Kaledescape’s Cinema One

The Kaleidescape Cinema One is the ultimate movie player! I for one get so tired of trying to figure out where I put a specific DVD or who I loaned it to. But, with the Cinema One you don’t have to worry about such issues. The device allows you to store up to 1,200 DVDs. This eliminates the problem of having to get up, find the DVD, worry about it being scratch, etc. The best part about this piece of technology is just how user friendly it is. There is one remote…yes, our team gets you all set up with just ONE remote. It is extremely easy to browse through your collection and there are so many search options you can explore with. The device allows you to sort through your movies based on length, year, cast, director rating and title. Just wait, it gets better, you can also bookmark epic scenes from movies and the device is so advanced that you can see the soundtrack from the movie and it will play just that scene that you select. Uploading and downloading movies is easy too. If you decide to purchase a movie then you can go to the Kaleidescape store and download movies directly to your system, all while you remain in your seat. The films also include all of the features that a regular DVD disc might include.

This device is one of a kind and it does not disappoint. It makes the perfect holiday gift and it even comes with a special bonus until December 26th. If you buy the Cinema One then you get 50 FREE movies. This is the first time that Kaledescape has done a promotion like this. It is without a doubt an item and a deal that you do not want to miss out on.

Bethesda Systems Wins Two Electronic House Magazine Home of the Year Awards

Bethesda technology integration firm wins awards in “Best Home Theater” and “Best Master Suite” categories

BETHESDA, Md. – May 9, 2013 – Bethesda Systems, a nationally recognized top-100 technology integration firm, was recently named the winner of two prestigious technology design and installation “Home of the Year Awards” by EH Publishing and Electronic House magazine.

Integration firms from all over North America entered homes and projects into the annual awards competition, which drew Gold, Silver and Bronze winners in 13 different categories. Winners were carefully selected by the Electronic House editorial and art staffs based on all aspects involved in an installation, such as project creativity, innovation, equipment incorporated, obstacles overcome, homeowner priorities met, aesthetics and lifestyle benefits.

“Each year, our Home of the Year Awards competition lets us see the most innovative and creative ways that custom electronics professionals have infused homes with today’s technology, and this year’s entries did not disappoint,” says Electronic House editor Arlen Schweiger.

“We are honored to be recognized by Electronic House magazine for our work on these two projects,” said Michael Wilson, owner of Bethesda Systems. “This recognition is a testament to our dedicated staff’s commitment to provide our customers the best in design, installation and service.”

Bethesda Systems earned Electronic House‘s Silver Award in the category of “Best Home Theater: $25,000 to $75,000” for an impressive installation that perfectly incorporated a 20-foot-wide projection screen into a modern living room to create a functional, family-friendly multipurpose home entertainment area.

To complete the home theater experience, Bethesda Systems equipped the homeowners with an Apple-based home control system from Savant, which allows the family to easily control the entertainment system and various combinations of lighting that include recessed lights, sconces, step lights, lamps and cove lights. Full details of the project can be found at http://www.electronichouse.com/article/design_comfort_keys_to_living_room_theater.

Bethesda Systems also received a Bronze Award in the category of “Best Master Suite” for a project that required the integration firm to design and install a true home theater experience in a homeowner’s bedroom. The award-winning project included the installation of a 96-inch drop down projection screen, hidden video projector, a 46-inch flat panel television and 5.1-channel surround-sound system—all incorporated perfectly into the master bedroom.

A Control4 control system serves as the bedroom’s “brains”, and offers multiple viewing options including: watch TV, watch Movie, switch from TV to Movie, and switch from Movie to TV. The system also allows the owner to select content accordingly (like cable for TV or Blu-ray for Movie), prep the room’s lights and shades and smoothly transition the associated audio to avoid any disturbance such as sound abruptly clipping on and off when the owner moves from the TV to the projection screen. Full details of the project can be found at http://www.electronichouse.com/article/bedroom_home_to_2_theater_setups_96_screen.

For more information on Bethesda Systems, please visit https://www.bethesdasystems.com.

About Bethesda Systems

Bethesda Systems is a leading technology integration firm specializing in advanced control systems, dedicated theaters, media rooms, audio distribution, lighting control, security systems, networks, electrical systems and more. Additionally, Bethesda Systems is committed to the growth of green technology, incorporating the latest advancements in LED lighting, home automation and energy management in residential and commercial applications. For more information on Bethesda Systems, visit https://www.bethesdasystems.com.

