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Orange County, California
Theater & System Design:
Simply Home Entertainment
Beverly Hills, CA
Glenn Campbell
Underground Theater Movement
By Jerry Del Colliano

A lot is said about the importance of system design and architecture and clients building their first, large-scale home theater will hear the following from the beginning to the end of the project – great system design is everything. “Everything” in this context includes construction, architecture, acoustics, installation, programming, interior design and, perhaps lastly, the selection of high-performance equipment.

This month’s Revolution Home Theater featured theater is a working example of a world-class installation, with a hard-to-believe twist. This neo-romantic home theater was designed and installed over 10 years ago, yet remains relevant in terms of design, acoustics and many technologies today. As the room is upgraded to HDTV performance and the latest surround sound technologies, it gives us a chance to see some of what system designer Christopher Hansen did correctly to keep this theater relevant and cost-effective over the years.

One of the big advantages going into this south Orange County installation was that Hansen and the client were working with a clean slate of sorts. The existing home is located on what is known as the California incline, the cliffs that rise above many of the beaches on the west coast. The views from homes built on the edge are nothing short of breathtaking and the neighbors and the community association are ultra-touchy about anyone adding on to their home in any way that blocks any of the residents’ sightlines. The client, with his eye on adding a wine cellar, a billiard room and a full home theater, decided to build underground instead of building an additional story. This is a rare feat in California, especially this close to the beach, but the client’s home is on a lot that was too good not to take advantage of the opportunity that presented itself.

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