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Old 01-04-2013, 04:01 PM   #121
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OK...
Our 40" $299 TV is now 2 years old, and we're still happy with it. Since our Roku burned up in a lightning strike, we're using a Sony Media player (goofy remote but works all right).
We have DirecTV but not High definition. As far as we're concerned, no loss. Our kids have expensive larger screens, and actually like our picture better.

Here's are some questions that tie in with a previous post... about remotes. The directv remote does work with the TV, but of course, not for the remote for the Sony Media Player. I found that I can operate the menu... (typing in search words) by attaching a remote USB keyboard to the player USB port, but have to use the Sony remote to "tab" between menus.

The Sony also allows me to use it as an internet browser. Again, though, only by "tabbing" through the Sony Remote "texting"... a real nuisance. The keyboard works so well, that if there was a way to go from one menu to another, the Sony could be used as a computer from across the room.

I have had a universal remote that was supposed to "learn" codes from OE remotes, but was never able to get it to work, without jumping through hoops. I don't want to spend $200 or so on a Harmony control. Has anyone had experience with a multifuntion remote that works with either Roku or Sony... that doesn't require switching between it and the OE remote?

I have no experience with TV's that have a built in media player. Can they be operated with a remote keyboard rather than a regular remote control?

Another off the wall question... Why do HDMI cables cost so much? The ones I have that I bought on line for $1.86 (no shipping) work fine.

BTW.. I hate to get ripped off... The same 40" TV I bought for $299, is now
$269...

Ya win a few, ya lose a few.
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Old 01-04-2013, 04:13 PM   #122
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I have a Harmony remote. It's fantastic. Mine is a Harmony 720. Unfortunately they don't sell the 7-series anymore. The Harmony Touch is $80 MSRP. It looks almost as good as my 720.

HDMI cables are regularly overpriced by retail outlets typically frequently by unsophisticated buyers.
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Old 01-05-2013, 12:41 AM   #123
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Don't but HDMI cables at retail. Good ones should be about $10 for 2 or 3 meters on Amazon.

Or check monoprice.com.
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Old 01-05-2013, 04:24 AM   #124
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Amazon.com has replaced monoprice.com for me. They have some "cheaper" cables (which work fine) for $3.82 as an add-on to another order ($5.69 as a standalone order).
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Old 01-06-2013, 12:21 AM   #125
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FWIW, here's the skinny on HDMI cables. I got taken the first time many years ago, but not since (the confrontations with sales people have been fun tho... ) nor ever again.

Why all HDMI cables are the same | Crave - CNET
Why all HDMI cables are the same, part 2 | TV and Home Theater - CNET Reviews
Still more reasons why all HDMI cable are the same | TV and Home Theater - CNET Reviews

CNET Quick Guide: HDMI and HDMI cables - CNET Reviews

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Old 01-12-2013, 08:59 PM   #126
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Quite a bit off topic, and I hope the OP does not mind, but since we touched on the subject of how advanced electronics has gotten, and could knock the sock off workers in the field who left work for only a few years, I could not help mentioning this.

Per previous posts about how small chip packaging has become, I described how I was astounded when my son showed me what he worked on. The BGA chip mounting pads were so much smaller than anything I had seen.

Today, I got some numbers from him, and electronic engineers will appreciate this. The BGA I saw had a ball pitch (spacing between balls) of 140 microns, and the diameter of the balls was 100 microns. That's 5.5 mil, and 4 mil respectively (1 mil = 1 thousand of an inch). For reference, the thickness of a piece of common 8.5x11 paper is also 4 mil. The spacing between balls was 1.5mil, a fraction of a paper thickness! That's how precise the package must be positioned on a board for soldering.

The BGA packages I was familiar a few years ago had a ball pitch of 0.5mm or 500 microns, so would look huge compared to what my son was working on.

What was also peculiar was that the balls were not populated over all the grid positions, but sparsely populated at seemingly random spots. The package was obviously for a proprietary and unique chip for a special application. It was way too small and expensive to go into something like a TV. I am certain it was for a small state-of-the-art handheld gadget like a smartphone.
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Old 01-12-2013, 09:55 PM   #127
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It's me again with a dumb question. I have an LG HD TV I bought 3 years ago that I would like to interface with my computer, basically to be able to run Netflix, youtube videos etc. I have a wireless router(2Wire provided by at&t) that enable me to move my notebook close to the TV so I can connect HDMI cables and run Netflix that way. Not that big of a problem but wouldn't mind being able to just run Netflix on my TV with a remote and not have to plug in directly to TV.

