Make Your Basement a Home Theatre! - Econo Basement - Basement and Garage Services Calgary

Make Your Basement a Home Theatre!

That empty, unfinished basement is calling you, but what should it become? How about a home theatre! You can build an impressive media room for less money than you may think and your unfinished basement is an ideal location. The concrete floor and walls are a natural advantage as they reduce sound vibration improving the movie experience for you and your neighbors! Most basements boast a large, rectangular space perfect for a screen and seating. So get started! Plan a customized home theater for you, your family and friends.

Flat screen or video projector: Your first decision is whether to use your existing TV, purchase a larger flat screen television or invest in a video projector. All are viable options. Ceiling mounted projectors are now more affordable and supply a great image. If you choose this option, you will need a dedicated screen. 

Screen size and location: The bigger the screen/TV the more space is needed between it and the seating. The general rule is 10 to 15 feet from a 50 to 60 inch monitor. Make sure your screen is not facing a large window as natural sunlight will affect the viewing experience. Situate it so that it is possible to use other basement amenities (dart board, pool table, bar) while watching a movie. 

Lighting: Consider blackout shades for the windows. Install a dimmer switch so you can adjust lights to your liking. Keep the colour pallet of your basement simple to avoid visual distraction. Choose dark colours, recessed ceiling lights and side wall sconces for that authentic feel. 

Wiring:  A home theatre can draw a lot of current so consider 10 or 12 gauge wire and a separate electrical circuit. If your basement is unfinished, you can pre-wire your equipment hiding the wires in the wall. If you are retrofitting your theatre, hide the wires in low-profile, PVC tubing.

WiFi: If you can’t get WiFi signals directly from your router, use a signal booster to extend the signal to your basement or install a “wired” internet connection.

Soundproofing: If your basement is unfinished, start with R11 insulation in the walls and apply 1/8” foam tape to the wall studs and ceiling joists. Consider finishing with a sound-dampening drywall. If this specialty gypsum is not in your budget or you already have regular drywall, add sound dampening materials to the walls such as high-density vinyl, lightweight acoustic boards, or thin carpeting. Soundproofing curtains are also helpful. For the ceiling, consider a second layer of insulation, use acoustic tiles or install fiberglass ceiling panels. For the floor, use a plush carpet.

Speakers: You don’t need the most expensive sound system in your home theatre. The modest space and the acoustic materials you install lend themselves toward a small system that won’t overpower the room. If possible, prewire for your surround sound speakers. If your room is already finished, consider a wireless system. Rear speakers are a must! For a professional look, install a set of black acoustic panels that hide the left, right and center speakers.

Take care of moisture: Dampness can seriously damage electronics. If your basement is unfinished, take precautions against moisture when completing it. If your basement is already renovated and dampness is still a concern, a dehumidifier is an inexpensive and effective solution.

Seating: There are so many options when it comes to theatre seating! You can go elaborate and purchase leather cinema chairs that recline. Try simple theatre style seating or use comfy sofas and loveseats. For an authentic feel, build a wooden platform to elevate your second row of seating. 

There are so many options when it comes to theatre seating! You can go elaborate and purchase leather cinema chairs that recline. Try simple theatre style seating or use comfy sofas and loveseats. For an authentic feel, build a wooden platform to elevate your second row of seating. 

An elegant basement improvement, a theatre will provide entertainment and increase your home’s resale price. A home theatre allows a true movie experience without leaving your house!When you are ready to create the home theatre of your dreams, call the Calgary basement experts, Econo Basements at (403) 768-0256 or email at

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