4K TVs are the best you can get when it comes to picture quality these days, offering four times the resolution of high-definition at 3,840 x 2,160 pixels versus 1,920 x 1,080. But with all of the hype surrounding them, one question that’s not as often discussed is how lower resolution content will look on these 4K/Ultra HD/UHD TVs. And it’s an important thing to consider since that’s what most of us are still watching.
TV technology just keeps getting better every year, to the point it is hard to keep track and understand it all. One of the least talked about but greatest technological improvements for LCD screens is “in-plane switching” (IPS). IPS has advanced quite a bit in recent years and is definitely worth paying attention to because it is now behind the best LCD screens. The various screen technologies can be a bit confusing so let me try to explain what you need to know about IPS vs. others.
on 03-04-201408:09 PM - last edited on 03-06-201405:06 PM by BBYMartin
Roku has just made media streaming to your TV even easier,by introducing their brand new Roku Streaming Stick today!
Roku has been one of the biggest and best names in media streaming devices, and continue to show that they want to stay a leader in that market. The NEW Roku Streaming Stick puts nearly all the capabilities of a regular Roku box into a stick that looks much like a USB flash drive. With this latest announcement they have brought down the price of streaming and made it even simpler as it just plugs into an HDMI input in the back of your TV.
on 02-27-201409:26 PM - last edited on 02-28-201411:57 AM by BBYMartin
Western Digital (WD) has been around since 1970 and is one of the world’s largest hard disk drive manufacturers. I have two Western Digital external hard drives for backing up my computer and they have been great! But WD makes other devices including media streaming devices, which they have had a lot of success with. I recently had the opportunity to test out the WD TV Live Media Player, which is their third generation device so they have continually improved it. Since I already have an Apple TV and a Roku device, I was able to compare the WD TV Live to its’ competitors, and it did extremely well.
If you’re a bit of a technophile or are in the market for a new television, you may have heard of something called OLED; but what is it? How does it differ from LED technology? What makes it special? In an effort to demystify OLED, I’ve put together what I call OLED 101 – the bare bones facts about this technology that is very likely here to stay.
When it comes to getting a brand spanking new TV for the home, size is always one of top decision-making factors. Naturally, we all want the biggest, best TV money can buy. But you also need to be cognizant of what size will make the most sense for the room. And sometimes, that might mean scaling down your ambitions a bit; or conversely, looking at a TV bigger than what you intended.
on 02-25-201409:41 PM - last edited on 02-26-201401:23 PM by BBYMartin
When was the last time you cleaned your TV screen? How did you do it? For something that you probably spend so much time looking at, you really should clean it every now and then – every HDTV needs it at some point. The screen is electrostatic so it will attract dust and dirt, plus the occasional beer or other spray won’t help you see a clear picture. Cleaning it seems like a simple thing to do, but you really need to be careful as you could ruin the screen.
Surround sound systems can be very confusing, with all the different channel configurations and associated technologies. If you are in the market for a surround sound system you need to break through some of the clutter here is a basic primer on surround that I hope will help.
Surround sound is one of the best ways to improve the entertainment value of your big screen TV.
on 02-20-201410:12 PM - last edited on 02-21-201409:44 AM by BBYMartin
Every year we spend more time on the Internet and less time watching TV and this trend isn’t slowing down. The younger demographic typically spends even more time on the Internet than watching TV. There are a lot of contributing factors including the plethora of Internet devices, the ubiquitous nature of the Internet, and the amazing growth of excellent content. When at home why not view some of that content on your best viewing device – your big flat screen TV? Especially when watching videos or films, why huddle around your computer, tablet, or Smartphone? There are many simple ways to stream that content to your TV. Here is a Reader’s Digest description of a few of them.
When it comes to age, 40 is the new 20. And when it comes to TVs, 80 has become the new 60. The 80-inch TV is what many consumers lust for, salivating over the thought of being able to catch everything from live sports action (like the Sochi Olympics, World Cup, or regular season hockey games), to the latest Hollywood flick, evening news, or a favourite high-action television show, in all their visual glory.
on 02-12-201405:23 PM - last edited on 02-13-201405:12 PM by BBYMartin
Flat panel TV’s keep getting more incredible. Clearer pictures with Ultra HD 4K, and bigger screens that keep getting thinner and thinner. While the picture keeps getting better, the sound isn’t improving much because it is next to impossible to put decent speakers in a very thin panel. This is why sound bars have become extremely popular. They are very easy to set up, they look good, are non-obtrusive, and very cost effective. But are they really worth the investment? Like so many things - it depends!
