Fasten your seatbelts, A/V fans, because what you're about to hear might surprise you: these days, the average custom home theater installation can break the bank at $25,000 or more. With most of us feeling the pinch of economic recession, it can be pretty tough to justify such a hefty expenditure on high-end A/V equipment and interior design. But that's no reason to shelve your goal of having a luxury, top-notch home theater.
Contrary to popular belief, it's actually possible to indulge in small luxuries, especially the home theater-related kind, even when you're short on disposable income. Just follow our tips for the ultimate home theater fake-out, and you'll soon be reveling in a prime A/V setup that will leave your friends and family wondering, “how can they afford this?” Living the home theater high-life has never cost so little.
For years, A/V fans have labored under the belief that attaining a truly sharp home theater setup requires one to run in-wall cable. But we all know how expensive that can get. You either hire a professional to do the job for you, or attempt it yourself and risk having to shell out for sheetrock repairs. And what happens if you ever want to update? Any way you slice it, in-wall cabling is going to cost you.
That's why we're so excited about an innovative new product that's taking home theater connectivity by storm: FlatWire. Available in both audio and video formats, FlatWire gives your A/V setup the same polished, wire-free look as in-wall cable, but requires no messy cutting or expensive installations. The secret is in FlatWire's design, which, true to its name, is completely flat – paper-thin, you might say. FlatWire is simply attached to your wall with spray adhesive, lightly covered over with compound, and finally concealed with paint. All you and your guests see are smooth, uninterrupted, cable-free walls, with nothing to detract from your room décor or that HDTV.
Another deceptively budget-friendly way to enhance your home theater experience is to mount your flat-panel display on an iC® Swinging Arm Mount from Chief®. This TV mount's design combines a classic wall mount with a tilting, swiveling arm that allows you to move your screen into a wide range of positions so that no matter where you sit, you can get the best view possible.
The Chief® iC® swinging arm mount is perfect for home theater setups in multipurpose spaces or great rooms, because in situations like these, viewers can be looking on from a number of different locations, ranging from the kitchen to a pool table. Just think about how great would it be to begin a movie while snacking at the breakfast bar, and then finish it lounging on the sofa, all without ever straining to see what was onscreen.
You can't have a home theater system without cables, but for some reason, when those straggly wires are visible, it's hard to achieve that luxury vibe you're going for. That's where the Wiring Solution can help. The Wiring Solution is a conduit-like cord concealer that's designed specifically for use with high-def TVs that are wall-mounted above entertainment consoles. It spans the gap between your TV screen and the entertainment center below, so that cables running between the two are rendered invisible, instead of distracting you from an otherwise perfect view.
The Wiring Solution is only 1" thick, which gives the product a low-profile quality that helps it to disappear into its surroundings. Other features that enhance the Wiring Solution's camouflaging powers are 2 available finishes (smooth and textured) which let you match almost any wall surface, as well as the fact that it can be painted the same color as your walls.
No matter how much or how little your A/V system cost, the sight of you struggling to reach behind it won't convince any visitor of its quality. Whether your home theater components are stashed away in an entertainment center or mounted on in-wall shelves, you can access them with far greater ease, and not to mention a good deal of finesse, by installing an affordable rotating shelving system, like those in the ASR series by Middle Atlantic.
Middle Atlantic's ASR Rotating Slide-Out Shelving System gives you both in-wall and in-cabinet mounting options, so your home theater equipment can spend the majority of its time stowed neatly away. But whenever the need to plug in a cable or switch out a component arises, you can tend to things without working up a sweat or cursing up a storm, thanks to the fact that the entire shelf system can be rolled out and swiveled for rear-access in one smooth motion.