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Category: #Television (Page 1 of 6)

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How to Get Faster Streaming Speeds on Your TV

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Is your TV’s network speed getting you down? There are all sorts of factors that can affect streaming or download performance, from the speed of your internet connection to interference from other devices over wireless. Let’s take a look at some solutions.

Read This Article on How-To Geek ›

Source: https://www.howtogeek.com/763495/how-to-get-faster-streaming-speeds-on-your-tv/
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The Article Was Written/Published By: Tim Brookes

How to Add Gigabit Ethernet to a TV Without It

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TV manufacturers have rushed to improve their latest models with fast HDMI 2.1 ports capable of supporting 4K gaming at 120Hz in glorious HDR. Unfortunately, most of the same models still use outdated 100Mb Ethernet ports. Fortunately, we have a workaround.

Read This Article on How-To Geek ›

Source: https://www.howtogeek.com/763255/how-to-add-gigabit-ethernet-to-a-tv-without-it/
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The Article Was Written/Published By: Tim Brookes

The 6 Best Streaming Boxes and Sticks for Holiday 2021

Apple TV 4K against blue backgroundApple

Streaming devices are a simple way to step up your entertainment game regardless if you have a smart TV or not. Content recommendations, well-designed remotes, and much more make these gadgets an excellent addition to any living room—so let’s look at the ones you should have your eyes on.

What to Look for in a Streaming Device

The best streaming sticks and boxes all offer the same basic features. Still, though, there are a few things to take into consideration before making a purchase:

  • Operating System (OS): This is the main difference between various streaming devices. While a lot of streaming operating systems hit the same beats, there’s still room for preference. They can vary significantly in design, features, and even what apps they support (although the major ones will be present regardless of what device you choose).
  • Specs: Being able to support 4K, various HDR modes, and surround sound are all important factors of at-home entertainment these days. Still, these features can increase the price significantly, so it’s not uncommon for manufacturers to create multiple versions of the same streaming device with different specs. Most commonly, there will be a 1080p and 4K edition to give you multiple price points to pick from. These different versions usually differ on what resolutions they support, but we’ll be sure to provide you with a breakdown of each device’s situation in this regard.
  • Extra Features: Voice controls, game streaming, and extra ports like USB and Ethernet are all useful features that not every streaming device offers. These are nice bonuses you might not use all the time but are appreciated nonetheless.

Best for Apple Users: Apple TV 4K

Apple TV 4KApple

Pros

  • 4K, HDR support
  • Surround sound
  • Compatibility with other Apple devices
  • Sleek remote

Cons

  • Limited ports (only HDMI and Ethernet)
  • Expensive

Apple’s streaming player is excellent for a lot of reasons, but one of the biggest draws are the tie-ins with the rest of Apple’s ecosystem. The TV uses Siri for its voice assistant, and you can use the Apple TV app to control things from your phone or tablet and control HomeKit enabled smart home devices from the TV. As far as performance goes, you can expect 4K with HDR (namely, Dolby Vision and HDR10) and Dolby Atmos digital surround sound for a fully immersive experience.

For Apple fans, it’s the obvious choice, but if you’re on a tighter budget, there’s also the 1080p edition available. It’s around $40 cheaper, lowers the resolution, and has less powerful hardware inside. You can also choose between 32 or 64GB of internal storage for either edition, with the latter option being more expensive.

Best for Apple Users

Apple TV 4K


Siri-compatibility and excellent specs all around make this the ideal choice if you’re invested in Apple’s ecosystem.

Amazon

$169.00
$179.00 Save 6%

Best for Google Users: Chromecast with Google TV

Chromecast with Google TV device and remote control on wooden surfaceJustin Duino

Pros

  • 4K, HDR support
  • Surround sound
  • Great recommendations
  • Google Assistant

Cons

  • No extra ports

Chromecasts have far outgrown their once simple purpose of simply casting things from your phone to your TV. The latest model is a feature-rich streaming stick that easily rivals the rest on this list. This Chromecast runs Google TV (formerly Android TV), which has all the best services, uses Google Assistant for voice controls and smart home functionality, and lets Google do what it does best—analyze your preferences and recommend content you’ll probably like. The content recommendations on the home screen draw from all your favorite services and make picking what to watch next a little bit easier.

It also supports 4K and HDR (Dolby Vision, HDR10, and HDR10+) as well as Dolby Atmos surround sound, so you’re well-covered when it comes to performance. And if you’re interested in game streaming, then Google Stadia works on this Chromecast as well.

The Chromecast with Google TV is available in three colors: Snow, Sunrise, and Sky.

Best for Google Users


Chromecast with Google TV


Touting impressive performance and great content recommendations, the latest Chromecast is an easy choice for Google fans.

