East Sussex A/V Dream House

East Sussex A/V Dream House

Sonia Zjawinski
Jan 6, 2010

Name: Jon Rea
Location: East Sussex
Square Footage: 1000 sq ft apartment
Years lived in: 4

Are you sitting down? Ok. Get ready to enter one of the most amazing spaces that marries interior design with a serious gadget fetish. Walk through each room of Jon Rea's East Sussex apartment and you'll find an impressive (and sometimes intimidating) collection of flat screens, stereo receivers, speakers, gaming systems, and hard drives, but you'll feel far from the Best Buy aisles. Balancing all the hardware is a serious eye for impeccable design. Come on in!

My/Our Style: Modern/Futurist

The inspiration for my home theater: Not sure really, but subliminally more than likely...Star Wars! :)

Favorite element in your space: The kitchen maybe? I spent a while designing the layout, and creating something that looked a bit different with the floating breakfast bar and vertically protruding taps which I hadn't seen done in any other kitchen. Oh, and all the electronics -- I'm a bit of a gadget whore!

Biggest challenge in designing my space: Getting the balance between technology and living right. The reason why you don't see a projector & fixed screen anywhere is that it is still a living area, not a dedicated cinema room. If we move to somewhere bigger, then a dedicated room is a certainty!

The other challenge is designing something that will hopefully look alright in a few years time. We designed and decorated our place a few years ago now, but hopefully it still looks ok and hasn't dated!

What friends say about my space: Erm, I think they like it,but they could just be being kind? It's not everyone's cup of char I know -- too cold and clinical for alot of people, and some general comments I get from certain internet forums are that it looks like something out of American Psycho!

Area where there is room for improvement/future projects: To replace the ceiling coving everywhere with a wide, shallow soffit containing halgoen downlighters. I hate coving, and we have been meaning to do this for a while now -- it's just so easy to get sidetracked! I'd replace the skirting also with a much shorter design. Apart from that, I quite like it the way it is. :)

Proudest DIY (do it yourself) project: The wall panels. My better half looked at me quite strangely when I suggested the idea I had for the walls, but luckily let me go for it. I find too many plain walls just boring, and I'm not really into covering every empty space with artwork, so the panels went up! The kitchen design I was quite proud of too.

Biggest indulgence with respect to my space: The AV setup -- naturally ! Not everyone's partner would allow them to have a full-size Kef Reference setup in their living room, but I'm very lucky in this respect. It does help that we're both well into our tunes -- those badboys get cranked every night after work.

Best advice about organizing or incorporating tech into the home: Hide them wires! Sometimes it's just not possible I agree, but everything looks that much slicker if you take some time to eradicate distractions to the eye. The same rule applies to all wires around the home -- even the lead to the toaster lol!

Secondly, but I think, just as important, is to be original. You don't have to place your TV on a dedicated stand with the components underneath it for example. You can use furniture that was originally designed for a completely different purpose, to display all your lovely tech, even if you have to modify it yourself.

I think you obtain more of a wow factor if you're just that little bit different to everyone else.....

Dream source for stuff: I haven't really got one place that I look to, though I will say that the Italians have it locked as regards to design and furniture, as do the Scandinavians. You can get just as much inspiration from an Ikea catalogue as you can from a high end Italian designer.

Technology wise....heck any electrical shop is a dream source to me lol !

Tech Hardware:

Main Room:

  • Pioneer LX608D
  • Denon 4308 as processor
  • Rotel RMB-1575 and RB-1562 power amps
  • Kef Reference 205/2's, 204/2 C, 201/2's and XQ10's - All Piano Black
  • 2 X JL Audio Fathom F112's - Piano Black
  • SKY HD
  • Sony PS3 (Launch 60GB)
  • Nintendo Wii
  • Denon DCD700S
  • Logitech Harmony 1000 remote with RF extender
  • Chord Odyssey 4 & Black Rhodium cable
  • Qed HDMI leads & Interconnects


  • Sony 46X3500
  • Yamaha RX-V2600
  • Kef 3005 SE's
  • 2nd PS3 (Launch 60GB)
  • 2nd Sky HD box (Multiroom)
  • Squeezebox 3
  • Slimline PS2
  • Black PSP fat, Black PSPGo, White PSPGo
  • Nintendo DS Lite - All Black
  • Nintendo DS Lite - Cobalt & Black
  • Logitech Harmony 555 remote
  • Logitech Dinovo Mini
  • Qed HDMI's, opticals, and Silver Anniversary XT

Bedroom 2/PC Room:

  • Sony 40S2030 (used as pc monitor)
  • Technics seperates (sentimental value!)
  • Mission 73's
  • Sony Vaio VGX TP2S/B
  • Logitech Dinovo Edge
  • Logitech MX-Air mouse
  • Octava HDMI switcher
  • Qed HDMI's and Silver Anniversary XT
  • Sony NWA-1000 and NWZ-A829 MP3's
  • Sony HDR-SR12E Handycam
  • Denon AH-D2000 cans

  • Kitchen appliances by Gorenje Ora-Ito, Miele, De Dietrich and Siemens.


  • Kartell-plastics modular sofa system, black leather armchairs, bar stools and pc-room lounger by Dwell.
  • Flooring in main room is Italian Polished Porcelain.


  • Ikea Besta system with Holmbo doors and drawer fronts in the middle room, and Ikea Stolmen system in the pc room.


  • Z-Wave & X-10 remote lighting throughout.


  • Main Room: Dulux Pure Brilliant White
  • Bedroom 1: Dulux Cocoa Blush number 1 and Rum Caramel number 6
  • Pc-Room: Dulux Rum Caramel number 4.
  • Middle Room: Dulux Rum Caramel number 4.

Thanks so much to Jon for sharing his beautiful space!

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