Originally Posted by imagic
While watching movies on a TV in the living room can be fun, it’s a bit of a stretch to call TV and a soundbar a “home theater.” In order to have a truly cinematic experience at home, you need to replicate certain aspects of commercial movie theaters. In other words, you need a dedicated home theater!
Unlike a living room or even an AV room with an asymmetrical layout, a dedicated home theater takes viewing angles and distances into consideration, plus acoustics, and puts the viewer in the optimal position to enjoy the content. And crucially, a dedicated home theater offers complete control over lighting. ideally, not only can you make it completely dark, but in front projection installations it is also advantageous to paint the theater and dark tones that absorb light instead of reflecting it back to the screen.
Of course, the other important ingredient in a true home theater is sound. You can't have a big picture without audio to match. A dedicated home theater offers an opportunity to optimize a multichannel surround system so that the audience feels enveloped. A dedicated home theater offers the opportunity to place speakers in optimal positions. And for the most serious cinematic purists, there is nothing quite like an acoustically transparent screen that puts center channel dialogue where it belongs.
In this poll, for the sake of argument, a living room that is convertible to a home theater (optimized seating, full light control, a suitably large screen, and a properly configured surround system) is technically "home theater" but it does not automatically count as a dedicated home theater. I'm looking for people who dedicated a room. But... if that truly is what you do with your living room, and it meets all the other qualifications, then you can in good conscience vote "yes." But... it has to be that (basically) you dedicated your living room to be a home theater.
Anyhow, the simple question is this: Do you have a dedicated home theater?
Yes, it has been my hobby (I am NOT a pro installer) since my first dedicated theater in 1997 (with a Runco CRT beast)! Since then, I have designed and had installed dedicated theaters in my past six homes. (One design won 2nd place in CEDIA's national home theater competition.) As a musician who also views a large collection of blu-ray concerts, my sound budget is equal to the video budget. My newest 14 x 23' windowless home/theater completed last month includes a:
• JVC RS-2000 projecting to a 120" ambient light rejecting Dragonfly screen
• An Oppo 103, 203 and PS3
• Marantz 8805 supplying
• two 500 watt amps (Integra and Outlaw) feeding a 13.2 audio system including
• five Dynaudio mains and 8 James surrounds / back / ceiling speakers and two Sunfire subs.
I have experimented extensively through the years with acoustics including in wall and/or blown insulation, wall and ceiling panels and corner bass traps and have concluded that it's best to add treatments only after the room is up and running and one can analyze the reflections. (My current room has a full ceiling absorption panel, two 4 x 8' "first reflection" absorption panels, two floor-to-ceiling corner bass traps in front and one 5 x 5' dispersion panel in the rear between the two back wall speakers. Finally, having experienced unacceptable bass nulls and some booming in previous rooms with seating platforms filled with only batt insulation, I decided to fill my current platform with a truckload of sand and boy did that help eliminate any bass issues!