How to Choose the Best Home Theater System


Your new home theater just may be the smartest purchase you ever make. And we're here to help you get it right.

Nothing brings a family together like a great movie, TV show, or playoff game in a cozy home theater. Suddenly, your house is the cool house, and a rainy Saturday night at home is everyone’s first choice.

The good news? There are countless variations – from high-end home theaters worthy of an A-list Hollywood film director to very affordable variations that can fit in a spare bedroom but still knock your socks off. Add all the connectivity options (how home theaters so easily stream content and/or turn every room into a music room), and your home theater becomes an investment in happiness. And WAY more so than a boat or pool.

In this guide, you'll learn the ins and outs of home theaters. And if you still have questions at the end of it, we're here to help. So without further ado, let's dig in.

Home Theater Systems Buying Guide Cheat Sheet

If you read anything, read this.

Only here for the essentials? We made it easy for you. Here are the key things to consider when choosing a home theater system:

  • The TV. If you don’t already have a TV to build your home theater around, you’ll need one. If you do already have a TV and it’s not a 4K HDR TV, consider getting a new one because they are extraordinary. Plus, given all the connectivity options built-in, you’ll be set for the future. Today’s new smart TVs are way easier to connect to everything else, whether components, streaming audio, or video, thanks to Wi-Fi built-in, Bluetooth, and so on.
  • Your room. Some home theater systems have big speakers, some have small. (Technically, bigger is better when it comes to audio quality, but certain brands offer small and medium-sized speakers that kick serious derrière in spite of their size.) The point: Given your room’s size, design, and style preferences, think about what size speakers you want from a decor perspective, which will also drive your receiver selection. (P.S. Some bigger speakers are seriously attractive, some speakers are very discreet, and some are made to be hidden in walls and ceilings.)
  • Streaming devices. An awesome side benefit of getting a home theater? The right home theater receiver can double as a multi-talented hub for streaming just about anything – audio from your computer, phone, or tablet… and from online apps like TIDAL, Qobuz, and Spotify. What’s more, if you have wireless speakers in the house, your home theater receiver can tap into those as well, so you can play your music all around the house.
  • Ease of set up. If “easy” is your most important choosing criterion, with respect to setting up, go with a home-theater-in-a-box. The upside: a home-theater-in-a-box is a no-brainer – everything’s included and easy to put together. The downside: a home-theater-in-a-box is a little like a TV dinner: it’s all there — turkey, potatoes, gravy, and green beans — zap 5 minutes, and dinner is ready. But if you have the time, nothing beats carefully planned and well-prepared home cooking. (Translation: go with separate components if you can.)
  • Or just skip the rest of this and buy one of these here in The Best Home Theater Systems of 2023. Then give yourself a standing-O. You now have what our experts are calling some of the best home theater systems anywhere, at any price.

So, what is a home theater system?

Obviously, a good TV or projector and screen are principal to the experience. But if you think of a home theater system like a Broadway play, then the TV = the stage, and the sound = everything else, from story and actors to music and pageantry. The real magic behind home theater systems is audio, and audio is what you need to get right to create a real home theater system at your house.


Typically, a home theater system includes the following components:


  • A TV or projector and screen.

  • A video source. (Like the signal from your cable or dish provider or a Blu-ray player.)

  • A home theater receiver. (Where the power and the brains originate. Also what everything connects to.)

  • Speakers, including (but not limited to): a center speaker, right and left forward speakers, right and left rear speakers, special effect speakers for Dolby Atmos, and a subwoofer or two.

Now, let's take a closer look at all the different pieces that make up a home theater system, while lending some advice and giving you pros and cons to each.

Building your home theater system.

Putting the pieces together.

The TV or projector and screen.

A beautiful picture is key to great home theater, and we can’t say it enough: bigger is better. Bottom line: We strongly recommend going with a 4K HDR TV, and if you can afford OLED, even better. (Our TV Buying Guide explains all.)


If you’re dedicating a particular room to a home theater alone, that’s not only really exciting, it means you can go really big with a projector and screen that measures 8 feet or more across for true theater-like imagery. Today’s best 4K projectors are razor sharp and whisper quiet. Typically, the projector is installed in the ceiling at the rear of the room, and the screen remains stationary or is made to hide away like a motorized window shade. (Sometimes we add automated movie curtains to the mix.)

