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Man Builds $1.5 Million Star Trek-Themed Home Theater (cepro.com) 162

CIStud writes: This $1.5 million "Star Trek" home theater is the envy of every geek on the planet. The theater is a reconstruction of the bridge of the Starship Enterprise from "Star Trek: Next Generation" and also includes $1 million worth of memorabilia from the classic sci-fi TV show. The home theater was created by financier Marc Bell with the help from Jay Miller of Boca Raton-based Acoustic Innovations. The two started working on the home cinema in 2002 -- before construction of Bell's house even began -- and it took them four years to complete. CEPro reports: "A D-Box controller manipulates hydraulics installed beneath the floorboards, meaning the entire room shakes when anything loud happens on screen. The room also includes a JBL Synthesis sound system, which at the time of installation was only used in commercial theaters. The audio system is currently being upgraded to Dolby Atmos specifications and Bell plans to install a 4K projector. A big movie fan, Bell has had over 3,500 films digitized, which are stored and streamed through a Kaleidescape server. He also spent approximately $35,000 on a Prima Cinema system, allowing him and his family to watch films at home the day they are released in commercial cinemas. A wraparound control center surrounds the 11 custom leather chairs in the theater, eight of which recline into beds, while the doors that open into the theater are exact replicas of the Turbolift doors as seen on the TV show. When someone steps on the circular "transporter," the doors open with that familiar "whoosh" sound." Bell apparently likes to spend his money on others too. He has rented a local movie theater for every Star Trek film released in the past 25 years and has taken all of his employees, friends and their children along on opening night. The Wall Street Journal posted a video on YouTube of the home theater.
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Man Builds $1.5 Million Star Trek-Themed Home Theater

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  • by Anonymous Coward on Thursday July 21, 2016 @11:35PM (#52558673)

    Mom? Look what I made!

    • I doubt that his mom gave him over a million dollars to build a Star Trek themed theater in the basement of her house, but if that actually happened I'd look up to him with envy instead of scoffing. Even that scenario is far more likely to get moist panties thrown at him than anonymously making fun of him on Slashdot.

      • I am a geek. A true geek. While I appreciate the submitter's belief that he speaks for all geeks I assure you he is wrong. I don't envy this person; I pity them. Seriously ... If you have a million dollars at your disposal and the most productive and cool thing you can think of to do with it is a themed entertainment center then you are truly pitiful. Every true geek on the planet knows that a massively parallel computer system with as many monitors as possible is correct use of large wads of cash.
        • However...
          That computer will be out of date in a few years. But the home theater (Albeit quirky) will raise the value of his home and his assets that 1.5 million dollars didn't go to waste, as he can always sell his home with the extra addition and make up the money, as well he can sell off many of his collections at action for more than he bought them for.

          Getting that super computer is a bad choice.

          • by edittard ( 805475 ) on Friday July 22, 2016 @09:10AM (#52560007)

            Spending money on a house doesn't necessarily increase its value at all, let alone by the amount spent.

            • Well for 1.5 Million I expect it was adding additional livable Square Footage to the home. Vs. just what I have seen on the renovations. I only see perhaps 200k vs of extra renovations to make existing rooms look treky.

          • by jedidiah ( 1196 )

            Even for something that is not a niche novelty item, money thrown into your home to "upgrade" it will NEVER be recovered. Your house will be able to fetch the market price per square foot in your area. That's it. Anything you add to your house to suit yourself is money you're never going to get back. So you better just do it for it's own sake.

            Amateurs...

          • However...
              But the home theater (Albeit quirky) will raise the value of his home

            It will probably make it unsellable.

        • Every true geek on the planet knows that a massively parallel computer system with as many monitors as possible is correct use of large wads of cash.

          You didn't look at the pictures of what's underneath his explosive consoles? Dude, RTFA!

        • by jedidiah ( 1196 )

          I can appreciate the better AV gear. I can appreciate replicating a real theatre experience. I can appreciate creating a more casual version of the same thing. Beyond that, you've lost me. I am more of a purist.

          That includes watching black & white originals and avoiding other attempts to "tinker" with the original material.

          Overwrought home theatres are just not something that impress me in the slightest.

        • Take a look at the guy and his trophy wife. He must have tens if not hundreds of millions.
          A couple millions for a funny project? Why not.

    • by Tablizer ( 95088 )

      You mean Mother of All Basements. This is Slashdot.

    • "Bell's eight-bedroom, 27,000-square-foot home was listed at $35 million in 2014."

      Yeah... keep telling yourself that he's a pathetic, basement-dwelling geek who lives with his parents as you cry yourself to sleep after a dinner of ramen in your one bedroom efficiency that you can barely afford.

