Home Entertainment - Tech Talk http://www.hemagazine.com/taxonomy/term/7/0 en Five Things to Know About Lighting Control http://www.hemagazine.com/node/22709 <p style="font-size: 140%"><strong>Lighting control is more than just a light switch.</strong></p> <p><img style="float: right" src="http://www.electronichouse.com/images/uploads/5thingsaboutlighting.jpg" alt="5 Things to Know About Lighting" hspace="10" vspace="5" width="200" /></p> <p>First off, unless you’ve been exposed to advanced lighting control at a friend’s house or in a dealer’s showroom, you probably don’t even know what the term refers to. For most people, <a href="http://www.lutron.com/Products/StandAloneControls/Dimmers-Switches/Pages/DimmersSwitches.aspx">lighting control</a> consists of on/off switches and dimmers, placed at the entrances to rooms or on lamps. The truth is, lighting control can be a whole lot more than that. We’ve rounded up the top five things people don’t know, but should, about lighting control (and we’ve thrown in a bonus item too).</p> <p><a href="http://www.hemagazine.com/node/22709">read more</a></p> http://www.hemagazine.com/node/22709#comments Tech Talk Fri, 17 Jun 2011 14:06:32 -0700 Administrator 22709 at http://www.hemagazine.com From the “Soon To Be Related to Home Entertainment” Department http://www.hemagazine.com/node/22585 <div style="text-align: justify">Later this year, Hewlett-Packard researchers say, they expect to deliver to the U.S. Army a working prototype of what they're calling a &quot;Dick Tracy wristwatch&quot; - a lightweight, wearable device that soldiers in the field can use to view digital maps and other data on a flexible plastic screen that won't shatter or crack like glass. The device will be able to run on the power from a small, flexible solar panel that can be part of the wristband. Researchers say HP's prototype could be one of the first in a new wave of products incorporating flexible electronic displays that can roll up like a newspaper. Can you say &quot;magic disappearing home theater screen&quot;?</div> <div style="text-align: justify"> </div> <p style="text-align: justify">&quot;You can start thinking about putting electronic displays on things where you wouldn't ordinarily think of having them,&quot; said Nick Colaneri, a scientist and director of the Flexible Display Center at Arizona State University. Flexible plastic displays may be developed to provide tablets, smartphones and other portable computers with big screens that weigh less and are far more durable than today's models, said Carl Taussig, director of advanced display research at HP Labs in Palo Alto. Taussig's team is working with plastic film that is both lighter and thinner than glass, and which can be stored in rolls. Their method resembles the way newspapers are printed from giant spools of paper. The display requires little power because it has no backlighting and uses electricity only to create a new page.</p> <p><a href="http://www.hemagazine.com/node/22585">read more</a></p> http://www.hemagazine.com/node/22585#comments Tech Talk News Thu, 24 Feb 2011 07:06:24 -0800 MarkE 22585 at http://www.hemagazine.com Denon Announces Major Hardware and Firmware Upgrade http://www.hemagazine.com/node/22577 <p><strong>3D<sup class="glossary-indicator" title="3D, so much more than 2D. 50% more, really..."><a href="/taxonomy/term/68" title="3D, so much more than 2D. 50% more, really..." class="glossary-indicator">i</a></sup> Pass-Through, Audyssey and Dolby Upgrades Added</strong></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <div style="text-align: justify">Denon Electronics is offering owners of its flagship AVR-5308CI A/V receiver and AVP-A1HDCI MultiMedia preamplifier a major hardware and firmware upgrade that will provide full 3D pass-through capability, as well as Audyssey MultEQ XT32, Audyssey DSX and Dolby PLIIz.