What To Look For In Home Theatre Speakers

Home theatres are becoming commonplace in households around the world. Offering a great place for a family to get together to view movies, television programs and even home videos, these rooms are not your typical living rooms, however. When maximum viewing potential is put into the mix of requirements, these rooms are meant to bring the movie theatre experience home and in a big way. With this in mind, some people go to great pains to ensure everything is of the best quality from the seating down to the home theatre speakers.

Not everyone can afford to buy the top of the line in everything, however. Fortunately, there are some places where corners can be cut without greatly impacting the overall viewing experience. The home theatre speakers are one consideration that can be found on a budget and still perform quite well. Shopping for the best within a budget will be important to make sure quality is king in a set that runs $200 or $2,000.

When looking for home theatre speakers, it’s wise to do the following things:

Budget: Setting a budget is a first and foremost concern. Since home theatre set ups can run into the thousands, having a dollar amount for the home theatre speakers can really assist in the process of locating the best for the family in question.

List out requirements: A lot of bells and whistles can be found even on a budget, so go ahead and list out what features are important for your personal set up. If Dolby is a must, put that down. If having a master control device included with the speakers will be necessary, jot that down, too.

Look at makes and models: With desires for home theatre speakers clearly stated and a budget set, it’s time to start researching different makes and models. Start out by finding all those that fall into the right budget range. Then weed out different designs based on the desired features. When a few potential winners are found, it’s time to hit the books, so to say.

Look at what consumer reporting agencies or magazines have said about particular makes and models and even seek out reviews from past users. The important things to consider are sound quality, warranties and overall performance. A $300 set of home theatre speakers might just happen to have better consumer reports than that $2,000 set that looks fantastic.

Home theatre speakers purchased in sets should include at least five separate speakers to create the surround sound effect. A main control device might also include a stereo receiver, but the important thing is that it takes input from the projector and or DVD player. Make sure a minimum set up is included and that past user reports are good and almost any speaker system that’s set up correctly will sound a thousand times better than a regular television set.

Shopping for home theatre speakers can be a little intimidating, but it doesn’t have to be. Do a little homework in advance and the purchase should be a snap.

What Kind Of Mp3 Player Is Best For You

There are so many different types of Mp3 players on the market today, so how do you know which ones are best for you? First of all, its important to know what an mp3 player can do for you.

Mp3 players in general are a source of music for you. You can download your music onto your mp3 player and be able to have it at your fingertips all of the time. With things like ipods and mp3 players, you can always have your music near you and you can always have it.

However, how do you know what type is good for you? Should you go with a discount mp3 player just because it is cheap? Discount mp3 players might be great, but keep in mind that they might be their own brand, and there might not be any mp3 player accessories to go with them. If you have an apple ipod, you’ll be able to find ipod accessores, and if you have a mp3 player you’ll find mp3 player accessories. With a Microsoft zune, they’ll be accessories for that. You will always know that there are new mp3 players coming on the market, but sometimes it is hard to tell what will be best for you.

You have to keep in mind that each kind of mp3 player will come with its own software and can be used as your hard drive mp3 player. The nano, the shuffle, and the other ipod types will have the same software, but the different mp3 players that aren’t ipods will have their own. That means that you should decide on what kind of software you want to be using before you buy the mp3 payer because after that you are stuck with whatever works with the player that you have. So, the first thing you have to decide on is what you want for the brand name.

After that, buying an mp3 player is a snap. You can look at mp3 player reviews to find out what you like in an mp3 player, whether you want a flash mp3 player or a radio transmitter for your mp3 player. No matter what brand you choose, be sure to get all of the accessories that come with it. You’ll need the headphones and the sound dock, remember that wireless mp3 player accessories and mp3 player batteries and mp3 player bower adapters are all very popular and very important when it comes to your mp3 player and how much use you get out of it. You want to be sure to do your research before you make your purchase so you know you’ve got what you need and you aren’t going to be left behind when it comes to mp3 player technology.

What Is The Difference Between Cordless & Wireless Headphones

Wireless headphones gives you the flexibility to move away from your stereo or television without feeling like you’re going to miss something important. No longer do you have to wait for the next commercial.

This freedom gives you the opportunity to move and work throughout the house and not miss a single thing. Would you like to hear the football or baseball game upstairs without having to move your stereo up there? Or maybe go outside for a few minutes to take the garbage out. No problem…you haven’t missed a thing.

Remember, the head sets themselves do not plug directly into your Ipod or stereo or tv. With each unit you purchase, there is a base unit with infrared technology that sends a signal to your headphones.

