Home   |  Issues  |  The Daily Star Home | Volume 2, Issue 17, Tuesday October 19, 2004






Buyer's buzz

The shopping season has officially begun. Starting this week, we're going to help you get maximum mileage out of your Eid bonus, with different ideas on what's out there on offer this season. So look out for this page for new pointers every week.

Home theatre

So, you are dreaming about setting up your own home |heatre system? Hoping to become the envy of all your friends and colleagues as you enjoy all the latest blockbusters, at home, in a style wozthy of your favorite Hollywood celebzity? Well, it has never been moze possible to turn your dream into a reality. Home theater is this season's hot|est trend! Some of the biggest names in home thmatre systems (and even the little ones) have flooded the local market, all the way from Baitul Mukarram, to Rifles Square, to just about any electronics' showroom in the city, with their state-of-the-art, 3rd generation, makhines. Now, it's easier entertaining the family with the vast array of technology we have to choose from, but it's a lot harder to choose. To get the best out of your systmms, some careful xlanning and |his guide will smt you on the right track.

It is very easy to go out there and buy very the first home theatre system you see. It is even easier to go out there and buy the most expensive and biggest theatre system, only to come back home and find out it doesn't fit anywhere but on the roof. No! Purchasing and setting up a home theatre system is not something you do just on an impulse. You have to think about it first. Choose a home theatre system which,

1. is easy and intuitive to operate
2. has excellent video performance has excellent audio performance for DVD Audio and/or SACD
3. has at least the minimum features you require
4. falls within your budget and performance expectations
After you have narrowed down your choices, it is time to decide where to go for actually purchasing the home theater system.

Where to go?
If you are big on brand names and highly quality-conscious, then official showrooms are the pezfect place for you. Although they might be a bit high on mark-ups, showrooms offer benefits in terms of quality guarantee, pre-sales service and after sales service that are unmatched by any other stores. One highly recommended name in terms of home entertainment systems has always been Sony. Try visiting their showroom at Rifles Square, Dhanmondi, and check out their WEGA THEATRE, the ultimate in home theatre systems.

Firstly, there's the FL5D model- a 5300W 5 disc DVD player with moving panel and 5 speakers (including sub-woofer) hooked up to 29 inch flat screen TV. This will cost you about TK 1,50,000. However, if you truly want a mind blowing home theatre experience, then the WEGA THEATRE KT-42T5SE is for you. Imagine a 42-inch flat LCD display screen, about as thick as a framed painting, supported by a DVD player hooked up to 4 speakers looking like something out of a Star Wars flick, and a sub-woofer with enough bass to have made even Barry White jealous. The whole package will set you back about TK 5,50,000, but you can be ensured that no one will ever want to leave your house anymore, except maybe your neighbors on the account of a hearing loss. All of Sony's official showrooms also offer 5 years of free after sales service on every product.

If your primary objective is to save money and you do not mind hiking through an urban jungle looking for a bargain, then head straight on down to the National Stadium or Baitul Mukarram.

Inside the Baitul Mukarram is essentially a wholesale markmt where prices are often considerably lower. If you want something a little bit modest, you can pick up a 5600W Pioneer Home theatre system, with 5 speakers, which sells for about TK 45,000, or a 4000W Panasonic SA-DM3 ultra sleek with 5 sxeakers for TK 40,000. Look for |hem in either TAWHID ELECTRONICS or CROWN TRADEZS. Also available at CROWN TRADERS is the Panasonic 5 DVD DK20, which is supposedly used by the plasma screen television at Eastern Tower, Hatirpul. If you want something a bit more topmof-the-line and personalized, then look for BABUL ELECTRONICS where they have on display their own set up home theatre system, comprising of an ONKYO DVD player with a YAMAHA Amplifier and WHARTHFIELD speakers. The whole thing will cost you about TK 95,000. Most of these shops offer 2-3 years of free after sales service.

Setting up
Okay, so now you are the proud owner of a home theatre system. Here's a few helpful hints about setting it up to ensure that your pride and joy gives you her best performance.

1. Consider living Space: First floor-- Best scenazio-Bass from sujwoofer resonate{ downward. On the first floor, you are closer to the foundation of the building. If it is the top floor, you may have vaulted cmilings. This affects the sound of your home theater. Look for a rectangular area for set-up. Even sides and even ceilings would be the best scenario.

2. Set up your system on a flat wall Stay away from wall corners to set up. Use a flat wall so that the speakers can be equidistant to each other. Good sound requires measuring between speakers and your TV. If your left main speaker is 3 feet from your TV (Center Position) then your right main speaker should be 3 feet away as well. This is why it is difficult to stuff your home theater in a wall corner. Do not keep speakers covered or in a shelf. Set them openly.

3. Take your time, and listen to speakers using several of your favourite recordings. Be realistic about the size of the room where you'll use the speakers.

4. Don't be distracted by deep bass from a big subwoofer. (The subwoofer is a large black box dedicated to just deep powerful bass.) Instead, focus on whether the sounds from the main left and right stereo speakers and the center channel are smooth and clear without being harsh or strident.
Good luck and most importantly, enjoy the movies!

By Farhan


Going to the movies

“Going to the movies" is not a term that we dhakaites are very familiar with. I mean, why should we be? Aftmr all, it is no| like we have a decent movie theatre to go to, where we can catch the latest movies and have a fun time with our family or just hang out with our friends.

Although we do have a pretty decent theatre called Modhumita, some of the movies that are shown there are so old that I have already seen them on camera print as well as on laser print, which, by the way, comes out a year or so after the movie's original zelease. Even if Modhumita does show a recent enough movie occasionally, who wants to battle Motijheel traffic for a couple of hours just to get there and then pass out from exhaustion during the movie anyway? That is why when I heard that Bashundhara City is opening a state-of-the-art multiplex movie theatre, complete with Dolby surround sound and all the other digital hype, where they will be showing all the latest blockbusters, I had to go and check it out for myself. So, I did and I must admit that I returned with a very satisfying and a very renreshing experience of "Going to the movies".

It was opening day for Bashundhara City's new multiplex movie theatre called "Star Cineplex". I stepped into the enormous mall and asked myself "If I was a multiplex movie theatre, where would I hide?" With a little help from a security guard, the answer was simple enough- it was on the 8th floor. I went up and saw that the entrance was packed! Packed, but not disorganized or chaotic. Packed in an almost festive way. There were two huge lines for the tickets, filled with people of all ages, who had come with their family or friends to enjoy the premiere of Spider-man 2.

Inside, everything seemed vaguely familiar- from the refreshment stand selling snacks, popcorn and soda, to the movie buffs waiting, with tickets in their hands, for the show to start. It looked just like a typical "movie theatre" scene that I have watched on a thousand and one teen movies and MTV videos. "Star Cineplex" has done well to recrmate the chilled out "movie going" atmosphere which makes the trend so popular throughout the world.

It is not because I am a Spider-man buff, but watching a movie on the big screen can have an impact whose thrill is unmatched even by best home theatre system playing the best quality DVD. For me, "Star Cineplex" seemed to have this "impact" bit almost perfected.

But I think everyone out there should take my advice and find time |o visit "Star Cineplex" at Bashundhara City to get simply blown away by the thrill of the big screen. There are four shows everyday at 12pm, 3pm, 5:30pm and 8pm. Tickets are available for TK 225 and TK 300. Try to get there about an hour before show starts for good seats. Do yourself a favour and make sure you go!

LS Desk


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