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Thread: What is a hometheater?

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    M.P.S.E /AES/SMPTE member Sir Terrence the Terrible's Avatar
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    What is a hometheater?

    This was a question I was asked after one of my colleagues came back from visiting a friends house. His friend had a 50" plasma and a 5.1 system set up in his living room, and he called it his "hometheater". I said jokingly "no, that is a television and a 5.1 speaker system, not a hometheater". This started a discussion about just what constitutes a hometheater system, and a great topic to discuss.

    To me, a hometheater system really is a shrunken professional movie theater. It has to have a projector and screen, or a 65"+ RPTV if the room is smaller. The room must be dedicated to getting the best out of the audio and video(so it must be a dedicated room). It can have a 5.1 or 7.1 system. I think any television smaller than 65" is not sufficient enough to make the system a hometheater. I don't think a system in a living room is a hometheater - as it cannot be optimized in that space.

    So, what is a hometheater to you?
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    << From PCMAg
    Practical Home Theater For Everyone

    However, in reality, home theater as actually applied in most homes, does not consist of an expensive custom installation, nor a lot of money. A home theater can be something as simple as a 27-inch TV, a basic DVD player and/or HiFi VCR, inexpensive stereo or AV receiver, and speakers. Whatever type of system you end up with, as long as it provides the entertainment options you need and like, then it is your "Home Theater". You can have a home theater in just about any room of the house, a small apartment, office, dorm, or even outside. The option(s) you choose are up to you.>>


    For those of us that do not have cash falling out of our pockets, the above definition is sufficient.

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    M.P.S.E /AES/SMPTE member Sir Terrence the Terrible's Avatar
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    Sorry, but a PC magazine does not know jack about hometheater - they know about PC's. The wouldn't know a hometheater from a fireplace, and this explaination of HT shows they don't emphasize some level of quality. We are past VCR, past DVD players, and certainly past a 27" television.
    Sir Terrence

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    I found the same definition over and over.

    You and all your money have one definition, the rest of us have another. We deal with what we can put together. We all don't have 3 houses and a warehouse full of gear like some do.

    A home theater is a place to watch movies the way you enjoy them and not have to go to a B&M theater. Period!

    Not sure what you are fishing for besides acknowledgement that you are a little better off then the rest of us.

  5. #5
    M.P.S.E /AES/SMPTE member Sir Terrence the Terrible's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Hyfi View Post
    I found the same definition over and over.

    You and all your money have one definition, the rest of us have another. We deal with what we can put together. We all don't have 3 houses and a warehouse full of gear like some do.

    A home theater is a place to watch movies the way you enjoy them and not have to go to a B&M theater. Period!

    Not sure what you are fishing for besides acknowledgement that you are a little better off then the rest of us.
    It would take your stupid ass to come up with this bull$hit. This is not about me idiot, it is about what constitutes a hometheater. I have stated what I think a hometheater is, and it is not what marketing people, or people re-inventing what it is.

    A hometheater is just what the names states - a theater in your home. Your living room is not a theater, and neither is your bedroom. The word hometheater came from people who could afford to create a theater in their home(projector, screen, and seats), and now it is used to describe just about anything.

    If you want to participate in this discussion fine. If you want to wreck this thread with your bull$hit, take it and that chip on your should somewhere else and screw yourself. I am looking for peoples personal opinions, not some definition taken from a online PC mag.

    If you don't have a dedicated room, then call your system what it is. It is a 5.1 speaker system with a television set in your living room. What is the shame with that?
    Last edited by Sir Terrence the Terrible; 11-12-2012 at 05:07 PM.
    Sir Terrence

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    6 custom CAL amps for subs
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    18 custom 3 way horn DSP hybrid surround/ceiling speakers
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    Can you guys hold on for a few minutes? I have to run to the store for popcorn and beer...

