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Archive for Home Theater

Maingear Axess HD: Hardcore Gaming comes to HTPCs

Posted in Home Theater by Conner Flynn on June 18th, 2009

Maingear Axess HD: Hardcore Gaming comes to HTPCsMaingear’s Axess HD Gamer aims to park hardcore PC gaming in your living room with a Core i7 processor, up to 12GB of DDR3 memory, 2x NVIDIA GeForce 9800 GT cards in SLI, a Phantom Lapboard and robust media center capabilities.

The Axess HD can include a Blu-ray drive, 8-channel HD audio, WIndows Vista Home Premium and up to 4TB of hard drive storage or…dual 160GB SSDs. Connections include: DVI-D, VGA, HDMI and component out, dual gigabit ethernet, eight USB 2.0 ports, two 6-pin FireWire ports and eSATA.

Syabas Popcorn C-200 settop box revealed

Posted in Home Theater by Shane McGlaun on June 18th, 2009

popcornc-200-sbIt seems like the big thing in the technology world today is to make everything stream Internet programming to your TV. The Xbox can do it, some TVs can do it, and there are tons of settop boxes that can stream media from the Internet to your TV. I do like the idea of watching Hulu on my big screen, but everything else I can do without.

Syabas has announced a new settop box called the C-200 that supports Blu-ray and just about every video file format under the sun. The device supports 30 formats including MPEG 1, 2, 4, AVI, H.264, Xvid, MKV, Windows Media and many more.

Cideko Air Keyboard is also a 3D mouse, remote control

Posted in Home Theater by Conner Flynn on June 17th, 2009

Cideko Air Keyboard is also a 3D mouse, remote controlSome of you want something more in your HTPC keyboard than just a multitouch trackpad. Lucky for you, Cideko has your back. Their Air Keyboard has a built-in 3D mouse that will have you waving it around and hitting people in the head. But that;s not all.

It also features two gamepad-style buttons in place of standard mouse buttons. Other than that it has all of the usual media control buttons, and a range of 50 meters. The battery life is 50 hours.

Akai AISS010 All-in-one Home Theater System

Posted in Home Theater by Conner Flynn on June 15th, 2009

Akai AISS010 All-in-one Home Theater SystemThis Akai AISS010 All-in-oneHome theater system has it all. We’re not sure, but there may even be a place that spits out movie tickets, in case you miss the theater.

Some features include: Docks and charges iPod, Compatible with CD/ DVD/CD-R/CD-RW/MP3/WMA/VCD/JPEG/DIVX/MPEG4, AM/FM radio with digital readout, HDMI 1080P, Supports USB and card audio playing, Built-in DVD player, LCD clock display, Composite video, S-video, Y, Cb, Cr video output, Supports all iPods, Digital coaxial & optical audio output, VFD Multi-function display, Automatic age lock and screen protection function, Remote control unit, 2.1 + 1 track power output (double sub-woofer), 4″ x 4 + 5″ x2 bass speaker 40w + 20w*2 (RMS 10% THD).

Blockbuster offers summer escape pass

Posted in Home Theater by Shane McGlaun on June 12th, 2009

blockbuster-sbI remember summers back when I was in school. It was great for a few weeks and then I was bored out of my mind. I ended up watching lots of movies and playing video games until my parents cut me off for spending too much.

Blockbuster has announced a new summer escape pass that is good for a full week and allows customers to rent all the video games and movies they want for only $10. The catch is that you can only have one movie or video game out at once.

Digital transition is tomorrow 2.8 million homes not ready

Posted in Home Theater by Shane McGlaun on June 11th, 2009

radioshackdtx9550-sb1I haven’t really worried about the digital transition; I have a newer TV and use satellite rather than watching over-the-air broadcasts. Many people are like me, but there are lots who will be affected by the digital transition. The big switch happens tomorrow.

According to Nielsen Company despite the fact that today is the last full day of analog TV broadcasts, 2.8 million homes across America are not ready for the digital transition. That number represents 2.5% of the entire TV viewing population around the country.

Radio Shack says rescan converter box after transition

Posted in Home Theater by Shane McGlaun on June 10th, 2009

radioshackdtx9550-sbI am getting tired of hearing about the digital transition. I thought we should have just switched in February as we had planned for over a year to digital broadcasts. So many people weren’t ready for the transition that it was delayed until June 12.

While more people are ready now according to some reports, there are still millions of people that have not prepared. Even Obama says there will be no more delays this time around. Those of you who are ready with your converters already may still have problems come June 12.