</div> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p style="text-align: justify">&quot;We are very excited to bring these leading-edge features to owners of our flagship products, noted Jeff Talmadge, Director, Product Development &amp; Systems Integration, Denon Electronics. &quot;Early adopters who purchased these components nearly 4 years ago bought them with the confidence that they would experience the very best home entertainment for years to come. This upgrade opportunity is yet another example of how Denon is committed to ensuring that our customers are ‘future ready' and remain at the leading edge of all the latest performance-enhancing technologies.&quot;</p> <p><a href="http://www.hemagazine.com/node/22577">read more</a></p> http://www.hemagazine.com/node/22577#comments Tech Talk News Other Audio Gear Pre-amps &amp; Processors Receivers Tue, 22 Feb 2011 16:22:26 -0800 MarkE 22577 at http://www.hemagazine.com SurgeX Protects Premium 240V Components http://www.hemagazine.com/node/22569 <div style="text-align: justify">SurgeX, of Zebulon, N.C., manufacturer of AC power products that combine surge elimination with power conditioning, has unveiled its XN240, the only 240 Volt NEMA surge elimination product on the market as of this writing. The XN240 is designed to protect larger products, projectors and video display panels that require 240V service. The XN240 unit, housed in a NEMA box, is hardwired as an in-wall subpanel at the service entrance or the equipment room, offering a solution for AV systems where rack space is at a premium.</div> <div style="text-align: justify"> </div> <div style="text-align: justify">According to Surgex, there are currently no other solutions for sensitive 240V gear currently on the market, meaning that these expensive devices are left without required protection. When the panel/projector is connected to an outlet fed through the XN240, the SurgeX unit will protect and condition the AV component from the branch circuit. </div> <div style="text-align: justify">  </div> <p><a href="http://www.hemagazine.com/node/22569">read more</a></p> http://www.hemagazine.com/node/22569#comments Tech Talk Hot Products News Sun, 20 Feb 2011 13:49:38 -0800 MarkE 22569 at http://www.hemagazine.com How to Select Your Installer Part 1 http://www.hemagazine.com/node/22561 <div style="text-align: justify">The custom installation industry was born out of real needs. The technologies and advancements show no sign of abating. Custom installers have seen periods akin to the Gold Rush as well as volatile times, which have reflected the economy's severe downturns. Stalwart, long-term integrators have disappeared while a plethora of new ones have emerged. Presuming you don't own a tool belt and have no real installation experience (programming your phone doesn't count), you will need the expertise of a good custom installer. See the Checklist below to help you make the best selection.</div> <p><a href="http://www.hemagazine.com/node/22561">read more</a></p> http://www.hemagazine.com/node/22561#comments Tech Talk Whole Home/Custom Install News Wed, 16 Feb 2011 12:11:25 -0800 MarkE 22561 at http://www.hemagazine.com Tributaries® New HDMI Cables Perform Over Long Distance http://www.hemagazine.com/node/22530 <div style="text-align: justify">As a consumer, you might not be aware of the critical role cables play in your system, especially when sending HD signal over significant distance. Consider your cables as the final components, responsible for preserving pristine signal quality. In that light, it's big news that Tributaries® has unveiled its new line of cables - HEC HDMI with Ethernet The new models conform to the performance requirements consistent with all the new HDMI v1.4 upgrades. Additional improvements on the connectors and the cables provide easier installation and improved signal transfer over long distances. The new HEC cable has one extra conductor in the number 14-pin position, previously unused on the HDMI connector for the dedicated Ethernet Channel.