Best for Alexa Users: Amazon Fire TV Stick 4K

Amazon Fire TV Stick 4KAmazon

Pros

  • 4K, HDR support
  • Surround sound
  • Works with other Alexa devices

Cons

  • No extra ports

If your home is already kitted out with loads of Alexa-enabled devices, then the Fire TV is the right choice for you. It offers the typical stuff—4K output (along with Dolby Vision or HDR10+ for HDR support), Dolby Atmos surround sound, all the streaming services your heart desires, and some solid content recommendations. But on top of that, it uses Amazon Alexa, which means you can control the stick using other Alexa devices in your home or vice versa. It’s an excellent way to watch your favorite media (especially Amazon Prime Video naturally), and the smart home tie-ins are a nice bonus if you’ve heavily invested in that ecosystem.

There’s also the Fire TV Stick Max that supports Wi-Fi 6 (albeit for a slightly higher price), and the Fire TV Lite that only supports 1080p (for anyone watching their budget).

Best for Alexa Users

Amazon Fire TV Stick 4K


The Fire TV Stick predictably plays well with Alexa on top of being a solid streaming device.

Amazon

$34.99
$49.99 Save 30%

Best for Simplicity: Roku Ultra

Roku UltraRoku

Pros

  • 4K, HDR support
  • Surround sound
  • Plenty of ports
  • Simple OS

Cons

  • Limited voice assistant functionality

While in-depth voice assistant support and algorithmic recommendations are great, sometimes what’s simplest is best—something that Roku has always been great at. Roku TV is an incredibly simple OS that allows you to quickly jump into streaming services without much fuss. On top of that, the Ultra supports 4K (with Dolby Vision and HDR10+), Dolby Atmos, and the remote has shortcut buttons you can assign to your favorite apps. There’s also a USB port on the box itself if you want to display video from other devices and an aux port on the remote for private listening. Chances are it has the streaming app you want, whether that’s Netflix or HBO Max.

It’s a fantastic streaming box, but if you don’t already have a soundbar, you might want to consider the Roku Streambar Pro instead. It features the same stuff seen in the Ultra, but all built into a solid soundbar. And what’s not to love about getting an audio upgrade and a great streaming device all in one? Or if you prefer, you can plug a decent set of headphones into the remote control thanks to the included headphone jack.

Best for Simplicity

Roku Ultra


The many ports and performance of the Ultra makes it enticing enough, but Roku’s simple approach to UI design makes it especially great if you’re looking for something straightforward.

Amazon

$92.75
$99.99 Save 7%

Best Budget: Roku Express 4K+

Roku Express 4K+Roku

Pros

  • 4K + basic HDR support
  • Affordable
  • Simple OS

Cons

  • Limited voice controls
  • No extra ports
  • No Dolby Vision

The Express 4K+ still features Roku TV, so its UI is easy to navigate, but it also delivers 4K (with HDR10+) support for a lower price than most. This small box still has all the performance you need out of a streaming device nowadays but manages to avoid breaking the $50 price point. If you’re okay with (or even prefer) Roku’s more straightforward approach to streaming devices, it’s an excellent choice if you’re on a budget, even among the various Roku streaming sticks.

Best Budget

Roku Express 4K+


A stripped-down streaming device that still brings solid performance and a great UI.

Amazon

$28.98
$39.99 Save 28%

Best for Versatility: NVIDIA Shield

NVIDIA ShieldNVIDIA

Pros

  • 4K, HDR support
  • Surround sound
  • Game streaming through GeForce NOW
  • 3GB internal storage

Cons

  • Expensive
  • Limited storage for a Plex server

The other streaming devices mentioned so far have been almost exclusively focused on streaming services as their primary function, and it makes sense why: that’s what most people use them for. However, if you want a box with more functionality, the Shield is precisely that. It still supports 4K along with Dolby Vision and Dolby Atmos surround sound for when you are watching stuff, but there’s a lot more going on here.

It runs AndroidTV, so you can use Google Assistant or Amazon Alexa on it, stream games with it via GeForce NOW, and even have it function as a small (yet proper) Plex server with 3GB of internal storage. On the outside of the box, it features two USB ports for other devices to connect with and a gigabit Ethernet port. The Shield is more expensive than most streaming devices because of all this, but for what you’re getting here, that price is justified.

There is a cheaper version of the Shield, though, that drops the internal storage for a MicroSD card slot, loses the USB ports, and features a slimmer body. If having internal storage out of the box isn’t important to you, it’s a good alternative.

Best for Versatility

Nvidia Shield


There’s a lot packed into the Shield, making it the perfect choice if you’re looking for a gadget that’s more than just a streaming stick.

