We used to talk about the wow factor a lot in the home theater biz–that intangible that makes friends’ eyes light up when they see, hear, and feel the room for the first time. We don’t talk about it so much anymore, what with all the design-oriented solutions that have sort of taken over. But that wow factor is still important to create a truly cool room–a real home theater not just a living room with a system thrown in it with reckless abandon. Here are a few ways to get the sexy back into your own home theater.
1) Surround sound an absolute must. Let’s not kid ourselves, shall we? Surround sound is a must-have if you really want draws to drop. Every time I play the old THX surround sound clip (video below) that comes before certain movies through my M&K speakers, people inevitably get goosebumps. This is still one of the most effective surround sound demos in my opinion.
2) Pump up the bass, yo. While it’s not the most neighbor-friendly of components, a good subwoofer or two can really puts the low-end rumble and thunder into your home theater, helping to win you friends and influence people. With the proper soundproofing and acoustic treatments, you can perfect bass response while keeping subs from waking up the baby.
3) Hello backlighting! Here is a sneak preview of my new reference screen, a Screen Innovations Black Diamond Zero Edge 110-incher with built-in LED backlighting. I’ll be posting the review of this screen on Friday. For now, I’ll let the picture speak for itself. Pretty dramatic, right?
4) Trick it out. What ever happened to the good-old popcorn machine or candy counter? Too predictable? I think not! Why not have fun in the home theater? Isn’t that what it’s all about, gosh darn-it? Why not a star ceiling? Why not a lighted marquee? Go for the gusto. Don’t be shy.
5) As Marky Mark would say, feel the vibration! A tactile transducer is an unsexy word for a super awesome effect that literally vibrates your seating along with the onscreen action. Clark Synthesis Transducers for example, go underneath your furniture and shake and throb at the appropriate moments.
So, what are you waiting for? Don’t be a home theater snob, embrace these old-school techniques. They will make your home theater more like a theater, garner plenty of oohs and aahs, and create a more festive environment.