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Bringing a Living Room to Life

By: Corinna Underwood - Updated: 15 Jul 2012 | comments*Discuss
 
Living Room Home Entertainment System

Bringing a Living Room to Life

There are many ways that you can bring a living room to life but there is one in particular that is becoming increasingly popular these days. You can enjoy it by yourself, with your family, or among the company of friends. What is it? The answer is by setting up your own home entertainment system. It is becoming an increasingly viable and cheaper option though it may seem complicated to the uninitiated. Here's a walkthrough to get you started.

Home Entertainment Systems

Until relatively recently, the best way to watch a movie was to go to a cinema. The introduction of VCRs and later DVD players certainly made movie watching at home more accessible, but it still did not compare to the cinema's big screen and surround sound system.

Nowadays however, things are changing fast. More and more people are turning there living rooms into home movie theatres. This used to involve a projector and a screen, and it was too expensive for most people to afford. But advances in technology have given people more choices for home theatre setups, and some people find that a home theatre is quieter and more convenient than a movie theatre, and the picture and sound are great.

Surround Sound

You will need to select a surround-sound receiver. For basic surround sound, choose a receiver equipped with a four-channel Dolby Pro Logic decoder. For more advanced and realistic surround sound effects, purchase a receiver equipped with a five-channel Dolby Digital decoder. Then you will need surround sound speakers. You'll need at least five speakers to fully experience surround sound: two large front speakers, a smaller central channel speaker and two small rear or side surround speakers.

Television Screen

There are 2 main types of flat, high-definition TV: plasma and LCD. Plasma is made for larger size and a little less expensive than LCD. Plasma is the main choice for a TV in a home theatre context since LCD TVs have a size limitation.

Movies

All you need now is something to play your movies on, which will either be a normal DVD or Blu-ray. Blu-ray, also known as Blu-ray Disc (BD), is the name of a next-generation optical disc. The new format uses a blue-violet laser instead or red, hence the name Blu-ray. Despite the different type of lasers used, Blu-ray products can easily be made backwards compatible with CDs and DVDs through the use of a BD/DVD/CD compatible optical pickup unit.

The benefit of using a blue-violet laser (405nm) is that it has a shorter wavelength than a red laser (650nm), which makes it possible to focus the laser spot with even greater precision. This allows data to be packed more tightly and stored in less space, so it's possible to fit more data on the disc even though it's the same size as a CD/DVD.

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