Saturday, January 17, 2009

Serves them right: Die, CircuitCity, Die!

Sorry employees, but your company sucked.  And those of you who aided in those actions ought be punished too.

Yes, I am still bitter about the Circuit City incident.  We've never put a penny on our card that we got for that purchase and never will.  

On a lighter note, this evening I ordered an HL67A750 from Vanns.com.  We'll see how that buying experience goes.  The lamp on our HL-T5075s is right around its usable life after only a year.  I checked the lamp hours and was shocked - we watch a lot of TV apparently.  At any rate, the warranty on it will expire in March, so I'll get a new bulb installed before then, then put that TV in the bedroom.  This should save us a few hundred in the long run since the bedroom doesn't see a ton of usage.

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

CES SiliconDust: HDHomeRun with Cablecard?

I was over at The Green Button and saw a video blog post from CES.  I decided to check it out since there was mention of SiliconDust, and I am considering purchasing an HDHomeRun to augment my Hauppauge 2250 for my HTPC.

The SiliconDust employee mentioned that a CableLabs representitive inquired as to why they weren't certified, and said that it was rather simple to become certified (for a fee, I am sure).  I got a little giddy when I thought of a possibility of a HDHomeRun-type device (network attached tuners) that are CableCard ready.  It could finally set non-OEM users free from the clutches of the likes of Comcast and other cable providers.

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

Adventures with Vista Media Center

Over the past year or so I've slowly been building up our entertainment equipment - starting with the HLT5075s that we purchased from BestBuy last year.  Since then, I've set up a Home Theater PC with a Blu-Ray drive, and begun using Vista Media Center.  It is very slick.  Most recently, we added a Hauppauge 2250 TV tuner to the machine as well as a Linksys DMA2200.

Overall I have been pretty pleased, although I was very miffed when it came out that Comcast announced that they were killing their analog service!  I bought the 2250 specifically for that feature, and would have just picked up 2 clear QAM tuners for $30 less had I known.

At any rate, we've been rather pleased to date.  Media Center has recorded shows like clockwork and it has been fantastic.  My wife picked it up no problem, so bonus points there.

Tonight, however, was a different story.  One show she had set to record was receiving no video signal, so it didn't record for her.  This was very disappointing as it was a January premiere she had been waiting since mid-November to see.  Luckily I was able to acquire the show quickly from another source so she could view it.  Still, it wasn't pleasant to experience it, especially since the source appeared fine when I viewed the same channel when she reported the problem.