Newcomer 4K (also known as UHD and Ultra HD) ruled the roost at this year’s Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in Las Vegas. For those not in the know, 4K is the next step in TV picture quality, displaying four times the detail of current high-definition TVs. This translates to better brightness, greater contrast and more vibrant colours, resulting in more depth and detail than ever before.
It’s not just a boost in picture quality that’s proving popular. “It used to be that a 55-inch screen was the standard size,” says Melanie Malcolm of CEDIA-accredited Bespoke Home Cinemas. “Now, we’re seeing these sized screens transferring to the bedroom, while 65-inch or even 75-inch screens are displayed in modern media rooms. These screens are much more beautiful than they used to be, attractively designed and detailed from every angle.”
Most of us expect enhanced sound quality when we invest in a new super- sized TV. It’s no surprise, then, that the sound bar market is going from strength to strength. At the 2016 Samsung European Forum in Monaco, Samsung unveiled the latest additions to its audio product line-up, including the HW-K950 sound bar – the company’s first to feature Dolby Atmos – and a sound bar package, including two Dolby Atmos-enabled wireless rear speakers to deliver three-dimensional surround sound.
A successful media room also needs an improved viewing experience. Melanie notes that the traditional fireplace and mantel are now disappearing from many of the projects that she works on. “In their place we are seeing ethanol and ribbon fires being fitted, which allows us to hang screens above the fire at a much lower height.” Not only does this give a better room aesthetic, but is also affords a better viewing experience.