Insider #152 - The Family NAS

Housewide Storage -- Better Safe than Sorry But…

Invisible In-Wall Speakers

Stealth Acoustics has released the LinearResponsetm (LR) Series of invisible in-wall or in-ceiling speakers. The new models include the LR3, LR6, LR8 and SLR8. They maintain the same basic model alignments of the previous FX and AX lines, only with dramatically enhanced sonic performance.

Is Your Home Theater Setup Ruining Your Movie Experience?

It's always exciting for audio/video enthusiasts and novices alike when their new speakers, big flat-screen TV, A/V receiver and other components arrive at the front door, ready to be unboxed and set up for the first movie viewing and home theater experience.

Logitech Revue vs. Netgear Roku

As I alluded to in my last article entitled "3 Reasons why Home Technology Integration is about to Ignite", Streaming Media is the number one reason that I predict a drastic shift spanning the next few years. 

Pre-Wire Your New Home: Chapter 9: Whole-Home Video

This is the ninth and final chapter of a multi-part series covering all aspects of low voltage wiring in the home: entertainment, security, automation, and future planning.

Roll On Projection Screens

Screen Goo is a line of specially formatted  acrylic paint products designed specifically for video projection applications. It allows anyone to transform a wide variety of paintable substrates into high performance front, rear and 3D projection screens.

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.

The Future of Home Control and Automation

We all just want simple, convenient, reliable access to our equipment - and no one wants a dozen remotes on their coffee table. With a home control system, you can consolidate all those remotes and reduce wall clutter too.

To Internet Or Not To Internet

The bottom line? While the Internet is an amazingly useful tool, it is not appropriate for every application - in spite of the efforts being made to tout it as such. Basic understanding of the limitations involved will help educated consumers make purchasing decisions that reflect their needs regardless of current techo-fashion trends or external market pressures.

Wall Mounting: A Solution to LCD/LED TV Viewing Angle Issues

Despite major advances in technology, viewing angle remains a serious challenge for LCD and LED TVs. This paper will examine research on LCD viewing angle issues and show how full-motion and tilting wall mounts can alleviate this issue and help consumers get the most out of their television investment.

Major Broadcasters Band Together And File A Lawsuit Against Online Video Startup Ivi.

The major broadcasters usually can’t agree on much, but they’ve agreed to band together and file a lawsuit against Ivi , claiming that the online video startup is infringing copyrights. The suit, filed in the Southern District of New York yesterday, aims to shut down Ivi’s video service, which retransmits over-the-air broadcast signals online .  Ivi’s system works by relaying live TV feeds from more than 40 broadcasters — including ABC, CBS, Fox, NBC and Telemundo — to online viewers. It claims to be operating under a legal loophole which says that cable and satellite companies can legally retransmit over-the-air broadcast content as long as they pay semi-annual fees to the U.S. Copyright Office. The startup says it has already applied to pay those fees, which are later distributed to rights holders.  It should come as little surprise that the broadcasters disagree with Ivi’s reading of the law, and have pressured it with cease and desist letters, calling for the startup to take down the online video service. That prompted Ivi to file a preemptive lawsuit against certain broadcasters last week.

Hulu Plus coming to Roku, TiVo Premiere

Roku today confirmed the murmurings of yesterday that Hulu Plus is coming to its trio of set-top boxes. Starting "later this fall," the $9.99-per-month service that brings on-demand movies and TV shows from NBC, Fox, ABC, and others will be available.  There is no extra fee beyond the standard Hulu Plus subscription.  This is, of course, not the only way to get Hulu on your TV: Samsung, Sony, and Vizio TVs and Blu-ray players, as well as the Xbox and PlayStation 3 will feed Hulu Plus to your TV screen, but those require a much larger purchase. Roku comes in three options now, ranging from $59 to $99. (And Roku takes about six minutes to set up.) It's also an interesting option compared with the new Apple TV. Apple rejiggered its set-top offering to feature a rental-only service for content, including 99-cent TV shows. But for those who prefer a flat fee from Hulu versus paying for every show, Roku is making itself an intriguing alternative.  Not to be outdone, TiVo issued its own announcement minutes after Roku's. Hulu Plus will also be coming to TiVo Premiere "in the coming months." It's the same deal, subscribers who pay $9.99 a month for Hulu Plus can add it to their TiVo Premiere box for free.

Bose VideoWave: 46-inch HDTV + integrated invisible speaker system = $5,349

Bose is known for squeezing big sound out of little speakers, often for a lot of money. It may have created the ultimate version of that formula in the new VideoWave Entertainment System, which combines an HDTV with virtual surround sound speakers built into the bezel and a single console that routes video from your set-top box, Blu-ray player, and game console to the set. The VideoWave has a 46-inch 1080p LCD as its foundation, and Bose then somehow manages to fit 16 speakers into the surrounding frame, including six woofers, which are automatically calibrated for your room via Bose’s Adaptiq system. It also comes with a click pad remote that has a few buttons to cover basics like volume or channel control, but then touching the pad lets you control devices via an on-screen display that surrounds the image. The console houses four HDMI inputs, a pair of component-video ports, a USB port, and the inevitable iPod dock.

RocketGUI Announces "Home Pilot" iPad based Whole-Home Control Solution

RocketGUI, LLC announced their new iPad solution designed for the mid- to high-end residential control system market. The new iPad software, named Home Pilot™, is unique because it doesn’t rely on a separate processor-based controller like other whole-home control system solutions. Instead, the control intelligence is integrated into the Home Pilot application itself providing the reliability of built-in control redundancy in multi-interface systems, plus an extremely powerful, fluid and engaging user experience.  Home Pilot can be installed on as many iPad’s as desired to provide convenient access to controls and information anywhere in the home.  Intuitive “home-base” style navigation makes for familiar control requiring little or no training to operate.  Home Pilot controls HVAC, lighting, shades, home security, audio sources like CD changers, music servers, and streaming music clients, and video sources such as Blu-ray players, DVD changers, video servers and streaming video clients. Home Pilot also manages whole house audio and video routing and distribution and more from an intuitive, unified interface.

ivi, Inc., Empowers Consumers to Cut-the-Cord and Turn On ivi TV - Live TV Online

ivi TV™ is making it easier than ever for consumers to cut-the-cord and free themselves from paying high cable bills for access to live television content. In an ever-increasing new consumer trend, they can now easily access popular TV programming by downloading ivi TV’s app from its website. The online cable system’s app transforms nearly any internet-connected device into a “TV” allowing the user to watch live TV anytime, anywhere.  At $4.99 a month for all major network programming, it is significantly cheaper than cable TV bills, which average $71.00 a month. As cable TV bundle pricing goes the way of the landline telephone business, ivi TV now delivers what consumers have been waiting for since the dawn of the Internet boom – live television over the Internet, without buffering or other issues often experienced at video on demand (VOD) sites, like YouTube.

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