Home Theater Tips for the Blockbuster Builder

Home Theater Tips for the Blockbuster Builder


The days of the movie theater have relocated into the comforts of one’s own home, with TVs getting larger, definition getting higher and custom home theaters becoming more in demand.

Summer is known to be the time of blockbusters in Hollywood, but with a well-executed home theater project, clients can avoid the high ticket prices and overpriced popcorn of today’s modern movie-going experience. High-quality content is becoming more readily available through streaming devices, on-demand services and physical media.

But first, there are many questions the builder must ask. Do clients want a theater that is going to grow with the technology? Do they even have the correct room for it? What’s their wiring situation?

These are all questions that must be presented before starting a project, says Stephanie Casimiro, marketing director at Metra Home Theater.

And for some clients, the definition of “home theater” can carry a variety of meanings. 

“Some people think, ‘Oh, I have a TV on the wall and great surround sound, that’s a home theater,’” says Casimiro. “And to others, especially us in the industry, a home theater is so much more. So the first thing a builder and integrator need to ask is, ‘What does the customer want? What specifics? Pre-wiring. Budget.’ There are just so many variables to consider.”

RELATED: The Big Picture – Building the Perfect Home Theater

Lighting, both on the floor and on the ceiling, can make or break the "look" of a home theater.
Lighting, both on the floor and on the ceiling, can make or break the “look” of a home theater.

All About the Look

Ultimately, Casimiro states, it’s all about the look—before and after the TV is on.

“Clients usually want the aisle lit up, lights underneath the stairs, you name it. I would say you see this in nine out of ten high-end theaters, because you just can’t beat the look,” says Casimiro. “With the high end, they want the latest and the greatest. They want it to work, and they want it to be reliable.”

However, Casimiro stresses that if the client desires the so-called latest and greatest, builders are often going to need to start from scratch. “The old technology doesn’t play well with the new,” she adds.

RELATED: A Classic Movie Theater in the Home

"The Martian" was the first 4K home release to hit the market, and more releases are following.
“The Martian” was the first 4K home release to hit the market, and more releases are following.

4K Rising

Among this “new technology,” Casimiro points to one of the biggest buzz words in the industry right now—4K Ultra HD. She notes the difference between 4K and a trend from years back such as 3D content and televisions.

“3D had a splash at CES but never really materialized,” she says. “4K is being content driven. Customers are actually asking for it.”

And the technology is already racing to keep up. For a true home theater, professionals could seek out a JVC Sony projector, which offers true 4K quality. It’s essentially identical to the current quality of digital projection at major movie theater chains like AMC. This would be ideal for the high-end luxury theaters Casimiro referred to earlier.

RELATED: Streaming Series – The Future of 4K

On the less expensive side, builders and integrators can create entertainment packages with products such as 4K televisions and 4K Blu-ray players, which can also be boosted by including a few 4K Ultra HD Blu-rays in the overall offering.

“4K physical media is getting more popular. ‘The Martian’ was the first to come out on 4K Blu-ray, and many others are starting to follow this trend,” says Casimiro. 

Including some of these as gifts in your home theater package could definitely set you apart from other builders in the business.

If you want your business to be of blockbuster quality, appealing to your clients’ taste in both technology and media consumption is the perfect way to burst through the builder box office.


[tps_title]Top Ten 4K Movies on the Market Now[/tps_title]

91tjtywjxvl-sl15001. The Martian

As Casimiro state, sci-fi blockbuster “The Martian” was the first to enter the home 4K market. However, many other films are beginning to follow this precedent, turning 4K Ultra HD Blu-rays into the next big thing for residential entertainment consumers. Builders can distinguish themselves by including some of these in packages with their home theaters, sound systems and other integrated technologies.

4K Ultra HD Blu-rays feature powerful sound and HDR (High-Dynamic-Range) Imaging, a visual technique used to reproduce a greater dynamic range of luminosity than is possible with standard digital imaging or photographic techniques. This will produce vibrant colors and images similar to what one would experience during the actual multiplex experience.

From new releases to restorations of iconic blockbusters, take a look at more current 4K offerings on the market, and consider including them in your next entertainment package.

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About The Author

Greg Vellante is a staff writer and multimedia specialist at TecHome Builder, as well as a content coordinator for AE Ventures events. He has over a decade of experience writing for various publications on topics that range from cinema to editorials to home technology. His favorite technologies fall into the A/V and home entertainment realm, and he’s keeping a close eye on the rising trends in robotics and virtual/augmented reality. Greg resides in Boston, holds a degree in Media Studies from Emerson College and pursues screenwriting/filmmaking in his free time.

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