I've got a coworker that is in the process of building a new house. He ran 6 different quotes past me (two different installers with 3 different options each) and showed me their blue-print install plans. Needless to say, most of the options were crap. Overpriced in-ceiling/in-wall speakers for everything put into install locations that just didn't make any sound (pun intended) sense.

I had him go back with a little bit of knowledge and suggestion and both came back with better quotes. I mean these places were going for "invisible" speakers basically that cost about $400-$600 a piece but had terrible response and just weren't suited for a theater at the price that they wanted. The powered gear was OK with some low, medium, and high price points, but I told him to iron out the speakers first since they would be impacted by the construction phase for in/on-wall, floor standing, etc as well as placement, the rest can be dealt with later. I mean why lock in on a 2012 model projector when the house won't be done until April 2013 and it can be one of the last pieces added?

Anyway, these "pros" out there seem to go for price-points (good for them price-points) than actually using decent equipment.

I told him that if he had a budget (which he did) that they could run the wire/cable/electrical, and I would get the speakers, receiver/amps, blu-ray, projector, mount, etc and do the install for free! We'll see if he takes me up on it or is suckered in by the installer and builder...
M60s, VP180, VP150, QS8s, SVS 20-39PCi, HTPC, JVC RS45, Onkyo TX-NR709, Shakers