This power unit is what plugs into your stereo or television. Also, the base usually is the cradle (on quality units) for recharging the head set as well.

As mentioned earlier, this technology allows the freedom of wireless to be available for mp3 players and other hand held devices. This is great for those wanting to exercise and who is always fumbling with the cord on their head set.

Many people trying to work out are so bothered by the cord the only thing they end up doing is untangling the cord or fixing their earpieces to be more comfortable and have a better fit.

Also, you should know the difference between wireless and cordless. Many people think of them as the same, but they’re not.

Wireless means you most likely have to stay in the line of sight of the base unit. The technology behind this is similar to that of your remote control for the television. The standard range is about 30 feet. Some units are available with more mobility, but signal strength can be lost. This makes most of these units more compatible with home or office use than anywhere else.

There are units available which have multi-user capabilities. This is great for one or more persons to share the exact same audio signal. A setup like this, makes music sharing easy and convenient.

These setups are available for home office and standard office applications. Salesman selling on the telephone are no longer strapped to the desk. This allows freedom of movement.

Being stuck in one position for long periods can actually tire someone out. With this, the telemarketer can stand and take a brief walk or stretch without the cumbersome burden of cords. Instantly, the work environment becomes a more productive and enjoyable experience.

This cord-less technology makes it easy for a teacher to section the class room into groups. Each group can share the media from a single device.

Result? The entire classroom is able to enjoy the freedom of mobility while still remaining productive. No longer are the students being stuck to their desk. Structured settings just became more relaxed. When the student does not feel burdened, the learning experience can become more enjoyable.

Wireless headphones and the resulting technology is no longer limited to just a home stereo. The world is on the move and the wireless headphones technology is moving right along with them.

Planning A Car Audio System Installation

With such a wide range of components and gadget on the market for car audio systems, the big question is “Where do I start?”

First you must decide what exactly you wish to do. If you are wanting to build a car audio system for a daily driver (the car you drive back and forth to work) with good sounds, but you are not interested in competing, a system can easily be put together for under $1000. However, if you are looking for the all-out bass monster, be prepared to drop in some big bucks into your system.

One of the most important things to keep in mind when building a car audio system is planning. Get an idea of where you are going to place components, subwoofers, amplifiers, and power distribution. A lot of headache can be avoided with the proper planning!!

For the basic system, lets look at some of the components needed.

Let’s first start with the head unit (CD player). Obviously you are going to want a nice head unit. If you start with a good quality cd player, and choose to upgrade your sound system in the future, purchase a head unit that will grow with you. Some of the features you may want to keep in mind are:

1. CD changer controls

2. XM / Sirius controls (if you decide to add Satellite radio in the future)

3. Dual RCA outputs (carries signal to the amplifiers)

4. Pause button (important for competing)

5. Detachable face, or other security devices

6. High voltage line driver – this will send the sound signal at a higher voltage to your amplifier/s reducing noise and improving overall sound quality.

After you have chosen your head unit, you will want to make a decision on amplifiers and subwoofers. Keep in mind that you get what you pay for. A $30 subwoofer will be as big as a $300 subwoofer, but the capacities of each will differ greatly. Look at the power handling of each subwoofer and decide accordingly. You will want subwoofers will work with your amplifier/s (see compatibility).

You must also keep in mind the available space in your vehicle. Are you willing to give up your entire cargo area? How many subwoofers will fit? Decide on the size. Sizes will vary from 8″ up to 18″, some are square (Kicker), but most are round. Also keep in mind the resistance (ohms) of the subwoofer and make sure they are compatible with your amplifier/s (see compatibility). The subwoofer decision will also have an effect on the enclosure you decide to build or buy. For the basic system, I would recommend purchasing a pre-fabricated subwoofer enclosure. This will save you a bit of money and headache (especially if you end up building it two or three times!!). Make sure you take accurate measurement of your cargo area before building or buying an enclosure!!

Other components may be needed depending on the type of system you are building and how elaborate you want your sound to be. For the competition vehicle, figure on upgrading your alternator, adding a battery to your system (maybe more), running high quality RCA cables, power cables, ground cables, and speaker cable. You may need to add a capacitor to provide your amplifier with a reservoir of power for bigger hits from the subs. You may need an electronic crossover, an equalizer, replacement factory speakers, an amplifier for your mid-range and tweeters, additional speakers within your vehicle for staging, etc.

