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White House Home Theater: A Look Inside

post #1 of 53
Thread Starter 
White House Home Theater: A Look Inside
By Grant Clauser
A tour inside the White House's home theater, where President Barack Obama enjoys a 3D projector. See how the theater evolved over the years.

I'm sure being president is a hard job, so Barack Obama needs to unwind in the evening too.

Lucky for him, the job comes with a home theater, and has for many decades. Several sources note that while the first movie was shown in the White House in 1915, the theater wasn't actually built until 1942.



Here's a tour of the official White House Family Theater. You'll notice the d├ęcor has changed significantly over the years as technology improved and presidential tastes changed.

The White House theater is used for much more than just watching Walking Dead on Sunday evenings. Some official functions take place there; guests are entertained and major speeches are rehearsed.

Unfortunately we don't know what equipment is actually installed in the theater - that's confidential information. What's on the president's DVR? Does the White House have a Kaleidescape? Are they an Xbox or PS3 family?

Click here to continue.
post #2 of 53
My major interest was knowing what type of equipment was use, too bad it can't be mentioned, but by the looks of the 3D glasses which the first family, and staff are holding I bet it's not all that great. Does'nt look like allot of fun holding the glasses like that.

Interesting read about the history though.

Djoel
post #3 of 53
Interesting that Clinton and Obama are pictured with Hollywood elite while Bush entertained children. Just saying.
post #4 of 53
Its a hard job watching movies, golfing & vacations to hawaii on someone elses dime............
post #5 of 53
Quote:
Originally Posted by nelson6972 View Post

its a hard job watching movies, golfing & vacations to hawaii on someone elses dime............

+100
post #6 of 53
Quote:
Originally Posted by nelson6972 View Post

Its a hard job watching movies, golfing & vacations to hawaii on someone elses dime............

Are not all politicians on our dime .. ??
post #7 of 53
Quote:
Originally Posted by nelson6972 View Post

Its a hard job watching movies, golfing & vacations to hawaii on someone elses dime............

It's an easy shot to fixate on that type of stuff, but the security to move him from point A to point B or the fuel bill of Air Force One to visit a foreign dignitary completely trounces any expense of the actual destination. Going to Ohio could potentially cost a fortune, the Hotel he'd stay while there would be immaterial in comparison.

As for any family or friend that travel with the President, minus the security, that also comes out of the president's salary. It's always been like that.

BTW, using that logic, one could whine about any government employee being on their dime.
post #8 of 53
Quote:
Originally Posted by nelson6972 View Post

Its a hard job watching movies, golfing & vacations to hawaii on someone elses dime............

Yes, it's very easy to be President. Take any President of any party and look at their photos when they were first elected and then again when they left office either four or eight years later (in most cases). This job ages one faster than any other. Obama has aged significantly since he was elected and it's only a little over three years.

The President makes $400K of which they probably take home around $220K because it's all W2 income - none of it can be hidden in stock options, etc.
While that's far more than most citizens earn, a President could have probably made 50x that number if they had become a CEO of a large corporation. ran a large legal firm or Wall Street investment company. One of the reasons that we see such lame politicians these days (in both parties) is because most qualified people have simply decided that it's not worth becoming a politician: in spite of the rewards of power, it's simply not worth the grief.
post #9 of 53
Quote:
Originally Posted by mgkdragn View Post

Are not all politicians on our dime .. ??

Yes, exactly.
post #10 of 53
Quote:
Originally Posted by nelson6972 View Post

Its a hard job watching movies, golfing & vacations to hawaii on someone elses dime............

not for him
post #11 of 53
Look, I'm not one to turn this traditionally non-partisan sanctuary into a political debate, but let's be fair. Obama is not, by any stretch of the imagination, the most egregious presidential vacationer in recent history.

From PoliticusUSA:

"Bush spent 1,020 days of his presidency on vacation. To put this into context, John F. Kennedy spent fewer days in office, 1000, than George W. Bush spent on vacation. Bush spent 487 days at Camp David, 490 days at his Crawford ranch, and 43 days in Kennebunkport. George W. Bush spent 69 days in Crawford during his first year in office. In contrast, according to FactCheck.org, Obama spent all, or part of, 26 days of his first year in office on vacation. This was less than all three previous Republican presidents, Ronald Reagan, George H.W. Bush, and George W. Bush, but more than the two previous Democratic presidents, Jimmy Carter and Bill Clinton."

While I can't find up-to-date figures on this, CBS reported this in August 2011:

"President Obama has taken 61 vacation days after 31 months in office. At this point in their presidencies, George W. Bush had spent 180 days at his ranch where his staff often joined him for meetings. And Ronald Reagan had taken 112 vacation days at his ranch."

