Samsung UN65HU8550 UHD TV Reviewed


Setting aside the issue of price for a moment, the Samsung UN65HU8550 is a compelling new UHD4-thumb-225xauto-12676entry 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.

If Audio is your thing, you might be interested in SpaceCoast AV’s July Specials.

Find  us on Facebook and Twitter too! Or, connect with us at 321.257.9700 and online at www.spacecoastav.com 

 

On the 3rd day of an AV Christmas


Welcome back to the 3rd day in our series of the 12 days of an AV Christmas.

On the third day of Christmas, my true love gave to me and LCD and Plasma Flat Panel TVs

ImageLCD and Plasma flat panel TVs continue to be hot, hot, hot! Prices have come down significantly this year, with many 42-inch size LCD and Plasma televisions selling well below $999. You may see some extremely attractive door busters on LCD and Plasma sets the day after Thanksgiving.

However, you also see that there are many TVs labeled as “LED TVs” – but don’t get sucked into the hype that makes you think that these are a different type of TV. So-called “LED TVs” are actually LCD TVs that use a type of backlight system powered by LED lamps.

In addition, with the maturing of LCD technology and more efficient production methods, screen size availability of LCD TV, once relegated to below 37-inches, are now quite common in sizes up to 50-inches and larger, with some manufacturers offering 70-inch sets, and Sharp offering 80 an 90-inch LED/LCD TVs. Large screen sizes in the 42-inch and up range was territory once dominated by Plasma televisions, but with the increasing availability of LCD TVs in larger screen sizes, they are dominating store shelves. However, that does not mean that you should not consider a Plasma TV. Plasma TVs generally offer better black level performance and motion response than LCD TV, and come in sizes up to 65-inches (for consumers – professional sizes go up to 150 inches).

Also, just as with Blu-ray Disc players, an increasing number of LCD and Plasma TVs are incorporating Smart TV capabilities, so if you desire this feature on your TV, check to see if the TV you are considering offers it.

Another feature to consider on a TV is 3D. Contrary to what you may have heard, 3D is not “dead”. 3D is now just one of a number of options that are available on many TVs. Also, all 3D TVs can display regular 2D TV images as well. Check out my Complete Guide to Watching 3D at Home for more details.

To complement the 3D TV feature, there are a growing number of 3D Blu-ray Disc movies available (about 230 titles as of September 2013),  some occasional 3D Cable/Satellite TV program feeds, as well as 3D content that can be streamed or downloaded from the internet, such as Vudu and 3DGO!

If you are interested in a 3D TV for the holidays either for yourself or as a gift purchase, definitely keep on the lookout for package deals that may include a TV, Blu-ray Disc player, and/or extra 3D glasses – TVs that use the passive glasses 3D viewing system, as you will see offers anywhere from two to six pairs of glasses included with the TV – and if you need more, they are very inexpensive. The TVs that require active shutter glasses may only include up to two pairs with the TV, and sometimes none are actually included. If you are shopping for a family, definitely watch for the best deal on 3D glasses. Just remember that you cannot use passive glasses with a TV that requires active glasses or vice versa. Check out the details.

For information on what you need to know before you buy an LCD or Plasma TV, whether you opt for a basic TV, Smart TV, or 3D TV, as well as some buying suggestions,you can give us a call at 321-257-9700 or send your questions to us at info@spacecoastav.com

If you need to have your flat panel wall mounted, installed or configured. Give us a call for a free quote. 321-257-9700 or send your request for quote to sales@spacecoastav.com. One of our team members will contact you.

Social Media Strategy Critical to Success of Political Campaign


It’s time again to begin thinking about and planning for the 2014 round of elections. This means TV ads, debates, public appearances, pictures of politicians holding children – all part of a typical political campaign. The savvy, modern politician also knows that their social media strategy is critical to the success of their political campaign.

For example, California representative Eric Swalwell made news by being the first-ever congressman to broadcast his vote via Vine, a social media network that has recently outgrown the epithet of “fledgling.” It was a six-second clip of him voting “nay” to the GOP’s attempts to decrease health protection for women. Needless to say, this made him quite popular not just among women, but also among youths and users of the social media technology.

