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Home Audio Video: The Importance of Putting it All Together

[buttonstyle] Coming up with a design for the acoustic system of your home theater can be compared to a balancing act which, if not taken care of, can hurt both your wallet and your comfort. If you want to relish the quality of a surround sound system, you will need to position the gear appropriately. This is why home audio installers are perfect for the job. Don’t get me wrong, I didn’t say you couldn’t do it yourself. But really, hiring a qualified professional is the sensible thing to do, especially because they are skilled in giving equal attention to both the form and function of home theater systems. Some of the best home audio installers, like Lelch A/V, are able to combine great interior design with accurate engineering techniques to find a complete solution for the home audio system.

Read Between the A/V Lines:

The bottom line is: Getting the most out of your home theater system will depend on what components are being used, but more importantly, the home audio installers who are going to connect all these different components together. It amazes me how some people take simple things for granted, like asking for references or taking the time to go and meet with the installer. Requesting for references of the systems the installer has installed will help you scope yours. Reading online references from previous clients of the company can give you a good idea about whether the technicians will be responsive to your requests and needs or not. It is also important to know whether the audio video design company was able to complete the installation on time or not and whether the clients were satisfied with their work.

Demonstration and Consultation:

If a picture is worth a thousand words, visiting the company might very well be worth thousands of dollars. Paying a visit to the installer’s office can speak volumes about their work ethic and how they carry out their business. Granted that not every audio/ video installation company will have an extensive display or a top notch demo facility, their demonstration and consultation should be up to par with your basic requirements. All you should be looking for is that the company is neat and committed to their trade.

Ask About Their Products:

It is important to know what products are going to be installed in the audio video design. Before you choose an installation company, ask them what brands they deal with and why they chose to go with those brands. Rest assured that most companies do choose their brands carefully, but you should ask if the company is an authorized dealer. It is also important to find out if they will be able to make the necessary repairs and provide replacements if something goes wrong in the future. Please feel free to share your experience with us. [insertbutton]

The Quick Do’s and Don’ts When Setting Up a New Flat Screen TV

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Successful Minneapolis Flat Screen Home Theater Installation

Congratulations, you just purchased a brand new, shiny flat screen! Feels good, right? Before you pull it out of the box, plug it in, and start channel surfing, there are a few things to consider if you really want to maximize your home entertainment experience. That is why you got a new TV, isn’t it?

Things to Do...

home theater installation tipsGet the right connection Chances are you purchased your new TV for the promise of awesome high definition (HD) picture quality. What you may not know is that while most sets still allow you to connect to your DVD player, Blu-Ray, or other device using the traditional red, white, and yellow cables (composite cables), if you want to experience true HD you’ll need to buy an HDMI cable. This cable allows for high definition 720p and 1080p picture quality. Without it, you’ll still be viewing standard definition (SD). Most flat screens today have at least two HDMI slots for hooking up HDMI compatible devices. The cables typically range from $10-$80, depending on manufacturer and quality. You’ll need one for each HD device you plan to use. Pick a good spot At first glance, the space above the mantle may seem like a good place to mount the TV. Put it there if you want to see a chiropractor every week for the eternal kink in your neck. For ideal viewing in the long run, you want to position your TV at eye level and away from lighting sources that will interfere with picture quality. You should also keep an optimal viewing distance between where you’ll sit and the TV. This varies depending on the size of your TV. Experts typically recommend between 4-6.5 ft for a 42” TV, and 5-7.5ft for a 50”. Remember, just because it’s a flat screen doesn’t mean it has to be mounted on the wall. There are plenty of TV stands and entertainment centers that are just as good for your room’s feng-shui. They can also help hide cables (more on that later)! Calibrate to your needs Most flat screens today come preconfigured with fairly good picture settings. However, your viewing experience can vary drastically between watching a movie with dark backgrounds and playing bright, color intensive video games. The key is to calibrate your TV’s settings—color, brightness, contrast, and refresh rate—to the input you are using, and to set them to levels that look best to you. Most TVs today let you save these configurations, so you do not have to reset them each and every time you use a particular input.

Things you DON’T Do...