      • by cdrudge ( 68377 )

        I don't have a recreated $1.5m Star Trek bridge-themed home theater, so I'd say even in a one bedroom efficiency eating ramen I'm still better off in life.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Thursday July 21, 2016 @11:39PM (#52558685)

    a lot of over priced electronics, custom furnishings, wood work, etc.. the essential (albeit high end) components to view hdtv/dvd/bd probably cost 75-100k, tops. not that impressive, just some rich fuck with money to burn. sorry.

    • by MightyMartian ( 840721 ) on Thursday July 21, 2016 @11:48PM (#52558701) Journal

      And worst of all, under the new rules, he can only sit in it for 30 minutes at a time!

    • Why is it whenever i see one of these they look like crap? The theater is too bright, The ready room looks like quark's bar from DS9. So they don't go together. At least he could of used Ten forward for the drink/snack bar.

      Oh sure he has a million dollars in props. but he could hire a proper decorator to create a consistent theme of the star trek rooms?

      • Appropriate light levels for viewing aren't appropriate light levels for film/video production. Unless, of course you want to see shadows moving in a mostly-gray environment that doesn't show any detail. . .

    • The $1 million worth of memorabilia is an investment and he expects to get his money back and more from that.

      I don't fault him for spending a few hundred grand to enjoy his investment instead of putting it in a safe deposit box.

      • by jedidiah ( 1196 )

        I know a guy that has plenty of this kind of stuff. He's a real vulture. He waits around for bargains and then swoops. He buys from the people that pay too much for this stuff. He buys from the morons that would brag about how much they spent on this stuff.

    • That's a lot of money to spend to pretend to be living in a post-Capitalist utopia.
    • by tlhIngan ( 30335 )

      a lot of over priced electronics, custom furnishings, wood work, etc.. the essential (albeit high end) components to view hdtv/dvd/bd probably cost 75-100k, tops. not that impressive, just some rich fuck with money to burn. sorry.

      Not really, high end components can easily top out at $100K each.

      A Trinnov processor, for example, 32 channels can easily run $50K for the unit itself. They make 16 channel versions that average around $20K. This is the processor only, (This is measured in channels - your 7.1 audio

  • by Anonymous Coward on Thursday July 21, 2016 @11:40PM (#52558689)

    The theater is a reconstruction of the bridge of the Starship Enterprise from "Star Trek: Next Generation".

    I'm sorry but this [cepro.com] barely looks similar to this [startrek.com].

    • by gweilo8888 ( 921799 ) on Thursday July 21, 2016 @11:52PM (#52558709)
      Not sure why you've gotten modded down, because your post is quite correct. It would be accurate to call it Star Trek-themed. To call it a "reconstruction" is to severely overstate its accuracy.
    • by Anonymous Coward

      "Man with too much money is blind"

      This is the same Marc Bell who owned FriendFinder, Penthouse, and other online Porn sites, and his devotion to his products may indeed be making him go blind...

    • by Tablizer ( 95088 )

      Shhhh, it's only a model.

    • While that may be true, the compromises appear to have been made with good intentions. I mean, the guy apparently built it to share with his family, so some accommodations to comfort would be necessary. Anyway, can you really fault the guy for wanting a love-seat instead of those cock-blocker seats?
    • by MrKaos ( 858439 )

      I'm sorry but this [cepro.com] barely looks similar to this [startrek.com].

      Yeah, a red shirt would never live long enough to sit in a captains chair.

    • I'm sorry but this barely looks similar to this.

      The stage set is not a practical home theater, family room or gallery for ST props and other memorabilia.

  • by fustakrakich ( 1673220 ) on Thursday July 21, 2016 @11:44PM (#52558695) Journal

    They order the house to be demolished.

  • Wow, why all the hate?
    This dude has a sweet home theatre room complete with a pile of Tribbles in the corner.
    Be happy for the guy!

    This is America where you can live you dream!

    If Mr. Bell ever invited me to the USS Bell, I'd gladly come aboard and take in a movie along with some pinball.

    • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

      I do think it is awesome.

      However, I will ask how many starving people he could have fed or provided clothes to school children or how hard his employees had to work to earn the money he took?

      I am not hating but sometimes life is not fair. My boss grew up poor and we got into a horrible argument with him yesterday. Another coworker was dating this girl who was broke and didn't have a computer to finish college. He had 2 spare laptops at home. We both argued he shouldn't give them to her as they are Macs and

      • by Dutch Gun ( 899105 ) on Friday July 22, 2016 @01:25AM (#52558935)

        Is it really that black and white? Spending money on toys means a bunch of people have a job creating, installing or servicing those products. I work in the videogame industry, and I have a good job because people spend money on themselves (or their kids) buying videogames. In turn, I spend my own money on lots of different things, which in turn help other people out. That's how economies function. Does it really matter what the products are?

