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Home Theater: Most Popular Articles

These articles are the most popular over the last month.
How To Fix a Wonky HDMI Connection
HDMI is now the most common type of connection used in home theater setups that include high-definition components, such as HDTVs, video projectors, Blu-ray Disc players, and home theater receivers. The intent of HDMI is to make it an easy way to connect all your components together for both audio and video. However, sometimes there are glitches when using HDMI. To find out what to do when your HDMI connection doesn't seem be working, check out my useful tips.
How Fast Should My Internet Be to Watch Netflix?
If you want to stream videos to your network media player from Netflix and Vudu, you want a high speed internet connection. Learn how fast of an internet connection you need to stream the different video qualities on Netflix and Vudu.
The Top 10 Must-Have Samsung Apps
Samsung has more than 200 apps for the Samsung Smart TVs. Here is a list of the top ten apps you should download. Games, helpful apps and exercise apps are some of the best-suited for the Samsung TV big screen.
What's the Difference Between 1080p and 1080i?
1080i vs 1080p. The highest current standard for high definition resolution is 1080p. However, what is the difference between 1080p and 1080i? Can you really see the difference on an HDTV screen? For more details on this check out my article: 1080i vs 1080p.
Wireless Speakers and Home Theater
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A Complete Guide to Smart TV and Blu-Ray Player...
We all know that iPhones and Android Phones have Apps. However, did you know that your TV or Blu-ray disc player can have apps too? Samsung Apps take TV viewing to a new level by bringing useful and fun internet content and activities to your TV and home theater viewing experience. For all the information you need to know about what Samsung Apps are and how to use them, check out the following four-article series that takes you step-by-step through the world of Samsung Apps.
How to Pick the Right Receiver for Your Home...
Which is better, a 5.1 channel or a 7.1 channel home theater receiver? - and what about those 9.1 channel receivers? Actually, all those options can work well. There are advantages and disadvantages to each, based on the source components you are using and what your personal preferences are, but there are also other factors to consider. Check out some useful tips on the differences between 5.1 and 7.1 channel receivers that can help you decide which option is best for you.
Jump on the Streaming Bandwagon with a Network...
Network Media Player and Media Streamers are making quite an impact in home theater. With the ability to access TV and movie content from the internet so you can watch on your TV, these little devices provide a very convenient way to enhance your entertainment choices. Check out my favorite current choices.
Is it Better to Stream or Download Media Files?
Streaming vs downloading - What is the difference between streaming music or a movie and downloading it? This article tells you what you need to know when streaming or downloading media to your network media player or computer.
How Samsung AllShare Makes TV More Awesome
Samsung's AllShare easily streams photos, music and movies between TVs, home theater, blu-ray disc players, Galaxy Tab and wifi cameras and camcorders and can all be controlled by a Galaxy S phone. Learn how AllShare makes networking home entertainment simple using DLNA certified products. AllShare products are the perfect example of DLNA certifications and the perfect way to understand DLNA.
How to Use Your Smart TV to its Fullest...
Samsung's Smart TVs have apps like you might find on a smart phone. Find out how to access the apps, set up an account, buy app cash, purchase, and download apps.
The Benefits of 4K Resolution for HD Devices
4K, now officially labeled as Ultra HD, refers to one of two high definition resolutions: 3840 x 2160 pixels or 4096 x 2160 pixels. 4K is four times the high definition resolution of 1080p (1920x1080 pixels) that one of the current consumer high definition resolution standards. Other terms used to refer to 4K are 4K x 2K and Quad High Definition.
The Truth About So-Called LED Televisions
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What's the Difference Between 720p and 1080p TVs?
Even though 1080p is currently the highest video resolution available for consumers, 720p is also acknowledged by both industry and government standards as high definition. However, what is the difference between 720p and 1080p? Can you really see the difference on an HDTV screen? For more details on this, check out my comparison of 720p and 1080p.
The Real Difference Between 720p and 1080i
720p and 1080i are both video resolutions used in television broadcasting. What is the difference between 720p and 1080i in relation to 1080p? Do all these numbers really mean anything in which you actually see on the screen? For the answers check out my article: The Difference Between 720p and 1080i.
What You Need to Do Before You Buy a Blu-Ray...
Check out some useful tips on what look for when buying a Blu-ray Disc Player, or even a used HD-DVD player.
The Best VHS VCR Combo DVD Recorders
DVD recorder/VCR combos - For those that are both replacing a VCR and want a DVD recorder, this flexible option gives you the best of the old and the new. You can use these units to play DVDs and VHS tapes, as well as record or copy homemade recordings (such as camcorder tapes, television recordings, etc...). However, there are some recording restrictions.
How to Bring Your Old Video Tapes into the...
