• The Stuff You Need to Know RSS Feed

    by Published on 08-21-2017 12:28 PM
    Article Preview

    In FOOD FOR THOUGHT we'll take a look at the things we take for granted that are actually so amazing that it's hard to even imagine that they work at all.

    I've been meaning to write this for a while. It figures that I would put it off until the actual day of the solar eclipse.

    Everything ...
    by Published on 08-21-2017 11:25 AM
    1. Categories:
    2. Auto/Marine
    Article Preview

    You can, but it's going to have to be a fairly large dish.

    If you're an Alaska or Hawaii resident, you probably know that satellite TV works a little different there. Instead of the pert little Slimline dishes we use in the mainland, the recommend ...
    by Published on 08-21-2017 10:57 AM
    1. Categories:
    2. Cell Phones
    Article Preview

    Not what you think they do. If you look at this weBoost Home 4G booster, you'll see the four green indicator lights on the front. You would think that if you see all green lights, you would be getting excellent boost and problem-free cell service.

    You'd kinda be right, but you'd kinda be wrong. ...
    by Published on 08-20-2017 03:04 PM
    1. Categories:
    2. Cell Phones,
    3. TV Antennas,
    4. Online/MobileTV

    It's coming. Within the next two years, a lot of television stations will be moving to new frequencies. The goal here is that channels 37-51 will be given over to a whole new generation of LTE cellular data services, to feed the ever-growing demand for cellular data. The FCC just finished a multi-year plan which will see a lot of stations moving down the spectrum.

    So yes, this means that you'll need a new LTE filter. The new cell services will come in just fine on your TV antenna and there's a good chance that they'll interfere with your TV picture.

    The kicker is that you can't buy those filters yet, because no one makes them. Our product team at Solid Signal is working hard with our contract manufacturers to get a filter ready for you, and there are still at least two years before any cell provider starts using those "600MHz" frequencies.

    In the meantime, your older antenna could already be picking up frequencies in the 700MHz range that are used for today's LTE services. If you have unexpected interference in your antenna signals, pick up one of these Channel Master LTE filters and put it inline with your antenna cable. It will take care of today's problems, and as for tomorrow's... we will deal with that tomorrow.
    by Published on 08-20-2017 12:28 PM
    1. Categories:
    2. TV Antennas
    Article Preview

    We actually have a lot of data about the electrical properties of a massive chunk of copper, thanks to this lady. Although you're extraordinarily unlikely to put a piece of copper 151 feet high up and use it as an antenna, you might wonder what would happen if you did.

    Copper, you see, is a very good conductor ...
    by Published on 08-19-2017 12:44 PM
    Article Preview

    Note: The Ken Reid TV Guidance Counselor Podcast is rated PG-13 and may contain mild language.

    I'm Ken Reid, a stand up comedian from Boston, MA and a life long television fan. I've been twice nominated as the Best Stand up in Boston and I have been featured ...
    by Published on 08-19-2017 11:50 AM
    1. Categories:
    2. Online/MobileTV
    Article Preview

    Streaming services don’t just compete with content
    . Two major streaming networks recently added some top talent to their respective rosters.

    Some big names recently joined Netflix and Sling TV. There’s no doubt that these streaming giants believe that the addition of new blood will help make their respective ...
    by Published on 08-18-2017 05:25 PM
    1. Categories:
    2. TV Antennas

    If the antenna on your roof is older than 40 years then it probably uses flat wire that you haven't seen anywhere else. This 300-ohm "twin-lead" cable was all the rage in the 1950s as it was inexpensive to make and easy to install. However, it was replaced eventually by the kind of coaxial cable you see all over the place.

    To be honest, the flat wire is a really good fit for an antenna since its impedance characteristics (an important measure of how well signals "flow" through a wire" is fairly similar to that of the antenna itself. In order to use coaxial cable, an antenna uses a piece of equipment called a "balun" which converts the antenna's 300-ohm impedance to the 75-ohm impedance of a coaxial cable. Baluns also used to be quite expensive, which was another reason people didn't use coaxial cable. Today they're ridiculously cheap.

    Although twin-lead wire is pretty good for antenna signals, it's completely unshielded and prone to interference from cell phones which obviously people in the 1950s didn't have to worry about. Today though... you do need to worry about it and you also probably need to worry about the sun damage that 40-60 years of direct exposure has done to your old flat wires.

    Normally I say, if it isn't broke... don't fix it. But if you're seeing any sort of interference on your TV picture while watching antenna TV, I would rewire the line with coaxial cable and get a balun to connect your old antenna to it. This will give you much better results, including stronger signal and the ability to split the signal easily to go to multiple TVs. You may even be able to repurpose some cable company leftover wire for this purpose.

    Folks, some things made in the 1950s are classics. Old cars, old music, those are great. Old wires though... time to deal with them.
    by Published on 08-18-2017 04:06 PM
    Article Preview

    Actually, they'd rather you call it "Ultra HD." The people who make 4K televisions approved that term about five years ago and ever since, most TV makers have desperately hoped you would use it.

    And let's be honest, we still call it 4K. The only question is, "why?"

    The ...
    by Published on 08-18-2017 03:34 PM

    I know that your powers of retention are as wet as a warthog's back side... and if that holds particular meaning for you then you're going to like this video. It's recently surfaced as part of "yet another" re-release of everyone's favorite cartoon about daddy issues, The Lion King.

    It's been common practice (even back in the 1990s) to record animation voice actors saying their lines so the animators have a visual reference for the way the characters' mouths are supposed to move. Call it a simple cheat that works for everyone. What it also means is that there's a great record of the performances that drive the movie. In the video above you get a great look at Whoopi Goldberg, Cheech Marin, and especially Jeremy Irons who completely acts out his lines as if he were on stage. It's great fun for everyone and a quick video, so why not take it easy for a few minutes and visit the pridelands?
    by Published on 08-18-2017 03:00 PM
    1. Categories:
    2. Cell Phones
    Article Preview

    This article was authored by Ken Perkins and was originally published at the weBoost blog. It is reprinted with permission.

    Pretty much all of us have cell phones that we use a lot. And pretty much all of us expect to be able to use our cell phone wherever we go – home, office, school, the commute between, shopping, the gym, restaurants and bars, the park.

    You name it. Wherever we go, we expect our phones to work.

    Page 2 of 11 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8