How to Improve Internet Speed

There are many factors involved with slow internet speed, so before you decide to jump ship to another internet provider, why not take a look at our tips and tricks that might help speed things up a bit.

One of the oldest and most reliable ways to boost your broadband is to use a signal booster. You can find a variety of services here at JL Audio Visual; our team of experts will be happy to help with any enquiries or concerns.

Slow broadband can cause general frustration when attempting to complete simple tasks and search quick queries, it can also have an impact on your working life too, especially for those with a home office.

A slow speed can be due to an array of different issues such as the computer settings, wireless performance, home wiring or even the time of day.

Test Your Broadband Speed

Before assuming the broadband is at fault, it’s best to check the speed of your broadband.

Doing this will allow you to resolve the issue much more quickly, you will be able to rule out the broadband, or save yourself the hassle of carrying out pointless procedures.

To do this, you can easily find a website online that will test the broadband speed for you.

Password Protect Your Wi-Fi

By securing your Wi-Fi you’re actually encouraging the speed of your broadband. Protecting it with a password will prevent others from using your internet.

When multiple devices use the same broadband, it will impact the bandwidth. The performance of the internet will reduce due to a smaller bandwidth received by each added device.

Bandwidth is the internet connection’s maximum data transfer rate. This essentially measures how much data is able to be sent using a certain connection over a particular amount of time.

The back of a router

Reset Your Router

Resetting your router can be highly beneficial for your broadband. It can stop any hacking attempts, not to mention will help your broadband apply any updates and reset the router’s memory.

Make sure when rebooting your router that this is done correctly. When intending to reset your router, avoid carrying out a factory reset. A factory reset will erase all your settings.

Unplug the router from any devices it might be connected to, then you can unplug the routers power source to completely shut the device off. Allow the router a couple of minutes before plugging it back into the power source and modem.

Relocate Your Router

Similar in some senses to Bluetooth, walls and doors can hinder your internet connection. Not to mention baby monitors, microwaves and even fairy lights.

If you think any of these obstacles are causing problems, it might be worth considering a new spot for your router. The higher and more central you place your router, the better!

If this isn’t possible, signal boosters can easily resolve this issue.

Clean Out the Computer

It can be surprising to discover how many apps and updates can affect the speed of your internet. Media players, messaging applications, streaming services and security scans can weigh down your computer’s ability to efficiently utilise the internet.

Ensure you also delete any old files and keep your browser history clean; this will help to speed things along.

Opt For Wires Over Wi-Fi

This may sound outdated and slightly unappealing, but ethernet cables are actually more attractive in the sense that they can transfer data at a much faster rate than Wi-Fi due to the lack of data encrypted.

There will also be a drastic reduction of interference, so your neighbour’s frequency will no longer be of any concern to you. You will have a much more reliable connection, which is much more preferable for games consoles and desktop PCs.

Find a Faster Browser

If you find that your broadband is only slow when searching the internet, it might be your browser rather than your broadband. This can even include using numerous tabs too!

Consider a VPN

Some internet service providers select when to throttle the bandwidth, this is deduced by certain online activities, hitting a soft data cap or streaming services.

If you are aware and have evidence of your ISP doing this, a VPN can help to hide your online activity, preventing the ISP from being provided with the data to make any throttling decisions.

A VPN is a virtual private network which will allow you to create a secure connection to another network. A VPN will protect the users’ identity and browsing activity from hackers, businesses and more by hiding your data and IP address when connecting to the internet.

Although, you should be aware that VPN, in most cases, can reduce the speed of your internet. This is due to a combination of encryptions and server hopping.

Flush Your Domain Name System

A DNS, domain name system, record will keep track of any website addresses you visit; this is designed to improve your user experience.

DNS records heavily rely on the website, and also you, to stay on their respective servers, the only issue with this is that servers modify and change over time which is incredibly common for websites.

Because the servers are being relied on by DNS, it will negatively affect your connection speed as it won’t recognise the new server, which is where flushing your DNS can come in incredibly handy.

