How to drive your Interior Decorator crazy
So you love your new big screen television. Your sound system is amazing. But after the rather hefty bill is paid, it doesn’t bring that theater feeling back home as much as you thought it would. Was there some piece of equipment that was missed? Did the technician forget to sprinkle some magic dust around the room? Or is there something else going on here that is taking some of the “shiny” out of your shiny new home theater system? The problem may be all around, and you probably don’t even know it. It’s the room itself.
Wait, the room my system is in?
Probably true. Think about the room your system is in. Unless the room was specifically built as a theater room, it’s probably well lit with a few windows along at least one wall, possibly two. The walls are painted colors on the brighter side of the spectrum to help reflect the light and create a space that seems larger and more open. Ever hear the washing machine thrumming along as you hit a quiet moment of the movie. Or from the other end of the spectrum, have light fixtures rattle as some massive explosion sends shockwaves throughout the movie, and your home? All these little things are signs that you may not have picked the best room for your system.
So, does that mean I have to pay to get my system relocated? That sounds expensive!
It probably would be, but thankfully you shouldn’t have to go to such extreme lengths to reclaim the room for your desired purpose. What you can do is reconsider some decorating choices for the space. Here is a list of a few of the more commonplace problems and how to address them:
- Windows – Let in excess light which can wash out the colors of your screen. Consider getting blackout curtains or shades. Some motorized shades can even be integrated into your remote control, so that the curtains close when you are ready to watch and are open when the movies are off. The main thing is controlling the amount of excess light in the room: the less excess light, the more attention and focus is on the screen, and the better the picture looks.
- Walls and ceilings – try to use darker colors with more of a matte finish than gloss. These will reflect less light, really bringing that theater feeling home. Again, this is about controlling excess ambient light, much like the windows. Think about your local theater; very unlikely that you’d find many with brightly colored floors or walls.
- Flooring – hard floors like wood and tile have a nasty habit of reflecting sound. This will distort the direction you are hearing sounds from, and really take away from the audio end of your experience. Carpet the floors with some nice thick pile carpet on the darker end of the color wheel, and some quality carpet padding. This will not only make the room acoustically better but make it a very comfortable space.
- Noise pollution – This goes both ways, excess sound bleeding in from other rooms, and out from the theater room. This problem is best addressed when building or remodeling a room, but there are some facets that can be partially mitigated once the room is finished. Isolation pads for the subwoofers can keep the bass from bringing down the house, and additional acoustical panels can reflect or absorb sound as needed to not only bring the best possible audio experience to your room but help keep acoustical intrusions from ruining a good movie.
That sounds expensive too, isn’t it?
It’s not free, but these solutions can be far less than relocating your entire system to another room, or completely remodeling a room from the frame out. They can also add character and your own personal aesthetic to a room, as these solutions come in a variety of choices, colors, and styles. Think about your own local theater; even with the lights on, the room is probably covered in blacks, browns, and burgundy or navy blue. Keep these things in mind when making the choices for your own home theater, and there’s a pretty good chance you’ll be happier with the result. And making less serious changes like painting and blinds can keep the room more all-purpose for when you decide to sell the house or reclaim it for other uses. So, if you aren’t entirely happy with the space, consider dropping us a line and speaking to one of our sales team so we can help bring the theater back to your home.