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Video sources.

Your favorite shows and movies can come from any number of devices in addition to your set-top box. Blu-ray players and 4K media players give you a gorgeous viewing experience and extremely rich home theater sound, and the same is true with devices like Apple TV and Roku, which connect to the Internet and stream content from an ever-growing list of providers (e.g., Netflix, HBO GO, Hulu). Also, unlike some older TVs, devices like Apple TV and Roku automatically update themselves whenever new apps, games, and/or shows become available.

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Now on to audio…

Home theater speakers.

When it comes to audio, it makes sense to choose your speakers first, because your speaker choice helps determine your receiver choice. Big speakers need big power, little speakers need less power, that sort of thing. Also, more speakers means you'll need more channels on your receiver. And for the most immersive sound possible, you may want to consider adding the latest in home theater technology: Dolby Atmos. (We’ll get into Dolby Atmos in a moment, but we mention it here because a Dolby Atmos system requires a few more speakers.)

How many speakers will you need?

That depends. Again, more is always better when it comes to sound, and there are literally dozens of speaker combinations that can create true home theater sound. The traditional home theater includes 5 speakers: a center speaker, a left and a right speaker, two rear left and right speakers, and, of course, a subwoofer. A typical setup looks like this:


The center speaker, which is where most dialog comes from, should be centered just below the TV. (Though some in-wall center speakers live above the TV.) The left speaker goes to the left, and the right to the right. The two rear speakers are placed or installed at the rear of the room, behind the viewing audience. Typically, the left and right forward speakers are bigger than the left and right rear speakers.

What do the channels mean?

There’s 5.1, and 7.1, and 11.2, and 5.1.2 and so on. What’s that all about? If you think of channels as speakers, the first number (the 7 in a 7.1 system for example) = the number of speakers, or seven speakers in this example. The .1 refers to whether the system has a subwoofer or not, so the .1 in a 7.1 system = one subwoofer. The last number, for example the .2 in a 5.1.2 system = how many Dolby Atmos speakers are in the set-up. So a 5.1.2 home theater means 5 speakers, 1 subwoofer, and 2 Dolby Atmos speakers.

Like we said above: think of channels as speakers. And though most music formats only require two channels (left and right), the sky’s the limit for true home theater surround sound. In a nutshell: The more channels you have, the more more speakers you can add. And the more speakers you add, the better and more immersive the sound.

At a very minimum, you’re going to want 5 channels… but we highly, highly (that’s two highlys) recommend getting at least 7. With 7 channels, you will experience – at home – the same thing you do in today’s state-of-the-art digital cinemas: big, thrilling, hang-on-tight, theater sound.

Let’s break down benefits by channels:

A good old stereo system is now referred to as 2.0 (Two channels, two speakers).

Add a subwoofer for impactful bass, and now you have 2.1. The "2" refers to the two front speakers, and the subwoofer is the ".1".

Add a center channel speaker, so the dialog always seems to come from the center of the screen (especially important if you sit a little to the side) and we have "3.1".

Add two more speakers near the back of the room for wrap-around surround sound, and we’re at "5.1". (5.1 was the surround sound standard up until a few years ago, when things started getting crazy good.) Looking for some inspiration? We've curated some of our best surround sound systems and speakers here.

Larger rooms, especially where your sofa is a distance from the back wall, may call for side and rear surround speakers, which takes us to "7.1".

The coup de grâce, and the latest thing: Dolby Atmos, where we place 2 or more speakers in the ceiling. Now we’re talking actual 3D sound, where any sound can hover at any point in space. To recap: a "7.2.1" system has three speakers in front, two on the sides, two in the rear of the room, and a pair in the ceiling. Plus the subwoofer, which is typically in the back, but can go anywhere.

Big speakers or little speakers?

Ten to 20 years ago, most of our home theater customers were buying smaller speakers. These days, it’s all about audio quality – big, authentic cinema sound by way of big floorstanding speakers, as opposed to bookshelf or in-wall speakers. Typically we say bigger is better, but either way, it’s all about your personal preferences and room decor.

