Those freebie home theater packages, are they good enough?


home-theater20130902So, you just bought a new LCD TV. This time you opted for a larger screen to replace your two-year old or so 19î or 22î. Replacing them with 32î or 40î model perhaps? But LCD prices have gone down so much this pass couple of months that a 50î or even a 60î have become irresistible. As long as they could actually fit into your living room or your cramp condo unit, then thereís no problem.

Only a couple of years ago, LCD technology was quite expensive. But many of the large size LCD televisions are now below the 100k mark, making these devices the favorite next electronics to buy among consumers; practically pushing the old and bulky CRT models almost obsolete.

Of course, the best way to enjoy an LCD TV is to accompany the large screen with a good-sounding home theater system. You know, the one with five small speakers and a booming sub-woofer. Spread them around the room and you instantly get a mini home theater complete with surround sound. Yes, just like in the movies.

Nowadays, many will not find that kind of home setup hard to do, since LCD TVs on sale are already packaged with their own home theater surround sound system. Brands like Sony, Samsung, Devant, LG among others, try to sweeten the deal of their LCD TV marketing push with their own brand free HT system. Such deals are not bad at all.

But for those of you who were not lucky enough to get a similar freebie from your dealer or not satisfied with the package, you might ask: how do you buy a home theater system without digging too deep into your pocke?

Yes, a home theater setup is quite expensive. If youíre the audiophile type, a high-end home theater system could cost as much as your 60” LCD TV or twice, or even more. Those over-hyped BOSE (a brand often frowned upon by many die-hard audiophiles) HT system alone could actually max out your credit card.

What about brands like Yamaha, JBL, Onkyo, and Denon? Of course, these are well-known brands that many stereophiles would say ìyeah, much better than the freebies.î But if youíre on a tight budget after buying that large screen TV, prices are still ëkinda steep for the stereo brands mentioned.

Now, if that new large TV dented a bit of your savings, then itís perfectly reasonable to settle with the free HT package that came along it. If thereís no HT included in the package, however, it is also sensible to get a similar kind of HT system from the pack, especially when theyíre on sale.

Most of these HT boxes are home theater 5.1 surround sound system with powerful digital amplifier already integrated in the DVD player.

Always settle with the brand the same as your TV—like if you got a Sony Bravia model, go for a Sony HT system for easy synching of the two models. In the case of Sony, they have this ìBravia Sync.î If itís Samsung or LG, do the same. Always go for the familiar brands, especially the ones with after-sales support.

Take note though that the HT system must be up to specs: choose the one with HDMI connection, it can play files from a USB device, and has auxiliary inputs for additional audio. Also, donít go any lower then 300watts of sound output. Believe me, youíll be looking for these specs soon or later. Sound wise, these affordable HT boxes are good enough for the time being until the next round the money pot is full again.


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