Tag Archives: home theater palm beach gardens

Purchasing A Home Theater For You Home

A home theater is definitely a great system to have in any home.

home-theater-palm-beach-gardensTherefore, it is advisable to ensure that you make the right choice prior to making a purchase. One of the considerations to make is the size of your room and the size of the speakers for the home theater Palm Beach Gardens. The minimum number of the surround speakers is five. However, it would be important for you to do a little more research on the internet about this issue. It is also important to get a sizeable screen of at least 32”. However, you can buy a screen bigger than this, a HD and a 3D screen as well for optimal viewing.

Seagull Electronics carries all of the top brands such as:

Call today for more information on the best products for your home theater.

We will help you pick a brand that you will love the most. This is important in order to maintain your home decor and taste of lifestyle. When purchasing, do it at a reputable store. Such a store will sell you genuine devices and give you a warranty for a number of months or years. Seagull Electronics will make sure everything is under warranty.

Home Theater Systems : It’s time to enjoy life

Palm Beach Gardens home owners purchase home theater systems in order to have a good quality sound and to enjoy the incredible atmosphere when listening to music or watching movies at home.

home-theater-palm-beach-gardensIt is however sad when the system starts to hum. This is the most disturbing problem you can experience with your home theater system for your home in Palm Beach Gardens. You can never enjoy anything that you are listening to. Many people have been pulling their hair off trying to figure out where the problem could be coming from. Most often the humming problem is caused by a grounding problem. The three most common types of ground problems are: ground loops, improper grounding and lack of a ground all together. This can cost you all your comfort if you do not know where to begin so as to correct the problem.

Steps for troubleshooting and Eliminating Humming

  • The first step is to find where it is coming from.
  • You first disconnect the whole home theater system and note if the humming stops.
  • You then connect them back one at a time until the noise returns and then you have found where the noise is entering your system from.

 

At times noise could be induced into long cables by adjacent electrical wires. In this case it is also very easy to create a ground loop because the equipment is plunged in to two different, widely separated outlets on different electrical circuits. In most cases you can work on the noise problem by taking on a systematic approach the signal chain eliminating each piece of equipment as you go by.

 

Call Seagull Electronics today for more home theater tips (561) 624-0220.

 

Back To The Future: 3D Home Theater Basics

As the technology that drives 3D home theater systems begins to mature — becoming less “bleeding edge” and more mainstream by the day — it’s quickly turning into the most popular segment of home theater clients of ours are interested in. To help them (and you) out, we thought it would be worth a moment or two to go over the basics — what you need to get going into the third dimension in your home theater.

Your biggest investment will be in your 3D-enabled television or video projector. The monitor is often the most pricey part of any home theater system, but be ready to spend even more for the ability to handle 3D standards. The good news is that there is a standard — which means you won’t be locked into any single source of content.

Speaking of content, you’ll need a way to translate 3D signals for your monitor, whatever style you choose. That means you’ll need to replace your current players with 3D-enabled Blu-ray players, which again might cost more than standard boxes. If you’ve found 3D content on cable or satellite, you’re probably going to need a receiver there that can handle it as well — open the wallet yet again.

Finally, there’s the delicate matter of glasses. No one’s found an effective way to create 3D without them, but the good news is you won’t be sitting with goody red and blue paper masks on — you’ll need either passive polarized glasses or active shutter glasses. The former are relatively inexpensive, and come in a variety of fits; the latter can run upwards of $150. Regardless, many monitors come with proprietary glasses that may suit you just fine.

Seagull Electronics 3D Brands:

 

For help designing and installing a 3D home theater system, or to speak with the experts in home theater that Palm Beach County trusts most, contact us today!

Leveraging Light In Your Home Theater Palm Beach Gardens

home theater palm beach gardensWhen it comes to home theater  Palm Beach Gardens clients we’ve worked with over the years all agree it’s the finishing touches that tend to make all the difference; every good home theater Palm Beach Gardens will have a fantastic screen, high-powered speakers, and the best in source material choices, but a truly great home theater  Palm Beach Gardens takes the experience to the next level by ensuring the proper “mood”.

