Having a large screen television with surround sound speakers is nice. Having a home theater takes things to a different level. For many, the idea of having a home theater is a dream. They see it as something that only the super rich are able to enjoy.
The reality is that having a home theater is more attainable now than it has ever been at any time in recent history. This is because many of the components needed for a home theater, including the screen, the projector, and the surround sound, are cheaper than they have ever been. Outdoor Movie HQ has a number of detailed guides that can help you sort through the home theater projectors and screens that are available.
There are always going to be those high-end and expensive products, but you really don’t need them to get a stellar home theater system. In this guide we are going to briefly discuss seven steps you can take to create a home theater system that will make your friends and family green with envy.
Read more after the jump:
Step One: Decide the Location of Your Home Theater
If your home has a basement, this will be the best place for you to create your home theater. Your basement is surrounded by dirt, wood, cement, and brick. If you’re building a theater in your basement, we assume that there’s drywall with insulation. The floor is covered in carpet, and you’re likely going to fill the room with furniture. All of this adds to the sound dampening and acoustic properties of the room.
If a basement is not available, choose a room that does not have close proximity to rooms where people could be bothered by the noise, such as a bedroom or study. Add sound insulation and sound barriers to keep the sound trapped inside the room.
Step Two: Select a Projector or Television
There are pros and cons for each. Just thinking from the standpoint of cost, a 4K television that is around 55 inches will cost less than a 4K projector. When you start to increase the size of the television, a 4K television and a 4K projector start to cost about the same. LG, for example, has an 86 inch LED 4K television that will run about $3,000. A high quality 4K projector is going to run between $2,500 and $5,000. The difference is that many 4K ultra HD projectors have a viewable screen size up to 300 inches. If you’re looking at price per inch of screen size, a projector steals the show. And, really, if you’re building a home theater, you’re looking for something that’s going to give that wow factor.
Step Three: Get the Right Sound For the Environment
The size of your home theater is going to determine the size and type of speakers that you want. If the room is large, you are going to need something that has decent size subwoofers and speakers. If the space is smaller, you will still be able to get clear sound using a smaller package.
There are four criteria we feel you should consider when selecting the sound for your home theater:
• A Minimum of Five Channels: The five channels would be your left, right, center, surrounds, and subwoofer.
• Doubles As a Music Playing System: Sometimes you just want to sit in your theater and listen to good music at a high quality level.
• Easy Room Calibration: You want the system to be easy for you to calibrate for the room that you are in. If the system is not calibrated, the quality of the sound will suffer.
• DIY Install: There are a number of audio systems that do not require you to run wires through your walls and use complicated ceiling mounts. A simple do-it-yourself solution can provide high quality sound and give you the flexibility to tweak the positioning of your sound devices.
Step Four: Pay Attention to the Lighting
Lighting is overlooked because some people think that a home theater should be completely dark. But that’s not true. No one wants to stub their toe when they get up to refill their drink. Here are the types of lighting you should consider:
• Overhead Lighting
• Wall Sconces
• LED Light Strips
• Fiber Optic Lighting
• Seat Side Lamps
In addition to selecting the lighting and the locations of the lights, you should invest in smart wall dimmers and switches. These along with smart bulbs can enhance the lighting of your theater area.
Step Five: Choose the Proper Seating
You want every person in the room to have a clear view of the screen. If you have enough room, you can build steps and risers to make sure that everyone can see the screen clearly. If you have even more room, you may want to use a stadium style seating arrangement with reclining chairs. This gives the home theater a comfortable cinema-like experience.
If that sounds too formal, then choose a more laid-back seating arrangement. The idea is that you want to feel comfortable in your home theater, and you want your guests to feel comfortable there as well.
Step Six: Make the Room Feel Comfortable
This could be something as simple as adding an air conditioner to the room. It will make the viewing experience comfortable during the summer months. Once you start the process of designing your theater, your only limitation will be your imagination.
Step Seven: Add Fun Colors and Decor
You cannot be overly creative when it comes to decorating your home theater. Some people use movie posters, curtains, and other items that they specifically purchase for decorating their home theater. Why not put up photographs of your favorite actors? If you put them in a glass frame, the glass should be anti-glare. Put up memorabilia from your favorite movies, like Star Trek, Star Wars, or the Marvel Cinematic Universe.
These are just a few tips that you can use to make your home theater stand out. Each one of these tips should have its own guide, and we may put them together in the future. For now, we hope this serves as a starting point in helping you to create the home theater you want.
Do you have a home theater? Are you considering building one? What tips and suggestions could you offer? Let us know in the comments section below.