Even as movie theaters slowly reopen, social distancing is still a far safer choice than venturing out to catch the latest film release. For movie buffs, this discouraging fact means that they’ll miss the opportunity to see great movies on the big screen with surround sound. But there’s no need to downgrade your film experience. With a home theater, you can bring the movies to your house without sacrificing the amazing picture or sound quality!
Home Theater Design Flaws
Designing a home theater lets you customize your technology, seating, speaker placement, screen size, and more to your tastes. It’s the perfect solution for anyone missing a typical cinema experience. However, as you plan your home theater system, try to avoid these potential pitfalls that can interfere with your experience:
- Failing to consider technological needs
- Buying a massive viewing screen
- Making your speaker system too complex
- Delaying seats until the last minute
- Choosing a less-than-ideal room
1) Failing to Consider Technological Needs
One of the most important parts of your home theater is also the least visible: the cables. Power cords, HDMI cables, and more are essential to creating your viewing experience. Needless to say, your home theater room will need some wall renovation to accommodate all these cables. Make sure you’re using high-quality cables as well. There’s no need to spend hundreds of dollars on mediocre cords, but cutting corners could lead to problems later on.
Also, read the manuals for literally everything! Even if you’re certain you know how to run your new smart TV, consult the manual first to answer any questions you may have. Talk to your contractor about anything the manual doesn’t cover.
2) Buying a Massive Viewing Screen
We’re used to seeing huge screens in movie theaters. However, trying to install a proportionally massive screen for your home theater can detract from the experience. Remember, a cinema places the seats far from the screen so you don’t have to crane your neck looking up for the entire duration of the movie. In a home theater, you likely won’t have the room to do this. Find a TV that offers a clear, large picture without overwhelming the room.
3) Making Your Speaker System Too Complex
The size and shape of your room are important considerations for your speaker system. Top-of-the-line speakers aren’t always the best choice–in a very small home theater, they can take up too much room and fail to produce the quality sound they should in such a small space. Discuss speaker placement with your contractor for an idea of how to organize your home theater.
Pro Tip: Some types of speakers can be hidden behind thin fabric walls in your home theater! Keep the equipment out of sight and enjoy your movie.
4) Delaying Seats Until the Last Minute
Imagine completing your home theater. Everything looks great, from the bar to the TV to the decor on the wall. But when you try to add the finishing touch–the luxurious chairs–they don’t fit. This can be a common problem if you don’t plan for your chairs from the beginning of the project.
Chair placement in a theater influences your audience’s viewing angle and experience. Experiment with organizing your chairs to save room and ensure everyone sees the screen, whether that means a semicircle arrangement or building the chairs on a slope like in conventional theaters.
5) Choosing a Less-Than-Ideal Room
Finally, the room you choose for your home theater should meet the following criteria:
- Minimal or no natural light
- Minimal or no sound from outside
- Square-shaped or rectangular
- Enough square footage for seating
- Door to the side to avoid walking in front of the screen
Not every room in your house is cut out to host a home theater. Find one with ideal, comfortable conditions to watch your movies in style.
Enhancing Your Film Experience
A well-designed home cinema lets you watch your favorite movies as they were intended to be watched, on a large screen with excellent sound quality. However, poor planning can lead to problems that detract from your experience. Make sure to keep your priorities straight and build yourself the theater of your dreams.
Join the conversation to see what a completed home theater might look like.