New Televisions were a big part of last month’s Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in Vegas, and the big brands were all strutting their stuff trying to take a lead position by showing off their latest and greatest technologies. Some of it was a bit of fluff, but fortunately there was a lot of great stuff too. I am going to give you my take on the “best-in-show.”
For most of you that have an Apple TV, I am betting you simply set it up and have been enjoying it ever since – and you haven’t touched it since (except to watch stuff) to customize it for your particular needs. One of the nice things about Apple TV is it is easy to set up and use, so most people just plug it in and away they go. Well I am going to let you know of some simple things that you should do to improve the experience you have with Apple TV. Easy!
In the mid-1980’s, one of the most popular cartoons on TV was the Jetsons – a space age family with a robot for a maid and the coolest gadgets known to man at their disposal. To the Jetsons, everything was available at the click of a button … which, when you think about it, isn’t all that different than today. Apps are everywhere. At the touch of a button or swipe of a screen we have the world at our disposal. So much so, that more often than not, we’re not content with the concept of “out of the box.” Nope, we want to find the latest and greatest app to make our toys better, faster, and the envy of our friends. So, if you want to “Jetson-ize” your home theater, here are 5 apps you need to download.
on 01-26-201411:03 AM - last edited on 01-27-201401:42 PM by BBYMartin
Last October I was fortunate enough to test out the Bose SoundTouch 20, and it passed with flying colours. My previous post provides a fairly detailed assessment. This time I checked out the SoundTouch 30 alongside the SoundTouch 20, and got to see how they work together and how they compare. I knew the 20 is a great unit, and found the 30 to be a fantastic step up, but both units have a place in any home.
HDTV is all about that crisp picture with intense colours and the technology is about to take a leap at this year's Super Bowl transmission. CBS Sports is introducing Heyeper Zoom delivering with video at 3840 x 2160 resolution.
The new 4K SmartTVs will be able to deliver the goods on the Heyeper Zoom but you could also consider installing a new HDTV antenna.
Learn what you need to do to bring 4K to your HDTV.
There are many instances in which a smaller TV makes sense. For a room where TV viewing isn’t the primary activity, like the den, basement, or kid’s room; for a college dorm or space-challenged apartment; or for someone who’s just on a very tight budget, and might find the tradeoff in size for price sufficient to meet his TV viewing needs.
Buying a new TV can be overwhelming. It’s a major expense and it’s important that you’re getting the most amount of quality for your money. Thankfully, the LG 47” LED 1080p 120Hz HDTV is on for a great price, so get it while you still can!
on 01-18-201411:31 AM - last edited on 01-27-201410:50 AM by BBYMartin
We are quickly approaching the biggest day for football, Super Bowl Sunday. Not only is it the most viewed of all TV shows, it's the second biggest eating day of the year in the US next to Thanksgiving. I am not sure about Canada, but I bet it's up there too. Nothing beats being at a live game –the tailgating with all the food, drink, and side entertainment, not to mention the game. But for less than the cost of a ticket to the big game, you can create the next best thing to being there, and then enjoy it for many years to come. I am talking about having a big awesome looking flat screen with excellent sound to go with it.
Now that we are full on into January, you have been enjoying all those new electronic toys that came with Xmas. In the excitement of using them, have you taken the time to make sure that they are properly protected?
Getting a decent surge protector is a very small investment compared to the cost of all the equipment you are protecting.
A lot has been written about the merits of and need for surge protection for your equipment - just look at TechLinz’s post called Power Surge Ready. Here I’ll talk about three surge protectors very well worth looking at for that ultimatel peace of mind.