Amazon

$199.99

Source: https://www.reviewgeek.com/99583/the-best-streaming-boxes-and-sticks/
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The Article Was Written/Published By: Eric Schoon

Google TV Just Got More Personal and Easier to Use

Google TV ProfilesGoogle

Today Google announced several exciting new changes to help make Google TV more personal and easier to use for everyone in the house. From personal profiles built around the TV content you watch the most to at-a-glance cards in Ambient mode with game scores, news, music, and more.

The idea here is that anyone in your home can set up their version of Google TV to deliver a more personalized experience that’s easy to use, familiar, and tailored around what they want to see.

Google TV Profiles

With personal profiles, similar to Netflix, you’ll see a list of profiles to choose from when you open up Google TV. That way, when you fire up Google TV with your profile, you’ll see specific TV and movie recommendations or the popular “continue watching” for select shows you’ve watched instead of anyone in the home.

Recommendations, watchlists, and the Google Assistant are all built around you and your profile. The company confirmed that each device could have up to 12 profiles, and yes, that includes kids’ profiles that an adult can manage.

Plus, the next feature we’ll explain will really make profiles come in handy.

Glanceable Cards in Ambient Mode

Google TV at-a-glance personalized cardsGoogle

Soon, Google TV will have new glanceable cards in ambient mode when you’re not watching a TV show or movie. These at-a-glance cards will be full of helpful information aside from just show recommendations. Now, you’ll get the latest game scores from your favorite team or sport, weather, news tailored around what you’re interested in and much more. And of course, this will all be unique based on the currently active profile.

Users can scroll through the cards and select on-screen shortcuts to jump to their own Google account photos, podcasts or continue playing music right where they left off on another device. So when you’re done watching another episode of your favorite show and the TV is sitting idle, it’ll jump to Ambient mode and start showing personalized content just for you.

Improved Live TV Tabs

And finally, in its continued efforts to take on the likes of Roku or Amazin Fire TV, Google just made it easier to stream live TV from some of the top providers. Google’s Live and For You tabs on Google TV will now show a broader list of shows you can instantly tune in and watch.

The Live TV tab now integrates deeper with YouTube TV, Sling TV, and Philo, making it easier to find and access live TV with fewer clicks.

In closing, Google confirmed that profiles and the improved ambient mode cards would first be available on the Chromecast and Google TV sets from Sony and TCL “soon,” and likely sometime next month. Profiles are available worldwide on any Google TV, while ambient mode cards come to the U.S. first. Additionally, some of these new features and their availability may vary by the device manufacturer. That said, we’re hopeful any Google TV device will get the complete list of changes.

Source: Google Blog

Source: https://www.reviewgeek.com/100325/google-tv-just-got-more-personal-and-easier-to-use/
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The Article Was Written/Published By: Cory Gunther

The Best Streaming Devices of 2021 to Watch Netflix and More

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Streaming services make it easy to watch your favorite movies and shows, but it can be hard to stream them on your TV. Our streaming device recommendations will make it easy to put on Netflix and enjoy hassle-free.

Read This Article on How-To Geek ›

Source: https://www.howtogeek.com/733629/best-streaming-devices/
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The Article Was Written/Published By: Elizabeth Henges

What Is Contrast Ratio?

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If you’re searching for a new TV or monitor, you’ve probably come across the term “contrast ratio” in marketing materials and reviews online. So what exactly does contrast ratio mean and what does a “good” contrast ratio look like?

Read This Article on How-To Geek ›

Source: https://www.howtogeek.com/728424/what-is-contrast-ratio/
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The Article Was Written/Published By: Tim Brookes

The 6 Best TVs with Google Chromecast

the best google tvs or tvs with built-in chromecast (1)VIZIO/Sony/VIZIO

A great TV is a must in a modern household. And if you love the ability to easily cast your phone screen or even Internet browser to your TV, then you should look at purchasing an Android TV or a TV with Chromecast functionality built-in.

What to Look for in a Google TV

There are so many great TV options out there, so how do you choose the right one? Well, if you’re looking specifically for a Google TV with Chromecast functionality, you’ll need to consider regular TV specs as well as some Chromecast specific bits. Here are some key points to think about:

