Large Mirror -- Too Ambitious?
We are doing a gut renovation on our master bathroom and would love to put a TV behind our main vanity mirror. The mirror will be about 7 feet wide and we’re thinking of putting an ~32" display behind the mirror (in the center). My main concern is serviceability followed by cost.
I imagine a 7’ wide mirror would be quite heavy to take on an off the wall if for some reason I need to get to the display (let me know if I’m mistaken). I was instead thinking of recessing the TV in the wall and creating an access panel on the other side of the wall. Thoughts on the best way to accomplish this?
Given the fact we’re doing a gut renovation we’ll need to buy a new mirror anyway. Any idea how much more expensive the Pilkington MirroView (or something simliar) is compared to standard mirror glass? Any recommendations on the glass for this type of application.
Obviously I could install multiple mirrors with only of them concealing the display, I kind of like the idea of one seamless mirror.
Sorry for the long first post, but would love some feedback.
I would def go for a large seamless mirror. I’m not sure on costs but you will want to make sure you use good quality material, this sounds like a “real” home project…not some toy/tinkering project. Don’t cheap out and use acrylic with film and such…you will be using this mirror everyday.
Serviceability wise…that will be tough, unless the monitor or HDMI dies I don’t see you needing to get to the display itself very often if ever. For software you can of course login via ssh/vnc and make all the changes you need to from a remote machine. If there is any way to keep the raspberry pi itself “out” of the mirror ( maybe cut out a small nook with a hinge door and route the cable behind the wall? That will make accessing it a lot easier without having to take down the mirror.
Finally don’t forget to take moisture into consideration if this is going to go in a bathroom!
I do have a suggestion: Keep the Pi where you can easily get to it and use a long HDMI cable. That will let you plug in a keyboard to work directly on the Pi for the occasional emergency. Plus, you can back up and replace the SD card in case of catastrophic failure. A wall HDMI socket down low could also work, as you can put the Pi inside or under some furniture where it won’t be seen. It would also let you upgrade to faster computers later if you like.
I’ve used www.twowaymirrors.com before and they have a glass specifically designed for Magic Mirror applications. It has something like 30% transparency and I’ve been very happy with it. They do handle custom orders and they can probably give you advice on the best way to mount and support the glass.
Check with your insurance company if this is ok. If something happens it could be that you don’t get any money because of wiring not following regulations or holes in the waterproof layers etc.
Thanks for all the advice so far. We’ll definately go with a legit mirror vs acrylic with film–we need the mirror to look great. My plan was to use an HDMI over CAT5/6 extender locating the Raspberry Pi in a remote location. I was originally thinking of putting the HDMI extender in the enclosure with the TV, but I think I’ll go ahead and locate the HDMI extender in the vanity and run an HDMI cable from the vanity to the mirror. That would give me one less thing to break behind the mirror.
I’m not too worried about the insurance company, what I would be concerned about is doing anything that doesn’t meet code (I live in NY). We’ll be pulling permits for the bathroom remodel so this would need to pass inspection.
We’ll be sure to use GFCI outlets and may look to add some sort of ventilation fan to keep the TV cool. I’m not overly worried about moisture as we’ll have ventilation in the bathroom itself and it’s 16’ x 10’ bathroom with the shower on the opposite side of the bathroom from the mirror.
Any thing else I should be thinking about?
@srb37 - I don’t know if it helps your situation or not, but I currently have a 35’ HDMI cable in my home theater and it works like a charm. I think the max run without a booster is 50’.
This project is getting closer to a reality.
I was able to look at a sample of the Pilkington Mirroview 50/50…it looks like it will be a good choice for this application. I’ve seen a number of positive posts on this forum about Mirroview, but if anyone has any further comments about the product feel free to share.
I am going to build a recessed wall niche behind the mirror with a fan for ventilation. The recessed wall niche should allow the TV to be flush with the finished wall. As for the mirror I’m thinking I will just mount it in a top and bottom J channel. In the event I need to service the TV (hopefully never) will carefully remove the mirror from the J channel.
With that said a few open items:
- I need something black behind the mirror…I was thinking either black felt or a black PVC board. Could I also just paint the wall black or would that not really work?
- Will the J channels be sufficient to secure a 7’ mirror. It would seem like a 7’ j channel on the top and bottom would be sufficient, however I keep reading about using mastic which I’d like to avoid so that I can remove the mirror if ever necessary.
- I plan on using a Samsung TV or something similar, given the application removing the bezel doesn’t seem necessary. Mt plan is to get a TV with a flat front bezel. Do you see any issues posed by not removing the bezel or is it mainly to make it thinner when not doing the recessed installation.
@srb37 - I’ve built a mirror where I ended up mounting the monitor about 1/2" behind the glass. It is noticeable but not terrible. The difference between the monitor and the thickness of the bezel should be much less and barely noticeable. I suspect it will bother you more than anyone else.
As for black felt: That should work. Personally, I use black construction paper and stick it to the glass surface.
I used 3M vinyl wrap for the black of mine, no glue just apply no air gap easy to work with and for giving if you make a mistake, UV treated as well, your going to need three people to lift that beast! I would put the monitor on the back of the frame this way it limits the monitor reflecting on its self and dust getting between the monitor and glass, I went for mirror view 50/50 too. I did have plans to recess mine but it would have been in a purpose made area, but settled on the stairs landing and that is all block work but makes the sunlight bounce all the way down the stairs, so it’s doing more than I could have hoped as well as a feature.