Home theater (also known as home cinema) has never been more affordable. Today, for a relatively small amount of money, we 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 find everything that you need here. From simple buying advice to clear home theater setup information.
Don’t Know Your 5.1 from Your Subwoofer?
I have written buying guides to make the technology easier to understand. There are many people out there who like to make it complicated. To make it seem like rocket science.
We hear one thing from one person and the opposite from somebody else.
How about finding the best AV receivers for your system?
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, all 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.
If you’ve got a simple question, then you can get a simple answer:
What is 4K UHD TV exactly? Answer: it’s FANTASTIC!
Why do I need surround sound? Answer: you don’t – but you’ll never go back once you’ve heard it!
Well, OK, I’ll try and give slightly better answers than that!
Give me a chance – I’m only just getting started.
What I will do is explain the jargon in simple terms and tell you why it is important. Hopefully, we can also have some fun along the way. I try not to take it all too seriously.
Don’t Know Your TV Resolution from Your Aspect Ratio?
Who Is This Site For?
The aim of The Home Cinema Guide is to provide a place for less-experienced people to hang out. There are plenty of home theater technology forums with people who will laugh if you ask what an optical audio cable is.
There are enough audio-visual stores with assistants who like to impress you with their technical knowledge. But, just confuse you even more. Then, there are the ones who appear to know less than you do. It’s not easy finding what you need sometimes.
I know. Been there, done that.
I’ll try and explain the sea of acronyms and technical mumbo-jumbo in simple terms. It’s not easy sometimes, but I’ll give it my best shot.
I have worked as a sound engineer in music and TV studios. As a sound and lighting engineer in the theater. And, in audio-visual services.
However, I’m not here to try and impress you with my vast knowledge and technical expertise. Who’s got time for all that nonsense?
I’m not going to provide an encyclopedia of all the brands and manufacturers out there.
But, I will try and provide useful installation guides, 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 what I recommend.
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.
I think it’s important that everybody has 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 us a real movie theater experience.
In its simplest terms, you would have a large screen display – like a flat screen TV or projector – and a good sound system. We can’t have you listening to the sound through your TV speakers. That won’t do at all!
These days, you can improve the sound of your TV by installing a soundbar with a subwoofer. Or, you can get a separate amplifier and speakers. There’s so much choice.
For some people, the home theater experience requires a dedicated room with custom-made furniture. Motorized screens. Popcorn machine. Speakers that create the impression of a small earthquake in your house!
But, as with many things in life, size isn’t everything. I don’t discriminate here. Everybody is welcome, whatever your 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 you can show 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. However, I keep referring to home theater. Huh?
It’s quite simple. I’m from the UK, and we use the term home cinema. However, although we have people here from all over the world (hello!), most visitors have always come from the USA. So, I decided to use the term that the majority of visitors would know. How’s that for service!
Anyway, it doesn’t matter much, it all means the same thing.