Caveat: The two front left and right speakers are the most important. They provide the bulk of the "punch" that comes from music and sound effects. Also, it's important, but not crucial, that all of the speakers match tonally. Going with the same manufacturer and series usually covers this.

The most basic speaker setup.

It all starts with a pair of speakers: a left and a right, on either side of the TV. This is a 2.0 system, or a 2-channel setup; what we all call "stereo". This is the music-listening standard for years. These can be bookshelf speakers, floorstanders, or in-wall and in-ceiling speakers depending on the space available and the level of effort you want to put into the installation.

To be clear: A 2.0 system with two half-decent speakers is still a massive improvement over the speaker that came with your TV. (Today’s extremely thin TVs have extremely thin speakers inside, and thin speakers are tinny and distort easily.) But a 2.0 system is not, technically, home theater. For true home theater sound, you need a minimum of 3 speakers (left, right, and center). For true surround sound, a minimum of five (left, right, center, and two rear.)

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Add a center channel speaker.

When you add a
center channel speaker, you get a 3.0 set-up. Center speakers go between the left and right speakers, ideally just below or above the TV, and the addition of a center speaker means you’re on your way to a home theater setup. What’s more, dialog is much easier to hear and understand when you add a center channel speaker.

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Where do sound bars fit in?

If you’re really tight for space, a
sound bar is a super easy way to upgrade your home theater audio with very little effort. It comes with the left, right, and center speaker already inside, providing a neat, easy-to-fit 3.0 solution. And depending on your budget and room size, you can always add surround speakers from there. (Check out our Top Sound Bars of 2023 buying guide for our favorites.)

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The subwoofer, part 1: goosebumps.

subwoofer is the middle linebacker in a home theater… and it's how you feel — as in literally feel — the action. How heavy is that rumbling boulder in "Indiana Jones"? Turn the subwoofer on and you won’t just hear it coming, you’ll feel it coming via the shaking in your chest. (Or the vibrating coffee table, the dog diving for cover, etc.) And no — two subs or more is not overkill! (See Part 2.)

A good subwoofer not only does the lion’s share of rounding out bass, it clarifies and amplifies low-end frequencies — and some so low, we humans can’t hear them. But we can feel them, and that’s where goosebumps come from.

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The subwoofer, part 2: Giving your goosebumps, goosebumps.

We’re seeing it more and more: home theater lovers going with two or more subwoofers instead of one. All rooms have an area where the bass drops off rapidly, and a second subwoofer helps correct this issue. (Some of our store home theaters — and Bob’s home — include five subwoofers. If you can fit them in, do it.)

Obviously, you’ll need the space to fit more subwoofers (and the budget to buy it), but the net result with two or more = a better bass response and a much bigger sweet spot for optimal surround sound effect. (If you go for extra subwoofers, feel free to send us a few photos of your room, and our experts we’ll give you their best-case scenario recommendation on where each should go.)

3.1 Home theater systems.

Some folks stop at just three speakers (center, right, and left) and a subwoofer. That’s known as a
3.1 speaker setup, and it’s the same configuration found in today’s sound bars. (The ".1" = the subwoofer.) A 3.1 system gives your TV a bit of a home theater effect, though it falls short of real home theater surround sound. But if you don’t have the room for a full home theater, a 3.1 system is the next best thing.

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5.1 Home theater systems.

The basic, traditional home theater setup is a
5.1 home theater system with 5 or more speakers: a center speaker, a left and a right speaker, a rear left and right speaker, and, of course, a subwoofer. A typical setup looks like the image below.

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5.1.2 and up? Now you're talking.

For years, a 5.1 home theater system was considered the crème de la crème. Not anymore. A slew of recent technology breakthroughs now take home theater to a level equal to (and in some cases, even better than) the world's finest cinemas. And one of the biggest breakthroughs came by way of Dolby Laboratories.

A few years back, the sound gurus at Dolby figured out a way to make what some call “3D surround sound" via a new technology called Dolby Atmos ("Atmos" as in Atmosphere.) What Dolby Atmos really does is create a layer of sound that not only hovers above the audience, it hovers in different areas above the audience. And it does it so well, you can actually pinpoint specific sounds in specific places in the air.