Will something like the device in the link below be a way to do the job? It gets mixed reviews so not sure it is the best way to go. And is it best to go with an LG branded device since I have an LG TV?

I'm out of touch with tech stuff so forgive my dumb questions.

LG ST600: Smart Tv Upgrader With Web Browsing | LG USA
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Old 01-12-2013, 10:12 PM   #128
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I do not know about the features of the box, but with your TV also being LG, the advantage I see is that the box remote very likely allows you to control the TV for added convenience.

As described earlier, I bought a Sony Blu-ray player that has the Web function. The brand of my TV is not among the list that the Blu-ray remote can be programmed to control. So, I must use the TV remote for volume control in addition to the blu-ray player remote when watching the Web.

PS. Oops. Just clicked and looked at photo of that box remote. No volume control, nor channel selection or anything. About as useful to control the TV as my Sony Blu-ray remote.
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Old 01-13-2013, 06:20 AM   #129
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Maybe you mean something like this.

Roku Box | Roku Streaming Player

Also:
Apple TV - Buy the New Apple TV with 1080p HD - Apple Store (U.S.)

You can hook either of them to a TV with an HDMI imput and watch Netflix.
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Old 01-13-2013, 07:41 AM   #130
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dawg52 View Post
It's me again with a dumb question. I have an LG HD TV I bought 3 years ago that I would like to interface with my computer, basically to be able to run Netflix, youtube videos etc. I have a wireless router(2Wire provided by at&t) that enable me to move my notebook close to the TV so I can connect HDMI cables and run Netflix that way. Not that big of a problem but wouldn't mind being able to just run Netflix on my TV with a remote and not have to plug in directly to TV.

Will something like the device in the link below be a way to do the job? It gets mixed reviews so not sure it is the best way to go. And is it best to go with an LG branded device since I have an LG TV?

I'm out of touch with tech stuff so forgive my dumb questions.

LG ST600: Smart Tv Upgrader With Web Browsing | LG USA
I think you want an AppleTV or a Roku box. They're only $100. I know the AppleTV can work off an in-house wifi or a direct Ethernet connection to the Internet, then you hook it up to the TV via HDMI. Works great for Netflix, Huluplus, YouTube, renting movies. And if you connect it to your stereo you can listen to all your iTunes music.

No need to get your notebook involved!
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Old 01-13-2013, 01:47 PM   #131
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Originally Posted by NW-Bound View Post
Quite a bit off topic, and I hope the OP does not mind,
Not at all; threads drift. But like probably 80% of the topics discussed on FIRE, I only wish I understood a fraction of what folks are talking about!

We got a sound bar for the new TV, and the sound is awesome (for a sound bar) -- even the fake surround sound -- but now we're struggling with 4 remotes (one a 'credit card' type that doesn't look/feel like it will last very long), trying to figure out which ones we can eliminate via programming (and finding current codes -- the cable remote codes are years out of date) and how to do whatever we need to do to be able to use headphones...

The fun never stops...

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Old 01-13-2013, 01:53 PM   #132
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Since we're talking about streaming...I have a couple of Sony Blu-Ray players that also stream and do a fine job of delivering NetFlix and Amazon Prime Video content. Both are great services. Within the last year, Amazon has done a great job catching up with NetFlix in both content and interface. Add in Redbox for new movies out on DVD and I have more choices than time to watch them.
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Old 01-13-2013, 02:48 PM   #133
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dawg52 View Post
It's me again with a dumb question. I have an LG HD TV I bought 3 years ago that I would like to interface with my computer, basically to be able to run Netflix, youtube videos etc. I have a wireless router(2Wire provided by at&t) that enable me to move my notebook close to the TV so I can connect HDMI cables and run Netflix that way. Not that big of a problem but wouldn't mind being able to just run Netflix on my TV with a remote and not have to plug in directly to TV.

Will something like the device in the link below be a way to do the job? It gets mixed reviews so not sure it is the best way to go. And is it best to go with an LG branded device since I have an LG TV?

I'm out of touch with tech stuff so forgive my dumb questions.

LG ST600: Smart Tv Upgrader With Web Browsing | LG USA
The LG looks to be a media player, like Roku, Sony, and a dozen more like that. Basically used to access the dozens of online TV providers, like HULU, Netflix, Amazon Crackle etc...
They all work fairly well, except that they use the remote to access the menu(s), and that is the problem... Not easy. Look in this thread post #121, where I was asking if anyone knew of a way to use a better remote, to be able to use more function, (ala a mouse) The USB post on the media player will connect to a wireless keyboard, and it makes searching easier, but there is no way to "tab" inside the main menu.

