Tags: home theatre

12/05/09

  03:40:55 pm, by The Dreamer   , 305 words  
Categories: Stuff, Home Theatre, Cable HD DVR, Travel, TV, Home, TiVo HD / Premiere / Elite, Amateur Radio

I bought a clock

It seemed strange, and it turned out to be kind of difficult to do.

A while back I had swapped the cable company's HD DVR for another TiVo, and soon after I noticed something missing. I could no longer tell the time while watching TV. I wasn't too worried at first, just bothered....

But, then I started being late for online chats and nets, because I had no constant source of time while watching TV and since I time shift everything I watch....things never end on the hour.

So, I started searching around for a clock. I wanted simple, big, LED..... ideally atomic sync'd. But, that turned out to be quite difficult for some reason. The first 3 criteria was hard enough, that I gave up on the fourth. There was also the part where ideally it shouldn't be a hassle to purchase and get..... so eventually I found "Chaney Instruments Thor Large Display Alarm Clock" on Amazon.com and it was Prime eligible. So, I put it in my cart and planned to get it the next time a suitable opportunity presented itself.

The target date became the day after my return from Chicago Tardis. I did require that I remember to go online and place the order while I was there, and using the free lobby wifi one morning I did that. Even though it said it it would deliver by December 1st....it came separate from the other items by 2 day air (the other items came by ground from an in state location)....but didn't actually arrive until December 2nd. I was back at work, but UPS left on my doorstep (along with a couple of other packages from woot).

It turned out to be bigger than I needed, but it does the job.

Chaney Instruments Thor Large Display Alarm Clock

I still miss nets and show up late to online chats.... :lalala:

10/28/09

  03:14:04 pm, by The Dreamer   , 564 words  
Categories: Home Theatre, Travel, Healthcare

Strung some wire, hope it stays.

A couple weeks ago, I got a new center channel speaker via Woot and while setting it up and readjusting my surround sound levels....I discovered that my rear speakers weren't working.

I've been using an Accurian HomePlug Digital Audio Transmitter/Receiver to run my rear speakers, and I have a remote controlled switch for the rear unit....which defaults to off when it loses power. But, I looked and it was one. I power cycled everything and checked all the connections, but nothing.

Guess the unit is dead. Not sure if I can secure another one....but pretty much can't think of any other way to have wireless surrounds. I've done the RF method to death. 900MHz, 2.4GHz, 5.8GHz....all with poor to no results.

But, having recently strung wire along the ceiling to bridge the gap for my home network...I decided to look at this method to run wire to my rear surround speakers.

I looked around a bit here and there, and tried to decide how best to get the parts delivered to me. And, settled on buying speaker wire and 3m command adhesive cable clips on eBay. Specifically looking for the shippers that use USPS, so that I could get the bits without having to walk to the UPS store.

Today, having stayed home from work for my birthday...I set out to string up the wires.

Discovered that the speaker wire I had purchased was somewhat thicker than I expected...so a little big for the cable clips that I had purchased. But, I strung them up anyways....hopefully it'll stay up. I'll probably make note to acquire additional/bigger clips in the future to reinforce things.

But, I now have working rear surrounds again.

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08/11/09

  12:27:45 pm, by The Dreamer   , 359 words  
Categories: Home Theatre, TV, TiVo HD / Premiere / Elite

I came this close to buying another @Tivo HD

With the coming fall season, it was starting to look like that 4 tuners of my current two TiVo HDs might not be enough to cover my recording needs. So, I was trying to work getting another TiVo HD into my budget. And, figuring out how it would fit into my Home Theatre setup.

I had worked out where it might go, and I even got another TiVo HD remote and figured out how to change codes (which I did because #2 conflicted with a Honeywell Fan, which I mentioned earlier).