        Moreover, charity can be money down a black hole if you're not extremely careful. The *real* Bill Gates has learned that it's not always easy to ensure charity goes to worthwhile causes or produces any sort of measurable results, improving peoples' lives, even if you're giving away billions.

        • Yes. It really is that black and white. He could have watched his shows on a very large TV screen in a nicely appointed room and fed a lot of people with the rest of the money. He didn't. It is his right to be selfish, but it IS selfish beyond a shadow of a doubt none the less. Trying to claim it isn't is completely disingenuous.
          • by jedidiah ( 1196 )

            People should be able to feed themselves. If they are unable to do this, then this is the real problem. Giving people handouts may make make you feel superior, but they don't deal with the underlying problem.

      • That depends. We donate a bit of money here and there and companies like Kaleidescape and Prima Cinema lay off people and go out of business leaving even more people in the welfare line just so a few people have been fed for a few days.

        But we have endless waste in absolutely everything we do. Look down and ask yourself if you really needed to spend $40 on those shoes or if $35 would have been enough to protect your feet. Quite frankly $1.5m for a hobby is spare change in the world of premium spending. Inste

      • by vivian ( 156520 )

        At least he is spending his money, which means it gets cycled through the economy employing other people. It would be much worse if he just hoarded it in some hidden offshore account like so many apparently do to avoid paying tax.

        When you have big piles of money sitting in offshore accounts, not only has the tax been dodged (oh sorry I mean legally minimised), it is also a drain on the economy because the money has been effectively taken out of circulation instead of being either reinvested in a business w

      • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

        by MrKaos ( 858439 )

        My boss grew up poor and we got into a horrible argument with him yesterday. Another coworker was dating this girl who was broke and didn't have a computer to finish college.

        Is she hot? smart enough to talk to and have anything to offer or is she one of these 'take take take chicks'?

        He had 2 spare laptops at home. We both argued he shouldn't give them to her as they are Macs and worth a lot.

        Set them up so she can use them and invite her around. No, you can't take them home.

        Also it was just 1 date.

        Transl

      • by LWATCDR ( 28044 )

        "had to work to earn the money he took?"
        What?
        Wow...
        If he is running his companies really well he is providing them with jobs and keeping them from getting laid off.
        Really?
        At at the same time you and your boss told someone with two laptops that he should not give one to a person that can not afford one for college?
        "However, I will ask how many starving people he could have fed or provided clothes to school children"
        Well do you have cable TV? How much do you pay? http://www.uniteforsight.org/h... [uniteforsight.org]
        It takes $10

        • Even more to the point, should we condemn someone for not getting a high-paying stressful job and using their excess income to help others? Selfish slackers who don't make the most of themselves are very unfair to those who could benefit from them sharing?
    • by aliquis ( 678370 )

      Wow, why all the hate?
      This dude has a sweet home theatre room complete with a pile of Tribbles in the corner.
      Be happy for the guy!

      Those Tribbles are trouble.

    • Because some people have interesting hobbies, and other people have bitching about everything and everyone on Slashdot.

      Quite frankly the internet is full of a lot of useless trolls and articles like this have a tendency to bring them out of the woodworks.

    • by judoguy ( 534886 )

      Wow, why all the hate? This dude has a sweet home theatre room complete with a pile of Tribbles in the corner. Be happy for the guy!

      Mod this up! Why the hate? Just because I probably wouldn't take his theater for free (not my design ethic at all), I don't begrudge him his fun.

      And another poster nails it with recognizing that the money spent on it benefits other people directly.

      "Why couldn't he just give that money to poor people?" The 2016 US budget just for Pensions, Health Care, Education and Welfare comes to around 2 1/2 trillion [usgovernmentspending.com]. His theater money ain't gonna help.

    • by jon3k ( 691256 )

      Wow, why all the hate?

      Because they're jealous. The guy's got a hot trophy wife and millions of dollars to burn. I say good for him. It's his money, he earned it and he's enjoying it.

  • by Anonymous Coward

    The theater is cool, but the matching his-and-hers outfits are just weird. Seriously, who the hell colour coordinates their outfits with their wife? It's just a bit Stepford.

  • It took me four reloads to get to the page.

    As for his home theatre? Meh.