Is Bigger Better in Auto Sound Systems

When it comes to auto sound systems, one question seems to be repeated often-is bigger better? The honest answer to that is not by a long shot. There are many excellent quality sound systems that will not require the backseat and your first-born in order to enjoy wonderful quality of sound and music as you drive along on your daily commute. One thing that is important to remember is that dynamite does in fact come in small packages. The same can be true of a good quality sound system for your car, truck, or SUV.

You can elect to have the full range sound package. This package, if not custom installed by the dealer can take up a great deal of real estate within your car, truck, or SUV. If you own a compact car, these types of speakers and this particular type of sound system is definitely not recommended. The first reason it is unattractive is that it will most likely require either the vast majority of your trunk or take out your back seat. I for one like being able to cart around friends, relatives, and/or children-my back seat isn’t up for grabs. I also prefer the continuity of a factory-installed system that takes up none of the premium living space within the interior of my SUV.

I am personally biased towards the wonderful sound quality of the Bose sound system and speakers. The quality of sound with this particular system is excellent and any true music lover will tell you that good quality of sound is better by far than a louder sound. This is not to say that the Bose sound system will be the perfect choice for everyone to use as his or her auto sound system only that it is my first choice as a music lover.

I prefer a softer sound that has good quality to a louder sound of the substandard or even average quality on any day. The problem with most ‘big’ sound systems and speakers is that they often sound hollow or tinny rather than full and robust. A good auto sound system will provide the best possible sound within the confines of the least possible space. You will probably find that you don’t need to sacrifice your backseat in order to hold the speakers and while the Bose sound system for automobiles does cost more than some sound systems, it won’t require a second mortgage on your home in order to afford. There are actually times in life when you get what you pay for.

The important thing to remember is that you do not have to have the most expensive, the best known, or even the biggest sound system in order to have a wonderful quality sound system in your automobile. You will not even have to have a Bose sound system in order to have a sound system that is not only excellent quality but also excellent sound. You do not need to pay an arm and a leg or any other appendages in order to have a good sound on your daily commute to work.

Music is all around us, at work, at home, on television shows. Music sets moods, sets tones, and kills moods on occasion. It only makes sense that you have good quality equipment upon which to play the music that so greatly enhances and enriches your life. If you are in the market for an auto sound system it only makes sense to listen to several before deciding on the one that will work best with your musical tastes and your desire for your vehicle sound system. Don’t be misled by commission minded sales associated that think you need the latest, greatest, and most expensive toy on the market. Find a system that sounds good to you and go with that system. You do not have to go for a better sound if you find a sound you like that should be enough.

Home Theater Surround Sound Basics

Major movie houses, theatres, home entertainment environments, gaming, arcade and other public and in-house presentation areas today use surround sound systems for enhanced audio entertainment. Surround sound is basically when you increase the dimension of your sound (or sound waves), sort of like on the Twilight Zone. In other words you take the standard one dimensional audio production, referred to as mono / Left-Right, and turn it into multiple dimensions; two or three.

Sound Systems

To create surround sound, you can go any one of several different directions. The simplest and probably the oldest way, would be to set up a bunch of speakers surrounding the audience, so that the sound comes in to the listeners from all over, from the different directions.

A different method is to combine the use of headphones with localized audio production with psychoacoustics. The result is a simulated three-dimensional effect.

And another way to create surround sound is with ambisonics where you reconstruct the sound at a central point. However, you get a gradual decline in quality as you move outward.

Still another way is to use wave field synthesis (WFS), with multiple loudspeakers and a computer aid.

Popular today are everyday devices like stereo, PC soundcards, some camcorders and AV receivers. These feature digital signal or audio processors that create surround sound via stereo sources, or have add-ons, as in some camcorder cases.


Just as nothing stays the same, ditto with sound formats. Top ones have included
discrete 5.1 Surround sound format with DVD-Audio, also known as DVD-A and SACD which stands for Super Audio CD. Moving on you have ambisonics, quadraphonic then Dolby 5.1 Surround sound. And later are: DTS, DVD-Video or DVD-V and the latest MP3 Surround.