About Electronic House

The premier showcase for home technology, Electronic House and electronichouse.com offer inspiration to those seeking to enhance their lifestyles with automation, A/V and more as they buy, build or remodel their homes. Electronic House takes an in-depth look at professionally installed high-tech solutions for the entire home, covering everything from audio and video to automation systems that encompass lighting control, security, climate, as well as the ways technology blends with interior design. Our Homes of the Month, EH Ideas, Possibilities Room and Behind the Scenes installation articles plus Technology Trends, Product Reviews and Learning Center items take readers through the complete process of researching, planning and achieving their high-tech home transformations.
Published by EH Publishing – www.ehpub.com.

About EH Publishing, Inc.

EH Publishing, Inc. is the leading provider of independent business and consumer content and information serving the custom electronics, information technology, house of worship, pro audio, robotics, homebuilding, and supply chain markets through multimedia publications, websites, newsletters, and expos.  Our flagship multi-media products include CE Pro, Commercial Integrator, Electronic House, TechDecisions Media, ChannelPro-SMB, Live Sound International, ProSoundWeb.com, Worship Facilities Conference & Expo (WFX), Robotics Business Review, RoboDevelopment Conference and Exposition, RoboBusiness Conference and Exposition, Supply Chain Management Review, Logistics Management, and Modern Materials Handling. www.ehpub.com.

Now Showing Oblivion, starring Tom Cruise

Have you ever thought of how cool it would be to have your most anticipated movie release available in your home, right away, without waiting in line at a theater?

Bethesda Systems has—and we finally decided to do something about it.

Thanks to modern technology, and our tech-obsessed team, Bethesda Systems can finally offer you the true home theater experience.

In late April, Bethesda Systems partnered with PRIMA Cinema—a system that allows you to view first-run movies in the comfort of your own home—no tickets, no lines, free popcorn.

Cool, right?

The PRIMA system is comprised of a rack-mountable PRIMA Cinema Player and the PRIMA Biometric Reader. Just through internet connection, first-run films are automatically delivered to your PRIMA Cinema Player over the Internet. The Player then outputs A/V over HDMI to the home theater’s display and audio system.

But PRIMA Cinema isn’t just your regular movie player; in addition to streaming just-released movies only available in theaters—and maybe a mere handful of other select entertainment programs and companies—their video is enabled for 1080p24 FullHD for 2D and 3D content.

Yeah, we know you’re thinking, “Ok, 3D, I can get that on another system, no big deal.”


PRIMA Cinema videos offer twice the sharpness of Blu-ray.

Is your mind blown yet?

Well, in case you were curious about the audio, it’s enabled for 5.1 and 7.1 surround sound—which means you practically are living in the movie as it plays on your screen. You know, because the quality is twice as better as Blu-ray already.

Why PRIMA Cinema, you’re wondering? Well, wouldn’t you want the quality and product backed by not only media and technology veterans, but also by one of the greatest major motion picture companies, Universal Pictures?

Yeah, us too. You can’t go wrong if Universal Pictures supports your next home theater purchase.

Sparked your interest? Contact us at 301 656-2548, or by email: sales@fpasupporttest.org.

The Sonos Playbar

In March, Bethesda Systems featured a Sonos powered home theater experience highlighting the Sonos PLAYBAR—the one Sonos piece that really pulls it all together.

The PLAYBAR is Sonos’ stab at television audio, and it works. The soundbar can either be mounted, or sit above or beneath your television. The PLAYBAR can upgrade your television experience by offering excellent sound and delivering a whole new experience to your entertainment.

Why Sonos?

So you want a soundbar, but you want to know why you should choose the PLAYBAR?

It’s easy, and it’s good.


Sonos is all about sound, and all about connectivity. The technology inside the PLAYBAR allows it to recalibrate based on its positioning.

So, say you want to lay it flat, instead of mounting it… not an issue. The nine amplified speakers are mounted at a 45-degree angle, meaning it will produce an equal level of high quality sound while it’s laying flat—you won’t notice the difference, and that makes all the difference. The directionality of the speaker remains the same, so you’ll still get the same experience as a wall-mounted soundbar.

In addition, the PLAYBAR on its own is already a 3.0 home theater system, so it can easily be enhanced into a 3.1 or 5.1 home theater.

How, you wonder?

Well, all you need is more Sonos. To create a 3.1 home theater, pair the PLAYBAR with the Sonos SUB.  To create a 5.1 home theater, just add a SUB and a stereo pair of PLAY:3s.

What Makes a Home Theater?

It’s actually really simple. Home theaters are distinguished based on sound and speaker distribution.

What a 3.1 home theater system really means is: you have three speakers and one subwoofer paired with your television. In a 3.1 home theater system, there is one speaker on the left, one on the right, and one in the front.

The PLAYBAR eliminates the need of three different speakers, leaving you to only require the SUB.