  • by Anonymous Coward

    ... Probably has one too

  • If you're gonna spend that much on a custom home theatre room, at least make it LOOK like the Enterprise D bridge. Not even fucking close.Picard [quickmeme.com] disapproves...
  • It might have cost that guy 1.5 million to build, but that doesn't make it worth 1.5 million. Not very many Star Trek fans have 1.5 million in spare change. And most people who do have 1.5 million laying around to spend on a theater, probably wouldn't want it. They'd rather spend their money personalizing their own.
  • Free the rights? (Score:4, Interesting)

    by Octorian ( 14086 ) on Friday July 22, 2016 @01:26AM (#52558937) Homepage

    I wish a bunch of people like this would come together, and see how much of their money it would take to free the rights to Star Trek once and for all. The simple fact that "fan films" are approaching such a level that the studios are now reacting negatively to them, is proof positive that those studios can no longer be trusted to carry on the franchise.

    • Why? just create a "star-trek-like" open source universe. We'll call it "Cosmos Odyssey", featuring the Starship U.S.S. Constitution. The Captain "Richard Fabius Nelson" and his science officer "Spork" from the planet "Titan" lead a multi-species crew on a six year mission to explore strange new planets, seek out new civilizations, and to bravely go where no species has gone before.
      • The NCC-1701 was a Constitution class starship, so you can't use that.

      • In our universe that's probably already close enough that you get slapped with a DMCA bullshit order.

      • Why? just create a "star-trek-like" open source universe. We'll call it "Cosmos Odyssey...." featuring the Starship U.S.S. Constitution.,,,

        There doesn't seem much point in asking the geek to come up with something new.

        That said:

        The modern era of science fiction begins in the 1920s. There is a huge body of first-class work out there in the public domain that hasn't been touched in decades. But to make use of it you would have to design and build original sets and props. Re-imagine the characters and universe for a contemporary audience.

      • Seriously. I get so tired of the complaints "waaaah, I can't copy someone else's work because it's copyrighted!".

    • I wish a bunch of people like this would come together, and see how much of their money it would take to free the rights to Star Trek once and for all.

      That would be the ownership and global distribution rights to fifty + years of commercially viable film and television productions plus all ancillary rights to books, models, toys, games, costumes. logo wear and other merchandising.

      Not to mention the expense of paying out residuals for the actors, etc. Oh, and you are going to need to set aside some funds to preserve and maintain all that film and video. Not to mention sets, costumes and props.

  • by freeze128 ( 544774 ) on Friday July 22, 2016 @01:56AM (#52558983)
    Man builds 1.5 Million Dollar Star Trek Bridge home theater.

    "It's a great place to watch Game of Thrones."

    AAAAHHHHHH!!!!!!
  • ... no need to see the pics, we already pretty much know what it looks like!

  • Is a Gorn bobblehead more or less incongruous than a Spock bobblehead? Tough call, but I'm going with Spock. "Bobbling is not logical". Kirk bobblehead makes perfect sense though.

  • ... why didn't he buy a better looking trophy wife?

  • by Lumpy ( 12016 ) on Friday July 22, 2016 @06:44AM (#52559501) Homepage

    Are we recycling old stories now? This has appeared on Slashdot no less than 6 times by now.

  • Proof you can be middle aged with a gut, Star Trek cave, and a hot wife. Of course he seems to be missing the Star Trek Stategic Operations Simulator arcade game.
  • but there is a point where frivolous becomes ludicrous. Sure it is neat and I am guilty of having a bit of an impulse control issue with gadgets but if he wants to blow his wad, I am sure there are better places (more philanthropic) to spend his money.
    The irony of it is hilarious that he would spend so much on making his media room look like a bridge from a starship from a galaxy where money is no longer coveted.

    • by LWATCDR ( 28044 )

      Do you pay for HBO? Do you go to the movies? By wine or a drink at a bar? Buy coffee at a coffee shop? Have an gaming console? Go out to dinner or clubbing?

      I am sure there are better places (more philanthropic) to spend your money.

    • by vlad30 ( 44644 )
      I am willing to bet he gave away a lot more money for philanthropic reasons last year than most slashdotters did
  • Bad enough to waste money on this, but the cinema system costs $35k and shows new movies (from some studios) at a mere $500 a pop in 1080p. A total waste of money.
  • some people have way too much money.

    I say this as a Star Trek fan too.

  • The tribbles lining the floor are a nice touch.

  • Anyone want to take bets on how long it'll take for CBS/Paramount to sue him for not only building it, infringing on their 'IP', but for posting it on YouTube? Will this be the first time in history that a 'DMCA Takedown' involved 'taking something down' with a wrecking ball and backhoe? Think they'll just destroy his basement, or demolish the entire house?

    Oh and all you assholes out there who are going to give me shit for liking 'classic' Star Trek and NOT liking the crap they're producing now? Especially

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