If you’re a fan of 3D Imax movies but don’t like paying double the price of an average cinema ticket to be surrounded by people noisily eating popcorn, then here's some good news: the company is offering to install its full theater experience in your own home. The bad news is that even the basic system costs a massive $400,000 – and you’ll need to pay extra to secure new Imax releases.
As reported by Bloomberg, the Imax private theater division is aiming to bring a smaller version of its 60-foot-wide, 45-foot-high, curved screen cinema system to homes of high-net-worth individuals.
The home system's starting point is the “Palais” setup, for theaters up to 75 square meters. For $400,000, you get the dual 4K 2D/3D Projectors, a 10-foot-tall screen, that famous teeth-shattering Imax sound system, a touchscreen remote, and seating for seven to eighteen people.
If Palais isn’t up to your standards, you can always opt for the larger “Platinum” setup. This version comes with seating for up to 40 people and costs $1 million. There's also a version in the works that's half the size and price of Palais called "Prestige."
In China and the Middle East, the home cinemas will ship with Imax Home Premier set-top boxes. The devices, which are secured with fingerprint scanners, pipe-in the latest Imax releases, with additional fees for each rental.
In the US and Europe, the Home Premier box will costs an extra $10,000 plus rental fees. Though this probably won’t be an issue for people who have a spare half a million dollars to spend on a home cinema.
“It’s not just about uber-opulence, it’s also about privacy,” said Lucie Greene, worldwide director of JWT’s Innovations group, to Bloomberg. “Visibility in public spaces, and in the digital space, and public knowledge of their whereabouts is increasingly something [ultra-high-net-worth individuals] are mindful of and spending money to step away from.”
The system is a full multimedia setup that can cater for Blu-rays, high definition television, karaoke and, excitingly, gaming.
Private home theaters are increasing in popularity. Prima Cinema – a company that Imax has a stake in – offers a $30,000 hardware setup that delivers movies direct to users’ homes on the day of their cinematic release at a cost of $500 (for a 24 hours period) per film.