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Home Theater Design Tips and Mistakes

Have you recently decided to install the home theater of your dreams? Before you get started, we have some design tips to ensure the final product is exactly what you hoped for.

Work together with installers and the interior designers. Installers want the room to function and sound great. Interior designers may focus more on the design of seats and furniture placement. By working together, everyone will be on the same page and reduce the risk of miscommunication about the design. What may look best to an interior designer may not be optimal for home theater sound to an installer. By working together, both sides can achieve a beautiful and fuctioning home theater.

Furniture selection is a huge factor in any home theater. Comfort, viewing angles and sound quality should all be taken into consideration. For example, many experts recommend cloth seats vs. leather because leather tends to be more reflective. Also try to keep seat backs low. If your home theater has surround sound, you want your ears above the back of the chair. Don't make the mistake of purchasing high back chairs that will interfere with your home theater experience. Also, don't try to fit too many seats into a space. It won't do you much good to have more seating if the number of seats minimizes the overall quality of listening and viewing. Instead, decide on the number of seats first so that the screen size and projector layout reflect those number of seats.

Equipment location is important in the overall design of your new home theater. Did you know that your devices don't even have to be in the same room? Creating a separate room for equipment can reduce clutter and wireless remote devices still allow you to control the system with the touch of a button.

Audio systems should be installed first. This sets the parameters for you and the interior designer to work within. If everyone is on the same page about the balance of room design and good sound, then the end product will be that much better. If your interior designer has already designed the home theater, it is important to go back in with the installer to create a plan that incorporates beautiful design as well as screen visibility and sound.

Paint is also a huge factor in the design of a home theater. Many commercial theaters are painted with dark colors to allow viewers to focus on the screen and not the walls. If you're not wanting to necessarily mimic a commercial movie theater cave, you should still opt for a darker color in a matte or flat sheen. Semi-gloss paint may be easier to clean, but its reflective nature can be very distracting. Shy away from traditional ceiling paint as well. Opt for a darker color like flat black or gray.

Lighting control is another factor to take into consideration during the design process of your home theater. Misplaced lighting can cause some major problems so it's important to get it right. The biggest focus is making sure no lights point directly at the screen. It's also a good idea to create different lighting zones so you can keep the screen dark, but light up other areas like a snack bar. Wireless dimming products like Lutron allow you to control lighting right from your chair.

Hopefully these tips will help you create the home theater of your dreams. While these industry standards can help in doing so, the ultimate goal is to create a space that you and your family can enjoy together for many years!

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