With HDMI, it’s about copy protection. But let’s first address that coax jack. The coaxial cable input on a TV’s back panel is provided to connect an antenna designed to pull in digital TV broadcasts. A tuner inside the TV then demodulates the signal, stripping audio/video from the radio frequency carrier. Next, the MPEG-compressed A/V stream is decoded so that your TV can display it.
With digital cable, the process is similar, except a different modulation method is used to convey signals over the cable TV system’s wired network to your cable box.
Once HD signals are decoded by your cable, satellite, or other-type receiver, the uncompressed video and audio gets routed to an HDMI output. Those signals are then encrypted using a DRM (Digital Rights Management) scheme called HDCP (High-bandwidth Digital Content Protection). For the source device to pass the signals, a handshake must occur with he receiving device. This process creates a secure digital connection that prevents any content from being copied.
Are you ready for the Big Game? Ready to take in all its glory as if you were in the stands sitting on the edge of your seat immersed in the action? Ready to impress family and friends with a jaw-dropping experience that leaves them, well…jealous?
And, no, we’re not talking about your awesome Kegerator or those hot, tangy, succulent wings everyone loves. We’re talking about a killer audio/video setup that not only “transports” you to the stadium but puts you on the field. A setup that let’s you feel the action – the bone-crunching thuds of a goal-to-go pileup, the brutal kidney-punch of a sideline takedown, the roar of the crowd when the announcer shouts “touchdown!”
The best of today’s home entertainment technology can get you closer to the game than ever before. And in some ways, a topnotch AV system can deliver an experience that’s better than being there. So if you’re tired of the small screen and tinny sound, it’s time to time to take things to the next level with an AV setup that will serve not only sports but also movies, music, and TV.
Here’s our three-step plan for upping your AV game.
1. TAKE A TOUR OF AV-LAND.
If it’s been a while since you’ve bought a TV or sound system, you might want to talk with one of our experts or pick up a magazine like Sound & Vision to get a feel for what’s new in AV. You’ll quickly see that a lot is going on.
If you’re serious about taking your AV game to the next level, find a home technology professional in your area and have him walk you through options in your price range. A pro will guide you through the maze of AV gear and present ideas on how to integrate it into your room – or hide it away.
2. GO FOR A BIG SCREEN.
And not just any screen but the biggest screen you can afford (as long as it’s not too big for the room you have in mind). Take a close look at the new 4K/Ultra HD sets, the best of which deliver stunning pictures at prices that are getting lower every day. OLED TVs – known for their vibrant, lifelike color – are also worth a serious look, but there are fewer options and they tend to be quite a bit more expensive.
If you have the physical space and budget to go bigger than, say, 70 inches, consider a theater-like projection setup where screen sizes start at 100 inches. There’s no better way to get in the game.
3. DON’T SKIMP ON THE SOUND.
Forget soundbars and cheap home-theater-in-a-box systems. Go for a bona fide surround-sound audio system with a full complement of speakers and a real subwoofer. For the best experience, you’ll want a 5.1 system, which means three front speakers – left, center, right – two rear surround speakers and a standalone subwoofer.
Speakers come in a wide variety of types and sizes, including models that can be mounted in (or on) the walls and ceiling for a stealth look. Professional guidance will go a long way here.
Following these few simple steps will put you on the path to an at-home game experience that you might not have imagined possible.
To learn more about home entertainment technology and options, consult a SpaceCoast AV professional today.
Home audio and video equipment are available in a wide variety, such as stereo, home theater systems, music systems, surround systems, DVD and blue ray disk players. These appliances are manufactured by various manufactures such as Sony, LG, Phillips, Samsung and creative among others.
Regardless of the manufacturer you choose, most of the features are pretty much the same and the appliances will serve you well. The choice of a home audio and video appliance depends on personal taste and preferences as well as financial status. Most of the entries level electronics are very cheap, while high end powerful home audio equipment are very expensive.
Most first time buyers choose entry level product that cost less, although such items are priced reasonably, they will serve you well and can last for a very long time. Some of the cutting edge technology in the recent past includes the release of light weight TVs, the plasma TVs, and the LED TV sets. These television sets are known to offer high quality video and a good quality sound output. Most of the entry level buyers opt for smaller screens such as 32 inches or 42 inches, while the other shoppers opt for high end TV sets that are expensive and have a huge screen.
Some of the most popular features in most of the TVs released in the recent past include:
– Internet browsing capability via Wi-Fi connection
The ability of a TV to connect to the internet via a Wi-Fi connection means that you can stream movies from the internet right into your TV and enjoy the movie on a big screen. In addition, you can connect the TV to your home theater system to boost the sound systems and enjoy a high quality sound output.
SpaceCoast AV is an all-in-one solution for your audio video, theater, telecom, automation, and home networking needs. We handle all size jobs at all levels. Whether you are building a new home, remodeling, or just want to add a new flat-panel television in the living room, our experienced staff has a solution for you. SpaceCoast AV is a full service company providing design consultation, full installation, programming, and sales of equipment at competitive prices.
We love our sports. We spend thousands of dollars a year supporting our sundry sports passions, be it through ticket sales, jerseys, or regretful bar tabs. Even gambling debts might fall under the category of “sports tax,” depending on your point of view.
But there’s no doubt that televisions are a vital purchase for any sports fan.
You may be pleasantly surprised to learn that a “good-for-sports TV” is generally synonymous with a “good-for-_everything_ TV.” From a picture quality standpoint, the requirements for displaying the best possible football game is all but identical for the best possible Star Wars marathon.
However, some TVs do possess qualities beyond simple processing power that might make them better for sports than others. Let’s take a lap around the field.
