It is possible to do this but the research for your room has to be there. Way before I started to build the room I was looking on the internet for a couple of years. I also subscribed to Electronic House and Home Theatre Magazines. Audiophile is another good magazine but I really wanted pictures of Theatre Rooms. Don't pay attention to the $20,000 dollar speakers, projectors, and so on. Keep your eye on just the ideas and don't get discouraged with the cost that you see in the magazines. You DONT need that stuff to make a great Theatre Room. Also, If you have some electronics now then slowly build your electronics as you go and only get what you need first then work on the other electronics down the road. I was using KLH speakers that I have had since 1995. then finally upgraded the center speaker for a $120 to a Yamaha and also a Yamaha 10" Subwoofer for $100. I am slowly working on upgrading. (UPDATE..03-01-12. I now have my Yamaha in wall Speakers. They rock!)The best thing is that It all sounds great and will blow your socks of when you hear it. If you own a house you know that there is always something your working on, but you live there and enjoy it while your doing it. That is the same way with a Home Theatre room. I also built a 8' concave star ceiling and designed the light box including a five foot shooting star, twinkling milkway with the constellations. The stars are all aligned in order to an October night sky for my birthday and they face the correct direction compared to the North Pole. If anyone is interested I am selling the light box plans/parts list for the light boxes and or I can build one for you and do it cheaper than you can order off of the internet. I am working on a more compact design than the one that I have in my theatre room. They are home made but very durable. No problems for 2 years now. The box will have the ability for multiple shooting stars, the milkyway, and constellations, You can individually dim the stars on the milkyway and constellations. Let me know if interested.
My instructable isn't the best but it is designed mostly to give you a nice overview of what you will have to think about and hopefully it will shed some light on the ideas.
Step 1: Making the Star Ceiling!
FIRST___ take all of your 1x12' pine and cut your arches as shown in the drawing that is shown. You will cut 2 of the 8' boards and make 4 pieces out of them. Eventually your frame will some what resemble a "pie" shaped circle. Only 2 of the 8' pine boards will NOT be cut. Notice the "Notches" in those boards on the drawing. You will then glue the two 8' boards together to make a "+" pattern. CAUTION as those boards will be VERY flimsy and snap due to the center section being very thin. You will also need some 2-4 brackets and screw them in to add strength to the center.
SECOND_ Now add the MDF board around the outside and form a circle around your 8' pine"+" figure. To do this your will take the 4'x8' sheet and cut four 12"x 8' mdf strips with a skill saw. Remember this will be very flimsy. You will then start by taking a 12"x8' mdf strip and forming it around the 8' pine arch frame. Let the mdf bend naturally around the pine frame and help it by forming a circle around the edge. This is tricky at first but go slow and dont rush. Take your time to get it right so you dont have an oblong circle. you will screw you outside mdf to the frame and then add another mdf till you have went around the frame atleast 2 times. You may need another sheet of MDF if your frame is still flimsy. screw and glue all of the pine frame to the MFD.
THIRD____Now take your other 2 pine boards that have been arched and cut them as shown to make 4 identical shorter pieces. I cut mine (I think) around 2-3 feet. The reason why I didnt just cut them in half is because you dont want 8 pieces of 1" pine coming together at the center of the star ceiling. This would make it very tough to poke hundreds of fiber optic cable through when you have a pine frame behind it. You want some space at the center.. The thicker the wood and the closer the wood is to each other will be very hard to put hundreds of holes there for stars. Make sure you reinforce every joint with a tube of construction adhesive and also used "L" brackets on most the corners. DON'T used construction adhesive on the drywall/ wood connections. This will make it very hard to push through with the fiber optic cables.
