Technical Architects of high performance media spaces
KYD designs, drafts, tests and commissions dedicated music and movie environments that foster immersive entertainment experiences – that rare but unforgettable you-are-there effect. Dead-quiet, but acoustically aglow, our completed projects lead to the often-palpable sensation of being in the movie, rather than just in a movie-theater.
Serving clients world-wide from our base in the Sierra foothills of Northern California, we draw on a 25 year history of envisioning, modeling, documenting, testing and obsessively calibrating purpose-built screening rooms, private theaters and listening rooms for marquee-name directors, cinematographers, technologists and, especially, everyday movie and music lovers seeking to be transported to another place and time, for entering a story, a life, they wouldn’t have otherwise known or imagined.
What our clients come to discover is this:
Our renderings and color boards may depict a handsome room, exactly to your taste, but the magic isn’t in the décor. It isn’t in the size of the room or screen shown in our drawings, or how much you spend on A/V equipment, or which model chairs you buy. The magic comes from someplace deeper, from the room’s bones, its framing, ducts, conduits, insulation, sealants, adhesives, pipes, acoustic treatments and more. In fact, goosebumps are possible only when homeowners and their design team come to understand that it’s not the brands, models and features that determine the outcome, but basic physics.
Magic comes from optimizing the audience’s insulation from extraneous noise and vibration. And in modeling how fresh and clean the air will feel, even after a crowd has been watching movies in it non-stop for hours. It’s in how stable and quiet the electrical service is, and how the speakers were vetted, aimed and electronically fine-tuned. It’s in having the expertise and tools to turn the space below the rear seating platform into an effective bass control device or an engineered element in the duct path that removes the last vestige of fan-chop noise from the HVAC system. Magic comes from evaluating, optimizing, measuring and even listening to clients’ rooms before we’ve issued the construction drawings (and in some cases before the homeowner has even engaged a general contractor). Our clients and their architects and build-out teams always seem to be surprised when they first put on a pair of headphones and listen to these computer-based simulations, which can be likened to the sonic versions of architects’ virtual walk-throughs of spaces still in the design phase. We’ve been providing both for 25 years.
As technical architects for high performance music and movie venues we deliver one service extremely well; acoustical engineering design. We implement our formal architecture-structured process on every project and the only difference between each of our three service offerings is the degree in which we dive deep into finetuning the details. See our service matrix for clarity on the differences and advantages of each.
"In my 44 years’ participation in the design, manufacture and installation of music and film reproduction systems, Keith Yates Design’s residential theater project for retired cinematographer Rob Hahn is the finest theater overall I have ever experienced. Period."
Jon Herron, Trinnov Audio
While our finished projects are stunning when the lights are on, its real value sings for itself after the lights go off.
Keith Yates has been featured or profiled in over 100 publications and media outlets
in 6 countries and languages across the past 30 years.
Yates has been featured or proﬁled in journals as diverse as Rolling Stone, GQ, Archi-Tech, H.A. Pro, The Business Journal, MacWorld, MacWorld Japan, California Executive and This Week in Consumer Electronics. He has also been the subject of a radio feature distributed worldwide by the Associated Press, and a segment on the Home and Garden cable television channel.
- Rolling Stone
- H.A. Pro
- The Business Journal
- MacWorld Japan
- California Executive
- This Week in Consumer Electronics
- Home & Garden Cannel