glass or something. I used my sample right next to it, and it seems identical.

I had most or nearly all of it splined, but it just never came out flat, even when going at it for a long time. I then proceeded with a hybrid version w/ stapling, only to completely give up, to go 100% staples. I believe I finally have a smooth screen now.

According to the 1st PDF (but I think it's the old skool CenterStage, not XD, not sure there?) this stuff only has a 1% give (and if XD has smaller weaves, I would suppose there is even less give now). When trying the spline, I did try to "train" the fabric by using the tool to start fitting the fabric in, but anyhoo. . .

Anyways, I would consider the staple gun as a nice friend with both fabrics and screen material. I went through a lot of pain and sweat last night, with raw knuckles from so much pulling. While I'm glad I got the velvet all nice, I do have to wonder if stapling would have come out just as well with less work.

I also drilled the four 6" screws to secure the plumb false wall.



 
J

jostenmeat

Audioholic Spartan
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#47
Oh yeah, I also used leftover foam tape meant for mounting drivers from my Danley build to hopefully further dampen any vibrations between false wall and screen frame. The speaker cloth is really thin to begin with, although the velvet would probably be helping the cause.

It may have been implied, but when I said I had raw knuckles, I recommend wearing gloves. :eek: I did quite a bit after my knuckles got chewed up. I sometimes took one off to smooth screen with one hand. 99% of the time I'm working with the excess. The main reason not to soil the back of the material is that if anything stained the front, I could just take the material out and flip it, as I've seen Seymour advise to others.

edit: next things to research are how to clean the XD, and how to clean velvet! I have researched the first probably, but I sure don't remember anything right now.

 
GO-NAD!

GO-NAD!

Audioholic Ninja
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#48
Thanks JM, for relaying your experience. To be honest, when you said you were going with the spline method, I thought to myself, "man, that looks like going the hard way to me". And, after seeing what you went through, it just confirmed to me that I should go with the staple method. So, thanks for that! :)

Oh, and thanks for all the photos!
 
J

jostenmeat

Audioholic Spartan
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#49
Part I: Finishing Up.

I AM DONE. :D Ok, at least all the constructing is, video cal is 95% done, and audio cal is halfway there. Thanks again to those who had input and feedback for me earlier in this thread.

I think I see a bump in the velvet in the photos, bottom, just left of center, and I pushed/pulled at it with my finger tips, so hopefully it's perfect there now.

I also wonder if I should have painted the framing wood, particularly the bottom length, because I notice it in the photos. I think I'm fine though, because I don't normally have this lighting arrangement with all of the track lighting pointed towards the front for work purposes, and now photography purposes. I do wonder though. Oh well, too late now!

Both sides are attached at the extremeties with velcro, at 3 spots, top/middle/bottom. I can't ever get the speaker cloth to be perfectly smooth all across it seems, particularly at the bottom, but at least it's not visible from most viewing angles, and definitely not when the lights are off. I believe that this was the best method, as to take the screen on/off to access the rear would just not be cool.

It appears I took off a bit of paint where it can actually be visible at the very top/left (where most of my mallet blows took place). If the cloth sags there, it can be visible. I'm not sure if I'll try to touch it up there; we'll see if it ever becomes an issue again, or a frequent one at that.

I only used four brackets after all, two on each side, about a foot from either top or bottom. To do so, I had to cut little slits in the speaker cloth to get to the framing on the other side. I suppose if my frame/screen boundary(s) rattle with big LFE hits , I may add more brackets. I hope to be fine with velvet all the way around, and some foam tape as well at the bottom.

For the razors to cut the slits, I really don't know what to think of these Feather razor blades I've used for this project. Yeah, they are way sharp, but I think they do wear fast, but they're so darn thin and flimsy it's sorta hard to know when an edge has dulled. I think a lot of my work might have been easier with sturdier blades, even at the expense of some sharpness.

