Have you ever wondered how many different ways are there to hide you're TV in the home?. based on the animation image above you can count 7 different methods right away. Each of these methods uses a different technology and a different set-up. Lets go through each one from left to right.
1. Sliding Cabinet Cover Hidden TV
In this hidden TV type of set-up the TV is fixed into position and does not move but a part of a cabinet slides over to cover the TV. The cover could also be a painting or some other piece of artwork, but it really becomes a part of the entire cabinet that the TV is installed in. To create this type of hidden TV project the panel would be mounted onto a pair of long extension Drawer slides. We say Long extension because the width of a TV can be quite wide and so regular drawer type drawer slides from a typical Home Depot store will not work. You need long stroke Slides to move a large panel like this 3-5' in length. Secondly you need then a Linear Actuator to do the pushing and pulling of that panel. Now the good news is that this type of setup requires very little force, so a larger Linear Actuator can be used or even a Track actuator. Both will work fine, its just a question of how much space is available in the cabinet for the Actuator to be installed.
2. Pop-up TV from Cabinet hidden TV
This type of Hidden TV project is very common. A Pop-up TV Lift mechanism is used and installed in a cabinet. The only real options you have here are what size of TV you wish to Lift, and what type of Lid system do you want. These TV Lifts come in different stoke heights that they extend, so a smaller TV can get away with a smaller stroke or a larger TV will require a Large stroke TV lift so that the TV is fully extended out of the Cabinet when raised up.
The other options you have is the type of lid you want to have on the cabinet. Some people prefer the Lid to lift up with the TV so that ornaments can lift along with the TV, and others prefer the Lid to flip back such that when the TV is raised all you see is the TV and no Lid. This is a personal preference but beware, with the flip back lid its possible for drinks to get thrown off if you are not careful. We have a video to demonstrate both type of Lids in this blog post we created title "How to build a TV Lift cabinet for under $300"
3. Flip and rotate down from ceiling hidden TV
Although technically not hidden, there are technically two types of flip down TV Lifts. The TV can be facing downwards when it is flush with the ceiling, thereby not really hidden but certainly out of the way. The other option is to have the TV faced up so that the back of the TV is a panel that blends into the ceiling and sits flush so you cannot really see anything when it is fully closed.
4. Cabinet panel sliding up hidden TV
Similar to 1, the TV is fixed into a cabinet of some sort and a panel slides down to cover the TV. A linear Actuator or Track Actuator are used to create the motion of the panel by remote control. The Panel slides along a pair of long stroke extension slides to create a smooth sliding panel.
5. Drop down TV lift from ceiling hidden TV method
Similar to 2. This TV Lift uses a Pop up TV lift mechanism upside down.
6. Pop up from the Floor hidden TV method
Similar to 2. This TV Lift uses a Pop up TV lift mechanism simply installed into the floor, and more than likely a piece of the flooring is installed onto the bracket that sits on top of the TV lift mechanism and lifts up with the TV. Although some people may prefer the Lid to flip backwards, however the downside of this is that the lid would require a hinge installing in the floor which may not create the look you are after.
7. Slide out TV - sideways from a wall or cabinet hidden TV method
This Slide Out TV project is similar to project 1. however instead of a panel sliding left to right to cover the TV, the TV is what slides left to right from within a cabinet or wall. The build process is pretty much the same too where a panel is mounted to a pair of long stroke drawer slides and then actuated using a Linear Actuator or Track Actuator.