The ultimate home entertainment centre has a projector screen, surround-sound speakers and even cinema seating.
If you're a movie buff or a sports fan and really want to immerse yourself in the action, you need a surround-sound system that uses a high-quality receiver to send sound to carefully positioned smaller speakers, and usually one large base box (called a subwoofer). If you don't like the idea of cabling,
there are single-box options that mimic the effect of multiple speakers, as well as wireless systems. Home-cinema kits will contain all you need; amplifier, six speakers, cables and, usually, a DVD player too. These start from around £150.
The receiver can work out the perfect sound balance in your room. The kit bounces sounds from each speaker to a microphone placed where you expect to sit, measuring the ideal delay and distance for each speaker.
The two main types of projector are LCD and DLP (Digital Light Processing); both produce excellent picture quality, although LCDs tend to be cheaper. The projector can be either ceiling mounted or positioned on a table. For occasional use, or smaller rooms, look for short-throw projectors that can sit close to the wall but still produce a huge display.
The big screen
You can use a plain white wall, but it's worth investing in a good-quality screen to reduce reflections and imperfections. The best projectors can be connected to your TV remote control so that when you turn on the projector the screen automatically rolls down ready for use.
Right: Philips Soundbar DVD HTS6100 This all-in-one speaker and DVD fires sound to all corners of the room, recreating surround sound without the extra speakers. It costs £45.