February 28, 2011
| by Grant Clauser
Above the fireplace is one of the most popular locations for mounting flat panel TVs. The challenge is making a mantel-mounted TV look natural and not like an out-of-place computer monitor. We’ve seen some very innovative approaches to fireplace TV décor, including mirror TVs and retractable art canvases, but sometimes the simplest can also be the best.
When a client came to David Huse, of Theater Advice, Dallas, with a request to put a 46-inch Sony LED LCD TV above the fireplace, Huse knew he had to be creative. Instead of just mounting it directly on the wall above the mantel, Huse bult a custom cavity for the TV and a wood frame painted to match the mantel area. The frame hides the TV’s bezel including the brand logo.
To top it off, Huse networked the TV to the homeowners’ PC so family photos and artwork can be easily displayed when not watching TV or movies.
A cabinet to the right of the fireplace was also modified to hide all the components. To keep with the invisible theater theme, all the speakers were installed in the ceiling, except for the subwoofer, which sits on top of the cabinet, obscured by an artificial plant.
In addition to the TV and surround sound speakers, a four-zone Sonus multiroom music system was installed, which the homeowners control via iPhone and iPad apps.
Grant Clauser has been covering home electronics for more than 10 years with editorial roles in several consumer and trade magazines. He's done ISF-level damage to hundreds of reviewed products and has had audio training from Home Acoustics Alliance and Sencore. He's also the author of the book The Trouble with Rivers
. Follow him on Twitter @geclauser.