Home theaters create a movie-going experience, minus the “going” part, of course. A nice sound system, big display (through a large HD TV or a projector) and the right lighting all contribute to the feeling of being in a real movie theater. Another huge part of the experience that sometimes gets overlooked is the seating. The seats in a home theater system are vital though–after all, you and your guests will be sitting in them for about two hours every time you watch a movie. For a great seating experience, follow these tips:
1. Get Comfy
Obviously, you don’t want to use metal chairs for your home theater, but even your standard couch might not be enough. There are plenty of options out there for truly amazing comfort in your theater seats. Try to incorporate some of these features:
- Wide Armrests
- Reclining Backs
- Hidden Storage
- Couples Seating (two seats without an armrest in the middle–great for you and your sweetheart!)
- Easy to Get In and Out Of
- Easy to Clean
2. Sight Lines
One of the most important features of your home theater seats will be how well everyone can see the screen from the seats. You can do this by setting the seats the right distance from the screen, curving the row of seats, and using platforms for the back seats. What you incorporate will depend on your room size, audience parameters, and type of system, of course, but ideally each person in the audience will have a clear view of the whole screen, and the screen will take up about 30% of their vision horizontally, and 15% of their vision vertically. This will create a more immersive experience.
Unless you have the whole basement to devote to your home theater system, you probably are worried about maximizing space. But don’t cram so much into your seating area that comfort is lost. Most people appreciate and expect about 20 inches of space between rows so they can comfortably access their seats. You can shrink that gap to 14 inches if necessary, but don’t go smaller than that–people will feel cramped as they climb over each other to get to their seats. Another thing to remember is an aisle on the at least one side of the room, which should also be 20 inches wide. Also consider how your seats recline. You don’t want someone in the front row reclining into the toes of the person in the second row, who has their feet up on the footrest. Set up your seats so that everyone can recline without experiencing discomfort or creating it for others. Lastly, you might be tempted to put the last row right up against the back wall, but this isn’t a good idea. People won’t be able to recline, and even more important, the back speakers could be too loud for those on the back row, or muffled to those in the front.
Paying attention to the seating in your home theater system is just as important as selecting the right sound and video systems. Trust Big Fish Automation to take care of all of it. We are ready to take care of your home theater installation in Utah, including the seating. We’ll help you get an awesome movie-“going” experience!