home theater

How can I connect my home theater to my TV?

Michael from Monrovia, CA

Episode 1179

Michael bought a home theater in a box, a Panasonic A/V receiver, and a 55" Samsung TV. He has Dish TV service. He's having issues hooking everything up, though.

Leo says that everything should go through the Panasonic A/V receiver. He needs to connect the components like the blu-ray player with HDMI cables to the HDMI input on the Panasonic receiver. Then there should be one HDMI output on the receiver, and that will go to the HDMI In on the TV. If he connects the receiver to HDMI 1 on the TV, then the TV should stay on HDMI 1 all the time.

Scott Wilkinson

Episode 1179

Scott returns from NAB this week, after spending a week walking the halls and seeing the latest in broadcast and film technology. Leo says that it's become more and more about that, rather than the inside technology of engineers. There's a lot more focus on streaming media. Scott agrees, and says that TWiT is ahead of that curve, blazing the trail. Scott says he likes to go to NAB because seeing what broadcasters are working on points the way to what consumers will go with. And 4K was everywhere.

Scott Wilkinson

Episode 1175

Scott Wilkinson

This week's question comes from Phil, who is an audiophile. He bought a Pono Player and he's not impressed by the high resolution tracks, which are more expensive at $8-18 a CD. He only found them marginally better than ripped CDs saved at FLAC. Leo says that's interesting. It's only slightly more expensive in his opinion and Phil can tell the difference.

Scott Wilkinson

Episode 1169

Scott Wilkinson

Scott went to a three day audio engineering conference about the future of audio entertainment. Scott says that there's a ton of news in the audio world, including the adoption of multiple subwoofers in the home, which offers the smoothing out of the bass response. Other advancements including dubbing with new bass techniques, and other details which should make the home theater experience more like the movies.

Scott Wilkinson

Episode 1165

Scott wants to chime in on Net Neutrality since it does affect Home Theater Geeks who rely on streaming video. If there had been tiered access, it could affect our entertainment options. Leo says that there hasn't really been a prime example of this, save Comcast and Verizon shaking down Netflix for "interconnect." But that's a prime example of what Scott calls "paid prioritization." And this Net Neutrality decision should stop that. But internet service providers are going to sue against the new rules as well. So it's not over yet.

Scott Wilkinson

Episode 1163

Scott got an email from a viewer that wants to hold viewing parties. He wants to create a 150' screen, but the problem is that the room he uses has windows. How can he black them out? Leo suggests curtains. Scott agrees and says that Black Out shades are even better. Fixed and custom made inserts that will black out those windows when you insert them into the Window frame. That's the best idea. Scott also recommends the Epson 5030UB projector $2300, and there's Elite Screen's 150" with Cinegrade 5D screen material. Leo also recommends screens from MonoPrice.com. They're very affordable.

Why do I keep burning out A/V receivers?

Episode 1159

John from Moorpark, CA
APC UPS

John has to replace his A/V receiver. He's lost two in the last few months. Leo says that sounds like an indication of "brown power" that's surging or spiking. Scott agrees, and says a power conditioner would be a good thing to get. It's not cheap, but it could help. Scott also says that if speakers are designed to use a specific receiver and he tries to plug them into a different one, it could strain the receiver more than it should.