Home Decor Help
- Samar Bolis

Creating Your Dream Media Room

Silence. Dim lights. Take a seat. 

This is how things go on in a media room. Most of the time, it isn’t just used as a space to watch movies.

Home theater, home cinema, media room, or theater room, whichever you decide to call it, is a room designed with home audio and visual systems for entertainment. Generally, it is a multipurpose facility or space guarded with a sound surround system, cozy seats, and outfitted with a television having an extremely large screen. For so many homeowners, it is one thing or a lot of things; a game room, a cool place to hang out with friends or spend time with family, or an awesome area to entertain guests.

Benefits of Media Room

  • Improves socialization: one primary purpose of media rooms is to create a quiet and peaceful environment for guests or family members to spend time together. It can be utilized as a spot for hangouts, private viewing parties, or playdates for kids.
  • Increases or improves the value of the property: media rooms have a better return on investment. The multiple options offered by this facility make a building desirable, attractive, and appealing to potential buyers. They are thought to return about sixty-five percent of the actual cost of building or construction.
  • Versatility: This is, by far, the biggest selling point or advantage of media rooms.
  • Private facility: unlike public theaters or cinemas, everything is controlled within your reach. You can afford to pause a movie or select from different options. This is just one of the best parts, you have a media room right in your home accessible anytime, any day, and for whatever use.

Features of a Media Room

  • Large screens: what’s a media room without a large screen? Televisions with ample screens are the right fit for any media room. The size of the screen allows a clear and vivid view from any angle and distance.
  • Internet and technology: media rooms have transited from just DVD players and television to streaming music and movies from the internet. Multiple technology and devices are connected and incorporated to create an enjoyable experience.
  • Flexible seats: unlike what most homeowners may think, a media room is more than just a room to sit in front of a big screen which is why flexible movable conversation seats are more suitable for use. Furniture like loveseats and recliners are good examples.
  • Sound surround system: draperies, textured walls, carpets, and fluffy sofas can absorb the sounds and filter random noises that are capable of disturbing the ambiance. Recreation of a good impact requires a sound surround system of about 5.1 to 13.1.
  • Adjustable lighting: since the goal of having a media room is most at times to create a cinematic environment, dim lights are the right kind of lighting to install. Picture quality is enhanced and improved in a darkened room. In addition to dim lights, blackout lighting and drapes contribute to the cinematic ambiance.

Creating Your Dream Media Room

  1. Decision making
  1. Room choice or location
  1. Control center
  1. Protective measures
  1. Soundproof
  1. Multi-functional media devices
  1. Comfortable furnishings
  1. Decision Making

As already mentioned, a media room can be anything else but a place to sit and watch a movie. Creating the perfect media room for your home requires you to take the first step by deciding if it will be a multi-functional space or designated for a particular use. This would enable you to know how to properly lay your plans out and budget for what your media room requires.

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  1. Room Choice or Location

This is the biggest decision you would make in this process. It is one determinant that detects how little or how much you enjoy the ambiance of your media room. If you are building a new home, it is best to consider this in the early planning stages especially, if your budget and space permit it. This would help you avoid the challenges you would face if you decide to construct one later on.

In cases where you decide to own a media room along the line, the most suitable places include the basement or the garage of your home. Both rooms can easily be reconfigured to fit this project. Even though an ideal media room should have a high ceiling for the mounting of a projector, the basement which has a low ceiling is the next best room choice. This is because isolation of sound, control of light, and wiring would be achieved easily with an exposed basement ceiling. 

However, in the absence of both options, deciding between the rest of the already existing rooms in the house is a go-to option. This room of choice has to be large enough to be repurposed. 

