Home Theater

HDTVs, projectors, and surround sound systems.

Why can't I play music with my Echo on my stereo?

Episode 1461

Mike from Bakersfield, CA
Amazon Echo Dot

Mike is trying to connect his Echo to his Yamaha home stereo system, as well as his computer speakers. But when he starts playing it, it disconnects and plays on the Echo speaker. Leo says he'll have to set it up with the Echo app. The trick is to use the right command. He should be specific. For instance, he could tell it "Echo, play music in the living room."

Why does HDMI drop out on my AV receiver?

Episode 1461

Tom from Pasadena, CA
Samsung 4K TV

Tom is having an issue with his Samsung 4K TV. The HDMI through his AV Receiver drops and he has to reacquire it. Leo says that it all comes down to his source. There's a feature called Consumer Electronics Control (CEC) that allows a streaming box to switch his AV Receiver automatically. It's annoying and happens to Leo all the time. So he should check his source in the AV Receiver. Then he should disable CEC everywhere. Samsung calls this feature "AnyNet Plus."

Apple Launches HomePod

Episode 1461

Apple HomePod

Leo got his Apple HomePod this week and he says it's a device that suffers from an identity crisis. Apple isn't selling it as a home assistant like the Echo or Google Assistant, even though it has Siri on it. It's limited in its ability to play music, though. It's slightly better than the first generation Sonos, but not as good as a bonafide stereo system. It's just an expensive speaker for Apple Music via Airplay. It doesn't even work with Bluetooth. If you're not drinking that Kool-aid, there's no sense in buying one.

What size TV should I buy?

Episode 1460

John from Notre Dame, IN
Vizio P Series

John is looking at his 43" screen and thinking it's way too small. How large should he get for his next one? Leo says that 43" is way too small to get an immersive experience. Sitting at 8-10 feet away, he'll want to get the largest screen that he can afford. He should check out the RTings size calculator here. There's also the "spousal acceptance factor" to keep that in mind. John should at least have a 55-60" screen.

Day Before Big Game Is the Biggest TV Buying Day of the Year

Episode 1460

LG B7A OLED

The day before the Super Bowl is the biggest TV buying day of the year — even bigger than Black Friday. That's because it's also the end of the model year and they want to clear out the old models to make room for the new models. Leo says that there are some times you want to wait for the latest and greatest, but right now is not that time. LCD and OLED TVs are still dominant and will be for a few more years until MicroLEDs take hold. So if you were waiting, don't! If you have an HD TV and wonder if you should buy 4K, now is the time because of HDR 4K TVs.