Previously we covered entertainment rooms revolving around gameroom furniture such as billiard tables and dart boards, but increasingly, people are building entertainment rooms around a home theater or media center.
With that in mind, we put together a simple guide to setting up a home theater while integrating art pieces into your space. Building an awesome home theater or media center involves more than just throwing a big wad of cash at your local electronics dealer. While we won’t be covering the nitty-gritty technicalities on setting up a media room, we will share a few tips on picking a TV and arranging and decorating your space.
Planning a Home Theater system
Ample screen size: The screen should be large enough so everyone in the room can back up and view it from a good angle. Not sure what size to buy?
You want a horizontal viewing angle of 40-degrees from your seats. To achieve this, simply use this formula: Measure the distance of the screen to your main seat, in inches. Multiply that by .84 and you’ll get a diagonal screen size (Distance x 0.84 = Screen Size).
For example, if your seat is 72 inches from the screen, the formula would look like this: 72 x .84 = 60.4. So the maximum recommended screen is 60 inches. Of course, this is only a guideline and you can go bigger or smaller depending on your budget and preference.
Sound is more than half the experience. Many people cut their budget short and focus mostly on the screen. Instead, you should betaking your budget and dividing it into three equal parts for the screen, sound and room. No one jumps at a picture of a gun, they jump at the sound. Selecting and setting up a good sound system in your home is a fairly long process which we won’t be covering in this guide, but you should set aside an equally respectable amount of money for your audio as to your TV screen and décor.
Setting the mood
Control the lights and relocate distracting lights or reflective surfaces. Remote control dimmers on lights are ideal, so when the room isn’t in use, you can turn up the lights and showcase the artworks you’ve decorated it with.
What you sit on is just as important as where you’re sitting – your sofa or seats need to support your spine whilst providing comfort. If space allows, explore seating arrangement that’s off the wall and center of the room. If seats are flushed to the walls, they interrupt the path sound travels in most rooms. Having the seats are centered in the room and off the wall also allows the room to also double up as a secondary living room and entertainment space so ensure its a space you wouldn’t mind spending time in outside of watching a movie.
Eliminate visual distractions like bright reflective surfaces near the screen.
Don’t overdo dampening. You don’t need to run out and buy acoustic treatment. Furnish your space with your favorite artworks, bookshelves and furniture, which will absorb and reflect sound in a way that’s fine for most people. Don’t plan on a completely empty room either, as it can act as an echo chamber.
Your entertainment room is probably not always going to be in use as a theater. So hang up some artworks on adjacent walls to serve as both sound dampeners as well as conversation pieces when the room is not being used for movie screening. Some artwork, such urban photography, are much more personal and will give your home theater a timeless and classy feel, as opposed to regular movie posters, which can get dated and feel commercialized.