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The Best Home Theater Receivers Under \$1,300
The Home Theater Receiver (AKA AV Receiver, Surround Sound Receiver) is the heart of a home theater system, providing power to the speakers, and serving as the central control center for all of your components. Check out my list of midrange home theater receiver suggestions in the $400 to $1,299 price range.
The Best Sub 24-Inch LCD and LED/LCD TVs
Looking for an LCD TV that is just the right size for a second room, office, or small apartment. Check out my suggestions in the 24-Inch and smaller category.
How to Get the Most Out of Your 3D TV
One of the frustrating things about watching 3D at home is how to adjust your 3D TV to get the best 3D viewing experience. However, with just a few tweaks to your TV's picture settings, you can enjoy a good 3D viewing experience. Check out some useful tips.
Compact Audio Systems - Best Mini and Micro...
If you are looking for something small that will provide you a good music listing experience, check out a compact mini or micro audio system. For some choices, check out my suggestions.
Home Theater Receivers and the Multi-Zone Feature
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Which Type of Subwoofer Is Right for You?
Subwoofers are an important part of a home theater system. From an inexpensive home theater-in-a-box to high-end custom installed systems, a subwoofer is needed to provide those low bass frequencies. However, how you connect a subwoofer depends on whether is Passive or Powered. For more details, read my short overview on Passive vs Powered Subwoofers.
The Best Budget Surround Sound Receiver You Can...
Moderately priced home theater receivers now provide features and quality that just a couple of years ago would have commanded sky high prices. Check out my list of budget home theater receivers priced at $399 or less.
How to Stream 3D Movies to Your TV with Vudu
Vudu 3D movie streaming is available on a number of networked TVs, network media player and media streaming devices including the Boxee Box. In this review of Vudu 3D, find out if streaming 3D movies is as good as 3D Blu-rays and learn what you need to watch Vudu 3D.
A Simple Explanation of DLNA
What is DLNA? Learn how DLNA certification makes it easy to set up your home network to share and stream photos, music and movies.
Shopping for a Flat Screen? 16 LED/LCD TVs to...
Are you looking for a new TV? If so, your main choices are between LCD and Plasma. Both are viable, but the most popular type of TV is LCD. For a list of some of my current choices for best LCD and LED/LCD TVs the 40-Inch and larger screen size, check out the following selections.
The Best High End Home Theater Receivers
If you are looking for a home theater receiver that provides top-notch audio and video performance, as well as providing the latest in connectivity and custom control, the check out my list of high end home theater receiver favorites in the $1300 and up price range.
The Best CD Players for Your Entertainment System
Looking for a new CD player? Check out my top picks in moderately priced, but high performance units from a variety of manufacturers.
The Top DVD Recorders for Your Entertainment...
DVD recorders are touted as the replacement for the VCR. However, they are not as plentiful as they once were. Check out the best of the current field of DVD recorders.
Backyard Home Theater
High gasoline prices, expensive air-fares, and high theme park ticket prices, make summer travel more difficult these days, especially for families. If you are facing discontent at home because you can't afford to take your family on Summer vacation, why not add a little adventure and excitement in your own backyard on those warm Summer nights with an outdoor home theater?
How to End Annoying Buffering on Streaming Videos
When you start streaming videos from online or from your video libraries to your network media player or media streamer, you may experience a loading screen while the movie download buffers. Learn why movie streaming is interrupted and how fast internet and home connections can eliminate the wait.
What You Really Need Know About Amplifiers
How Much Amplifier Power Do You Really Need? We often base our judgments about amplifier quality on power output, but there is more to an amplifier besides power. This article discusses the additional factors, besides wattage, that contribute to an audio amplifier's performance.
What Is Audio Return Channel?
Definition of the term: Audio Return Channel (ARC)
23 Things to Know Before Buying an LCD or...
LCD and Plasma TVs are now the most common types in use, but how do they shape up when they are compared? Find out the differences between an LCD TV and Plasma TV.
Top 10 Home Theater Mistakes and How to Avoid...
Setting up a home theater system is not that difficult - at least most of the time. If you have set up your home theater system, and something just doesn't seem right, check out my list of home theater mistakes that are commonly made to see if they are applicable to your situation.
What to Do Before You Buy a Home Theater Receiver
The Home Theater Receiver is the central component in a home theater system. As centralized device, home theater receivers are called upon to fill several rolls. In part one of this two article series, I discuss the basic audio performance and functions to look for. In Part Two, I dig deeper into some of the more advanced functions to consider when buying a Home Theater Receiver.
Top 6 TV Picks for Small Spaces
LCD TVs are now very popular and come in wide variety of screens sizes. For a list of some of my LCD television favorites in the 26 through 29-inch screen sizes, check out the following selections.
Blu-ray Disc Player Audio Settings - Bitstream...
Blu-ray Disc is the video source for TV viewing, as well as the best audio source for surround sound listening. However, with audio, you have several audio output setting options. The two most important are the Bitstream and PCM settings. Find out these settings do.