If you are having any issues with poor or slow Wi-Fi connection, get in touch with our expert team today. Here at JL Audio Visual, our array of services will help to resolve any issues. Find out more about our connectivity solutions and Wi-Fi installation services today.

The Best Film Podcasts to Listen to

For anyone who’s into film, a great movie-related podcast is a must. But with so much choice out there it’s always best to do a bit of research and get some good recommendations when looking for a new podcast to listen to. From reviews to Hollywood history to interviews, there’s something to suit every film buff!

If you love watching films at home, why not find out how we can make the experience ten times better with our top-quality visual and audio system installation service?

Kermode and Mayo’s Film Review

Kicking things off nicely is Kermode and Mayo’s Film Review which is regularly broadcast on BBC Radio 5 Live and is also available to listen to as a podcast.

Each episode, film critic Mark Kermode and radio presenter Simon Mayo cover the latest releases as well as some older ones that will be available on subscription-free services that week. They are often joined by actors and other guests for a lively and witty show.

Top tip: Individual reviews are available in an A-to-Z directory on the Five Live website.

Scriptnotes

For those who like to dig a little deeper, Scriptnotes, hosted by John August and Craig Mazin, dives into the world of screenwriting.

With an admirable guest list and extensive archive, there’s plenty to explore when it comes to the creation of films.

How Did This Get Made?

Perfect for those who like a laugh, How Did This Get Made? doesn’t celebrate the best movies of all time, rather, some of the worst.

Comedians and actors Paul Scheer, June Diane Raphael and Jason Mantzoukas pick apart the most renowned cheesy and terrible films.

We’d also like to make a special mention to Paul Scheer’s other podcast Unspooled, where he takes a more sophisticated approach, discussing undisputed classic films.

Off Camera with Sam Jones

Sam Jones’s TV series come podcast is a fantastic example of long-form conversational interview, and you’ll want to hear what they have to say!

Featuring an extraordinary array of actors, producers, directors and musicians, the conversations are honest, witty and revealing. Will Ferrell, Thandie Newton, Sienna Miller and Andrew Garfield are just a few of the huge names that may pique your interest.

Filmspotting

Filmspotting will keep your recent release radar turning with a weekly review of a new film. Hosts Adam Kempenaar and Josh Larsen also read listener feedback which helps you to feel engaged, why not get involved yourself?

Some special episodes even include the hosts performing parts of scenes with the guests, notably the one where Edgar Wright and Simon Pegg perform a scene from The Professional!

You Must Remember This

With rave reviews, the You Must Remember This podcast is the passion project of author and journalist Karina Longworth.

In her own words, Longworth describes the podcast as ‘dedicated to exploring the secrets and/or forgotten histories of Hollywood’s first century’. From secrets and scandals to lost history, this podcast will both intrigue and fascinate.

Honourable Mentions:

• The Rewatchables
• Black on Black Cinema
• The Qwipster Film Review Podcast
• The Frame
• Hollywood Babble On

Think we’ve missed something? Let us know your favourite film podcast on our Facebook page!


About the author – Julie Harlow

A self-confessed techno-geek, Julie loves nothing more than keeping up to date with the latest releases, rumours and gadgets. She has been researching and writing blogs for JL Audio Visual since May 2020.

Why Invest in Quality Audio For Your Home Cinema

For many, the term ‘home cinema’ will conjure up thoughts of amazing visuals and unparalleled screen quality. However, it is just as important to think about good quality audio when setting up your home theatre.

As audio system installation experts, we are interested in how superior audio can elevate your home cinema experience to new levels. Here, we look at why investing in your sound system will be beneficial and help you get the most out of your entertainment system.

Realistic Sound

Systems that rely on poor-quality, internal speakers are not going to be adequate if you are trying to reach an authentic sound experience.

A top-quality system, whether this is full surround sound or more moderate speakers, will offer you an authentic audio experience with clearer, more realistic sound.