And when it comes to setting a “mood”, it’s hard to beat lighting. Indeed, one of the biggest reasons for getting into home automation Palm Beach Gardens clients cite is the desire to control their lighting environment. Pairing that ability with your home theater Palm Beach Gardens is the natural progression from that desire, and we’ve found ways over the years to really leverage lighting to its full potential when you go to watch a film at home.

We’ve talked in this space about using home automation to lower lights as a film begins — and raise them again when the credits roll — and we’ve shown you ideas on using automated shade control to optimize the ambient light. But another great idea we’ve seen is to use small, focused lights to accent great-looking speakers, memorabilia mounted on the walls or sitting on pedestals, or even to highlight architectural elements in the home theater space itself — such as a particular ledge, old-style molding or ceiling accents. Lighting can also be used for safety; there’s nothing more treacherous in the dark than an unfamiliar step or two, and well-positioned lights can make all the difference.

When you’re ready to work with the experts in automation, home theater Palm Beach Gardens and home electronics Palm Beach Gardens clients recommend to their friends more often than any other, give us a call! We look forward to hearing from you.

Ultrabright Outdoor Home Theater Weathers the Elements

Florida and Southern California are hotbeds for outdoor entertaining. New York? Not so much. But the fussy weather of the Northeast didn’t stop the owners of this outdoor space from integrating a reference-grade home theater system into their backyard. They made sure, with the help of their custom electronics professionals, that their expensive equipment would be well-protected from Mother Nature.

This was done through special programming of an RTI XP-8 control system and ingenious installation of the screen, projector and other components. The 14-foot-wide screen is motorized to roll up into a soffit underneath a balcony when no one is watching it. The owners can move the screen up and down by pressing buttons on a waterproof RTI remote or an iPad. However, if the owners’ weather station detects a wind velocity of over 8 miles per hour, the RTI system will automatically put the screen away and shut down the entire home theater system. When the wind dies down and the sun has set, the owners use the home theater again. This may sound a little restrictive but it’s for the best. These homeowners demanded only the best viewing experience from their outdoor theater. This can’t happen if the sunlight is blasting onto the screen. Therefore, the outdoor theater system can only be used after a certain time of day, as controlled by the astronomical clock inside the RTI XP-8 system.

In the dark, the outdoor theater screen can really shine. Its 14-foot-wide size guarantees that no matter where everyone is hanging out, they can clearly see all the action. An ultrabright (6,000-ANSI lumen), ISF (Imaging Science Foundation)-calibrated projector from Digital Projection International (DPI) was put behind the outdoor theater screen in an attic space. That way it’s protected from the elements and hidden from view.

The family can hear the movie from the swimming pool as well as the patio because of the surround sound system that was installed.  The speakers perform as the front channels of the surround-sound system, and are able to be played loudly and without distortion. In order to contain the sound to the yard they’re angled downward from the eave of the house. Planter speakers are positioned throughout the outdoor theater area to preclude audio “dead spots” and to serve as the surrounds. No movie is worth listening to if you can’t feel and hear the bass, so three subwoofers were strategically planted in the yard. The speakers and subs are driven by an amplifier that pushs out 2,500 watts of calibrated power.

The home theater may take center stage in this backyard, but the RTI system controls a lot more than the A/V equipment. The motorized patio umbrellas, as well as all of the lights, can be operated from an RTI remote or iPad. The umbrellas are designed to catch and channel rainwater to an underground water drainage system. This is just one more step that was taken to protect the outdoor home theater equipment from the weather.

Streaming Home Theater: Welcome to the Future

The days of running to the corner rental store for a DVD or Blu-Ray are quickly fading; indeed, the days of simple walking across the room to choose from among a stack of discs may soon be fully behind us as well. That’s because the future of watching movies at home has arrived, and film buffs have discovered they no longer have to limit themselves to the selections they’ve found for themselves, or even what their local stores have to offer.