It’s worth pointing out how recognizable Swalwell became simply because he posted some good content in a low-competition area. Only ten Senators currently use a social media app for their campaigns, despite the Senate having released an official statement of approval on using Twitter’s video-sharing app.

Below  are some more tips on using social media effectively in a political campaign:

SMM-PR SOLUTIONS

  • Getting there first. Dear Mr. Swalwell, thanks for the lesson learned!
  • Learn the niche of the network. On Twitter, this means being able to write a short but meaningful message that generates enough interests to get clicks. On Vine, this means capturing something memorable in six seconds. On Facebook, it could mean a bunch of different things depending on the brand and the audience. It’s all about doing what’s right for the medium and the people who use it.
  • Ask questions. People want to feel like their representatives are personable and want to hear what they say. No matter if you’re a brand, an individual, or a political campaign, your audience will be engaged by questions.
  • Stay human. No one wants to feel like their representatives are untouchable gods in the sky – it’s good to have a witty statement here, an update on the politician’s life there. These should not be the majority, however.
  • Recognize your followers. Say a certain political campaign stands behind increasing funds for education. Wouldn’t it be great to ask your followers for children’s hand-written messages and drawings – and then to share them? This kind of move is adaptable to many different platforms. The Internet is no longer a one-way information street. Recognize and learn from your followers.
  • Finally, have great content. It’s been rehashed so many times, but there’s no way around this one. Everyone looking to be successful on social media needs to have the content to back them up. Link to relevant articles and news, post meaningful pictures and videos, and don’t post anything unnecessary  (i.e. “Good night!”).

Special recognition to Author Anqi Cong for this content.

SpaceCoast AV Communications provides the Audio and Visual products, technologies and integrated solutions that bring people together; allowing people to share ideas and thoughts through media rich communications and collaboration solutions. We bring the value of  allowing people and organizations the ability to focus on what they need to do, better, faster and more efficiently.

 

SpaceCoast AV’s Projects Featured on Houzz


Video Conferencing in the Public Sector


 In past posts we’ve discussed the benefits of video teleconferencing (VTC) for federal government agencies and state and local government entities.

ImageVTC solutions can enable government organizations to cut costs on unnecessary travel and extraneous estate. They can empower telework, increase employee productivity and improve work-life balance. They can even enable government leaders to make faster, more informed decisions.

Unfortunately, despite the cost savings that many VTC solutions can enable over time, government entities at the federal, state and local level may find themselves in a financial situation that keeps them from acquiring them. However, the implementation of VTC solutions doesn’t have to be extremely expensive for government agencies. And in some cases, it may even put dollars back into government coffers.

Nextgov recently featured an article about the expansion of shared services within the federal government. Shared services are essentially IT solutions that an agency develops and then sells into other agencies. The agency absorbs the cost of the initial infrastructure purchase and implementation, but then takes in recurring fees from offering the solution as a service to offices and divisions with the agency.

The article details how shared services have benefited Customs and Border Protection (CBP). The division of the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) had its IT budget slashed by more than $600 million. However, they managed to recoup some of those costs by developing IT services that they then provided to other DHS divisions at a fee.

Shared services ultimately benefit all parties involved. The agency or office that implements them gets to use them and gains an additional source of revenue. The agencies that purchase the solutions as a service get them as a recurring operating expense that is easier on their budget instead of as a single, large capital expenditure.

The shared service model works for government organizations at all levels, including federal, state and municipal government. Federal agencies tend to be comprised of multiple offices and divisions. Often, these offices and divisions handle their own IT budgets and acquisitions. The parent agency – or in the case of the CBP, one department within the agency – can purchase a solution and sell it across the rest of the agency.

The same applies to states and local governments that can do the same with their own individual agencies and the county and city governments within their borders. In fact, in some instances where individual cities within a state have larger Information Technology budgets than the state itself, shared services offer an excellent opportunity to utilize those budgets to implement an IT solution state-wide.

With their ability to increase productivity, cut costs and increase efficiency, VTC solutions are becoming increasingly essential in today’s government. And shrinking budgets don’t have to stand in the way of implementing them. Utilizing shared service models, agencies can make their money back on their VTC implementations, while offering them as a service in a budget-friendly manner to other government entities.

For More Information Contact SpaceCoast AV Communications at 321-257-9700 or email us at info@spacecoastav.com