The Best Midsize LCD and LED TVs
If a 40-inch or larger LCD TV is too large for you, check out my suggestions for LCD and LED/LCD TVs with 32 to 39-inch screen sizes. NOTE: This list is updated periodically.
Audio Video Synchronization in Home Theater
Audio Video Synchronization (AV Synch) is a problem that has cropped up in more home theater setups. Sometimes you may notice that the audio is slightly ahead of the video image when watching a high definition cable/satellite program or upscaled DVD/Blu-ray Disc video on an HDTV. This is especially noticeable on close-ups of people speaking. It is as if you are watching a dubbed foreign movie. For some useful tips on how correct this, check out my article: Correcting Audio Video Synch Problems.
HDMI Switchers
With the growing number of HDMI (High Definition Multimedia Interface) equipped components, one or two HDMI inputs on an HDTV and/or Home Theater receiver is no longer enough. You might need an HDMI switcher. Check out my suggestions.
Best Home Theater-In-A-Box Systems
You want to get into all the Home Theater fun, but don't have the space or the money? A home theater-in-a-box or all-in-one home theater system may be just the right solution. Also makes a great gift for any occasion.
DVD Video Upscaling - Important Facts
Video Upscaling - With the advent of HDTV, DVD players, home theater receivers, and other source devices are now available that feature video upscaling to be match the display resolution capabilities of an HDTV. However, the introduction of Blu-ray and HD-DVD has confused the issue between upscaling and the true HD capability of Blu-ray and HD-DVD. Read more...
Video Frame Rate vs Screen Refresh Rate
Video Frame Rate vs Screen Refresh Rate. With terms like HDTV, Progressive Scan, 1080p, Frame Rate, and Screen Refresh Rate, it is no wonder that when shopping for a TV that many consumers are confused. Two of the most difficult terms to understand, if you are not a techie, are Frame Rate and Refresh Rate. Check out explanation of what Frame Rate and Refresh Rate are, and why they are important to know when shopping for a TV.
Where did all the DVD Recorders go?
If you have been shopping for a DVD recorder recently (actually, anytime since 2010) you have probably noticed a lack of selection on store shelves. Unfortunately, it is not the retailers fault for not stocking them. While DVD recorders are thriving in other parts of the World and Blu-ray Disc recorders are widely available in Japan and appearing in several other markets, the U.S. is being left out; and it is being left out on purpose. For more details, read my article: The Case of the Disappearing DVD Recorder.
How Do I Hook Up My Home Theater?
How Do I Hook Up My Home Theater? - A lot of want the excitement of home theater, but it is hassle sometimes to connecting all up and get it running. However, although it does take a little time, the task does not have to complicated. Check out some practical tips that can help you set up your home theater more efficiently.
Buying A TV - What You Need To Know
Buying a TV is easy, just check out the newspaper or online ads, drive down to the dealer and pick up the best deal. However, how come you aren't happy with it when you get it home and set it up? There is definitely more to buying a TV than getting than getting the lowest price. Check out some useful tips.
Six Ways to Incorporate the Internet into Your...
The internet is playing an ever important role in home theater. Check out several ways to make the internet a part of your home theater system, so that you can stream audio and video, and even access media content stored on your PC.
What Is DLNA and Samsung Allshare?
DLNA and Samsung AllShare are comprehensive protocols that make it easy to set up your home network to share and stream photos, music and movies. Although AllShare is exclusive to Samsung, it is based on, and compatible with DLNA. For more details, check out my Guide to DLNA and Samsung AllShare.
Should I Get a Video Projector or a Television...
You can't have a home theater without something to watch your movies and TV programs on. One option is to get an LCD or Plasma TV and the other is option is to get a video projector - but which is best?
What Are Samsung Apps?
Samsung Apps have changed network TVS. Samsung's Smart TVs are not only network TVs that connect to a couple of services but there are specially designed games, informational apps and more. Find out how Smart TVs are adding apps and following the example of smart phones.
Digital Optical Audio Connector AKA TOSLINK
A Digital Optical Audio Connector, AKA TOSLINK, is an important audio connection in home theater. Check out a photo as well as a short overview of what it is and what it does. Page 7.
DVD Region Codes - What You Need To Know
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Best Blu-ray Discs For Home Theater Viewing
I use a lot of movies to test the audio and video performance of Blu-ray disc players, TVs, video projectors, and receivers. Check out a list of some of my current favorites that I use for testing, and pop in one of these titles the next time you'd like to show off your home theater system's capabilities.
LCD TV - DVD Player Combinations
Although the TV combo concept has been with us for some time, the concept has evolved into an LCD form factor that include built-in DVD players. Such units are great for locations the office, dorm room, recreation room, kitchen, or bedroom. Check out my current favorites.
