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HDTV Magazine Columns Archive (May, 2009)

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LED (LCD) HDTVsPC & Laptop Technology

HDTV Almanac - LED TVs: What Are They Really?

By Alfred Poor • May 29 2009, 1:00pm

I’ll blame Samsung. Not their engineers who develop some great technology, and not their manufacturing people who execute those designs to create top quality products, but I expect that it’s the marketing folks who came up with this one. There’s a lot of buzz about “LED TVs“, which appears to be a term that Samsung [...]

EntertainmentCable HDTVDigital (DTV) Transition

HDTV Almanac - New HDMI Spec on the Way

By Alfred Poor • May 28 2009, 1:00pm

HDMI has become the first choice in making the connection between HDTVs and other components in a home entertainment system; the installed base includes more than a billion connections. The single cable carries video and audio, which helps eliminate the rat’s nest of wires that often accompanies electronic equipment. The high speed digital connection provides [...]

LCD HDTVsBroadcast

HDTV Almanac - JVC Launches LCD TV Monitor

By Alfred Poor • May 27 2009, 1:00pm

An interesting announcement was posted yesterday. JVC has released a new 42″ 1080p LCD TV, except that it’s not really a TV; it’s a monitor. What’s the difference, you ask? The difference is that a TV has a tuner that can receive a broadcast signal and extract the sound and images from it, but a [...]

Cable HDTV

HDTV Almanac - Time Warner Drops HDNet

By Alfred Poor • May 26 2009, 1:00pm

Time Warner announced recently that the company will drop HDNet from its cable services. Apparently, it was unable to come to terms with Mark Cuban for his HDNet and HDNet Movie channels. A a result, the two will be dropped from the Time Warner line-up next Sunday, May 31.
Cuban launced HDNet in September 2001 to [...]

General Interest

HDTV Almanac - Happy Memorial Day!

By Alfred Poor • May 25 2009, 1:00pm

If you’re in the United States, I hope that you are getting to enjoy this Memorial Day long weekend. Maybe you’ll get to watch some sports or enjoy a movie on an HDTV screen. Or maybe there will be a backyard barbecue or other celebration of the start of summer. No matter how you spend [...]

HTPCs & LaptopsInternet HD Video

HDTV Almanac - Windows Media Center Gets Netflix

By Alfred Poor • May 23 2009, 1:00pm

Do you have a subscription to Netflix? Do you have a computer with Windows Media Center? Then it is now easier than ever to take advantage of the streaming online movies that are available free to subscribers. This gives you access to the more than 12,000 movies and videos that you can also access with [...]


HDTV Almanac - Samsung TVs to Tweet!

By Alfred Poor • May 21 2009, 1:00pm

Okay, file this item in the “There are only two kinds of people in the world” folder. Either you will think that this is a great idea, or a terrible one.
Last year, I reported on Samsung’s plans to provide Yahoo! widgets on their Series 6 and 7 LCD TVs to provide feeds of information from [...]

General Interest

HDTV Almanac - Dots Enough Already?

By Alfred Poor • May 20 2009, 1:00pm

Okay; first we had standard definition TV which we will imprecisely assume has 640 by 480 pixels in the image (because that’s close enough for our purposes here). Then HDTV came along with 720p (1,280 by 720 pixels) and 1080i/1080p (1,920 by 1,080 pixels) resolutions. Movie theaters need even higher resolution, and so the standard [...]


HDTV Almanac - LCD TV Sales Up… and Down

By Alfred Poor • May 19 2009, 1:00pm

DisplaySearch has released their information on worldwide LCD TV shipments (from manufacturers, as opposed to the sales by retailers) for the first quarter of 2009, and the trend is familiar. The number of units shipped — 26.7 million — was up 27% compared with the first quarter of 2008, but the revenues actually declined 1% [...]

Digital (DTV) Transition

HDTV Almanac - DTV-Day Minus 25…

By Alfred Poor • May 18 2009, 1:00pm

Nielsen has announced that about 3.3 million U.S. households remain totally unprepared for the end of analog television broadcasts on June 12. If you’re a glass-half-full type, this means that about half the households that were totally unprepared in January are now at least partially prepared. On the other hand, if you’re a glass-half-empty type, [...]

Digital Rights Management (DRM)LED (LCD) HDTVsDigital (DTV) Transition

HDTV Almanac - Real Networks Fights Back Against DRM

By Alfred Poor • May 15 2009, 1:00pm

DRM: it stands for “digital rights management” but many believe that it’s just an indirect way of saying “copy protection“. Publishers of all sorts of copyrighted material — including music and movies – have tried to find ways to prevent people from making illegal copies of their products. The major Hollywood movie studios created the [...]