We all have our political leanings, and lord knows I have my issues with Obama, but attacking him on his vacations is a bit weak given his relative restraint compared to his predecessors.

RSN
post #12 of 53
Quote:
Originally Posted by RSN View Post

Look, I'm not one to turn this traditionally non-partisan sanctuary into a political debate, but let's be fair. Obama is not, by any stretch of the imagination, the most egregious presidential vacationer in recent history.

From PoliticusUSA:

"Bush spent 1,020 days of his presidency on vacation. To put this into context, John F. Kennedy spent fewer days in office, 1000, than George W. Bush spent on vacation. Bush spent 487 days at Camp David, 490 days at his Crawford ranch, and 43 days in Kennebunkport. George W. Bush spent 69 days in Crawford during his first year in office. In contrast, according to FactCheck.org, Obama spent all, or part of, 26 days of his first year in office on vacation. This was less than all three previous Republican presidents, Ronald Reagan, George H.W. Bush, and George W. Bush, but more than the two previous Democratic presidents, Jimmy Carter and Bill Clinton."

While I can't find up-to-date figures on this, CBS reported this in August 2011:

"President Obama has taken 61 vacation days after 31 months in office. At this point in their presidencies, George W. Bush had spent 180 days at his ranch where his staff often joined him for meetings. And Ronald Reagan had taken 112 vacation days at his ranch."

We all have our political leanings, and lord knows I have my issues with Obama, but attacking him on his vacations is a bit weak given his relative restraint compared to his predecessors.

RSN

And frankly no President is ever truly on vacation. To say I wasn't too fond of Bush is putting it mildly, but even when he was on vacation at the ranch they'd have meetings there, dignitary visits, etc. It's always more complicated than one sentence could ever hope to convey.


But hey! How about that theater? :-)
post #13 of 53
Quote:
Originally Posted by chirpie View Post

And frankly no President is ever truly on vacation. To say I wasn't too fond of Bush is putting it mildly, but even when he was on vacation at the ranch they'd have meetings there, dignitary visits, etc. It's always more complicated than one sentence could ever hope to convey.


But hey! How about that theater? :-)

Agreed.

As for the theater, I think some of our own AVS members have better setups.
post #14 of 53
Quote:
Originally Posted by chirpie View Post


But hey! How about that theater? :-)

I'm not impressed .. many of the HT's here on AVS trump the White House ..
post #15 of 53
Quote:
Originally Posted by nelson6972 View Post

Its a hard job watching movies, golfing & vacations to hawaii on someone elses dime............

Amen.
post #16 of 53
Quote:
Originally Posted by mgkdragn View Post

I'm not impressed .. many of the HT's here on AVS trump the White House ..

Well it was built by the goverment. Over budget and under performs. Just like the Boston Big Dig.
post #17 of 53
Quote:
Originally Posted by mgkdragn View Post

I'm not impressed .. many of the HT's here on AVS trump the White House ..

Sheesh, I was just trying to lighten things up...

And I 100% promise you that if it was TOO nice, people would be mad about that too. It's like hosting the Oscars, you aren't going to win. ^_^;
post #18 of 53
Quote:
Originally Posted by zoetmb View Post

....a President could have probably made 50x that number if they had become a CEO of a large corporation. ran a large legal firm or Wall Street investment company......

Unless you are only qualified to be a community organizer.
post #19 of 53
Quote:
Originally Posted by chirpie View Post

Sheesh, I was just trying to lighten things up...

And I 100% promise you that if it was TOO nice, people would be mad about that too. It's like hosting the Oscars, you aren't going to win. ^_^;

I would not slam it it it were too nice ..

I've always thought of the White House as being a place where we can showcase America ..

And I'm sure there are plenty of companies that would line up to provide American equipment / install free .. if they would let them disclose that info ..
post #20 of 53
Quote:
Originally Posted by mgkdragn View Post

I would not slam it it it were too nice ..

I've always thought of the White House as being a place where we can showcase America ..

And I'm sure there are plenty of companies that would line up to provide American equipment / install free .. if they would let them disclose that info ..

I totally agree on the showcasing part. But that's only because we're AV nerds. Somewhere else, someone will be mad they didn't upgrade the bowling ally. ;-)
post #21 of 53
Interesting that Clinton and Obama are pictured with Hollywood elite while Bush entertained children. Just saying.
__________________
post #22 of 53
It looks like the right wing nuts of AVS have arrived to bash President Obama while ignoring the fact that President Bush has spent more time vacationing at the same point.

