Terry Culhane / Tripod Audio      (413) 575-9699

Home Theater Rooms

The impact of a well done home theater room is simply stunning. These systems elevate movies, sporting events, and even prime time television to an entirely new level of emotional impact. With high definition, large screen televisions becoming more common, and digital 5.1 soundtracks; directors and production teams are creating a visual and an auditory environment that can be simply magical.

Thinking back to projects we've completed during the past several years, our customers often had several motives for building a theater system. The most common ones included:

In every project the hope was to create a space where family and friends would enjoy getting together. Sometimes only one person may have wanted the system initially, but our experience has been that after getting to know their new system, everyone in the family loves their theater!

As we approach these projects, our design goals are simple. Each and every system must:

  1. Be easy and fun to use
  2. Blend seamlessly with your decor
  3. Be extremely reliable

For your long term satisfaction, these three requirements are more critical than any of the technical details. To phrase it a little differently, a technically awesome system, that's also complicated and difficult to use, will always be a problem. We know that, and we can help!

Front Projection Systems

These are the Cadillac systems - top of the line. In a typical family room the impact of a good sound system and a 100” picture is astonishing. These systems include a video projector and a separate movie screen. We try to hide the projector on a shelf or mount it up on the ceiling, and often we install a motorized screen that retracts when the system isn't being used.

Projector technology has improved incredibly in the past several years. Most of the recent projectors have begun to use DLP digital projection chips to create the image. As production has ramped up, prices have absolutely plunged. The enclosures are much smaller, the fans are whisper quiet, and the picture quality has improved dramatically. In particular, the latest DLP video "engine" from Texas Instruments, called the Dark Chip/HD3, has to be considered a breakthrough. The 1080P version of this chip has just been released, and it's a true HDTV projection chip that's capable of throwing a bright, crystal clear image across even large rooms.

Technical Info

If you are interested in a more through discussion of the latest technology, here are some informative, very readable articles. And of course you can always give us a call.

These three topics are inter-related, and they invariably overlap somewhat. But if you're interested in “looking under the hood”, they may be helpful.

Smaller Systems

The clue is in the name - surround sound. It's all about the sound. We can turn any high quality TV into a surround sound, mini-theater by focusing on the amplifier and the speakers. For some families, in many rooms, this is just what's needed. After hearing demonstrations in big stores, many people are afraid that surround sound means booming bass and loud noises. This is definitely not the case! Properly adjusted surround sound should mean better speech intelligibility and a delicate presentation of the acoustic environment created by the director of the program.

System Calibration and Set-Up

The equipment we install is designed to last for many years. Getting the most from your new system requires screen calibration and room equalization using appropriate test equipment. When we're finished, the sound should be well balanced with clear dialog; the picture quality should be excellent from every seat in the room; and, perhaps most importantly, the system must be truly easy to use. This means that every system should have an intuitive remote control that consolidates all of the music, sound and video functions into one simple remote. We can meet all of these goals – we can do it well and at a competitive price!

Created by
Terry Culhane
© 2005-2016