When I'm helping clients with space planning in their homes I get a lot of questions about the TV. Where should it go? What size should it be? How do we arrange furniture around it? Here are some guidelines to setting up your space for optimal viewing and making your room looks great whether the TV is on or off.
1. Set up the TV for optimal viewing. The best vantage point is directly across, with the center of the screen at eye level when sitting down. In most homes, placing the sofa or longest part of the sectional across from the TV provides the most comfortable viewing for the most people. Mounting above fireplaces is usually too high, and I do not recommend it unless it will only be watched occasionally or be seen from a long distance.
2. Consider the size of your room when selecting the size of the TV. There are lots of guidelines for choosing the right size television, but I like this calculation because it provides a range:
Minimum distance (feet) = TV screen size (inches) / 8
Maximum distance (feet) = TV screen size (inches) / 4
Using a 50 inch TV as an example, you should be sitting at least 6.25 feet away and not more than 12.5 feet away for the best experience.
3. Consider how the room will be used when the TV is off. If you plan to use the space for entertaining, arrange the conversation area to be no larger than nine feet in diameter. This will keep your guests from having to shout to be heard, and it may require moving some furniture away from the walls.
4. Make it part of the décor. A common complaint I hear is that the TV is ugly: a big black hole that contrasts sharply with the much lighter walls. To make it appear more integrated, add artwork or tall shelving around it to take some of the focus away, especially when the TV is off
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Make it fab!