Content on-demand means home theaters can now stream high-definition video and audio selections into the home over the internet instantly, choosing from a nearly limitless number of titles offered by dozens of providers. Films and television episodes are available the moment they’re released, and can be viewed in whatever order and timeframe you choose; instead of conforming to the studio or network’s broadcast schedule “must see TV” now waits for you, not the other way around.

This brave new world offers a lot of benefits, but it’s important to ensure your existing system — or the home theater we’re helping you design — is ready for it. This means that in addition to using the highest quality and best-suited audio and visual equipment for your space and budget — e.g. high-definition displays and screens as well as exceptionally lifelike speakers  — you must be certain to have a sufficiently robust internet connect to support the high data rate inherent in streaming high-definition audio and video content . It’s also critical to make sure you’re incorporating a streaming device that can successfully decode that data and produce the best sound and picture possible — and are using cables that are rated for the high-bandwidth workload they’ll be under whenever you’re watching streaming movies or television.

Streaming content from the internet isn’t limited merely to films and TV; a variety of exceptional services have popped up to offer audio selections as well, at a level of quality suited to everything from casual music in the kitchen to audio sampling in the world’s finest listening rooms. Contact us today to discover how to expand your horizons streaming home theater and audio!

Seagull Electronics sells the right electronics. We don’t sell the stuff you’ll find in boxes at your local shopping mall. We design custom systems using some of the world’s best electronic components. Serving Tequesta, Juno Beach, Jupiter, Jupiter Island, Palm Beach Gardens, North Palm Beach, Singer Island, West Palm Beach, Palm Beach, Boynton Beach, Boca Raton, Delray Beach, Fort Lauderdale, Miami, and North Miami.

HOME THEATER DESIGN BASICS

HomeTheaterBasicsYou’re ready for a home theater set-up, and you’re quivering with excitement at the thought of a fully immersed movie experience right in your own home. But there’s that one BIG question:

Where do you begin?

There are so many things to consider, both technical and financial. For example, a home theater can cost anywhere from $1,000 to $25,000 — or more. Or that Amazon lists several hundred possibilities for home theater speakers. With so many options, setting up your home theater can be a head-spinning experience.

But even the most non-tech-savvy home theater newbie can do a whole lot to accentuate their home theater experience, no matter what the price range is. Here’s some things that you need to know.

THE ROOM

Most likely you know where your home theater will be set up. It might be in the main living area, a spare bedroom or a basement where you can set up a movie palace complete with a popcorn machine. Each of these areas has special considerations in terms of comfort and sound quality. There are many common factors as well.

• Room shape. Square rooms tend to produce odd harmonic distortions. If you have the option, choose a rectangular room for your Home Theater.  Also, plan to place your televison and main speakers along a short wall for best sound projection in your Home Theater.

• Windows. The fewer windows in your Home Theater room, the better. Windows are hard surfaces that reflect sound-causing audio distortion. They also give off light that can produce reflections on your viewing surface.

Heavy curtains and shades may help, but that means closing blinds or drapes every time you turn on your home theater system. Opt for blackout-style window treatments, if you must, that track tight against window jambs to seal out light.

• Walls. If you’re tempted to staple inverted egg cartons all over the walls of your home theater room to try to muffle the sound, just relax. Regular drywall is a decent surface appropriate for home theater walls. However, break up spacious flat surfaces with furniture or drapes. Don’t add framed picture with glass as they are too reflective of sound and light.

Concrete or concrete block is a big no-no. If you’re setting up you Home Theater in a basement with concrete walls, think about installing studs and drywall.

Another option is acoustic wall panels designed specifically for home theaters. These panels are called “sound absorption” panels. They help to balance high and low frequencies to prevent echoes. Panels come as 1′ x 1′ or 2′ x 2′ squares costing anywhere from $4 to $20 per square foot.

Peel-and-stick carpet tiles are the budget-minded preference as they range from $2 to $4. You just don’t want to end up with a room that looks like Lloyd and Harry’s shaggy van from Dumb and Dumber.

Remember decreasing the sound works both ways. Controlling the sound in your home theater room means peace and quiet for the rest of your house.

