Buying Guide: Home theater essentials

By October 12, 2012Buying Guides

For some, an HDTV and a Blu-ray player are not enough to create a top-notch entertainment center. Some would rather build their own home theaters themselves so they can have viewing experiences that rival going to a movie theater. However, in order to make this possible, take into account the factors below.

The perfect screen
TVs aren’t the only display options anymore – projectors and collapsible screens have become a popular alternative for those who have the space. Viewers want the biggest, clearest image possible, but this may lead consumers into overestimating the optimal device size for their room, which can cause eyestrain while watching for extended periods.

There is an equation to calculate the perfect screen size for a theater – multiply the distance, in inches, between the seating area and the screen by 0.84. This formula gives you the screen size that will be clearest to viewers in those seats without visual discomfort. Whether a shopper wants an LCD TV or a digital projector, he or she can find the perfect device to buy for their theater.

Surround sound
A common problem for people who are building their home theaters is placing speakers in a spot where the audio sounds great throughout the entire room. Consumers without a sound engineering background generally resort to trial and error as they find the perfect location for their sound system.

A surround sound system eliminates the need to test and relocate audio devices. However, stereo sound quality lags behind surround sound, and listeners can immediately hear the difference. Speakers that cut down on distortion have the clearest sound even at high volumes.

A media hub
A home theater would be wasted without a device to view movies and television shows. Consumers can find the best media hub for their needs by thinking about what they want to watch. For those who prefer a device that is multifunctional, game consoles such as the PS3 or Xbox 360 may be the way to go. In addition to being able to play games, most offer the ability to stream content from companies like Netflix and Amazon. The Xbox 360 offers access to ESPN 3 and live broadcasts from the sports network, while the PS3 also offers apps from the NHL, NFL, and MLB.

What is most important for you when building a home theater? Which gadgets do you think will create a better viewing experience?

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  • Daniel Neves says:

    To Newegg customer service dept. ,

    I cant get my DVR 620ku to show up on my TV screen.

    I have tried every combination.

    I even got a S-Video cable but that didn’t fix the problem.

    Now I bought a universal remote control for my TV to make sure there is nothing

    I have to turn on or turn off . Or set the TV up for receiving VCR/DVR playing video .

    Could I have a manual….my order came in but there is no ” Owners Manual” in the box of product from

    Thank you very much for shipping me a ” Owners Manual” as soon as possible .

    Daniel Neves

    14816B Nimshew Road

    Magalia, Ca. 95954


    Model DVR 620KU

    Purchase date 5/20/14

    delivery date 5/21/14

  • Hi Daniel,

    We’re sorry to hear that manual was not included with the item. We have a digital copy of the manual; we will email it to you very soon.

    Thank you,
    Newegg Support

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