How to describe it? A great example of everything working together in a home theater with Dolby Atmos might be the 2017 movie, “Dunkirk”. (In this example, the home theater = 5.1.2, where the ".2" = two upward-firing Dolby Atmos speakers.)


You're part of a quiet conversation between a small group of worried soldiers on the beach (center speaker). On your left, in the background (left speaker), you hear other soldiers drilling. On the opposite side (right speaker), the steady roar of waves rolling up the beach whlie gulls circle above (Dolby Atmos) and dive for fish. In the distance, behind the beach (left and right rear speakers), the steady pounding of German 88s is getting closer. Suddenly, out of nowhere, an explosion only 50 yards away and so loud (subwoofer + every speaker), your knees buckle. And then – before you even see them, you hear them – the sounds of a half dozen Messerschmitt 109s coming in low, passing directly overhead (Dolby Atmos) with a deafening roar, as thousands of 30mm shells whistle by before hitting the sand. (Everything, but especially Dolby Atmos.)

We’ve seen folks turn their heads and/or duck when reacting to sounds above by way of Dolby Atmos – it really is that good. To make it happen, you’ll need a Dolby Atmos-enabled receiver and a minimum of two Dolby Atmos enabled speakers (in addition to your other home theater speakers). Dolby Atmos speakers include in-ceiling variations (flush to the ceiling with the bulk hidden behind drywall), on-wall, or toppers that rest on top of your rear speakers. (Today's better movie theaters are Dolby Atmos-equipped, and most new amplifiers come with Dolby Atmos already onboard.)

Home theater receivers.

The Audio/Visual (AV) receiver not only powers the whole system, it’s the brains behind the whole system. The receiver’s job is to receive, interpret, and then process the TV audio signal (via the cable or dish box) coming into the house before sending it along to its ultimate destination: your TV and speakers. You will need a home theater AV receiver with no less than five channels and one subwoofer output to operate your home theater. We highly recommend getting an AV receiver with Dolby Atmos onboard and seven channels at a minimum, but only if your room can support it and you plan to keep your audio system for a while. Not only will this allow you to future-proof your system, you'll also guarantee a theater-like audio experience at home.

A good home theater AV receiver can perform many functions, such as:


  • Correctly interpret all audio data and assign a channel to each speaker.
  • Send the above to any and all additional wired and wireless speakers throughout the house. (A good receiver = your home’s main audio hub and/or party machine.)
  • If it's wireless, it will be able to stream anything from anywhere. Your music library, your favorite streaming music stations, and so on.
  • Allow your Blu-ray player to shine with stellar sound.
  • Switch among multiple “sound” modes, from Dolby Cinema Surround Sound to Live Cafe to Stereo (for your music), and other modes.

Though less expensive receivers may have all the features and functions you want, they typically don't have the muscle required to do things well. Think scooters vs. motorcycles. Though both have two wheels and an engine, and both will get you across town, only one does it in breathtaking, exhilarating, hold-on-tight style.

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Another option? Go with a preamp and amp.

If you have the budget and really want to get serious, go with separate processing components. With both an amp and a preamp, you’re not relying on one unit (the AV receiver) to do both signal distribution and amplification. Instead, you have a unit (the preamp) that is designed to do distribution and a unit (the amp) that is designed to amplify.

Want something better? Add more dedicated amps! Simply said, the more power they have, the less they have to work to make it sound really good.

Information overload? Time out. Stop.

We thought this was a good place to stop for a sec and remind you: we can make all of this way easy. We’ve been doing home theaters since home theaters first became a thing… so if you prefer: just email us a few photos of your room, give us a budget to work with, tell us anything else you think we should know (about your decor, your taste in movies, what you want in a home theater, etc.), and we’ll show you everything you need to get the job done, beautifully. If you're local, stop by one of our showrooms to experience the magic of home theater sound in person.

What kind of home theater systems are there?

No matter your room size or budget, there’s a home theater solution that will work for you. (One of the coolest home theaters we ever installed was in a 12’ by 14’ den.) But as you consider what to get, think about the size of your room and decor. For example, say you live in a rental property or in a stone house with 12” stone walls… so you can’t leave wires exposed or go around drilling holes to hide wires. What to do? Go for a wireless system. Do you have a big room? Then get big speakers — and more of them. If it's a small room, consider a low-profile sound bar and subwoofer combo for a 3.1 speaker setup

The different types of home theater systems include:

Sound bars.