One big draw of installing a full home cinema in your house is the transportive quality of film. From the comfort of your own theatre room, you can go anywhere – this transportive element is enhanced immeasurably when you invest in quality audio.

Next-level audio will take a relatively mundane viewing experience and make it more engaging, adding to the exhilaration and suspense that movies can bring.

Increased Audio Clarity

Also adding to this realistic element of your sound, increased clarity is something to watch out for.

These days many sound systems will do a decent job at projecting clear, loud audio, but for an extra layer of clarity, it is worth seeking out a quality system that would work well in your space.

Choosing higher-end audio will allow for a multi-layered sound that doesn’t become muddy or confused. You will be able to hear distinctions in delicate dialogue and swells of music, enhancing the overall quality and experience.

The volume button on a stereo system

Mixing Options

When you opt for a higher-quality surround sound system, you will be able to control each channel and its output.

This will give you more control over the level of bass or treble settings. You will be able to customise an amazing sound to suit you. If you prefer deep rumblings or rich tones, you can achieve these preferences through one audio system.

Achieving a Cinema Experience At Home

The purpose of a home theatre is, of course, to bring the magic of a commercial cinema home.

This simply cannot be achieved fully without investing in a sound system that is capable of matching your visuals. To get the full cinematic experience, powerful audio is a must!

A commercial cinema room with people watching a film

Choosing an Audio System

Surround sound is one of the best ways to attain this kind of authentic soundscape. The multiple speakers and channels will provide all-encompassing audio that allows for a more immersive viewing experience.

Although surround sound can be quite an expensive investment, many find that it is well worth paying that little bit extra. For a more in-depth look at the benefits of surround sound, check out our blog below.

For more guidance on what kind of audio system would best suit your home cinema space and what your installation options are, why not get in touch with our team here at JL Audio Visual?

Best Tech Podcasts to Listen to

The continual popularity of podcasts means that there are a plethora of quality podcasts on every possible subject! Technology podcasts make great audio content because the industry changes so rapidly; there’s always a new gadget or upcoming release to talk about.

As audio system installation experts, we are fans of all things technology; the following podcasts are some of the best that discuss tech news and innovation.

Back to Work

Hosted by Merlin Mann and Dan Benjamin, this podcast humorously blends topics of technology, work and communication.

The podcast discusses a range of topics, covering app recommendations, tech events and recent TV shows. There is a focus on work-life balance and how technology can be used to improve our lives and productivity.

This one is for listeners looking for an entertaining but informative podcast experience!

This Week in Tech

This podcast is a staple in the genre and has been running for over ten years, making it one of the central hubs for reliable tech news.

Every week, presenter Leo Laporte and his various guests and co-hosts take part in a roundtable discussion where they investigate the latest tech trends and developments.

This Week in Tech has episodes that span for over two hours, so it’s not one for beginners! If you decide to give it a go, it’s probably best to start with the most recent episode rather than trawling through a backlog of over ten years’ worth of content.

People sat around a table laden with laptops and tech

Technology Untangled

This podcast, as its name suggests, aims to untangle the implications of the future of technology and speculates how the tech industry is going to continue shaping the world.

Host, Michael Bird guides the listener through interviews and stories that tease out questions about digital ethics, sustainability in technology and hyper-converged infrastructure.

With half-hour episodes and simplistic explanations, this is the perfect podcast for those with a casual interest who are looking to learn more and become better informed.

Rabbit Hole

Rabbit Hole is more of a documentary, rather than a tech talk show like those previously mentioned.

Some might not consider it a tech podcast in a traditional sense, but it does deal with the emerging effects of the internet and how the online world begins to bleed into the real one.

The Times tech columnist Kevin Roose asks how the internet and online culture are beginning to change who we are and how we think.

This binge-worthy audio series is perfect for podcast beginners and true tech enthusiasts alike.

A man using a laptop at sunset

Note to Self

Note to Self’s host, Manoush Zomorodi considers how we can go about preserving humanity in the ever-evolving digital age.