Five Reasons Why Apple TV is the Best Media...
Although Apple TVs only work with iTunes, here are the top five reasons why an Apple TV may be the best network media player if you are a Mac user, own an iPhone, an iPad, or an iPod Touch.
Shared Composite/Component Video Input...
Since the introduction of HDTV and HDMI, the landscape for connecting source devices to TVs has changed in recent years - the latest change is the appearance of the shared Composite/Component video input connection. For all the details on what this means for consumers purchasing new TVs, read my report.
Before You Buy a Video Projector
Video projectors been around a long time, serving well as a presentation tool in business and commercial entertainment, as well as in some very high-end home theater systems. However, with advancements in technology, video projectors are increasingly accessible and affordable for average consumers. Check out some useful tips before you buy your first video projector.
Video Copy Protection and DVD Recording
It is well-known that it is very difficult to copy commercially made VHS video tapes to another VCR due to Macrovision anti-copy encoding. However, the same applies when trying to copy a commercially made VHS tape to DVD, or a commercially made DVD to another DVD. DVD recorders cannot bypass the anti-copy signal on commercial VHS tapes or DVDs. To find out more on this, check out my Quick Tip: Video Copy Protection and DVD Recording.
Why NTSC and PAL Still Matter With HDTV
How Analog and Digital TV are related. With the introduction of Digital TV and HDTV, you would tink that we now have universal video standard. However, this is not incorrect. Although video is going digital, the main difference between video standards that exist currently, Frame Rate, is still the foundation of the new Digital TV and HDTV standards. For more details, check out my article: Why NTSC and PAL Still Matter With HDTV.
What is Wireless Home Theater?
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Before You Buy a Home Theater Receiver Pt2 -...
The Home Theater Receiver is the central component in a home theater system. As centralized device, home theater receivers are called upon to fill several rolls. In part one of this two article series, I discussed the basic audio performance and functions to look for. In Part Two, I dig deep into some of the more advanced functions to consider when buying a Home Theater Receiver.
The 4K Ultra HD TV List
4K Ultra HD TVs have arrived on the market, but what brands and models are available and what do they offer? To get started, I have started a listing. All the TVs on list feature 4K Ultra HD display resolution, with most of them offering additional features, such as 3D and internet streaming. However, they are all expensive.
How To Set-up a Basic Home Theater System Using...
If you are assembling a home theater system using a collection of independent home theater-related components, the task may seem complicated, but actually follows the same general outline as a prepackaged system. In a basic setup that includes an television, AV receiver, a DVD player, and a VCR (or DVD recorder), here is an example of one approach, which is illustrated in general terms...
How Does Standard DVD Upscaling Compare to...
HD-DVD and Blu-ray are both high definition formats, but you have a DVD player that can upscale DVDs to high definition resolution. How Does Standard DVD Upscaling Compare to Blu-ray and HD-DVD?
Is it Better to Buy a LCD TV or a Plasma TV?
LCD and Plasma TVs are both viable purchase options, but which is best for you? Find out in my article: Should I Buy an LCD TV or a Plasma TV?
All About 1080p TVs
1080p is currently the highest resolution available for TVs and video projectors. 1080p represents 1,080
Best CD Recorders and CD Recording Systems
CD recorders allow you to either make a complete copy of a CD or mix-and-match music from a variety of sources, including favorite CD's, Audio Cassettes, or even Vinyl Records. However, with the increasig popularity of CD-burning using PCs, the number of standalone CD recorders have declined over time, but they are still available if you know where to look. Check out my current suggestions.
3D Glasses Overview - Passive Polarized Glasses...
There are three parts to the 3D experience: the source, the display device, and the glasses. For details on how 3D glasses work and the difference between active and passive glasses, read my article: 3D Glasses - Passive Polarized and Active Shutter 3D Glasses Overview.
The Sound Bar Option
The Sound Bar option - You just purchased that fabulous big-screen flat panel TV, and now that you have it all set up it really does look great, but it sounds terrible. Let's face it, a TV's built-in speaker system usually sounds anemic at best and downright unintelligible at worst. Of course you can add a home theater system, but hooking-up and placing all those speakers just creates more unwanted clutter. The solution for you may just be a Sound Bar.
Where Is The 8mm/VHS Adapter?
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Before You Buy A Video Projection Screen
The home theater video projection screen is just as important as the home theater video projector itself. Projection Screens come in various styles, fabrics, sizes, and prices. The type of projection screen that will work best depends on the projector, the viewing angle, the amount of ambient light in the room, and the distance of the projector from the screen. For more details, check out my article: Before You Buy A Video Projection Screen.
Quick Tip - Three Ways To Copy VHS Tapes to DVD
One question I get asked often is: "How Do You Copy VHS to DVD?". The answer - There are three ways a
Are You Ready for the Quantum Dot Effect?
