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#145063 - 08/09/06 10:04 AM Equipment Niche or Closet
dennisdxl32 Offline

Registered: 07/27/06
Posts: 46
Loc: Dallas, TX
Well, after my bit of *ahem* irreverence last night, I thought I'd get back to serious business (yeah right).

Anyways, because of the way the house will be laid out, there's a 2' x 2' x 10' alcove in the back of the media room where I plan to place my equipment on an equipment rack. I'm already planning to run speaker wires in the wall to it, as well as a conduit to the ceiling mounted projector and another conduit to the front of the riser. For a couple of hundred dollars, the builder can frame and put a door to turn the niche into a closet. I'm interested in opinions on whether it's worth it.

The big appeal of the closet is aesthetics. While I don't mind displaying the electronics on a nice rack, it's the wiring that could look unkempt (especially with the conduit in the ceiling). The closet might help with noise from the electronics, though the reviews I've read seem to imply that the fans on most receivers and amps are relatively quiet and only run when the unit is working particularly hard (in that case, the loud sound from the speakers will probably drown out the fan noise anyways). I would also put an AC vent (additional expense) in the closet to help with the heat from the electronics. WAF is not much of an issue: I let her have her way with the kitchen, so I get to have mine with the media room.

The appeal of having the niche is that it's easier to work with. Though the niche is 24" wide, the width of the door frame for the closet is only about 22", which is a little narrower than most of the racks I've seen on or I didn't want to invest in an industrial-looking rack system (like Middle Atlantic) b/c it's not aesthetically appealing to me and rather pricey. With the 24" wide niche, I'd have more choices in terms of racks with casters and get my own rolling rack. I'd also be less worried about ventilation with the niche, pay less money, and could show off my gear.

Anyways, I just wanted to hear opinions/recommendations. Do people who have their electronics in a niche or out in the media room wish it was hidden away in a closet? Do those who have their gear in a closet wish they had more direct access to their gear?

#145064 - 08/09/06 10:28 AM Re: Equipment Niche or Closet [Re: dennisdxl32]
F107plus5 Offline

Registered: 01/24/05
Posts: 2034
Loc: Fla. Orig. Mich.
In our old house when I was just developing our system, all the electronics was in a open-faced cabinet under the TV.

Major hassle everytime I needed access to the wiring!!

In our current house, while setting up a new system and adding a RPCRT which pushed the equipment racks(now installed to the side of the TV)out into the room, I found being able to get behind the electronics during set-up to be the answer to any number of prayers.

Of course, now that the system is relatively mature and complete, I don't need access all that often.

But it sure is easier when I do!!

#145065 - 08/09/06 11:05 AM Re: Equipment Niche or Closet [Re: dennisdxl32]
chesseroo Offline

Registered: 05/13/02
Posts: 5171
Loc: western canada

For a couple of hundred dollars, the builder can frame and put a door to turn the niche into a closet.

I think you need a cheaper builder.
You can get all sorts of door types at places like Home Depot but if smaller closet doors won't fit, a frame and custom door is very easy to DIY. Now if you are going with something like glass on the front to work remotes through it, that's a bit different. We have two 22" french doors with glass at the opening of our media room so i know you can get doors that small, non custom.


The closet might help with noise from the electronics

The loudest component i have right now is my dvdp. I can hear it whirring away. This is one small reason i may consider buying a more expensive dvdp, to get a more quiet transport.


Do people who have their electronics in a niche or out in the media room wish it was hidden away in a closet? Do those who have their gear in a closet wish they had more direct access to their gear?

I prefer to show the equipment but yes, a clean look is necessary (nice rack, organized cables). It just takes some patience and time in bundling all the cables together with ties, ropes, elastic bands, gum and sticking them into conduits or cable runs on the back of the racking, but the end result is worth it. I've seen some closet style equipment before but rarely completely enclosed. Heat can be an issue (and hence installing HVAC specifically for that small area a pain) but constant access to the dvdp or any other component is a second reason to leave them 'open'.
That's my four cents.
"Those who preach the myths of audio are ignorant of truth."

#145066 - 08/09/06 11:57 AM Re: Equipment Niche or Closet [Re: dennisdxl32]
real80sman Offline

Registered: 05/16/02
Posts: 1174
Loc: Ontario, Canada
At our last house, I built an open face cabinet under the staircase. The equipment faced into the room, and all the cables ran in-wall to the back, under the stairs. The beauty was that I could just open the door and walk right in behind all the equipment. I had full access, full lighting, and everything was at eye level. (Granted, I am a short little sh&$ ) It made great use of an otherwise useless area.

Epic 80/600 + M3's + M3 Algonquins + M2 Computer + EP125
I think I'm developing an addiction.

#145067 - 08/09/06 05:23 PM Re: Equipment Niche or Closet [Re: dennisdxl32]
Ajax Offline

Registered: 12/30/03
Posts: 6331
Loc: Cleveland, Ohio
Hey Mark (S. Johnson)! Where are your pics? :

Never-mind! I found 'em

For more see The Mother of All Posts, Part I

"People generally quarrel because they cannot argue." - G. K. Chesterton

#145068 - 08/09/06 06:38 PM Re: Equipment Niche or Closet [Re: Ajax]
dllewel Offline

Registered: 06/20/05
Posts: 1189
Loc: Utah, USA
I framed an opening into the HT wall adjacent to my storage room. It was cheaper just to put a cabinet with shelves in the wall, and I can easily walk into the storage room and get to the back of the gear. I like having it visual off to the side so I can see it, but it is not right in front of the room, distracting from the movie. I also have a TiVo and my reciever has fans in it so the glass door on the front was essential in my case.


M80s VP150 QS8s EP500s


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