Home theater has never been more affordable. Today, for a relatively small amount of money, you can get a system at home that looks and sounds absolutely stunning.
But it’s all so complicated, right? All the techno-babble makes your head spin? Well, it doesn’t have to be that way!
You can learn everything you need here, from simple buying advice to clear home theater setup tips.
Don’t Know the Difference Between Dolby Atmos and DTS:X?
You will find numerous buying guides that make the technology easier to understand.
Many people like to make it complicated and seem like rocket science. You hear one thing from one person and the opposite from somebody else.
You might be looking for information on choosing the best home theater speakers. Or, the exciting world of TV wall mounts!
How about finding the best AV receivers for your system?
But, you can spend weeks on the internet doing research into the right equipment. Or going into stores and coming out more confused than when you went in.
Did you know this technology is supposed to be fun?
Just a massive thank you. Your writing is an object lesson in clarity, user-friendly empathy, thoroughness and good humour. I don’t think I’ve ever read anything that deals with technical issues with such a lightness of touch. You make this kind of communication look easy, but if it were it not be so very hard to find. Thank you for the care you have taken to develop it.
Don’t Know Your TVs Resolution From the Aspect Ratio?
If you’ve got a simple question, then you will get a simple answer:
What is 4K UHD TV exactly? Answer: it’s FANTASTIC!
Why do you need surround sound? Answer: you don’t – but you’ll never go back once you’ve heard it!
Well, OK, you can expect slightly better answers than that!
The Home Cinema Guide will describe the jargon in simple terms and explain why it is important.
Hopefully, you will also have some fun along the way – because it’s not something to take too seriously.
Who Is This Site For?
The Home Cinema Guide provides a place for less-experienced people to hang out.
There are countless home theater technology forums that will laugh if you ask what an optical audio cable is.
And there are plenty of audio-visual store assistants who try to impress with their technical knowledge – but simply confuse you even more.
Not forgetting the other ones who appear to know less than you do.
It’s not easy finding what you need sometimes.
This site will try to explain the sea of acronyms and technical mumbo-jumbo in simple terms that even your 95-year-old granny will understand.
Who is behind the Home Cinema Guide?
Paul started this site in 2009 and is the main contributor and site editor. He worked for over 20 years as a sound engineer in music and TV studios – and as a sound and lighting engineer in the theater.
However, no one here will try and impress you with their vast knowledge and technical expertise. Who’s got time for all that nonsense?
You will discover helpful installation guides and how-tos, simple buying advice and relevant product recommendations. All based on a mixture of hands-on experience and research.
Now, you might not give two hoots about the product recommendations.
That’s fine. Take whatever you wish from the information here and investigate further on your own. That’s a great way to learn for yourself.
For those who just want an easier route, you should find everything you need here to put together a great home theater system.
Everybody should have access to good quality equipment. Not just those in the know.
I had to take a minute to say thank you. For a long, long time I have tried to find this info online. The info that I’d come across always assumes that you know the basics and leaves out important stuff that a total novice (like me) needs to know. Not you. This is absolutely unbelievable. For the 1st time EVER, I completely understand each one of these connections adapters that are available and the way they look and their purpose. THANK YOU A MILLION TIMES.
What Is Home Theater?
So, what is home theater exactly? Well, it can be whatever you want it to be. It’s difficult to put one definition on it.
It’s a term for having a home entertainment system that can give you a real movie theater experience.
In its simplest terms, you will have a large screen display – like a flat-screen TV or home theater projector – and a good sound system.
You really shouldn’t be listening to the sound through your TV speakers. That won’t do at all!
These days, you can improve your TV’s sound by installing a cheap soundbar with a subwoofer (check out how to choose a soundbar) – or, you can get a separate amplifier and speakers.
There are plenty of choices that won’t cost a fortune.
For others, the home theater experience requires a dedicated room with custom-made furniture, motorized screens, a popcorn machine, and speakers that create the impression of a small earthquake in your house!
But, as with many things in life, size isn’t everything. There is no discrimination here. Everybody is welcome, whatever their equipment or experience.
So, no matter if you’re just trying to find out what an HDMI cable is and if you need one – or if you want to build a setup that requires you to hire staff before showing a movie. This guide has something for everybody.
What’s in a Name?
The more observant among you may have noticed that the website is called the Home Cinema Guide – but keeps referring to home theater. Huh?
It’s pretty simple. Paul is from the UK, where they use the term home cinema. However, although there are visitors here from all over the world (hello!), most site visitors are from the USA.
So, it was decided to use the term that most people would understand. How’s that for service?
Anyway, it doesn’t matter much. It all means the same thing.