rsz_philips_4k_smart_tv_roomThe first week of September always makes me think of fresh starts. I remember how I used to spend Labour Day putting together all my school supplies; sharpening pencil crayons (wrist cramps!), putting paper in the folders of my stiff new binder (the Trapper Keeper), and picking out a suitable first-day outfit from my small selection of newly purchased clothes I hadn’t yet been allowed to wear.

Fall means fresh starts!

September still makes me think about new opportunities; though instead of school supplies, I wonder about things like winterizing the garden, or doing small home repairs and renos.

In reassessing my nest, I’ve been taking a look at our home theatre. Winter isn’t far off now and I know in a couple months, I’ll love hiding out in my warm, cozy, dark home theatre and watching movies and TV series while storms rage outside.

My home theatre isn’t obsolete by any means, but with all the new technology out there now, like 4K TV, audio improvements, and of course the prices coming down on many items (think Labour Day sales, Black Friday and Christmas), it’s been making me think about upgrading.

Where to begin your Home Theatre upgrade – with a TVrsz_sony_4k_tv

A TV is the smart place to start when it comes to home theatre improvements. For starters 4K TVs are now everywhere. 4K TV is basically ultra high resolution TV; really, really HDTV, if you want to put it that way. 4K TV has more than 4 times the resolution of existing HDTV, and it means a clearer, more detailed and more realistic video picture in your home.

Go for 4K resolution

Many manufacturers are now making 4K TVs, and as result, prices are dropping, making them even more accessible to consumers. There are a vast array of sizes for 4K TVs now too; everything from compact, like this 40” Samsung smart 4K TV, to wall-filling, like this 88” curved model.

Pick a smart TV4k-UHD-Insignia-Roku-TV-Best-Buy-Canada-1024x536
4K TVs are often always smart too. ‘Smart’ means they come with connected options like streaming TV services built right in (Netflix, YouTube), with web connectivity, or the ability to play online games. You basically turn your TV into a computerized entertainment portal with a smart TV, and it also means you don’t need to purchase any external devices to get connected.

Choose an operating system
There are several manufacturers and platforms for smart 4K TVs; Samsung runs the Tizen platform, Insignia uses Roku, and Sony uses Android. Which system you select will probably depend on which platform you’re already running at home; Android smartphone users might find it easier to adopt that platform for seamless connectivity across all devices.

3 reasons Fall is a great time to work on your home theatre

Fall is a transitional time of year; one when we reassess things in life, and make plans to hunker down for the coming winter. Knowing you might be spending more time indoors is one great reason to make some improvements to your indoor entertainment, but there’s also other reasons for kicking the home theatre up a notch at this time of year.

1.  Baseball & CFL playoffs
Sports fans have all kinds of reasons to want to park themselves in front of a new and improved TV this time of year. The boys of summer are winding things down with MLB playoffs kicking into high gear. The CFL too is winding down and games are becoming critical. Not to mention the Grey Cup; imagine watching the quintessential Canadian football final on a large, ultra clear, detailed 4K TV with your family and friends!

2.  NFL and NHL are gearing up4K img-tv-hero-center
Two popular sports are ending, but two more are just getting started. While you can definitely put a new 4K TV to great use watching finals, you’ll also get continued use out of it with the launch of new seasons of hockey and football.


3.  Fall TV seasons begin
One of my favourite times of year is the fall TV launch when all my favourite TV shows and series relaunch for the winter season. (Plus all kinds of new shows kick off too, like 24: Legacy, which looks really cool.)

I’m most looking forward to The Big Bang Theory, Dr. Ken and Empire. Not to mention all the Netflix series kicking off, like the epic Narcos, and made-in-4K House of Cards.

Audio options have expanded

When it comes to home theatre audio, there are improvements here too which make upgrading worthwhile. SONOS just announced added voice control for it’s seamless line of wireless home speakers, as well as support for Spotify music streaming.sonos bar

Pioneer has just announced plans for an ultra compact home audio systems to be added to its lineup of gear, and Harman Kardon has a new soundbar/subwoofer combo coming out too. Watch for more info on those developments through the fall.

Want all the home theatre awesomeness, without the work?

If you don’t want to do all the work installing, configuring and setting up your home theatre, you don’t have to. Leave the work to Geek Squad, and get everything delivered, installed and set up just for you in just a couple hours. Check out the many great packages or just ask in any Best Buy store at the Geek Squad booth, about what will best fit your needs.

We want YOUR input!

For all these reasons above, September is Home Theatre month at Best Buy. Watch the blog this month for all kinds of tips, how-tos, reviews, and new info on how you can improve your home theatre this fall.

Of course we also welcome your questions; do you want to know how particular device works? Request a review! Need a primer on streaming TV, a backgrounder on 4K, or wonder what ‘lossless audio’ is? We can help answer your questions. Just add them to the comments below.

Erin Lawrence
Editor TV and Home Theatre
Erin is a journalist, writer, and TV producer with a fascination for technology and a love of gadgets. Check out her blog