The podcast mainly examines how daily and family life are affected by an increased technological presence.

Where other tech talk shows focus on reviews or news, Note to Self looks at the human perspective and our direct interactions with social media, screen time and the invasion of smart devices, among numerous other topics.

As you can see from our selection here, there is a wide variety when it comes to tech podcasts, whether this refers to format, direction or topic. There is a lot to take from each of these podcasts for both budding tech enthusiasts and seasoned experts.

As professionals specialising in quality home audio and home cinema installation, we can help upgrade your home tech to the next level; why not contact our experienced team today?

A Guide to Quality Home Audio

Whether you want an amazing multi-room audio system to blast your favourite tunes or an immersive home cinema sound experience, good quality audio is something you will need to consider.

Most of us will often focus on screen quality and leave audio as an afterthought. However, to get the best experience from your home theatre, a decent sound system is essential.

Why Invest in High-Quality Audio?

Investing in good quality audio does not necessarily have to mean breaking the bank. Finding what is right for your space and needs is more important than just buying the biggest, most expensive speakers.

Excellent audio can elevate a mundane viewing experience to cinema quality. Investing in a brilliant audio system will give you a new appreciation of sound.

What Makes ‘Good’ Audio?

A room with two tower speakers

What sounds ‘good’ is subjective, but there are certain things to be aware of and look out for when on the hunt for a next-level audio system.

Clarity

Good speakers will have an impeccable level of clarity. This means that as the speaker runs, it will produce no sound itself, leaving you to get the full-bodied, crisp audio from the music or film alone.

Bass

Bass will contribute to the clarity of low, rich sounds. A speaker system with a good bass output won’t sound muddy or wobbly when putting out those booming notes. Well-defined bass will contribute to the overall soundscape and increase listening quality.

Resolution

Resolution goes hand-in-hand with clarity and will add to the immersive experience. High-resolution audio will allow you to hear every layer of sound; you will be able to hear the distinction between different instruments and movie dialogue will be crisp.

Soundstage

Quality audio systems will be able to create a realistic soundstage, where depth and width are considered. This is another feature that will enhance the immersive nature of your audio.

Speaker Size

As previously mentioned, the speakers do not necessarily have to be the biggest to produce the best sound. If you are unsure about what kind of qualities would work best in your space, a home cinema installation professional will be able to give you some guidance.

Which Speakers are Right for You?

A closeup shot of a speaker

Nowadays, there are countless brands and speaker types to choose from that provide excellent quality. 

Before deciding on what is right for you, you must consider budget, what the speakers will be used for and the space they will be projecting audio into. 

Soundbars

This can often be one of the cheapest options and is preferred by many that don’t want to invest in surround sound yet.

A long horizontal speaker is placed under the television and can provide a boost in audio quality for TVs that have poor internal speakers.

Soundbars will provide better quality audio than internal speakers, but they cannot reach the same levels as more extensive systems.

Tower Speakers

Tower or floor-standing speakers can offer complete overall sound from one unit. The units will usually come in pairs to be set up together. They have a box-like structure and cannot easily be hidden, but many choose to make the speakers a feature of the room.

These kinds of speakers are generally used in rooms dedicated to listening to music, but could also be useful in a home cinema space.

Ceiling Speakers

If discretion is a concern, ceiling speakers are something to consider. They can provide better audio while being hidden away and won’t compromise the layout or design of your room.

Although they can be preferable for this reason, ceiling speakers are often unable to provide the full range of audio functions like the smooth bass or breadth that other systems can provide.

Unlike soundbars which can usually be a DIY job, ceiling speakers will usually require expert installation as fire regulations and safety need to be taken into account when these speakers are fitted.

Subwoofers

If you are focused on achieving a powerful sound full of depth, subwoofer speakers will be essential for your setup.

Subwoofers give clear sound from the low end of the audio spectrum, making them important for high-quality movie viewings.

