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How to Decide on a Home Theater Sound System

by Ronald Elias

A new home theater system is truly music to your ears. 

There's nothing quite like popping in a Blu-ray and hearing the sound of your favorite movie come to life around you. With a properly installed home theater system, that's exactly what you will get: Sound quality that rivals the theater-going experience, but with the comfort and convenience of staying at home on your own couch. 

We're huge movie buffs here at Smart Automation Solutions, and we know the difference between just putting any old surround sound system in -- or relaxing with a professionally installed home theater system that will wow your friends and family alike. And be sure to invite your neighbors over as well, we wouldn’t want you to leave anyone out! Let's take a look at what you should consider before pulling the trigger on a new home theater system. 


The first thing you need to figure out is pretty simple: What do you plan to use your new home theater sound system for? Think about the size of the room – the larger the room, the more powerful the system will need to be to evenly distribute sound into the space and properly pressurize the room. You should consider the aesthetics of the theater, such as wanting to be able to see the speakers or keeping them hidden. Or, if you are building a new house, this is the perfect time to put an infrastructure plan in place to ensure you have more than enough space for a theater – and wiring – both now and in the future. 

It is important to take wiring into account. Can you run wire through the home to all the speaker locations? If you’re unsure, give us a call at 240-242-7272 – if anybody can get wire to a location, we can -- and if we can’t, we’ll have alternate suggestions to help get your theater all ready to go. 


It may not be the most fun step, but the next step before you can have fun with your own home theater is the budgeting process: figuring out a ballpark of how much you want to spend and how extensive of a system you want to install. The perfect system is one that meets your performance needs within a budget you are comfortable with. 

Entry level home theater systems could run you in the realm of several thousand dollars once everything is said and done, but the sky is really the limit if you want to get into giant floor standing speakers, or even in-wall, hidden speakers that can turn any room into a perfect replica of your favorite cinema. If you are just starting out and looking to build your system over time, we’d suggest meeting with our team to discuss how to value engineer your system while giving you room to grow in the future. 

Don't forget to include the extraneous components, as well. You'll need separates that can bring all of your devices and speakers together. These separates are a surround sound preamplifier and amplifier allow for much more flexibility, power, and performance – which is exactly what you want out of a home theater. 

You'll also need high-quality speaker cables to make sure you are getting pristine sound in each and every speaker. Throw in some HDMI cables and all the extras can add up, but they are just as important as any other part of your theater. 

Wired vs. Wireless

We'd be here all week if we really dug into both sides of the eternal wired versus wireless speaker debate, but we'll sum it up quickly so you can get back to other aspects of speaker shopping research.

The basics boil down to this: If you want the best sound possible, wired speakers are the way to go. The advances in wireless surround speakers are closing that gap, but if you are aiming for the best possible home theater experience, then you want to hard wire your theater speakers. 

Of course, this means that you have to factor in running wires around your theater, as well. Leave that to a professional like us, and you'll get the benefits of a wired system without the clutter or mess of having to run your own wires all over the place.

Sound Quality

When you work with us, you can be confident that we only sell high quality components. Over the years we’ve auditioned loudspeakers and component from the world’s best manufacturers and hand selected the brands we felt delivered the best bang for the buck, no matter the price point. 

Last but not least, you are getting these speakers to listen to, so you should make sure they sound good! Your best bet is to listen to them in person, and it's even better if you are able to listen to them at home in the space that you are planning on using them. The more time you can spend with them the better. You want to make sure that you enjoy listening to these speakers for long periods of time, not just the short bursts you find in a typical demo. 

This is an important step, and you want to make sure that you are always shopping somewhere that understands how important this step is. And we get it -- we want you to love your new home theater speakers as much as possible. That's why we offer all of our custom services and consultation solutions to help any homeowner find the speakers that work best for their specific situation and home. Give us a call at 240-242-7272 and we can talk about your plans for a home theater and how we can help create the most perfect -- and acoustically pleasing -- space possible. 

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