While not technically a “system,” sound bars are good alternatives — especially when budget and space are limited. They already have the center, left, and right speakers built-in, so all you have to add is a subwoofer and two rear speakers. That combination will take up less space, but still give you true home theater surround sound.

Pre-packaged home theater systems (aka: a Home-theater-in-a-box).

Pre-built home theater systems will always be the least expensive choice and the easiest to set up, though not necessarily best audio quality. Everything you need, all made by the same manufacturer, in a box. Just “add TV.” The home-theater-in-a-box comes with mounting hardware, color-coded cables, and easy-to-follow instructions. But of course, even if you don’t have the time (or the desire) to install everything yourself, consider giving the job to proven, award-winning home theater professionals.

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Home theater systems comprised of separates.

You can spend a lot on every individual speaker, subwoofer, etc., or you can spend a little, or anything in between. The nice thing about going with
separate speakers: you can better customize your home theater to your room and your taste. (Taste, aesthetically, as in, “I like how these speakers hide away so neatly.” Or taste in movies, as in, “I like Sci-Fi way more than I like Rom-Coms.”) Yes, this also requires more work to set up, but if you have a bigger room and want bigger sound, it's totally worth it.

For best all-around results, we encourage customers to explore the “separate speaker” way of making a home theater. Unless, of course, you can do a custom designed home theater installed by home-theater professionals.

Wireless home theaters.

Wireless home speakers are now available. But if you can, wired is generally more reliable and for the very serious, a necessity.

The benefits of a wireless system? No drilling holes in walls and floors, and no running wires through walls or in attics — which, in the end, also means a much easier installation. (Translated = less expensive to install. Less mess, too.) Further, with wireless you can move components anywhere you want, at any time, without having to rewire. And this is huge: wireless components mean everything's on your home network, so you can stream from pretty much anywhere (e.g., your digital library, your favorite online radio stations) to pretty much anywhere. And you can control it all with an easy-to-use app on your smartphone or tablet.

Custom designed and installed home theaters.

Think speakers hidden behind soundproof walls, cozy theater-seating arranged cinema style, black ceilings and multiplex atmospheric touches throughout, and, of course, sound that comes at you from everywhere – sometimes even the seat itself. Even a real movie theater popcorn machine.


A custom designed and installed home theater is what you might call the “whole shootin’ match,” and they’re not just for Steven Spielberg’s house, or J.J Abrams, or Ron Howard’s house. We design and build them all year long… in suburbia, in city apartment lofts — even the occasional farm. A custom theater is indeed pricey, but no more so than the average pool. (And you’ll spend a lot more time in your home theater than you ever would a pool.)

If you’re in the PA / NJ / DE neighborhood, you’re in luck because we live here too — and installing awesome home theaters has been our thing for a long time now. Contact us today, and we'll even do the research and pick the components. And if you're interested in an IMAX or KYD custom theater, we go anywhere in the USA. (In special cases, we've gone as far as Cambodia.)

Power protection, cables and remote controls.

The little (but still important) stuff.

Power protection
. Protect your home theater investment from sudden acts of nature and/or sudden blackouts and/or power surges with line conditioners and surge protectors, right here.


Cables. Just one less-than-stellar cable can bring the whole experience down, and your new home theater will require many cables. We carry only the best.


Remote controls. Toss all those stray remotes on the cocktail table and get one awesome, easy-to-use, universal remote control that does everything. It’s nice to be in control.

The good news about home theater furniture.

What was once clunky-looking isn’t clunky-looking anymore.

Once upon a time home theater furniture was 1970’s silly-looking. Not anymore. The newest hard and soft cover goods would be right at home in any Restoration Hardware, Pottery Barn, or Bloomingdales. World Wide Stereo features hundreds of choices in every style – credenzas, TV stands, power lifts, racks, wall boards, home office desks, brackets and more — so you can hide your electronics without compromising function or comfort and show off your gear in the best possible light. We can also offer customization options – our Palliser line alone has over 100 different leather choices and 25 different styles. Our furniture brands include BDI, Palliser, Salamander, American Wood, Chief, Middle Atlantic, Omnimount, and Sanus, to name a few.