Surround Sound Systems

Two speakers

Opting for a surround sound system can be the preferred option for people whose priority is audio for a home cinema rather than listening to music.

Essentially, surround sound will ‘surround’ you in audio through multiple channels. Different categories of sound are distributed between a number of speakers positioned around the room; this provides a super-immersive experience with clear, realistic audio.

One potential downside is that surround sound systems can land on the more expensive side of all the audio options. However, you get what you pay for, and it can be worth considering if you’re looking to take your home theatre to the next level and create an authentic cinema experience.

For a more in-depth look at the benefits of surround sound, check out our blog below!

Speaker Positioning

Positioning can be vital in getting the best from your audio system, whether this refers to surround sound or an individual speaker.

For some, it can be tempting to position speakers where they are hidden out of sight, but showcasing the speaker’s audio quality is advised. Hiding speakers too intently can cover them and prevent them from projecting audio as well as they would when unobstructed.

You must assess the room acoustics and seating positions before settling on speaker position. Installation professionals will help with this if you are unsure.

Considering the Space

The size and configuration of your space will also come into play when deciding on positioning and speaker selection.

As with the positioning of speakers, professional AV technicians will be able to advise you on the kind of speakers that will benefit the room. Large speakers placed all around the room will be inappropriate and wasteful in a small room where a soundbar or slim tower speakers would work better.

If your current home audio system is lacking, why not get in touch to see how our experienced team could help?

The Best Movies to Stream This Halloween

The spooky season is slowly creeping up on us, and let’s face it, there is no better way to spend the run-up to Halloween than settling in and watching some festive movies!

Whether you’re a lover of straight-up horror or prefer a bit of family-friendly fun, streaming services like Netflix and Amazon Prime give us access to a whole plethora of Halloween-related films.

If your current home theatre system isn’t quite delivering the best Halloween thrills this season, why not consider an upgrade? For more guidance about home cinema installation, get in touch with our experienced team here at JL Audio Visual!

Halloween (2018)

Would Halloween be complete without, well… Halloween?

This reboot of the 1978 slasher classic pays homage to the original by positioning itself as a sort of meta-comedy. Although you won’t be disappointed with the gore that’s expected from this kind of movie, you might be surprised by how comedic it is. With clever references to the franchise and the genre as a whole, many viewers feel like this is a more successful sequel than any of its predecessors.

The film follows the iconic horror figure Michael Myers as he escapes from a psychiatric facility and heads back to the town where his previous reign of terror took place to pick up where he left off.

This nostalgic slasher, available on Netflix, is sure to send chills down your spine!

A man eating popcorn watching a Halloween movie

Halloweentown (1998)

If you’re not a massive fan of horror but still like to get in the Halloween spirit, this may be perfect for you!

Just released on Disney Plus, this family-friendly movie is packed with cosy October visuals and supernatural adventure. The film follows thirteen-year-old Marnie who learns that she comes from a family of witches. With her family, she visits her grandmother, a good witch, who lives in a town where witches, vampires and goblins roam the suburbs, living normal lives.

The three main characters get up to mischief with their new-found witch powers and must use their talents to save the town from being taken over by an evil spirit.

This fantastical light-hearted movie has all the Halloween vibes without giving you and your family too much of a fright!

Hereditary (2018)

We’re back on the scarier end of the spectrum with Hereditary. This one can be found on Netflix or Amazon Prime for those brave enough to give it a watch this Halloween.

The creepy tale follows the Graham family as they start to learn about their increasingly sinister ancestry, following the death of the family matriarch. They unravel terrifying secrets and experience some horrifying things. Before diving into this one, the less said, the better!

If you’re the sort of person who likes to spend Halloween getting as scared as possible, this one is sure to elicit some sleepless nights!

Netflix on the TV

Professional home cinema installation could be the answer when trying to boost your Halloween movie-night experience! To find out more about how JL Audio Visual could help, why not get in touch?

