Home theater - choosing the best room

Granted, not everybody has the option of choosing between several rooms in order to designate a potential home theater. But even if you have a choice of only two spaces, these tips may be helpful. Also, you may see a great deal of problems with the room you have already set your heart on before even installing all the equipment, saving yourself a monumental audio-visual failure.

1. Do not pick a room that is too big. Generally speaking, the larger a room the more difficult it is to properly fill it with sound. By selecting a large room for the home theater you increase the chances of having to invite a professional or spend a long time figuring out the best placement for the speakers and additional elements that can improve the sound. Also, the size of the room will determine the size of the screen. Not a big problem if you were going with a projection system, but if your plan was to use a plasma TV the price tag may turn out not too accommodating.

2. Avoid perfectly square rooms. They tend to produce some strange sounds. A rectangle would be ideal, especially if you are going to place the screen on the narrow side. The wall behind the screen should not have any windows or doors.

3. It should be relatively easy to keep the room dark. You may have to install curtains on the windows.

4. It is great if the walls are muted. Dark gray or black walls are best. Avoid shiny surfaces, they can create a lot of glare. Be prepared to install drapes throughout the room to absorb ambient light.

5. The ceiling should not be too high. Sound can become trapped in the upper part of the room, it can also resonate and echo. Sometimes hanging drapes or partitions can create a smaller space in a large room.

6. You want to have a good rug in the media room. Hardwood floors, so desirable in the kitchen, would be a glaring nightmare in a home theater. The sound would also bounce from a tile or wood floor.