The Sound Men: Experts Reveal The Principles To Set Up A Great Home Theatre System
If top-class home entertainment is your raison d’etre, and you don’t mind spending your retirement fund to that end, you’ll be happy to know that specialists exist for this very purpose – to help you build extremely high-end home theatres that will blow standard ones out of the water. There’s probably no better way to watch a good movie on a Sunday afternoon, enjoy a crucial sports encounter with your friends or simply relax to music with a drink, at the end of a busy day.
Before you go ahead and invest, though, there are some factors you should keep in mind. “You need to take into account the space assigned, application and the budget. These three factors govern everything. We have people who have proper rooms which are dedicated theatres, and then there are people who have small dens. So, the space will determine the kind of home theatre you should build,” says Mehernosh Pervez, founder of Sound Decisions.
“You have to take care of the acoustics of the place. Then, you have to see the loudspeaker’s frequency response across the horizontal and vertical plane, and check whether it matches the acoustics or not. Choosing the size of the speaker is also important. You can’t have a large speaker in a small room, or a small speaker in a large one. Secondly, your air-conditioning system should be very silent, as a lot of people don’t realise how much of a problem that can create,” says Khushrau Jilla, owner of the Nexus Audio Video showroom in Mumbai. “I would not want my home theatre to be larger than about 24 feet by 17 feet. Anything larger than that and you lose the intimacy of the performance,” he adds.
The sky is literally the limit for people who want an experience that is unsurpassed, and some of these home theatres are assembled for unreal amounts of money. “One of the theatres that we are doing right now, outside Mumbai, costs about a million dollars just for a single room,” says Pervez, who has built an experience centre (essentially an uberluxurious home theatre room) to showcase what can be done for those clients who want nothing but the best. It’s got 3D surround sound, a 2K projector and a programmable, colour changing sky dome, among other things.
Not all clients are willing to break the bank, of course, and some of them have expectations that aren’t feasible at all. “They want a Rolls- Royce which can go as fast as a Ferrari – but they want to pay for a Fiat. They want monumental pieces of art, so that their home theatre looks like an architectural piece. They don’t realise that a lot of what they want is exactly opposite to what the acoustics of a theatre demand,” says Jilla.
Some of the brands that have the mark of approval from these specialists include Stage Accompany from Holland (perfect for a cinematic experience), Professional Monitor Company, Legacy Audio, California Audio Technology, Stealth Acoustics (completely invisible speakers) and Dali, from Denmark.
We ask Pervez how he would design a fantasy cost-no-bar home theatre for MW. “I would design a room that would be a man cave of sorts. It would have gaming, of course – a TV along with an Xbox and PS4. It’ll also have a simulated chair, for a car racing game. Nowadays, you get special chairs where you not only have audio and visual simulation, but you also have physical simulation, where you can actually feel the action that’s happening on the screen,” he says.