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THX Program Certifies Home Theater Rooms

More than 20 years after it developed quality-assurance standards for movie-theater sound, THX released quality-assurance standards for residential home theater rooms.

Here at the CEDIA Expo, the company unveiled a THX Certified Home Theatre program that provides designers and system integrators with audio and video performance standards for designing dedicated home-theater rooms.

The program’s specifications include guidelines for room layout and design, acoustics, lighting, background noise, equipment positioning and installation. THX plans to partner with system integrators and custom designers as well as manufacturers as part of the program, which “promises to offer dealers and integrators a premium product, enabling them to improve market share and revenues in a highly competitive industry,” the company said.

The program is an extension of the company’s consumer-electronics product-certification program and its program for certifying professional mixing studios.

“Home theater rooms with the THX Certified Home Theatre plaque on the wall will deliver an exceptional level of audio and video performance,” said THX’s president Joseph Lias. “Because the THX brand represents superior quality, we are confident that the THX Certified Home Theatre program will be embraced by the professional designer and integrator communities as well as home theatre enthusiasts.”

The program will require the use of THX-certified components where possible, said product line director John Dahl, but “since we don’t have a certification for display products at this time, we will work with our integrator partners to make recommendations.”

Besides using THX-certified products, installers will also have to perform an acoustic analysis of frequency response in the room. “Having THX-certified components is just half of the equation,” Dahl said. “The other half is how the components are placed and calibrated, and how the design of the room affects the picture and sound experience. The only way to deliver an accurate presentation is by requiring standardized audio and video measurement techniques and performance.”

Down the road, THX will extend its certification program to such products as acoustic wall treatments, Dahl said. “We are examining several home theater-related products to incorporate into this new certification program.”