Now that you've invested in a new big screen TV, not only do you need to figure out where you're going to put it but also what type of TV stand or TV mount you're going to use. There's no shortage of TV stand designs and materials out there, but given the many different sized TVs, storage cabinet spaces, and decorating preferences, it can still be quite the chore finding the stand or mount that's right for your home. In fact, finding your TV stand may end up taking more time and energy than finding the TV itself.
TV Stand Materials
The most common building materials are steel, wood, glass, and acrylic. Steel stands are usually self-assembly kits for DIYs. Steel stands don't match every home decor, however. Plexiglass or clear acrylic offers a classier look, and although more expensive, are safer for you and your TV. These stands also typically offer more tailored home entertainment shelving. Wood TV stands are great for a strong, classy, and customized stand. You can build them yourself, buy them at a furniture store, or have a woodworker custom build your TV stand.
Lower end TV stands are also available in wood veneer, laminates, and medium density fiberboard, but these stands may have difficulty safely supporting your big screen TV for its entire lifetime. They are also more susceptible to getting nicked up by the vacuum cleaner or kids. In general, you'll want to double check the weight capacity for your TV stand and the weight of your TV.
TV Stand Design
More than just the material, the design of your TV stand can have a dramatic effect on both your decorating options and the functionality of your TV. Pedestal stands enhance the sleek look of contemporary decorating. Swivel stands will allow you to modify your TV viewing angle for different seating arrangements. Stands can even be tailored for corner TV placement, a must for some rooms where there simply doesn't seem to be any other place for the TV. Stands are now available with motorized lifts for truly mobile big screen TV placement.
Of course, even the best designed stands can't match the sleek look of TV mounts for your flat screen TV. If you want a truly minimalist design or want a big screen TV but have limited space, TV mounts will allow you to affix your TV to the wall and take up no more space than a wall hanging. Even more than stands, TV mounts should be planned and designed at the same time as the purchase of your TV. Unlike stands with some resemblance of old-fashioned plugs and cords, a wall-mounted TV runs wiring through the wall, which isn't a huge deal, unless it's done incorrectly. Unless you know what you're doing, it's probably best to leave this type of installation to a professional. That said, there's no substitute for a wall-mounted TV. Not only do they save space, they more closely resemble the cinema experience for homeowners attempting to build a realistic home theater.
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If you still don't know what you want, or if you know what you want but can't find it out there, it's time to talk to a professional. Interior decorators do much more than pick out colors and patterns. They'll be able to assess the available space for your big screen TV and help you decide where the best place for it is and how it should be supported. A handyman can probably help you assembly a TV stand or basic TV wall mount, although you may need to talk to an electrician for complicated wall mount assemblies.