May 31, 2011

Why is the sound on my new Flat Panel TV so bad?

Where has the sound gone on my TV?

Those who have recently purchased new flat panel LCD and LED TV’s have noticed that the sound quality on most of these new models is marginal at best.  Part of the sacrifice to go to a thin profile design is that the manufacturers have to compromise on the amplifier section and speakers in order to get everything to fit into these new thin designs.  On top of that, many of these manufacturers have moved the speakers to the back of the TV and firing down instead of being mounted on the front of the TV with speakers firing out towards the listener.  This has added to the poor quality of the sound which makes us turn the volume way up just to get intelligibility of speech.  The problem with this scenario is that we are also turning up the volume of all of the other sounds from your TV and these sounds can many times impact those in other rooms within the residence and make it unbearable for them to concentrate or accomplish their tasks.  Thus, battles and conflicts arise.   

Fortunately, we have several options from sound bars, flat panel speakers, wireless headphones and surround sound systems to take your TV watching to a more enjoyable experience.  Give our experts at Automation Design + Entertainment a call and we’ll be glad to assist you in finding the perfect match of elegance, video quality and sound quality for all of your TV viewing needs!

May 27, 2011

What is a Home Theater in a Box (HTB)?

What is a Home Theater in a Box (HTB)?

Today’s article is part 4 in our series on Redefining the Home Theater Experience!  Let’s look at Home Theater in a Box (HTB) systems.

A Home Theater in a Box System is a term that most often describes a small, compact system that packages a 5.1 surround sound speaker package with a surround receiver and sometimes even includes a built in DVD player.  These systems are a cheap and inexpensive way to get into the surround sound, multi-channel  audio world.  They are extremely inexpensive and might be installed in an apartment, dorm room or condo as they are more price orientated than design or quality orientated systems.  

Home theater in a box systems are normally very basic and are focused more are giving you lots of sound in a room versus a high quality of sound in the room.

A 5.1 speaker configuration utilizing small and compact speakers that are inexpensive is typically used in these environments to provide a very basic surround sound for the money.   Many times these systems will utilize small speakers and stands paired with a passive or low power subwoofer to enhance a movie or gaming experience for a price conscience shopper.

A medium sized flat panel LCD display or older model tube TV is most commonly installed in these applications as they offer a decent video image for the money.

Typical sources for a home theater in a box system are satellite or cable TV, possibly a BluRay or DVD player and a gaming system such as an Xbox or Playstation.

Home theater in a box systems typically come with a single remote control that can control the included surround receiver and/or dvd player.  However, additional remotes are normally required to operate the TV, Satellite or Cable Box and gaming systems.

Trust the Certified Experts at Automation Design + Entertainment to design, provide, install, train and support your next home theater in a box installation.  Their professional team of certified designers and installers will help you put together a surround system that you’ll be proud of for many years to come!

May 19, 2011

What is a Media Room?

What is a Media Room?

Today’s article is part 2 in our series on Redefining the Home Theater Experience!  Let’s look at Media Rooms:

A Media Room is the term that most often describes a multi-purpose space in a home that is utilized for many different family functions and so it is much more than a home theater….it’s a hybrid family room!  A Media Room is a version of a home theater that is typically installed in a great room or family room area on the main floor of a home.  This places it in close proximity to the kitchen where all of the entertaining and family activity takes place.  These rooms are typically well lit and filled with lots of natural light as they have walls of windows as well as patio or french doors in order to maximize the view to a lake, a pool or patio area or a scenic back yard landscape. 

Aesthetics and elegance are most often strong contributing factors to the overall design of this area.

A large flat panel LCD or LED display is most commonly installed in these applications as they offer a bright, high quality image while being elegantly blended with the design and décor of the space.

Typical sources for a media room are satellite or cable TV, a BluRay player, and some sort of media streaming device such as an Apple TV to view photo slide shows, watch youtube videos, stream movies from Netflix, Blockbuster and other online movie services as well as sharing your own custom home movie creations. 

These sources are most often installed in hidden locations such as a cabinet, closet or equipment rack in order to keep a clean and elegant look to the space while still providing you with all of today’s modern conveniences.

A 5.1 speaker configuration is typically used in these environments to provide the best sound for the money while not taking away from the beauty and elegance of the space.   Many times these speakers are built into the walls, ceilings or cabinets in order to keep a clean and elegant look to the space.

Finally, a simple and easy to use remote control is vital in bringing the entire package together.  An RF base station is often paired with this remote control in order that you can control the source equipment even though it may be out of sight in a cabinet, closet or equipment rack.

Acoustics, window treatments, furniture layouts and viewing angles are just a few of the many additional elements that bring a high quality, media room experience to your home.

Trust the Certified Experts at Automation Design + Entertainment to design, provide, install, train and support your next Media Room project.  Their professional team of certified designers and installers will help you put together a media room that you’ll be proud of for many years to come!

April 19, 2011

Great New Home Theater Speakers!

  I’d like to invite you to check out this great new package of home theater speakers that look cool, sound amazing and won’t break your bank as well! Here is what Paradigm says about them:

  We’re glad you’re thinkin’ about Paradigms! Congrats! It’s obvious you have great taste since you’re looking at the world’s #1 Speaker Brand! We’re not blowing smoke, we’ve been voted #1 twenty-one times* (the only speaker manufacturer in the world that can claim that achievement!).
If you haven’t heard ‘The Paradigm Difference’, you’re long overdue. The difference MilleniaOne speakers will make to your music and home theater experience can’t be put into words, but you’ll hear it and you’ll feel it. It’s an experience that takes you beyond five hot little speakers to a place where you’re absolutely lost in the music or movie you’re watching.
  The MilleniaOne system is part of our high-end ‘Reference’ collection … cool style and superb quality that includes ‘cost no object’ technology at below what you’d pay for any other genuine high-end speakers with this much cool stuff. Paradigm speakers put you in the moment and keep you there! We guarantee you won’t be able to keep ‘The Paradigm Difference’ a secret. In fact, we hope you don’t. Spread the word! Talk about Paradigms. After you’ve taken your new Paradigms home, BRAG about them, let friends and family listen to them too! Our mission is to rid the world of bad sound … and by ‘bad’ we mean the kind you find in a ‘five-speakers-in-box’ promo at your local big box store.
  What are you waiting for?