We Americans love our entertainment. Whether it’s watching movies with families or friends, or catching up on a favorite TV show, we watch. As a matter of fact, the Neilsen Company (you know, the folks who rate and report on which shows get watched the most) recently reported that a jaw-dropping 96.7 percent of homes in the United State have televisions.
We even design our homes (to some degree) around televisions. Home entertainment rooms have become increasingly popular. Home theaters were once considered a splurge, but many homes have them now. Chances are, you have a room in your home where the main function (at least part of the time) is watching TV.
Whether you’re checking on the news, watching a show, streaming a movie, or catching up on Facebook, where you have your television positioned makes a difference. The choice you face isn’t just which room should host the TV (although that’s important, too), but at what height to set your TV.
Height matters. If you’ve ever gotten to a movie theater late and had to sit in the front row, you know how that feels. It’s uncomfortable (talk about a pain in the neck!) and it really spoils the experience. So what’s the optimal height?
Forgive this statement of the obvious, but ideally you want the center of your screen to be at eye level. Most of the time, that’s roughly 42 inches above floor level (given typical living room or family room seating.
Of course it’s not just height that matters. Distance from the screen is also a big factor. If you have a newer HD TV your optimal viewing distance should be roughly 12 feet away from a 60-inch set. That’s not a hard and fast rule, but it is a pretty fair approximation.
Does that apply across the board? Not necessarily. Some rooms (such as a multi-function recreational room) are really designed for people standing around (at a wet bar or a pool table for instance). In those rooms you can hang a set higher. Also, distance from the screen is less of a factor because people will likely be moving around.