</div> <p><a href="http://www.hemagazine.com/node/22530">read more</a></p> http://www.hemagazine.com/node/22530#comments Tech Talk Hot Products News Other Video Gear Video Talk Tue, 08 Feb 2011 12:49:43 -0800 MarkE 22530 at http://www.hemagazine.com LALED Releases First LED Lamps Compatible With All Lighting Automation Systems http://www.hemagazine.com/node/22490 <div style="text-align: justify">Manufacturer LALED of Lafayette, LA, has introduced its built-in dimming circuitry allowing for simple integration into any lighting system. LALEDʼs dimming circuitry is built into each LED lamp allowing for simple screw-in installation without the inconvenience of blinking lights found in competitors' similar LED recessed lights. There is also no need to rewire the house for external LED drivers. LALEDʼs drivers are compatible with all digital dimmers and automation systems on the market and are among the first to function as a stand alone dimming light with digital dimmers such as Lutron Radio RA, Maestro, Crestron Lux, Crestron InfiNET, Vantage, Leviton, and many more. Most digital dimmers are unable to handle LED lighting and malfunction when LEDs are its only load.</div> <p style="text-align: justify">LALED has 40% of its manufacturing in Houston and will continue to move up to 80% of its manufacturing to the United States over the next two years. Now, if the manufacturing plant was located in LA (Los Angeles, not Louisiana) we could ask the perennial question: &quot;How many Californians does it take to change a light bulb?&quot; Answer - First, they have to want to change....</p> <div style="text-align: justify">To learn more, <a href="http://www.laledus.com/L2/L2.html" target="_blank">click here</a>:</div> <div style="text-align: justify"> </div> <p><a href="http://www.hemagazine.com/node/22490">read more</a></p> http://www.hemagazine.com/node/22490#comments Tech Talk Hot Products News Whole Home/Custom Install News Sun, 30 Jan 2011 17:18:35 -0800 MarkE 22490 at http://www.hemagazine.com What’s Next After 3D? Appear in Your Own Movie http://www.hemagazine.com/node/22455 <div style="text-align: justify">If you guessed &quot;4D&quot; to the question above, you might not be far off. Companies like <a href="http://phasespace.com/" target="_blank">Phase Space</a> are working on a technology, which allows actors to wear sensor suites and translate their actions, real time, into animated characters. To do this level of work for commercials and movies - a la &quot;Avatar&quot; - typically costs between $1,000 and $10,000 a second. PhaseSpace's solution costs about $10 a second. Says author, Rob Enderle: &quot;While in its beginning stages, the concept of people being able to enter the movies they watch, or eventually being able to create 3D<sup class="glossary-indicator" title="3D, so much more than 2D. 50% more, really..."><a href="/taxonomy/term/68" title="3D, so much more than 2D. 50% more, really..." class="glossary-indicator">i</a></sup> movies could dramatically alter both what we watched and how we interacted with it. This technology may be applied to gaming via a head-mounted controller and voice-alteration.&quot; Imagine &quot;virtual cameras&quot; which allow the director to walk around, look at the tablet, and see into the movie world from all angles, making for intriguing participatory experiences.</div> <p style="text-align: justify">&nbsp;</p> <p style="text-align: justify"><strong>The Next Big Thing: Crowd Sourced Movies and Immersive HD Games</strong></p> <p style="text-align: justify">According to Enderle, it isn't hard to imagine that an immersive game, properly cut and directed, couldn't actually be an interesting movie. When you combine the ability to immediately translate real actors into high-definition, animated, photo-realistic characters, in realistic, real-time-rendered environments, and view them all in real time, you have the potential to bend gaming and movies in a way that we may not be able to tell the difference.