Introduction: TV Wall With Hidden Tech
We have all been there... Lovely wall - ideal for the TV, but what do you do with ALL the wires and the kit that goes with the TV?
Ideally I would have simply inserted the wires in the walls and put all the kit in the AV Cabinet at the base...
But I had too much stuff that I wanted to include in the area around the TV... that and the fact that the wall the TV is on is solid blockwork - a very messy job to put the wires in and dosnt allow for changes and additions.
So... A fake wall was the next best thing.
All in materials cost about £25....
All you need is an 8x4 sheet of MDF (I think I used 12mm)
and a couple of lengths of planed square edge timber.
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Step 1: Plan and Measure Up...
Plan What Will Go Where...Work out what you want to hide behind the tv wall.
In this wall I have installed 2 routers, a NAS, a media laptop and a Nintendo Wii
I worked out the dimensions of each and planned what needed to go where.
The Wii needed easy access to put discs in. The laptop wont be using its drive - but does have a USB extension into the AV cabinet for thumb drives etc.
Measure the thickness of what you are installing, then add a bit for clearance and to allow an air gap to aid cooling.
This is then used to determin the thickness of the timber used to space the wall panel out from the original wall.
Don't leave anything too tight. Make the gaps bigger than you need and allow room for more cables too, it's not easy trying to route them if they are too tight or if you need to change this about in the future.
I decided to use the solid wall to secure the TV bracket.
this will give a sizable whole to pass cables through to the TV and also allow some access to the electrical installed in the wall.
Draw it up on the wall and prep and surfaces to give a nice fit against the existing wall.
I left the old wall paper behind the new panel... as I was in a rush.
One other pointer - I steped the battons back approx 20mm from the edge of the MDF sheet, this meant that I wanst trying to get a brillient edge etc and any inconsistancies or descrepencies would be lost in the shadow gap that was created.
Step 2: Cut and Fix the Woodwork..
After you have worked out whats going where - its time to get the wood an the wall.
I've put small vertical ends on the horizontal sections to avoid looking at the end grain of the battons.
I also planned how to fix the panel to the battons so that no screws would be seen.
This was done in the area hidden behind the TV and the AV cabinet below.
Step 3: Prep the Panel...
Cut any access holes needed and rub down to give a good surface to paint.
I decided to remove the back from the AV cabinet, and cut out a good sized access hole in the bottom of the panel to allow for easy cable access etc.
Put the panel up for a test run before fixing to the battons.
Step 4: Put It All Back Together...
Remember where you placed your partitions and start threading cables...
I've got 'external' connections to the phone line, Satillite feeds and returns for the AV distribution box in the loft, all of these are in the lower left of the room.
All the cables come out of the panel in the bottom left corner and also runs to the Surround sub / controller in the corner.
Make sure you can fit what you need to out of the hole you've made.
The surround speakers still have visable wires in these pictures, I still havent got around to doing anything with them....
NOTE: If you are installing a laptop behind here - it is a right pain to have to take it all out to turn it on. Make sure you can set up for either Wake-on-Lan or Wake-on-USB. I use a wireless keyboard and mouse - and the wake on USB works well when the laptop is set to sleep.
Step 5: And Finish...
After the initial install, take the TV etc down and cover everything else.
And you are ready to paint....
Either match the wall behind it - or make a feature out of it.