What's the difference?

Luxury Home Cinema Room
In collaboration with April Hamilton Architectural Designers

Most people have a perception of what a true ‘Home Cinema’ would look like to them, even if they have not physically been in one - with most visualising a fairly dark room with no natural lighting and a cinema style screen and projector (so a smaller version of the commercial cinemas most of us visited from an early age).

But, when we ask people what they think a ‘Media Room’ is, we are often faced with blank faces or informed guesses! So, what is the difference?

A good Home Cinema should be unmistakable to anyone that walks into it. With a large wide Screen at one end, a few sumptuous rows of seating enticing you to take a seat, no natural light, typically ‘low’ lit feature lighting and directional floor lighting, elegantly designed often with a theme, with no immediate visibility of any speakers and a Projector at the rear of the room though often discretely housed. The emphasis by design will be to optimise the sound and vision within the space, by clever planning, design, acoustic treatment and by specifying the best possible equipment to suit the room and the budget. Once achieved, you will feel fully immersed every time you watch a movie and never want to leave!

A Media room on the other hand is typically different in its look, is more sociable and equally versatile as a more useable space for family & friends. For example; you may be after more informal or cosy seating for the family to chill out in; possibly with a bar or pool table in the room; with brighter lighting than a cinema room; maybe with a large (65 inch + screen) wall mounted TV & surround sound rather than a projector and screen - but either will often work. By clever design and thought both a TV and a projector screen can also be incorporated in the right room, giving different viewing options for different occasions.

What would be your choice - Cinema OR Media Room?

It depends on what floats your boat to a certain degree, though the room size or layout can often be the deciding factor! However, if unsure – no problem – as you don’t necessarily have to make that decision right now, because……

From our initial consultation, we will be able to gain a greater idea of what you are looking to achieve. Then comes the fun part, as we will invite you to a specialist demo facility where you’ll be encouraged to ‘kick off your shoes’, sit back and enjoy clips of some of your favourite films or a taste of the latest Block-buster! We are confident that you won’t be disappointed! This is an important part of the process, as you will experience different room, sound and vision set-ups, which will help you to realise the type of Cinema or Media room that would be perfect for you.

Depending on your location, we have demo venues available in; Berkshire; Bucks; Essex; and Hampshire.

We will then start to work on design ideas, drilling down to the detail, to come back to you and present 3D designs and full specification of our proposed options. An important and often fun part to us in the design stage, as this is where we seek to learn what you or your family have passion for or are inspired by (your favourite sport, TV, Film Franchise, etc), so we can include elements of whatever that is (in abundance or discreetly) to make sure your Cinema or Media room is unique to you!

In summary, from the initial concept design, we will provide a turnkey solution to encompass all elements of the room including the; layout; specification of the sound & vision equipment; style & type of seating; chosen theme (if desired); interior design; acoustic treatment of the room; and any other detail required. By the way, if you already have an interior designer involved in the project then we will happily work with them, or otherwise we have a selection of designers we could recommend to suit your project.

Our ethos is not to rush this process, before the sign-off stage, so that we hit the design brief, produce sound and vision beyond your expectations and deliver a Cinema or Media room that will be the envy of all your friends – to the point they won’t want to go home!!


To discuss your requirements, please get in touch:

T: 0330 058 8200 or fill out our contact form E: tony@vanillasky.co.uk