More light control: I don't remember if I said it, but I put fabric on the floor behind the wall. I also put patches of black cloth on the fronts of all three cinder blocks, and even the lower wood panel of the center speaker (my speaker cloth is only so wide, so it couldn't reach the bottom maybe by about half a foot). No, I couldn't be bothered to cut a long piece of cloth again, to be stapled.

All in all, I learned a LOT, even if only little things about this and that, but they all add up. It also proved to be quite a workout for me. Well, I think that covers most of it, so without further ado . . .

Bracket, no flash. I like my solution, but now I really wonder how people mount theirs.


From the left.


From the right. You can make out the right speaker's drivers.


From the middle, with dimmer lights, still pointed forward toward screen.
 
J

jostenmeat

Audioholic Spartan
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#50
Part II: First Impressions.

Well, this thread was originally about a false wall, but I'm going to talk about the screen here, because that was the whole reason for the wall to begin with. So, IMO, this screen material is a no brainer for the money, assuming you sit roughly double digit feet or more away from it. I for one cannot detect any texture whatsoever from the seated position or even closer. This material has been said to be one of the most color-accurate available, and I am coming from on of the least color-accurate in the Dalite HP. Ok, well the colors do seem to be more accurate, with a greater and more defined pallette it seems to me, but OTOH I do think I'm also getting more familiar with the Spears disc too though. There is also the whole placebo thing, but my point is that this idea was all for the audio, but I think the video has improved a lot too!

There is no question that obtaining an outboard CMS with colorimeter should help tremendously with my rig.

I ran Audyssey MultEQ XT, and it bumped my center speaker by 2db relative to the mains, which is caused by the weave. I will likely have to run it all again, because I need to check/recheck sub settings/eq that I want to do prior to XT.

Bye bye midbass boosts from having center speaker too close to floor, and MTM lobing at the extremeties. Bye bye off-axis dropping of brightness with a retroreflector. Hello much improved visual and aural performance at the extremeties. Hello best acoustic match, and hello best panning possible.


Some screenshots. I didn't even bother with long exposure, which I now know I should have. The first two are from The 400 Blows, my personal reference title for black detail. When being so taken aback by this trait, I asked around, wondering if B/W films just have some inherent advantage. Well, Josh Zyber taught me that this title is one of the rarer gems that don' suffer from artificial contrast boost, and that it doesn't really have to do with being B/W. Watching live, you can see a clear checkerboard pattern on the kid's jacket, with details of the fabric as well. In the photo you can't see jack. My point is that the PQ looks waaaay better than what I'm giving you here. Of course, screenshots are generally said to be useless, but at least they're fun. I will try to take more shots later, but with longer exposure, instead of just point/click.





From one of my favorite demo titles, Creatures of the Deep episode, from Life as narrated by Attenborough. This episode is perfect for a light controlled, large screen system.



While I still think Ratatouille remains the best as far as animated PQ, I wasn't going to skip 10 previews to take a couple of shots. So, I thought of Surf's Up instead. They purposely added "grain" to the movie to give that old school surf documentary look.





Carice because she is pretty even immediately after vomiting.



Kill Bill 1/2 are perhaps the best in PQ, out of what I own, as far as live action goes. I'm sure I have others that are on or close to the same level, but I sure can't think of anything off the top of my head that surpass them. There are better shots to be had, but I just grabbed this shot since it's so close to the beginning.



Concert BDs, I have a fair amount, but I only put in two so far. My tweeter is pretty much smack dab in the center of the screen, and it's GREAT!

Brandenburg #6.



Beethoven Violin Concerto.



Tchaikosvky Pathetique.

 
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J

jostenmeat

Audioholic Spartan
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3,052 1
#51
Ok, I am wondering if I have overstressed the fabric, or have damaged it permanently. Or that maybe this is normal after fixing/stretching? Hmm.

I think* Seymour said that if it's pulled too hard the holes become diamond shaped? They look square in the photo, right? I tried lining up my sample with the tilt, and you can see that the screen material is definitely more pulled apart . . .:confused:

If it's true that there is only 1% give, and if it happens to be true that I shouldn't go past that threshold, uh oh.