HDTV Almanac - Blu-ray Player on the Wall…

By Alfred Poor • May 14 2009, 1:00pm

Who’s the thinnest of them all? I don’t know if the Samsung BD-P4600 is the thinnest Blu-ray player on the market, but at 1.5″ thick, it’s certainly a contender. And it’s designed to hang on the wall right next to your flat panel HDTV. Pretty cool, huh?

General Interest

HDTV Almanac - Systemax Expands Online Empire

By Alfred Poor • May 13 2009, 1:00pm

As I reported last month, the auction of Circuit City’s assets happened yesterday, and according to several published accounts, Systemax came out as the top bidder for the online retail site and other intellectual property. The deal requires confirmation by the bankruptcy judge, which is expected later today.
You may not be familiar with Systemax, but [...]

New Products & Equipment

Video Report - Buffalo TeraStation III NAS

By Alfred Poor • May 13 2009, 10:50am

The TeraStation III is a network-attached storage (NAS) device that lets you share and backup files on a network. It is also a DLNA Certified™ media server. In this company-sponsored five minute video, Alfred Poor gives you an overview of the various features, and shows how easy it is to install and use on your home network.


HDTV Almanac - Vizio Regains #1 Spot in LCD TV

By Alfred Poor • May 12 2009, 1:00pm

DisplaySearch has released their preliminary data on the flat panel TV market for the first quarter of 2009, and it indicates that the market was much stronger than might have been expected. The company tracks manufacturer shipments, not the actual retail sales. (Retail sales are tracked by DisplaySearch’s parent company, NPD.) LCD TV shipments declined [...]

Events & Tradeshows

HDTV Almanac - Will Someone Please Answer the Remote?

By Alfred Poor • May 11 2009, 1:00pm

You’ve got a short stack of remote controls in your lap as you’re watching television, and the telephone rings. Now you have to shuffle around and find the phone handset to answer the call. Well, if Motorola has its way, your pile of electronic controls could be pared down to a single device.
At CES 2009, [...]

General Interest

HDTV Almanac - Not Your Father’s Rabbit Ears

By Alfred Poor • May 8 2009, 1:00pm

Have your experiences with “rabbit ear” TV antennas been like mine? Have you ever draped pieces of aluminum foil and copper wire off the telescoping rods in hopes of getting a slightly better picture? Maybe you’ve turned them this way and that, only to find that the image changes when you let go?
Well, the good [...]

Digital (DTV) TransitionDigital Rights Management (DRM)Broadcast

HDTV Almanac - Maine Senators Concerned about DTV Cliff

By Alfred Poor • May 7 2009, 1:00pm

The two U.S. Senators from Maine, Olympia J. Snowe and Susan Collins , have introduced the The DTV Cliff Effect Assistance Act of 2009. This bill aims to address some of the problems that rural consumers are encountering with poor reception of digital television broadcast signals.
As mentioned here on more than a few occasions, digital [...]

Internet HD Video

HDTV Almanac - Hulu Scores Again

By Alfred Poor • May 6 2009, 1:00pm

Last week, Disney announced that it will join NBC Universal, News Corp., and Providence Equity Partners as an equity owner in Hulu, the online video site. As part of the deal, Disney will post a wide range of full-length episodes of ABC and Disney show content on the Hulu site. Among the shows to be [...]


HDTV Almanac - LED LCD TVs: Back or Side-Lit?

By Alfred Poor • May 5 2009, 1:00pm

Until recently, just about every LCD TV used cold cathode fluorescent lamps (CCFL) to provide the very bright backlights required to create an image using an LCD panel. (Even when showing an all-white screen, about 95% of the light is absorbed by the panel, so the backlight needs to produce a lot of light.) CCFL [...]

HD DVDPC & Laptop TechnologyDigital (DTV) Transition

HDTV Almanac - Panasonic HD Camera Give-Away

By Alfred Poor • May 4 2009, 1:00pm

Panasonic has created a “Living in HD” (LiHD) social networking site which it hopes will help “demystify High Definition and ‘unconfuse’ the consumer”. It provides places to post still and video images, discuss technology, find answers to your questions, and more. And to promote the site, Panasonic is giving away an HD digital camera every [...]

Digital (DTV) TransitionPolitics & PolicyCable HDTV

HDTV Almanac - FCC Updates DTV Transition Site

By Alfred Poor • May 1 2009, 1:00pm

Well, the horse’s departure from the barn has been delayed, which has given the FCC some extra time to work on the closing the barn door. Last week, the agency announced a revamped Web site for the digital TV transition at www.dtv.gov. With about six weeks to go before the June 12 transition date, this [...]