Your home entertainment system doesn’t have to be the “focal point” in your home. While you and your family may spend a lot of time using the gaming system, watching movies or listening to music in a family room or media room, much of the equipment can be hidden from view until ready to be used.
While dedicated home theaters are great, most folks: a) don’t have the square footage for a separate home theater or, b) don’t want the sometimes cave-like atmosphere. We have installed home theater systems in countless “multi-purpose” rooms that are used for lounging, reading, billiards and more. This brings us to many not-so-good opinions about the black boxes required for your home entertainment system. Here are some tips for hiding your home theater equipment:
- Locate equipment in a closet or equipment room. This option makes it easy to have enough room and ventilation for equipment but usually takes some pre-planning with regard to the wiring.
- Have a cabinet built to house speakers and equipment. Working with a cabinet designer to have proper speaker placement and space for gear is always best. Typically, pre-made cabinets at furniture stores don’t work as well.
- Install a motorized lift for televisions. These can be placed in cabinets, under beds or even dropped down from ceilings – the cool factor is big here.
- Specialty artwork and frames for televisions. For wall-mounted flat panel televisions there are many options to cover the screen when not in use.
- Install a motorized screen. For rooms with a projector, a motorized screen that drops down is an easy install.
- Hide the home theater projector in a box or room behind the seating area. A nice feature that takes the projector from above your head to a nice out of the way place.
- Consider in-ceiling or in-wall speakers. Now pretty common, flush mounted speakers come in all ranges of sizes, shapes and performance levels. You can have them painted to match as well.
All of these options are ideal in a new-install environment but can also be retro-fitted to your existing system with a little creativity.