Home theater isn't just about buying the most expensive components, hooking them up altogether and getting perfect performance. There are plenty of variables that influence performance and should determine your purchasing options, and perhaps the biggest one in terms of audio is room acoustics. Check out this article titled, Why Room Acoustics Are More Important Than You Think from Christopher Klein, the director of acoustics for CinemaTech, a home theater design, furnishings and acoustics provider. He goes onto explain terms like tonal balance, imaging, and bass absorption, and how each are affected by the shape, size, surfaces and furnishings of your room (you can even now purchase noise control/soundproofing objects that look like pillows, wallpaper, artwork and other household items). This is a great beginners reference to improving home theater sound performance by taking into account your unique and particular room parameters.
We've been doing a bit of research ourselves, trying to find an affordable home theater solution that works best with our small space, and even smaller budget. We used to enjoy a full 5.1 sound system with dual subs, but now we're dealing with a small living room with limitations in size and placement, so we've had to consider more novel options, while taking into account how the room acoustics will affect our home theater experience. We'll report back once we receive shipment of the one-box surround solution in the coming weeks.