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Is there a career in home theater?

1505 Views 8 Replies 6 Participants Last post by  whiskey > work
Hello all,

I am currently looking for a new job. I'm in customer service/sales right now and while I enjoy helping people out, I can actually feel my soul dying a little each day I go into that job. Where I once had a stepping stone to greater things in a company, it seems I've lost my footing and am drowning now. But after setting up multiple TV rooms for friends and family, I found myself sitting in my own living room wishing I could add more flat panels, better sound, etc. It seems adding to my electronics has been something that cheers me up, haha
. So I'm wondering- is it possible to find a career in home theater? I love helping out my friends and family when it comes to electronics, but I must admit, I'm a novice myself. It's really only been in the past couple years that I've started this passion/addiction because that was around the time I could finally afford these things. It seems I can only fuel the addiction when I have enough money for a new toy or until family members upgrade their home theaters. I'd like to become an expert and I truly believe if I could just get my foot in the door in a related career that I could really have something special. I just don't know what's out there, what's required, or what my first step would be. Any input would be much appreciated so please feel free to comment!


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Sure there are careers available in Home Theater and we have yet see the peek of integrated home electronics, so the market is only going to get bigger for installers and professional sales/design consultants. With the integration of the PC and TV, more and more people want a "digital home" that is wired for sound, graphics, and internet in every room. Fortunately for installers and sales consultants, most people don't know what is out there and require an expert to help them find and install the right products. When it comes installing these products you need people who are familiar with their complexities, so a qualified tech is needed. A standard electrician is needed for running and installing high voltage, but you need a person who specializes in low voltage for the A/V side of things.

My company has created at least 6 new install positions in the last year. At my location, for the last 4 years we have operated with one "basic" home theater installer. However, 6 months ago we created a new position titled "Lead Home Theater Installer" who works directly with another new position, the "AV design consultant." These two people work directly with customers to design and install custom home theaters and whole home audio/vidio systems. In the 6 months since this position was created they have done over $500,000 in installations/products.

And as oddly as it may sound, as I was typing this I received an email that one of our other locations is now looking for the Lead install position. So, yes there are careers available. You should start your search at CEDIA, the certification association for AV installers.

Good luck in your search, being able to do something that you love is something that most people only dream about. Whenever, I speak with our HT installers they seem to at least enjoy it.
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I should give you some advice for getting into the business. Create a portfolio of installs that you have done. Take pictures, list components, and provide a list of references of people whom you have done installs for. Your first job may not be glamorous, (read: your first job might be running wired in attics for a more experienced installer or installing Dish Network dishes on roofs) but by putting in the time at a starting position you will the gain the experience needed to get to the next step. Also general construction knowledge is good to have too. So even as a DIY'er you should have some good experience going into an interview.
Good thread. I have a full-time career right now that I actually enjoy and that pays me well. It requires, however, pretty long hours and pretty high amounts of stress.

While I see myself in this position for a number of years, I do have a cut-off where I would like to "retire". To me, though, retirement just means changing careers to do what I want with my own business. At one time, I had a pretty romaticized view of running a bed and breakfast somewhere. Over the past few years, I have become a pretty passionate home theater guy. Most everything I do is for myself, but I run all of my own cables, have incorporated pretty complicated equipment into my rooms, and am basically teaching myself how to do it all. It is a great hobby, and I have often commented to my wife how much fun it would be to do this for others as well. (I have "consulted" on some pretty basic installs for some neighbors). But I love DIY, and currently have a very nice DIY screen and anamorphic lens. I also run an outdoor movie night in the summer months that are enjoyed by many. Lately, we have started a "movie ministry" at my church to show religious-themed movies every few months in our fellowship hall.

So when I retire, perhaps I will parlay all of this into my next career.
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Well, thanks for the input so far- it's very valuable to me. Even getting into sales could be something I really enjoy. Heck, I nearly talked my friend into buying a new flat panel tonight!
Well, I looked at CEDIA and it seems as though experience comes before certification? I would've thought it would be the other way around, but that's fine by me. So what now? Should I just search for business around my area and ask if they have entry level positions? Again, I appreciate the positive response I am getting!

Originally Posted by ghostlyshark /forum/post/12931292

Should I just search for business around my area and ask if they have entry level positions?

+1, I'd like to get into this field of work too.
I'd love to sell projectors out of a store, but there's so much to it such as how to handle returns and demo units, client base, location for such a store, and how much can you make on each unit.
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