An entertainment center is the perfect way to house, organize and display your home electronics. Many types of furniture fall under the entertainment center banner, from TV stands to full-sized wall units. The wide range of styles and finishes makes it easy to find an entertainment center that is perfect for your home and your family's needs.
Entertainment centers are available in a wide range of sizes, from simple TV stands to substantial wall units. Take an inventory of your home electronics and plan for future expansion.
You'll need more than your TV's screen size when you're shopping. Measure the height, width and depth of all the components in your home theater as well as the width and ceiling height of the room that will house your entertainment center.
Several optional features will make setting up your entertainment center simple and safer. Integrated cable connections, cord management and built-in surge protectors are all available choices.
Like all furniture purchases, look for signs of quality construction. Corner blocks should be used for stability, drawers should pull smoothly on precision rollers and cabinet doors should sit square and open and close firmly.
You should have no trouble finding an entertainment center to complement your room's decor. These units are available in a wide array of styles and finishes.
There are four types of entertainment centers: TV stands, armoires, consoles and wall units. TV stands are small and inexpensive. Armoires provide sophistication and concealment. Consoles are perfect for today's large, flat screen TVs. Wall units provide plenty of equipment and media storage space.
While wood is by far the most popular choice, a metal entertainment center can add contemporary sophistication to a room. Veneer and manufactured wood combinations can be inexpensive, but still look good.
Wood doors allow you to hide your electronics away. Glass doors protect your system from dust and allow remotes to work with the doors closed. Speaker grills let the sound surround you—even with the doors closed.
Some entertainment centers include options that limit clutter and make equipment hook-ups easier. Integrated connections, cord management and surge protectors are all available options.
Modular entertainment centers allow you to customize the layout to fit your needs. These systems also allow you to expand the entertainment center as you add new equipment.
Entertainment technology keeps changing, and, thankfully, entertainment centers have kept up with this dizzying pace. Today's entertainment centers can accommodate wide-aspect flat screen TVs, media servers and Internet appliances. Whether you're looking for a minimalist TV stand or an elaborate full wall unit, there is an entertainment center to fit your style and budget.
There is a wide variety of entertainment centers available. TV stands are compact and inexpensive—perfect if you only have a moderate sized TV and a DVD player. Armoires provide the ultimate in elegant concealment if you'd rather not have your TV be the center of attention. Consoles—with their low, wide form—are perfect for today's larger flat screen TVs. Wall units provide plenty of equipment space and storage, with many having the look of built in bookcases.
Although many people like to show off the shiny interfaces of their electronic toys, others would just as soon keep the bells and whistles behind closed doors. Let the doors of your entertainment center reflect your decision. Glass doors reveal your equipment in all its techno-glory, while allowing remotes to work through the closed doors. Solid doors will keep your electronics hidden away until you need them. Double hinges or pocket doors can make the doors completely invisible when they are closed. Speaker grills allow your surround sound system to give you a theater experience that is discreetly hidden away.
What should your entertainment center be made of? Solid wood is a popular choice—there is a wide range of hard and softwood centers available in a rainbow of stains and finishes. A metal entertainment center can lend a sophisticated, contemporary look to any room. If you're on a budget, manufactured wood and veneer combinations are not only inexpensive; they're eco-friendly as well.
It's a fact of life: The digital age hasn't relieved us of the burden of media storage. CDs, DVDs, even LPs (Remember those?) — they all need a place to call home. Having your disks, game cartridges and other media handy makes them easy to enjoy. As you review your entertainment center choices, keep in mind the amount and type of media you'll need to store. Don't forget to think about your future needs as well, proper planning will help you get years of use out of your new entertainment center.