Sorting through all those TV tech terms isn't easy: LCD, LED, Plasma, 1080p, OLED, etc... Now, there is a new term making the rounds with regards to TV technology: Quantum Dots. Find out what Quantum Dots are and how they can make your TV viewing experience better, while retaining affordability.
PCM
PCM stands for Pulse Code Modulation. PCM technology is a means by which standard audio signals (which are represented by waveforms) are converted to digital audio signals (which are represented by 1's and 0's - much like computer data) with little, or no, compression. Read more...
Can I Play a Blu-ray Disc on a DVD Player?
Blu-ray Disc players can play Blu-ray discs, DVDs, CDs, and, in some cases, even SACDs and DVD-Audio Discs, but if I only have one Blu-ray Disc player in my house and several DVD players, can I play a Blu-ray Disc on a DVD player so that I can share the movie with the rest of the family at their convenience? For the answer, read my article: Can I Play a Blu-ray Disc on a DVD Player?
Amazon Adds Free Streaming to Amazon on Demand...
Amazon Instant Video - Amazon has added free streaming of movie and TV shows to Amazon Prime members. Learn more about Amazon Instant Video streaming, Amazon Prime memberships and how to use it on a Roku Box or Google TV.
Troubleshooting Your Home Theater System
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Correcting Low Center Channel Dialog
In a home theater it is important obtain the best balance of speaker levels to obtain the best listening experience. One sound balance problem, that is quite common, is low center channel volume relative to the left and right main channels. This can make the dialog track almost unintelligible, especially it is being overwhelmed by sounds coming from the other parts of the soundtrack. For a solution, check out my quick tip.
iOS and Android Remote Home Theater Control Apps
Did you know that you can use your Android or iPhone, and even your table device as remote control for your home theater components? Check out a sampling of great apps that you install on your iOS or Android device that may enable to to get put all your remote controls in storage.
Can DVD Players Also Play Standard Music CDs?
DVD players can play DVDs, but what else can they play? Find out in my article: Can DVD Players Also Play Standard Music CDs?
Subwoofers - What You Need To Know
Subwoofers have emerged as a critical element of a home theater system. What is a subwoofer and why is it necessary for a full home theater experience? Find out in this informative article.
What the .1 Means in 5.1, 6.1, or 7.1 Channel...
Are you confused by what the .1 means in 5.1, 6.1, or 7.1 Channel Surround Sound? If so, my article will explain what the .1 means and why it is important in home theater. Also discussed is why a .2 designation is sometimes also used in surround sound.
Best 3D Blu-ray Disc Movies
Blu-ray is an integral part of the home entertainment experience, and 3D movies on Blu-ray providing an additional viewing option for consumers. I use 3D Blu-ray Discs to test the 3D video performance of Blu-ray Disc Players, TV, video projectors, and receivers. However, not all 3D Blu-ray discs offer the best 3D experience. Check out a list of my current favorites for best 3D Blu-ray discs.
What Do I Need In My Home Theater To Watch 3D?
You want to make the jump to 3D and all you need is a 3D TV - Right? Wrong! To fully access the 3D viewing experience you need more than just a 3D TV - Find out the details in my article: What Do I Need In My Home Theater To Watch 3D?
How to Connect Two or More Subwoofers in a Home...
Are you finding that your subwoofer isn't providing the experience you were expecting? It is definitely possible that a different subwoofer is in order. However, it may also be that your room requires the use of more than one subwoofer for an optimal low frequency listening experience. Check out some tips on how you can connect two, or more, subwoofers to your home theater setup.
Why are Black Bars Sometimes Still Visible on a...
The impact of Digital TV is making TV buying decisions for consumers more complex. One common question that is asked is: Why are Black Bars Sometimes Still Visible on a 16x9 HDTV? Find out the answer to this question in the following FAQ entry.
Western Digital WD TV Live Streaming Media...
The WD TV Live is the latest in a line of network media players from Western Digital. the WD TV Live incorporates WiFi connectivity, 1080p resolution outputs, and access to a number of popular internet streaming services, including HuluPlus, Netflix, Spotify, Blockbuster On Demand, CinemaNow, Pandora, and more... To find out if the WD TV Live would make a good addition to your home entertainment setup, read my review.
What is a Powerline Adapter?
A powerline adapter can use your household electrical wiring to connect your network media player to a router in another room of your house. What is a powerline adapter? Read about how a powerline adapter can bring the internet and your home network to anywhere in your home, and what you need to consider when choosing a powerline adapter.
HDMI Facts
HDMI stands for High Definition Multimedia Interface. However, what does HDMI really do and how does it relate to Home Theater? HDMI is an evolving connection standard for home theater applications there are several versions, based on when each version was released. To find out more about HDMI and its several versions check out my article: HDMI Facts.
