Civilise your system

Accessories can enhance the functionality of your entertainment investment, make it perform better, operate more safely, be better organised and more convenient to use. Justin Worthy makes his selection.

Getting your dream home entertainment system together is a lot of hard work. All the online research, all the comparison testing, all the tech specs listings, all the talking to mates, work colleagues, family and sales people.

Saving up the cash, getting the stuff into your car, getting it home. A lot of hard work. And that’s before you even start hauling it all out of the boxes, battling the spaghetti heap of wiring, sorting out the remotes and picking the tiny but persistent bits of polystyrene off your clothes as you battle to get all the cardboard, paper and other stuff into the recycling bin outside.

So it’s usually several weeks or even months into enjoying your new consumer electronics baby that you realise that it could be better still. And by ‘better still’, we mean a little more convenient, a little more organised, a little safer or just a whole lot simpler.

Accessories aren’t the first thing you may think of when picking up all your new gear, but they could make an appreciable difference to living with it all at home. From the humble cable tie through the obvious AV racks to the potentially strife-saving surge protectors, AV accessories take pride of place in many stores not (only) because they turn a tidy profit for the retailers but because they’re just so damned handy. And, best of all, they’re mostly very cheap to pick up. Over the following few pages, we’re going to show you some of the best examples of AV accessories that could just save your life – or perhaps being a little less dramatic, might at least make it a little more, well, civilised.