Home Theater

HDTVs, projectors, and surround sound systems.

Scott Wilkinson on Home Theater

Scott Wilkinson

Episode 1513

HiSense came to the Eastside studios today to install a short throw projection system that puts up to 100" screen from about a foot away. Scott says it uses lasers to draw the image on the screen, and it looks really impressive, even in ambient light. The projector also comes with a sound bar and sub woofer, and the audio quality is quite good. And it should be since it costs $10,000!

Why does my TV turn on by itself?

Sony Bravia TV

Episode 1511

Vino from Las Vegas, NV

Vino recently cut the cable and is streaming YouTube TV, but he's having trouble streaming on his Sony TV on Roku. It turns on by itself. Leo says that it's likely a CEC problem, which has to do with the HDMI settings. It's basically designed to automatically turn on the TV when he turns on his Roku. It doesn't work very well on Sony. So he should go into the settings and turn off BraviaLink. That'll solve it.

Scott Wilkinson on Home Theater

Scott Wilkinson

Episode 1511

Scott likes to highlight the "home theater of the month" and this month it's a home theater in Los Angeles that is completely blacked out, with 9 speakers around you, 6 above you, and an array of sub woofers behind the projector screen. It also has recliner seats. The owner actually built an addition to his house for it, and built the system himself. He's also added three feet of sound absorption material and acoustic panels all around the room. Scott says there's less than 1db difference in sound in any seat. So there's not a bad seat in the house.

How can I stream to my TV from my phone?

Google Chromecast

Episode 1510

Dave from Hermosa Beach, CA

Dave has a mobile phone and he wants to know how he can stream to his TV from it. Leo says to get the Google Chromecast. This will allow him to pull up a video stream on his phone, and then hand it off to the Chromecast to put it on the TV. He'll need internet and Wi-Fi to make it work. If all his internet access is through his phone, then he could use a hotspot with his TV if it supports that, and then Chromecast that way. But he'll take a bandwidth hit on his phone.

Can I use the Harmony Hub Voice control with my Apple TV?

Episode 1510

Neil from Phoenix, AZ

Neil misses the WIndows Phone. Leo says that unfortunately, Apple and Android are so dominant, that Windows being a distant third with no shot of gaining any marketshare was a reason that Microsoft left the mobile phone category altogether. The same is pretty much true with Blackberry, which is now just another model of the Android OS.

What TV should I buy?

Samsung QLED TV

Episode 1509

Michael from Miami, FL

Michael is looking to get a TV and wants to know if he should get 1080p or 4K. Leo says he should definitely get 4K moving forward. But even more importantly, he should get a TV with HDR. It has a much nicer look. Leo's choice is the LG B6 OLED. It comes down to budget though. Michael wants a TV that has no bezels. He wants to hang it on the wall like a painting preferrably an 80" model. Leo says that Vizio has a nice one.

Scott Wilkinson on Home Theater

Scott Wilkinson

Episode 1509

There's a discussion going on between whether dynamic mode or movie mode is the best for TV watching. Scott says that dynamic mode doesn't show content in the manner the creator intended, while movie mode gets you a lot closer to that. Leo says he tried it for a week and it was just way too bright. It also causes a loss in detail to watch in dynamic mode and Scott says that bright spots (called blooming) will begin to appear and if you're using an OLED screen, you'll wear it out faster. Another thing that can help is a bias light behind your TV. It helps for less eye fatigue.

How could I get Google Assistant to turn on my sound bar?

Logitech Harmony Hub

Episode 1507

Noah from Grand Rapids, MI

Noah has bought a sound bar, but it won't turn on with his Google Assistant. Leo says if the sound bar isn't supported by Google, or vice versa, it won't be able to use voice activated control from the Google Assistant. He could just leave it on, but if it shuts down automatically, then that's going to be a problem. He should look to see if he can disable the eco, or power down mode.