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Orange County, California
Theater & System Design:
Evolution Audio & Video
5341 Derry Avenue, Suite S
Agoura Hills, CA 91301
Glenn Campbell
Getting Big Value in a Big Home Theater
By Jerry Del Colliano

The call came in to Southern California audio/video retailer and custom designer Evolution Audio-Video about designing a large theater in nearby Orange County, but unlike some calls, this was not going to be a cost-no-object system. The trick was that the client wanted his system to look and perform as if it were a cost-no-object system. After a long, competitive bidding process, the client selected Evolution Audio-Video to implement a home theater that was true to his beloved music but was capable of faithfully recreating movies, as well as broadcast HDTV.

Design challenges appeared everywhere during the course of the project. The newly constructed home was stunning and built on a large scale, even by Southern California standards. The theater room, as designed by the architect, was oriented for the front of the theater to go on one wall, but as the client and his wife worked with their interior designer, they ultimately decided, mid-project, to reorient the room so that the theater would be on one of the shorter walls. Quick decisions had to be made on a number of levels. Custom risers were built to accommodate the raised theater seating. Different speakers were chosen in order to accommodate the newly reduced width of the room. Even a door was reversed to reduce the chance that it might swing open and possibly hit one of the beautiful Revel front speakers.

Another architectural feature of the room is its oval dome ceiling. For lighting effects, the ceiling is a gorgeous feature. Acoustically, it creates a sort of an echo chamber, which at first was very worrisome to system designer Jay Frank. Frank, the client and the designer worked to select the thickest carpet to help with the acoustics. Luxurious fabrics were chosen for the window treatments, which radically improved first order reflections in the room. Design Frank relates, “As the furniture arrived and the carpets and window treatments were installed, you could hear a discernable acoustic change in the room, even before you switched on an amp or played a DVD.”

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