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With the right planning, investing in a home theater can be one of the best enhancements to your lifestyle. Home theaters are great for relaxing, entertaining, and bringing the whole family together. One important thing to remember in considering your many home theater options is that the sum of the parts is usually greater than the whole.
Media Room or Home Theater?
The first step is to plan your space. Will you have a dedicated home theater room or will your system be in a multi-purpose media room? Either way can be fantastic. A dedicated home theater is designed specifically for entertainment: enjoying movies, sports, TV, and video gaming. Basements, attics, bonus rooms, or spare rooms are great as dedicated home theater spaces. A media room serves for more than entertaining. A family room or bonus room usually doubles as a media room as well.
Screen Size and Viewing Distance
The next steps are deciding both the location and size for your video display. Both the Society of Motion Picture and Television Engineers (SMPTE) and THX Ltd. (a developer of quality standards founded by Lucasfilm) have recommendations on this subject. This step is very important to get right, and is probably the most difficult one to fix if you get it wrong.
Acoustics and Soundproofing
It's important to have a great picture, but a movie without good sound is a terrible experience. You must be able to clearly understand dialogue. Great sound immerses you in a film's sound effects. All things being equal, acoustic treatments (these can be carefully done, normal room furnishings) have a larger impact on the sound than almost any component. Another thing to consider is soundproofing. Will late night viewing disturb others? Should you do something about it?
Choosing the Right Equipment
This is the fun part for most people. Significant improvements in video technology can give you a great picture for a fraction of the cost only 10 years ago. This allows more room in your budget for great sound. Unlike video, audio pricing has held very steady in its cost to performance ratio. Recent improvements in home theater speakers will make your surround sound experience even more fun. Matching all your equipment up is where Gramophone experts and our experience will be a big help.
Home Theater Magic
In many cases, spending a few extra dollars on a great remote control, lighting control, or a popcorn machine can add wow to your creation. We've got lots of suggestions and advice about how to create your own personal magic.
Other areas to consider are expert audio and video calibration; electrical and power needs; ventilation and HVAC planning; and integrating video gaming.
When your installation is complete, we will instruct you in the best ways to get the most fun from your new installation. You can also rest easy knowing if you have a system emergency we offer on-call technicians and an in-house service department.
We hope you have lots of fun with your future home theatre or media room!