4 Best Gadgets For 2020

With the constant releases and updates of new tech, it’s hard to keep track of everything that becomes available.

As experienced audio visual consultants, we like to keep an eye on the latest gadgets and technology that make their way into our homes. Here, we’ve compiled a list of some of the top gadgets to buy in 2020 that are sure to boost your tech experience!

Philips Somneo Sleep and Wake-Up Light

How do you wake up in the morning? Is it with a violent jolt upon hearing your noisy alarm? Well, that kind of rude awakening is no more with this handy light!

The Somneo light is designed to simulate natural sunrise to help you wake up gently. The level of light gradually brightens before your set alarm time when nature sounds or your chosen radio station will turn on to help wake you up completely.

This gadget is packed with other features that make it user friendly and extra functional. It has a sleek touch-screen interface, a soothing noise sound bank and you can even charge your phone via a USB port.

If you’re looking for a more peaceful sleep and wake-up experience, this is the gadget for you!

Apple AirPods Pro

You’d be hard-pressed to find a tech list that doesn’t mention any Apple products, and the AirPods are definitely worth mentioning!

These wireless earbuds are a step up from their predecessor as they offer noise cancellation technology for a more immersive sound experience. In-ear comfort has also been enhanced as the design has been altered to accommodate a silicone tip.

The AirPods charging case alone is also a brilliant piece of kit. It can offer more than 24 hours of listening time and can be charged with a charging mat or lightning cable.

Many users agree that AirPods remain one of the go-to options for wireless listening.

Pair of AirPods

Osmo Pocket

With the ever-increasing popularity of vlogging and online videos, good-quality handheld cameras are frequently being sought.

The Osmo Pocket is a pocket-sized camera perfect for budding film-makers; the stabilising technology gives you clean, professional-looking shots with 4K-capable capture!

The long handle and intuitive controls make this super-efficient camera easy to use and master. For users that find the in-built preview screen too small, you can also link your phone for a larger view.

UE Megaboom 3

Portable speakers with reliable sound are becoming increasingly popular; if you want to up your speaker game, the UE Megaboom 3 is a great piece of kit.

The Megaboom offers a powerful sound and increased level of durability; it has been designed with outdoor use in mind and will give you solid sound in any location. The cylindrical design allows for an impressive 360-degree sound dispersion that can easily fill up a room and more.

This Bluetooth speaker also has the ability to connect with other UE speakers to create a stereo system, giving you a completely wireless and all-encompassing sound experience.

Two Megaboom speakers

From home entertainment expertise to CCTV installation, find out how JL Audio Visual could take your home tech to the next level!

CCTV Mistakes to Avoid

For many homeowners, CCTV cameras help give peace of mind. However, this peace can only be lasting if your cameras are installed correctly and operating as expected.

Here at JL Audio Visual, we have many years of experience in CCTV installation and we know how important it is to get home security right. Making sure everything is installed properly is essential if you want to get the best possible performance from your cameras!

To help ensure you’re getting the most out of your home security system, we have outlined some common CCTV mistakes to avoid.

Incorrect Positioning

For the most effective security and surveillance, you need the cameras to be in the best possible positions. This means assessing your property and figuring out which areas need to be protected.

Putting cameras in areas around the main points of entry is one of the best things you can do. Positioning cameras above doorways and ground-floor windows is a must.

It is also important to ensure your equipment is pointed in the right direction. Homeowners often make the common mistake of positioning their cameras down at an angle that’s too severe. This can mean the feed records the ground and won’t pick up any suspicious activity.

You will also need to consider the quality of light that will affect your intended installation position. If there are bright street-lamps nearby, your footage may become overexposed and unusable. A lack of adequate light will also impact your picture quality, so striking the right balance is important.

Inappropriate Number of Cameras

Another common mistake can be not installing enough cameras at enough points around your property. More cameras will mean you can achieve a more complete view of the property.

However, how many cameras you need to install will, of course, be dependent on the size of your property. Expansive homes will need more cameras with a wider field of vision, whereas the same number of cameras would not be necessary for smaller suburban home.

