Best Media Room (under £10,000)
Winner: H&H Audio Visual Ltd for Highgate Media Room
This attic room is now a high-end technology haven
Located in the suburban streets of North London, one stylish property now features a multi-functional media room thanks to city-based installer and consultant, H&H Audio Visual Ltd. This attic room is now a high-end technology haven, which can transform from a simple office space to a sophisticated lounge, home cinema and gaming room - an impressive conversion which landed this project the accolade of Best Media Room under £10,000 in the CEDIA Awards 2015.
For this four storey Victorian townhouse, H&H Audio Visual’s brief was based on a tight budget. The client’s main requirement was to be able to walk into the space, and at the touch of a button, turn the existing office into a 5.1 cinema set up. The room also had to provide a gaming solution for the children's entertainment, and function as an everyday home office. All the while, H&H Audio Visual was to work towards the client's aesthetic ambitions for clean lines and a luxurious finish. Space for presentation drawers and cabinets to hold a precious coin collection was also to be accounted throughout the design stages.
The first step of this project, planning and assigning the budget, unveiled a number of challenges, which H&H Audio Visual had to expertly resolve before any practical work was to start on this project. While the budget was tight, the install still had to tick all the boxes in terms of features and integration, and top quality equipment.
Having the correct planning in place, and a great understanding of media room set ups, H&H Audio Visual was able to shave time and money from the overall programming and installation cost.
Due to the unusual shape of the loft room, another challenge came at the design phase. Desire for a 5.1 cinema set up was conflicted by a vaulted ceiling and existing chimney stack. The installer had to calculate the best orientation for the speakers within this obstructive shape. This was eventually compensated for by selecting an AV receiver with comprehensive acoustic adjustment features, including Audyssey and Dynamic EQ.
By working closely with an interior designer to specify and design the joinery, H&H Audio Visual was able to allow for a millimetre perfect finish and for the system to be woven into the joinery aesthetically. The overall design is sympathetic to rest of the house and is in keeping with the architecture of the building.
To achieve the “one click” transition of office space to a media room, H&H Audio Visual programmed full automation and integration capabilities to come together with the Savant control system, automatically switching between the television, Rako lighting and the projection system at the press of a button on a smartphone or tablet.
Rako lighting design was selected to complement the presentation cases for the homeowner’s coin collection, along with the remaining joinery in the room. Different lighting fixtures and fittings were used for each part of the loft space, so the Rako design was varied and needed to be precise. A particular highlight of the Rako lighting and Savant control system working together is the automated dimming of LED lights within the custom joinery each time the screen option is selected. This makes sure that the projection screen is never back lit with superfluous lighting.
“We feel that this particular project not only delivered on the client's original brief, but also surpassed their expectations within a strict budget,” says Sean Hardiman, Managing Director of H&H Audio Visual Ltd. “The addition of a Savant control system to handle the automation coupled with Rako lighting control added the element of technical finesse to the luxurious finish delivered by the interior designer.”