• Flooring. Wall-to-wall carpet, with a cushy pad underneath, absorbs ambient sound and adds to the coziness of your home theater. Kids like to sprawl on the floor to watch movies

• Wall/room color. Paint your walls of your Home Theater as dark as you can stand them: Bright colors reflect light that’s particularly distracting when there’s a brightly lit scene on the screen. Choose eggshell or flat paints instead of gloss or semi-gloss..

Opt for colors such as neutral browns, tans or olive. Stronger colors, like red and blue, will give an odd cast to any ambient light in the Home Theater and may affect the colors you see on your screen.

THE SOUND

Speaker technology is remarkably advanced. Competition among top speaker manufacturers has helped turn home theater sound reproduction into a fine art. This means that a system you choose for your home theater is likely to be of very high quality.

Most home theater speaker systems (and movie soundtracks) are designed to provide specific sounds from specific areas of your listening environment. When a train goes thundering through a scene, you hear the sound move from one side to the other. However, speakers labeled as bipole or dipole aren’t compatible with this essential feature of home theater, so check before you buy.

• Speaker placement. A typical home theater features 5.1 surround sound, which means there are five full-range speakers and one low-range subwoofer. Place three speakers and the subwoofer toward the front of the Home Theater room, and the two remaining speakers on either side and slightly behind your viewing position. Keep speakers at least 20 inches from your Home Theater walls.

Each room is unique, and the best sound for you may come only after experimenting with your speaker placement. Luckily, speakers are moveable.

• Ideal distance. In a perfect world, your ears would be equal distance from each speaker in your Home Theater room. Seeing as your ears are on opposite sides of your head, it’s safe to say you won’t ever acquire this kind of perfection. Nonetheless, come as close to that target as possible.

Some speakers — certainly your subwoofer — will have individual volume controls you can fine-tune. More refined speakers provide millisecond adjustments, called delays, that time sound projection from each speaker so that everything makes it to your ears at precisely the same instant.  This is a handy feature for large Home Theater rooms with speakers at various distances.

Audioholics Online A/V Magazine even gives a formula: a 1 millisecond delay equates to 1.1 feet of distance. A speaker 5.5 more feet away from your head than your other speakers would require an advance setting of 5 milliseconds.

• Playing center field. Of all your speakers in your Home Theater, your center front speaker is probably the most influential. It is in charge of projecting sound directly from the screen. This is important mainly for dialogue. You don’t want to see the actors talking in front of you while the sound of their voices is coming from the side.

The center speaker shouldn’t be downgraded in your home theater budget. This speaker can sometimes be overshadowed by the tower speakers that are skirting it. Spend time adjusting your center speaker so that dialogue seems to come directly from your display.

• Woof, woof. Your subwoofer goes up front in your Home Theater. There’s only one, so you decide which side to put it on. The low bass ranges reproduced by a subwoofer will go through your Home Theater room, so angle is not as relevant as with the other speakers. A corner spot helps distribute your subwoofer’s sound evenly but, as with all components, experiment with a variety of positions before settling on the perfect location.

VIEWING

The forerunner of any home theater set-up is a high-definition display screen. The temptation is to balance size with increased viewing pleasure, but there are limits to this. You want to be immersed in the experience, but you don’t want a display so big that you have to move your head back and forth in an effort to take in all the action. You need to look for the right combination of display size and viewing angle.

Optimum angle. HDTV manufacturers and home theater experts place the best viewing angle between 30 to 40 degrees. Therefore, if you draw a triangle from the edges of the display to your nose, the angle that points at your head sould be 30 to 40 degrees. This angle lets you take in all the action with the least amount of eye movement.

If you stay the same distance from your display but move off to the side, the viewing angle gets smaller. If you plan to have multiple seating in your Home Theater room, make sure all the chairs have the best viewing angle.

Optimum distance. Ideal viewing angle can be expressed simply as distance as well.  This angle is usually 1.5 to 2.5 times the diagonal width of your screen. This means that you should sit no closer than 7.5 feet from a 60-inch-wide TV, and no more than 12.5 feet away. A viewing distance calculator can help when math skills falter.

