Star Trek mega-fan boldly goes where no home theater owner has gone before

Show Us Yours: Anil's home theater has an actual holodeck, and that's just the beginning. It must be seen to be believed.


David Carnoy

See full bio
1 of 61 Anil/CNET

This is Anil, who lives in central New Jersey. His home theater seeks out new life and new levels of Trekkie fandom. Let's take a tour.

2 of 61 Anil/CNET

He got the idea to build a Star-Trek themed home theater after attending the 50th anniversary convention at the Jacob Javits Center in New York back in 2016 with his son. He decided to incorporate elements of both the original series and Star Trek: The Next Generation.  

3 of 61 Anil/CNET

This is the entrance to the basement. "Currently we're at the Star Trek Fleet Command starbase," Anil says. "And we're going to head into the starship."

4 of 61 Anil/CNET

Thanks to a set of sensors he's installed, the opening theme music to Star Trek automatically plays when he heads downstairs. "Space, a final frontier..."

5 of 61 Anil/CNET

At the bottom of the stairs he has a Star Trek Communicator, which he bought online. When you pass an automatic sensor, you hear the signature sound of the automatic starship doors opening and closing. 

(The phrase "Captain to the Bridge" is 'shopped into the photo above, not painted on the wall, to indicate sound effects. Get ready for more.)

6 of 61 Anil/CNET

Needless to say, his son is part of the crew, too.

7 of 61 Anil/CNET

Anil built a transporter using laser lights and sound effects. 

8 of 61 Anil/CNET

This is how he created the lighting and sound effects.

9 of 61 Anil/CNET

With props.

10 of 61 Anil/CNET

This is the "engineering room." Anil considered building more elaborate warp drive engines but instead settled on ones that could also house his memorabilia collection. 

11 of 61 Anil/CNET

Anil and son with the crew of Deep Space 9 from the 50th anniversary convention.

12 of 61 Anil/CNET

More memorabilia. 

13 of 61 Anil/CNET

The crew from the original series in an "authentic" poster along with a Star Trek wall clock.

14 of 61 Anil/CNET

He decided to build the home theater as a holodeck -- a room where The Next Generation crew hung out and interacted with holographic virtual reality environments. He couldn't quite get to four dimensions, but he does have a 3D projector.

There were several Holodeck rooms on the show. This one announces itself: The doors automatically open as you approach and a voice says "Holo Deck 3 is ready."

15 of 61 Anil/CNET

The tiered seating being built. 

16 of 61 Anil/CNET

There's a spot for the projector in back.

17 of 61 Anil/CNET

Close up of the pneumatic door under construction.

18 of 61 Anil/CNET

Everything was a little messy for a while.

19 of 61 Anil/CNET

But this is how it turned out. The theater was completed in April of 2018.

20 of 61 Anil/CNET

View from the other side.

21 of 61 Anil/CNET

Close up of the doors leading out.

22 of 61 Anil/CNET

Anil mounted this plaque next to the doors.

23 of 61 Anil/CNET

Lights dimmed.

24 of 61 Anil/CNET

The screen is a whopping 21 feet wide by 8.5 feet high.

25 of 61 Anil/CNET

Captain James T. Kirk in all his glory.

26 of 61 Anil/CNET

This is what it looks like without the wide-angle lens.

27 of 61 Anil/CNET

The back row. Note the authentic railing and bright blue LED lighting.

28 of 61 Anil/CNET

From the other side.

29 of 61 Anil/CNET

He put red LED safety lights on stairs.

30 of 61 Anil/CNET

To control all those LEDs you need a... LED controller.

31 of 61 Anil/CNET

A look out the window.

32 of 61 Anil/CNET

The view's just as good from this one.

33 of 61 Anil/CNET

Here's the Optoma projector with the custom wide angle lens that Anil built.

34 of 61 Anil/CNET

A better look at the lens.

35 of 61 Anil/CNET

The lens close up.

36 of 61 Anil/CNET

Back of the projector.

37 of 61 Anil/CNET

Another shot of the screen.

38 of 61 Anil/CNET

The Enterprise's screen on the screen.

39 of 61 Anil/CNET

The equipment is hidden away.

40 of 61 Anil/CNET

Front of the Denon AVR-S710W AV receiver, a step-down version of the AVR-S910W we reviewed in 2015.

41 of 61 Anil/CNET

He's also got this Denon 11.2 channel receiver in the mix.

42 of 61 Anil/CNET

And this Harmon Kardon AVR for sound effects.

43 of 61 Anil/CNET

For 3D viewing sessions Anil has lots of active 3D glasses for guests.

44 of 61 Anil/CNET

Each pair synchs to the projector to create the 3D effect for the viewer.

45 of 61 Anil/CNET

Here's an infrared transmitter so the glasses can synch to the projector properly.

46 of 61 Anil/CNET

In case a big crowd gets the space too stuffy, there's an air purifier.

47 of 61 Anil/CNET

The chairs have lights and USB charging ports, as well as cup holders.

48 of 61 Anil/CNET

Hidden storage compartment in the armrest.

49 of 61 Anil/CNET

Anil used a lot of Energy Take Classic speakers, some of CNET's favorites back in the day.

50 of 61 Anil/CNET

Subwoofer with lighting effects device on top.

51 of 61 Anil/CNET

Behind the scenes of those pneumatic doors.

52 of 61 Anil/CNET

Yes, that's the manual override switch in case the doors get stuck.

53 of 61 Anil/CNET

Lighting controls.

54 of 61 Anil/CNET

There's a Klipsch sub in the corner.

55 of 61 Anil/CNET

The sub is under a poster displaying different types of ships.

56 of 61 Anil/CNET

Anil's collection of 3D films.

57 of 61 Anil/CNET

Anil's DVD and game collection is no joke, but he's no Cinema Sicko.

58 of 61 Anil/CNET

Hanging in the holodeck.

59 of 61 Anil/CNET

He even watches standard TV in the room sometimes.

60 of 61 Anil/CNET

Here's one more look with the lights on.

61 of 61 Anil/CNET

For those who want a real insider's view of the whole set-up, you can watch Anil's awesome video tour above. It gives you a real sense of everything that went into the theater, including all the sound effects.

That's it for this installment of CNET's Show Us Yours, Star Trek edition. Live long and prosper, Anil.

Check out more great home theaters here. If you want to submit pictures of your own home theater, you can do so by clicking this link

More Galleries

2022's Best TV Shows You Can't Miss on Netflix, HBO, Disney Plus and More

More Galleries

2022's Best TV Shows You Can't Miss on Netflix, HBO, Disney Plus and More

95 Photos
Movies Coming in 2022 From Marvel, Netflix, DC and More

More Galleries

Movies Coming in 2022 From Marvel, Netflix, DC and More

84 Photos
The Absolute Best Games on Nintendo Switch

More Galleries

The Absolute Best Games on Nintendo Switch

36 Photos
The 51 Best VR Games

More Galleries

The 51 Best VR Games

53 Photos
DIY scratched screen repair: Magic and myths

More Galleries

DIY scratched screen repair: Magic and myths

10 Photos
2023 Mercedes-Benz EQS SUV Is a Three-Row Electric Luxobarge

More Galleries

2023 Mercedes-Benz EQS SUV Is a Three-Row Electric Luxobarge

68 Photos
Rugged 2023 Ram 2500 HD Rebel Debuts

More Galleries

Rugged 2023 Ram 2500 HD Rebel Debuts

12 Photos