Home Entertainment System Setup
In your downtime are you an avid TV watcher? Or, perhaps you like to listen to your favourite songs?
Depending on your budget home theatres can become expensive. But the biggest question is generally – how do you set up all the parts to get that full entertainment experience?
Try this simple 5-step path to setting up a home theatre.
Step 1 – Select the room
Where do you want to set up your theatre? Perhaps you want to use the living room or even the garage. Do you want the theatre to be separate from other rooms or do you want it to be inclusive of your main living areas?
Usually to get the full effect a large space is required.
A separate space is generally the ideal setting. You can block out the noise from the remainder of the home and it gives a little more privacy to enjoy your experience.
Step 2 – Projector and screen
Opt-in for a projector and screen solution.
The projector is mounted to the ceiling and all the cabling is run through the ceiling. So, you will also need a ceiling mount. For a professional installer, this is not a hard task.
Now that you have your projector mounted the next step is what surface do you project on to? Here are two choices. One, there is a projector screen paint that you can apply to the wall surface. This is not a bad solution that reflects the light very well. But maybe you use this wall to hang photos or use as shelving.
The other alternative is to purchase a projector screen that you can mount to the ceiling or wall. A projector screen can roll up into a small space when you are not using it.
There are manufacturers that sell manual roll-up screens and motorised screens. If you are going to opt-in for this solution then project your image onto the wall to determine the size of screen you require.
Step 3 – Sound System
The sound is an important component of any home theatre system. A good sound system can elevate your experience to a new level.
Once again cabling is an issue. In this wireless world there seem to be more wires than ever. For aesthetics, it is best to hide all cables wherever possible.
To get that true theatre sound you will need –
- Two large floor speakers set up on either side of the projector screen
- Then add four ceiling speakers. The first two should be placed in front on either side of the screen. The other two speakers can go behind the seating area. This gives a true surround sound.
- And a subwoofer
All the cables should eventually be channelled back to the video and audio receiver. This is your central command station that gives power to all your speakers. Make sure you get this right and choose the best possible arrangement.
There is a multitude of brands out there that produce excellent sound. Here a few of the top-rated sound system manufacturers – Bose, Sennheiser, Bang & Olufsen and Harman. Prices can range from $150 to $1000 and more for the best systems. The top 10 sound system makers.
Each brand will come with a full set of instructions on how to distribute the wires back to the receiver. If this is a do it yourself task YouTube generally has someone who has created a video on how to wire speakers for specific brands. All the wiring for the speakers will then go back to this receiver.
Step 4 – Mission Control
So you now have everything in place. The next step is how do you get all these parts to run from the one device?
I am imagining your theatre will have a Pay TV box, a Blu Ray player and some kind of media box. A media box typically is a computer that can stream music and videos. A pre-built PC with a dedicated graphics card should work fine.
If you operate a Plex server and know what you are doing, you can stream from that to your media box.
Connect all of your video devices to the Audio Visual receiver that has HDMI in ports and a single HDMI out cable that you will have to run to the video in on the projector.
Finally, make sure your internet connection is reliable and can handle the download capacity should you need it. Thankfully the internet is moving forward and there are numerous providers out there that deliver the necessary data space and speed required.
Step 5 – Seating Arrangements
This is more of a personal choice. Some want single-seat recliners and others want to share the experience on the couch with their loved one. Or, a combination of both single-seaters and sofa.
It all depends on the number of people that will be sharing your super home theatre system.
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