FOURTH__ Now that you have accomplished the EASY part. Are you ready for the hard part??? You will now Take two 4'x8' 1/4 " bendable dry wall and form the concave part of the star ceiling. You will make 4 triangular pieces. Each triangle will cover a 1/4 of the the star ceiling and will fit on the 8' pine "+" frame. 2 convex triangles will be cut out on each sheat. Convex ( If you don't know) is the opposite of concave. If you think of a triangle, it has 3 straight lines with 3 points but a convex triangle has 3 lines curved slighlty outward to 3 points. You need to do this because you are creating a curved surface in a circle. There is quite the geometry going on here with this design. You may be overwhelmed at this point but it CAN be done. What will help you get the perfect cut on the drywall the first time is to make a card board template first. You need something that you can curve and mold first before actually cutting the drywall. Make the template and form it on a 8' pine frame. Curve it around the best you can. do this for all four pieces. You really have to be creative here. You have to fit 4 pieces of drywall on a frame, bend the drywall and fit it on a 1" wide pine board. This is very little room for error. If you dont have a perfect fit, dont worry to much. That is what drywall glue and drywall mud is for. You will fix your imperfections later BUT you do have to make you star cieling sturdy so try to be as accurated as possible. Now, To bend the drywall you will need to get a spray bottle with water and spray the 1/4 piece drywall as you press it down on the frame. slowly press and hold it down WITHOUT putting your hand through it. This is a very fragile process but IT CAN BE DONE. patience is the key. Keep the drywall wet but dont soak the drywall. When the drywall starts to settle on the frame then it will need to dry. You wont be able to glue it and screw it until it dries. Dont forget when you mud the drywall to tape it with drywall tape. When you mud your drywall keep in mind that the thicker the mud you put on the tougher it will be poke holes in you drywall for the fiber optic cable
FIFTH____ Now that you have your frame set up and you have mudded, taped, and sanded (DON'T paint it yet) then you can now start to design the star field. You are now going to have some really sore fingers and thumbs. Get used to it. I pushed over 700 pins through 1/4" drywall AND wood pine. It wasn't fun. You may spends hours on this. It is a slow process. You will need an art light projector to project the image on to the ceiling. (I bought one at HobbyLobby for $30. Wait for the 40% off coupon on 1 item. It will save you) Tilt the ceiling up on its end to project the star image. Because the ceiling is so large you may need to project half of the image on one side then the other half of the star field on the second half of the star ceiling. You will have to realign the image and this can be tricky. I have a very detailed star image. PLEASE, Don't waste your time with making up some random stars. I have seen those and to me they aren't realistic.. You will need to buy atleast 3 different color push pins. 1 for the constelations, 1 color for the Milky Way, 1 color for the Shooting Stars. This way, you will know which holes to expose when you insert the fiber optic cable from the back of the star ceiling. You will order 3 different sizes of fiber optic cable. .25mm, .50mm, .75mm. This is the secret to really getting the 3D effect. The other secret is that you need to individually dim the Milky Way and the Costellations. This will give you another 3D effect. My design on my Light box will do all of this. The Milky way uses the .25mm only. The Shooting star uses all 3 starting with the .75mm for the 1st 1.5', then .50mm for the next 1', then .25mm the rest of the run. Each fiber gets a little closer to each other as the shooting star fires across to give the appearance of the shooting star slowing down as it goes through the atmosphere. Since the fiber gets smaller then it also gets dimmer and appears to burn out. The constellations are .75mm fiber cables. When you insert the cable, leave atleast 2" exposed.
SIXTH____It is very easy to pull out the fiber optic cables. Be very careful not to do this or you may waste an hours worth of work. I used ACID FREE tape to hold some of the cables. The cables with need to be glued in with Epoxy glue. DONT use certain glues like superglue. It dissolves the cable. You will then prime and paint the ceiling, then clip the fibers later. DONT clip the fibers all the way to the drywall. This can create a halo effect and if you leave them longer (atleast 1/2") I think it helps with the 3D effect. I just used a really good pair of scissors. Don't buy those expensive tools used to clip the fibers. Mine looks great with out that and the stars are very bright.
SEVENTH___.When you line your shooting star on the ceiling, you will need to keep the EXACT ORDER of every cable IN ORDER other wise it will skip or be out of sequence when you attach the other end to the light box. It doesn't matter what order the Milkyway fibers or the Constellation fiber optics are in the light box, but it does matter for the shooting star fiber optics.
