Whenever high net worth individuals gather, they like to row over who has the best home cinema. Well now there's a special attack that allows instant victory in such an argument: having an IMAX in your house.
It is pretty hard to trump having a full-on IMAX cinema in your subterranean space. But it can be done: Ideaworks and IMAX have teamed up to offer IMAX Private Theatre to UK dwellers for £1.8 million. The full list of what you get is below, but here's the summary:
You get dual, "commercial-grade" 4K projectors, promising 2D and 3D, native and upscaled images of a quality (and size, if you've got the space) that's very hard to beat.
There's also access to 200 IMAX films of recent vintage with instant access, via the web, to new ones on the day they hit cinemas, via the same "Day and Date" download system used in modern cinemas.
You also get the design and installation of a full home theatre with, interestingly, as many seats as you can fit - your 1.8 million is flexible here.
You can also use the system for gaming and standard TV - something like Game of Thrones or Netflix's 4K streams should look great, though we're not sure the One Show would look quite as peachy. Quirkier features include the ability to spilt the screen into four separate streams - multiple football matches during the World Cup, for instance - with the option to have both 3D and 2D frames up there simultaneously. Quite why you'd want to do that, we don't know, but it is technically very impressive.
To summarise further:
It's a f**king IMAX! In your house!
The pricing seems calculated to attract top earners, oligarchs and other euphemisms for "very rich guys with amazingly thick hair for 50-somethings", being expensive but not wildly so if you're a billionaire, especially when you think of it as an all-in price.
Now, by definition, it's a hard thing to show off on a non-IMAX screen (yesterday's launch was at UK and Europe partner Ideaworks' space, where they have a mere HD cinema setup) and the reduced screen size means you have to ask, "Is it really the full IMAX experience?" So we'll reserve judgement until we've seen it in action, but it's hard not to get excited/envious about, right?
Clearly, you're not going to be wanting to mess about with the cables on this kind of setup, so there's a five-year, 24/7 maintenance plan included in the price. IMAX claims it will be able to fix most issues remotely from its Toronto HQ, but if not, an engineer will turn up at your abode within 24 hours, spanner in hand.
So anyway, here's the full spec list for you to start talking to your AV people about. Oh, and you'll be needing a room that can contain at least a 10ft-tall screen, plus space behind for a projection booth.
What you get for your £1.8 million
Design and Installation of your own, personal IMAX
Dual commercial-grade 4K projectors
Curved wall-to-wall, floor-to-ceiling screen (size variable to fit space)
Seats (number variable to fit space)
IMAX surround sound technology
Laser imaging used to set up sound system
Handmade speakers, customised according to the installation space
Five years of cover and 24/7 technical support
Access to 200 films pre-loaded onto system, these include the best IMAX releases from recent years, plus instant access to new IMAX cinema releases via Day and Date online system
Ability to play video games, Blu-rays, DVDs and live/satellite/cable TV - "The system makes an HD feed look even better as a result of IMAX technology that enhances any image or content to be shown on it," IMAX says
Four-screen multi-screen with option to show 2D and 3D simultaneously
Image credit: TK Theatres