My laptop has an svideo connection which I connect to the TV... It works well, and allow me to use the computer to search for movies, but the TV Picture isn't so good.

My Sony media player $39.95 has a built in browser, so I can get to the internet without a computer. Problem again is that although I can use a remote keyboard, there is no way to use a mouse. My post was in hopes that someone had an answer, but had no replies. Haven't found an online answer either... Seems to be a no brainer, but what do I know?
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Old 01-13-2013, 02:55 PM   #134
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I took a look at a Roku box and it looks like I may not have the internet speed to do the job. I currently have At&t dsl lite service. On the details of the Roku it says "High-speed Internet service with a speed of at least 1.2 Mbps (such as mid-level DSL). For HD video, 5 Mbps is recommended". Funny, I get Netflix just fine using my at&t wifi box with notebook hooked to tv screen. BTW, last time I had a att guy here he said faster dsl services from them do not work well in my neighborhood for some reason. He's had to get customers to switch to what I have.

I don't know enough about all this stuff to be buying and hoping it will work. I will probably try to find someone to come in and give me a hand before buying anything.

Thanks for the suggestions.
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Old 01-13-2013, 03:01 PM   #135
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... now we're struggling with 4 remotes (one a 'credit card' type that doesn't look/feel like it will last very long), trying to figure out which ones we can eliminate via programming (and finding current codes -- the cable remote codes are years out of date) and how to do whatever we need to do to be able to use headphones...
Remember Steve Wozniak, the cofounder of Apple? If I remember correctly, after leaving Apple, he started a company to make a remote that was supposed to be "Mother of all remotes". That was a very long time ago even. What has happened to it, and why there's nothing like it on the market?

Is it a worthwhile idea for some entrepreneurs to pursue if they get bored in ER?
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Old 01-13-2013, 03:21 PM   #136
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I'm not sure I understand the problem. My Harmony 720 is over six years old and does everything that anyone would want a "Mother of all remotes" to do.
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Old 01-13-2013, 03:28 PM   #137
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Perhaps the problem is simply that I do not own a Harmony 720!
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Old 01-13-2013, 03:32 PM   #138
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Harmony does solve myriad problems!

Seriously... Don't buy the best Harmony. The best Harmony isn't what most of us really want. It seems snazzy to have a big screen and all this high tech, but most of us want just a remote that happens to do everything that needs doing. If I was buying a new Harmony right now, I'd probably get the least expensive one for $79.99 MSRP. It is a little less capable than my 720, but unless you have more than five devices to control, I think the other Harmony's are overkill.
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Costco has great options
Old 01-13-2013, 04:56 PM   #139
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Costco has great options

We just bought a Samsung 55" led at costco (last month). $1000 off of $2500 ($1500) plus $70 for delivery and setup. It's beautiful and ultra thin & light weight. You can get them for less ... but they are thicker and heavier.

The specs. Samsung 55" Class 1080p 240Hz 3D Smart LED HDTV Bundle UN55ES7150F w/4 Pairs of Active 3D Glasses and Wireless Keyboard, Smart TV, Full Web Browser with Dual Core Processing, Samsung Active Full HD 3D.

You can get much cheaper, but we considered it a long term investment (our last one, plasma, still works at around 10 years old). We have a very bright room, and led's work better in that environment.

You'll need •HDMI®: 3 connecters (at least one for your blueray) and need to get the newest version so all the amenities work. Amazon has the best price if you buy the "amazon" brand.

good luck!
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Old 01-13-2013, 06:44 PM   #140
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FWIW, I would suggest OP simply pick up one or two of the abandoned CRT TVs that litter curb sides. You'll find one which works just fine and it will probably last another 10 years. If you are in doubt about the longevity, pick up a "back-up" CRT TV for that inevitable day (maybe only 9 years away) when you return your free TV to the curb.

I say all this because since Dec. 2007, I have purchased 4 "modern" TVs (i.e., LCD). One of them still works while the others have been placed on the curb already. The TV I bought in 1985 (a USED Sony) still works.

Now, it's true that modern TVs give a better picture, but I submit that most of the available channels are not worth watching anyway. While strictly a personal opinion, the only folks I know who openly disagree with me are the sports "nuts" who are actually happy that 20% of the channels offered by their cable company are sports channels. The rest of us really don't need a 72 inch flat screen to watch the news or re-runs of the The Fugitive.

Another issue (electricity usage): It's true that the old CRTs gobble more electricity than the newer flat screens (especially on a per-equivalent-viewing area basis). Having said that, you can pay for a lot of electricity for the price of a new flat screen.

More than ever, this is one of those "YMMV" issues.
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