Use the wrong cleaning products You just spent a pretty penny on your new TV. Don’t damage it by using the wrong cleaning products. Flat screens are not windows. That means Windex is out. Don’t use any glass cleaners that contain alcohol or ammonia. Instead, purchase a solution that is specifically made for flat screens. Most electronic stores and many supermarkets carry them. When you apply the cleaner, don’t spray it directly onto the screen. Instead, lightly dampen a microfiber cloth with it and gently wipe the screen. Try to avoid using any wiping materials, such as brushes, that may scratch the screen. Tip: Wipe a soft, used dryer sheet over the screen’s surface to help repel dust particles! Leave your wiring everywhere The last thing you want to do after a hard day’s work mounting the TV to the wall is trip over the power cord and have the thing come crashing to the ground (it was in studs, wasn’t it?). Cords can be tricky, as they aren’t always cooperative. What’s more, you may have multiple cables popping out from all sides of the TV. Fear not, there are things you can do to help control the chaos. First, try to run your cables either parallel or perpendicular to your TV. Keeping them against the wall in straight lines is less distracting and more aesthetically pleasing. Second, try to run them inconspicuously on the floorboard or in corners when connecting to power outlets. This will help prevent people from tripping on them. Lastly, use ties to bind them together. Consider enclosing them in a tube or wire-hider. You can even paint the enclosure to further camouflage the wires – ninja style. Do it all by yourself Carrying a TV into your home or mounting to a wall are not easy tasks with larger TVs. Don’t be afraid to ask a friend for help. Your back will thank you for it. If no one is around to lend a hand, consider having the TV professionally delivered, installed, and set up. There you have it! With these fundamental tips in your back pocket, you are well on your way to fully enjoying what your new flat screen TV has to offer. Check back for more tips and tricks to take your home entertainment experience even further. Jay Sarkin is a TV and entertainment blogger for cable.tv. Look to him for the scoop on hit movies and TV shows, tech reviews, how-to’s, and more. [sc:insertbutton]

Solutions for a 5.1 Home Theater System

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Designing for Sound - Minneapolis Home Theater

After you have bought yourself an HDTV, speakers are the next area of importance for creating a home theater system which gives you the perfect surround sound quality and a great cinematic experience. The ideal placement of the home theater installation is determined by looking at the room design and the client’s preference. Often the sound quality is an afterthought when installing a home theater system and is thought about after the room décor and other requirements are dealt with. In many home theater systems, surround sound capabilities are enhanced these days but you can and should get additional equipments to enhance the sound quality. In normal home theater systems the ideal number of speakers is five but more gear can be added according to your budget.

Loud speakers and channels

In a 5.1 surround sound system setup there are five full bandwidth channels which are center, right, left, rear left and rear right and an LFE or band limited channel. The distinction here is that the center channel is the signal which represents the sound that will be reproduced by the center speaker. Another example of this is that the subwoofer channel is sometimes called the LFE channel. This is particularly true in the home theater systems that do not use base management. In these systems the subwoofer is directly connected to the LFE channel. In a home theater system the subwoofer is used to produce all the LFE channels and with the base management it can also reproduce some of the main channels as well. The signal which feeds the subwoofer is then called the subwoofer channel.

Room Size

The first factor that is considered is the size of the room in which the home theater system will be fixed. This selection is made upon the cubic volume quantity of the listening environment. In case of an uneven shaped room, a larger set of dimensions is used to create the perfect sound.

Listening Distance

The most important thing to do before getting the home theater system installed is to probably make out the distance between the screen and the center of the seating area. You will also have to consider the size of the video image while being viewed from the sitting area. In three way systems, the directivity control wavelength (DCW) is used to control the midrange driver in both axes, enabling it to be optimized to carry sound through a longer distance. It should be mentioned here that home theater installation is not a joke, and should be handed over to professionals who have the proper knowledge and experience in both designing and wiring your home theater system setup. [sc:insertbutton]

Digital Trends: Get the Most Out of Your Home Theater System

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Lelch Audio Video in Minneapolis...Leaders in Home Theater

It is hotter than hell! And the last place I would want to be is on my roof fiddling around with wires. That’s why I hired Lelch Audio Video in Minneapolis, who are one of the best in home automation and services in Minnesota for home theater installation.
Before getting an HDTV installation, however, there are a few small points to consider.

