I’m a big fan of sports, especially College Football. In previous years I’ve found myself with a game on my main TV, and two games streaming on my home and work laptops. It was a less than optimal viewing experience. I finally decided to treat myself to something I’ve always wanted to do, two full size TVs. After doing research I decided on a Samsung 65” SMART LED TV.
The major decision that I had to make was how to achieve mounting multiple flat screen TVs with the two screen viewing experience, in a decent sized apartment. I laid out a lot of options using painters tape, including a complete reconfiguration of my living room. Ultimately, I decided the best place for the new TV was above the fireplace.
I started researching mounts, and this is when my heart dropped. There were many articles about how mounting above a fireplace is a terrible idea. My fireplace is not a working fireplace, so I wasn’t concerned about the heat, but I was very concerned about something that I had not given thought to and that was the viewing angle.
Many people pointed out that it would be akin to sitting in the front row of a movie theatre. Quickly just trying it from my couch I realized what they were talking about. I thought I would have to abandon my two screen dream, but finally found mounting solutions for this problem.
I found a company that makes a mount that is a single arm that allows the TV to articulate in multiple directions and ordered it. When it arrived, I realized that I would never get rid of the anxiety using this device because I was concerned it would pull out of my wall. My apartment is older and I wasn’t confident in the fireplace infrastructure.
In researching mounts, I had come across the “Down and Out” mount from Dynamic Mounting, but didn’t originally buy it because of the price. Ultimately, when spending this much on a TV, I wanted a mount that I would be confident in, and it has actually provided the perfect solution so I am happy I ended up purchasing it, it was just the one thing I didn’t end up budgeting for really.
The mount allows the TV to pull outward from the wall and then down and further away so that it clears your mantle. A handy guide is included with dimensions so that you know what the minimal distance is you have to mount it above the mantle (based on mantle depth) so that you will safely clear it. I have taken the lazy approach since I rent, not own and was not looking for a truly flawless installation as I anticipate moving someday anyways so I did not paint the covers for the mount.
Because I have a sectional sofa, I opted to spend a little more and get the “swivel” option as well so that I can also angle the TV when it’s pulled down. After a month of having this installed, I really haven’t used the swivel option as much as I thought I would (largely because I watch TV in the same spot on the couch and don’t host a lot of people), but I could see it useful if I did have a large gathering over.
It has allowed me fairly easy side by side viewing now for multiple games because both TVs are now at almost the same eye level. I know a lot of people with multiscreens have posted about the issue of the cable boxes using the same remote signal which is problematic. My makeshift solution was that I put them on opposite sides of the TV so that if I carefully point the remote, I usually hit just the one box, but when I’m watching two games at once I can also hold the remote up and point it straight and hit the “jump” button that also allows me to swap the screens efficiently, too.
This mount, while costly, has been a perfect solution after a month. I’ve had no issues with it and would highly recommend it. Installation is definitely a two person job just to be on the safe side, as you will need to adjust the gas shocks on the mount so that it will perfectly hang and not automatically float upward. The one issue that I think is solvable arises because I use digital optical audio, so when I move the TV up and down I usually end up pulling the digital audio cable out and putting it back in. I think I could solve this by buying a longer cable and properly tethering it to the mount, as opposed to having it hang loose.
All in all absolutely recommend it as a solution for fireplace mounting.