Not everyone can afford the time and money to go to the cinema on a regular basis, however there is an alternative that can perhaps offer you a similar experience in your own home.

True, the best way to watch a movie is in a movie house with its booming sound and wide screen; still you can get pretty close by creating your very own home cinema. Those chatting, paper rustling, coughing strangers that always seem to sit right behind you in the cinema can now be avoided.

There are a number of factors to consider before you head out to the shops for the latest equipment.

The key element is the room you propose to use for your home cinema. The essential idea of a home cinema is to get as close as you can to the whole cinematic experience. That includes the room layout, seating, lighting and décor.

Consider how many people you may have in the room at any given time. Everyone should have a good view of the screen. Make sure the seating is comfortable and can easily be cleaned, especially if you have kids! A good option would be to visit showrooms and to visualize the set up in your own room.

Now let’s look at the equipment. One of the most important pieces of equipment is the visual display. You will need to decide if you are going for a projector and screen or a large TV. A projector will enable the largest picture, often around 100 inches diagonally at a distance of between 10 and 20 feet, with high definition. However an LCD or plasma TV is usually less expensive.

Remember that a home cinema will give you not only a large screen but also a more exciting gaming experience when used with systems such as Nintendo Wii, Microsoft Xbox or Sony Playstation.

A good sound system will complete the set-up. The 5.1 channel system is popular being considerably cheaper, but the top of the range 7.1 channel system is the way of the future. Combine a good quality Blu-Ray player with a 7.1 channel surround system and you’ll get pretty close to that wonderful cinema sound.

To make the experience of your home theatre as realistic as possible, consider enhancing the room’s ambience with cinema posters and why not install dimmer switches for the lighting. As a final touch, add a popcorn machine close to the room entrance, then sit back, relax and enjoy the experience.

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