Installing the Home entertainment system

While getting a home theater installation, keeping in mind the room acoustics is often overlooked. By considering these challenges associated with good room acoustics, good quality sound can be produced. The two extremes that effect room acoustics are discussed below.
  • For instance if a room has thick carpeting and heavy curtains along with upholstered furniture, the midrange frequencies will lose energy. On the bright side, an absorptive room can result into a more accurate picture quality. If in doubt on whether to choose the one with a good room volume or a listening distance, always go for the model that has the highest SPL output.
  • On the other hand, if a room is minimally furnished with many hard surfaces and bare walls, it would have less sound absorption and will be highly reflective. Although this case is a rarity, you should go for the model that has a lower range. These room types also have an effect on the imaging by making it appear slightly diffused.
These recommendations for the HDTV installation are for smaller rooms and are expected to give a good theatrical experience. Don’t be afraid of using a larger system that can give more impact and also offers more head room. Your only main concern should be the balance of the whole system.

Operating the Home theater system

To some people operating the home theater system can be complicated. For example, in order to watch a DVD in a home theater system you will have to turn on three different components which are the TV, the receiver and the DVD player. Next you are supposed to adjust the sound mode and select the receivers DVD input. Then you have to select the TV input in which the DVD player is connected to, and finally you get to push the play button on the remote control. No wonder some people think of it as a hassle. To make your life a bit easier you can start by writing all this down and making a macro or ‘cheat sheet’. The cheat sheet will tell you which remote to use for carrying out each step of the process. The only thing that’s left is to navigate three or four remote controls. That can be made easier by using a tape to label each remote or...consolidate the remotes with our home automation systems! [sc:insertbutton]

Lelch Audio Video Earns Esteemed 2012 Angie’s List Super Service Award

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Lelch Audio Video Earns Esteemed 2012 Angie’s List Super Service Award

Award reflects company’s consistently high level of customer service

Lelch has earned the service industry-coveted 2012 Angie’s List Super Service Award, an honor awarded annually to approximately 5 percent of all the companies rated on Angie’s List, the nation’s leading provider of consumer reviews on local service companies. We at Lelch Audio Video couldn’t be more thrilled. We work hard to make sure that we provide the best possible service to each and every customer every day. “It’s a select group of companies rated on Angie’s List that can claim the exemplary customer service record of being a Super Service Award winner,” said Angie’s List Founder Angie Hicks. “Our standards for the Super Service Award are quite high. The fact that Lelch Audio Video earned this recognition speaks volumes about its dedication providing great service to its customers.” Angie’s List Super Service Award 2012 winners have met strict eligibility requirements, including earning a minimum number of reports, an excellent rating from their customers and abiding by Angie’s List operational guidelines. Service company ratings are updated daily on Angie’s List. Companies are graded on an A through F scale in areas ranging from price to professionalism to punctuality. Members can find the 2012 Super Service Award logo next to company names in search results on AngiesList.com. Thank you Minnesotans you are the best! [sc:insertbutton]

Picking the Right TV Size for Your Media Room

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Lelch Helps You Choose the Right Size Screen

TV Sizing MethodBig television screens are more likely to catch your attention when you go to a retail store but keep in mind that big is not always better. With televisions becoming a lot slimmer and wider, the square box has now been replaced with wide screens having an aspect ratio of 16:9. When picking out a television for your living room, you need to figure out the right size - not too small and not too big - for a comfortable viewing experience. Here are a few aspects that you should keep in mind for purchasing the right TV size for your room.

The Rule Of Thirds applied to TV Size

According to this rule, your viewing distance should be three times the TV’s diagonal screen size for an immersive feeling. Although, some prefer sitting within a distance that is twice the diagonal TV screen size. This is no hard and fast rule, but depends on your comfort level so that you do not have to move your head to see each corner of the TV.

Test Your Angles

The ideal viewing angle is directly in front of the television, but not everybody has room size and shapes that cater to that. Make sure you pick a position that you would frequently be watching the TV from and place the TV directly in front. The screen height off the ground is also important when considering TV screen size. Although your entertainment unit and coffee table are low to the ground, the centre of the television screen should be positioned in the line of sight. For this you can purchase a large screen TV so that you do not have to look down at the screen.

Room Aspects

If you have an entertainment unit in you room, you need to measure the space where you would want to place the television. There should be at least an inch above and on the sides of the television for ventilation. Though bigger television screens might seem appealing, you wouldn’t want to have that dominating the room to a large extent. Keep in mind the room décor as well to see if the television goes along with it.

Recreate The TV Before You Buy

For a rough approximation, you could stick sheets of paper together to the size of the TV you intend on purchasing and place it at the spot. This would give you a clear idea of how the real thing would look on the wall or entertainment unit. [sc:insertbutton]