A night at the movies has always been a popular thing to do and it is now much easier and just as much fun to recreate that movie theater experience in the comfort of your home.
There are so many ways to create a theater in your own home, including a great way to enjoy an outdoor movie experience where friends and family can relax under the stars on their bean bag loungers while being entertained by a classic “popcorn” classic.
Here are some suggestions on how to immerse yourself in a movie moment without having to head to a local theater.
Outdoor screenings are a big hit
Before we take a look at how you can create the perfect theater experience indoors it is well worth talking about how your outdoor space can be used to host a memorable movie night.
The cost of a projector has fallen greatly as the home-movie revolution has taken off and you should be able to find a decent projector that can cope with outdoor conditions. Invest in one that offers at least 3000 lumens and it could prove a great investment when you host regular outdoor or indoor movie nights.
The screen can be a white sheet and you can easily make your own with some blackout lining, so the only major cash outlay is the projector.
Lay out loads of blankets and beans bags and your audience will be ready for an awesome outdoor cinema experience.
Now here is a look at what you need for an indoor home theater system.
Choosing a room for your home theater
The size and available space in your home will obviously dictate where you can install your home theater but there are a few general requirements that you should try and stick to if you want it to look and sound as good as possible.
A primary consideration is whether you have enough space in your home to dedicate a room specifically for your theater or whether it will have to be a space that is shared.
The relevance of this question is that you can determine how much seating you can put in the room and how the layout and setup will work.
If you can dedicate a space in your home as a “theater room” it will allow you to arrange screen and speaker placement with greater precision.
Size and shape
If you have a choice of possible rooms that you want to convert into a theater it should be noted that a space that is more rectangular than square in shape will normally work better for viewing comfort and seating options.
If you can use a room that is rectangular rather than square, pick this one.
Get your screen angle and viewing seating configuration right
The temptation is often to go for the biggest screen possible for your theater room but there is often a fine line between going too large or too small, and if you get it wrong it will have an impact on your viewing experience and comfort.
You want a viewing angle that is no smaller than forty-degrees. If you are tempted to go any larger it will be like the front row of the movie theater and might feel too close to the screen, but any smaller and it might end up feeling a bit underwhelming and just like watching a normal TV.
Does it have to be a projector?
A classic dilemma when setting up a home theater is whether it is better to buy a projector or spend your money on a TV.
The quality and size of LED TV’s are amazing these days and the picture quality you get with a high-end TV is impressive, but so is the price tag for investing in the latest technology.
You should find that there is no need to spend that sort of money to get a great home theater setup and a projector will often cost a lot less and deliver a decent quality image that is well over 100 inches, which will beat most TV’s.
Think about acoustics
It is not just the picture that delivers a movie experience in your home, the sound system and acoustics will make a big difference to your enjoyment too.
Again, you don’t have to spend fortunes on a top-of-the-range sound system. Instead, focus on getting the acoustics in your room as good as possible and that will allow your sound system to deliver the best possible performance.
A key point to remember is that surfaces should be absorbing the sound rather than reflecting it.
Putting some acoustic tiles on your ceiling or installing a second layer of insulation will ensure that your room becomes a proper home theater with great acoustics.
If you are concerned about the aesthetics of installing acoustic or carpet tiles on your walls and ceiling you could consider upholstered walls, which add a sophisticated look and tick all the right boxes in terms of absorbing sound.
Don’t forget to position your speakers
Having got every other part of the planning right you don’t want your theater room to fall short of your expectations because you didn’t get the speaker configuration correct.
The majority of home theater systems use a five-speaker setup.
This configuration involves three speakers positioned left, right, and center of the screen, followed by two behind your seating. The center speaker will be the subwoofer, which delivers that thumping bass that goes through you when the action gets going on the screen.
Finally, try not to be tempted to buy cheap connectors and cabling and is this will often prove detrimental to the quality that your sound system is able to produce.
You don’t have to be a techie to create an awesome home theater setup and you don’t have to have a massive budget to put together a system that will provide hours of indoor or outdoor movie entertainment.
In fact, you might find that your home becomes a popular destination for friends and family who can’t wait to enjoy the latest movie with you in comfortable home surroundings.