</p> <p style="text-align: justify">&nbsp;</p> <div style="text-align: justify">To watch a sample, <a href="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5abFhBa2TyU" target="_blank">click here:</a> </div> <div style="text-align: justify"> </div> <div style="text-align: justify"> </div> <div style="text-align: justify">To read the complete article by Rob Enderle, <a href="http://www.digitaltrends.com/talk-backs/whats-the-next-big-thing-in-entertainment-after-3d/" target="_blank">click here</a>:</div> <div style="text-align: justify"> </div> <div style="text-align: justify"><img src="/files/u1784/After_3D.jpg" alt="" hspace="50" width="500" height="211" /></div> <p><a href="http://www.hemagazine.com/node/22455">read more</a></p> http://www.hemagazine.com/node/22455#comments Movies/Music/Games Tech Talk Gaming Hardware News Tue, 25 Jan 2011 10:57:24 -0800 MarkE 22455 at http://www.hemagazine.com Bye Bye Battery http://www.hemagazine.com/node/22415 <div style="text-align: justify">Did you ever dream you could dump your batteries and pull electricity from the air? Electrical engineering researcher Paul Theilmann is working on power-scavenging &quot;freegan&quot; sensors to collect unused radio frequency energy from the air and use it instead of batteries.</div> <p style="text-align: justify">His first foray is into environments where batteries are hard to replace and directed, radio-frequency energy is difficult to deliver. Cell phone towers and radio transmitters emit plenty of unused energy but collecting it is tricky. Theilmann's work enables his sensors to run on weaker, wireless signals. One of his innovations is a rectifier that converts wireless energy to direct current (DC).</p> <p><a href="http://www.hemagazine.com/node/22415">read more</a></p> http://www.hemagazine.com/node/22415#comments Tech Talk News Tue, 18 Jan 2011 11:21:01 -0800 MarkE 22415 at http://www.hemagazine.com High-Quality Video Streaming in Congested Networks http://www.hemagazine.com/node/22405 <div style="text-align: justify">According to members of IEEE (Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers) and staff at Princeton University, ever-increasing video programs-all of which compete within limited Internet bandwidth-are deteriorating the quality of the video. This is something every computer user has encountered.</div> <p style="text-align: justify">One of the solutions proposed is &quot;Content-Aware Distortion-Fair (CAF). This algorithm allocates available bandwidth during periods of high congestion by applying a frame-drop distortion metric, which maximizes video playback. When sharing resources-such as bandwidth, the video clips can help each other to get a fair quality-of-service or less-perceived distortion (i.e., lazy sequence helps out busy sequence). </p> <p style="text-align: justify">The Streaming Media Systems Group, a collaboration between Hewlett-Packard Labs and Stanford University, is also working on an advance in streaming technology called &quot;Rate-Distortion Optimized&quot; (RaDiO). The goal: to maximize video quality at the receiver end while overcoming frame loss and buffering delays. </p> <p> To read the Princeton White Paper, <a href="http://www.princeton.edu/~chiangm/caf.pdf" target="_blank">click here and bring your calculator:</a> </p> <p><a href="http://www.hemagazine.com/node/22405">read more</a></p> http://www.hemagazine.com/node/22405#comments Tech Talk News Mon, 17 Jan 2011 08:56:10 -0800 MarkE 22405 at http://www.hemagazine.com And In a Related Story: We’re a Bandwidth-Hungry Nation http://www.hemagazine.com/node/22403 <div style="text-align: justify">The White House has joined forces with the FCC to free up 500MHz of bandwidth for wireless applications. Federal estimates project that future wireless data flow will increase between 20 and 45 times the total bandwidth used in 2009. &quot;Spectrum crunch&quot; fears are fueling the drive to survey spectrum inventory in order to determine how much could be shared or resold.</div> <div style="text-align: justify"> </div> <div style="text-align: justify">The challenge is to convince television broadcasters to either sell some of their 120MHz back to the government or share it with wireless companies. Referring to HR3125, &quot;The Spectrum Inventory Act&quot; originated and passed in the House of Representatives and S649, recently approved by the Senate Commerce Committee, National Association of Broadcasters Executive Vice President Dennis Wharton said: &quot;We believe the first priority of Congress ought to be passage of spectrum inventory legislation that identifies fallow spectrum or companies that may be 'warehousing' the airwaves.