A wall of CCTV cameras pointing at two people

Not Setting Up Alerts

The presence of multiple cameras may be enough to deter most potential intruders, but some may remain undiscouraged. The purpose of a CCTV camera system is so you can monitor any suspicious activity. This is why you need to have alerts set up correctly.

You will want to be notified if there is a threat; the alerts will make you aware of any intruders when you are not at home so you can call the authorities and protect your home and family.

Unobscured Cameras

As alluded to above, visible cameras can sometimes be enough to deter intruders, but you should not rely on this fact. Some criminals may notice your cameras and vandalise them or destroy them, making them ineffective.

To pre-empt this possibility, you can install cameras in less obvious locations. You may even want to disguise them to ensure that no unsavoury characters realise they are being watched!

For high-risk properties, a combination of both visible and less obvious cameras can be useful to help actively deter invaders while also remaining able to record serious activity.

Infrequent Maintenance

You may be tempted to install your cameras, leave it at that and not think about them again until you experience any kind of security threat. This is a mistake!

Checking that your connection is intact and cameras are fully operational is an important part of simple maintenance that should be undertaken on a regular schedule.

Bad weather or other environmental factors can compromise the system and render it ineffective, leaving your home vulnerable. So, check your visibility every now and again to ensure everything is working to your specifications.

Not Consulting a Professional

CCTV installation can be more difficult than many homeowners might suspect. Consulting a professional can help you avoid all of the aforementioned mistakes that lead to ineffective home security systems.

A home security system is not something you want to make mistakes with. If you require expert CCTV installation assistance, why not contact our team today to find out how we could help?

The Benefits of Surround Sound

Setting up a fully equipped home cinema means including a quality sound system. Many homeowners opt for surround sound for enhanced sound quality.

Here at JL Audio Visual, we have years of experience when it comes to surround sound and multi-room speaker systems; we know how important they are to an all-encompassing home cinema experience.

Audio is just as important as visual when it comes to achieving the best possible home theatre setup. We look at the benefits of surround sound and how it could take your at-home experience to the max!

What is Surround Sound?

The term gets thrown around a lot, but what exactly do we mean by surround sound?

The name is fairly indicative; surround sound means you are essentially ‘surrounded’ by audio. Having more than two available audio channels means that sound comes from multiple directions. Different types of sounds are categorised by mixers and distributed between speakers. One speaker’s output might focus on a film’s dialogue while another will emit the musical score.

A 5.1 audio system is touted as the best for domestic use. This means the system is split into five main speaker components, including:

• Center channel speaker
• Left and right front speakers
• Bipole speakers
• Dipole speakers
• Subwoofer

By splitting the sound like this, audio can be of a higher quality and will give a 360-degree feel.

Authentic Audio Experience

The isolated audio elements mean that sound is less muddy and more realistic. With a combination of quality visuals and audio, you can become fully immersed in a film. You’ll feel like you’re really there!

With speakers positioned at optimal points around the room, viewing experiences can feel more engaging. When audio is coming from behind you and either side of you, it can add to the overall excitement or suspense of the movie.

Increased Overall Quality

Surround sound can provide richer and more pristine tones. There is a very noticeable sound difference when compared to a basic speaker system.

This kind of system will mean the clarity of your audio is better than ever. Hearing overlapping dialogue clearly will be no issue and you will get the full impact of explosive or audibly dynamic scenes.

Customisation Options

With more audio channels, there are more opportunities for custom sound levels. You will be able to adjust each speaker to suit your tastes and specifications.

Bass or treble settings can easily be adjusted; mono or stereo speakers may not have the same kind of scope when it comes to customisation. If you are investing in a full home cinema experience, you will want it to be on your terms and to your specifications!

Closer to Real Cinema Experience

Going to the cinema is enjoyable because you are receiving a heightened viewing experience. But what if you could bring this kind of next-level experience home?