The number one consideration for buying a TV, aside from price, is screen size. If you can’t see the puck whipping across the ice, what’s the point? You might as well be listening to the radio
Contrary to popular opinion, there is such a thing as “too big.” At some point you’ll be able to see the individual pixels and the illusion of a smooth, uniform picture will vanish.
There’s an actual formula to calculate the ideal size, but you certainly don’t need to break out a scientific calculator to shop for a TV. The rough estimate is simple:
That means you can measure the distance from your couch to the TV, then divide by 2.5. There you have it, your ideal screen size. So if you sit 7 feet (84 inches) from your TV, you want a TV with a diagonal screen size of about 2.8 feet, or 34 inches. It’s a very rough calculation, but at least it’s a place to start.
Plasma Vs. LCD and LED
Ah, the old debate. We’ve covered it many times in many forms, but here’s the difference in a nutshell: Plasma TVs tend to run a little larger in screen size (50 inches and up). They have a wider viewing angle, which makes them good for hosting a party for the Superbowl or NBA finals.
LCD TVs (and LED TVs by extension), on the other hand, have a wide range of screen sizes (26 inches up to 80+ inches), but the larger screen sizes will probably be more expensive than an equivalently-sized plasma. More importantly, LCD screens can get a lot brighter than plasma, which might make them easier to see in a sunny room.
There’s a heap of misinformation and half-truths about performance differences between plasmas and LCDs, much of it based on outdated information. Suffice it to say that both offer smooth motion and great contrast ratio.
There’s no doubt that 3D TVs are becoming more common, though their actual usage rates are probably not rising commensurately. The problem is that 3D broadcasting is just not up to speed yet. A 3D signal takes up a lot more bandwidth than a regular signal, so cable providers are probably slow to support it widely.
TVs are rapidly becoming more like tablets and smart phones, with lots of apps to satisfy lots of small customer bases. The worst apps try to make the TV something it’s not—like a gaming system or web browser. The best apps play to the strength of the TV as a passive entertainment device. After all, most people just want to lie back on the couch and watch something fun or exciting.
There are lots of apps for sports fans. To date, the best come from the leagues themselves, with MLB.tv as the hands-down winner. With all the complex licensing and broadcast rights, it’s impossible to get an app that offers everything you wantwhenever you want. Most apps, for instance, black out live games in your current location. In Boston, for example, you can’t watch Red Sox games live on MLB.tv.
For scores, stats, news, and clips, there are no shortage of third-party apps including Yahoo, ESPN, Hulu, and many more.
To watch the games themselves, you should always check if your local cable provider offers a sports package. Also, Apple TV, Roku, Boxee, and other set-top boxes may have better packages than your smart TV’s app selection. NFL RedZone and NBA League Pass are currently unavailable as standalone TV apps. However, both are accessible through your computer and mobile devices. We can only hope that as smart TVs become more popular, the leagues will embrace the platform, but they’ve been slow to do so.
The specs that count for a sports TV
Brightness: Many broadcasts occur during daylight hours, so you’ll want a model that’s bright enough to produce a “in-your-face” picture in a room with high ambient light.
High refresh rate: You should also be looking at sets that can display content with fast-paced action without turning the picture into a blurry mess. Plasma models excel at making sports look crisp, while most LCD models with a 120 Hz and higher refresh rate have processing modes to help reduce motion blur.
Large screen size: Finally, you’ll want to watch on a screen that’s sufficiently large—we recommend 55 inches at minimum.
The Winner’s Circle
We’ve taken our own reviews and compiled a Best in Class for Value and Quality comparison which you can get here. Are You Ready for Some Football!
Setting aside the issue of price for a moment, the Samsung UN65HU8550 is a compelling new entry in the TV market. It’s got a comprehensive list of features in a flat form factor, and it proved to be very good performer, with the versatility to suit both bright and dark viewing environments, both film and HDTV, equally well. Some minor brightness-uniformity issues, but it will likely deliver the goods for all but the most discerning black-level purists, who are probably looking at Samsung’s F8500 plasma anyhow.
Of course, we must bring price back into consideration. On the one hand, the UN65HU8550’s $3,299 MSRP asking price falls at the low end compared with the other new 65-inch Ultra HD models in the Competition. On the other hand, the Ultra HD resolution gives this TV a premium price tag over comparable 1080p TVs. the UHD resolution makes a big enough difference at this screen size isn’t really inspiring enough to pay more just to get Ultra HD; but then again, what’s the cheaper 1080p alternative in the 2014 line? Samsung was strategic this year in the features it put in each of its high-end TV series, ensuring that there’s no exact, lower-priced 1080p equivalent to the HU8550 Series. The 1080p H7150 Series is flat but lacks local dimming, whereas the 1080p H8000 Series has local dimming but is curved. If you want the best, most home-theater-worthy performance that Samsung has to offer in a flat LED/LCD, the HU8550 Series is the choice for 2014. Last year’s 1080p F8000 Series offers better black-level performance, and right now you can get the 65-incher for $400 less than this TV. That’s close enough in price that it really comes down to what matters most to you: black level or resolution. You make the call.
While home automation solutions can be simple enough for everyone in your house to use, your system will be a complex design, linking multiple devices in your home to make it possible for them to communicate over a network. Naturally, this is the kind of work that requires a professional with the tools, training and experience to understand how to get everything working together. We call this professional a Sr. Design Engineer. Certified after rigorous training, your Design Engineer is equipped to work closely with you, from designing and installing your system to teaching everyone in the house how to use it. We can also provide ongoing support and upgrades after the system is up and running.