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Home theater frequently asked questions.

We rounded up some of the most common questions we’ve heard from customers and answered them right here for you. Don’t see what you’re looking for? Let us know.

How do you hook up a home theater system and how long does it take?

Allow 2 days to get your system up and running. You'll need day 1 to run all the wires and day 2 to go through your owner's manual, page by page, to customize the system for your particular components. Home theater receivers, unlike stereo receivers, have setup menus that guide you through all the possible options. The good news: today's better home theater receivers self-calibrate. (Self calibration is the process where the receiver uses an included microphone to A) measure your room acoustics and, B) set the levels and distance of each speaker to your listening location — automatically.)

Here’s what that’s important: Everything in the universe vibrates, including the place where you are going to put your home theater. (Room acoustics is the first thing our home theater professionals look for and fix when installing a full blown home theater.)

Before you even start, consider how loud or how dead your room is. Try clapping your hands. If you hear a hint of an echo, the room is probably too loud as a result of hard walls, wood or tile floors, lots of window glass, etc. Conversely, if you hardly hear the clap, your room may be too dead (lots of soft/cushy furniture, thick carpets, angled walls, tapestries, and anything that may break up sound). Ideally, your room should be as acoustically neutral as possible. To get there, we recommend a few discreetly placed acoustic panels and/or the addition of sound-absorbing materials in the right spots. (This is our specialty. Please call with any questions.)

Having speaker wires pre-made with the connectors on them is a big help. Ask your dealer to make up cables after you've measured how long the speaker wires need to be. Don't skimp on the quality of HDMI cables. Your video quality depends on it.

How do you make your rear speakers wireless?

You can use a wireless adapter to add typically wired speakers to the rear, but it's still a patch. If you’re looking for wireless surround speakers, some manufacturers make systems with optional wireless capability for the surround speakers... and if and when running wires to the back of hte room is difficult and/or impossible. Bose comes to mind as a champion of wireless surround speakers. Their Lifestyle system allows for wireless connection of both the rear channel speakers and the subwoofer.

What brands make the best home theater systems?

No one brand is best. If you go with separate components, you can mix and match between brands – though we recommend sticking with the same brand for all of your speakers. (More often than not, premium brands will specialize in either receivers or speakers, but not both, so you will most likely have different brands for your receiver and speakers.) If you buy a home-theater-in-a-box system, obviously it all comes from a single brand. The speaker brands we recommend to start with are Bose, Sonos, Klipsch, SVS. With more premium brands like Bowers & Wilkins, Focal Audio, and Dynaudio really knocking your socks off. (Just to name a few). For components, a dream performance system will have McIntosh all the way, but Yamaha, Marantz, Denon, Arcam, NAD, and Sony kick some serious butt. And if you want to go REALLY premium, go with a world-class JBL Synthesis system.

What wattage should I get for my home theater system?

Just like cars, performance is all about horsepower — and the more you have under the hood, the better (and bigger) your theater will sound. Especially when you turn it up. And, odd but true, a high power theater actually seems louder (read: more goosebumps) at lower volumes.

Make sure you have the minimum wattage recommended for your specific speakers, at the very least. We humans can clearly hear volume changes of three decibels, which requires a doubling of power. Meaning: say you currently have 70 watts per channel, but you want a significant increase in sound level. To do it, you'd need 140 watts per channel.

A good rule of thumb: 125 watts per channel is the ideal amount of power to have without fear of ever running out.

What about the warranty?

When you buy from an authorized dealer, your new sound bar will come with the full manufacturer's warranty. What’s more, with an authorized dealer, you also get phone and email support from the dealer in addition to support from the manufacturer.

What do I need for a Dolby Atmos setup?

The first thing you'll need for a 5.1.2 Dolby Atmos home theater setup is a Dolby Atmos capable receiver. Additionally, you'll need eight speakers: a center speaker, two left and right main speakers, left and right surrounds, a pair of Dolby Atmos-enabled speakers, and a subwoofer.

You'll also need to handle the visuals, whether that be from an external device like a blue-ray player, a projector, or the internal apps on your TV.

Lastly, you'll need the proper cables. High-speed HDMI cables, enough speaker wire to connect all of the speakers, and an RCA cable long enough to connect your subwoofer to your receiver.

