Why Invest in High End Surround Sound?


Hearing every little sound is important when you invest in a home theater system.

blog-2-768x512When you are looking into making a purchase, a surround sound speaker system is always a smart move. Take a look at some of the benefits of this investment:

  • Multiple Speakers – When you watch a movie through a surround sound system, you will be hearing the sound through multiple speakers. If it is mixed properly and is available in surround sound, you’ll be full immersed in the sounds happening on the screen as if they are happening around you.
  • Hear More Frequencies – Did you ever wonder what the “.1” in 5.1, 6.1, or 7.1 surround sound is? That’s the subwoofer. This additional speaker is there to play the lower frequencies that you wouldn’t hear in typical 2-channel sound systems – allowing you to both hear and feel the action.
  • Moveable Systems – Just because you set up the speakers a certain way, it does not mean that you have to keep them in the same space! The wonderful thing about any system is that you can move the speakers as needed, giving you complete control over your home theater experience.

When you are prepared to invest in new surround sound home theater systems, you can rest assured that the team and SpaceCoast AV can help you. We offer both commercial and residential system services in East Central Florida area and the surrounding areas.

 

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5 Reasons Cinemas are losing the Lime Light


VARIOUSDespite the fact that the movie industry, in its entirety, is grossing more money now than ever before, box office sales are actually declining and movie theater profits are the lowest they’ve been thus far. In other words, people are still watching movies, but they aren’t going to the nearest theater to do it.

In a recent survey, a panel of movie-goers were asked as to why they haven’t been going to the movies as much as they used to. The top five reasons were:

  1. Ticket prices don’t equal worth
  2. Prefer movies “on my own schedule”
  3. Can see movies at home shortly after theatrical release
  4. Too many people causing distractions
  5. Can’t eat my own food

Gone are the days…
In the past, when someone wanted to “experience” a movie, not just watch it, they had no choice but to go to the nearest theater in order to make that happen. After all, in order for someone to truly have an experience when they watch a movie, the following must be incorporated: Large TV or Screen, Surround Sound, acceptable Acoustics. Right?

So, what about the people who have chosen not to go to the movie theaters? True…they now wait for the release and pay less, they watch when they want and without distraction. Plus, they get to eat whatever they want when they do it. At first glance, it appears that the problem has been solved, but what about “the experience”? Just because someone doesn’t want to go to the movie theater anymore doesn’t mean that they have to sacrifice having the movie theater “experience”.

I doubt I can afford a home theater.”
It’s more affordable than you think. There are a handful of key components that must be incorporated in order for something to be considered a home theater: Visual Source, Speakers, a Subwoofer, Acoustics Treatment, and Lighting. Custom Audio Video’s Sales Team will be happy to go into more detail with you.

I don’t think I have the space for a home theater in my house.”
You would be surprised! If you have a living room with walls, then you have the space for a home theater. Your screen doesn’t have to be the same size as the ones found in movie theaters. In fact, one of the most critical components of any successful home theater setup is the proper location and configuration of the surround sound speakers…not the size of the screen or room.

What makes the speakers so important?”
Speakers ignite a multiple of our senses, and because of that, they play a crucial role in the home theater. In order to properly experience a movie, one should have a minimum of five speakers set up in their home theater: left of TV, center, right of TV, left of viewer, and right of viewer.

Here’s an example:
You are watching a movie. In this particular scene, it is raining and the main character is standing on the sidewalk getting drenched. Suddenly, a car loudly passes from left to right and splashes her.

Now…if you have surround sound speakers, you will hear the rain pouring from behind you. When the car passes from left to right, the sound of it will move through the left speaker and to the right.

Why do acoustics play a role in making a home theater?”
The word Acoustic is defined as “the way that sound is heard in a room, as a result of the room’s shape and size.”

Generally speaking, a house isn’t usually designed with acoustics in mind. Because sound naturally bounces, your home theater will have to be acoustically treated in order for your surround sound to work like it’s supposed to. We can strategically place acoustic panels within your theater which will eliminate the echoes that muddle music and speech. While doing so, the speakers will be calibrated accordingly, thus creating a miniature movie-theater for you to enjoy.

Why is lighting a component if you are supposed to watch a movie in the dark?”
When we think of a home theater, we imagine a dark, quiet space where the screen is the only illuminated object in the room. While movies always look best in the dark, your home theater may not always be used for watching movies. If your fixtures are professionally installed and linked to your home automation system, you’ll be able to use the home theater as a multi-functioning space.

