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TV Stands: Your Guide to Function and Style

You have already conquered the (sometimes daunting) challenge of deciding on your new flat screen TV and now you’re asking yourself, “What are my choices of TV stands for big screen TVs?” You know you need your TV stand to be functional and good-looking while delivering the best viewing experience possible.

A simple  beginning guidance to buying TV stands is deciding which features are most important to you and moving forward from there. Fortunately, there are already tons of options available and once you choose what’s important to you, finding the right size and look will be a piece of cake.

First, ask yourself: Do I want to complement the décor already in-place or go for a contrasting look? Do I need lots of nooks and crannies to store components, wires, and things like DVDs and video games? How big does it need to be? Asking these questions early makes narrowing down choices much easier when it comes time to make the final decision.

There is no on-size-fits all TV stand

When all else fails, read the instructions. Check the TV’s accompanying manual to find the exact dimensions of the unit’s base and screen size. You want to make sure the stand you choose is both long and deep enough (and strong enough), to hold your new flat screen TV. Make sure your TV won’t hang over the front or back edge of the TV stand.

Consider you interior design philosophies as well.  You may opt to go with one of the TV stands that is slightly wider than your TV. With room for speakers other accent pieces, these TV stands can become a functional piece of decorative furniture that add a bit of your style to the room.

Make sure the height of the stand is right for you too. Consider the room and seating position then ensure the stand keeps the screen at a good level. You don’t want to have to strain to get a good viewing angle.

The Style Could Influence the Whole Room

TV stands are constructed of a variety of materials. There are wood, metal, and glass options that can change the look and feel of an entire room.  While they all have the same basic functionality, glass and metal TV stands have a more modern feel, untreated wood is more rustic, and treated/stained wood has a classic feel.

Some TV stands have built in flat screen TV mounts that raise the screen above the stand to an optimum viewing height. There are a few TV stands that can even be wall-mounted themselves, raising the entire unit off the ground about a foot. These can give a classic wooden stand a modern feel, and can have tilting/rotating features to help combat glare.

Pro-Tip: When choosing a glass TV stand, make sure it’s tempered glass. Tempered glass is four to six times stronger than traditional glass and should be clearly marked.

Are you a spacing-saving minimalist? There’s a TV stand for that!

Corner TV stands are designed with right-triangles to fit snugly against two walls, and platform TVs are simply one or two upright shelves with no backing or sides. Both these options are perfect for smaller entertainment rooms or bedrooms. Of course, you will sacrifice things like storage space for the minimalist look.

There are small, wall-hanging, flat screen TV mounts that have additional shelving built-in called “wall furniture” that mount your new flat screen TV stylishly against the wall, and also gives room for storing a cable box or other components on shelves connected below.

Hutches, Credenzas, and Cabinets Oh My!

Credenzas tend to have more storage than a standard TV stand for other living room essentials like blankets, pillows, and such.  Hutches allow you to conceal the TV and other electronic components away from view when they aren’t being used and are perfect for those who don’t want the TV to be a main focal point. Cabinets can even have wheels so you can maneuver the TV to avoid glare or relocate to a different room.

Storage and Cable Management

Is there going to be a DVD/Blu-ray player? Cable box? Video game console? These are all going to need their own space on stand and bonus points if these nooks, cabinets, and drawers are properly vented to keep the component cool when in use.

Look for a stand with cable holes as well. While proper cable management requires more than just a stand, these cable holes will keep all your cables streamlined and easily located/routed.

The Bottom Line

While you need to be sure that the stand is largest enough to fit your new TV, and strong enough to support it, most of the decision comes down to your personal style. You may already have a theme or color scheme in place, and the TV stand needs to fit right on. On the flip-side, the TV stand may become the focal point of the entire room so choose something that’s both functional with your needs, and has the decorative touch that creates a feeling for the entire room.

Think you’re ready to pick out the third most important feature your entertainment room (behind the couch and actual TV)? Take a look at all of Abt’s TV’s stands and let us know what you think in the comments?

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