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Home Theaters and Surround Sound

If you’ve been to see a movie lately you may have noticed –  alongside standard, 3D and IMAX showings – showtimes with higher ticket prices being advertised as being played with a new type of Dolby cinematic sound. This feature is what is known as Dolby Atmos, a revolutionary new surround sound technology that has been utilized in select theaters across the country since 2012. Today we will be discussing the ways that through Crestron automation and the ingenuity of the #DoneRightNotEasy crew, GMI can bring this sound revolution into our customer’s luxury home theaters, and how we carefully build these theaters for the ultimate in surround sound experience.

What Dolby Atmos technology provides is essentially an enhancement of traditional 5.1 surround sound but with additional height channels which provide a more enveloping sound effect in your room. For example, rather hearing a Spaceship fly past your head at the same height as your ears in 5.1 Surround, you will hear it move over your head and into the distance.  Of course, a technology of this kind that is designed for large movie theaters can be complicated when it’s brought into a home, which is where Crestron automation and our comprehensive system design process come in.

Crestron audio processors are uniquely powerful in the amount of data that they can manage and distribute from control racks into theater rooms. Since Dolby Atmos provides audio across up to 124 individual channels, the data load is substantial. Crestron processors utilize a technology called Digital Signal Processing, or DSP, which takes digital audio signals and mathematically manipulates them for maximum quality and instant deliverability into any part of the home. Combined with the proper speaker set ups, Crestron can bring Dolby Atmos not only into a home theater but into other rooms in the home as well all from the centralized control rack. This is not a simple process, and because of this many integrators will fail to bring the true Dolby Atmos experience into the home.

As usual, GMI tends to go the extra mile to ensure that your home theater surround sound is the highest quality available. This starts with the room itself, which we prepare by custom designing acoustic panels and placing them strategically along the walls and ceiling of the theater room, testing as we go to ensure the perfect soundscape. We then cover the acoustic treatments and speakers with acoustically transparent fabric walls for an extra clean look coupled with the ability to access and repair a system competent with as little intrusion as possible.

For the ultimate in high-end theater, we install one of the most impressive sound quality devices even further behind the scenes. To do so we install a high-end Taurus Power converter, whose function is to clean all of the energy coming into the home and to all of the system components. This allows our system to manage voltage specifically for high-level audio and control audio spikes in an intelligent manner, culminating in a luxury home theater experience like no other.


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