Welcome to the Cantara Blog

Welcome to the Cantara Blog. Here we’ll post and discuss topics that relate to A/V, Cinema and Control System technology that we find interesting or important. We live and breathe this technology, so we’re always thinking, seeing or working on something interesting and cutting edge.


Laguna Beach Magazine

  The September issue of Laguna Beach Magazine has just hit newsstands and one of our more unique projects was featured in the "Treasured Spaces" article. Our client for this Laguna Beach home wanted a space that would emulate a night club when he was entertaining. We had a lot of fun with this project and love sharing the story behind it. To learn more about the "Treasured Space" we created in this home you can read the full article here.   Thanks Laguna Beach Magazine for including Cantara in your September 2013 issue!

4K Home Theater Projectors

  Many of our clients are asking about 4K and if they can have a 4K projector in their  home theater. The answer is yes, 4K is the next significant shift in the residential home theater industry. That being said, 4K projectors are only appropriate when the screen measures larger than 85" diagonally. Currently the selection of 4K projectors available is limited. Most manufacturers are saying that it is coming just not yet. Electronic House magazine just published a great article about 4K projectors and reasons why they are lagging compared to the abundance of 4K televisions on the market. Hopefully you will find the article as informative as we did.

Important things to consider when selecting the seating for your entertainment experience


There is no question that all seats are not created equal.   Usually, as with all products, you get what you pay for.  When it comes to your comfort and convenience, the best value proposition is to choose a seat that provides several key synergistic elements when making your final selection.   #1 Product Design Like almost any other luxury purchase, the first thing any customer or interior designer experiences is the aesthetic of the product.   Visual, one of the most powerful senses, can drive a purchase.  Of course design goes well beyond the “look”.  There are other components in design, which is actually paralleled in the luxury automobile industry.  In a high end automobile a seat can look luxurious and beautiful but still do a great job of providing comfort and convenience as may people spend long periods of time driving and riding in their cars.   #2 Build Quality The quality of construction and design of a seating product is critical in selecting an entertainment seat that will have a long life expectancy and maintain comfort for years of enjoyment.  Always look at what is happening behind the scenes when making a choice.  Steel construction of all moving parts, quality woods for frame construction and reliable electronics are the benchmark of a great product. A majority of existing products “hide” their inferior materials under the fabric or leathers in an effort to cut corners and costs. This can lead to a very short life expectancy and a lack of comfort when using the seat for any length of time.   #3 Modularity and Customization Everyone has a different sense of what they wish to see and experience when they choose the seating for their entertainment spaces.   It makes sense to consider using a brand that can provide customization of aesthetics and features to provide the client their own exclusive design that is tailored to their specific needs.   Modularity is important to consider too as each space is unique and may require a custom size and configuration to maximize the final layout and utilization.   The finishes are an important step in building a quality product. The standard for most seating is either leather or fabric.  Choosing a brand whose lowest end finishes are better than most of the others high-end materials is a smart way to achieve quality and excellence in the final product.  Integrating fine leathers with perforation can even enhance the experience more and create a softer feel while still providing great comfort and support. Many customers are opting for a more integrated approach to room seating layouts rather than choosing the traditional dedicated theater as in the past. This creates a “mixed use” space.  The use of sofas, cinema seats, lounge chairs and bar stools is becoming more and more popular.  Consider using a manufacturer who can provide a comprehensive selection of all of these disciplines for your entertainment space.  This way you will achieve continuity in design and build quality and maximize the aesthetics, comfort and versatility.   #4 Technology Components and Features There are some basic features to consider when considering an entertainment seat from a comfort and convenience perspective.  Most existing products in the channel feature a “one motor” system that controls the “recline” or “incline” function of the seat.  This translates into the backrest reclining and the footrest extending simultaneously.  A much more compelling option is to provide a seat that has independent control of the backrest and the footrest for more versatility in comfort selection.  In addition a majority of entertainment seats do not include a headrest that can articulate to provide support of the head and neck while in the recline position.  This adjustability is a critical component in providing comfort when viewing the screen and reclining the seat to achieve desired comfort. Again, following the path of the luxury automotive industry, having options like motorized headrests, adjustable lumbar support, memory and preset functions and, the ability to control all motorized features using your remote control or automated home system should be considerations to provide comfort and convenience for your entertainment seats.  After all, you are going for a two to three hour ‘drive’ when you sit down to watch a movie, why not have the same comfort for this as you would when you are riding in your automobile?!   #5 World Class Customer Support Everyone likes to feel that his or her needs and requests are important and being addressed in a timely manner, this is true in dealing with any quality product or brand.  It is equally important to choose a product that can provide quick reactive support for any issues that might happen. Obviously we all hope, in a perfect world, that there are never issues or failures but this is never going to be the case 100% of the time.  Choose a dealer and manufacturer who will offer and stand behind this kind of service and commitment.