The culmination of the NFL season is right around the corner and you know what that means? Yes, it’s that time of year again – Super Bowl Sunday is the ultimate day for football fans everywhere who have been anxiously waiting the best thrills and spills in football, not to mention some of the best appies and snacks to hit your plate since Christmas.
on 01-10-201401:23 PM - last edited on 01-10-201404:35 PM by BBYMartin
This year’s CES is over today and it has been a great showcase for TV, Smartphone, tablet, computer, and a myriad of other technologies. With all this technology, the irony is that Apple did not launch anything, Google was not exhibiting, and Microsoft can’t be found on the show room floor either. Although these heavy hitters aren’t there, a lot of other major players did use the opportunity to introduce new product lines. CES is also a great opportunity to launch novelty products and prototypes of all sorts. I found some over-the-top innovations and have to wonder if they will ever trickle down to the everyday consumer.
on 01-10-201410:28 AM - last edited on 01-10-201410:40 AM by BBYMartin
Sony has come to CES with lots of innovative products and the strongest commitment to 4K Video of all the vendors. They introduced new and affordable 4K camcorders, a partnership with Netflix to deliver more 4K content, a full lineup of 4K flat screens, a 4K video distribution network, and Playstation Now which will ultimately deliver 4K gaming. Just to make sure they have everything 4K fully covered, they also unveiled a 4K Ultra Short Throw Projector that I think is fantastic!
on 01-09-201408:20 PM - last edited on 01-10-201409:18 AM by BBYMartin
Last year we saw a lot of great new wireless sound systems come into the market. Sonos, the undisputed leader in wireless sound, introduced their Play series of excellent speakers. A few competitors ready to take on Sonos is Bose with their SoundTouch system, and Polk with their Woodbourne. There are also quite a variety of other excellent Bluetooth wireless speakers from iHome, Sony, Edifier, Samsung, and others. So it was hard to know what to expect, but this year’s CES was not a disappointment. Samsung, ClearView, Fugoo, Creative Technology, and a few other new players brought yet more new and innovative wireless sound systems to the show.
on 01-08-201408:45 PM - last edited on 01-10-201409:41 AM by BBYMartin
Consumers want more control over their content rather than have to purchase all the packaged TV channels from the cable and satellite companies in order to watch the few channels they really want. Internet streaming gives that control and will give even more control in future. People are starting to disconnect their cable provider by getting their content elsewhere and media streaming is a big part of that solution. So it is no surprise that the likes of Roku and Apple TV and a myriad of other media streaming devices have grown substantially over the last few years. At CES 2014, we are seeing even more changes in the streaming market as it becomes even more mainstream.
on 01-08-201411:08 AM - last edited on 01-09-201412:16 PM by BBYMartin
Panasonic surprisingly killed its’ plasma TV lines last year, so we expected them to come to CES with some exciting announcements introducing a lot of new TV products. Well, they surprised us again. Instead of bringing a large number of new TV lines like Sharp, Sony, LG, and Samsung did, their lineup for 2014 looks fairly sparse. But that may not be a bad thing, because it is often the case that less is more. By having fewer lines, just like they did with plasma, it may just provide them the focus needed for delivering a superior product. They have already started by replacing their Smart “Viera Cast” platform with a much improved “Life +” platform.
on 01-07-201409:05 PM - last edited on 02-24-201404:43 PM by BBYMartin
Sony has always been a household name in consumer electronics, but lately have found themselves in the shadow of their Korean competitors – primarily Samsung. Sony came armed to CES 2014 with a myriad of innovative devices including GoPro-like mountable cameras, a Walkman waterproof media player, wearable health trackers, 4K video cameras, and even a tennis sensor that sends data from your racquet to your smart phone – Nadal beware! Sony also came with a full TV lineup that is promoting 4K Ultra HD harder than anyone – and for good reason!
on 01-07-201410:22 AM - last edited on 01-10-201409:41 AM by BBYMartin
The Sharp Aquos line has been a popular one for some time, and at CES 2014, Sharp made a surprising announcement on how they are making it even better. Everyone expected them to announce a new 4K Ultra High Definition television, following suit with the likes of Samsung, LG and others. Instead their big announcement is their Aquos Quattron Plus, which is a non-4K TV that can play 4K Ultra HD content. Even though Sharp is also bringing out an Aquos 4K line of TV's, the Aquos Quattron Plus is their game changer.
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