This formula can work in reverse, too. If you know your viewing distance — say it’s 8 feet — then you can select an ideal display size. Eight feet is 96 inches. Divide by 2 (an average of 1.5 and 2.5) and you’ll get 48 inches. So the recommended HDTV display for your viewing distance in your Home Theater would be about 48 inches wide (measured diagonally).

Viewing height. The best viewing height in your Home Theater room is to have the center of the display screen at eye level. While that might seem primitive, some folks are tempted to elevate the display so that it hangs above their theater set-up. If you do raise your display, tilt it so that it faces the seating area in your Home Theater. It is even better if your seats recline so that you’re square to the display. Don’t forget to lift up your center speaker as well. When someone speaks you don’t want it to seem as if they’re talking out of the side of his mouth.

Theo Kalomirakis Talks Home Theater Design, Lighting and Home Automation

kalomirakisOne of the most well-known names in luxury home theater design is Theo Kalomirakis. He’s an influential leader in this industry.  His designs take a home theater beyond being merely a room with a big screen and lots of speakers, into a place with its own personality with lighting control and home automation.  The homeowners will have a total sensory experience from the moment they cross the threshold of their home theater room.

Kalomirakis-designed home theaters have won recognition from Electronic House Home of the Year Awards. Kalomirakis recently gave a presentation at Crestron’s Design Showroom in New York City.  He talked about common mistakes people make when building a home theater, the importance of home automation and how he approaches his designs with lighting control.

Q: Are there any frequent mistakes that people make when planning or building their home theaters?

A: It’s become like a little cottage industry for me, talking about the mistakes people make that started by mistakes I made. You don’t learn unless you make mistakes.

Mistake number 1: You get into a home where a designer is involved, and they have put the home theater seats on cement. This is not good for sound. If you don’t have carpeting on the floor the bass doesn’t hit you in the heart. It’s just like having a violin having its cavity filled with cement.

Mistake number 2, Risers: People think that if you separate the seats in your home theater by one step you’re going to see over other people’s heads. But it doesn’t work that way. If you have a screen that’s all the way to the floor, you’re going to have to do a lot more than one step. You’re going to have to do sightline risers, and this is something Home Theater Designers usually don’t know when designing a home theater room.

Mistake number 3: People think that if you put acoustical treatments on the wall, it seals the home theater from the rest of the house.  You have to be prepared to do both room isolation and room acoustics as they are two totally different things. These are the technical mistakes that I see people do. I’ve seen a lot of architectural mistakes, as well as made them myself in the past.  Hopefully I don’t make them anymore.

Q: What are some of the different enhancements that you can bring to a home theater that clients may not have thought of themselves?

A: I want to understand the design that goes into the rest of the house so that the home theater is not an ugly stepchild of the rest of the house. I believe that the home theater should follow the design direction of the home, but bring it to a new level without making it totally isolated.  I wouldn’t put an art deco home theater in the middle of a classical house.

What I think I bring to my clients is to educate them to actually justify the cost. I try to prevent them from making mistakes. I want them to be able to live in a home theater room that is heightening the experience without being so aesthetically different from what they have in the rest of the house.

You have to interview them. You have to learn what they like. Some people may not like the red curtain that seems to hang in every home theater room.  They may want something more neutral. You have to listen to them and be an interpreter of their dreams. I’m trying to tune into what they want and direct them into realizing their dreams without imposing myself on what they want to do.

Q: What can home automation bring to the experience of a home theater?

A: Everything. Without home automation you get a bunch of electronics that don’t communicate with each other.  There is nothing more frustrating for a client than having to hit ten remote controls to turn the lights down, open the curtain, or start the system. Home Automation is probably the most vital aspect for enjoying your home theater.

In my mind the most unique thing you can do is through lighting control. You can set up the levels of the home theater room so it’s lit up architecturally, not generically. In the home theater, lighting has to create drama. Home Automation allows you to create presets in the lighting control that gives the client the ability to see a variety of things.  Such as the slight illumination of the speaker grills when you watch a movie, or not seeing them at all, or having the step lights shown.

