Home Theater

HDTVs, projectors, and surround sound systems.

Scott Wilkinson and a few good movies

Scott Wilkinson

Episode 1610

This week, Scott is going to Sony Pictures to see their Crystal LED technology. It's like a giant LED TV; the size of a movie theater. It looks super cool and will get much brighter than any projected image. That means the dynamic range is incredible. He'll be watching MIB International. Scott says that there is no HDR format for any other display system other than Dolby Cinema, so it'll be interesting to see how this will compare. 

How can I roll back my Android launcher?

Samsung Note 8

Episode 1609

Jack from Stone Mountain, GA

Jack uses a Samsung Note Android phone and he used to be able to do a list view of all the running apps. But now it's changed to a tiny screenshot. How can he change it back? Leo says that Google changed the way to display it, and it's at the system level in their launcher, and so there may not be a way to roll that back. But since Jack has a Samsung phone, he can use the Samsung app called GOOD LOCK in the Samsung Store and you can change it back using the Task Changer feature.

Scott Wilkinson ... delayed

Scott Wilkinson

Episode 1608

Scott went to an Aerosmith concert and was amazed at the quality of the video projection. He also learned that if you pay enough for your ticket, you can sit on the stage, listen with a pair of in-ear monitors, and listen to either the house mix or Steven Tyler's monitor mix. You can also get a free iPod. Cost ... starting at $800. Leo says that's not surprising at all. Concert tickets are really expensive now, pricing out a lot of younger fans. 

Which Streaming Device Should I Get?

Roku

Episode 1608

Terry from Michigan

Terry wants to buy a device to cast to his home office TV. Would the Chromecast work or should he buy the FireTV Stick? Leo says that the Chromecast is a great device, but it doesn't stand on its own. He'll have to navigate to what he wants to watch on a phone and then cast to the Chromecast device. Stand-alone devices like Roku and AppleTV can act as their own independent devices. As for FireTV, Leo says it really serves as a portal to sell stuff from Amazon, so he's not much of a fan. Leo says ROKU Ultra is a better choice all the way around and will also stream in 4K.

Scott Wilkinson ... and the bad solution

Scott Wilkinson

Episode 1606

Scott Wilkinson recently did an article on how soundbars have the design flaw of using only a single HDMI port. But what if you have multiple HDMI devices you want to connect? Scott was reviewing an LG Atmos Soundbar, when he discovered the drawback. Looking around, he discovered the same problem with other soundbars as well. Leo says you can use Optical, and that makes sense. But Scott says the optical output is limited and doesn't support Dolby Atmos. The only thing that carries the Atmos bitstream is HDMI.

Which Soundbar Should I Buy?

SB46514.

Episode 1604

Rick from San Diego, CA

Rick wants to get a 77" LG OLED TV for his home theatre. His problem is that he needs a soundbar system that supports Dolby Atmos at home, and must have wireless speakers. Scott says there are a variety of soundbars that will do what Rick needs, including one he's reviewing right now from LG (the SL8YG).  You can also buy a separate surround speaker package. But it's not cheap. Cost is $850 plus $200 for the wireless surround package. Vizio also makes a wireless soundbar system with up-firing Atmos speakers: Model SB46514.

 

Scott Wilkinson ... Stick it in Your Ear

Scott Wilkinson

Episode 1604

Scott has been reviewing in-ear monitor earphones of late, and the good thing about them is that they seal the monitor in your ear so you don't have to have the volume turned up so loud. Scott recently tested a pair from 1 More, which makes mostly wired models. But this set of wireless ones is their first foray into the market and can be charged by putting them into a case. Much like AirPods. Are they good as a wired model? Scott says almost, but not quite.

QLED versus OLED, and What is Microlithography?

LG B8 65" OLED - OLED65B8PUA

Episode 1603

Tom from Harrisburg, PA

Tom purchased a new OLED TV and it brought him to do research into the average diameter of an atomic nucleus and cutting circuit lines. Tom wants to know how production facilities are able to cut circuit lines so small and address the wiring grid within so that they don't overlap one another. Leo tells Tom that the process is called Microlithography, which he explains is similar to the idea of silk screening: Painters paint on a screen of silk and then apply ink to it, and the ink goes through the part of the silk that isn't painted. It's a fascinating process.

Why Does YouTubeTV Have Much Better Image Quality Than Other Digital Broadcast Signals?

YouTubeTV

Episode 1602

Tom from Leland, NC

Tom is watching TV and he gets pixelation while streaming. When he switches to an antenna, he gets the same problem. What gives? Leo says that's due to the digital broadcast. Digital signals don't degrade gracefully. It just gets bad. And it could be a host of things from the antenna, to bandwidth, to the streaming box. Leo has a hunch it's the service that's streaming the programming to him.

How is YouTube getting such a clean signal? Leo says they may be using fiber directly from a network.