This is one of those projects you don’t even think too much about, I was looking for some kind of shelf to set my Receiver & DVD player. I came across at many different floating shelves online, but, they were either too small or way too expensive. On top of it, I wasn’t sure they were sturdy enough to support the receiver without settling or even worse, falling down at some point.
As a result, I decided to build my own floating shelf and complete a DIY home theater installation.
To tell you the truth, I don’t even watch TV, I do enjoy watching movies from time to time, but I rarely, almost never I should say, sit down to watch a TV program. Not even on the computer, because I know that nowadays you can watch pretty much anything online.
However, I’ve always enjoyed having a nice stereo system. I use it all the time, while I work on projects, write this blog, clean the house, cook dinner, have friends over for food and drinks and more.
BUILDING A DIY FLOATING SHELF FOR THE DVD PLAYER, RECEIVER
Since I had already made my mind about the floating shelf, the first step on this project was to find something big and strong enough to support the home theater equipment. At first, I thought of glass, however, I decided against it, because it was going to be more difficult to find strong, long enough brackets, more difficult to hide all the cables and as far as I remember, it was also a bit more expensive. I went the wood route.
This is a 48” x 16” x 2” board, I don’t remember the exact type, but I’ll try to find it out. To build the shelf, I drilled two 1 ¾ inch holes on each side of the board (to run cables), rounded the edges and also sanded it a bit, although, not as much as I should have as you can probably see on some of the pictures.
To support and fix it to the wall, I used three of the same wood support brackets I’ve used before.
Once I had everything figured out and measured, it was time to start having fun! I started by positioning the three support brackets, I’m not exactly sure why I did this first, but it did help position everything else, as it gave me an idea of where the shelf was going to be.
THE DIY HOME THEATER INSTALLATION
With the brackets in place, I then proceeded to cut the first two holes on the wall, one of them for the posts wall plate and one for the recessed cable plate so I could run wires from the receiver to the TV. These can be seen just to the right of the leftmost bracket.
Right after, I cut five more holes on the wall, two to run the cables for the front speakers, one for the center speaker, one so that I could add an extra wall outlet behind the TV and last but not least, one to add an extra recessed plate behind the TV. I ran all the speaker wires through the crawlspace, another one of those things that are easier said than done, and installed blank wall plates to the holes.
Having pretty much everything in place, it was a matter of installing the wall outlet, mounting the TV and the speakers.
As you can see in the last picture, when I first installed them, the speakers were at an angle. This was because I used the speaker’s wall mount bolt and the D-ring hangers. I had figured I could just hang them like a photo frame, however, due to the weight and position of the speaker’s wall mount bolt, it was not possible to keep them straight. This was easily fixed by adding some support in between the speakers and the wall. To do this, I used some plastic bumpers, similar to these.
With the TV and speakers properly installed and leveled, the next step was finishing the floating shelf, and hooking everything up. To finish the shelf, I used the same stain I had left over from my kitchen and laundry room cabinet projects, I first put one coat and let it dry overnight, then the next day I put an extra one for a better finish.
INSTALLING THE SURROUND SOUND SPEAKERS
Wait a minute, you may be wondering, a home theater system without surround sound speakers? Well, this is where things got interesting!
Due to limited space and the fact that I didn’t want speakers hanging from every single wall, I decided to mount the surround speakers to the ceiling. I went ahead and cut holes on the drywall, custom built a speaker trim and mounted them using the wall mount bolt and some steel wire to hold them in place.
I then cut some pieces of insulation and put them tight around the speakers, using duct tape to make a good seal. After that, I used the same insulation I had removed before cutting the holes to completely cover the speakers, it worked well, I never felt any cold or warm air coming out of the ceiling.
Readers, how’s your home theater setup? Did you do it yourself? what do you think of mine? What would you have done differently?
Making your own DIY home theater installation? This is what you need:
- Screwdrivers and hand tools (always useful)
- Wood board for floating shelf, support brackets and screws to hold it in place
- Router and Hole Dozer Hole Saw (to round edges and drill holes for cables)
- Wall plates, speaker wire, and A/V cables
- Fish tape (will make your life way easier to run cables)
- Home theater equipment (TV, Receiver, Speakers, Subs, TV Mount)
- Trim for ceiling speakers
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