What Is a Network Media Player?
What is a network media player or media streamer? How network media players or media streamer devices make it possible to view and listen to your computer's libraries of photos, TV shows and movies on your TV, and listen to music on your home theater speakers.
Types of Samsung TV Apps
There are over 200 Samsung Apps for Samsung Smart TVs. Find out more about the available apps and get the scoop about which apps are good and which apps you might not want.
MHL - What It Is and How It Impacts Home Theater
MHL is a new connection interface that combines with HDMI to integrate many portable devices with the home theater environment. Check out the details.
What is Apple TV?
Many people imagine a television when they hear about Apple TV. Apple TV is not a television. Find out what Apple TV really is and how it can complement your TV viewing experience.
Buying A Television - What You Need To Know -...
Buying a TV isn't as easy as it used to be. There are lots of choices in price, type, and screen size. However, not matter what type of TV you plan to buy, what screen you desire, and what price you expect to pay, there important things you need to know going in. On page one this article on buying a television, I discussed several important things to do be you leave your house to make your purchase. On page 2, I discuss Picture Quality, Audio Quality, Connectivity.
What Apple AirPlay is and What You Need to Use It
Apple AirPlay Basics - AirPlay lets you stream movies, music and photos from your iPhone, iPad, iPod or iTunes to your Apple TV. Learn what you need to make AirPlay work.
Configuring Blu-ray Disc Player Video and Audio...
Configuring Blu-ray Disc Player Video and Audio Outputs With Your Home Theater. What Happens When You Turn Your Blu-ray Disc Player on for the First Time.
Do Video Signals Need To Be Routed Through a...
One common question about home theater is whether it is necessary to route both your audio and video signals through a home theater receiver. The answer to this question really depends on the capabilities of your home theater receiver, TV, and other source components. For more specifics, ready my article: Do Video Signals Need To Be Routed Through a Home Theater Receiver?
Connecting Both a DVD Recorder and a VCR to a...
When using a DVD recorder, many consumers are face the dilemma as to how to add it to their current VCR and Television setup simply. In the following article I explain some options that will make this task easier.
Buying Refurbished Products - What You Need To...
Buying Refurbished Products - We are always looking for bargains. It is hard to resist those after-holiday and Spring clearance sales. However, another way to save money is to buy refurbished products. This article discusses the nature of refurbished products and some helpful hints on what to ask and look for when purchasing such products.
Video Projector Tip: Lens Shift vs Keystone...
With increasing lower prices and increased performance, video projectors are definitely becoming a more popular option for viewing large screen entertainment at home. However, getting the image to show up in a perfect rectangle on the screen isn't always that easy. Two features that can help are Lens Shift and Keystone Correction.
HDTV FAQs: What do I Need to Get to be Able to...
The impact of Digital TV is making TV buying decisions for consumers more complex. However, what do I need to get to be able to watch HDTV? Find out the answer to this question in the following FAQ entry.
Top Sound Bars - Digital Sound Projectors - LCR...
For those that don't want excessive wire clutter or don't have space for lots of speakers, a Sound Bar, Digital Sound Projector, or LCR Speaker System may be a simpler alternative to get better sound for TV viewing. Check out my favorite choices for these options in these product categories.
Complete Guide to Watching 3D at Home
3D is the hot topic in home theater, and depending on who you talk to, 3D TV and 3D home theater is going to be either the greatest thing to happen in home entertainment or the biggest consumer electronics flop ever. Obviously, the truth is somewhere in-between. For a comprehensive look at 3D for consumers, check out my complete guide to 3D TV and home theater.
Home Theater System Planning - 10 Essential...
A home theater system is a great way to access great audio and video content. exciting. Your home theater system can be basic, which just a TV and home theater-in-a-box system that includes either a DVD or Blu-ray Disc player, or an expensive custom-built system with video projector and in-wall speakers. However, there is a lot to consider in-between. For more details, check out part two of my 10 essential elements of a home theater system.
Vizio S4251w-B4 5.1 Channel Sound Bar Home...
The Vizio S4251w-B4 is a very interesting entry into the ever-growing and crowded sound bar market as it combines the setup convenience of a sound bar with the features and performance you would might find with a multi-speaker home theater-in-a-box system. For my perspective on this product, read my review.
HDMI Connector and Cable
A photo example and explanation of an HDMI (High Definition Multimedia Interface) Connector and cable. Page 4.
Video Projectors - What You Need To Know - The...
On the previous pages, I discussed several types of video projectors and video projection technologies, including CRT, LCD, and DLP. On this page I conclude with the bottom line information what you need to look for in a video projector, regardless of what type of technology is used. Page 5.
Can I play my recorded DVDs in other DVD...
