Are you ready for a full slate of college football conference championship this coming weekend? To take game day to the next level, here are five tips for driving the football viewing experience into the end zone.
Display or Projector? You Make the Call
Projectors are a popular choice for viewing a favorite team on game day because they provide more screen real estate than the largest of displays at a significantly lower cost. Electric screens are available in a wide range of sizes to accommodate any room, and can be mounted on the wall or ceiling, or even recessed in the ceiling. And for powering screens in retrofit installations where hardwiring isn’t an option, battery motors provide a flexible, wireless alternative.
One drawback to projectors, however, is that they require a dim room to deliver a crisp picture, making displays a better option in areas of the home with more natural light. But whether your client’s space calls for a projector or a display, one thing they both have in common is the need for a mount to securely attach them to the wall or ceiling for a clean look.
The Soundbar Audible
To truly deliver the sounds of game day roaring crowds and bone-crushing tackles, it’s hard to go wrong with architectural in-wall and in-ceiling speakers, combined with wall-mountable subwoofers and amplifiers tucked away in component racks. However, for theaters on a budget – or installations where it’s not feasible to tear out the walls and ceiling – soundbars provide a cost-effective and practical alternative. And as the first Sonos soundbar to offer full compatibility with Dolby Atmos, the Arc has quickly become a fan favorite.
To seamlessly incorporate the soundbar into any setup, mounts specifically designed for the Arc are available, including extendable wall mounts and mounts that attach directly to TV mounts, allowing audio to move with the display in any direction. Both provide easy access to I/O and power ports, while offering depth adjustment to ensure the soundbar’s Dolby Atmos speakers and mics are clear and working properly.
Don’t Fumble the Ball on the Network
There’s nothing worse than having a key play on game day broken up by buffering. So, for clients relying on media streaming devices to watch the game, a fast and reliable internet connection is a must. The best way to achieve this is by hardwiring smart TVs and media components to the network. However, in many theaters relying on Wi-Fi is the only option. And if your client is experiencing painfully slow performance, an upgrade to their router is in order.
Features to look for include speeds of at least 1200Mbps; simultaneous dual-band support for the 2.4GHz and 5GHz frequencies; and support for virtual private network (VPN) servers and firewalls. Another option is to utilize a mesh solution, which spreads the connection out amongst multiple wireless mesh nodes to cover a larger area. To deliver the high-speed performance your clients require, look for mesh solutions with tri-band designs.
Unsung Game Day Infrastructure MVPs
While displays and speakers may get all the home theater glory, it’s the infrastructure behind the scenes that brings the game day viewing experience together. For example, in-wall power and cable management kits provide you with everything you need to safely extend power to your clients’ wall-mounted displays, projectors, and accompanying devices, while neatly concealing power and AV cables in the wall.
And to conceal and organize media devices like Apple TVs, Roku players, Amazon Fire TVs, and more, recessed component boxes are the perfect solution. Designed to be installed directly behind furniture or wall-mounted displays, the boxes include AC outlet spaces to integrate power, allow cables to be routed through the wall, and offer elastic straps to secure devices.
Sacking Protection Breakdowns on Game Day
Once you have invested in the ultimate game day experience, you need to protect the electronics during power losses and surge events. A great way to do this is by including an uninterruptible power supply (UPS) with surge-protected outlets. Surge protection keeps sensitive electronic circuits safe from damage caused by voltage irregularities, while the UPS provides a battery backup system that keeps equipment working in the event of a power outage. For any home theater equipment that runs through a cooling cycle when powered down, a UPS is essential. For example, when a projector is turned off, a fan blows to cool its bulb, which gets very hot during operation. If the cooling cycle is skipped, the life of the expensive bulb will be seriously reduced.
Jennifer Brandt is channel marketing manager for Legrand|AV.