Not long ago, we posted an article on how to create the perfect home theatre. Whilst it is important to make sure you have everything covered, what is more important is to learn what not to do. From our years of experience, we come across clients making the same mistakes over and over again. We often see them focus too much on certain elements that may seem important on the surface, but when it comes to usability, some essential things are missed. We’re here to share with you, before you design your dream home theatre, 5 mistakes not to make. So here goes…
(1) Having a screen that is too small
Some home theatres we have seen use a TV screen that is similar in size to perhaps the one in the lounge room or the bedroom. This results in thousands of dollars wasted in creating a home theatre that sits there, unused.
You want your home theatre to be different, to offer you a kind of experience you can’t get in any other room of the house. You want to create an environment that focuses on offering an immersive experience, one that replicates a true cinematic feel. Otherwise, you’ll find that most of the time you’ll feel that it is just easier to plonk yourself down on the couch and switch on the TV instead.
(2) Skipping the screen altogether
Many of our clients consider skipping a projector screen and simply using a white wall. It is a huge and very common misconception that a screen is simply a white surface, easily replaced by any other white surface in the house.
Firstly, projector screens have a special coating that improves its reflective properties. Walls are not coated with this resulting in an image that is not nearly as bright as one that is projected onto a screen.
Secondly, a wall may appear smooth and flat at first but most walls aren’t as smooth as they appear. The tiny bumps or imperfections on a wall will cause tiny shadows to appear on the projected image. This will cause the image to be less bright and crisp overall.
Also, using a projector screen means that you get a proper squared off border so that the screen area is properly defined and looks more finished and polished as a result.
Fun fact: Have you ever heard of a grey projector screen? This is an clever design that offers you increased contrast in rooms with more ambient light. Choosing the right screen for your room is essential to achieve the best possible definition for the projector that you have selected.
(3) Not having a control system
This is probably the most common mistake people make when designing a home theatre. They often focus all their decision making process and money on equipment and fail to invest anything into a control system. A control system is something that controls every single piece of equipment you have in your theatre room and ties everything together. It ensures that you experience a perfect cinema experience every time you’re in that room without any confusing remotes or complicated processes.
A control system will mean that at the touch of a button, anyone young or old finds the system a breeze. E.g. You press “watch Blu-ray” on the remote and the projector screen will roll down, the sound system will turn on, the lights will dim, the Blu-ray disk starts playing and all the settings on the amplifier will be set to the correct ones for the perfect cinematic experience. People often find that without a control system, it is just “too much trouble” to watch a movie.
(4) Playing low quality content
Don’t waste the thousands and thousands of dollars you’ve spent on equipment for your home theatre by not having access to high quality video sources. Far too many people are not taking advantage of their sensational systems by not having access to 4K content. We highly recommend you invest in a Blu-ray player or a 4K Netflix subscription at minimum. The experience of watching a movie in exceptional quality is like no other and will make you fall in love with your home cinema even more!
(5) Not controlling ambient light
When it comes to projectors, light coming in from windows and doors is a home theatre’s worst enemy so it is ideal to minimise it as much as possible. You can target this problem in two ways: (1) By choosing a room that is already dark to begin with e.g. basement, attic etc. (2) Installing blackout shades or blinds on your windows. Even the colour of your walls can affect the image quality, so we often recommend painting the walls of a dedicated cinema room a darker colour to completely capture your viewer’s attention and minimise any light reflection.
Avoid these 5 mistakes when designing your cinema room and you’ll have yourself a truly spectacular and immersive movie experience. As a bonus, you’ll be able to enjoy the experience with such ease and convenience. We love home theatres because you can honestly transport yourself into a whole new world within your own home and just relax and enjoy!