Surround Sound Specs

3.0 Surround (matrixed):
3 audio channels: 2 for speakers front – left, right; 1 rear

4.0 Surround (matrixed Quadraphonic):
4 audio channels: 2 for speakers front – left, right; 2 rear

4.1 Surround (matrixed Prologic):
4 audio channels: 3 for speakers front – left, center, right; 1 rear (.1 = subwoofer)

5.1 Surround (matrixed Prologic II):
5 audio channels: 3 for speakers front – left, center, right; 2 at rear or side (.1 = subwoofer)

5.1 Surround (discrete Dolby Digital, DTS):
5 digital audio channels: 3 for speakers front – left, center, right; 2 at rear or side (.1 = subwoofer)

6.1 Surround (discrete Dolby Digital EX, DTS-ES):
6 digital audio channels: 3 for speakers front – left, center, right; 3 for the rear / side (.1 = subwoofer)

7.1 Surround (discrete SDDS):
7 digital audio channels: left, right, center, left surround, right surround, left rear, right rear positions (.1 = subwoofer)

Home Audio Systems: Choosing Speakers that Compliment Your Home Theater Design

Having the right speakers for your home theater room – correct size, proper sound output, and fitting aesthetics – brings the entire room together in one cohesive piece. When looking at new home speakers, consider the size of the room, the appropriate speaker size, the number of speakers that you are going to be using, and what is within your price range for sound equipment. You may also want to consider more aesthetic items like speaker placement and the overall look of your home theater design with speakers.

When it comes to finding home speakers, the first thing to do is analyze the size of the room. You want to take a good look at how much space you have, and then do some calculations about your speaker placement and number of speakers. For instance, if the room is very large, you are going to want to place your speakers much higher. If it is small, speakers on the floor will cut down on echoes and make it easier to align your entire sound system. In-wall speakers are another option that will allow you to have quality sound from all parts of the room without dealing with the potential clutter of floorstanding speakers.

The next thing to consider is the size of the speakers themselves. Each speaker type (front, side, subwoofer) come in different sizes depending on how they will be mounted, the quality of the sound and the type of application they will be used for. Larger speakers may be able to give you richer, deeper sound but that sort of sound may not be necessary for the size and layout of your particular home theater room.  Additionally, quality speaker manufacturers are improving on the sound quality of smaller speakers every year.  Large room sound may soon not require the use of large floorstanding or cabinet speakers. Consider the size of the in-wall speakers you prefer as well. The size of the speaker will equate to the portion of your wall that will need to be removed in order to place the speakers. A custom home theater installer can help with defining the parameters for the home theater speaker size best for your home.

The number of speakers your room needs is another item to consider. Several of the speaker brands offer different lines of speakers that include three, five or seven speaker configurations. Consult with a home audio technician or custom installer about what is the best proportion for your home if you are unsure of what you will need.

Speakers for any home theater are no longer outside of many people’s reach. Home theater equipment is available in a wide range of pricing suitable for any budget.  Quality speakers by top-brands are available within the range of average home owners and top of the line speakers are also available for audio junkies who have a fine ear for sound and a fascination with the technology.  Don’t let pricing stop you from getting the right type of speakers for your home. Talk to a custom installer about your price range and what is most important to you when it comes to the sound quality in your home theater.

Consider these important items as you develop your home theater’s audio system.

Are Bose Speakers Worth It?

People who have Bose speakers say they have excellent sound quality and tech support team, even though their system is simpler than most yet cost more. And others have different opinions. So let’s see if Bose is worth the purchase.

Bose’s 3-2-1 system means that two Bose Articulated Array speakers are used instead of five, producing excellent surround sound quality and boasting a multi-channel output. Plus they use a patented Acoustimass module, not a subwoofer, that can be placed anywhere in the home theater area and still produce excellent, quality sound quality.

Like snapping fingers, you can connect everything with only one power cord and three wires. Plus installation means only four connections are necessary:

– media center with acoustimass module
– power outlet with acoustimass module
– television to media center
– speakers to media center

The Media Center unit contains an AM/FM tuner and integrated DVD player that plays nearly any type of CD / DVD (regardless of whether or not they are rewrites, etc.) Other features include an equalizer, amplifiers, three inputs with both digital coaxial and analog jacks. Plus one optical digital audio input is available for more audio connections you may need.


Some people have reportedly found different types of Bose displays in stores. They feel that while the equipment they use in their displays may give off excellent sound from roughly three feet away for in-store listeners, the same systems in home areas would more than likely reproduce distorted sound and definitely lesser quality sound overall.

So bottom line is to test and read quality reviews. Then see for yourself and make sure to check for warranty information first so that you are covered while you are initially testing your system in your home. Don’t fall in love with it until you give it thorough testing with different music compositions and other programs – -and ask other people (friends, family, etc.) to test it, too.

Better safe than sorry! It very much may be worth your investment. But why take a chance?

Smart Reviews for Any Budget