Sunday, March 20, 2011

TV Today

Recently I have been thinking about television quite a bit. In my area (Australia) there are currently works underway to convert the analog television system over to digital television.

The blessing in all this is that additional channels are becoming available. For years if you did not subscribe to paid television you had access to around 5 channels which offered very hit and miss content – Face it 5 channels for a population of 20+ million made it hard to cater to everyone…

In a few small years that number has jumped from 5 to 15, subject to your area (where the signal can be received) which offers literally X3 the amount of channels.

In addition to many other hobbies/interests, A/V is amongst them. In a smallish 2 bedroom apartment housing just me I have 3 televisions and two computers with TV tuner devices…it’s my own little TV land.

Anyhow the newest two TV units include a HD flat screen plasma and a cheap USB stick TV Tuner that appears only to have the ability to receive digital channels and you can’t feed other equipment into such as a VCR (I guess that’s so you’re forced to buy the companies other product, the VHS to DVD gizmo).

Anyhow despite getting a good deal on the plasma television I couldn’t help but think “say this <$50 USB stick can pretty much do what the more expensive television does”

Well sure the USB stick is an add-on to a machine capable of running it which costs money…but that machine (the home PC if you hadn’t already guessed) has numerous functions. So I compared the two, and what it comes down to is that the difference is one is bigger, has A/V inputs, and is stand alone whilst the other is portable (put it in a laptop, take anywhere), can only tune digital channels and even if you wanted to hook up a Wii through it you are unable to.

For the money I spent on the TV could have bought a mid-tier laptop with a DVD drive, Wi-Fi, 250-500GB HDD, a USB TV Tuner and still had money left over. Throw in a decent data projector and some stereo speakers and that’s a home theatre setup right there…that and you could visit blogger on a massive screen!

I’m not suggesting this is the first time this sort of thing has been discussed, I am just sharing my thoughts and wondering why more people don’t opt for this over big flashy televisions…and don’t get me wrong, I love mine. 

6 comments:

  1. Interesting thoughts. How does a TV Tuner work? Followed!

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  2. Could you post some pictures of your setup?

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  3. My setup is a bit all over the place at the moment, when I get my act together I will.

    Not sure how the tuner works per say, just receives a signal and displays it...you get software to change channels, can even use a remote...displays on your monitor like any other program, can generally do picture in picture and time shifting and all that stuff I'm not fussed about.

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  4. Pictures of the setup will give me a better situation scetch about this.
    Nice blog though, followed you!

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  5. I certainly hope they add more channels than that in the future. TV is a HUGE thing for culture.

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