Home Theater

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Integrating PC-Based Gaming into Your Home Theater

Although most people think of console gaming as something you do in the living room (or home theater room) and PC gaming as something you do in the home office or at a desk somewhere, in fact PC-based [more…]

HDTV Insights: Creating Virtual Surround Sound

You need at least 5 speakers for real surround sound in a viewing room, but your brain can think you're surrounded by speakers when you aren't.

For example, the folks at Dolby Labs have a couple of systems [more…]

HDTV Insights: Using a PC for Blu-ray or High-Definition DVD

PC manufacturers are starting to equip their high-end PCs with Blu-ray disc drives. This makes a lot of sense simply because high-definition DVD formats can hold a lot more data than standard DVDs can [more…]

Feeding Video into Your Home Theater

You can get movies (and TV shows and other video content) into your home theater system in many ways — such as plugging into a cable or satellite TV system. For most folks, however, watching a movie means [more…]

Understanding How Speaker Drivers Work

Audio speakers are relatively simple devices. Basically, you have an enclosure (typically a box) into which speaker drivers are attached. The drivers are the round elements that many people call the actual [more…]

Introducing High-End Home Theater

The idea that you can move up to the high end when you're buying components and setting up a home theater may see a little vague to you. Everyone's got his or her own definition of [more…]

Considering Projection HDTV Design

Projection HDTVs have two distinct formats: [more…]

Understanding the Different Pole Positions of Speakers

Although you'll most often find two-way (woofer and tweeter) and three-way (woofer, tweeter, and midrange driver) speakers on the market, you'll also run into speakers with more than one set of speaker [more…]

Changing TiVo's Phone Number and Dialing Options

TiVo must phone its headquarters every day or so to grab your latest show listings. It also needs to phone its headquarters when you first set it up in your home. Unlike a teenager, TiVo doesn't need its [more…]

A Battle in the Home Theater: High Definition DVD Formats

In February 2008, Blu-ray emerged as the winner in the high-definition DVD format war, when rival Toshiba gave up on its HD DVD format. This article offers previous coverage on the beginnings of the format [more…]

Picking Out — and Pricing — Home Theater Equipment

Home theater is truly for everyone — regardless of the size of your house or apartment, your economic wealth, or your taste in movies. And home theater probably means something different to everyone. It's [more…]

Setting Parental Controls in TiVo

When television entered the house in the late 1940s, networks wouldn't consider running a show unless it was appropriate for the entire family. In today's world of cable and satellite programming, that's [more…]

Adding Fiber Optic Lights to Your HDTV Experience

You don't have to be deep in the heart of Texas to see stars on your HDTV room's ceiling. In fact, you can buy neat fiber optic kits to add all sorts of effects to your HDTV theater. Companies such as [more…]

Getting Acquainted with TiVo

Until you've seen TiVo in action, you can't quite understand all the hubbub. Isn't a "TiVo" just a glorified VCR? Everybody already has a VCR; nothing new here, move along. Yet people aren't moving along [more…]

HDTV Insights: Introducing High-Definition Camcorders

So if you can link your SD camcorder to your regular TV, what's the big deal with HD versions? Lots of pixels, for one thing — three times as many pixels as the best offered by National Television System [more…]

Thin Is In When It Comes to HDTV Displays

Flat-panel TV technology — super-thin HDTVs that you can hang on the wall like a painting — have really taken off in popularity. A big-screen, flat-panel plasma or LCD TV has become [more…]

Creating TiVo Playlists and WishLists

TiVo is a master organizer — in fact, that's pretty much all it does. So you shouldn't hesitate to ask TiVo to play a list of songs in whatever order you decide. And definitely don't think twice about [more…]

Putting TiVo's Home Media Option to Work

The Home Media Option (HMO) lets TiVo make friends with your computer. When you tell your computer what items to share, TiVo dutifully places them on its handy menus. TiVo expands the viewing potential [more…]

Getting to Know the Four Basic Shapes and Sizes of Speakers

You'll probably run into four generic shape and size categories of speakers for your home audio system. These four categories are: [more…]

Understanding the Importance of Your Speakers' Enclosure

Your speaker enclosure, it turns out, is pretty critical. You see, with all the shaking your drivers do, if you have a rather flimsy speaker encasement, then it's either going to make a lot of noise, fall [more…]

Going for Good Service with Your HDTV Purchase

When you're buying an HDTV set, you're spending a relatively serious chunk of change. Heck, even if you're loaded, spending $10,000 or more on a front-projector system starts to move out of the pocket-change [more…]

Knowing Where to Find HDTV Programming

In the vein of "all dressed up and nowhere to go," HDTVs would be no good without content to show on them — native, high-definition content, that is. Hollywood has done its usual: [more…]

Considering HDTV Copy-Protection Systems

Film and television studios are worried about people copying their programs and distributing them to others. HDTV (and DTV in general) is worrisome to the studios because people might be able to make [more…]

HDTV Insights: Knowing Why Altitude Can Matter with Plasma TVs

Plasma TVs rely on a thin layer of gas (which gets ionized and eventually turns into the picture you see). If you think back to your chemistry classes in high school and college, you might start remembering [more…]

Newer Audio Formats: SACD and DVD-A

The CD is the most common audio source in disc format, but SACD (Super Audio Compact Disc) and the DVD-Audio disc are also available. The SACD and DVD-Audio [more…]

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