It’s been months in the making, but here we are, the brand new AVS Forum. Welcome! With a shiny new coat of paint and a slew of new features and functionality made possible by the Huddler community platform, this is the biggest upgrade AVS has seen since the AVSForum.com site was launched back in 1999. We hope you like what you see, and please pardon our dust as we listen to your feedback and continue to improve things in the coming weeks.
While change can be disconcerting and scary, this upgrade is significant on a whole variety of levels, and I should stress that we did not make this move without a lot of careful thought and planning. Hosting a community as large as AVS is no easy task (you wouldn’t believe the frequency of hack attempts we had to fight and the number of patches we had to implement to keep the site running). We thoroughly searched for a platform that could truly meet our needs, and we found that in Huddler. Not only for what the platform offers today, both in terms of functionality and stability, but what it represents down the road as we continue to improve and evolve AVS. Huddler is deeply committed to AVS, and that’s extremely important to the future of the site.
It was also incredible challenging to make changes to the site’s design – mainly because so many of you have so graciously made this place your Internet home and have gotten used to everything exactly as it was over the years. But again, we felt it was necessary – and about time! -- to bring the site up to today’s standards. We tried carefully to preserve the AVS experience while giving the site a slick new look that’s easier to navigate. We hope you agree that it’s an amazing step forward.
But bottom line, everything you see here today is in the interest of making sure AVS remains the best community on the web for you, the home theater enthusiast. Without you, AVS would be nothing. And we deeply appreciate your ongoing support – especially through a change as major as this. Thank you!
But while I have your attention, I’d like to give you a sense of some of the features of the new site, though there are so many enhancements that you’ll discover for yourself as you use it.
The Homepage: Although most members are eager to jump right in to the forums, we’ve set out to make the homepage an exciting new place to see amazing content as well as all the recent forum activity. The strength of AVS lies in the community, and we'll be working on new ways to surface the best content on the homepage so it can be seen by everyone.
Thread Pages: As you’ll see, the thread list and thread pages aren't too different from what they were before, expect for better looking. We worked hard to keep the core AVS experience as consistent as possible. I’m sure you don’t mind.
Reviews: As you all know, member reviews are a key component of AVS. Now, I know we have tried review systems in the past and they didn’t really live up to our expectations. Well, we feel that on the new platform we finely have a system that fits very well. Also, there are new product pages that aggregate details, reviews, thread discussions, and more about a product all in one place. Threads will always be an important part of the review process, but we can also use the new product taxonomy (the classification system) to do so much more.
Galleries: Along with regular uploads, there are now community albums where people can collaborate on building out galleries like “My Home Theater” or “My DVD Collection” for the rest of the community to see. The new platform also has new ways to discuss and share these photos across the site and view galleries by popularity.
Articles: Sometimes the best content on AVS was really hard to find, so we’ve been working on new article templates for things like Owner's Guides, Tweaks and Tips, and a whole bunch of other content ideas we have in mind. Currently, there are a few helpful FAQs and guides to using the new platform under the "Site FAQs" articles section.
Lists: In the past, lots of members would show off their gear in threads, often by using their signature files. On the new site, however, people can showcase their theater components by putting together actual lists using the product database and even see theaters with similar components. We intend to do lots more with this down the road.
Mobile: We're also working on an entirely new HTML5 solution to go with the new site. It’s not live for the launch, but you can expect it shortly after. Designed from the ground up with power users in mind, this is definitely something to be excited about.
Those are just some of the features I’m pleased with, but honestly, there’s no substitute for using the site for yourself and playing around with everything. But do us a favor and be patient with us – we know there are bound to be some bugs and things that got missed in the transition, and we’ll be working as fast as possible to address them. Then, once you’ve had some time to get to know the new site, please give us your feedback – we want to hear it, good or bad. Because while we firmly believe this is a major step forward for AVS, we won’t truly be proud of our work until you, the community, tell us the same.
We welcome your feedback in this forum... Platform Launch and Discussion