From Pool to Cool
When UK-based integrator FAB Audio Visual Ltd. was selected to convert a seldom-used residential indoor swimming pool room into a dedicated theater, one of the client's main requirements was that the sophisticated A/V system be simple for anyone to operate. To meet this need, FAB relied on control solutions from RTI.
RP-6 control processor
T3-V handheld controller
RM-443 RF receiver
In 2011, UK-based integrator FAB Audio Visual Ltd. was selected to convert a seldom-used indoor swimming pool room into a dedicated theater where the homeowner could relax and entertain friends. For the project, the client had two important requirements: that the space provide a stunning visual and acoustic experience, and that the sophisticated A/V system be simple for the homeowner and guests to operate.
To meet the first requirement, every detail of the space is designed to produce a truly cinematic experience. For soundproofing, the theater is isolated from the concrete floor using 10-mm isolation strips made from recycled car tires, while the walls and ceiling are covered with two layers of 15-mm plasterboard sandwiching a layer of Green Glue noiseproofing compound. Providing powerful 7.1 surround sound, Klipsch speakers and subwoofers are installed in the walls for a clean, uncluttered look. Audio is processed by an Onkyo PR-SC5077 processor, while an Onkyo MC-5500 9-channel power amp drives the speakers. Acoustic panels, finished in Black Velour, accent the walls and ceiling to tune the internal room acoustics.
A JVC projector housed within a ventilated compartment displays content from a variety of sources — including an Onkyo Blu-ray™ player, a Sky HD box, and an Xbox® game console — on a large 9.8-foot screen. The wall behind the screen is covered in acoustically transparent black cloth to improve the perceived picture contrast. Even the theater's mid-grey, thick-twist pile carpet was selected specifically to reduce coloration from reflected light. To complete the experience, the homeowner and guests enjoy movies and sports while reclining in black leather motorized seats from Frontrow.
To meet the need for simple, intuitive control over the system, FAB relied on solutions from RTI. The Onkyo components, JVC projector, sources, and lighting are controlled with RTI's RP-6 control processor and RM-433 RF receiver using IR and RS-232 control. The homeowner interacts with the system via the T3-V touchscreen controller. Using RTI's Integration Designer® programming software, FAB was able to easily customize the interface and utilize macro commands to create unique functionality. For example, as soon as a source is selected by the client, the projector and amplifier switch on. When "Play Movie" is pressed, the lights automatically dim. When "Stop" or "Pause" are pressed, a low-level lighting scene is selected to maintain the cinematic ambiance.
"The client has been very happy with the final product. They've been blown away by their theater's visual and audio quality, and love the simplicity of the control system," said Phillip Warris, of FAB Audio Visual Ltd. "We have been using RTI solutions since 2003, so we did not consider any other manufacturer for this project. In addition to their advanced functionality, the cost-effective products were integral in helping us come in on budget."
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