If you are a gadget person like I am, you will love one of the latest trends in the homebuilding and remodeling industry. I happen to be a big fan of home theater systems. In fact, I’m the type that lives for movie scenes that contain loud explosions and surround effects. As far as I’m concerned, if I don’t think I’m a part of the movie, it isn’t loud enough. With that said home theater systems continue to be one of the most popular additions when building or remodeling a home. There are numerous companies in the Greater Houston area that not only specialize in home theater design but also work with architects, designers, and system engineers to truly design a custom Home theater experience.
When designing a home theater, it is important to adopt a plan that properly utilizes the room for its intended use.For example, if the main living area of the home is going to be your theater room, you will want a design that is dual-purpose in that it will function as a family room as well as an entertainment area. If you have the living space to create a dedicated home theater room you can be more rigid with your specifications and the room can be designed for a singular purpose.
Since I am from the school of "If it’s bigger, it’s better," I will make a few recommendations for a dedicated home theater design:
1. Create a budget and follow it. – There is no limit to what can be spent on a home theater.
2. Isolate the theater room from the rest of the home. – Insist on acoustic insulation under the floor or above the ceiling and inside the perimeter walls of the room. Your family and neighbors will be thankful for this touch and this will lead to more enjoyment of the room for all.
3. Identify your components. – Home theater equipment is similar to computer equipment in that cutting-edge technology becomes standard technology in a short period of time. Be sure that the components that you select are compatible with one another, sized appropriately for your room, and upgradeable. This will allow you to upgrade your equipment to newer technology when it is developed and do so for a fraction of the price of a new component.
4. Ensure that your electrical needs are met. – Overloading a circuit is a potential fire hazard and can cause your equipment to perform poorly and even potentially damage your components.
5. Ensure that your component ventilation needs are met. – Without adequate ventilation, your components will perform poorly and can overheat and be permanently damaged.
6. Don’t use ordinary cables. – Quality home theater components that are connected with low quality cables will have audio and video comparable to low quality components. It isn’t just a sales gimmick, cables do make a difference and they allow your theater to live up to its potential.
7. Network the system with your personal computer and provide internet access. – This will allow the potential for whole house audio or the possibility to integrate the theater equipment with a home automation system.
With a modest budget, most anyone can create a theater that will rival that of most any large cinema. As a proud home theater owner, I will say that my theater has helped me enjoy my home more than ever. And whenever I sell my home, I will have an additional selling feature that will enhance the value of my home.
Bob Birner is a Certified Graduate Remodelor (CGR) and Vice President and General Manager of Houston based Amazing Siding Corp. He also answers your home repair questions on Saturday mornings when co-hosting, “The Houston Home Handyman Radio Show” that airs from 7-9AM on
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