For some folks, Valentine’s Day is considered an outdated and possibly old fashioned occasion. After all, why not celebrate your love every day, not just once a year? Even if that’s your perspective, wouldn’t it be nice to take an extra day to celebrate in an extra special way? Sure, flowers, chocolate, and special meals all come to mind, but how about creating the ultimate room for a little Netflix and chill?
Need Valentine’s Day ideas? Check out what we’ve got!
Picture it; a home theatre with all the right ambiance, not just for Valentine’s day, but for every day ever after; soft ambient lights (and maybe even a setup where the lights mimic the video on screen? It’s possible!) remote control over all your devices, sweet sound for those soaring movie scores, and an ultra sharp 4K (or even 8K!) TV to watch it all on.
Whether your preference is for romantic comedies, action flicks, or some serious gaming, your home theatre can be the hub of all your entertainment, starting this Valentine’s Day. Here’s our recommendations to take your home theatre to the next level.
Upgrade that old TV!
The average consumer buys a new TV only about every 7-10 years. So if it’s been a while since you looked at the amazing new video technology available today, it’s time to buckle up! TVs are now clearer, crisper and more realistic than ever with billions of colours for a more vibrant video picture. Resolution standard today is 4K.
4K TV is four times more detailed than older HDTVs, so it makes lines ultra sharp, and creates a video picture so real you’ll want to touch it. 4K TVs have millions more pixels than your old TV (a total of 8 million pixels per screen), so you see a lot more detail than ever before.
I recently picked up a Hisense 4K TV and love it, but pretty much every manufacturer has a 4K TV now so if you’re loyal to one brand, it’ll be easy to shop your favourites.
Click here to read more about 4K in Learning New TV Tech: all about 4K TV.
There’s also 8K TVs which double the pixel count again. While they’re fewer and further between in terms of wide availability, you can still get this technology today, so if you’re thinking you should upgrade to not just what’s standard now, but what will future-proof your setup, an 8K TV might be a good choice.
Samsung, LG and Sony all have 8K TVs available at Best Buy.
The bottom line, a better (and more romantic) home theatre starts with a great TV, so if you’re making upgrades, this is where to start.
Upgrade your audio
All that visual eye candy and realism is only as good as the audio that goes along with it. To get sound that matches the video quality you need a stereo system or sound bar. I’ve been going the sound bar route myself, mainly because I prefer a streamlined set up, and a smaller price tag—but I’m not willing to compromise on quality.
I recently picked up a Yamaha YAS-209 for my living room and love it because it’s powerful, yet compact.
But I’ve also owned a Sony and an LG sound bar, and reviewed many, many more, including this Samsung Harman Kardon one and Sony’s HT-Z9F.
Skeptical about whether you really need a sound bar? After all don’t TVs all come with internal speakers for a reason?! Find out the real reasons you definitely need a sound bar in my blog Learning New TV Tech: The REAL reasons you need a sound bar for your new TV.
Set the mood with lighting
My third major component for a home theatre upgrade is lighting. Smart lighting.
Smart lighting in a home theatre can help set the mood for any occasion; turn the lights blood red for a scary horror flick, set them blue and green for an undersea adventure documentary, or more. You get the idea.
Choose smart bulbs, like Philips Hue (a personal favourite) or LIFX, or pick up a couple of cool smart lamps, like the Philips Hue Go lamp or the Hue Bloom. These lights can be controlled with your smartphone or your voice and Google Assistant or Amazon Alexa for the ultimate in hands-free entertainment.
Another option is to add ambient or bias lighting around the TV’s edges. I installed LIFX Z lighting on my new Hisense TV, and you can read about how it works and other considerations in my review.
Want to take the lighting option a step further? What if your smart lights could mimic what’s happening on screen? With a device for the Philips Hue lighting ecosystem called the Philips Hue HDMI Sync box, you can.
I got to install and try out the smart lighting effects of the HDMI Sync box and I can say it adds an amazing element to your TV room or home theatre. Once connected it can match all the smart lights you want to what’s happening on the TV—you never have to lift a finger.
Give the gift of a relaxing and special place to enjoy TV shows, movie night or a marathon gaming session. Upgrade your home theatre for Valentine’s Day, load up your partner’s favourite flicks and plan a romantic night in!