Starpower Buyer’s Guide: Home Sound System

Sonos home sound systemWhen you invest in improving your home by adding a big screen TV or a projector, custom seating, and more, it only makes sense to want the best sound system for your home theater. After all, what good is a crisp and vibrant image if you aren’t getting rumbling bass and clear dialogue from your speaker setup? Watching your favorite movies on tiny built-in TV speakers isn’t the way they weren’t meant to be experienced. It’s certainly not what you imagine when you start creating a home theater.

The good news: putting together a Home Sound System that will blow you away is not hard at all. In fact, with the huge variety in terms of hardware and design options available today, it’s easier than ever. At Starpower, we’re excited for any opportunity to help homeowners design, install, and use sound systems that offer the cinematic quality you’ve imagined. To help get you started on the right path towards choosing the home stereo system components that will deliver the most satisfying experience when you watch movies or TV, check out the following buyer’s guide.

Network-Ready CD Audio ReceiverMake a Solid Receiver the Heart of Your Sound System

With a home theater setup, you can’t just connect audio cables directly from your output devices (such as a Blu-Ray player or a video game console) to the speakers and expect it to produce good sound. We’ll skip the science lesson but suffice to say a lot goes on behind the scenes. You’ll need something that can process all the different audio signals and send them out to the appropriate speakers. That something is a surround sound receiver — a box that sits in your media center and acts as a central hub for your all your A/V requirements.

Speaker quality matters, but so does receiver quality. You’ll want to choose a unit that can output sound to the various setups you may wish to use while also having plenty of inputs available for future expansion. Something called “passthrough” capability, which allows a signal to pass straight to your speakers without alteration — a useful feature when you don’t want to engage the entire surround sound system just to watch a few cute cat videos on YouTube. Be careful to avoid buying a stereo-only receiver, as that won’t help you sync up sound with the video.

Wired or Wireless? That is the Question

One reason many people avoid exploring the surround sound setups that deliver the best results is the mistaken belief that it will mean wires and cables crisscrossing your living room. Not only can the right installation make that a non-issue, but there are even hardware options today that can allow you to enjoy some degree of “wireless” sound. Note that you’ll still need to run power cables to an outlet for wireless speakers, but they don’t have an additional cable that must run back to the receiver. So, the question is simple: do you go for a wired setup, or a wireless surround sound system?

There are both pros and cons to wireless sound. On the plus side, they are more compact and easier to set up than other systems. They can also be more cost-effective in some cases while eliminating the need to mount speakers off the ground. On the other hand, objects can sometimes block wireless transmissions, and in very large rooms, they may not deliver the sound you want.

So, which is the right choice? The answer will depend on the size of your room and how much effort you want to put into installation. For the easiest setup and the most bang for your buck, though, today’s wireless systems available through Starpower are tough to beat.

Klipsch RP-402S Surround Sound - EbonyChoose the Surround Setup That Works Best for Your Home

2.1? 5.1? 7.2? What do all these numbers mean for your efforts? There are many different possible speaker arrangements for producing good sound, and these digits refer to the different types. Let’s use 2.1 as an example; this is a a great speaker setup, but not a surround sound system. There are two primary speakers, one each for the left and right channel respectively, with one subwoofer for producing the rich bass tones necessary to fill in the sound. That’s the 1 in 2.1. As you can guess, the other options include 5 speakers, 7 speakers, and even multiple subwoofers. How do you decide which to choose?

5.1 surround sound setups are ideal for most small to medium sized home theater rooms; they are easy to install, deliver punchy sound, and still achieve the “surround” effect. For larger spaces and theater owners who want to go all out, though, adding 7 or more speakers is the way to go. With such a setup, you’ll be able to take full advantage of multi-channel audio while creating sound that realistically pans from one side of the room to the other — and even around behind you.

Balancing Power and Function with Your Budget

It’s easy to go overboard when it comes to audio. With no shortage of high-end components, it is also easy to get locked into the “fear of better options,” where you worry that the best choices are the ones you aren’t buying. When assembling your home stereo system, therefore, it’s crucial that you develop a real sense of what your system should produce in terms of sound and volume. This is easier said than done, however; most homeowners don’t have a good sense of how loud speakers will be after installation. At Starpower, we can allow you to experience the most popular products in person before they ever make their way into your home. With our thorough demonstrations and deep product catalog, you can discover how to strike the right balance between budget and sound.

Explore the Best Solutions with StarpowerSurround Sound Ideas - Starpower

When you want to purchase a home stereo system that can offer the power and punch you need to complement a theater setup, it’s clear that you’ll need to harmonize several different elements. What if you aren’t sure what the acoustics of your room will support, or whether you should go wireless? What if you want recessed or hidden speakers?

The answer to all these questions and many more lies with Starpower. Our highly experienced team is not only well-versed in the latest technology, but we’re adept at installation, too. With a free visit to your home, we can take important measurements, gauge the acoustics of your space, and start you on the path towards a sound system you’ll love — and love to impress your friends with, too. Schedule a consultation with Starpower today when you contact us online or by phone.

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