Home Theater

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How Speakers Work

Speakers are actually relatively simple devices. You should understand at least the basics of how speakers work before incorporating them into your home theater system. Basically, you have an enclosure [more…]

What You Need for a Basic Home Theater

A big-screen TV alone doesn't mean you have a basic home theater. The core of a basic home theater (or even a fancy media room) consists of at least three major elements — well, four, if you include popcorn [more…]

What You Need for a Complete Home Theater

If you're dreaming of a complete home theater system, then consider this comprehensive list of necessities. Essential gear for a complete home theater includes sources, receivers/controllers, displays, [more…]

How to Use Existing Audio/Visual Devices in a Home Theater

When upgrading to a home theater, you may wonder if existing audio/visual devices can be used in the new home theater. Existing audio/visual devices can work, but you lose a lot in terms of capability [more…]

How to Choose a Room for Your Home Theater

Choosing a room for your home theater plays a big part in optimizing the home theater experience. It's especially important to choose the right room or location if you have limited space. A full home theater [more…]

Should You Create a Multizone Home Theater?

The word multizone may arise when you're buying a receiver or amplifier for the home theater. A multizone system extends the usefulness of home theater by enabling you to access different audio sources [more…]

Why You Should Consider a Wireless Home Theater

Consider going wireless when planning a home theater. Setting up a wireless home theater has two big advantages: neatness (say bye-bye to the tangle of cables) and flexibility [more…]

Where to Find Information on Installing a Home Theater

When planning a home theater, you have many resources to tap for information. Magazines, catalogs, and Web sites offer details and advice on home theater systems — from planning and purchasing to assembling [more…]

How Much Does a Home Theater Cost?

The cost of a home theater can range from $199 to — well, the sky's the limit. To estimate the cost of a home theater, first consider your needs. All you may require is an entry-level home-theater-in-a-box [more…]

How to Buy Home Theater Equipment on a Budget

If you're on a tight budget, a home theater is still within reach. Budget considerations may require you to plan carefully for your home theater system. One of the great things about home theater is that [more…]

Installing a Home Theater: DIY or Hire a Pro?

Installing a home theater? Do it yourself (DIY) or hire a pro. Lots of home theater setup is DIY-easy, and you can hire a pro to complement your work. Of course, installing the home theater by yourself [more…]

What the Numbers Mean in Surround Sound Terminology

Much of surround-sound terminology boils down into numbers such as 2.0, 5.1, and 7.1. These surround-sound numbers sometimes refer to the playback system’s speaker configuration and sometimes to the audio [more…]

Two-Channel Sound vs. Multichannel Surround Sound

Rather than two-channel sound, a home theater boasts multichannel surround sound. Two-channel sound gives a left and a right speaker effect, while multichannel surround sound adds a front center speaker [more…]

How to Manage Bass Sounds in a Home Theater

Bass management is how your home theater manages low-frequency sounds. Better A/V receivers and other controller devices have several options for managing bass sounds in your system. [more…]

What Is Dolby Surround Sound?

Dolby has been enhancing sound for several decades, but the true mother of all surround-sound encoding schemes in home theater systems is Dolby Surround Sound [more…]

Dolby Pro Logic Surround Sound

A Dolby Pro Logic home theater system includes four channels and five speakers of surround sound. Dolby Pro Logic is a matrixdecoded multichannel surround sound system, meaning that it turns two-channel [more…]

Basics of Dolby Digital Surround Sound

Dolby Digital is an all-digital surround sound format that handles audio compression, so it’s available only for digital content. DVDs and HDTV use Dolby Digital [more…]

Dolby Digital Surround EX

Dolby Digital Surround EX home theater systems include rear surround speakers that are made possible by an additional surround channel. This digital Surround EX channel drives the center rear surround [more…]

Digital Theater Systems (DTS)

Digital Theater Systems (DTS) has invented a lineup of surround-sound encoding schemes. As with Dolby Digital, DTS Digital Surround provides 5.1 channels of digital audio. However, DTS uses less compression [more…]

Dolby Digital Plus Surround Sound

Dolby Digital Plus surround sound is an improvement on the super-popular Dolby Digital/Dolby Digital EX system. Dolby Digital Plus improves on Dolby Digital and EX by [more…]

Dolby TrueHD Surround Sound

The Dolby TrueHD surround sound format supports up to 13.1 channels of surround-sound goodness, like Dolby Digital Plus. However, Dolby TrueHD is a lossless format. That means that the sound being encoded [more…]

DTS-HD Surround Sound

The folks at Digital Theater Systems (DTS) have developed a lossless surround-sound format known as DTS-HD Master Audio. DTS-HD is available on Blu-ray discs and players, and can provide [more…]

Does Your Home Theater Need a CD Player?

Although you definitely want your home theater to have a device that can play CDs, you may not need (or want) a traditional CD player in your system. A DVD player, which is an absolutely must in a home [more…]

How to Choose a CD Player

If you've decided to use a standalone CD player in your home theater, which one do you choose? If you already have a CD player, go ahead and use it. The following list highlights some features you might [more…]

Tips for Mounting a Video Display

So you've bought a mount for your display and you're ready to install. Before you mount that display in your home theater, take a look these tips to ensure a safe, effective installation. You'll get the [more…]


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