Step 2: The Framing of the Theatre Room
When you frame in the room you will want to make sure that every stud is tight and that there is nothing loose. The bass will vibrate everything. Also make sure your air duct are atleast taped around the seems before enclosing your room. There are special sound proofing material that you can buy meant for reducing vibration but I didn't used them. I did however fill every inch behind my walls with openfaced insulations. Behind my 2x4" walls I used 9" thick insulation. Not 4" insulation. If you don't know anything about framing then go to the hardware store and buy a framing book. YOU DONT HAVE TO BE A CARPENTER to do this but you do need to do it right and know the basics. You need to know about framing around windows (like mine) and corners, doorways, Attaching your walls to concrete, etc... Keep in mind that if your drywall every thing including the ceiling then you may want to have an access hole to get to things in the ceiling. Also water proof your basement walls before doing anything and then cover them in palstic all the way to the floor for vapor barrier. Used SOLID wood doors for sound protection. NOT the cheap hollow wood doors. My french doors are solid. Do all of the things now that you can't do later. Don't worry about spending money on the things that can be done later. One more thing, Keep ALL of your 120v ac wiring atleast 1' away from ALL of your speaker wire. If you do have to cross them then cross the wires at a 90 deg angle. Dont run them side by side. It can cause interferince in your speakers.
Step 3: Designing the Electronic Equipment Rack
When you are thinking about your equipment rack. You want it to look very professional and very organized in the front as well as the back. My equipment rack is absolutely all hand made by me. This is not a professional rack even though it looks like one. The front covers are all cut plexiglass and painted a Satin Black. Dont use gloss. You dont want reflection by your screen. I used a Dremmel to router out around the Xbox. Believe me it wasn't easy and the plexiglass is very brittle. Behind the plexiglass is your standard wire racks that you use in your closet. I was worried about vibration noise but it works great. They are also great for air ventilation. I made my own removable and adjustable wood brackets that the wire racks sit on. I can re-adjust each shelf by 1" intervals. This picture doesn't show it but all of the open spaces are now solid and enclosed with black plexiglass. The rack probably cost me $60-$80. Not the $600-$800 that you will spend. When You build your rack, keep in mind that you will want it large enough to upgrade more electronics in the future. Design it to have a couple of extra empty slots. Some professionals prefer that the rack not be by the projection screen. It creates light and also distracts from watching the movie. I had given it a lot of thought and decided that it would look good. It doesnt bother me at all.
Step 4: Adding a Projector Box
Step 5: Designing Second Row Step Seating
Step 6: Upgrading to in Wall Speakers (Custom Boxes)
When you make the custom speaker frame boxes, start by making the front frame for the speaker first. Make a cardboard template first of the front face plate (NOT your speaker), then you will be able to play with and find all of the angles that you will will want for your custom frame.
You will need to attach the cardboard template to the wall. Make sure that it is secure in the position that you want it in. When it is secure then you can make your outside frames around the front face plate. You should make a heavy guage paper template and force the paper into the position that you want it in while holding that edge of the heavy paper against the corner of your cardboard front face template. Dont worry about exact corners right now. You will figure that out after you get a generic form from your heavy gauge paper template. After you cut it out, then trace your heavy guage template on a new cardboard template. This will be more exact and will allow you to have a better and harder template for tracing on your wood. You will form fit and refit several times before getting it right. Dont cut to much paper off at a time. You can always cut your template down but can never add. If you do make a mistake you can always fix it with masking tape then re-cut it later. Tape all of your template together in one piece then fit it against the wall to make sure everything fits. After you have made your cardboard template then trace and cut you mdf wood frames. All of my angles were very tricky because of multiple compound miter cuts and triangles. After you make your cuts, all of your mistakes can be filled and sanded with a wood putty. That is how I fixed mine.
I also made a template for the back of my speaker. Not all of my speaker went through the drywall and I wanted to make the smallest holes possible in my wall. You can see in my picture that is what I did with the multiple holes.
I attached my frames with screws and different bolts and nuts and wall anchors. You can see in one picture that I counter sunk some screw holes in the front face plate. They need to be counter sunk so as not to interfere with the speaker laying flat against the frame. I also used a Dremmel for this.
Step 7: Adding the Finishing Touches
My Equipment Consists of:
Pioneer VSX-1120 receiver
Epson 6500UB projector
LG Bluray player
Kenwood 100 Disc CD Changer
Pyle Audio PT 1100 Amp
Clark Synthesis TST329 Gold Tactile Transducer
Elite 16:9 Screen
Yamaha NS-IW 960 Center speaker
Yamaha NS-IW 650 Front and Rear speakers
Yamaha YST-SW216BL Subwoofer