With audio visual equipment becoming increasingly sophisticated, you no longer need to go to the cinema to experience movies in crisp high definition picture and mind blowing surround sound. If you’re thinking about bringing the movie theatre to you, the following is a list of things you need to consider when designing a home theatre system.
You can’t have the big screen experience without a big screen. The visual component of your home theatre system is the most important and where you want to spend the big bucks.
Nearly all new televisions sold today are flat screen – the days of the bulky cathode ray tube televisions are almost over. Flat screens have a better image quality, take up less room, are easier to mount and are comparatively cheaper than CRT.
There are a few different types of flat screen televisions:
– LED televisions use light emitting diodes (LED) as pixels for video display. They are typically brighter than other types of video display and for this reason can be used outdoors or in well lit indoor areas. LED televisions are usually the most expensive.
– LCD televisions use liquid crystal display (LCD) to modulate light. LCD televisions can also be LED backlit to improve picture quality.
– Plasma display television uses electrically charged ionised gases (known as plasmas). Plasma televisions have a wider colour range and deeper contrast and are commonly used in larger screen sizes (76 centimetres or more).
Alternately, if you have the space and the know-how, you could consider a projection television. Projectors provide the most true to life cinema experience but are more costly, more complicated to install, and produce noise and heat that can be distracting.
Audio is a close second when it comes to allocating your budget. A big screen TV is great but without the right sound system, you might as well be watching TV in your lounge room.
Before you begin building a sound system, you need to decide if you will use wall mounted or freestanding speakers. Both types have their advantages and disadvantages; wall mounted speakers are a more aesthetic choice but the sound quality can be compromised. You can always combine the two. Wireless speakers are also a good aesthetic choice.
For a true surround sound experience, you need a subwoofer and at least five speakers – three for the front and three in the back.
DVDs, music, video games… We ask a lot from our media player these days. When choosing a model, look for something that will accept Blu-ray DVDs, CDs and USB. You can even find media players with Wifi capabilities.
Not all media players are built the same. The most important thing to determine is that it will play the format you want. You should be able to find a list of the compatible formats on the box, or you can ask a sales person. Due to the large amount of digital data we store these days, you’ll also want something that’s easily navigable. Be sure to take a test drive in the showroom before you decide on a model.
Keep in mind that you may need to dedicate a portion of your budget to installation. Hidden wiring and connections, air conditioning to protect your equipment and dimmable lighting for an authentic cinema experience are all jobs that should be left to the professionals.
Let AV Everything help you with your home theatre design. Call 0418 737 021 to get started.