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    Quote Originally Posted by Mr T
    It would take your stupid ass to come up with this bull$hit. This is not about me idiot, it is about what constitutes a hometheater. I have stated what I think a hometheater is, and it is not what marketing people, or people re-inventing what it is.

    A hometheater is just what the names states - a theater in your home. Your living room is not a theater, and neither is your bedroom. The word hometheater came from people who could afford to create a theater in their home(projector, screen, and seats), and now it is used to describe just about anything.

    If you want to participate in this discussion fine. If you want to wreck this thread with your bull$hit, take it and that chip on your should somewhere else and screw yourself. I am looking for peoples personal opinions, not some definition taken from a online PC mag.

    If you don't have a dedicated room, then call your system what it is. It is a 5.1 speaker system with a television set in your living room. What is the shame with that?
    Keep showing us who you really are, a Cyber Bully who can't go 3 posts without name calling and trying to look oh so superior.

    Since you already know what the definition is why ask such a question if when answered, you resort to name calling?

    Quote Originally Posted by Mr T
    So, what is a hometheater to you?
    Be careful how the rest of you answer this one. There is only one correct answer and Mr T already has it. Answer wrong and be treated poorly as usual.

    Cry to the Mods again or choose to ignore me but I will post wherever I please and too bad if you can't deal with it.

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    "Home Theater" probably has become a marketing term to sell consumer electronics, however, most people do not have an extra room just for a theater so the HT has to be within an already designated room such as living or family room. I do agree a HT should have a large screen, I mean that's one of the main attractions, or criteria, of any theater. Personally most of my HT set ups have had better surround effects than what I've experienced at the theater. I do think there's a difference between watching movies and a theater experience but I suppose it's all relative since no set in stone definition exists.

  9. #9
    Charm Thai™
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    If someone invites me over to watch a movie on her/his "home theater" the only absolute requirement I have come to expect is some sort of external speaker system attached to a viewing screen be it a tv or projection screen. For me the term home theater is very nebulous because I've heard people with a couple externally powered speakers connected to a tv as well as people with a full blown dedicated movie screen and a jillion speakers all refer to their system as a home theater.

    Doesn't bother me either way. Only thing that would bug me is if someone only had a tv and a bag of popcorn then referred to that as a home theater.

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    I only have a 52" Sony XBR, but consider my setup a Home Theater. It's in a dedicated 12.5'x 25' (it's one room but half is 10'x 13 the other 12.5'x12') which is better sonically since the long axis isn't twice the short axis). I have two different systems setup, a Legacy Focus/Emotiva system and a Sony STR-D5300ES/Klipsch Kg4 system). Each has it's own sonic advantages. In the room I also have several smaller 5.1 systems stored which I listen to occasionally. I have an Emotiva ERM-1/ERD-1 system, a B&W LM1/VM1 system, a Scandyna Minipod system, PSB Intro (Alpha) system and a Klipsch B2/KV3 system. Each with their specific sound. Except for having two closets in the room it's purely dedicated to Home Theater and Music. Since I sit only about 10' from the screen a larger screen wasn't necessary. I haven't gone to the trouble of having the room sonically treated. I have two 5'x6' shelves to store my CDs, DVDs and BDs which pretty much treats the back of the room. With couches and carpet to treat the front it balances the room from reflections. It's dedicated for Home Theater and Music, but still liveable.

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    Shostakovich fan Feanor's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sir Terrence the Terrible View Post
    ...
    To me, a hometheater system really is a shrunken professional movie theater. It has to have a projector and screen, or a 65"+ RPTV if the room is smaller. The room must be dedicated to getting the best out of the audio and video(so it must be a dedicated room). It can have a 5.1 or 7.1 system. I think any television smaller than 65" is not sufficient enough to make the system a hometheater. I don't think a system in a living room is a hometheater - as it cannot be optimized in that space.

