"I really love my television
I love to sit by television
Can't live without my television
TV is king
You're my everything"
"TV is King," Remote Control, The Tubes, June 1979.
As part of moving into this townhouse, we purchased two new televisions, My friend, Tim Barrios - the first guy I know to have purchased an HDTV compatible TV way back when, is in the market for a new TV. He asked me a few questions about our TV, so I thought would turn it into a blog article. We are off this week, so I won't have much "company news."
Our family room downstairs is adjacent to our dining area. Both the family room and dinette are have large windows.
With so much light coming into the room, I worried about the picture getting washed out by the natural light. This led me to investigate the Samsung UN55B8500 which has a great contrast ratio. According to the Samsung web site:
For images that are stunningly true to life you need the 3 Cs: contrast, color and clarity. Ultra brilliant Samsung LED TVs have them all. 7,000,000:1 Mega Contrast provides an incredible range of brightness - from pure blacks to pristine whites. Advanced Color Processing enables a wider range of natural colors and provides greater depth for a vibrant, captivating picture - even with subtle colors. Plus our Auto Motion Plus 240Hz technology eliminates virtually all motion blur leaving your picture smooth and crisp - and your jaw dropped.
I purchased it at Best Buy.
I have had the TV for a few months now. Though the Tubes lyrics I quoted are an overstatement, I love it. We also bought a Samsung UN55B8000 HDTV for our bedroom which is upstairs. Through the UN55B8000 is a fine TV, and get me there is nothing wrong with it, the UN55B8500 is just better. The picture is just more stunning.
As part of buying two TVs from Best Buy at the same time, the salesman threw in two Samsung Blu-Ray players. In addition to playing standard DVDs, these players play Blu-Ray DVDs which are the HDTV equivalent of DVDs. Besides playing discs, the players can be connected to the internet. I did this by wiring one directly into my Linksys. I connected the downstairs player by purchasing a wireless adapter for the player. With either player connected to the internet, I can use a built-in user interface to connect to Blockbuster, Netflix, YouTube, and Pandora.
The remote even has color coded buttons to make navigating the user interface easy.
I have a Nextflix account so I can watch movies instantly. Using my computer I add movies to my "Watch Instantly" queue. When using my player, I select a movie from the queue, and Netflix streams it from their servers to my player which then gets displayed on my TV. This includes high definition. The picture looks great and bandwidth does not seem to be a problem.
Not all movies are available to be watched instantly. For some of the new and popular titles, Netflix members need to rent the DVD or Blu-Ray disc.
For YouTube the resolution is lower than HDTV, but it is quite convenient to be able to stay abreast of the latest viral videos without having to log on to the computer.
Pandora is a free music service based on a database. Experts listen to a piece of music, rate its characteristic like style, mood, tempo, arrangement, use of instruments, etc., and put this information into a big database. As a Pandora user, I select a seed song or artist that I like and Pandora selects music that is like my selection using the information in the database. It's like having your own personal radio station that only plays music you like.
So there you have it. Some tid bits about our TV and how we use it.
Talking about technology during the holiday season is alive in the lab.