There's nothing like watching your favorite movie in your very own home theatre. You can munch on snacks that won't cost you a ton and snuggle inside a cozy blanket, unlike in pricey, cold, and crowded cinemas.
So in this post, we've listed down some of the best home cinema gear that won't cost an arm and a leg but still perform up to the mark. Whether you want to convert your bedroom into a mini theatre or wish to have a cinema-like experience with your family in the TV lounge, there's something for everyone here.
From a nifty mini movie projector to super-convenient dimmable lighting, you'll find the best picks for the perfect setup. Read on!
Top 8 Picks for a Home Cinema
Not every home cinema is built to be the same; that's why we selected varying technologies and theatre equipment below to suit everyone's preferences:
Prima - Best Mini Movie Projector
Cinemas mean huge screens, and a home cinema projector is a perfect gadget to give you the real experience. But unlike most bulky and hard to use projectors, a mini movie projector is much easier to use and gives an equally exciting result.
The Prima projector is a home cinema projector that's about the size of a smartphone (a small one.) It projects on screens between 30 inches up to a whopping 200 inches. But this doesn't mean it will lower its resolution - the Prima projector has 200 lumens for a high-contrast, HD experience.
Prima is no ordinary projector either. You get a built-in 64 bit quad-core Android processor that lets you download apps from Google Play and stream directly - talk about ease of use!
Moreover, you can connect virtually any device to Prima via Bluetooth or WiFi. This allows you to mirror the screen and seamlessly project whatever you're playing on your device's screen.
And in case you want to pair an old device, Prima has all sorts of ports for it - USB, HDMI, DC5V, TF, headphone jack, and even micro SD.
Using its LCD touch-display, you can control the device and access its settings, Play Store, and browse through other content. You also get a remote with the package, so you don't have to leave the comfort of your sofa.
With automatic angle adjustment and a battery life of more than three hours, your movie nights will be hassle-free and enjoyable with Prima.
- 1080 HD resolution with 200 lumens
- Quad-core Android processor
- Auto angle adjustment
- Bluetooth and WiFi-enabled
- Remote and tripod included
- Connects and casts everything from any device
Samsung Q60T 75-inch - Best Budget Smart TV
If projectors aren't your thing, you'll need a smart TV that syncs with all your devices. Not just that, but it needs to be high-definition with a big enough screen to give you the 'cinema feel.’
This is why we chose the Samsung Q60T Smart TV as the best choice for your cinema. This giant, 75-inch smart TV can give you crisp and clear video and sound quality for just under $1200.
Being one of the entry-level QLED series, the Q60T boasts a brilliant and beautiful 4K display, offering great value for the price.
It has perfectly detailed and sharp images with a wide color palette, as Samsung always has. The color contrast might not be able to compete with some of its premium siblings, but you'll still get the bang for your buck.
This is because much of the high-end features of the QLED series have trickled down to this entry-level model. For instance, the Q60T has the same Tizen Smart TV platform as most of the premium QLED models do, which offers a simple user interface with a quick and easy setup.
With all the apps - Netflix, Amazon Prime, Hulu, YouTube, YouTube Live, etc. - available at your fingertips, you'll find it super easy to watch whatever you feel like.
The best part? They've incorporated Amazon Alexa into the TV, so now you can speak to it without using any external speakers. With this budget-friendly 4K smart TV, you won't feel like you're missing out on much. But if the video quality isn't up to your standards, upgrade to the Q60R series.
- Bright and sharp 4K display
- Quantum processor Lite
- Amazon Alexa and Bixby voice assistant
- 3 HDMI ports
- Affordable price
Bose 5.1 Home Theatre System - Best Wireless Speakers
Even though most projectors and TVs come with speakers, they often sound a bit flat. If you want an immersive experience that can make you forget you're sitting in your TV lounge, nothing can beat a surround system.
We chose the Bose 5.1 home theatre system as the best one because you can always trust Bose for exceptional sound quality.
Secondly, it doesn't cost as high as some other high-end models do - less than $1700, and you'll get better sound than most brands.
Third, it's a wireless system, so you won't have to worry about tripping over unnecessary wires and making endless connections from one device to another.
The star of the show is the Bose soundbar 700+, which delivers clear and crisp dialogues and heavy bass. Plus, its Adaptiq audio calibration technology fine-tunes the sound according to the room you're in, be it wood, brick, or glass. The integrated Amazon Alexa and Google assistant only makes it more convenient.
Next, the Bass Module 700 subwoofer will amp up the bass so you can feel it right in your heart - it's that powerful. Lastly, the Bose surround speakers are what really makes it a fully immersive experience. They're less than four inches tall and blend in discreetly with the environment.
Forget endless knots of wires - this mid-range wireless home theatre system is the smartest investment you will make.
- WiFi and Bluetooth enabled
- Soundbar with Amazon Alexa and Google assistant
- Minimalistic design with a glass top
- HDMI and optical cable included
- Small, discreet yet powerful surround speakers
Roku Stick Plus - Best Media Streaming Device
If your smart TV takes forever to load content or doesn't support some apps, you should definitely purchase a media streaming device. And while there are many viable options on the market, the Roku Streaming Stick Plus is hard to beat.