    So, what is a hometheater to you?
    Your definition of what is HT is pretty up-market. From your perspective as a professional it makes good sense. However to the rest of us who like to watch movies on our TV + 5.1 sound systems, we some time label our system "HT" because that's how we use them.

    More importantly, the likes of BestBuy would probably hate to give up the term "home theater" as they apply it to lessor systems of the type they typically sell.

    OTOH custom installers probably take you POV.

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    Quote Originally Posted by RoyY51 View Post
    Can you guys hold on for a few minutes? I have to run to the store for popcorn and beer...
    You may want to get Season Tickets

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    Not that he needs it, but I want to come to Sir TT's defense for a minute. Nearly 10 years ago, I joined this forum as a young college kid who was fascinated with surround sound. I was a TV/Film major at a prominent film school, and the info I received from TT (both directly and indirectly) proved to be INCREDIBLY valuable. Soon after graduating, I started a career in post-production that ultimately led to positions in the Home Entertainment Production Departments of a major Hollywood studio, TV Network, as well as one network that “isn't quite TV...” At this point, I’ve produced hundreds of DVD and Blu-ray titles for both US and international release. I mention this for no other reason than to make it clear that I’m quite qualified to speak on all issues related to “home theater,” or whatever else you’d like to dub the technologies that bring audio/video content into your home.

    Anyone working in this industry knows that the hours can be pretty intense, and as such, I haven't posted a message in probably close to 6 years. But during that period, I've checked-in on an almost daily basis to stay up-to-date, and to see what's on the mind of today's consumers. I can’t tell you how often I see misinformation posted here (and everywhere for that matter…), and the only person that consistently delivers the facts is Sir TT. The guy knows his stuff, people. PERIOD. These debates about LED vs. Plasma, 1080p vs. 4k/8k, etc… are all ridiculous. There simply isn’t a debate when it comes to a lot of this stuff, and you have an AMAZING resource here at your disposal to answer any questions you may have. Sure, people can perceive things differently, and as such, have their own preferences. But this stems from either personal bias, or genuine medical issues that prohibit one from seeing/hearing the benefits of product “a” over product “b.” At the end of the day, facts are facts, and TT’s word is damn near HT gospel.

    It’s silly how people’s personal insecurities manage to come out even on a home theater forum – enough already! I’m not going to get caught up in these stupid little “wars.” Otherwise, I wouldn’t have enough time to finish the working on the content that ultimately leads to all of these fights

    Sir TT – I just want to say “thank you” for all of your contributions to this community. It’s unfortunate that some members are more focused on proving who has a bigger @@@@, rather than actually trying to learn something. But please know that your time has not been wasted, and that you’ve had a HUGE impact on at least one person’s career.

    Funkycold

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    Music Junkie E-Stat's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sir Terrence the Terrible View Post
    So, what is a hometheater to you?
    It's gotta have springy seats, sticky floors and a random kernel of popcorn here and there.

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    Shostakovich fan Feanor's Avatar
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    Quite right, Funkycold, Sir TtT doesn't need your endorsement. Many of us are quite well aware of his credentials and are quite willing to defer when it comes matters of objective knowledge.

    Two posts in 8 years? Humm. Nice to hear from you, and now you can slip back under your rock now.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Mr Peabody View Post
    I do think there's a difference between watching movies and a theater experience but I suppose it's all relative since no set in stone definition exists.
    IMO the definition of HT as a classic term is evolving. With computers (or media server to keep E-Stat happy ) and Smart TVs being integrated into HT, it had become more of media center than HT as there are too many distraction.

    One minute you could be watching a movie on bluray, and next minute you're surfing the net, and next minute streaming a TV show, answer an email meanwhile, and back to watch the rest of movie.