A media room requires unique qualities, which is why you should be particular and intentional about where you situate it. An ideal space or room for this project should have the following features;

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  • The area is large enough for comfortable seats that can be positioned at distances appropriate for viewing.
  • Lacks access to natural light: Too much brightness can ruin the cinematic ambiance that should be recreated.
  • Located far away from other rooms that bustle with activities or a private area: This is to avoid disturbing others in neighboring rooms or houses with sound vibrations.
  • Has more than one door or an entrance with two doors, just like with actual cinemas.
  • Has a high ceiling or a ceiling that is high enough to mount the projector at a good distance to avoid the sounds and heat emitted by it.
  • The position of this room should preferably be directly above the basement of the building (if any). This is because wiring would be made easier when run over or in a basement.
  • Floors should preferably have tiered flooring. This enables a better viewing position.
  • The ideal room should have extremely good ventilation to make up for the absence of windows.
  • Do not choose rooms with windows or rooms directly below a bedroom. This is because even with effective sound absorbent features, the sounds still travel outside through the windows.
  • While creating a media room requires a large space, ensure that your desired room is not too wide, especially not much wider than the TV screen. Choose rooms with great depth.
  • Your newly constructed media room should be structured and arranged to contain digital and video cameras, Blu-Ray discs, portable devices like iPad and iPods, DVD and CD players, internet or WiFi, cable and satellite services, and broadcast television.
  1. Protective Measures

A media room demands a lot of high technology devices, so it is best to ensure during wiring that surges and electrical spikes from electronics, internet lines, and mobile phones are avoided. This is done by the connection of all equipment devices to a surge protector, especially in cases where your home or building does not have a system for protection from surges. 

A surge protection system or a surge protector hinders and blocks excess electrical energy or power capable of damaging equipment and electronics. The excess electricity is then redirected and sent to the ground; this is why the ideal installation of surge protectors is by proper connection to grounded electrical sources.

Features of good surge protectors

  • Surge protectors used should be certified; UL listed and rated.
  • Has an electrical rating of at least one thousand joules; the higher the better.
  • Has fast and efficient response.
  • It meets the requirement of industry standards.
  • Capable of managing strikes of lighting.
  • Has outlets for AC adapters that are well-spaced.
  • Has indicators that show the current status.
  • Protects against surges and spikes.
  1. Control Center

The incorporation of multiple devices could get your media room stocked with several remote controls, even up to ten. Juggling back and forth switching from one remote to another or looking for an exact one for a particular device can ruin the experience, not to mention that you might have to do some soul searching in a dark room while at it. To put an end to this hassle, high-end illuminated universal remote controls are being made available.

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This remote control is capable of duplicating into one device, the other remote controls. Features like air conditioning, drapery, lighting, heating, and motorized projection screen, can all be manipulated from a single center.

Some of these remotes make it easy to access devices after programming on phones or personal computers. Aside from switching devices on and off, you can do as much as control the opening and closing of the drapes, and reduce and increase temperature. You can even make the lights dim from this single control center.

The most interesting feature of this remote is that it adapts to the control of devices that do not have programming codes by learning or mimicking the control of the device’s original remote.

Features of a good high-end universal remote control

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  • Has a backlit display(LCD screen)built into it?
  • It is easily customizable.
  • Controls both non-AV and AV infrared-controlled devices.
  • Controls RF remote-controlled devices.
  • Have illuminated buttons.
  • Possesses an Integrated charging stand.
  • Controls multiple electronic devices.
  • Provides the database for programming codes for the device.
  1. Soundproofing

The sound quality in the room and sound leakage are important considerations. This is because unfiltered noise can interrupt your fun and relaxation or you could just be disturbing others while you are having fun or relaxing. It’s either one or the other if you do not properly soundproof your media room.

To achieve this, you can make use of materials that dampen sounds or acoustic drywall capable of deadening sounds. 

Sound dampening materials include; drapes, sound panels, and carpets.

Acoustic drywall or zero-sound drywall is best if you’re constructing your new home with a media room in it or if you decide to go on a full remodeling process.

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Otherwise, in cases where you are repurposing an already existing room for this project, the use of drapes that block light and sound is ideal. Carpeting is also a great option since it has a high rating for deadening sounds.

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  1. Multi-functional Media Devices

Technology gets more advanced each year. Long gone are the days when homes were only stocked with traditional media and entertainment devices like DVDs, CDs, cables, Blu-Ray, and satellite.

