Best Media Room (over £15,000)
Winner: Philharmonic Audio Visual for Wimbledon Media Room
The whole system functions beautifully for both relaxation and entertaining
Philharmonic Audio Visual's project Wimbledon Media Room secured the top prize in the Best Media Room over £15,000 category of the 2014 CEDIA Awards, for a project which transformed a living room into a multi-functional space, packed with cutting edge, yet discreetly hidden, audio-visual technology which met the customer’s expectations superbly.
The homeowners wanted their Victorian home to be brought into the 21st century and invited Philharmonic to change former dining area into a modern media room, where they could enjoy TV and films, as well as entertain friends and family. A key challenge for Philharmonic was the seamless integration of the technology to deliver on this experience without compromising on the interior design scheme of the living space.
With performance and concealment the twin drivers for the project, Philharmonic chose Artcoustic 120-36 SL speakers to provide impeccable left and right channel audio as part of a 5.1 system as well as great aesthetics for the project. Philharmonic created an elevation drawing of the proposed system, allowing the room’s interior designer and client to visualise how the final installation might look and overcome any fears that the technology would be at all intrusive. The company also sourced the paint for the designer that is used by Artcoustic so that the wall colour could be exactly matched to the speaker cabinetry. This successfully reduced the visual impact of the speakers without sacrificing the audio quality, satisfying all parties. The full sound experience was completed using an Artcoustic bespoke C-2 SL centre speaker, two Modular SL speakers and a Panel Sub SL Duo.
The audio system is driven with an Arcam AVR600 receiver. The unit’s two-stage amplifier circuitry was the perfect partner providing great sonic detail and clarity for the Artcoustic speakers. The AVR was fitted within a cabinet supplied by the interior designer, creating low visual impact. Meanwhile, the speaker grilles and subwoofer were colour matched to the TV, reducing their impact on the design of the room.
When not in use for parties or musical enjoyment, the space is the perfect place to kick back and enjoy a great movie for the family. An 8000 series 65” Samsung screen, renowned for its great looks and picture quality, is the focal point for the space.
In locating and mounting the screen on less than perfectly flat period property walls, Philharmonic overcame a further challenge. The company spent considerable time in positioning the screen for optimum viewing and to ensure the slim crisp lines of the bezel perfectly matched the sharp edges of the Artcoustic speakers. Philharmonic prides itself on attention to detail and with millimetre-perfect installation the top of the screen was precisely aligned with the speakers.
Finally, a Control4 SR250 remote control partnered with an HC 250 room controller is used to afford simple control of the AV technology in the space. This allowed the source equipment to be hidden inside B&B Italia furniture, whilst at the same time giving the client complete control over all aspects of the system, including their Sky box, Panasonic Blu-ray player and Sonos Connect.
“We are delighted with the system that Philharmonic has provided for our media room,” says the happy customer. “It truly satisfies our requirements for the space. The whole system functions beautifully for both relaxation and entertaining, whether with music or film and TV, and being able to use a single remote to control all the elements in the room is wonderfully simple. We found the design process to be easy and informative – the team were able to accommodate all of our requests, from both a technical and design perspective, so that we could achieve the look we desired in the room. In particular, the equipment is surprisingly unobtrusive, which really was essential for us.”
It’s an impressive and beautifully designed conducted with understanding, calm authority and skill from start to finish by Philharmonic AV.