Upgrading Your Home Entertainment System

It used to be that the ultimate entertainment experience for on-screen viewing was to go to the movie theater - the clear, super-sized image and the surround sound were available only in the theater, while fuzzy video cassettes had to suffice for out-of-theater flicks. All of that has changed, though, with the advent of the improved home theater system, through which viewers can recreate the cinema experience in the comfort of their own home.

Advanced technology, with home versions of digital surround sound, high definition televisions, DVD players, and HD programming, have allowed movie buffs and sports fans, among others, to improve their at-home viewing experiences, thanks to the crisp image quality and advanced sound technology that makes the on-screen performance appear to actually be taking place, right in your living room. So what exactly do you need to recreate the multiplex experience in your home?

For the ultimate in home entertainment, a high definition, large-screen TV is essential. High resolution will allow you to A few good-quality speakers are also crucial, as well as a router that can distribute the surround sound equally for balanced audio and a more realistic, involved sound quality - for example, if, in the show or movie, a character on the left speaks, the sound will come from a left-side speaker, or if the scene is taking place under a waterfall, the surround sound will reflect the effect.

Other more technologically-advanced equipment, such as a high definition projector, can take your home theater system to the next level. You can even install tiered theater seating for the increased viewing pleasure of all. Should you choose to stick with a TV monitor, though, you will need to decide if you want a plasma or an LCD screen, how large of a screen you want, and whether or not you are interested in a flat screen that can be mounted on a wall like a painting or stowed away in a shallow cabinet.

Your DVD player is a very important component, as well, and you can either simply purchase a popular, recommended brand name off the shelf at the electronics store, or you can look into getting your hands on a high definition HD DVD player for an image quality that is even further increased from that which a standard DVD produces. Most DVD players have multiple functions that make selecting a good one an important decision - many models can read DVD-R and DVD+R for at-home viewing of copied or homemade DVD data, and all DVD players can double as your music CD or mp3 player. If you intend to use it as your main-source music player, keep an eye out for the DVD-Audio and Super Audio CD labels, which specifically produce high-resolution sound quality.