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Chapter 1. The Home Theater Difference > Home Theater Components

Home Theater Components

A basic home theater system might consist of a television, home theater receiver, a DVD player, and speakers. The number and magnitude of speakers will certainly vary by budget, but most home theater systems consist of five separate speakers and a powered subwoofer (called a 5.1 setup). Of course, the more of these components you already own, the easier it is to convert these existing elements into a full home theater system.

The Receiver—the Center of Your Home Theater

Each of the components previously listed plays a vital role in turning your living room into a theater room. The home theater receiver (Figure 1.1) can be thought of as the brains and brawn—the central hub—of your home theater system. It provides the necessary decoding of various sound formats, and also provides the necessary amplification to reach realistic sound levels in your home. It also enables you to switch the audio and video between multiple sources. For instance, you can connect your satellite receiver (or cable box), a DVD player, and a VCR all into your home theater receiver and have your receiver control what audio and video are being reproduced.


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