&quot;. To read more,<a href="http://arstechnica.com/tech-policy/news/2010/06/white-house-backs-fcc-plan-to-free-spectrum-for-wireless-broadband.ars" target="_blank">go to:</a></div> <p style="text-align: justify"> <p><a href="http://www.hemagazine.com/node/22403">read more</a></p> http://www.hemagazine.com/node/22403#comments Tech Talk News Mon, 17 Jan 2011 08:50:13 -0800 MarkE 22403 at http://www.hemagazine.com Tech Support Follies http://www.hemagazine.com/node/22392 <div style="text-align: justify"><strong>Has your Blackberry run out of juice? Is it frozen? Are you having a problem installing your dongle? Does booting your Apple make it crash or mess up your Windows? Would you buy an Eggs Box ($3.60)? If you answered &quot;yes&quot; to any of the questions above, </strong><a href="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kAG39jKi0lI" target="_blank">click here for a short instructional video.</a></div> <p><a href="http://www.hemagazine.com/node/22392">read more</a></p> http://www.hemagazine.com/node/22392#comments Tech Talk News Wed, 12 Jan 2011 10:21:20 -0800 MarkE 22392 at http://www.hemagazine.com Sensio Expands 3D Content Viewing http://www.hemagazine.com/node/22338 <div style="text-align: justify">Press releases today from Sensio Technologies, Inc. report three major announcements regarding 3D<sup class="glossary-indicator" title="3D, so much more than 2D. 50% more, really..."><a href="/taxonomy/term/68" title="3D, so much more than 2D. 50% more, really..." class="glossary-indicator">i</a></sup>. These advancements will be launched at the upcoming Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas, NV, beginning this coming Thursday, January 6, 2011.</div> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>Press Release 1:</p> <p>With the current dearth of 3D content, SENSIO has negotiated the rights to an extensive and varied library including independent movies, documentaries, and blockbusters, which it will encode in the SENSIO® Hi-Fi 3D format, to be distributed through the video-on-demand (VOD) platform of RoxioNow<sup>TM</sup>, a major player in OTT services. Manufacturers of Internet-connected devices incorporating the SENSIO® Hi-Fi 3D decoder will be able to offer viewers access to this expanding library of 3D content.</p> <p><a href="http://www.hemagazine.com/node/22338">read more</a></p> http://www.hemagazine.com/node/22338#comments Tech Talk News Other Video Gear Pre-amps &amp; Processors Video Talk Mon, 03 Jan 2011 10:30:14 -0800 MarkE 22338 at http://www.hemagazine.com Not Related to Home Entertainment but Techy: Flying Drones for Google Streetmapping? http://www.hemagazine.com/node/22305 <div style="text-align: justify">A Fortune CNN article confirms that Any Rubin, Google's VP of Engineering, has purchased at least one md4-1000 drone aircraft from Germany's Microdrones GmbH. CEO Sven Juerss has been quoted, sharing his hope to deliver dozens more unmanned drones to Google soon. The question is, what does this mean? Each small drone can house a camera, a GPS, a small computer and can fly as high as one kilometer. The article hints at the possible use of a drone fleet to supplant Google's fleet of Streetview cars for streetmapping. There is good reason for such speculation: &quot;The UAVs are well suited to provide timely recording of the map service Google Earth,&quot; says Juerss. With a range of several thousand meters and a speed of up to 80 kilometers per hour, the drones could automatically image whole neighborhoods. Then again, maybe Google will use the drones to monitor their wind farms...To read the entire speculation, <a href="http://tech.fortune.cnn.com/2010/08/09/google-buys-flying-drones/" target="_blank">click here:</a></div> <div style="text-align: justify"> </div> <p><a href="http://www.hemagazine.com/node/22305">read more</a></p> http://www.hemagazine.com/node/22305#comments Tech Talk News Mon, 27 Dec 2010 07:12:55 -0800 MarkE 22305 at http://www.hemagazine.com Still Not Related to Home Entertainment: Fly Me to the Off-Ramp http://www.hemagazine.com/node/22301 <div style="text-align: justify">At $194,000, Terrafugia's flying car-otherwise known as a &quot;roadable aircraft&quot;-aptly is named the Transition and it may be a bargain. The Transition makes its public flying debut in 2011 at the AirVenture show in Oshkosh, WI. Powered by a 100-horsepower, four-cylinder aircraft engine, the Transition is a rear-wheel drive flying car that meets all of the federal highway safety regulations for a sport-utility vehicle. It boasts a flying speed of 105 mph; one tank of gas enables the car to fly 500 miles before landing and driving to the nearest gas station for a fill-up.