A DIY Guide to Making Your Own Home Theater

Making your own home theater system does not need to be difficult, nor should it set you back thousands of dollars. The smooth and satisfying installation of home theaters requires a firm budget and careful planning of electrical input and video components.

Set Up a Budget

Any time you dive into a home improvement project, your first order of business should be to set up a budget. Setting expenditure limits for a home theater system will make installation more manageable. Provide a bit of a cushion because renovation can have various unexpected expenses. You can install anything from a simple organized set-up for your entertainment equipment to a full-blown movie theater.  Regardless of which way you decide to go, you will need a frame, wiring, and insulation. 

You may need to update your equipment to include an HDTV, speakers, receiver, and plenty of cables.  Limit your receiver to the features you truly need, or costs can bog you down. Carefully gauge the space you have. Expanding an area to fit larger equipment will blow your budget.  Consider a closet or a basement that is already closed in to cut renovation costs. Do not forget about furniture such as seating and flooring. If you do not have a separate room, consider using black curtains to wall off an area. A decent set up can run you roughly between $1,000 to $5,000.

Set Electrical First

Your electrical set-up is one of the most important aspects of your home theater system because it allows you to visualize the final layout.  It also determines the safety of your system.  But to address the main priority here, it is a crucial factor in the sound and image quality of your components.  You must take into account equipment placement, best running routes for cables, room lighting needs, and potential future additions. Use certified wires and high-quality AV cables, paying attention to how they withstand high temperatures, fire, and chemical exposure.  Use the thickest wiring that fits your budget, make sure you have compatible connectors, and make all connections direct to avoid wire splicing.  Decide if you want in-wall wiring as this provides a neater finish but can be much more expensive.  Remember you will need several power strips to go near your television.

Video Input System

With the progression of modern technology, video input now requires forethought.  Gone are the days of VCRs, and many do not even have cable boxes anymore.  If you have a cable box, any other video input device or system is optional.  The most simple video input you can use is a DVD player which is also fast becoming outdated.  An alternative to this is a Blu-Ray player.  Game consoles have become quite versatile, with Xbox One no longer just for teenagers to play video games.  They also allow you to stream TV shows and watch DVDs and digital movies.  Finally, a Smart TV adapter turns your television into a smart device.  You will not need a physical box, but you also will not be able to watch your favorite DVDs.

A DIY home theater system can be viable and even optimal if you lay the proper groundwork.  Organization and budgeting are key as with any home renovation project.  The frame lies in your wiring scheme. An excellent place to begin setting up your individual components is to decide which video input system will best fit your lifestyle.

Want to build your own home theater? Talk to JCF Construction today for advice and a free estimate!


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