Tag Archives: speakers

Five Things Every Home Theater Needs

Even visible speakers can be incorporated into your home decor.

Home theaters are becoming more popular as home theater technology gets better and better. Things like 3D televisions, 7.1 sound systems, and crisp video playback…a well-built home theater can be like having a private screening room. That said, though, there are things you need and things you don’t for your home theater, and what they are might surprise you.

Location, Location, Location
The first and most important step is deciding where everything will go. For example, placing your television behind a window will both block the sun in a room and draw undue attention to it, making it hard to watch and distracting. Putting it on a wall opposite the windows may make it difficult to watch during the day. Before buying and installing, do some measuring and thinking; properly placing an integrating your home theater into your home will mean fewer arguments and a happier home.

A Well-Built Amplifier With the Proper Wattage
The foundation of every home theater system is the amplifier. To understand why, you need to understand how speakers work. Essentially, all speakers really do is push air at certain frequencies that the electricity flowing in tells them to push at; but, the more air you want to push, and the more energetic the frequencies, the harder it is to push. An amplifier gives your speakers just the right amount of power; overpowering might trash the speakers, and underpowering can result in distortion. Pair your amp with your speakers carefully, and your theater will sound that much better.

Hiding Places
It’s very rare that you want your home theater to dominate the room, but if you put a gigantic television and thumping sound system into your living room, it’ll draw attention even if you don’t turn it on. It doesn’t help that many systems are designed to look cool, not blend into your home décor. Look into touches like home automation that tucks screens and speakers away, or building a cabinet into the wall that lets you keep your living room as a multipurpose space.

This might be a bit of overkill.

Proper Speaker Placement
Getting perfect sound requires placing your speakers properly. There’s a specific place in each room where the speakers and the acoustics align to create a perfect listening spot. It may not always be ideal to create this, but where possible, you should try to do so. Beyond that, think about how the space will be used; will you and your friends be watching and discussing TV shows and sports games? Will you be sitting in appreciative silence watching a movie? Place your speakers for the best effect to get the most out of your system.

Hidden Cables
Unfortunately, making all home theater technology wireless is a work in progress; there aren’t really any solutions at the moment that rival their wired cousins. That means you’ll need to choose wires and cables carefully, and also look for solutions to hide them. One popular method of organizing and tucking cables away is to thread them through the walls; that way, you have fully wired speakers, but also flawless home décor. If that’s not an option, look for cables that can be painted over, or consider covering them with electrical cord covers; there are quite a few available at your local hardware store.

Whichever methods you choose, remember that you can have a home theater in your home without it dominating, and a well-designed theater makes a home that much better. Happy shopping!

Photo credits: Viet Hoang,


5 Phenomenal Speakers

Finding good speakers is relatively easy these days. Better driver technology, enclosure design and advances in the study of acoustics mean that even mass-produced speakers have better sound than speakers even a few years ago. That doesn’t mean, however, that there isn’t still a desire to take it to the very, very top, like these five.

Organic Harmony from Shape Audio

Enjoy simple elegance.

The Organic Harmony from Shape Audio as inspired by organic design for the overall construction, as you might have guessed. In fact, as speakers, they’re fairly impressive. They can put out two channels of audio from the one housing, achieved largely through a two-inch tweeter and 5-inch mid firing away from each other, and an 8-inch woofer firing downwards. The baffle has to be specially 3D printed. It’s that elaborate.

If you want them, you’d better be prepared to pay. The bronze units were $44,000, the silver ran $440,000, and the 18K solid gold cost over $6 million. There was only one set of the gold speakers ever made.

Kharma Grand Enigma

Fit for a palace.

Kharma is well known for their expensive speakers, but those speakers are worth every penny. Or, at least, the individual who commissioned the Grand Enigma from them thought so. Carefully built to the highest standards, only one of these were ever made and they cost $1 million. Good thing they weren’t built out of solid gold!

Transmission Audio “Ultimate”

Choose a more modern system.

If $6 million or more is just a little too rich for your blood, we understand. If you’re on slightly more of a budget, you can reach out to Transmission Audio, widely considered one of the best speaker manufacturers on the planet. Based out of Sweden, the only way to get their products is to contact them. You can discuss the job, explain what you want, and they’ll happily build your speaker system to order.

Of course, this runs an average of $2 million, so you might want to be very precise about your acoustics. It’s pretty hard to get a refund.

Wisdom Audio’s Infinite Wisdom Grande

From modern to contemporary.

Unlike a lot of these speakers, the Infinite Wisdom Grande from Wisdom Audio isn’t built to show off you’ve got a lot of disposable income. No, these are workhorse speakers, designed specifically for enormous environments such as palaces, ballrooms, and other locations where events are held and some JBLs on stands just aren’t going to cut it. The whole system weighs two tons, and each speaker in the system has a total of twenty-four drivers.

It’s also cheap. Well, sort of. The whole set up will run you roughly $700,000, which, if you think about it, is a bit of a deal when you break it down per driver!

Backes And Muller BM 100

Why not make your speakers a piece of art?

The only speaker on here to have its own website, the look is driven entirely by getting the sound precisely correct, which is why this looks less like a speaker and more like modern art. But, hey, you can at least get a few for your home, at a relatively thrifty $630,000.

The great thing about these speakers is that design filters down. Eventually, these will be replaced by even more refined and technologically advanced speakers, as we move closer and closer to the ultimate goal: Perfect sound reproduction. Until then, maybe start saving.