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How To Hook Up a High Definition Television

The television viewing experience is quickly heading toward HD. High Definition is becoming the new standard for televisions. Many of the networks are now offering a lot of their programs with digital sound and HD. If you’re not tech savvy, hooking an HD television up can be a little daunting.

There are a complex group of inputs and outputs on the back of HDTV’s. Getting everything hooked up properly into these small ports can mean the difference between loving your new television and wanting to take it back for a refund!

Most HD televisions will have these small ports color coded. The white, yellow and red ports are your audio video ports. Almost all new televisions will have several of these ports to allow you to connect other electronics such as a DVD player and a gaming console.

The S-Video Line-in will be a round port that has a slit and multiple holes. It’s generally used to provide the video for a DVD player. It will give you a clearer picture than the normal yellow plug. The DVI port supplies a digital picture, but it won’t provide any sound. HDMI provides  both digital sound and picture.

The Digital Audio Optical Input/Output also provides digital sound. Using these ports will give you a crisp, clear sound that is much better than the basic red and white ports. The CB, CR and Y input and output can be used for better picture quality. They’re generally red, blue and green and can be used in place of the yellow port.

The Cable Satellite input port is where you get the input to the television from the cable. You’ll only need to use this port if you don’t have a digital converter box. Now that you know what everything does, you can figure out the best way to hook up your HDTV.

For the very best sound and picture, hook your cable to the digital converter box. Use the HDMI or DVI ports to connect the converter box to the A/V input. Now connect the A/V receiver up to the input ports located
on the back of the television. When using the DVI port, remember that it’s only for the video. So make sure you also connect the digital/audio on the converter box to the A/V port that’s on the television.

If you’re happy to just have better sight and sound than ordinary television connect your CB, CR and Y outputs into the converter box to the same coded inputs that are on the A/V receiver. And, connect them to the matching ports on the back of the television.

The fastest and easiest way to hook up your HDTV is by connecting your converter box to the receiver using the S-Video cable. Then use another S-Video cable to hook the box to the television. To have audio you’ll need to connect the red and white cables into the television.

While using the S-Video cables will let you watch your favorite programs, it won’t be of the best quality. In fact, the sound and picture quality will be very similar to what you got from your ordinary television. If you’re going to invest the money in the latest technology, then why not spend the extra time hooking it up to get the quality that you paid for?

How To Choose a Big Screen Television

More and more people are creating their own home theaters these days. While they might seem like a luxury, a home theater is the perfect place to relax and unwind after a stressful day. And, as the prices are coming down on big screen televisions more people are purchasing them.

Any television, whether it’s big screen or not is a considerable purchase and you want to make sure that you’re going to be happy with the one you choose. There are some simple tips to help you in shopping for a big screen television.

While it might seem the bigger the screen the better, size is the main issue that you need to really think about. Having a television that is way too big for the room will make watching it pretty uncomfortable. Decide where you want the television to be, then measure the approximate distance from there to where you’ll normally be sitting.

When you shop for a television, measure off the distance and stand there to see how the picture looks. The largest screen you can find might be nice, but if your room only allows you to be six feet from the screen, you might not enjoy the gigantic movie! A good rule to follow on screen size is to be three times the size away from the screen. For example, if the screen is 3 feet in height, you’ll want to be nine feet away from it.

While flat panel televisions will fit into almost any room and look really great, they’re much more expensive than a big screen television. So, unless you’re willing to pay a lot more for the convenience, you might want to avoid them.

You’ll also need to decide what format you want. There’s widescreen and letterbox. Most television shows are still in letterbox format, but almost all of the new movies are being done in widescreen now. Eventually, widescreen might be the standard format for all television shows and movies. But, the format choice is just a matter of personal preference.

Now we move on to all of the technical jargon, CRT, LCD, DLP and of course HD. Most people already know that HD is high definition, but few people are familiar with the other terms. Purchasing a television that doesn’t have HD can save quite a bit of money and the picture will still look good. Again, it’s a matter of preference and affordability.

Your old television set is most likely CRT. The first big screens were CRT, if you ever saw one you probably noticed that if you were sitting to the side the picture quality was fairly bad. With CRT’s unless you’re sitting pretty much in front of the screen, you may just see dark! But, again it’s the difference in prices that you’ll have to consider.

The same goes for LCD and DLP, when viewing at odd angles. The picture  quality with DLP is excellent, unless you’re sitting off to one side and then it will be slightly dim. And, in both types, the bulbs can burn out and be really expensive to fix.

How To Install A Surround Sound System

Adding a surround sound system can really make a big difference in the quality of your television and entertainment systems sound. It can actually make it seem like the sounds are surrounding you! But, knowing the right way to set the speakers up, can increase the sound quality even more.

Most 5.1 surround sound systems have five speakers and one subwoofer. Your main speakers will be the right and left front speakers. Around 70% of the sound will be coming from these speakers, so the correct placement is crucial. These speakers should be placed in front of you and at the center of the television.

The center channel needs to be placed in the exact center of your room and as close to your television as you can get it. The center channel speaker is where all of the voices will come from, so the closer it is placed to the television set the clearer and more vivid the voices will be.

You can place your rear speakers on either side or behind you. They should also be placed an equal distance from the rooms center. These speakers actually provide the special effect sounds, you’ll almost think that those bullets are really blazing right by your head!

However, as nice as they are, rear speakers are the most difficult to position. If you’re not lucky enough to have a home theater room that was designed for rear speakers, it can be really frustrating to install them. It’s very hard to keep them sounding good, while keeping them hidden from plain sight.

If you’re creating your home theater room and haven’t installed carpeting yet, you can run all of the speaker wires before laying carpet. You can purchase special wire that is thin enough to not even be noticeable underneath the carpeting. Decide where you want all of the speakers to be, run the wires, lay the carpet and then use speaker stands to mount your speakers.

If you’re installing a surround sound system in an upstairs room and have access to an attic, you can run the wires up in the attic and through small holes in the ceiling. You can even install the speakers into recessed areas of the ceiling so that they’re flush with the ceilings surface. You can also purchase universal mounts to attach the speakers to the ceiling.

If you’re willing to invest an extra $100 or so to get the sound quality that you want, you can opt to go wireless. The speakers aren’t actually wireless, but you can buy a kit that will create a link from your receiver to the back of the room so that you don’t have to run wires across the entire length of the room.

The kit contains a unit that connects into the rear terminals of your receiver, a second unit is then connected to the rear speakers and plugs into an electrical outlet. You can use speaker stands or towers to place the speakers where ever you want them, or hang them on the wall.

The last speaker you’ll need to install is your subwoofer. Luckily it doesn’t matter where you put this one. The subwoofer supplies all of the bass and can be positioned anywhere that’s convenient. But, to get the best quality sound, don’t block or cover the subwoofer.

Hanging a Plasma TV on Your Wall

If you have ever hung a heavy picture or another heavy object on your wall only to see it fall down in an hour or so, chances are, it was not hung properly. You have to take into consideration the weight of the object, in this case a plasma TV, before you hang it on your wall. You have to search out and studs in order to make sure that the object will remain securely on the wall. (more…)