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By Russell Neal
A home theater system combines the highest professional grade equipment with a custom configuration built according to the specific dynamics of an individual home. While less expensive retail equipment offers a tempting do-it-yourself savings, home theater represents one domain that requires maximum investment for full enjoyment and satisfaction. Professional grade televisions, projectors, speakers, and audio distribution systems feature engineering specifications unavailable in retail grade equivalents. A home theater system made from professional grade components can actually surpass the quality of public theaters if a professional firm familiar with home automation, architecture, design, and lighting installs it correctly. Award winning companies such as ILD in Texas possess such a knowledge base and the multidisciplinary skill set necessary to configure a home theater system that works in harmony with its environment and congruently reflects the tastes and expectations of the homeowner.
The main drawback to self-installed home theater systems is the inability of retail grade components to exactly match acoustics with the size and configuration of a room’s interior architecture. Even if the end user understands the basics of interior design, wall and ceiling material, and the relationship between furniture layout and sound reverberation, the chances of producing a level of sound that rivals movie house acoustics are slim. Retail components of home theater systems are engineered for mass production and sale. Manufacturers simply do not use their best design work or top-grade components in mass-produced equipment. While skillful self-installations can on occasions produce a close equivalent to public theater, sound produced by retail components will never completely blend with its environment because the fine tuning necessary to eliminate muffling, reverb, and acoustical dead spots simple does not exist at this level of technology. However, when a multi-specialty distributor such as Illuminations Lighting builds a home theater system with any number and combination of literally thousands of possible commercial grade components, it becomes not only possible to equal public entertainment, but to surpass it altogether.
There are a number of reasons why a custom-designed home theater system can do this. First, almost every major cinema chain features identical facilities with identical equipment. While the technological capabilities of this equipment are readily apparent by the long lines and large crowds that attend public film showings, there is little, if any, uniqueness to a particular theater or its specific equipment. The exact opposite holds true for a professionally installed home theater system. Engineers can actually assist a homeowner in choosing the ideal location to set up the home theater system. Factors such as ceiling height, wall and ceiling material build, and even the angles and positions of corners and large decorations play a major role in how sound travels and reflects in a room. Lighting represents another critical factor that requires a professional eye to precisely adjust. Few rooms in modern homes are windowless, so limiting natural light and creating special lighting effects requires not only commercial grade lighting equipment, but also lighting automation programming techniques available only through a team trained in configuring this form of technology.
About the Author: Illuminations Lighting and Design multi-specializes in five major disciplines and continues to rise as Texas’s premier leader in in home theater and home lighting control design. Visit illuminationslighting.com/home_theater_systems.htm and illuminationslighting.com for more information on custom lighting systems for homes and offices.
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