Home Theater

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Scott Wilkinson on Home Theater

Episode 1219

Scott Wilkinson

Scott joins us to talk about the new Apple TV. Leo says it's odd that there's no 4K and it uses the old HDMI 1.4 standard, which Scott says can't carry the full resolution 4K bandwidth. It can't carry a limited, 8 bit color version, but it definitely won't handle high dynamic range for high frame rate. So from a 4K stand point, it's not all that great. Leo says that he recommends the Roku because it has 4K support and just about everything else but iTunes. The cool thing is search by Siri.

Scott Wilkinson on Home Theater

Episode 1217

Scott Wilkinson

Scott says that Vizio has dropped 3D completely from its entire line of HDTVs and is moving towards High Dynamic Range. Leo says that some people are confused between HDR and high frame rate, or HFR. Scott says that some TV makers are still in the HFR camp and many people don't like it because of it makes the image look like a soap opera. Scott also says that LCDs can make the problem worse with motion blur and then frame interpolation is applied that makes the image look even more plasticy. How can you get rid of the soap opera effect? Look for black frame insertion.

What budget HDTV should I buy?

Terri from Laguna Nigel, CA

Episode 1215

Terri is ready to buy a new HDTV, what's a good affordable one? Leo says that the Vizio E series is a very good buy. She'll want to get a larger screen than she thinks. For 10 feet away, a minimum size is 55". Make sure it's LED Backlit with local dimming. To watch Netflix and Amazon, get the smart TV and Vizio makes the best smart TV apps. When she gets it home, she should put it into movie mode. It'll look better. She'll also want to consider getting a home theater in a box or sound bar.

Scott Wilkinson on Home Theater

Episode 1215

Scott gets questions all the time about if we're going to get high dynamic range broadcasting. Scott says not for awhile. Most of the cameras can do it, but the delivery standards are such that it isn't capable to do so with the current standard. But that could change over time since TVs are starting to offer OLED HDR. But until the prices come down, you won't be seeing it any time soon.

When will 4K content be coming?

Steve from California

Episode 1213

Steve just got a new ultra high definition 4K TV and wants to know how he can best enjoy it. Leo says there really isn't a lot of 4K content right now and what there is (Netfflix, DirecTV Video on Demand) is heavily compressed. It depends on how good his bandwidth is. 25-50 Mbps down is what he'll need to watch House of Cards on Netflix. It needs to be a consistent 25 Mbps, not "as fast as" like cable providers say. There's also emerging 4K Blu-ray players. When they come out later this year, there will be a flood of content coming out.

Scott Wilkinson on Home Theater

Episode 1213

Scott Wilkinson

The question of the day is: what's more important, video or audio? Scott says that a movie without sound is called a silent movie. But on the other hand, a movie without an image is called radio. So Scott believes they are equally important, like the Yin and Yang of home theater. However, the bad audio can really make the home theater experience terrible, which is why surround sound and home theater really exists.

How can I get video off my DirecTV DVR?

Episode 1212

Steven from Los Angeles, CA
Composite cables

Steven records Tennis matches on his DirecTV DVR and he would like to copy the video files off. Leo says that's called digital video extraction and television broadcasters are paranoid that people will pirate those recordings. But there is an exception called the analog hole. This is where Steven would put a recorder between the DVR and the TV itself. He can't do it via HDMI, though. That's still got HDCP copy protection. But the red/white/yellow composite or red/green/blue/white component connectors will allow him to do it. He may also need an analog to digital converter.