For instance, if you want to watch the big game, won’t you need a few lights on so you can see the snacks and exchange high-fives with your friends? Also, some nights you may want to use your home theater just for the speakers and lighting. Music playing within the background at your party will never sound better than coming from the surround sound speakers. Purposeful lighting will supply the ambiance in that scenario.

Now are the days…
You don’t have to go down the street to the movie theater if you don’t want to. You don’t have to forfeit the movie “experience” nor accept mediocrity because of it either. You deserve the best and you can have the best without even leaving home.

Having a home theater is one ticket price that’s definitely equal to its worth.

What’s the Point of HDMI?


TV-rear-panel

With HDMI, it’s about copy protection. But let’s first address that coax jack. The coaxial cable input on a TV’s back panel is provided to connect an antenna designed to pull in digital TV broadcasts. A tuner inside the TV then demodulates the signal, stripping audio/video from the radio frequency carrier. Next, the MPEG-compressed A/V stream is decoded so that your TV can display it.

With digital cable, the process is similar, except a different modulation method is used to convey signals over the cable TV system’s wired network to your cable box.

Once HD signals are decoded by your cable, satellite, or other-type receiver, the uncompressed video and audio gets routed to an HDMI output. Those signals are then encrypted using a DRM (Digital Rights Management) scheme called HDCP (High-bandwidth Digital Content Protection). For the source device to pass the signals, a handshake must occur with he receiving device. This process creates a secure digital connection that prevents any content from being copied.

 

 

Got a tech question for SpaceCoast Audio Visual? Email us at  ask_the_AV_Pros@scavcom.com

SpaceCoast AV: Feeding Children Everywhere


20170325_120511SpaceCoast AV Communications spent time this weekend taking part in Feed the Children Everywhere.

This was an incredibly fun way to work with others in our local community and provide prepackaged, vacuum sealed meals for hungry children right here in Brevard. All together all who participated packaged something like 40,000 delicious Red Lentil Jambalaya meals.

Pictured above, SpaceCoast AV President, Chris Lacuesta and Abby, from Acts II ministries in between packaging sessions.

This is an all-natural, non-GMO, gluten-free and vegan meal ensuring highest levels of nutrition.

Getting Ready for the Big Game: A 3-Step Plan Are


football-game-1Are you ready for the Big Game? Ready to take in all its glory as if you were in the stands sitting on the edge of your seat immersed in the action? Ready to impress family and friends with a jaw-dropping experience that leaves them, well…jealous?

And, no, we’re not talking about your awesome Kegerator or those hot, tangy, succulent wings everyone loves. We’re talking about a killer audio/video setup that not only “transports” you to the stadium but puts you on the field. A setup that let’s you feel the action – the bone-crunching thuds of a goal-to-go pileup, the brutal kidney-punch of a sideline takedown, the roar of the crowd when the announcer shouts “touchdown!”

The best of today’s home entertainment technology can get you closer to the game than ever before. And in some ways, a topnotch AV system can deliver an experience that’s better than being there. So if you’re tired of the small screen and tinny sound, it’s time to time to take things to the next level with an AV setup that will serve not only sports but also movies, music, and TV.

Here’s our three-step plan for upping your AV game.

1. TAKE A TOUR OF AV-LAND.

If it’s been a while since you’ve bought a TV or sound system, you might want to talk with one of our experts or pick up a magazine like Sound & Vision to get a feel for what’s new in AV. You’ll quickly see that a lot is going on.

If you’re serious about taking your AV game to the next level, find a home technology professional in your area and have him walk you through options in your price range. A pro will guide you through the maze of AV gear and present ideas on how to integrate it into your room – or hide it away.

2. GO FOR A BIG SCREEN.

And not just any screen but the biggest screen you can afford (as long as it’s not too big for the room you have in mind). Take a close look at the new 4K/Ultra HD sets, the best of which deliver stunning pictures at prices that are getting lower every day. OLED TVs – known for their vibrant, lifelike color – are also worth a serious look, but there are fewer options and they tend to be quite a bit more expensive.

If you have the physical space and budget to go bigger than, say, 70 inches, consider a theater-like projection setup where screen sizes start at 100 inches. There’s no better way to get in the game.

