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(ARA) – High gas prices, rising movie theater ticket costs and advances in 3-D technology just might make this your year to invest your money in a 3-D home theater, rather than a summer vacation.

Three-dimensional entertainment is the hottest trend, both at home and in theaters, and it doesn’t show signs of abating any time soon. If you’ve already decided to make the commitment to a 3-D TV, it probably makes sense to create an optimum viewing environment so you can get the most enjoyment out of your investment.

Whether you’re creating a 3-D home theater from scratch or upgrading an existing home theater to 3-D, you should keep a few considerations in mind. The home entertainment furnishing and accessories experts at Sanus offer some advice for your 3-D home theater:

Bigger is better

While advances in high-definition viewing mean you can now get a great image on virtually any size set, when it comes to 3-D viewing a larger screen will provide optimum enjoyment. Choose the largest screen you can afford and that you have space for. You’ll also need to arrange seating to allow more distance between the larger 3-D TV and your eyes, to help minimize eye strain. Sanus recommends positioning a TV so your eyes are level with the middle of the screen. For most people, this is between 40 and 60 inches off the ground.

A wall mount that provides a full range of motion, like the VLF311 Super Slim, will make it easier to achieve the proper distance and viewing angle for your 3-D TV. Plus, wall mounting a flat screen more closely evokes the movie theater experience.

Dark is desirable

Minimizing light is important for any home theater, but even more so for 3-D viewing. No matter how good your 3-D set is, if the room is too bright your enjoyment of the images will suffer; 3-D images are significantly less bright than 2-D ones. If you’re lucky enough to have a dedicated home theater room, paint the walls in dark colors. Use carpeting to eliminate reflection off floors, and room-darkening blinds or drapes to cover windows.

Be aware of items in the room that might create reflections such as glass or lights near the screen. Move items away from the screen that might distract your vision. For example, if you choose to wall mount your 3-D TV above a fireplace, remove everything from the mantel beneath it and cover the glass fireplace screen with something nonreflective.

Functional furnishings

After spending the money on a 3-D TV, it would really drag down your home theater experience to have components like your 3-D Blu-ray player sitting on the floor. Furnishings made to house components not only create a neat, orderly environment, they can help protect and preserve expensive electronic equipment.

You can find a wide variety of home theater furniture, from speaker stands to devices that mount components on the wall, at Finally, don’t forget to include a dedicated place to store and charge your 3-D glasses. These costly, delicate devices are essential for 3-D viewing, and it will be more cost-effective in the long run to spend a little bit of money creating a safe spot in which to house them, than it will be to keep replacing lost or damaged ones.

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