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Hi-Def Design

Media rooms, home theaters and automated home systems sound luxurious and exclusive. Yes? Not necessarily. Advances in home entertainment technologies have brought high quality entertainment systems into more homes than ever before. What’s the difference anyway?

Media Room by Alpha Alarm & Audio, Inc.

A dedicated home theater is a space strictly for watching movies; a media room provides a variety of uses (i.e., television, gaming, stereo). An automated home system can provide centrally located controls for security, climate, audio and media. Depending on how intricate the system, professional installation may or may not be necessary. However, as with most unfamiliar territory, seeking an industry professional can contribute to a better result.

Integrated media room installation:screen, sound, amplification, wiring

The essentials for a quality home theater experience are the screen, sound, amplification, controls and wiring. Consideration of acoustics and lighting is vital to the theater experience, as well as attention to materials that properly absorb, reflect or diffuse sound. There is a reason for the upholstered walls and seating, carpet and draperies in traditional theaters – the fabric and insulation enhances the sound quality. For the DIYers out there ….incorporate textiles into your home theater design- you’ll appreciate the sound quality result.

The Ultimate Home Gym by Alpha

Another HUGE factor with media equipment is space and storage, not to mention ventilation! Those makeover shows don’t always show where the inner-workings of the beautiful flat screen, speakers and sub-woofers are located. Often this can become a hiccup during installation – the outlets, cable connection and housing is not necessarily in the optimal location for the room’s use.  This is where professional installation pays off big-time when it comes to time and stress-management. Who wants to spend big dollars only to realize later more money needs to be spent to re-locate wiring and cable? Keep in mind that all this equipment generates some heat! Proper air flow around your components will maintain the life of the equipment. Heed not, with some research and/or professional design and installation services, you can join the trend of a dedicated home theater or media room in your home!

In-home surveillance security systems

Advances in technology have not only brought sophisticated media equipment to the mainstream, home security technologies provide more protection than ever. One could surmise there is moreto protect….Today property owners have more options to secure their homes and businesses. Hide-a-key rocks and figurines can be replaced with fingerprint activated locks, and video surveillance cameras can be accessed remotely in real-time. Obviously, risk and budget determine the scope of a home security system, and only a homeowner can judge what suits their comfort level.

Loren Dougherty

In the end, a home security system is only as good as the responsiveness and service of that company. As with any service, pick a company that offers a personal touch. Big name alarm companies do not necessarily offer the kind of attention required to deliver peace of mind and confidence. Recently I met Loren Dougherty, owner of Alpha Alarm & Audio, Inc. I wanted to learn more about home theater design and installation for my interior design clients. Loren has been in business over 20 years in Yolo County and Solano County. His experience with installing media and alarm systems goes beyond what ‘the geeks’ can offer. While his work includes large estates and businesses like The Nut Tree, he prides himself on delivering systems and services for the individual needs of his clients. An initial consultation with Alpha Alarm & Audio, Inc. would be well worth the time if you’re planning on adding or enhancing your home entertainment set up or looking at home protection. Check out Loren’s website for more information as well as pictures of the impressive properties where he’s designed and installed media and security systems.

So, if you’ve been thinking about upgrading the equipment you use to watch movies at home and/or you’ve been wondering how to secure your property with the latest technology without breaking the bank, do some Internet research, visit stores like Best Buy and  Magnolia Audio Video on your own, or call a professional like Loren Dougherty to get the best information to make the decisions best for your needs…And, don’t forget the popcorn!

To read more about my interior design work go to The Design Partner and follow me on Twitter. And, as always, I invite you to email me with stories and pictures of your own home design projects!

Thank You to our Welcome Home Sponsor, Kim Eichorn!

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