Big House, Big AV System Big House, Big AV System Page 1
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Bay Area, California
Theater & System Design:
Steve Ehrsam and Audio Arts
Home Entertainment Environments
14460 Big Basin Way
Saratoga, CA 95070
Email Audio Arts
Glenn Campbell

Big House, Big AV System
January 2005
By Bryan Dailey

When one is building a large-scale house, it is only common sense that the client will want an all-out home theater and AV in nearly every room. When this client called Audio Arts in the Bay Area of California, Steve Ehrsam and his team were challenged to not only build a dedicated theater room but also to come up with AV systems for a good number of additional rooms, including elaborate yet discreet plasma systems in the living room and master bedroom, as well as a whole-house audio system for entertaining. The trick was, just like in any real-world project, for the budget to coexist with all of the other variable expenses that are a part of building a custom home of this scope. Unless someone told you, you would never know from looking at it that this theater was done on a budget. Audio Arts was able to balance the customer’s lustful desires for cutting-edge home theater and convergence while keeping him on budget.

The focal point of the theater in this home is a dedicated room that features an old-world look, with Romanesque columns in the back and elaborate molding along the ceiling. Usually red velvet is chosen in this type of theater, but a unique look that harkens back to the Civil War era is achieved using blue tones with gold accents. Theater designer Steve Ehrsam of Audio Arts made this room much wider than most theaters you will see. To the left and right of the already humungous 133-inch Draper acoustically transparent fixed screen, there are two decorative wall panels that have a soft fabric on them and wall sconces for lighting. Many dedicated theaters are literally squeezed into a spare bedroom or office, but the grand scale of this home spills over to the roomy home theater. The room comfortably seats nine people in the ultra-comfy blue Bass Custom theater lounge chairs with gold piping. To the sides of each row of seats, there are aisles wide enough to have easy access to a hidden dumbwaiter. Two more decorative pillars flank the back row of chairs and more decorative panels with acoustically-tuned material on them provide a nice mix of reverberant and absorptive materials.

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