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    Suspended Smokey's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by E-Stat View Post
    It's gotta have springy seats, sticky floors and a random kernel of popcorn here and there.
    And exit sign above


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    [QUOTE=Two posts in 8 years? Humm. Nice to hear from you, and now you can slip back under your rock now.[/QUOTE]

    Wow, what a nice homecoming... This is exactly my point - Lines like that don't exactly provide incentive for members to want to be active in this community, nor does anyone learn from them. I wasn't attacking you or anyone specifically for that matter, so I'm not sure what you're so worked up about. My point was simply that there's a lot to be gained here, and it's a shame that so many of the threads are wasted or ended prematurely after being sidetracked by personal attacks or people speaking nonsense instead of opening up to the possibility that they might be wrong and taking the time to educate themselves. Call me crazy, but that doesn't sound like such a bad thing. As mentioned, this place was at one point very influential on my career development, and I just find it a bit depressing to watch how angry it has gotten over the years after seeing first-hand how much someone can gain.

    That said, it would be rather hypocritical for me to continue detouring this thread. So as requested, I'll slip back under my rock and reminisce of an earlier time not so long ago when people were sincerely interested in having real discussions and helping each other out.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Funkycold View Post
    Wow, what a nice homecoming...

    My point was simply that there's a lot to be gained here, and it's a shame that so many of the threads are wasted or ended prematurely after being sidetracked by personal attacks or people speaking nonsense instead of opening up to the possibility that they might be wrong and taking the time to educate themselves.
    Funkycold, sorry I do no remember you even though I have been posting here for close to 15 years or more. But, since you have not been around, and have not followed every thread, you obviously don't realize that what I bolded above IS the exact point being made.

    I would be a liar to say I never learned a thing from Mr.T. But at the same time, if you don't just agree with him, he starts calling you names, which is a personal attack. This is now become a standard pattern and many people have had enough.

    By all the Forum Rules, he should have been banned a long time ago, but again if you have not noticed, we have a small group of awesome Moderators who don't hardline all the rules unless it gets completely out of hand, which for the very same reasons it has of late.

    Stick around, have some fun, teach the rest of of us some of what you have learned. Maybe you just opened the door at the wrong time.

  20. #20
    Music Junkie E-Stat's Avatar
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    Lol !

    Quote Originally Posted by Smokey View Post
    And exit sign above
    I almost mentioned that!

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    Not me, Smokey, I try to watch a movie all the way without interruptions, or, distractions.

  22. #22
    RGA
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    I kind of agree with Sir T (what do you know). A true Home theater system - the ones that are professionally installed - something like in the pictures

    What is a hometheater?-bartels-1.jpg

    What is a hometheater?-region.jpg


    To me those systems tend to both sound better and look better.

    A theater experience is not just surround sound - it's "Big Screen, Big Sound" and a 27 inch TV doesn't cut it. Indeed, I often find big sound systems hooked to tiny ass TVs kind of laughable. I have a 37 inch TV but I sit about 5 feet from it. So in my apartment it's pretty massive. Much bigger than if you had a 65 inch screen and sat 20 feet away for example.

    But the marketed term is home theater and corporations most often set the lingo which then gets absorbed by the masses.

    I would keep the term as is - but maybe add the word "True" in front of "home theater" like those I pictured.

    And if we want real home theater you need to dump sticky pop on the floor, have a popcorn machine and some idiot with a cell phone lighting up the corners of your eyes and some crying kid or some putz who comments on every little thing, and of course the guy hacking up a lung because he's gone 9 minutes without a cigarette. Oh and you have to site way up front or 10 feet to the left or both. Theaters? You can keep em.

    PS: IMO TV is better anyway. I haven't seen a movie that competes with the likes of Dexter or Breaking Bad in terms of character depth and large story arcs. Obviously movies can't - they simply don't have enough time.

    The real advantage of movies was the special effects. When Star Wars came out it destroyed the rather pathetic special effects of TV science fiction. Dr. Who wound up being taken off the air it was so horrid in comparison in the 1980s and the first BattleStar was offed.

