(NewsUSA) - Football season is here, and baseball playoffs are just around the corner, which means it is also time to get your entertainment area in shape for family and guests. Whether your TV is in your family room or a dedicated media room, it takes more than just a big screen to get the most enjoyment out of your viewing experience.
According to the American Lighting Association (ALA), good lighting can significantly enhance movies and sports watching, while poor lighting can be a distraction to relaxing family time.
To make sure your media room has good lighting, the ALA offers these easy-to-do tips:
* Consider reflection. If you've got a big TV, you've got a big surface that acts as a reflector. A bigger screen equals more bounce, particularly with overhead light sources.
* Focus on ambient light more than direct light. A large source of overhead light will cause more glare, which is why ambient or task light -- side lights, sconces -- should be a big focus. Diffuse the light with more light on the walls than on the ceiling.
* Dim it. Most people turn the lights off when watching a movie. You need some lighting to create a balance, so the TV is not the single glowing source, and to illuminate obstacles and steps.
* Light the room in layers. To be properly lit, rooms should have three layers -- overhead, task and ambient. This allows you to have the exact mix of light that works for a particular time, day and need.
* Reduce glare when you can. As much as possible, reduce the amount of natural light with window treatments, and allow artificial light sources to supplement as needed.
Most importantly, whatever your style, there are beautiful decorative lights that can complement the décor and, in the long run, are as important to comfort as a cushy sectional sofa.
Visit your local ALA-member retail showroom to see the newest products and to talk to an expert about media room lighting that is most appropriate and energy efficient for your space. To find your closest ALA-member lighting showroom, visit www.americanlightingassoc.com.