Surround sound can help you achieve this. The true cinema experience does not just involve a big screen. Film aficionados will want to be blown away by sound as well as on-screen action! The ability to clearly hear the deep rumbles of the bass and clarity of dialogue will help you achieve this cinematic effect from the comfort of your own home.

Someone watching a movie from behind a pillow

Other Options

Surround sound is by no means the only audio option despite its many benefits. The downside is that surround sound systems can be quite pricey, but if you are willing to invest in them, it can be well worth the cost!

If you’re biding your time and evaluating your options, a soundbar may be something to consider. These speakers can be much cheaper and will provide better sound than a TV’s internal speakers. They will not provide the all-encompassing experience that surround sound can, but they can be effective at giving high-quality audio before deciding to invest in something more extensive.

https://www.jlaudiovisual.com/services/home-cinema

If you are thinking about taking your at-home cinema to the next level, why not get in touch with our experienced team to see how we could help?

The Most Popular Movies on Netflix During Lockdown

With the pandemic and subsequent lockdowns across the world, this year has definitely brought some challenges and changes to all our lives. Trying to be positive has been difficult for many, but if there’s one good thing to come out of staying at home all day, it’s all that extra time for Netflix binging!

Here at JL Audio Visual, we know how important a home theatre system can be, especially during these socially-distanced times! Being able to achieve quality visuals and audio from the comfort of your own home is now more relevant and desirable than ever.

Things are slowly starting to return to normal as the movie industry gets back on its feet. In the meantime, there are plenty of films in the Netflix library to be getting on with.

But what were some of the movies that kept us company during the depths of lockdown? Netflix are famously secretive about their viewing stats, but through looking at what frequently appeared on their ‘Top 10’ feature and what was most talked about on social media, we can get a rough estimate of some of the most-watched movies during the lockdown period!

Contagion (2011)

This is an unsurprising if slightly indulgently macabre result. Those who aren’t familiar with the movie might be scratching their heads as to why a 2011 release got a massive boost in renewed interest. To put it simply, this movie depicts a hauntingly similar situation to the one we were all facing at the height of the pandemic.

The movie follows the discovery of a deadly virus after a woman dies suddenly, which seems to catalyse a series of fatal cases. The virus explodes into a global pandemic, and society begins on the path of collapse.

This was probably such a popular choice because many felt it reflected the world’s recent situation. There are no zombies or aliens in this apocalypse, just a virus and the very real-world panic to contend with. Many viewers felt this was a cathartic if eerily prophetic watch.

A map marked with virus outbreaks

The Shawshank Redemption (1994)

This movie marks a trend of people revisiting old favourites. What’s more comforting than kicking back with a bucket of popcorn and watching a tried and tested classic?

The epic drama follows a former banker who is found guilty of a crime he didn’t commit. He must come to terms with the horrors of his new life in Shawshank prison while holding onto his hopes and dreams. Our main character befriends another inmate (played by Morgan Freeman); they help each other find solace and eventual redemption.

You can see why themes of hope and redemption might have been something viewers were looking for during all the lockdown uncertainty!

Red boxes full of popcorn

To All the Boys: P.S. I Still Love You (2020)

This recent release appeared on Netflix just before lockdown hit and continued to be a favourite for many over the following months. As a sequel to the much-loved original teen rom-com, this film was bound to have a strong and enduring presence on social media.

Based on the trilogy of books by Jenny Hann, the film continues to follow the relationship of two young high-schoolers and the light-hearted drama that such relationships inevitably bring. The visuals are colourful and cosy, providing the perfect solution to lockdown cabin fever.

It’s sweet, fun and doesn’t take itself too seriously, the perfect ingredients for a much-needed comfort film to get people smiling when there wasn’t much else to smile about!

Pink heart lights

These movies show the kind of variable viewing experiences that viewers were reaching for. From all too realistic apocalyptic settings to cheesy high school dramas, lockdown saw it all. There was certainly time to expand upon typical tastes and find some new favourites!

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