Buying a home projector sounds easy at first: You get a screen, you get a projector, you aim it at the screen – and presto, theater-like movie time! But reality quickly teaches us that home projectors are very cool, but also a little complicated. They don't follow the same rules as TV screens, and they have extra features to consider and choose between.
4K television sets have been available for sale for a couple of years now, but there hasn't been a lot of content available in the native 2160p resolution for owners of the pixel-dense displays. That's about to change, as 4K UHD discs are set to debut in late February. To view the discs, you'll need an updated disc player, and Panasonic has announced the UB900 Ultra HD Blu-ray player which will be available soon in both Europe and the US. It'll support 1,000-10,000 nits output, BT.2020 color gamut, 60fps high frame-rate support, and will even sport twin HDMI output, allowing you to separate where you send the video signal from where you send the audio. Studios like Sony, Warner Bros., and Fox are readying the releases of their UHD Blu-ray discs, many of which also support HDR. 2016 is setting up to be a big year for 4K technology.
TiVo has been around for a long time, and in an attempt to appeal to a wider audience, it’s released the TiVo Bolt - going from just DVR to Unified Entertainment System--and it's good enough to be included in our 2015 Holiday Gift Guide. The standout feature is SkipMode, which allows you to skip commercials when watching your favorite shows with the press of a single button. QuickMode is also cool, playing shows at 1.3x speed with pitch correction, so you can get through those binge-watching sessions even quicker. It’s 4K-compatible, and supports a bunch of streaming video services (although Amazon Prime Instant Video seems to be absent for some odd reason.) TiVo still sports the best DVR interface in the business, and the Bolt includes one year of TiVo service with purchase.
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When Jurassic Park was originally released back when I was a kid, I thought it was one of the best movies I had ever seen (in fact, it probably was, given my young age!) Seeing dinosaurs look so realistic was something you had to see, and the only way to truly experience the scope of the movie and the details in the CGI was to see it in a movie theater.
Now, here we are some 22 years later, and fourth movie in the series, Jurassic World, is set to be released in a week-and-a-half. Television technology has evolved to the point where the home viewing of today rivals the cinema experience of yesteryear. Last night I took a trip over to Best Buy so that I could check out the exclusive Jurassic World clip being shown on Samsung SUHD Ultra 4K television sets.
Television manufacturers like Samsung, LG, Sony, and Vizio are betting big on 2015 being a breakout year for Ultra HD 4K televisions. If you’re unfamiliar, 4K TVs deliver video content at 2160p. That’s 3840×2160 pixels, which means it’s hitting you with 4x the resolution of the 1080p (1920x1080 pixels) set you’re likely already used to. Streaming services like Netflix, Amazon Instant Video, and YouTube are already pumping out 4K content, with more to come. It all may sound great, but it’s really something you need to see for yourself to believe—luckily, Best Buy is ready to give you that up-close and personal look.
TiVo has launched a trio of next-generation Series 5 DVRs in the new TiVo Roamio family. What makes Roamio so much better than Premiere? How about more of everything that people love about TiVo? We're talking more tuners, more space to store your recordings, and even a less expensive service fee. The crowning feature, though, is that the TiVo Roamio boxes have both Wi-Fi and the ability to stream to mobile devices built right in--no need to purchase the TiVo Wi-Fi dongle, or the recently-released TiVo Stream.
It's been almost two years since TiVo released the Premiere Elite line of DVRs, and unlike the previous generation, the improvements in the Roamio line are immediately apparent. TiVo even says that Roamio is, on average, 1.7x faster than the previous TiVos, and that's a welcome change because browsing through the menus was a time-consuming experience at times. We go through all three Roamio DVRs after the break, but if you've been waiting for them and just want to buy now, here are the links:
- TiVo Roamio - $199: 4 tuners, OTA support, up to 75 hours
- TiVo Roamio Plus - $399: 6 tuners, up to 150 hours
- TiVo Roamio Pro - $599: 6 tuners, up to 450 hours
In this episode we give you a look at the TiVo Mini. With the TiVo Mini, you can connect a television that is not hooked up to your cable signal and stream live TV and recorded content to it. This means you you can access your TiVo content on a second television. The TiVo Mini can even access the subscription-based services that your full-sized TiVo can! To use the TiVo Mini, you need a 4-tuner TiVo Series 4. You can pick up the TiVo Mini here.
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We chat with LG about its new 4K Ultra HD television, the 84LM9600. Retailing for $19,999, the 85LM9600 sports amazing detail, bringing you content upscaled to 4K on its massive 84-inch 3840 x 2160 display. It also boasts LG Cinema 3D, Smart TV, and LED Plus with local dimming.
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If you've got a home theater nut in your life and you wanna get them a gift that they'll use on an almost daily basis with joy, you'll wanna check out the Darbee Darblet, our next recommendation in our 2012 Holiday Gift Guide. So, what's so special about the oddly-named Darblet? Well, it just makes your high-definition content look amazing. No, really, this is like nothing you've ever seen before. It adds a level of depth and clarity that is unmatched, all with a simple set-it-and-forget it interface. You can pick up the Darbee Darblet on Amazon.
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We always recommend that HDTV purchasers get their sets calibrated professionally--you just end up getting way more for your money when your television is optimized for your viewing environment. When we heard about the Darbee Darblet from DarbeeVision, we were skeptical. This is supposed to be a gadget that you integrate into your home theater setup that adds a level of sharpness and depth that's unreachable even with hours of calibration. Sounds like a cheap gimmick, right? Well, we decided to put the Darblet to the test, and…wow…we came away impressed. Join us in our Darbee Darblet review to find out why every videophile needs to pick one of these up!