What to look for in a surround sound system
There are a few things you should consider before dropping hard-won dough on a surround sound system.
With speakers, you usually get what you pay for. Still, an inexpensive sound system is loads better than your TV speakers.
As far as AVRs go, conventional wisdom would suggest you can cut costs by going with a cheaper one. The differences between cheap and expensive AVRs are less noticeable than the differences between cheap and expensive speakers.
For smaller rooms, you’ll be fine with a 5.1 surround sound system. Larger rooms might require an additional subwoofer, so a 5.2 system would work. For really large spaces, consider 7.2 or higher.
Install and setup
Setting up your first surround sound system can be tricky—it entails taking multiple measurements, drilling holes, running wires (possibly in sneaky places).
You can find beginner-friendly guides on YouTube, and self-installation can save you a good chunk o’ change. But there’s no shame in asking a handy friend or relative for help—or even hiring a pro.
Make sure your receiver of choice has enough ports to connect all your gear. Many modern options also offer wireless connectivity, such as Bluetooth, which makes streaming music from your phone super simple.