THX Certified Home Theater program, pt.2

January 25, 2005

ThxSeveral months ago, I wrote a little about the new THX ‘in-home’ certification process. At the time I was working with second hand info and shaky details at best. Now that more is known I thought a small revisit might be worthwhile. launched at CEDIA EXPO 2004, the THX Certified Home Theater program provides designers and system integrators with A/V specifications for the design of dedicated home theater rooms. This isn’t an entirely new concept but does mark the first time THX has targeted the room itself, not just the equipment.

Consumers have many choices when it comes to selecting high performance home theater equipment, yet many home theaters fall short of the quality one would expect from such high performance hardware. THX believes the home theater industry needs a performance benchmark that reflects the user’s desires for high performance home theater. While I wouldn’t disagree with this in principal, I’d have to argue that with other viable certified technicians with training from organizations such as HAA and the ISF, and given THX’s arguably ‘better’ performance when it comes to certifying equipment, I have to wonder if the THX in-home certification program can really deliver the goods. I would imagine that a good HAA/ISF certified technician could deliver 90 to 100% of such a program, to the end user, likely without some of the built-in overhead the “THX” name would bring.

THX states they intend to certify much more than just the equipment going as far as room design elements, furniture, system bandwidth, linearity, noise, acoustic isolation and early decay, to this I’d say a HAA tech could readily handle such determinations. Moving onto video performance THX wants to ensure appropriate brightness, sharpness, luminance and chrominance, again something a qualified ISF technician is more than capable of determining. Now don’t take these comments to mean I don’t support the THX (HTCP) to the contrary the industry does need programs like these, I just wanted to point out some other possible avenues of ensuring your home theater is delivering all it can.

Posted by Bryan Greenway | | Filed Under Home Theater News