</div> <p>&nbsp;</p> <div style="text-align: justify">Test pilot Phil Meteer claims the four-wheel configuration makes take off and landing very predictable. &quot;I've been up to 100 mph and it's rock-solid on the ground,&quot; says Meteer. What's the tie-in to home tech, you may ask? The interior's touch panels change appearance from car-like gauges to aircraft instruments when in the air. We'd like to see some A/V options in the cabin. To read entire article,<a href="http://www.wired.com/autopia/2010/07/terrafugia-introduces-refined-flying-car-design" target="_blank"> click here:</a>
</div> <div style="text-align: justify"> </div> <p><a href="http://www.hemagazine.com/node/22301">read more</a></p> http://www.hemagazine.com/node/22301#comments Tech Talk News Mon, 27 Dec 2010 06:50:43 -0800 MarkE 22301 at http://www.hemagazine.com New Products for Sooloos http://www.hemagazine.com/Media_Source_600_Control_15_Meridian <p>&nbsp;</p> <p align="center"><strong>Meridian introduces the Media Source 600 and Sooloos Control 15</strong></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <div align="right">…More after the jump.</div> <p><strong><br /></strong></p> <p><a href="http://www.hemagazine.com/Media_Source_600_Control_15_Meridian">read more</a></p> http://www.hemagazine.com/Media_Source_600_Control_15_Meridian#comments Tech Talk Audio News Audio Talk Fri, 20 Aug 2010 12:49:36 -0700 liz123 21852 at http://www.hemagazine.com Six Endangered Tech Species http://www.hemagazine.com/endangered_tech <p>Jason Notte’s article in <em>The Street</em>, quotes financial pundits in the tech sector, predicting the demise of certain technologies and formats based on multi-function capabilities of handheld devices. The article identifies six devices for extinction. For the record, we wouldn’t bet on all of these devices completely disappearing. Many technologies have coexisted peacefully over the years for various reasons. Still, we thought you’d find the subject stimulating. Tell us what you think.  </p> <p><a href="http://www.hemagazine.com/endangered_tech">read more</a></p> http://www.hemagazine.com/endangered_tech#comments Tech Talk Fri, 20 Aug 2010 12:39:43 -0700 liz123 21851 at http://www.hemagazine.com Google TV Causes Hollywood Jitters http://www.hemagazine.com/google_tv_entertainment <p>A recent Los Angeles Times article reports fears within the broadcast entertainment industry about Google’s plan to join the Internet with traditional television. It will be known as Google TV, and it will allow viewers to watch TV shows and movies, independent of broadcast networks or cable channels. The setup would require a TV or set-top box with Google software (scheduled for stores this fall), a connection to the Internet, and a keyboard. iPhone or Android phones will also be able to operate Google TV.</p> <p><a href="http://www.hemagazine.com/google_tv_entertainment">read more</a></p> http://www.hemagazine.com/google_tv_entertainment#comments Tech Talk News Thu, 19 Aug 2010 16:56:49 -0700 liz123 21849 at http://www.hemagazine.com Green Living, Smart Living http://www.hemagazine.com/Green_Living_Smart_Living <p><strong>Green in RI</strong></p> <p>As you cross the threshold of this gorgeous New England-style home overlooking Narragansett Bay in Rhode Island, the first place your mind definitely doesn’t go is toward visions of high-tech gadgetry or green living. </p> <p>But there’s something special that sets this home apart from the rest of the block.</p> <p><a href="http://www.hemagazine.com/Green_Living_Smart_Living">read more</a></p> http://www.hemagazine.com/Green_Living_Smart_Living#comments Tech Talk .eco News Automation Talk More Talk Whole Home/Custom Install News Tue, 22 Dec 2009 00:15:15 -0800 DennisB 21474 at http://www.hemagazine.com