Q: At what point in the consultation does home automation customization enter the conversation with a client?

A: At the end of the project.  It’s very important that you separate all the lighting control sources in circuits. Step lights on one circuit, column lights on another, and curtain lights on yet another. So you can play with different levels, bringing certain lights up and down to the client’s desire. I don’t do that by myself. Each client will have different aesthetic preferences, so I sit down with them and ask them what levels they like their lights at and then have the Lighting Control Integrator hit the lighting control button and show them.

Q: Have you noticed any trends or shifts in what people are asking for lately?

A: There is more and more focus on multipurpose home theater rooms and less on dedicated home theaters because people are misinformed. Younger people, especially in the 20s and 30s, are used to experiencing media on tablets and iPhones. So for them a dedicated home theater room is not as important.  I see a trend toward not having a home theater in the center of the house. In my opinion you have to have both. You have to be able to watch your movies on a tablet while on a trip, but you don’t want to watch a movie on a tablet at home. And you don’t want to watch an epic movie on just a 50 or 60-inch TV. You want to be engrossed in the experience with home automation and lighting control in your home theater room.

Q: Do you have any advice for a reader who is interested in having a home theater installed but doesn’t know where to start?

A: Talk to their Home Theater and Home Automation designer. Designers are getting more perceptive about home theaters. Have someone take you by the hand and guide you through the process, show you what’s available with regards to lighting control and home automation for your home theater room.

Home Automation: Control your home automation from your smart phone

SmartHomeIf you’re looking for a way to connect the technologies in your Smart home, our Home Automation package is your answer. This package features all the products in the Home Security and Energy Management packages plus a lot more Home Automation.

  • Go!Control Touch-screen Panel with Remote Internet and Smart Phone Access
  • Window and Door Sensors
  • Glass Break and Motion Detectors
  • Smoke and Carbon Monoxide Alarms
  • Smart Thermostat and Energy-Efficient Bulbs
  • Small Appliance and Lighting Controls
  • Video Surveillance
  • Automatic Door Locks

Lock your doors, turn off lights, adjust your thermostat, arm your Smart Home system, and much, much more. No matter where you are in the world, you can manage your entire Home Automation system through any of your devices such as your smartphone, computer, or tablet.

From premier security to heating and cooling your Smart Home, to access control and video surveillance, our Home Automation package meets all your needs in your Smart Home while helping you prepare for a smarter future.  For more information on Smart Phone Home Automation and many other services, contact us today!

 

A More Efficient, Healthier Home with Window, Shade & Blind Control

blind controlIn recent decades, homes have been built more and more with energy efficiency in mind – windows are tighter, doors close more completely; indeed the climate within a house is rarely exchanged with that beyond its walls, with most HVAC systems finding peak efficiency in keeping their system closed-off throughout the day’s heating and cooling process.

These systems are quite efficient; however there are drawbacks to excessively conditioned air and some people are more sensitive to a lack of constant fresh air than others. Until recently, however, there were no automated systems that could compare in efficiency to a fully closed-off air conditioning and cooling system; fortunately, with the advent and widespread use of home automation systems that incorporate window, shade & blind control, there are 21st Century solutions that, in many ways, feel like a step back in time.

Before central heating, builders knew to get the most “solar gain” heat from the sun, a bank of south facing windows would add warmth to a home on the coldest day – provided the sky was clear. And before air conditioning, it was commonplace to open windows at night to let cool air in, then close windows to trap it until things cooled off again. But this requires you to stay on top of things.

Today, home automation systems can open and close windows, shades and blinds in direct response to conditions outside and the desired temperature inside – greatly improving the efficiency of any central heating or cooling system, and simultaneously increasing the amount of fresh air brought into the home when the time is right. Window, shade & blind control systems can bring the knowledge of the past into your home’s future; for more information about these and other home automation systems, contact us today!

Seagull Electronics is a Home Theater and Automation leader in home, business, and yacht integration systems since 1988. Servicing Jupiter, North Palm Beach, Palm Beach Gardens, Wellington, Boca Raton, Miami, Florida.