Samsung today ushered in new high-end models to its LCD TV lineup: the Series 8 and Series 9 flat-panel LCD HDTVs. They're the step-ups to the Series 6 and Series 7 models, both of which garnered high marks when reviewed by CNET earlier this year (the LN52A650 scored an Editors' Choice). Full details follow. … Read more
Want to turbocharge your PC's video performance? The Asus ATI Radeon HD3450 graphics card works magic on the cheap. Though an entry-level card, it comes with an HDMI output and other bells and whistles. It lists for $49 (already a steal), but NewBiiz has the ATI Radeon HD3450 on sale for just $19 (after a $10 mail-in rebate).
Perfect for media-center PCs, the card's HDMI port offers easy HDTV connectivity. (It also has VGA and DVI ports.) It can produce resolutions up to 1920x1200, meaning it'll deliver full 1080p video. Plus, it's HDCP-compliant, so if you … Read more
At CNET we publish our recommended dark-room picture settings with every HDTV we review, and it's one of our most popular features. We also host a picture settings forum that you can search for your model, so you can try our settings and see if you like them. We still get lots of questions from readers interested in picture settings, however, so we'll cover a few of the most popular here.
Thanks for the dark-room picture settings, but could you give me settings for my TV in a bright room? No, I can't. We don't publish bright-room picture for a number of reasons. First off, room lighting varies tremendously; think about the difference between having a couple dim lamps turned on versus watching in daylight with a window shining on the screen, for instance. Second, a dark room is the best place to enjoy high-quality images, because the screen's reflective properties and the room's ambient light conditions won't influence the onscreen image. Third, we simply don't have the time to do so in every review. For a quick-and dirty bright-room calibration, take our dark-room picture settings and increase the contrast and/or backlight control until the image looks bright enough, then increase brightness until you see all of the detail in shadowy areas.
The KWorld PlusTV ATSC 340U is a USB TV tuner. It can receive both over-the-air digital signals and unencrypted QAM signals (which are delivered via cable). Either way, it's your chance to watch and record HDTV on your Windows PC. Newegg is selling the 340U for an impossibly cheap $14.99 (after a $20 mail-in rebate). Shipping will run you six bucks.
Keep in mind that this is strictly a digital tuner, meaning if you plug in a cable-TV cable, you'll receive only QAM stations. (If you're not up to speed on QAM, check the Wikipedia entry.) … Read more
Sanyo made headlines last week with a waterproof 52-inch LCD in full HD (note: we resisted saying it made a splash), but there are actually larger versions already on the market. Earlier this year, for example, we saw a water-resistant 57-inch HDTV from Aquavision, and now there's a model that dwarfs its competitors.
U.K.-based MarineAV is selling a 70-inch LCD that's "fully waterproof" and comes in full 1080p HD glory, as seen on Book of Joe. Not much is known about its original manufacturer, but its description says the TV uses a Samsung display … Read more
If you're still mystified about the ins and outs of HD content and hardware, or know someone who is, we were both surprised and impressed by this semi-snarky PDF coloring book on the topic (which we first saw on The Consumerist).
Despite the ironic hipster tone (the narrator is a hippo in a dress), there's actually some good, simplified information in the project--created by the guy behind the kids' product review blog NonToxicReviews.com.
Heidi, the HD Hippo, explains the difference between SD and HD, asking readers to, "Take your crayon and draw 480 dots inside this … Read more
Last month I mentioned that you shouldn't overpay for HDMI cables: The cheap ones are generally just as good as their pricey counterparts. Of course, the best deal is when you don't pay anything at all, like with eCost's free-after-rebate Azio 6-foot HDMI cable.
Shipping is way overpriced at $9.50 (for a cable? C'mon, eCost), but in the end you're getting an HDMI cable for $9.50--a great deal any way you slice it.
Panasonic has confirmed to CNET that it still intends to deliver Tru2way TVs to the market before the end of 2008. A company representative e-mailed us with the following statement:
Panasonic's Tru2way-enabled VIERA HDTV is in the certification process at CableLabs. Panasonic expects to deliver Tru2way-enabled VIERA HDTVs to the market in time for the holiday season.
Of course, the company's expectation does not equal a guarantee that we'll see the product on store shelves before the end of the year. But it does represent an affirmation that Panasonic is actively working to address the alleged issues … Read more
The 108-inch LCD that Sharp unveiled in January is now coming to market, ready to induce hernias everywhere.
The massive display measures 93.9 inches wide and 52.9 inches high, in full-HD 1080p resolution. That means there's plenty of real estate in the back for a variety of inputs, including HDMI and DVI-I connectors, according to Fareastgizmos. It also has a fanless design to keep noise to a minimum.