A Year Without Cable TV

A little over a year ago, I went cold turkey with Cable. I had literally everything that one of the big providers could offer (as my sister-in-law worked there, and we owned a two-flat with her). In this article, I'll share my experiences and the current state of play with TV in my house. Mark Anderson is a long-time home theater enthusiast and lives on the bleeding edge of Home Automation. He will be covering everything related to Home Automation and AV. He is also a regular contributor to avystemsmag.com, where he covers commercial AV and automation.Please welcome Mark to the HomeToys team.

NFC coming to a smart phone near you

NFC stands for Near Field Communication. So, what does this mean? If you attend a trade show and meet someone, whom you would like to exchange business cards, you both can touch your NFC smart phones to the other's show badge and the information is exchanged. You no longer have to carry a pocket full of business cards, or have to sort cards after the show.

Interview - What is WiGig (Wireless Gigabit Alliance)?

Founded in March 2007, by a core team of executives and engineers from Intel's Wi-Fi Centrino® group, Wilocity is developing next-generation 60 GHz multi-gigabit wireless chipsets for both the mobile computing platform and peripheral markets that will enable mobile device manufacturers to deliver the thin and light platforms that consumers want without sacrificing the performance and functionality that consumers need. Based on the Wireless Gigabit Alliance (WiGig) specification, Wilocity's wPCIe TM technology will enable truly multi-gigabit wireless for a wide range of applications from I/O to networking to video.

Nature Could Make SSD the Storage Solution Everyone Will Enjoy Soon

Higher performance, higher reliability, light weight per capacity and lower power consumption are just a few of the many advantages that are making SSDs the drives of choice for power users, gamers and anyone who  wants high-speed and low latency-- including  businesses.

Control Protocol Design
A Guide for Controllable Hardware Manufacturers

This document is for developers of hardware devices which are intended for external control by automation systems, specialized control applications, or hardware controllers, via some sort of wired or wireless connection. Any such device must expose a 'control protocol' which defines the form and meaning of commands and information passing between the two involved parties. This document describes how to create a high quality control protocol, and the considerations thereof. The information in this document is intended to improve the quality of automation at the most fundamental level, because automation systems are no better than the extent to which they can reliably and conveniently provide control over the customer's devices, and long experience has shown that far too many devices have substandard control protocols. This document starts out fairly simply and generically, so if you already have some experience in this area, you may wish to skip forward a bit to the more detailed technical sections.

Control Protocol Design

This document is for developers of hardware devices which are intended for external control by automation systems, specialized control applications, or hardware controllers, via some sort of wired or wireless connection. Any such device must expose a 'control protocol' which defines the form and meaning of commands and information passing between the two involved parties. This document describes how to create a high quality control protocol, and the considerations thereof. The information in this document is intended to improve the quality of automation at the most fundamental level, because automation systems are no better than the extent to which they can reliably and conveniently provide control over the customer's devices, and long experience has shown that far too many devices have substandard control protocols. This document starts out fairly simply and generically, so if you already have some experience in this area, you may wish to skip forward a bit to the more detailed technical sections.

Why are Cable Companies Adopting ZigBee RF4CE for consumer electronics - remote controls, TVs and

The new generation of remote controls provides more than some additional convenience for the consumer: it bolsters the position of cable operators into our home and provides them with an avenue for new services. If cable companies want to survive - they have to innovate. ZigBee RF4CE is an important path to their prosperity and growth!

Digital to Analog Audio Conversion

Computers use a binary counting method that allows them to work with very large numbers - and the size of this number depends on how many bits they have.  In the case of most recordings, 16 bits are used to count.  In the case of the PS DAC, 32 bits are possible.  So all that happens is the analog music signal goes into a digital counting device and the musical energy is converted to numbers - bigger numbers for higher levels and smaller numbers for lower levels of music.

Interview - What is ZigBee RF4CE?

Removing the clutter of multiple remote controls scattered around the coffee table is a silent desire of many consumers. But the real driving factor for acceptance of RF4CE is cable TV companies and service providers who want to expand their service into the home. Specifically, the remote control has become the key point of contact with the consumer, so what more can be done with it?

Superior Digital Video Images through Multi‐Dimensional Color Tables

The recent color improvements in televisions and video projectors, the desire to enjoy entertainment media on smaller, lower quality devices and the static digital color standards have created a unique need for new video color processing technology.

The Sweet Spot

As an audiophile you want the best performance, and you probably aren't above spending money and trying tweaks of various sorts to help you get it. But there are real improvements that can be had without extra accessories or emptying your wallet. Amplifying circuitry can be made better without more complexity and without more feedback. The best part of this for do-it-yourselfers is that these are things that can be done on your own bench, costing mostly just the time it takes to tweak the circuit and evaluate the results. Moreover, this approach is not seen on the factory floor - for most manufacturers it's simply too time consuming to do, and the rest probably never heard of it.

Secrets of Amplifier and Speaker Power Requirements Revealed

As audio/video hobbyists, most of us grew up thinking that if we have an amplifier with 50 watts of rated output power into 8-ohm speakers, and that combination produces reasonably clean and loud music, then by doubling the amplifier power to 100 watts per channel, the system would then play twice as loud. Many readers likely still believe that. Not so.

WirelessHD

WirelessHD products have been available since last year but I believe we're about to see it go even more mainstream with the onset of products coming on the market at under $2000 for a high-end LCD TV.

1Gbps Entertainment-grade Home Networking

Gigle has developed a new architecture for home networking over existing wires (powerline, coaxial cable, and phoneline) that delivers the sustained high bandwidth, quality of service, ease of use, flexibility of installation, and management capabilities required by the most demanding home multimedia networks - such as distribution of multiple HD video streams throughout the home.

60GHz and WirelessHD® - Now In Your Living Room

There are many options on the horizon for consumers looking to update their home entertainment systems with high-powered wireless technology.

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Featured Product

PureLink - HCE III TX/RX: 4K HDR over HDBaseT Extension System w/ Control and Bi-Directional PoE

PureLink - HCE III TX/RX: 4K HDR over HDBaseT Extension System w/ Control and Bi-Directional PoE

The HCE III Tx/Rx HDBaseT™ extension system offers full HDMI 2.0 compliance supporting HDR (High Dynamic Range) and 4K@60Hz with 4:4:4 chroma sampling. Featuring PureLink's proprietary Prcis codec, a light compression technology, the HCE III can transport Ultra HD/4K, multi-channel audio, and High Dynamic Range (10 bits support) content over a single CATx cable. The HCE III provides HDMI extension up to 130 feet (40 meters) at Ultra HD/4K and up to 230 ft. (70 meters) at 1080p over category cable with embedded multi-channel audio, CEC pass-through, bi-directional RS-232 and IR control, and PoE - all with zero loss and zero noise. The HCE III Tx/Rx also supports Dolby TrueHD, Dolby Digital Plus and DTS-HD Master Audio plus LCPM (up to 192 kHz). Additionally, the low profile "slim box" enclosure design make the HCE III ideal for limited space installation environments, such as behind flat panel displays and video walls.