Complain To a Neighbor, Get a Custom Built Dolby Atmos Home Theater

A Denver homeowner received an outrageous quote for a home theater and mentioned it to his neighbor, who happened to be a professional integrator. The resulting installation is a custom built, Core Brands equipped Dolby Atmos home theater in a 15,000-square-foot home.

Alice Gustafson

“The client happened to be my next door neighbor,” Larry Page of Page Digital tells CE Pro sister publication CE Pro Europe. “He had received a bid for a home theater in his basement from a larger local AV company and had no idea what I did for a living. He was concerned about the picture quality and they couldn’t really offer a demo projector for him to see before committing to the project, which they quoted as $250,000.”

“He was talking with another neighbor and expressed he’d rather have a big plasma screen because he loved the picture he got from his family room plasma,” Page continues. “That neighbor said he thought I knew a lot about TVs and that he should talk with me.”

Page went next door and looked at the proposal with his neighbor and saw that they had quoted $30,000 for a 1080p projector, “which was ridiculous,” he says.

“He told me he didn’t care if I was more expensive; he felt I explained things to him in a way that made sense.”

— Larry Page, Page Digital

“I explained if he’s spending that much money he should be getting a 4K projector and that they were just trying to clear out old inventory. They had quoted over $100,000 in speakers and I asked if he was an ‘audiophile’ because that’s way too much money in speakers if he’s not. He’s in his late 60s and as I guessed, that wasn’t a priority to him. I then asked why they only had $15,000 in seating as that’s a very important part of a theater – if your seats aren’t comfortable you’re not going to enjoy the experience.”

After getting advice from Page, the client immediately asked his assistant to cancel the contract. “He told me he didn’t care if I was more expensive; he felt I explained things to him in a way that made sense. He wanted the best and if that meant spending $300,000 instead of $250,000, that was fine with him.”

With the help of Core Brands sales representative Brian Reiter, Page set about designing, building and installing an easy to manage Dolby Atmos home theater, complete with three Sunfire CRW3 in-wall speakers, four Sunfire CRW2 in-wall speakers, four Sunfire HRS1 subwoofers and a Sunfire TGA-7401 amplifier.

“In addition to the powerful audio produced by Sunfire, this home theater is fully equipped with ELAN-controlled lighting, projection and seating,” Page adds. “It defines comfort and convenience, while simultaneously delivering high resolution visuals and crisp, 360-degree audio.

“Reiter and I designed a system that would truly encase the viewer in what they were hearing,” he continues. “In addition to seven Sunfire in-wall speakers and Sunfire HRS1 subwoofers, I incorporated four SpeakerCraft AIM 285 Atmos in-ceiling speakers to propel sound downwards. The configuration successfully envelops the audience in immersive audio, emulating the audio experience of being in a movie theater.”


Take the Tour: This Majestic House Deserved a Home Theater

Page then installed an automated Stewart 156” MicroPerf screen paired with a 4K Sony projector, designing the system so that the projector electronically adjusts the frame of the projected content – normally projected in a 2.35:1 presentation – to match that of the screen.

“In order to customize film content to adjust to the screen without the typical ‘black bars’ you’d see above and below the content, I installed a mechanism that electronically adjusts so the projection fills the screen,” he explains.

To deliver the comfort required, Page installed 11 electric recliner seats, configured in two rows, which can be repositioned at the touch of a button on the homeowner’s Apple iPad that is integrated with an ELAN controller. 

The home theater​'s Lutron lighting, audio, seating and projection system are all integrated with the home’s central ELAN gSC10 SystemController. With several ELAN touch panels on the walls and multiple Apple iPads equipped with the ELAN g! Mobile App, the homeowner can control the theater from anywhere. 

The homeowner was so impressed with Sunfire’s audio quality that he had Page outfit his all-new game room and family room with Sunfire CRW2 in-wall speakers, Sunfire CRWS3 Speakers and a Sunfire HRS10 Subwoofer.

The client is already enjoying his new system, having recently hosted a birthday party for one of his children in the home theater.

“This is the perfect space for parties or a simple night in for the family. It’s exactly what I wanted it to be,” he says. “There’s fun for the entire family, all thanks to the integrated technology that makes the experience possible. The difference in the audio before and after the renovation is spectacular. The combination of high quality speakers and carefully construed design configuration truly make it sound like we’re in a movie theater.”

This article was originally published on CE Pro Europe.