Sep 6, 2013

Getting the Most From Your Home Theater Set-Up

If you’ve been craving the ease and luxury of a home theater but can't tell a blu-ray movie from a Beyonce album, here's a basic breakdown of the elements you'll need and how they work together.

The AV Receiver

Although you can get away with plugging AV cables directly into the back of your television and from there to your stereo or DVD player, it's much easier to use an audio-video receiver. Not only do they make switching back and forth between different devices— say, DVD player, gaming system, iPod or stereo— much easier, they also amplify sound and route video signal from devices to the television.

First, decide between stereo or A/V (sometimes called surround sound). Although the first type of receiver works well for music, the second will do major heavy lifting for your home theater. Not only does it make surround sound possible, it will handle the job of switching from one input source to another with ease, which a stereo receiver won’t, says For more information about receiver specs and choices, like power, processing and more, see their Ultimate Buying Guide.


Next on the list, according to Digital Trends, is to sort out your cables. Place your receiver and television where you want them and pile on any other devices you desire in your home theater (Blu-Ray, DVD, gaming systems, stereo, record players). You’ll need audio-visual cables to connect from each device to the receiver, and from the receiver to the TV. Make sure they are long enough to wind behind the device if you want them invisible.

The TV

You probably thought the television was the most important element, and it’s certainly the one most visible to your family and friends. The main choices are between LCD (liquid crystal display) and plasma, screen size and resolution. LCD screens are better for daytime viewing, come in a greater range of sizes and are generally thinner, according to Dolby. Plasma screens, on the other hand, have a wider viewing angle so more seats in the house will get a good picture, and also have smoother motion— great for sports. If you really want to blow it out, get a front projector with a mounted screen.

The Speakers

Speakers come in a range of channels, and generally speaking, the more channels, the better the sound. They range from 5.1 to 11.1 speaker channels, and are more expensive the higher they go. Although the experience gets more realistic as you go up, a 5.1-channel system is most likely adequate for all home systems, according to Dolby. Bigger isn’t necessarily better when it comes to speaker size, however, so choose based on which fit best into the room you’re overhauling.

Cable Vs Satellite

You’ll need to decide on the television package that best compliments your viewing experience. Satellite and cable are competitive when it comes to cost, availability of channels, and extras like on-demand movies, pay-per-view shows and DVR capability. Satellites, however, offer every channel in HD, but require a dish installation as well as good weather, according to Cables are easier to install, but you won’t get every channel in high definition.


You can do it yourself or you can pay someone to come out to your house. If you've got a tech-savvy relative, they might be willing to help. If not, retailers like Best Buy offer some good deals through their Geek Squad.
Enhanced by Zemanta

Twitter Delicious Facebook Digg Stumbleupon Favorites More

Design by Free WordPress Themes | Bloggerized by Lasantha - Premium Blogger Themes | stopping spam