How is the primary going for ya?
post #23 of 53
Quote:
Yes, it's very easy to be President. Take any President of any party and look at their photos when they were first elected and then again when they left office either four or eight years later (in most cases). This job ages one faster than any other. Obama has aged significantly since he was elected and it's only a little over three years.

The President makes $400K of which they probably take home around $220K because it's all W2 income - none of it can be hidden in stock options, etc.
While that's far more than most citizens earn, a President could have probably made 50x that number if they had become a CEO of a large corporation. ran a large legal firm or Wall Street investment company. One of the reasons that we see such lame politicians these days (in both parties) is because most qualified people have simply decided that it's not worth becoming a politician: in spite of the rewards of power, it's simply not worth the grief.

While in a serious debate a few days ago, a guy asked me "How'd you like to President of us?"
post #24 of 53
Quote:
Originally Posted by mgkdragn View Post

I'm not impressed .. many of the HT's here on AVS trump the White House ..

Just judging by the photos, it almost appears that they are going out of their way to make sure you are "not impressed". As theaters go, it meets the call and my guess is that's by design, given the high profile it would take on if it were anything more than that. Re: the Sunday morning talk shows.
post #25 of 53
I'm confused as to why we can't know what kind of equipment is installed. Receivers, amps, speakers, projector... What in the hell does what kind of AV equipment is in the theater have to do with a matter of National Security? Hey, there's a Denon in the theater room in the White House... Now I know how I'm going to break in and assassinate the president.
post #26 of 53
Quote:
Originally Posted by nelson6972 View Post
its a hard job watching movies, golfing & vacations to hawaii on someone elses dime............
+100

Seriously? Do you guys just complain about everything. No matter what the President does, he's always working and has more pressure that anyone you know. Ever see how much they age over time? It's not pretty. POTUS never gets real vacation. There's briefings every day and no issue that comes to you is ever easy or it would have been taken care of at that point.
post #27 of 53
Quote:
Originally Posted by MrEastSide View Post

I'm confused as to why we can't know what kind of equipment is installed. Receivers, amps, speakers, projector... What in the hell does what kind of AV equipment is in the theater have to do with a matter of National Security? Hey, there's a Denon in the theater room in the White House... Now I know how I'm going to break in and assassinate the president.

Truthfully, I can understand why they wouldn't want that kind of info to be broadcast too much. If the equipment is Japanese, German, or English instead of American then he takes a hit for being un-American and showing favor. If it's American then he takes a possible hit for perhaps not having the best stuff in the whitehouse. Sometimes you just can't win when you give people too much information. The bottom line guys is that our taxes pay to have people there who are trained to think through these issues and find a balanced approach that KEEPS it from becoming a national security issue. Again, I'm just judging by the photos
post #28 of 53
Quote:
Originally Posted by javry View Post

Truthfully, I can understand why they wouldn't want that kind of info to be broadcast too much. If the equipment is Japanese, German, or English instead of American then he takes a hit for being un-American and showing favor. If it's American then he takes a possible hit for perhaps not having the best stuff in the whitehouse. Sometimes you just can't win when you give people too much information. The bottom line guys is that our taxes pay to have people there who are trained to think through these issues and find a balanced approach that KEEPS it from becoming a national security issue. Again, I'm just judging by the photos

Well, there's slim pickings for good American made electronics these days. LOL! That said, I understand why a lot of government info is kept secret, but sometimes, I think they just get ridiculous and go overboard, this being one of those times. The president and government gets shit for all kinds of stupid stuff, but they'd be worried about people whining over AV equipment?
post #29 of 53
The photo shows the same red color scheme as with Laura Bush & the kids... I doubt the equipment hs been upgraded to the newest 3D stuff available (active or passive glasses, et al.... ) If it has been upraded to the latest 3D projection equipment, it is probably an old photo from when he first arrived at 1600 Pensylvannia Ave.
post #30 of 53
Quote:
Originally Posted by zoetmb View Post

.... a President could have probably made 50x that number if they had become a CEO of a large corporation. ran a large legal firm or Wall Street investment company.....

Not the current one. I had more experience working in business by the time I had graduated high school. Being a street agitator isn't a requirement on any positions in the company I work for.


Quote:
Originally Posted by zoetmb View Post

One of the reasons that we see such lame politicians these days (in both parties) is because most qualified people have simply decided that it's not worth becoming a politician: in spite of the rewards of power, it's simply not worth the grief.

And if you earn money and then become a politician you are demonized for being greedy. It's a no win proposition.
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