This area of the project was originally called "Lighting" but since the electrical work encompassed much more than that, I changed the section's name. This section documents all the wiring, both low and high voltage, as well as the fixtures.

Here's what the media ports looked like in the beginning. Actually, they didn't exist at all up to a year ago. When I got my new surround receiver I added the speaker jacks and in wall conduit runs to the speaker locations. When we got the Tivo player, I added the combination phone and cable jack. Now it's time to rip these out and move to the next phase.

I didn't bother taking "before" pictures of the high voltage locations since they aren't quite as exciting.

This picture shows the basement stairwell side of the living room wall where there was a switch for the driveway light, a switch that controlled 3 outlets (and all the lighting in the room), and a fan speed switch. I removed all that and expanded the hole to fit a 5-gang box for all the new switches. Since there was a stud between two of the old switches, I had to remove it and frame around the new hole. This picture shows the new framing. I also had to remove and re-add the basement light switch.

This is the living room side of the new main switch box. The three switches on the right are Leviton X10 dimmer modules and the two on the left are fan speed switches. We opted not to have lights on the fans, so the switches just control fan speed. Each side dimmer controls 12' of new track light. The middle dimmer controls two 12' tracks.

This picture shows the result of 8 hours of work by myself and my father. What you're looking at is a joint made in 2" PVC jacketed, flexible metal conduit. There's 25' of conduit that connects the hole in the ceiling where the old fan was mounted and the media jack panel. The conduit is large enough to allow a premade video cable (VGA or DVI) to be pulled between those locations.

Here's another angle on the conduit. The conduit is run inside the room trusses, out through the eve of the house (pictured here) and down inside the wall to the media panel. The joint is covered in black electrical tape to protect the exposed copper wire used to electrically connect the two pieces of conduit for shielding. The conduit shield is connected to all the conduit shields in the media panel box.

Here you can see some of the new track lights and one of the two new fans. All the track lights were purchased online from USA Light & Electric which I highly recommend for their prices and selection. The fans are basic Home Depot items made by Hunter.

Here's more track on the ceiling and the wall mounted outlet for the future motorized screen. The wire hanging out of the jack will be the center channel speaker feed. The firring strip on the wall is where I staple up the screen mockup when I want to use the projector to watch big TV or movies.

This is the new media panel box after starting the drywall work. I cut a larger hole than necessary to allow me to connect the 5 conduit runs to the box.

Here's the main switch area before spackling. The patch near the top is where I removed an electric baseboard heater thermostat. I'll be adding oil fired in-floor radiant heating someday, but that's another story.

Here's the finished media panel. You may notice it's a little higher than the outlet next to it and that was not intentional. Working in that tight little corner makes measuring difficult and I didn't notice until after I drywalled. Oh well, the HT component rack will block all this from view eventually.

I used Leviton's QuickPort products for the jacks. I used the Decora 6 position plates for each location except the one on the left where I used a cable TV plate, removed the jack, and cut a slot for the video cable. The front left/center/right channels are on the left. The in-floor tactile tranducers are in the middle. The rear left/right are on the right. The rightmost plate contains ethernet, projector lift serial/IR transmit port, motorized screen/IR receiver port, phone line, and cable TV. I also have a bunch of unused ports for the future.

This part of the Home Theater Project is complete. All the wiring is installed and working as expected. I haven't done any X10 work on the dimmers yet, but they will eventually be controlled by the HTPC to dim the lights before/after movies and such.