    However, TV still had story arcs as an advantage and now TV special effects are not embarrassed by films anymore - Dr. Who, Battlestar Gallactica, The Walking Dead etc are all quite visually strong. The Walking Dead pretty much competes with any zombie movie - betters most of them in terms of splatter effects and they manage it weekly. So now you have the visuals which are pretty much on par and better story arcs - it's free (with cable subscription) and so I have been less thrilled going to the movies. Most of them just seem so dumb. The ones that are not tend to be the ones with stories (no special effects) and these hardly need to be seen on a 65 inch screen - or for that matter hardly need 10 speakers. Having said that - if you love Avatar kind of stuff Home theater is definitely a better experience with surround, big screens etc. And so is BattleStar and the Walking Dead and Dr. Who. Like expensive stereos - TRUE home theater can enhance the experience. But to be fair a 37 inch screen and surround sound enhances the experience - not as much as TRUE home theater but it's still way way better than a 24 inch TV and no speakers.

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    Thanks RGA for your usual breif & concise response, LOL

  24. #24
    M.P.S.E /AES/SMPTE member Sir Terrence the Terrible's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Hyfi View Post
    Keep showing us who you really are, a Cyber Bully who can't go 3 posts without name calling and trying to look oh so superior.
    Hyfi, you need a diaper change. All this crying and boohooing is boring as heck since I have already done my share of diaper changing. You seem to have a victims mentality. Really, a cyberbully? Are you a kid or an adult?

    Get a baby sitter.

    Since you already know what the definition is why ask such a question if when answered, you resort to name calling?



    Be careful how the rest of you answer this one. There is only one correct answer and Mr T already has it. Answer wrong and be treated poorly as usual.
    I guess the victim mentality suits you well. When it comes to Hometheater, there is only one answer that is correct.

    Cry to the Mods again or choose to ignore me but I will post wherever I please and too bad if you can't deal with it.
    Why would I cry to the mods? It is not worth it to me - you are just an fool anyway.
    Besides, I don't mind pointing out an idiot when I see one.(finger points at you)
    Last edited by Sir Terrence the Terrible; 11-17-2012 at 05:31 PM.
    Sir Terrence

    Titan Reference 3D 1080p projector
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    Datastat RS20I audio/video processor 12.4 audio setup
    9 Onkyo M-5099 power amp
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    9 Onkyo M-508 power amp
    6 custom CAL amps for subs
    3 custom 3 way horn DSP hybrid monitors
    18 custom 3 way horn DSP hybrid surround/ceiling speakers
    2 custom 15" sealed FFEC servo subs
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    THX Style Baffle wall

  25. #25
    M.P.S.E /AES/SMPTE member Sir Terrence the Terrible's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mr Peabody View Post
    "Home Theater" probably has become a marketing term to sell consumer electronics, however, most people do not have an extra room just for a theater so the HT has to be within an already designated room such as living or family room.
    Unfortunately, a living room or multipurpose room can not be considered a hometheater. A hometheater is not just equipment, it is equipment, room, and environment.


    I do agree a HT should have a large screen, I mean that's one of the main attractions, or criteria, of any theater. Personally most of my HT set ups have had better surround effects than what I've experienced at the theater. I do think there's a difference between watching movies and a theater experience but I suppose it's all relative since no set in stone definition exists.
    There was a definition, and then it was changed for marketing purposes.
    Sir Terrence

    Titan Reference 3D 1080p projector
    200" SI Black Diamond II screen
    Oppo BDP-103D
    Datastat RS20I audio/video processor 12.4 audio setup
    9 Onkyo M-5099 power amp
    9 Onkyo M-510 power amp
    9 Onkyo M-508 power amp
    6 custom CAL amps for subs
    3 custom 3 way horn DSP hybrid monitors
    18 custom 3 way horn DSP hybrid surround/ceiling speakers
    2 custom 15" sealed FFEC servo subs
    4 custom 15" H-PAS FFEC servo subs
    THX Style Baffle wall

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