Home Theaters: Creating the Cinema Experience at Home

January 12, 2022

Home theaters, as dedicated rooms or integrated in multi-purpose rooms, are becoming a necessity for many homeowners and families. It goes without saying that the ongoing pandemic has had a major effect on our lives, and the ways we have had to bring many experiences closer to home. Throughout 2020, there was much speculation about what our “new normal” would be and which adjustments would have lasting effects throughout our culture and society. Now, we’re beginning to settle into those new norms.

In 2020, movie theaters across the globe were shut down as a safety precaution. In response, streaming services began to offer direct-to-home releases. During the height of the pandemic, around May 2020, Variety shared a poll that showed that 70% of people stated that they would prefer to watch movies at home, even if given the option to go to a theater. Now, almost two years later – not much has changed, even with public theaters open again. The majority of people would still rather watch a movie at home, and streaming services continue to offer home releases alongside their theatrical debuts. Enter the home theater.

Control4 Home Cinema

Image credit: Control4

How to Create and Elevate Your Home Theater

Once viewed as a luxury for the rich and famous, home theaters have become much more accessible to the everyday consumer. With simple upgrades and considerations, a simple TV room or entertainment space can bring the cinema experience home, with the comfort, privacy, and safety your own house has to offer.

Start with the “big screen”

Your home may not be able to fit a 45-foot tall, but you can certainly make the most of your wall space. Televisions have come a long way and the right screen can make a big impact on your home theater. Enjoy dazzling, crisp images with Sony’s line of Full Array LED, OLED, and HDR displays. Want to go even bigger? Sony projectors can make your movie nights and game days feel even more immersive with larger-than-life 4K images. No matter the size of your room, Sony has options to bring you true-to-life color, brighter whites, darker blacks, and more.

Tip: Remember, when it comes to your TV, bigger isn’t necessarily better. Check out this guide to calculate the best TV size for an optimal viewing experience.

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Enjoy larger-than-life picture with a Sony 4K projector

Level up your audio

Immersive sound is the next step in making your home theater truly powerful. What you might miss most about the movie theater experience is the thunderous volume of sound – audio that you can feel. Not only is immersive sound possible in your home theater, but it can be customized and perfectly suited to your space. Brands like Sony and Sonos offer affordable products that offer an immediate improvement on the quality of your sound. Sometimes, even a little can go a long way. For smaller rooms, products like the Sonos Beam or Arc can bring you breathtaking sound and the immersive experience of Dolby Atmos. Their Trueplay smart technology can even measure the acoustics of your room and adjust accordingly.

video camera and family playing

Experience 3D audio with the Sonor Arc soundbar

Looking for more luxury in your sound? For true movie lovers and audiophiles, explore premium options from Klipsch and MartinLogan to hear music and dialogue so clear, you’ll feel like it’s happening in the same room as you. For a cutting-edge all-in-one home theater sound system, the Klipsch Reference Cinema Systems has you covered.

Image credit: Klipsch

Build atmosphere and comfort

Once you’ve got the essentials covered, it’s time to personalize your home theater to suit your comfort needs. This room should serve as an entertainment oasis. With some extra touches, you can take it to the next level.

Adding smart lighting in the room can really set a mood. Through automated smart lighting, you can easily customize your favorite settings to set “scenes” depending on your mood or activity. With a simple tap, “movie time” can dim the lights in your theater and turn off the rest of the lights in your home. You can even install color-changed smart lights for some extra personality.

 Nothing says “theater experience” like comfortable, cushy seating. Upgrade your chairs or couch to ensure that everyone has somewhere to put their feet up and rest their drinks and snacks.

To properly enjoy your home theater screen, you’ll need to prevent any glares or unnecessary light. If your room has windows, installing smart motorized shades is a great way to block out sunlight out at the tap of a button. You can even integrate them with the rest of your smart home system, including your lighting, to complete your movie time scene.

video camera and family playing

Image credit: Sony

Add the final touches

Consider these the cherries on top of your home theater sundae. Make your room a full sensory experience by bringing your favorite parts of the movie theater home. Set up a “concession stand” with a popcorn machine, snacks, and even a bar. Get your favorite movie posters printed, framed, and hung on the walls.

Image credit: Control4

We know, the choices and options can be overwhelming. Depending on the type of home theater experience you’re looking for, you may be faced with endless research, price comparing, designing, and logistics. Sometimes, it’s better to work with a pro.

Phoenix Systems can help you design and install the home theater of your dreams, customized with devices from Sony, Sonos, Klipsch, MartinLogan, and more.

Ready to upgrade your home?

Reach out to us at 678-566-2640 or sales@phoenixsystems.tv and a Phoenix Rep will be happy to discuss your needs and options!

Lighting is an essential and powerful element of any home’s design. When designed with intention, lighting can not only make your home feel warmer and more welcoming, but it can increase productivity, highlight your favorite areas of your house, and add character. Plus, choosing the right bulbs and fixtures from your home can impact energy efficiency. 

There are four main types of lighting you should keep in mind when designing or revamping your home. Each serves its own purpose and comes in a variety of options.

Ambient Lighting

Ambient lighting provides the overall illumination and sets the mood for a room. Typically, it floods the room with lighting from above, from ceiling-mounted lights and ceiling fans. Wall sconces can also provide enough lighting to brighten a room.

Of course, ambient lighting can come in a variety of styles which can work well in larger rooms like kitchens and living rooms. Ceiling lights can be dome-shaped flushed fixtures, or recessed lights for a sleeker and more minimal look. They can be a part of a ceiling fan or stand alone for a bold statement-making chandelier. Or, tall floor lamps can provide excellent ambient lighting, especially in rooms with high ceilings.

Accent Lighting

Accent lighting is more dedicated to style than function. With the use of directional track lights or spotlights, you can guide the eyes toward artwork or architectural elements within your home that deserve special attention.

This type of lighting can add character to your home, setting the stage for your favorite spaces and pieces to shine. Options like cove lighting can be installed near your tray ceiling or crown molding to bring those features to life.

Task Lighting

There are a lot of tasks and activities we perform in our homes on a daily basic. From cooking and preparing your morning coffee to reading, writing, and working at home. Task lighting can illuminate the necessary areas for you to do your best work. 

Under-cabinet lighting is a great way to brighten up the counter tops when you’re prepping meals, while also highlighting your beautiful backsplashes, countertop décor, coffee bar, and more. Then, when it’s time to settle in for the night, task lighting by your bedside can help you crack open a good book to wind down.

Natural Lighting

Never underestimate the power of natural lighting within your home. Sunlight streaming in through your windows can instantly make a home feel more welcoming and comfortable. Of course, while we have no power over the sun outside, we can manage the ways we incorporate it into our lighting design through smart shading.

With a variety of fabric options, you can let just enough light in to brighten your home, while also controlling unnecessary glares, or even keeping your bedroom dark and cozy.

Source: Control4

Get Smarter About Lighting

The lighting in your home should feel intuitive and comforting, not cumbersome and overwhelming. With so many lights in your house, it can help to integrate them all into your smart home system. This way, you can manage them all from a single app, or even automate them based on your routines and energy-management needs. Smart lighting systems can even make your home safer, so you never come home to a dark house, and you can deter intruders while you’re on vacation.

 Phoenix Systems offers free consultations with our smart home pros to help design and install lighting solutions that work for you.