Buying an entertainment center doesn't have to be hard. With the right tools, information, and options, it can actually be a fairly straightforward process. Entertainment centers are often one of the main focal points of your living space-so along with choosing the proper size and type, you want to find a style that fits your taste and decor. They come in different sizes and configurations, so they can hold everything from your television and audio equipment to movies, DVD players, and gaming systems.
What Type of Entertainment Center Fits Your Needs?
There are two main types of entertainment centers, and they are defined, ultimately, by their size. Both TV stands and entertainment walls come in a wide variety of styles and designs, but entertainment walls have more storage options and configurations.
A TV stand, sometimes known as an entertainment console, is what the TV sits on. Many people have room for only the single console without the additional shelves. Even though these come in lots of different styles and designs, storage options are a little more limited because these are smaller pieces. [–]
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An entertainment wall includes both the TV stand and the connecting towers and bridge, or hutch. Entertainment walls are both tall and wide, so they serve as a major focal point in your living space. Plus, all their shelves provide you with plenty of storage and display space. [–]
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How Do I Choose the Right Size Entertainment Center?
Measuring your room is an important step in determining what type of entertainment center is best for you. It's also important to have the correct scale to ensure that it doesn't overpower or underwhelm your room. You want it to look proportionate to the space and the other furnishings.
After determining whether a TV stand or an entertainment wall is the best option for your room, you will need to ensure that your television, and any related components or accoutrements, will fit in it.
- How to Measure for a TV Stand: The television measurement that a manufacturer provides is the diagonal measurement from one corner of the screen to the other. It does not include the frame that surrounds the screen.
- Rule of Thumb: Your TV stand should be a minimum of 2 to 4 inches smaller than your TV manufacturer measurement. For example, a 42" television should sit on a TV stand that is a minimum of 40" wide .
Find Your Style
After you know your measurements and functionality, you need to choose your style. Classic Traditional pieces consist of warm wood tones and detailed carvings or inlays. Contemporary stands will have straight lines and minimalist features. An entertainment center that combines these two styles has a Transitional design. If you're not sure what kind of style fits your personal taste, check out our style guide to see what kind of entertainment center would look best with your decor.
Things to Remember
Plan ahead! You should know the measurements of any audio devices, gaming consoles, or other components in order to ensure that they will fit in your entertainment center. The number and size of the components will help determine what kind of entertainment center you need.