Playbar 3d rendering

So, with a 5.1 home theater system, there are five speakers and one subwoofer. Typically, the speakers are for front right, front left, back right, back left, and one in front and center, all paired with one sub. Since the PLAYBAR itself is already a 3.0 system, all you need is to add a pair of PLAY:3 speakers, and one SUB.

The New Age of Home Theater?

Well, maybe. But if you’re interested in learning more about why a Sonos PLAYBAR is a good, easy fit for you, Bethesda Systems, a Sonos Gold Dealer, has all your answers. Want more Sonos from Bethesda Systems? Check it out here.

Bethesda Systems Upgrades Children’s Inn at NIH

The Children’s Inn at NIH has an all-purpose room for their residents, where the children can watch movies and hang out. In addition, this room serves as a conference room for board meetings. Earlier this summer, the Inn reached out to us seeking a much-needed renovation of this room.

Reaching Out

Bethesda Systems was happy to help. We provided an all-in-one solution, featuring a new projector and a new server for the room. In addition, we transformed each child’s room into smart media room, where they are now able to stream movies, and use the internet right from their own televisions. With several donations set up by Bethesda Systems, the Children’s Inn paid less than half of what the initial renovation costs were.

Andy Cabrera, Bethesda Systems: “The room looked like a school cafeteria before. It was plain, and not livable. When we took on the project, we wanted to create a warmer atmosphere where these kids can really relax on a Friday night.”


We were able to partner up with Runco, a home theater projector manufacturer, and Kaleidescape, another business focused on home entertainment, to provide the Children’s Inn with free new products. Runco donated an LS 7 projector, and Kaleidescape donated a Cinema One movie server.

With the Cinema One movie server, the Children’s Inn was able to upload and store over 25 DVDs for children to watch on the theater system, or in their own rooms. Also featured in the all-purpose room is Apple TV.

In addition, Cuddlebag also donated four of their products to the Children’s Inn too!

Smart Media Rooms

In each room, we incorporated the Google TV interface using Verizon FiOS. Samsung flat panels were installed as well, on an evo wall system.


Successful Home Theater Design

This DC interior designer shares some great tips and insight for building your own dedicated home theater.

Successful Home Theater Design
by Kathy Alexander of Alexander Interiors, LLC

You’ve been dreaming of your home theater and the day has come for you to take the leap. Sitting down with a professional theater designer is very exciting. I’m talking about a designer of the technical equipment who puts the perfect combination together: the projector, the speakers, the screen, the controls, etc. Once all the pieces and parts are selected, the technical designer sees the layout of the space and will map out the type of screen, which wall it will go on, the type of projector, the number of speakers and where they will be located, the number of subwoofers, whether or not you will have an acoustical wall system, and the number of theater chairs.

There are many questions to be answered: How important is it that there be no sound transmission outside the theater? Where will the equipment rack be located, which will be somewhat determined by whether or not you want it visible? Where will the projector be located, which, again, will be somewhat determined by whether or not you want it to be seen?

After all of that, don’t forget the equally important step of creating an interior design that matches your tastes, emotions and desires. The excitement created by a room full of cool equipment fades quickly when you  don’t feel comfortable in your own space. Fortunately, there are a few things you can do that make all the difference in the world.

The best time to consider the interior design of the theater is right after the equipment is chosen. When I plan a theater’s interior design, I will walk the space with the technical designer, who will point out the overall location of the screen, how many chairs, the number and location of the speakers and subwoofers. He or she will let me know if there is an acoustical wall system and whether it will be on all the walls, and perhaps the ceiling, too. By this point, the clients may have already been to the theater showroom and selected the chairs.

Now, it’s time to ensure the theater reflects the client’s preferences and predilections. As with the equipment design, the interior design must consider alternatives to various questions: Will this room be a dedicated theater, or will it be a multi-functional space? A multi-functional space sounds appealing, but it may be at the expense of the acoustics. So, the sound may not be as good as it would be in a dedicated space.

If the theater is on the lower level (i.e., the basement), then the challenge is to create a design that either incorporates expected but troublesome structural elements (e.g., ductwork, columns, beams, etc.) or modify them to minimize their impact on the functionality and beauty of the space. The height of the ceiling can quickly become a critical design element. If there is to be more than one row of chairs, will the ceiling height allow for a platform for the second row? Is the room large enough to accommodate everything the client wants? Will a ceiling-mounted projector leave enough vertical room to walk under it, or will the room be deep enough to permit the projector to be mounted behind the chairs? Any planned steps will have to be lit for safety.

