Tips for Choosing Quality Home Theater Loudspeakers

When you think of the term “home theater” what do you think of immediately? If you’re like most people, it’s probably the bright, vibrant, larger than life video screen. While this component is certainly essential, a first class audio system is just as important to the overall home theater experience.

By audio we mean a surround sound system. A surround sound system consists of an A / V receiver, multiple speakers, and at least one subwoofer and divides the audio soundtrack of a movie into six or more discrete channels and delivers those channels to the appropriate speakers and subwoofer. . It’s an effect that makes you feel like you’re in the middle of the on-screen action. The audio is dynamic, stimulating and realistic – just like a home theater should be.

As the final link in the audio chain, high quality home theater speakers are a must and options vary widely. Starting with the design of the speakers, you can buy freestanding speakers (also called box or cabinet speakers) that can stand on the floor or stand on bookshelves and other furniture, or models that are designed to be flush with the surface of the walls and walls are countersunk ceiling. Neither style is better than the other; Though some home theater designers would argue that freestanding speakers are superior in terms of audio quality.

Over the years, the main distinction between the two types has centered more on cosmetics than audio quality as the performance of the built-in products continues to improve due to improvements made by the manufacturers of the technology and a better understanding of the home theater designers in correct installation techniques. “A home theater designer can rival an in-wall surround sound system with a freestanding surround sound system if it’s installed correctly,” said Mark Casavant, vice president of product development for the Klipsch Group.

However, make sure that you audition at least some selected speakers (both free-standing and built-in) before deciding on a system. Visit a showroom at a nearby home theater design office and listen to both movies and music to gauge your preferences. Be sure to compare speakers that fall within your budget. While overpriced speakers can sound amazing, you can find plenty of solid speaker options in every price range.

As quality is less and less dependent on the space required (in the wall or free-standing) of the speaker, cosmetic design has become a decisive factor for many home theater enthusiasts. There are two schools of thought: on the one hand, show your investment with an architecturally eye-catching loudspeaker that is left outdoors, or on the other, merge it with the construction of the theater so that there is no visual conflict with the interior design. There is no right or wrong; just your personal preference. Note, however, that depending on your situation, it may be easier to install free-standing speakers than installing multiple speakers in the ceiling and walls.

Home theater speakers come in a variety of cosmetic styles: ceiling, wall, and free-standing speakers.  All of them can produce great audio when properly calibrated.Home theater speakers come in several cosmetic styles:
in the ceiling, in the wall and free-standing. All of them can produce great audio when properly calibrated.

In addition to quality and cosmetics, you need to determine the number of speakers to install. This can vary depending on the size of your room, your budget, and the sophistication of your listening style. Basically, a surround sound system should contain five speakers and a subwoofer called a 5.1 system. From here you can add a subwoofer, expand it to a 7.1, 9.2 or 11.2 system (technically, the LFE channel is always .1 regardless of how many subwoofers you use). Even go to the Ex-treme with a 12.6 setup … or anywhere in between (the bigger the home theater, the more speakers are generally needed). Just make sure that the receiver or processor you choose today is able to handle the speaker arrangement you have now … and possibly will in the future. The latest in surround sound technology, Dolby Atmos, can deliver sound almost anywhere as it is not limited to a set number of channels. The effect is complete immersion so you can’t go wrong by at least laying the wiring to support these speakers with height effects.


With the flexibility of surround sound systems today and the continued advancement of technology, it is always a good idea to run cables for additional speakers. Who knows, you may want to upgrade from a 5.1 system to a 7.1 system. If you really want to stay on the cutting edge, go for the emerging Atmos technology, which requires placing multiple speakers above your head.

The physical placement of surround sound speakers has also become much more flexible. Although there are formulas that give strict positioning recommendations, home theater designers now have tools that allow for non-ideal, asymmetrical positioning while also providing an experience where the entire room is covered in surround sound information, says Casavant.

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A great audio system is just as important to the overall home theater experience as the video screen.

Posted by Electronic House on Tuesday Sep 22nd, 2015

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