Audio News for November 28, 2008

by | Nov 28, 2008 | Audio News | 0 comments

DTV Coupon Program & Poll – In a recent survey published by the AARP, 96% of respondents were aware that as of Feb. 17, 2009, they will need either a DTV or a converter box for their analog TV unless they have cable or satellite service. 28% of those under age 50 planned to purchase a DTV, 24% of those over 50. 41% of those under 50 were keeping their analog TV and using cable or satellite vs. 30% for those over 50.  A larger percentage were getting a converter box for their analog TV – 54% under 50 and 63% over 50. A new government ruling allows residents of nursing facilities and assisted living to receive one $40 coupon toward the purchase of a TV converter box.  This ruling fixes a discriminatory practice against people without access to satellite or cable service. Post office box holders were also made eligible. Special applications for the coupon are online at

Low-Cost Wireless Home Audio System – Eos has introduced the 100T1RB wireless audio system which includes a base station and a wireless stereo speaker satellite unit – you can distribute audio to up to four of them. The tabletop core unit is an iPod dock but also has inputs for your home audio system, XM Radio, or any digital audio player. The system uses GigaWave wireless technology, claimed to be interference-free up to 150 feet away. Each satellite is about the size of a large dictionary and has speakers, a powered amp, a detachable power supply and level control. It can be hung from a wall outlet or placed on a shelf or table. SRS Wow sound enhancement makes the small satellites sound bigger than they are. Eos has a risk-free 30-day trial offer. The base station and a single wireless speaker is $249.95 and additional stereo speakers are $129.95.

Blu-ray Player Pricing to Fall – According to the Hollywood Reporter, holiday prices for some Blu-ray players may fall to about $150 due to the economic downturn and competition from download services.  An analyst observed that there is more competition than expected from download alternatives such as Xbox360 and the Roku Netflix player, TiVo and Amazon. There are also new opportunities for Blu-ray, including LG and Samsung’s arrangements to let users download movies and TV shows straight from the Netflix site.

Do-It-Yourself Wiring – Cable shows and magazines have been showing home owners how easy it is to do their own home renovation projects, but a recent survey found that six in ten Americans are unhappy with their present home AC wiring, including the tangled mess behind and under desks and home entertainment systems.  Yet two-thirds of consumers shy away from rewiring and won’t hire professionals due to the high costs involved. The survey was commissioned by a company making paper-thin AC wiring that mounts to a surface and can disappear into walls or ceiling with a coat of paint or wallpaper.  They suggest investigating safe alternatives to conventional wires.  For example, you should put your HDTV display where you want it, not where the builder of your house decided to install an electrical or cable outlet.  Eliminating an ugly mountain of wires and extension cords can make your home more aesthetic, safer, and might increase its value as well.

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