What style theater do you want? Do you want a formal theater or a casual look? Do you want an Art Deco theater or do you want ultra modern? Do you want the space to be a particular theme? If the clients are not sure, then I interview them further and ask them to show me pictures of rooms that appeal to them. The pictures do not necessarily need to be of theaters but rooms in general. What colors do they like? What colors do they not like? Almost always, people can tell me what they don’t like and don’t want. That is important information in the overall design analysis.

If you are going for a certain look or theme, it is preferable to extend that look into the surrounding areas. If the theater is in the lower level, I always look at the home’s main floor to get an idea of the client’s personal tastes, preferences and lifestyle.

Generally, theaters are usually kept dark so the focus is on the movie. If there are windows then it is important that light doesn’t seep into the theater. Shades that fit inside a channel are a good idea for keeping the light out and being inconspicuous.

Speaking of lighting, the artificial lighting is very important. Depending on the look of the theater, star lighting for the ceiling may be a good option. Everyone loves the sconces on the walls that provide the drama, the mood, the decoration, and also allows one to see inside the theater while watching a movie. Be careful to not have the finish of the sconces too shiny. You don’t want the distraction of a reflection from the shiny finish to take away from the movie. If you are going to use the room in ways other than as a theater, don’t forget about those times when you need brighter light for the space, and even brighter when the theater is being cleaned.

One of the items that I notice immediately when seeing pictures of home theaters is the sconces. Be careful about the placement and the size. You want the style of the sconces to enhance the look of the room and you don’t want light shining in your eyes. The mistake I see people make, whether professionals or not, is selecting sconces that are the wrong size. Sconces that are too small or too large are simply going to look bad. Another thing to be aware of is selecting sconces that are too deep and project too far into the room. You don’t want to be running into them as you are getting to your seat.

Theater Seating
Theater chairs have come a long way. You might think that you can put a couple of recliners in the room but it is not going to look or function as well as theater seating. The theater chairs can be a single chair, a loveseat, or a sofa that may be attached to each other to keep them in place. Many recliners have a single movement where the footrest comes up and the back goes down. This is not the most comfortable position for watching a movie. The motorized mechanism of the better theater chairs is the best because you can position your feet up and move the back independent from the footrest. You decide the perfect position to be in. The construction of the better chairs has an all wood frame with wood blocking for stability. This helps to keep the mechanism firmly in place. The better chairs have a seven-point mechanism whereas the lesser quality chairs have only a three-point mechanism. While there is much that can be said about chair construction, the basic difference is between wood frame vs. particle board or cardboard that are stapled together! I highly recommend that you invest in the best quality chairs you can afford. It will be a much better investment and they will last far longer and be far more comfortable. Leather or faux suede upholstery are the most practical for durability and easy clean up.

Whether you want a basic theater or something out of this world, keep in mind that you must build on each decision and ask yourself if each decision supports the look you have decided upon. If a decision does not support the look, then rethink it.

A home theater that is well designed and lovingly furnished will act as magnet in your life. It will attract the family for Friday night movies. It will attract friends for Sunday afternoon games. It will attract children to thrilling adventures and educational documentaries. It might even attract romance—let your imagination run wild. And, it will attract a deeper connection to all those about whom you care deeply.

© 2011 Kathy Alexander. All Rights Reserved

Kathy Alexander is Founder and Principal of Alexander Interiors, LLC, an interior design firm focusing on high-end residential design.

Kathy Alexander may be reached at 703/222-9100,
kalexander@alexanderinteriors.com  / www.alexanderinteriors.com

Case Study: Home Theater

(POTOMAC, MD) Here’s an occasion where a family was already in the process of building a dedicated home theater when they found Bethesda Systems. After extensive online research, recommendations from friends, and even some equipment purchases, their search for the perfect filmscreen lead them to us. Once they met with our skilled staff, and toured our showroom, they saw possibilities beyond their initial vision.

We reassessed their needs and while still using some of the equipment they already purchased, recommended new
components and ideas to complete the job. What we didn’t use of theirs, we were able to re-sell for them. After managing the entire construction and electrical requirements, we provided top-quality design solutions including acoustical treatments, a star ceiling, seating riser, and custom lighting systems. Equipment and components alone are only pieces to the puzzle. The overall design of the space is what will ultimately give you the full cinematic experience — and that’s exactly what our clients wanted.

CLIENT QUOTE: “Bethesda Systems delivered more than they promised. They exceeded our expectations in workmanship, expertise, quality and customer service, and it was amazing how accurate their rendering was to the final product.”

Technician QUOTE: “A job like this doesn’t happen without an extensive amount of coordination. The services we were able to provide extended far beyond selling and installing the A/V & Control Systems. We designed and built the entire room, our Electrical Division took care of all lighting and power needs. Our Client did not have to lift a finger or direct any of the many contractors. This room was delivered turnkey.”, Tim G., Project Manager

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