DVD recorders are not as simple as VCRs. When you record a VHS tape, you can usually play it on any other VCR, as long as it was recorded in the same video system (NTSC or PAL). However, when recording a DVD, playback on another DVD player is not assured, unless it has be recorded in a compatible format. Find out the details on what you need to know to be able to play your recorded DVDs on other DVD players.
HDTV FAQs: What is the Difference Between...
The impact of Digital TV is making TV buying decisions for consumers more complex. However, what is the difference between digital TV (DTV) and HDTV? Find out the answer to this question in the following FAQ entry.
HDTV FAQs - What is the Difference Between...
The impact of Digital TV is making TV buying decisions for consumers more complex. However, what is the difference between digital (DTV) and regular (Analog) TV? Find out the answer to this question in the following FAQ entry.
Powered Subwoofers
The subwoofer has emerged as a critical component of the home theater system. Today's DVDs and Blu-ray
All About Crackle TV
Crackle is a free service that lets you stream full-length uncut movies and TV shows from online. The catch is that the movies and TV shows are interrupted by commercials. Find out if Crackle's free movies and TV make you want to quit your Netflix and Hulu Plus subscriptions.
What is Sonos?
If you want whole home audio to listen to streaming music throughout your house, Sonos may be the perfect solution. What is Sonos? Learn about ZonePlayers, ZoneBridges, and how Sonos works.
Samsung HT-E6730W 3D Blu-ray Home Theater...
The Samsung HT-E6730W combines a Blu-ray Disc player with a vacuum tube-equipped 7.1 channel home theater receiver section, and wireless surround speakers that connect to wireless receiver/amplifier module. The Blu-ray Disc player section provides both 2D and 3D viewing options, including 2D-to-3D conversion. Internet streaming capability also provides access to a host of online content. For more details, read my review.
The Best Blu-ray Players
Blu-ray players (or Blu-ray Disc players) make a great addition to your home theater or home entertainment set-up. With starting prices well below $199, it is a great time to purchase one. Check out some possible choices that may just right for you. These suggestions are updated on a regular basis as new models become available.
Are Curved TVs a Gimmick?
Curved Screen TVs were being pushed as the one of the next big things at the 2014 CES, but do they really live up to the hype? Before you jump off your couch and buy one, check out what you need to know.
YouTube Movie Rental Service - Review
YouTube movie rentals has added 3,000 new movie titles, including new releases. In my review of YouTube video streaming servic, learn how to use YouTube video on demand rentals, how to get a refund for bad streaming videos, and how YouTube stacks up to Netflix, Amazon On Demand, and Vudu.
DVD Recording Times and Disc Writing Speed -...
There is a difference between DVD recording times and disc writing speed. When you buy a blank recordable DVD, on the label it not only refers to the disc size and record mode time, but also refers to Writing Speed. The disc label may indicate a 2x, 4x, 8x, or higher Writing Speed capability. What does this mean to the average consumer? For the answers, check out my Quick Tip: DVD Recording Times and Disc Writing Speed - Important Facts.
DVD Record Modes - Recording Times For DVDs
A very common question I receive from owners of DVD recorders and persons considering a DVD recorder
Best Plasma TVs
Best Plasma TVs - Plasma television is now a very affordable alternative to those bulky tube and projection sets as prices are coming down and a variety of screen sizes are available. Check out some of my favorite Plasma TVs and monitors.
Apple AirPlay Streams Video from iPhone/iPad...
Apple Airplay and Third Party Apps - iPhones, iPads and iPods with the iOS 4.3 update or above can use AirPlay to stream videos from many types of apps including fitness apps, videos in interactive magazines, even video files stored outside of iTunes. Learn about the apps you didn't know could stream to the Apple TV using AirPlay, and how well all of the third-party apps perform.
What You Need to Play Media on a Network Media...
Network Media Players - Before you access your photos and videos, or listen to music on a network media player, be sure you have everything you need.
Sony STR-DN1040 7.2 Channel Network Home...
The Sony STR-DN1040 3D/Network Home Theater Receiver provides all the audio and video basics you need, including up to a 7.2 channel configuration, audio return channel, and both 1080p and 4K video upscaling. However, it doesn't stop there, there is also internet radio, apple airplay, and bluetooth. For more details, read my review.
WD TV Live Hub by Western Digital - Product...
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What is Vudu?
What is Vudu? Learn about how to get Blu-ray quality streaming movies from the Vudu box and Vudu app for your network media players, media streaming devices, networked TVs and home theater components.
Panasonic TC-L42E60 42-inch Smart Viera LED/LCD...
The Panasonic TC-L42E60 is a slim and stylish 42-inch LED/LCD TV that incorporates a host of features, including (1080p) native pixel resolution, 120hz refresh rate, internet and network streaming, 3 HDMI inputs, two side mounted USB ports for additional media file playback, and some additional features that you might not expet. For more details, read my review.
