Back in the day, before smartphones and smart TVs and smartwatches revolutionized the electronics industry, building a home theatre system meant dropping thousands on fancy equipment. After the initial spend, setting the dang thing up was just as daunting: tangled cables, confusing speaker setups, multiple remote controls.
The good news? Today, transforming your laptop into a killer home theatre system is easier than ever -- and cheaper than it’s ever been. The 12 components below will put you on the path to a better DIY viewing experience in no time.
Upgraded memory and a bigger hard drive
What’s the point in setting up an awesome home theatre system if your computer can’t handle an HD stream (or you can’t find that show you REALLY want to watch right this very minute). So consider the system requirements above just a baseline: increasing your laptop’s memory from 1 or 2GB to 3 or 4GB, which runs around $100, will lead to exponentially enhanced video playback quality and a leaner, meaner machine than most new computers. Ditto for a juiced-up hard drive (think 2 or 3TB for around $150-$200), which can store a lifetime’s worth of movies and TV shows AND make things run faster.