What do I need to build my home theater room?

Episode 1353 (2:12:08)

James from California

James is in the process of building a home theater/recreation room combination. He's still building the walls, so wiring right now will be easy to do. Leo recommends not doing wireless, he should have everything wired. He should have wired internet to all of those devices as well. The room is 17' by 13', and the 17' wall has a fireplace in the middle with a TV above it. He plans to keep the TV there. The only negative to it is that it forces people to look up higher, but he has a reclining chair, so that makes it a little easier. The chatroom recommends checking out mantelmount.com for mounting the TV. The biggest TV he could use in that room would be a 65". At that size, he'll be looking at a 4K TV, and he should also make sure to get a TV with the UHD Premium spec. That's an industry standard that will give him HDR and guarantees he'll be compatible going forward with the content developed. He'll want to also get a UHD Blu-ray player.

Since he'll have a 4K TV, everything else should be 4K compatible as well. His A/V receiver should be able to handle 4K as well. Leo would look at a Denon A/V receiver for a reasonably priced option. James was looking at a Yamaha receiver with Dolby Atmos, and Leo says that would be excellent. He should just make sure that it can handle 4K.

As for speakers, it's a very subjective thing. Leo recommends listening to them first to see if he likes them before he buys. Even then, it's hard to tell because they might not be broken in, and he might end up listening to them in a showroom. James likes RLS speakers, so Leo says that would be a good option. Since his A/V receiver will have Dolby Atmos, he'll be buying many speakers. He'll have side speakers, back speakers, and a sub or possibly 2 subs. James says he might limit it to a 5.1.2 system. Leo says the really important speaker is the center channel one, so the dialog won't be buried.

James is thinking about putting the receiver in another room, or in a closet. Leo says he can do that, but then he'll need a different remote that isn't infrared line-of-sight. He'll need an RF based remote control. James is looking at a Logitech Harmony remote.

Scott Wilkinson really likes the LG OLED TVs, and Leo bought the B series which doesn't have 3D. He can get the 2016 model, but there may be a 2017 model coming out in the Spring. The LG OLEDs are far better than any LCD TV out there.

Leo recommends getting the Roku Ultra, which can do 4K. Roku has access to all of the major streaming platforms except for Apple. If he has any content from iTunes, he'll have to also get an Apple TV, although that is not currently 4K compatible.