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Retrofit your old entertainment center to accommodate a new flat panel HDTV
by Steve Hartfelder

Entertainment Center That Was Modified From Mitsubishi PTV to Samsung Flat Panel TVIf you are a fan of the Princess Bride then you will undoubtedly know there is a difference between mostly dead and all dead. In the movie, Miracle Max is able to revive Westley from his "mostly dead" state so he can continue his adventures and storm the castle.

While we can't offer you one of Miracle Maxs' magic pills we can help you breathe life into your existing entertainment center. We are able to modify old furniture systems designed for analog TVs to proudly accommodate the latest flat panel sets.

Take a look at our before and after photographs then scroll down to learn how we can modify your furniture.






Before and After Photographs of Furniture Modifications

TV Armoire Designed for old CRT TV - Before TV Armoire Retrofitted For New Flat Panel TV
Cherry TV Armoire Before TV Retrofit Upgrade, Tube TV Cherry TV Armoire Modified For Flat Panel TV and Yamaha Sound Projector
Media wall had TV sitting in front, messy wires, before retrofit Media wall after retrofit with tv mounted to furniture wall
Natural Maple Built In Wall Unit Before TV Upgrade Retrofit Natural Maple Built In Wall Unit After Flat Panel TV Modfication Upgrade
100 Year Old Armoire To Be Modified To Be a Computer Center Cabinet - Before 100 Year Old TV Cabinet updated to be computer armoire after photo
Oak Entertainment Center ready for retrofit to flat panel Oak entertainmetn center modified to accommodate flat panel TV
Projection TV Entertainment Center To Be Modified for a DLP TV Wall Unit Modified For Mitsubishi DLP TV
White TV Cabinet with projection TV to be modified to flat panel, before White TV Cabinet After Modification to Large Flat Panel HDTV
Entertainment Center Made for Projection TV Modified to Flat Panel Before Entertainment Center Changed from projection TV to flat panel TV

How to modify your old entertainment center

There were two primary types of analog TVs sold; tabletop style and floor standing projection style. Let's look at how we can modify furniture that was designed for either type of television.

How to modify an old entertainment center that was designed for a tabletop TV

It is recommended you mount your flat panel to a back wall and an articulating arm when modifying your old entertainment centerTwo defining characteristics of tabletop TVs were size and weight. They were extremely heavy, weighing as much as 350 pounds. They were also very deep, commonly 22-26".

Deep TVs meant deep furniture. A temptation when upgrading these types of furniture systems is to simply set a new flat panel TV inside. On the surface this may seem like a good idea but flat TVs tend to get lost in the depth of large entertainment centers. Further, the screen of the flat panel ends up being recessed several inches from the front of the furniture, significantly reducing the viewing angle (see graphic at right).

The right way to upgrade is to modify your entertainment center to take full advantage of the flat panel TV. This involves installing a back wall and pull-out articulating bracket.

First, we construct a false back wall to be installed in the TV section of your furniture. This back wall will reduce the depth of the TV section making it appropriate for your flat panel. Second, we mount a pull-out articulating arm to the back wall. Finally, we will remove the flat panel TV from its stand and mount it to the pull-out arm.

These modifications provide a beautiful built-in look as your flat panel effortlessly floats in your entertainment center. Further, you will have a significantly better viewing angle as the front of the TV will be about flush with the front of your furniture. In addition, the pull-out bracket makes it very easy to angle the TV towards different seating areas in the room or provides access for cabling and upgrades.

How to modify an old entertainment center that was designed for a floor standing projection TV

Because projection TVs were much taller than their tabletop counterparts the retrofit is adjusted accordingly. In addition to a false back wall and bracket, these modifications include a new TV credenza. The credenza is slipped into place between the two existing towers to provide the foundation for the new flat panel (or DLP*) TV. In most cases we can very closely match the color and style of your existing furniture so the credenza looks like it was original to the system. With the new stand in place the modification is completed by installing the false back wall and pull-out articulating arm.

Modify or retrofit furniture for projection TV to accommodate flat panel

* If you are upgrading to a Mitsubishi DLP TV it will simply rest on the new credenza. Your retrofit would not require the false back wall and pull-out arm.

How to modify an old entertainment center for a bigger flat panel TV

Both types of modifications mentioned above assume we are choosing a flat panel TV that was similar in size to the original TV. Some (my Princess Bride fans) may find that an "inconceivable" suggestion and prefer to get a larger television. Well, you are in luck. Many older furniture systems can be modified to accommodate not only the latest flat panel technology but larger TVs as well, see graphic below.

How to modify a wall unit to accommodate a larger television

What if you'd like a larger TV but you can not change the width of your existing furniture? Most current flat panel TVs are ultra slim (as little as 1-2" thick). By utilizing our back wall and articulating arm it is often possible to have the TV sit just on top of the front edge of the furniture (see example).

Modify a TV Armoire for a larger flat panel TV

How to get started and pricing - Call 800-616-5354

To find out what it would cost to modify your furniture please call us toll-free at 800-616-5354. We will ask you to put together some basic information that will help us recommend the most efficient retrofit. Specifically, what we would like to have:

• A digital photograph of the existing furniture
• Dimensions of the existing furniture
• The approximate screen size of the TV you'd like to upgrade to

You can e-mail the information to steve@diamondcase.com.

Please remember we are a full service electronics retailer. We can provide a complete modification including the furniture, bracket, and television. Yes, our electronic prices are competitive.

So when you call and ask us to upgrade your system, don't be surprised when we say "As you wish."