Business

How to ... Set up a media room

Erik Wrolson sits in front of a McIntosh reference two-channel audio system on display at Reference Media in Fairhaven.

"It’s important to create a quality media room within your means. Rather than spending the entire budget on a whole system, get products with long-term value by buying a few good pieces that will last.”
Erik Wrolson, co-owner of Reference Media LLC in Fairhaven
Erik Wrolson sits in front of a McIntosh reference two-channel audio system on display at Reference Media in Fairhaven. "It’s important to create a quality media room within your means. Rather than spending the entire budget on a whole system, get products with long-term value by buying a few good pieces that will last.” Erik Wrolson, co-owner of Reference Media LLC in Fairhaven JOSIE LIMING THE BELLINGHAM HERALD

“Start with the basics,” says Clark Cyr, co-owner of Audio Video Excellence in Bellingham. “The three big things to consider are the size of the room, the budget you have, and the quality of sound you want.

  • “It helps us when people bring in a diagram of the room when they visit,” says Cyr. “If it’s a large job, we go to the home and make recommendations before you buy. We’ve seen people spend anywhere from $2,000 to $500,000.”
  • Consider what else the room will be used for while making decisions on purchases. The media room or home theater is often a multi-purpose room. Cyr says that at least 80 percent of his customers do not have a completely dedicated theater room. “It takes a lot of space for that kind of seating and electronics.
  • “Also, if we can get in while a home is under construction, rather than after it’s done, money can be saved in installation.”

  • Get professional advice on set-up, or buy from a local store that can assist you through the tangle of wires and remotes.
  • “We’re trying to bring back the days when people really looked forward to sitting down and listening to great sound,” says Erik Wrolson, co-owner of Reference Media LLC in Fairhaven. “Our service is more personalized than the big-box stores because we know our stuff and can set it up for you.”

  • Research brands and new technologies. TVs come as flat screens or projection systems. Speaker options are endless. New high-definition DVD players are much more expensive than regular players.
  • “Give it two years and they’ll be affordable,” says Cyr, who watches the market carefully.

    The newest isn’t always the best. “Surprisingly, we’re selling lots of record players,” says Wrolson.

    “They’re making a huge comeback. People want to listen to their old vinyl. New technology and record cleaning systems make them sound like new again.”

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