Choosing The Right Screen
Consumer technology is an interesting thing. The accessibility of equipment and materials on the technology leads almost everyone to believe they are an expert in the field. There's something about consumer electronics that makes everyone feel they are qualified to present an opinion on the subject.
Unfortunately, this can lead to the development of some seemingly intuitive and widely held beliefs that turn out to be entirely inaccurate. Consider these three myths, often perpetuated by well-meaning, but misinformed 'experts.'
The Bigger the Better
To hear most people talk, the size of your television is a real determining factor of the quality of your home theater. If you don't have a very large screen in the mix, many will automatically assume you have assembled a sub-par system. The truth of the matter, however, is that a smaller screen can do the job in many circumstances.
As a general rule, one probably does not want to use a screen less than twenty-seven inches in size. It is possible for a screen to be too small, after all. Twenty-seven inchers may not be enough for every circumstance, but in many settings they are more than adequate. It all depends upon where people are sitting relative to the screen and upon the quality of the television.
A bigger screen may seem more movie-like, but in many situations they fail to provide an optimal experience. In order to effectively us a big screen, one must have adequate space and have a good seating plan in place. Older projection televisions, no matter how large the screen provide a poor viewing experience for those looking at the screen from an angle.
If you have the space and can afford a high-quality large screen, you may want to do just that. However, if your resources limit you to a lesser expensive (and lower quality) large screen option, you will be able to experience a better home theater experience with a smaller screen-and you won't miss one bit of the action, either.
You Must Be Rich
Home theaters are often considered a rich person's toy. Many people will tell you that a home theater investment doesn't make a lot of sense unless you have a significant amount of disposable income. A home theater just isn't within the reach of the Regular Joe, they argue.
Nothing could be farther from the truth. Although home theater was, in their infancy, a diversion for the wealthy, today's systems can be very affordable and can fit well within the budget of most households.
Sure, you can spend a fortune on a top-of-the-line home theater designed to completely replicate the cinema experience. However, you can bring much of the excitement and quality of a movie theater into your home at a relatively inexpensive mark, if you shop wisely and construct a system that meets your actual needs.
Bargain shopping, the growth of 'home theater in a box' options and the overall decrease in price for consumer electronics makes buying a home theater economical. In addition, these systems can be fairly cost-effective when one considers the alternative expenses attendant to movie going at the multiplex. No one will charge you ten dollars for a small soft drink and stale popcorn at home, after all.
Size is Everything
If your speakers don't tower over your head and take up a great deal of space, there are many who will tell you that your home theater system just isn't up to task. There's a widely held belief that the key to a great sound system for a home theater is choosing huge speakers that can shake a building.
This thinking probably stems from experience with older technology. Once upon a time, bigger speakers were the only ones available that really packed a punch. However, as with all technology, speakers are shrinking. There are systems using small cubes that can fill a room with high-fidelity sound as capably as the tower speakers of earlier generations.
There are some large speakers that are an audiophile's dream and that can really blow one away. For those of us who don't want to see our homes become mock-ups of a stadium concert stage, however, there are some great options in smaller speakers that deserve a close look when putting together a home theater system.
Don't buy into the myths. Instead, look at the facts regarding today's home theaters. You will be glad you did