 
J

jostenmeat

Audioholic Spartan
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3,052 1
#52
OK, LOL, Chris said I'm fine, what a relief, haha. That if I take the sample and flip it around, it will look identical. Whew! :eek:

I reran XT again last night, but this time remembering to hit up the sub settings/EQ first. The Crown Bandmanager software is so cool, it really jacks up the value of their amps IMO. I applied high Q notch filters at 54hz and 99hz, then I ran Audyssey with those cuts, and then I finally added a shelving filter at 20hz. Now, I really am done! woohoo.
 
J

jostenmeat

Audioholic Spartan
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3,052 1
#53
I am happy to have finished my project before the long weekend, because as I predicted there has been a lot of viewing going on with family and friends. Between its completion and tonight, I will have watched Robin Hood, Book of Eli, Bolt, Diary of a Wimpy Kid, The Day After Tomorrow, The Sound of Music, Creatures of the Deep, and there's probably something else in there too. I only own Bolt and Creatures of those, all the others were brought to my place.

Comments have ranged from "This is better than 3D!", to "Your speakers are freaking me out!", and of course to the obligatory, "If you wanted my unsolicited opinion, I would tell you that you're completely insane!".

I cannot recommend the Seymour material enough, for the money. It looks fantastic too. A compromise that I did forget about was that since it's now angular reflective, I now suffer more in terms of offaxis ambient light during the day, when I don't enjoy absolute light control. I've done a pretty good job, but not a perfectly good job there. Still quite enjoyable, but still best at night.

Of course being the obsessed nut that I am, I am already looking towards future upgrades. At first I was thinking I would love to build a new front three as my first DIY speakers, but then I remembered I want to try height speakers, and the effort to build 5 speakers with the associated costs and effort has me put that idea aside. I am also just slightly concerned with the mismatch to my surround speakers. I have been asking around about PJs, but it seems the JVC RS series really hasn't come down much in price at all, relative to what I paid for mine. So, I am to deciding between processor+heights, or CMS+colorimeter, for my next upgrade. Depending on the colorimeter chosen, the first combo will be more expensive, or identical in cost.

So, I tried my first long exposure shot ever. I didn't even try any other length of exposure, but only a single shot at 3.2 seconds. The bottom photo is it, the first one being the photo that I have posted here already. The mic boom and adapter that I obtained for Audyssey calibrations has now found another use in taking long exposure shots.



 
ParadigmDawg

ParadigmDawg

Audioholic Overlord
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#54
It's freakin awesome buddy.

Now take some shots so I can understand where everything is including your gear.

Also remind me which room this is.

Great job!
 
J

jostenmeat

Audioholic Spartan
Ratings
3,052 1
#55
Thanks Dawg. Maybe one day I will get around to starting a member system thread, but who knows if and when. I've always been pretty shy about sharing pics of my system, and FWIW this thread here is by far the most I've shared in this regard, any and all types of forums included even after all these years. I hope you don't mind my reticent nature in this particular regard. The room is a great/bonus room that was created by the previous owner where another room's wall was knocked out to allow such a space. I am fortunate in that regard, even if my place has terrible resonances in general, in the walls. Anyways, sorry that I won't oblige as much as you'd like me to.

The gear itself is on the back wall, as I posted earlier in this thread. I decided to throw one up here after adk mentioned he doesn't ever remember seeing a pic of my rack, after I started a thread about MA racks. Well, he never saw one before because I've never posted a pic of it before (see, this really is the very most I've ever shared). I could have fit the monster sub behind the false wall too, but I was actually worried about lopsided and/or incorrect diffraction effects if it happened to act like a wall between two of the three speakers.


A bonus pic just for you, the gear in the dark. Hm, maybe I should put a bigger piece of window tint on the OTA tuner, haha.
 
D

dem beats

Senior Audioholic
Ratings
49
#56
How did I miss your thread!

Awesome in every way. I have no idea how I missed this, but wow it's a great set up!
 

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