This month we will look at the 'Man Cave' and how to make best use of this dedicated tech space. When we think of the man cave we picture using as much tech as possible be that TV, audio, lighting or gaming.
When considering the layout of a man cave the important thing to remember is that the 'tech' takes first priority, as that is the primary function of the room. In general, the spaces aren't huge so we need to be clever about how we do this.
The focal point of the room is generally the TV and as such we should be looking for the best that we can get. For dedicated TV rooms it is worth going for OLED TVs where the picture clarity is something north of phenomenal and whether you are watching live sport or using it for gaming they really do deliver. If you have the space this 55 inch OLED by LG is a great choice.
LG OLED 55inch http://www.lg.com/uk/tvs/lg-OLED55B7V
So not only should we be looking for a great TV but it should also be given pride of place. That can be by fitting it to the wall as the dominant feature or we can do something clever by using different mounts to have it hidden within joinery or even the ceiling. Future Automation are a company who specialise in these unusual mounts and pretty much anything is possible!
Ceiling lift by future Automation https://www.futureautomation.co.uk/
To look now at how we deliver the sound. As a minimum we should be looking at 2.1 (a pair of left and right speakers with a subwoofer) but depending on the requirement and if the space allows we could go to 5.1 (a left, centre, right plus a rear left and rear right with a subwoofer) for surround sound. If you like to have your speakers on display then, for 2.1, a pair of Bowers and Wilkins 705 S2s working with a PV1D subwoofer would be something quite special which would give you awesome stereo sound with a very powerful subwoofer. To bump this up to 3.1, then adding in a centre channel such as the HTM71 S2 would be fantastic. To increase to 5.1 we just need to add a couple of rear channels, such as Bowers and Wilkins M1s for truly immersive sound.
PV1D subwoofer by Bowers and Wilkins http://www.bowers-wilkins.co.uk/
If you wanted to hide your speakers the why not go for some great in wall options by Triad, which are specifically designed for each location. Using the silver LCRs for the front channels, coupled with some satellite rears and a powerful yet discreet in wall subwoofer to deliver that extra low frequency kick you won't be disappointed!
With the speakers taken care of we need something to drive the sound. Using highly capable speakers we should be looking to pair them up with an AV receiver of the same quality, such as the ARCAM 550 AVR.
With enough power to comfortably drive the speakers along with high quality digital audio converters (DACs) this AVR really delivers. Furthermore, as with all AVRs it can take multiple sources, seven in this case, so we can add in satellite TV, Apple TV, Blu Ray player, games console, pretty much anything with an HDMI input.
The next thing to do is to make sure that the lighting is in line with the tech that we have installed and utilising a lighting control system, such as Rako, allows all the lighting circuits to be programmed and customised so as to ensure that the mood is right no matter what the occasion. https://www.rakocontrols.com/
With the infrastructure in place, then it comes to adding in those extras. With space a premium what could be better than a hidden wine cellar. With man caves usually located down in the basement or somewhere out of the way on the ground floor then this is the perfect opportunity to utilise the space underneath and fit your wine cellar into floor. Once installed, at the touch of a button your wine comes to you, perfectly chilled and ready to drink! http://www.thewinecavecompany.co.uk/
So what's next, can your coffee table be smart? Well a company called Sobro think it can and have done just that by creating a coffee table that not only does what other coffee tables do but also includes a refrigerated drawer for drinks, Bluetooth speakers to connect to your iPhone, charging ports for all devices, and LED lights to add even more of a cool factor to the table.
Sobro coffee table http://www.thecoolector.com/sobro-cooler-coffee-table/
Finally, in this tech heavy space you don't need or want multiple controllers making things confusing! By installing a Control4 processor and universal remote control you can control every element of your room with one simple remote and your man cave is complete!
Control4 - SR260 remote control
For more information on anything mentioned in this article please speak to our AV department who will be delighted to explain any of the systems in further detail.
Other articles in this section