Tired of crowds, baby-sitters and waiting in long lines? Why buy a ticket when you can own the theater? With new technologies like High-Definition TV, Blu-Ray and Dolby Digital Surround Sound, you can have a theater room in the comfort of your own home that will rival the best cinema in town, and best of all no sticky floors! Westco can design a theater that will not only sound great but will also look and perform great. We work with some of the finest products available and our highly trained technicians understand how to properly setup your theater room and equipment and also will calibrate your system to deliver all the potential of your new Blu Ray Player or HD cable or satellite.
The goal of a theater room is to recreate the cinema experience in the comfort of your home. It requires more than just a big TV and surround sound. Whether you dedicate a room or have your theater in a family room or den, you can create an experience that your whole family will enjoy.
There are two main parts of a theater room: sound and video.
The sound is actually the most important part because it creates the most engaging effect – the feeling that you’re actually in the environment on the screen. The standard for theater room surround sound is Dolby Digital®. It is far superior to its predecessor, Dolby Pro Logic. It delivers clearer dialogue and a more realistic sense of atmosphere. It is sometimes referred to as 5.1 because there are 5 full range channels of sound plus another channel dedicated to low frequency effects, called LFE. High quality surround sound requires a Dolby Digital® processor (part of an A/V receiver or preamplifier), 5 speakers, a sub-woofer, and amplification for the speakers. The processor decodes the surround sound information from the DVD, HDTV, satellite or cable broadcast then sends the signal to the amplifier and on to the speakers. The left, center, and right front speakers reproduce on-screen action: dialog, music, and sound effects like left to right motion. The two rear speakers create the 3D effect – the illusion of space. They are essential to creating front to back motion effects like jet aircraft fly-overs. Finally, a sub-woofer (sometimes more than one) is used to reproduce the LFE: the very low sounds of explosions or earthquakes. The placement of the speakers in your room is critical to the over-all effect. So is the character of your floors, walls, and ceiling (hard surfaces reflect sound, soft surfaces absorb sound). Believe it or not, properly addressing the shape and character of your room can have a greater effect on the quality of home theater sound than buying better equipment. It is easy for professional home theater designers to predict many aspects of how a room will sound – before the system is even installed! They can recommend seating positions, speaker placement, and acoustical treatments that dramatically improve the home theater experience.
Creating film like images for a home theater can be achieved on screen sizes from 32 inches to 10 feet or more. Direct-view televisions (CRTs), rear projection televisions, flat panel displays (LCD, LED and plasma), and video projectors can all be used, but quality varies greatly among different models and brands. The best pictures are created through a combination of high resolution, accurate geometry, and proper color, contrast, and brightness settings. Having your set professionally setup is worth the money. The choice of video display depends on the size and shape of the room, ambient light conditions, viewing distance, and the seating arrangement. Most people are comfortable at a viewing distance that is 1.6 to 3.0 times the screen width.
Ease of use is key to a great home theater experience. Nobody wants to use 4 or 5 different remotes to control the various pieces of equipment. Adding a programmable remote control to simplify operation is an investment that will pay off immediately. They can be small hand held units with buttons or touch screens or large colorful touch screens that provide feedback from the system as you control it. Some can even deliver video and internet access.
Automated lighting and window coverings complete the home theater experience and it is easy to control these “atmosphere” elements with your system controller. You can literally press a single button to close the drapes, dim the lights, turn all the equipment on and start the movie.