In many homes today, entertainment sources from the internet are connected. This is necessary to keep up with the advances of this global village that the world has been. Examples of these sources include Netflix, HBO max, Apple TV, etc.

While creating your dream media room, an internet connection to devices is necessary to make your experience more enjoyable. You can install your service provider with a primary connection to the internet.

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  1. Comfortable furnishing

Your media room should not have the same furniture your living room has. If you’re trying to create or depict a cinematic environment, the choice of furniture matters a whole lot.

The seating arrangement in theaters or cinemas is in such a way that each person has an assigned seat. Your top choices of furniture should be recliners, couches, loveseats, and even theater seats if you want to go full into recreation. 

Remodeling Tips and Guidelines

Repurposing an existing room for this project is an option for anyone who desires to have a media room that wasn’t part of the blueprint. In a gradual and step-by-step manner, you can achieve this with a few tips and considerations;

  • Empty the room: after deciding the perfect spot for your media room construction, take everything out, down to the carpet.
  • Sealing: seal the doors of the room with plastic sheaths
  • Demolition: This is necessary, especially if you are doing a full remodel. Taking down the walls and ceiling creates access to proper wiring and other fixtures.
  • Cleaning: clean up all the wreckage and rubble, preferably with a vacuum cleaner.
  • Diagramming: this involves you drafting out the plans and location for wiring and other connections.
  • Installation: install wiring, light fixtures, mounting brackets, etc.
  • Flooring: tiered floors are one of the best options
  • Windows: Use light-blocking drapes to cover up windows
  • Closet: this is the perfect place to hide all the wiring, giving your media room a neat look.
  • Other equipment or accessories: things that could spice up the look and feel of your room; an example is a popcorn machine.

The Right Media Room Paint Colors

While you go about the right devices and technology to use in your media, do not leave out the color of paint to use. This is an important determinant of how much your media room looks like an actual one.

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A start towards using the right colors is by doing a proper finishing.

The right finishing requires you to limit your use of materials that are capable of the bouncing backlight as this can affect optimal viewing. Such materials include paint that is glossy or has a satin finish.

The right paint for your media room should have a matte or flat finish. This is because matte paints do not reflect light.

Avoid using brightly colored paint on the walls of your media room. 

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Paints with dark neutral colors are better for this use than lighter or fleshy tones. This is because light neutral colors, just like bright colors, can reflect light.

Gray paint or brown paints with mid-tones, and basic black colors are also amongst the best options.

Media Room Decorating Ideas

  • Frame your television: this automatically tucks your TV in, giving it a refined, neat, and streamlined look lapping it flat to the wall.
  • Use black paint: aside from the fact that this is one of the best options, using black paint is very decorative for a media room. It gives the room an absolute ‘theater feel’
  • Install a facade: this can be done perfectly with art. 
  • Posters: use of movie posters on the walls of your media room has a way of sending the message across. Simple and decorative.
  • Dim lights: Installation of dimming lights in your media is practical and decorative. It gives your media room the right look and adds to the beauty as well.
  • Introduce a touch of retro or vintage by using materials like abstract photographs, jukebox, etc
  • Pile up pillows in a section.

Best Paint Option for Projector

What paint do you use on your media room wall before mounting a projector?

Screen paints.

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Screen paints are specifically and specially formulated for this purpose. The best color options for a media room projector wall are bright colors.

While painting the walls of your media room in dark shades is ideal, the projector wall should be exempted. Projectors mounted work best on colored walls and different types of projectors require different shades and levels of contrast.

However, the right color of paint is determined by the color of your walls. For example, white paint is more suitable on gray walls.

Also, the energy emitted by the combination of certain colors serves as a determinant factor. For instance, using a projector on a black wall can emit a lot of heat.

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It is human to seek convenience and serenity almost all the time and the best way to make it all accessible is by creating or recreating preferred sources of comfort and relaxation right where you live and a media room is top on the list.

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