Features of HDMI spec version 1.4 announced

Posted in Home Theater by Shane McGlaun on May 28th, 2009

hdmi-sbWe can all thank HDMI for releasing us form the need for running a second cable for audio from our components to the TV or A/V receiver. I still have nightmares of having to switch the optical cable from source to source manually each time I wanted to play a game or watch TV.

HDMI Licensing LLC has announced some of the major features coming in the new HDMI v1.4 spec. The full specification list is set for availability no later than June 30, 2009. Among the new features is an HDMI Ethernet channel that allows HDMI devices to connect to each other with 100Mbps speed without the need for additional cables.

Yoostar entertainment system launching in August

Posted in Home Theater by Shane McGlaun on May 21st, 2009

yoostar-sbThere was so much to see at CES 2009 back in January that I missed a lot of it. Each year at the show, there are some very interesting products that define new categories and let people do things that many haven’t even thought of.

One of the products I missed at the show was the Yoostar system that uses a green screen and a high-resolution webcam to make some movie magic. The system includes a webcam, mic, remote control, stand, and green screen and allows users to insert themselves into popular movies.

RealD announces RealD LP accessory for 3D ready projectors

Posted in Home Theater by Shane McGlaun on May 5th, 2009

reald-logo-sbI have seen several of the new breed of 3D films at the theater over the last year. The most recent was the Aliens vs. Monsters flick that used RealD technology for all the 3D goodness the film offered. I will be happy when 3D finally comes affordably to the living room so I can watch my favorite shows in 3D.

RealD has announced today a new accessory for 3D ready projectors that is design for use in the home or office on screens up to 17-feet across. The accessory is called the RealD LP and promises to bring the 3D quality from the local cinema to small venues like conference rooms and other places.

Solar Powered Home Theater system

Posted in Home Theater by Conner Flynn on April 19th, 2009

Solar-powered gadgets are nothing new. But a solar powered home theater system? It’s appropriately named the “Guiltless Green Home Theater” and was manufactured from scratch by Home Theater Specialists of America (HTSA). It’s the first of its kind and has some surprising specs.

For one thing it will give you up to 19 hours of video and audio playback even if the sun isn’t shining that day. They didn’t sacrifice quality either, with a Sharp projector, a 100″ Stewart Filmscreen, six SpeakerCraft in-wall speakers, an Integra AV receiver, Monster Cable wiring, Lutron lighting, and Universal Remote Control.

LEGO movie theater with working projector

Posted in Home Theater by Conner Flynn on March 31st, 2009

LEGO movie theater with working projectorThis tiny LEGO movie theater is awesome. It actually features a working, very tiny movie projector. The projector works at 24 fps, so it may not be good picture quality, but Lego minifigs have a different eyesight than you have. It’s nicely detailed. Even the seats are numbered. Make sure you check out the video below.

The builder, Ricardo M. Oliv, did an awesome job. Now all he needs is full length movies and he can sell tickets to other geeks who can sit their minifigs in the seats with a miniature popcorn and soda.

Global TV sales revenue fell in Q4 2008

Posted in Home Theater by Shane McGlaun on February 19th, 2009

Flat Screen TVWe all know the economy is bad, businesses are closing, people are out of work and technology and many other industries are seeing very slow sales. The housing market in many areas is virtually dead. The recession has significantly impacted TV sales.

According to DisplaySearch, Q4 2008 was the first quarter in history that saw a decline in TV revenues. At the same time revenues declined shipments were up 33% year over year. The reason for shipments increasing and revenues falling is lower prices forced by poor sales.

Popular Super Bowl Commercials on GridCast TV

Posted in Home Theater by Shane McGlaun on January 30th, 2009

Victoria’s Secret CommercialI spend most of my year avoiding commercials to the extent that I don’t even know what movies are at the theater frequently. I can thank my DVR for the lack of product advertisement bliss I enjoy during a normal night of TV watching.

The one time a year that I actually like to watch commercials is during the Super Bowl. That seems more than a little odd to me, but still I watch them and often rewind them thanks to my trusty DVR. If you are a big fan of Super Bowl commercials, superbowl-ads.com has the spots going back to 1998 available for you to watch.

CasaTools whips out touchscreen multi-room music server

Posted in Home Theater by Shane McGlaun on January 28th, 2009

CasaTools XL Music ServerHaving music in each room of your house is a great feature for music fans and fans of home automation. Many of the music servers that offer multi-room audio allow you to listen to different tracks and sources in each room.

CasaTools has announced its latest multi-room music server called the CasaTunes XL music Server. The system allows you to play music from multiple sources like your PC, iTunes, iPhone, AM/FM tuner and more. Each room can listen to their own songs and different sources.