Use Your PC as Part of a Home Theater System
More people are using their PC as part of a home theater system. Here is a basic overview of using a PC as part of a home theater system.
Surround Sound Home Theater Speaker Systems
Choosing loudspeakers for a home theater system is not easy. There are several things to take into consideration: brand, price, and style. However, the overriding factor is how they sound in your listening environment. To make it harder there a hundreds of brands, models, and configurations to choose from. To narrow it down, check out my suggestions for home theater speaker packages.
Yamaha RX-V775WA Network Home Theater Receiver...
The Yamaha RX-V775WA Network Home Theater Receiver provides all the audio and video basics you need, including up to a 7.2 channel configuration, audio return channel, 3D pass-through and both 1080p and 4K video upscaling. However, there is a lot more, including Internet Radio and Apple Airplay. For more details, read my review.
Backyard Home Theater - Enjoy The Outdoor Home...
Outdoor Home Theater can an exciting and fun alternative to facing high gasoline prices, expensive air-fares, and high theme park ticket prices. On page of Backyard Home Theater, I discussed the video components you need, in page 2, I dicuss what you need so you can hear your movies. Check out: The Audio Setup For Your Outdoor Home Theater.
The RF Modulator - DVD Player Connection Option
The RF Modulator solution. DVD is so common that many consumers are either putting units in kids rooms and offices or otherwise connecting them to older or second TVs that do not have the proper audio/video inputs. However, there is a solution to this dilemma - the RF Modulator. The following article shows how you can use an RF modulator to connect your old TV with your new DVD player.
Five Ways To Get Audio From a Blu-ray Disc Player
In this setup, the Blu-ray Disc player decodes all the surround sound formats internally and sends the decoded signal to a home theater receiver. Page 3.
IOGEAR Wireless USB Audio/Video Kit - GUWAVKIT...
The IOGEAR Wireless USB Audio/Video Kit allows the wireless connection of a Desktop or Laptop PC to an HDTV, HD Monitor, or video projector, and home theater theater audio system. The software provided enables a USB port to output both the PC's video monitor and audio output signals. For a closer look at this device, check out my product review.
How Much Do I Really Need to Spend on a Home...
You figured out what you want to with regards to buying your home theater components and setting everything up - how much do I need to spend to all this? Check out some tips in my article: How Much Do I Really Need to Spend on a Home Theater?
Digital Coaxial Audio Connector
A photo example of a Digital Coaxial Audio Connector that used in a home theater connection setup. Page 6.
Before You Buy A Subwoofer
Subwoofers have emerged as a critical element of a home theater system. Find out what you need to know before you purchase one for your home theater system.
Analog Stereo Audio Cables
A close-up photo look and explanation of RCA Analog Stereo connections and cables. Page 8.
Widescreen TV - The 16x9 Factor
Widescreen televisions are getting more popular, especially for use in home theater systems; but what is the difference between a Big Screen and a Widescreen Television? What is 16x9 vs 4x3? To find out the answers to these questions and more, and how widescreen television will affect your future television purchases, check out my article.
How to Give the Gift of a Netflix Subscription
Netflix is a great gift idea. Most network media players, smartphones, networked TVs and Blu-ray Disc players, iPhones, iPads, iPod Touch, PS3, Wii, Xbox 360, can stream Netflix. Learn how to give the gift of a Netflix subscription so those on your gift list can enjoy the thousands of movies and TV shows that Netflix offers.
What you can do with all that old home theater...
There is more concern about increased number of electronics, such as old analog televisions, DVD players, PCs, and other gear that is being disposed. Find out how you can recycle your old home theater components - some of which you may not have thought of.
Headphone Surround Sound
Headphone Surround Sound can be a great complement to your home theater experience. Here is a brief overview of headphone surround sound.
Vacuum Tube Rebels
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How Pandora Creates Stations And How to...
Using Pandora - Part One - Learn how the Pandora music streaming app works and how to customize Pandora stations.
How to Connect a 3D Blu-ray Disc Player to a...
How to use a non-3D compliant Home Theater Receiver with a 3D TV and 3D Blu-ray Disc Player
Surround Sound - The Audio Side of Home Theater
Today's surround sound experience is the result of decades of evolution. Discover the beginnings of surround sound, how it moved from cinema to the home, what formats are in use today, and where it is going in the future.
Walmart Brings Vudu Video On Demand Streaming...
Walmart.com now offers online movie and TV show streaming using their Vudu video on demand service. Learn more about how to rent movies to watch on the Walmart website or on any Vudu-enabled network media player, network TV or component.
How much time can I record on a DVD?
On VCRs, depending on the record speed setting and the physical length of the tape, determines how much time you can record onto the tape. However, since DVDs only come in one physical size, the amount of time you can record on a DVD is determined differently than on a tape. For all the details, read my article: How much time can I record on a DVD?

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