We know this seems like a lot, but don't worry. For receivers, you can consult our AV Receiver Buying Guide and gear guide to help you decide on the best option. If you're looking for a new TV to compliment your new Dolby Atmos system, we've got your back there, too! Check out our guide on how to choose which TV to buy to see all our suggestions on how you can pick the TV that meets your needs no matter what your budget is.

How much does a home theater cost?

It really depends on what you want, the size of the room, and your budget. A home theater setup can vary from $667 to $8,000 or more. Fortunately, we have home theater bundles for every price range!

What home theater receiver do I need?

That depends on what the rest of your setup is like. We'd recommend taking a look at our AV receivers Buying Guide to find out what to look for to fit your needs! If you're still having trouble, you can always reach out to us, with over a dozen seasoned pros standing by to help you figure out precisely what you need!

What home theater system should I buy?

You should buy what fits your wants and needs, and never settle for less! For a good starting point, you can take a look at some of our recommendations here.

What home theater projector should I buy?

We'd suggest you take a look at our guide for Best Projectors. There are plenty of options there for different needs and budgets; we're confident you'll find one that fits you. If you're still feeling a little lost, you can always contact us and one of our pros will be able to give you a recommendation based on your needs.

Can I connect my home theater to my laptop or PC?

It depends on the system, but if it can be set up through a single HDMI cable or wirelessly, it can be!

Are home theater systems good for music?

Heck yeah they are! While music might not be as immersive as movies or TV shows with a good surround system, it can still certainly provide a fully immersive surround listening experience.

Are Home Theater Systems Wireless?

Not all of them, but there are some wireless options available!

If you're still not sure what to get, let us help.

“I wish I didn’t buy that awesome home theater,” said no one, ever.

If the process of buying or putting together a home theater seems a little daunting, let us help. We’re not here to hard-sell or push any particular product – that’s not who we are, or why we’ve been so successful. We’re here to make things easy, on your terms, and if you give us a chance… we’ll prove it.


And if you’re still not sure what components are right for you, or if you have a question we didn’t answer, do not hesitate to pick up the phone and talk to us. Seriously, we live for helping customers make great choices, whatever the budget or situation. The way we see it: when we do right by you, whether now, next year, or even years after a sale, you’re going to come back. And probably more than once. Eventually, we’re on a first name basis… and if you’re in the neighborhood, you’re even stopping by for our special events. Life is good.

Parting thought on how much is it worth? Our Founder and CEO, Bob Cole, received a letter and a bottle of wine from a mother whose husband had bought a considerable theater from him 10 years ago. She said that she didn't want it at the time, that she wanted a pool but she gave in. That she was sure it was just a big waste of money. She did get the pool 3 years later, she explained. She goes on to say that two kids are now gone and one is in college, but they all come home to watch the movies. That growing up it was the most family thing they did and that she was so grateful — ergo the wine.

By the way, she said in closing, not a week goes by that they don't use it, and nobody uses the pool anymore. 'nuff said.

About World Wide Stereo


World Wide Stereo is a home entertainment technology store with a storied past and a loyal following. We opened during the Betamax craze in ‘79, spent the 80’s and 90’s recruiting some of the industry’s top audio/video minds (many of whom are still here) and twice led the National Dealers Association during its best years. Awards followed, (including #2 in Customer Service / USA TODAY), business boomed, our online store took off, and today blah blah blah long story short: we still love what we do – and that’s definitely the truth.


Our only rule: “no one leaves unhappy.” Learn more about World Wide Stereo here.


Please share your thoughts below.


It was interesting to me when you mentioned that there are plenty of options when it comes to picking a home theater projector. Would it be a good idea to get a large television if you are wanting to create a home theater? Having a television would probably allow you to have a higher-quality image.

It’s great that you mentioned that the new smart TVs these days are easier to connect to everything else because of their built-in Wi-Fi and Bluetooth features, which is why we should consider getting one to build our home theater around. I just had my basement at home in Greenwich cleared out to turn into a home theater since I love watching dramas and movies during my free time. I’ll be sure to keep this in mind while I look for where I can purchase the TV and audio equipment I need for my home theater here in Greenwich soon.

Useful !

Useful !

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