We are discussing how to deal with the basement ceiling. One of the options is reorganize those wires and pipes to make them as neat as possible and just paint those wires, pipes, joists and first floors. Then basement ceiling will be a little "higher". Don't know if it is a good option or not. But I have two questions about this:
1. is it allowed in term of the fire safety? The drywall ceiling and suspended ceiling both are fire proof ceilings.
2. the wires have to be put into metal conduit then?
Much depends on how much work you are able to do, and how much work you are willing to do, or how much you are willing to spend.
It is entirely feasible to replace piping and wiring with new flexible runs up through the joists so that the bottoms of the joists are clear to finish with drywall.
Painting wiring is not a good practice and IMO looks bad.
If wiring is protected from damage, it normally does not need to be in conduit. This is assuming the wiring is done to code in the first place. The type of wire which is installed in conduit is not the same as non-metallic sheathed cable. I have been in cities where all basement wiring had to be in conduit. There are sometimes local code exceptions.
I had this same idea. This is quite common in newer restaurants and bars. They usually go with a very dark color and paint the ductwork and conduits along with the joists and underside of the roof deck. But those are generally much higher ceilings, lit more carefully and generally more "industrial" than a residential basement.
I'm now wrestling with acoustic tile vs. drywall.