Home Theater

HDTVs, projectors, and surround sound systems.

How Can I Get the Company, Dish, To Stop Charging Me To Use My Own Hardware?

Dish Company

Episode 1763

Jerry from Hatfield, PA

Jerry complained to the FCC about having to pay to use his own satellite equipment. A few days later, he got a call from Dish, assuring him that he's being charged half because he is a preferred customer. And they explained that it's not the equipment, it that he's using a DVR inside the equipment. And they see them separate. Leo says it sounds like DISH is exploiting a loophole. The trick is to make complaints en masse.

What's the Best TV Out There: LCD or OLED?

TV

Episode 1761

Tom from Warren, OH

Tom is wondering if there's a new TV technology coming out. Leo says that there are two kinds of TVs right now, LCD/LED and OLED. LCD has different flavors, including LED, MiniLED, QLED. But the next generation is microLED, which will be like OLED, but the LEDs are really super tiny. Samsung has a 108" model for $156,000 that is more of a technology demonstrator. But we'll be seeing them more affordably on the horizon soon. 

Can I Still Get a 3D TV?

Epson PowerLite Home Cinema 3020

Episode 1761

Mario from San Fernando, CA

Mario is looking to get a new 3D flatscreen. Leo says good luck as 3D capable flatscreens died a quick death about two years ago. RIP 3D TV!

Mario's is concerned that since his Sony Bravia 3D TV is getting older, he soon won't watch his 3D BluRays. Leo says you can still watch them in 2D though. But if you want 3D, then make sure your existing 3D TV keeps working.

One alternative, you can use the theater experience of Occulus Quest 2 and other VR headsets to watch 3D movies. 

Scott Wilkinson and the new version

Scott Wilkinson

Episode 1760

Scott joins Leo to talk about CES this year, and he says there's been a ton of news already. Leading the way is micro and mini LEDs, the latest version of LCD TV technology. Instead of hundreds or thousands of LEDs, there are now tens of thousands. And that translates to more accurate color and dynamic range. This year will be the year of mini LEDs with LG announcing the QNLED model of 4K TVs, and Samsung showcasing their NEO LED. 

Why Isn't My 4k Roku Streaming in 4k?

Roku Ultra

Episode 1759

Jose from Modesto, CA

Jose got a new 4K TV and a Roku Ultra. But the Roku Ultra is getting an error for resolution. Leo says Jose needs an HDMI 2.1 cable to support the 4K stream.  You don't need a monster cable or anything like that. Just one that's HDMI 2.1 compatible. Leo recommends MonoPrice.com. It's around $12.

But shouldn't the cable that came with the Roku be compatible? Leo says it should be. Try resetting the Ultra and see if it has the latest firmware. If the problem persists, then it's likely a bad Roku unit, and you should take it back and exchange it for another one. 

How Can I Prevent My Audio Receiver From Turning on and Off?

Denon AV Receiver

Episode 1759

David from Venice Beach, CA

David's Denon AV receiver turns on/off randomly. What's going on? Leo says that all home theater gear are computers now, and as such, they are all solid-state. As such, they're not very fixable. But it could be an intermittent power spike that is causing the AVR to turn on/off. A power conditioner could fix it by providing a steady supply of power without interruption. That's the one solution that David can try. Absent that, it's probably cheaper to buy a new AVR rather than try and repair it. Power conditioners include Trip Lite, APCC.

Apple's New High End AirPod Headphones

AirPods Max

Episode 1758

Leo says that Apple's new $550 Airpod Max Headphones are too cheap for high-end headphones, and too expensive for just about everything else. But he says that while these fit into a gray area that's going to use computational audio driven by 10 core processors. So customers have a supercomputer in each ear. It will support things like surround sound and will take an imperfect stream of audio and make it better. But Leo will never buy them, even though while they are pricey status symbols now, they may end up being worth the price down the line as the technology improves. 

 

Scott Wilkinson and the Excited Technology

Scott Wilkinson

Episode 1758

Scott joins Leo to talk about Mini and Micro LED TVs, and they are very exciting. Micro LEDs are really small so they offer more detail and sharper resolution. But they are very expensive right now. But the good news is, that LG's next-generation high-end LCD TVs will be using mini LEDs (called QNED). Scott also thinks that all LCD TV companies will rapidly follow suit. Once the technology becomes more widespread, the price will drop. And in about 5 years, the next big thing will be MicroLED as the technology gets even smaller.

How Can My TV Suddenly Show My Photos as a Screensaver?

LCD TV

Episode 1756

Ron from Riverside, CA

Ron has a TV that is an "Amazon Edition." Recently, it started showcasing his photos as a screensaver.  Leo says it may be showing your photos that are backed up to Amazon Photos. Or maybe even your Google Photos. If you're an Alexa user, it may be a skill that Amazon recently added. Can he opt-out? Leo says you can probably disable it in your TV's menu settings. Or it could be in the Amazon App. It could also be the Roku. There are apps in the Roku that picks up your photos. There's a slideshow setting in Roku that could be enabled.