3. DON’T SKIMP ON THE SOUND.

Forget soundbars and cheap home-theater-in-a-box systems. Go for a bona fide surround-sound audio system with a full complement of speakers and a real subwoofer. For the best experience, you’ll want a 5.1 system, which means three front speakers – left, center, right – two rear surround speakers and a standalone subwoofer.

Speakers come in a wide variety of types and sizes, including models that can be mounted in (or on) the walls and ceiling for a stealth look. Professional guidance will go a long way here.

Following these few simple steps will put you on the path to an at-home game experience that you might not have imagined possible.

To learn more about home entertainment technology and options, consult a SpaceCoast AV professional today.

Two ways to Identify an “Expert”


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What is an expert? How do you define who an expert is and who is not? Merriam-Webster’s Dictionary defines an expert as, “having or showing special skill or knowledge because of what you have been taught or what you have experienced.”

With so many self-proclaimed experts advertising themselves as such, it could save you money and headache understanding exactly what an expert is… or is not. Keeping with our definition above, an expert should be able to show that a particular governing body has recognized a particular expertise. Secondly, many like to use the term specialize or specialization when advertising their services. In the case of “specializations” the question should be are the “experts” certified or do they carry a certification? Why is this important, you might ask? The answer to this question is simply that when someone is representing themselves or their business as a bonafide expert, there is usually a Code of Professional Conduct to which the person or group must adhere.

For example, SpaceCoast AV Communications engineering staff holds a CTS certification…Certified Technology Specialist. Not only that; but our AV technicians are continually expanding their industry and technical knowledge through specialized training on the latest AV equipment through our manufacture and vendor relationships. Infocomm and CEDIA are two of the governing bodies for the Audio Visual Technology Integration Industry. Infocomm defines the CTS certification as one who performs general technology solution tasks by creating, operating and servicing AV solutions, while conducting AV management activities which provide for the best audiovisual resolutions of the client’s needs, both on time and within budget.

So the next time you are faced with an expert, either in AV or any other field, you might want to double check if they are a self-proclaimed expert or an expert in their field that has been recognized by a governing body and if indeed they are specialized in their specializations!

Behind the Curtain of Wireless Speakers


Wireless Home Theater Speaker Requirements
Behind-the-Curtain

In a traditional wired speaker setup, both the soundtrack impulses and the power needed to make the loudspeaker work are passed through speaker wire connections from an amplifier.

 
However, in a wireless speaker setup, a transmitter is typically required to transmit the needed audio signals, and a receiver needs to be used to receive the wirelessly transmitted audio signals.
In this type of setup, the transmitter will need to be physically connected to preamp outputs on a receiver, or, in the case where you have a packaged home theater system that incorporates a built-in or plug-in wireless transmitter. This transmitter then sends the music/movie soundtrack information to a speaker or secondary amplifier that has a built-in wireless receiver.
However, another connection is needed to complete the process—power. Since power cannot be transmitted wirelessly, in order to produce the audio signal that is wirelessly transmitted so you can actually hear it, the speaker needs additional power in order to work.
What this means that the speaker still has to be physically attached to a power source and an amplifier. The amplifier may be built right into the speaker housing or, in some cases, the speakers are physically attached with speaker wire to an external amplifier that is powered by batteries or plugged into the house AC power source. Obviously, the battery option severely limits the ability of a wireless speaker to output adequate power over a long period of time.
When Wireless Is Not Really Wireless
One way that so-called wireless speakers are applied in some Home-Theater-in-a-Box Systems that tout wireless surround speakers is they simply have a separate amplifier module for the surround speakers.
In other words, the main receiver unit has a built-in amplifier that physically connects to the left, center, and right front speakers, but has a transmitter that sends the surround sound signals to another amplifier module that is placed in the back of the room. The surround speakers are then connected by wire to the second amplifier module in the back of the room. In other words, you have not eliminated any wires, you have just relocated where they go. Of course, the second amplifier still needs to be connected to an AC power outlet, so you have actually added that.
So, in a wireless speaker setup, you may have eliminated the long wires that typically go from the signal source, such as a stereo or home theater receiver, but you still need to connect the so-called wireless speaker to its own power source, and, in most cases, a secondary amplifier module, in order for it to actually produce sound.
This can also limit speaker placement as the distance from an available AC power outlet then becomes a major concern. You may still need a rather long AC power cord if a convenient AC outlet is not nearby.