Home Theater Basics: Should You Go For a Projector or TV?

home theater

One of my favorite home automation topics is entertainment systems and, more specifically, a home theater. It’s crazy to think that just a decade ago, a TV and a DVD player was what we relied on for a movie watching experience at home. Today, you can completely transform a room into your own movie theater, complete with surround sound and an oversized screen, but without sticky floors or overpriced beverages.

One of the key elements of a home theater is, of course, the screen. If you’re going to invest in a home theater, don’t rush into choosing a screen. It’s important to research your many options and determine what will be best for your room size and preferences. When I think of a theater, I think of a big screen. However, the size requirements vary person to person. When planning your home theater, think about what screen size you want and how big you can actually go, should you go for a projector or TV? Do you have an entire wall’s worth of space or will it fit into a specific area of a room?

Projection System

If you want to go as big as you possibly can, you might want to consider a projection system with a large screen. This combination is best for a dedicated home theater room because you can get a much larger screen than you can with a television. Also, some people won’t want a projector hanging from their living room ceiling. While projectors and screens can get pricey, you won’t find a bigger screen elsewhere. If you are considering a projection screen, you’ll have many more decisions to make. For one, you’ll want to decide if you want a fixed-frame, pull-up, or motorized style of screen. Additionally, you can also choose from 16:9 standard sized screens or a 2.35:1 screen.


If you don’t want to take up an entire wall or aren’t ready to commit to a projection, then you probably want a flat-panel HDTV. Today, there are so many TV options. There’s LCD, plasma, 3D…the list goes on. Take the time to thoroughly research the differences, as well as what you prefer. While I know plenty of people who like 3D, it gives me a headache, personally. Some people swear plasma is inferior to LCD, but it all depends on what display looks best to you. For a home theater, I recommend investing in a TV that is at least 60 inches. However, when it comes to a home theater, the bigger the screen the better.

Photo by: gsloan

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Jeff is a tinkerer. He loves gadgets, but usually waits until the reviews are out before buying something. He loves the DIY projects, and loves help setting things up too. Some of his favorite products and services may not be the most well known, but he loves his custom solution.