Dynamic Audio Stays on the Cutting Edge of Technology

Contributing Editor

HOME THEATRE: Dynamic Audio displays a movie on a big BIG screen at the store’s showroom at 10021 S. Yale Ave. in the Shops of Seville. The gigantic 106-inch screen is just one of a number of choices customers can make in turning a room of his/her house into a luxurious home entertainment center.

DAVID JONES for GTR Newspapers

How the home entertainment center has changed through the years!

In colonial days it was a group of friends warbling around a harpsichord. Mr. Edison put music on a cylinder and the Gramophone enthralled the neighbors. Thanks to Marconi the Metropolitan Opera was delivered to our living rooms and, finally, shortly after World War II, squinting viewers could watch the world through a seven-inch screen. That was then.

This is now!

A person is sitting in his TV room, watching the Dallas Cowboys play the New York Giants. The doorbell rings. He presses a button. In a corner of the TV he sees his best friend smiling at the camera that has been installed outdoors for just such interruptions.

The house is dark. The homeowner presses a few buttons, the front door unlocks, the downstairs lights go on and the next thing he knows his buddy is walking in the room just in time for the second half kickoff.

“The technology is here,” says Pat Smart of Dynamic Audio. “With a single control you can dim or raise the lights, adjust the sound (in more ways than just raising and lowering it), turn off the lights around the house, turn on the security system, adjust the sound of the CD player churning out nursery rhymes in your child’s bedroom, fine tune the temperature and in general control every electronic gadget in the house, all while the Cowboys are in a huddle. You don’t have to leave your chair to do it.

“This is not the stuff of science fiction; it is available now,” says Smart.

Becky and Jeff Sanders own Dynamic Audio Design, which opened its doors last May at 10021 S. Yale Ave. in the Shops of Seville shopping center. Smart, who has spent 30 years selling upscale electronics, is one of their leading salesmen. The staff there will be glad to help customers design home theaters from simple screen and sound systems to elaborate home cinemas complete with theater chairs, popcorn machines and curtains that open and close just as the ones at the ancient movie palaces did before and after a show.

“Twenty years ago such rooms didn’t exist except, perhaps, in extremely rare houses. Ten years ago they were the preserve of only the highest priced homes. Now I’m selling contractors wire rooms in houses in the $300,000 to $400,000 range. The home theater is costing less and less.”

How much less is a combination of personal taste and pocketbook capability. Reasonably wide plasma televisions can be had for less than $1,000 and a sound system added for a couple of hundred more. That, says Smart, is just the jumping off place.

“Five years ago the kind of system we offer as bottom line would have cost about $10,000. Now it is less than half that.”

The first thing, of course, is the screen. Diagonal measurements of 42 inches to 50 inches are commonly available. After that it’s a matter of how far the individual wants to go.

“The biggest unit we’ve installed so far cost about $100,000 and it brought a whole house full of stuff. There was the media room, of course, but there was also a multi-room audio system so the music could follow you wherever you went. We included things like light control and integrated the whole house automation system. It was a complete makeover.”

As usual the electronic world is facing dueling technologies. The 78-rpm record gave way to the 33 1/3 (with a 45 rpm smaller record format lasting a few years). Then came stereo, then quadraphonic sound, but quadraphonic failed because there were two formats and rather than choose either the public choose neither.

Four track tape cassettes were replaced by eight track. Most critics preferred the better picture afforded by the Betamax videotape machine but the public wanted the greater time-per-tape offered by VHS. Two 12-inch videodisk formats fell before the DVD.

Now, Smart says, DVDs are warring with Blue Ray and HD-DVD formats.

Both offer a high definition picture and 5.1 or 7.1 surround sound. The 5.1 system offers five speakers (front right, front center, front left, rear right, rear left) and a subwoofer designed to get those cellar-dwelling low sounds that lesser speakers can’t deliver.

“The great thing about the 5.1 system,” says Smart, “is that you can adjust the sound to them individually. For example, most voices come from the center speaker, so if you’re watching a film and want to enhance the dialogue you can raise the volume on the center speaker without having the rest of the speakers blaring the music and background noise.”

The 7.1 format is enhanced with the addition of two more rear speakers.

This is what is available now. The future holds more goodies, says Smart.

“The old TV sets had a 4:3 ratio that was like the ratio used by pre-1952 Hollywood. Most films now are 16:9. There is a new projector coming out that will offer up to a 2.4:1 ratio, something along the line of the old Cinemascope dimensions.

“The picture it gives,” says Smart, “is incredible. I can’t wait until we have the ability to demonstrate this.

To reach Dynamic Audio call 299-0510 or try the Web site at www.DynamicAudioTulsa.com.

Updated 12-18-2007

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