This device supports all services - Netflix, Hulu, Amazon Prime, HBO max, Apple TV, and many others. Some of the channels also come for free, like Crackle and PBS kids.
Plus, it supports 4K HDR, making this stick the cheapest one on the market with such high-quality streaming. Plug it directly into your TV's HDMI port, and voilà, you're ready to use the device. You can also use voice search on its remote for finding what you need quickly.
The clean and minimalistic user interface might seem outdated to some, but you can never go wrong with simplicity. Overall, you get premium quality videos, over 5000+ channels, and easy controls for a very affordable price.
- Has every streaming service
- Supports Apple Airplay
- 4K HDR
Logitech Harmony Companion - Best Universal Remote
A home cinema inevitably brings with itself some clutter, which includes a bunch of remotes for different gadgets. This is why the Logitech Harmony Companion is your best bet to make your space look clean and integrate every device's control into one remote.
It supports thousands of devices from over 6000 brands, allowing you to control your TV, speakers, lights, and whatnot. Plus, it has WiFi and Bluetooth support, which enables it to control gaming consoles, streaming sticks, a home cinema projector, etc. If it's smart, it's on Logitech's list of controllable devices.
For set up, use the Logitech app on your smartphone or computer, and follow the user-friendly instructions to assign tasks. You can set these tasks according to the activity and turn your smartphone into a remote control.
For instance, if you want to turn your lounge into a dance floor, it will follow your programmed settings to turn on the speakers, dim the lights, and perform other similar tasks.
That's not all - you can also use voice control on the remote, thanks to the integrated Amazon Alexa, and control supported devices.
- Supports thousands of devices
- Turns your smart device into a remote
- WiFi and Bluetooth enabled
- Organizes tasks in the app
- Voice-control option
Sony BDP-S6700 - Best Budget Blu-Ray Disc Player
Having a modernized home theatre with a futuristic TV or home cinema projector doesn't mean you can't play your old DVDs or Blu-rays. And being able to play them shouldn't cost you more than 100-150 bucks.
So don't let your collection gather dust on the shelf and get a Blu-Ray disc player - the Sony BDP-S6700. This under $100 budget pick does a good job at what it's supposed to do - play your DVDs and blu-rays in 1080p quality. It's not 4K, but it will upscale to near 4K quality on a 4K TV.
Convert 2D DVDs into 3D, stream from apps like Netflix or Amazon Prime, or cast anything on your smart device via Miracast. However, this player is no stunner when it comes to smooth streaming, considering its low price point.
If you want to make the most out of your Blu-Ray player, the Sony UBP-X700 will prove a better choice. It supports 4K and HDR, streams smoothly, all while costing under $150.
- 4K upscaling
- 2D to 3D conversion
- WiFi and Bluetooth enabled
- Miracast mirroring
Home Cinema - Other Essentials
So far, we've covered the basic gear you'd need for a home cinema. But it's not a cinema if it doesn't have the appropriate ambiance. So here's a bunch of essentials you might want to check out to get the ultimate cinema feel:
Philips A19 Wiz Smart bulb - Dimmable Lights
When watching a show at night, most people don't enjoy being plunged into complete darkness after the lights are off. This is where dimmable lights come in handy, and the budget-friendly Philips A19 Wiz is the smart choice here.
It's not too different from the Philips Hue line, except that this one utilizes Bluetooth instead of WiFi. But overall, you get a lot of bang for your buck with the A19 Wiz, which costs less than $10.
Delivering over 800 lumens of brightness while using only 60 watts, this LED light is guaranteed to save money. With easy set up via the Wiz app, you can control the lights with any Android or IOS device.
Plus, it supports IFTTT, Amazon Alexa, Google Assistant, etc., allowing you to use the bulb using your voice.
With tons of customizable scene settings and schedules, the A19 Wiz smart bulb won't make you feel like you're missing out on much.
Select Blinds - Best Wooden Blinds
Blocking out natural light is the key to achieve a bright, highly contrasted display. This is especially the case with home cinema projectors, and there's nothing better than blinds for this job. But blinds don't always have to be an eyesore - the real wood blinds from Select Blinds ensure that.
Made out of American Hardwood and Basswood, these super chic blinds give a rustic look to any living room. And since they're made out of wood, they block out light on the brightest of days effectively.
You can choose from a multitude of colors and styles, with tons of customizable options at Select Blinds. There's even an option for cordless operation.
If humidity is an issue, we recommend the Better Homes and Gardens Faux Wood blinds from Walmart.
Nostalgia Vintage - Tabletop Kettle Popcorn Maker
Let's admit it: no movie night is complete without popcorn. Even though popping a bag of popcorn inside the microwave would be more convenient, the vintage popcorn maker from Nostalgia Vintage will add a unique touch to your theatre.
This mini cart can pop 2.5 ounces of popcorn in one go, and its tilted door makes it super easy to scoop them out.
Plus, it has a lighted interior with a 360-degree view, acting as a lamp and a vintage decoration piece at the same time. With a beautiful exterior, this tabletop popcorn maker will be the cherry on top for your home theatre.
Buying stuff for your home theatre doesn't have to be expensive, and most of our picks are budget-friendly yet convenient and perfectly capable. Choose the best stuff for the best price with our top picks.