Home Theater Cost Guide

Updated: Jul 22, 2020

Choosing the right Space:

The biggest decision you'll need to make when deciding the home theater location is

where to build it. The best time to design a home theater is during your meeting with the

architect and General Contractor. It will save you hundreds of dollars during the wiring

phase and is preferred by most installers. If you build a home theater in an existing

home; you'll have some construction challenges and need to be creative when

retrofitting the room, additional devices will be needed to expand or extend existing

wiring and cable infrastructure and the aesthetics would not be as pleasing.

You are also limited to the size and function of your theater. Some of the benefits of

retrofitting an existing room include lower cost, fewer construction requirements, and a

good use of existing space. However, the room might not provide the ideal theater

layout, windows and doors could present a problem, and theater noise could become an

issue throughout the rest of the house. If space and your budget allows, you can also

consider building a new addition or use an unused space like a basement or garage.

If neither of those options is possible, identify an existing room that is large enough to

convert into a home theater. It should have room for seating, at least 8ft ceiling height

for a projector and access to pull wiring or enough in the budget to have the holes

needed to wire the room patched and repainted. The plan is to have all wires and most

devices hidden and controlled with a universal control system. While the components

are hidden away they also need to be in a place where they can be easily accessed or

changed in the future.

For new construction, be sure the room is large, free from windows but with good

ventilation, and that the walls are soundproof by starting with thick (at least 1 inch or

better) drywall. Double-wall construction can be used for audio baffles by creating a

dead space between two sheets of thick drywall separated by about 4 inches of space.

Floor electrical outlets and ambient lighting strips also should be built in. In addition,

wiring for speakers and lighting should be run throughout the room. <