But, with a little time on my hand, I made up a spreadsheet (again) and worked out the shows I want and the tuners I have...and it looks like I can make it work with the TiVo HD's I have now. Plus, I could always just cut back on TV. There's shows I recorded last year that aren't going to get recorded this year, and who says all the new shows are going to make cut. Either mine or the networks...usually the network cuts the shows I want to watch and keeps the shows that I cut...so the tuner over load tends to be more of a transient problem....

Though there have been times in the past where 4 was not enough back in the ReplayTV days....though there was the getting of HBO/SHO during that period. But, only appointment show during that period was "Dead Like Me"....I kept the package and even continued it after moving to Manhattan, KS and with Cox....but eventually it was time to end it. I don't seem to watch nearly as much TV as I used to.

Though it would be nice if there was a way to upgrade the external drives on my TiVo HD's....perhaps someday I'll clear the backlog of shows on them, and do it.... like someday I'll add more storage to various computers at home....

Now to find some time, sit down and reorganize my season passes to fit the plan I've come up with on my spreadsheet. Though I also want to tweak it a little, similar to how I had a plan of what shows would be on which ReplayTV....

08/01/09

  01:01:00 pm, by The Dreamer   , 534 words  
Categories: Stuff, ReplayTV, Home Theatre, Computer, TiVo HD / Premiere / Elite

The UPS and HT shuffle

Even though I was up before noon and could do something dangerous, I got lazy and procrastinated the morning away. Continuing the lack of motivation and go out and do stuff, I jumped into the latest equipment shuffle.

I started by turning off the UPS on the left side of my HT rack and seeing what went off. And, then started removing cables and stuff, making sure I knew things were going as expected. Plus there were other cables to nowhere or longer loops caused by the removal of some ReplayTVs and related components.

Then, I moved my 2 TiVo HDs to occupy the void that was once 4 ReplayTVs (at one time 5, but I had removed the dead one some time ago). And, then I swapped the GeekSquad 1285 UPS for the PowerSource 400.

With things powered up, the guage is reading 120W for load. That's pretty good, guess the numbers I pulled off online were a bit too conservative. Means there'll be ample capacity to add another TiVo HD + expander when that time comes. Though alternatively, there is the new void on the right side caused by the movement of a TiVo HD. And, I'm sure the SmartUPS on the right side can handle having a TiVo on it again.

So, it was time to go put the GeekSquad 1285 back into service.

The first plan was to put 'box' on it. And, maybe the monitor. There's an APC BackUPS 1500VA that is powering 'box' and the monitor along with my Windows stack. So, 'box' and monitor needed to move. Ideally, 'box' would go on a PowerSource 400, but that one hasn't been purchased yet. But, once I traced out the cables and discovered some quirks (by accidentally pulling the plug on 'orac'.) I got 'box' and monitor onto the GeekSquad 1285.

Then I noticed the annoyance. The 'silent' icon was no longer lit. Guess that explains why it was making a racket last power outage. Apparently it needs utility power to remember its settings, seems kind of lame. So I got my laptop and set about to reprogram it.

While I was connected I saw that runtime was shorter than I expected the move would get me. Guess 'box' draws quite a lot of power, and the UPS isn't really up to that kind of task. Even though it would also be bad, I ended up putting 'box' onto the PowerSource 400 that backs up the network switch and 'lhaven'. Guess at a future date, I'll move 'box' and switch to a separate PowerSource 400. That'll be fun.

I put the GeekSquad 1285 to back up 'orac' and monitor instead. Interesting that Gnome Power Manager saw the UPS, and seemed to indicate that it knew what to do now. Guess we'll find out next outage. Not sure if that means I should be looking at a UPS other than another PowerSource 400 to protect 'box'. Its a trade off....I would rather 'box' never go down in an extended outage, though it is also modern enough now that it should detect and handle modern UPSs as well.

I guess we'll see when the next impulse hits.

Of course, there's the question of what to do with the now retired CPS1500AVR-HO and CPS700AVR. :hmm:

Now instead of subjecting some poor random forum to a long rambling thought, I will try to consolidate those things into this blog where they can be more easily ignored profess to be collected thoughts from my mind.

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