January 28, 2013
| by Grant Clauser
4. Do pay attention to your audio system. Just because it’s football, doesn’t mean you don’t need to hear it on a good sound system. All that important commentary will be coming from your center channel, so you want to make sure it’s working properly. The half-time show will feature mostly music, which will sound a lot better on your properly balanced and tuned surround sound system than from your TVs tiny speakers.
5. Do adjust for lighting. Because you’ll likely have your room lights higher than if you were watching a movie with the family, a slightly brighter picture setting can be helpful. Many TVs have day and night modes sub for this purpose.
6. Do have your tablet or smart phone handy for checking scores, stats and chatting with others (over Twitter, Facebook or whatever) to make the game more communal. There are tons of sports apps, including the official NFL app, that will give you more info than what’s on the TV screen alone.
7. Do cheat a little on your surround-sound system and give the side and rear surrounds a boost. CBS does an above-average job mixing their live sports broadcasts for surround, but you can give your party even more of a “there” feel by piping up the crowd noise that comes in through the surround channels (just not so loud that your guests can’t hear the main action).
Can you guess what football hero owns this home theater?
8. Do create a music playlist to have playing over your whole-house music system during the seemingly endless pre-game coverage. Have fun with it, maybe throw on some artists and bands from the San Francisco and Baltimore areas. That will give you a good excuse to transition from the Grateful Dead to Huey Lewis and the News on the same track list.
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.