    • How You’ll Use the TV: The most important factor you need to consider is how you’re going to use the TV. Are you primarily going to be streaming media on it or will you be playing demanding video games on it as well? Depending on how you plan to use the TV, you might need to pay more attention to specific specs like the refresh rate, resolution, display tech, and the number and type of the HDMI ports. A good TV for gaming has a high refresh rate, high resolution, and a more modern display type.
    • Size: Next, you’ll need to think about where you want to put the TV and how you want it to fit into your space. Always measure your space multiple times to ensure your TV will fit. If the TV is going into your living room, you might want to spring for a larger 65-inch TV. If the TV is going into your bedroom or a guest room, you might consider something smaller like a 32-inch or a 43-inch TV. It all just depends on how much TV your room and entertainment center can accommodate.
    • Refresh Rate: The higher the refresh rate, the smoother the picture will look, especially for gaming. If you see a refresh rate that says 120Hz or 120fps (frames per second), that’s literally how many frames present per second on your screen. This is the best choice if you plan on gaming with a modern console like the PlayStation 5 or Xbox Series X.
    • Resolution: With more modern TVs, you’ll typically get at least 1080p resolution. It’s becoming more customary for larger TVs to have 4K Ultra HD resolution. The4K resolution is 3840 x 2160 pixels, compared to 1080p resolution at 1920 x 1080 pixels. The more pixels you have overall, the crisper the picture is going to look.
    • Android TV vs. Chromecast Support: All of the TVs on this list will give you access to Chromecast right from the start; you won’t need to use a Chromecast dongle. However, there is a difference between Android TVs and TVs with Chromecast built in. With Android TVs, you’ll have a much more powerful Chromecast system because it’s built into the operating system. With Chromecast functionality on top of another smart TV platform, like Vizio’s SmartCast, you’ll still be able to use Google cast features, but you won’t get the benefit of extra Android-specific additions.

Best Overall: VIZIO P-Series Quantum

VIZIO 65-inch P-Series Quantum 4K UHD LED HDR Smart TVVIZIO

This 65 inch VIZIO P-Series Quantum TV is going to be the best option for most people who want a long-lasting investment. It has a 4K resolution with QLED display technology, which means that there is Quantum Color in addition to the Active Full Array backlight tech; this makes for richer color intensity.

VIZIO’s IQ UltraTM processor makes this smart TV ultra fast and more responsive, especially when loading up apps. With SmartCast, you’ll have access to popular streaming services right away like Netflix, Disney+, Prime Video, and more, as well as support for Chromecast technology.

To top everything off, this TV has a speedy 120Hz refresh rate and four HDMI 2.1 inputs, so it’ll be great for gaming as well as simple media streaming. And if the 65-inch option is not large enough for you, the P-Series Quantum comes in a 75-inch model as well.

Best Overall

Vizio P-Series Quantum


This VIZIO P-Series Quantum TV is going to be the best option for most people who want a long-lasting investment.

Another Great Option: Sony A8H Bravia OLED

Sony A8H 55-inch TV BRAVIA OLED 4K Ultra HD Smart TVSony

This 55-inch A8H Bravia OLED TV from Sony is another fantastic option that will give you fantastic colors in an Android TV with Chromecast hardwired in. It has 4K resolution and an OLED display technology combined with Pixel contrast booster for even more vibrant colors. There are four HDMI 2.0 ports. Although there are no HDMI 2.1 ports, this TV does support an HDMI 2.1 feature: Enhanced Audio Return Channel, which will give you Hi Res Audio including Dolby Atmos and DTSX.

Because it’s an Android TV, you can control it via voice commands to Google Assistant and easily utilize Chromecast casting features. Alexa and Siri are also compatible with the TV in case anyone else in your household uses those virtual assistants.

If you want to splurge on a larger version, there’s a 65-inch model available as well.

And if you’re into console gaming, you’ll be happy to know that Sony’s BRAVIA line of TVs has a dedicated Game Mode to help enhance your gaming experience by making it smoother and more responsive. The refresh rate is set at 60Hz and is not a variable refresh rate like the VIZIO P-Quantum Series TV above, so if the ultimate gaming experience is your primary concern, go with the VIZIO.

Another Great Option

Sony A8H Bravia OLED


This 55-inch A8H Bravia OLED model from Sony is another fantastic option that will give you fantastic colors in an Android TV with Chromecast hardwired in.

Best Budget: TCL Class 4 Series

TCL - 75 Class 4 Series LED 4K UHD Smart Android TVTCL

This 75-inch TV from TCL is more affordable, but still gives you 4K HDR resolution and smart voice capabilities with Google Assistant. The refresh rate is 60Hz, so it’s perfect for streaming media, but is a little low if you intend to play a lot of video games on next-gen consoles.

There are three HDMI 2.0 inputs and you won’t have to waste an input for a streaming device; you’ll automatically have a lot of your favorite streaming services available as apps on this TV, like Netflix, Disney+, Hulu, Prime Video, and more.

And although the 75-inch option is way more affordable than others in its size class, there’s also a 55-inch version available that’s half the price.

Best Budget

TCL 75-inch Class 4 Series


This 75-inch TV from TCL is more affordable, but still gives you 4K HDR resolution and smart voice capabilities with Google Assistant.

Best Small: VIZIO D-Series

VIZIO 32-inch D-Series - Full HD 1080p Smart TV (1)VIZIO

While a small TV may not get you the highest resolution or fastest refresh rate, it’s great to have for dorms, guest rooms, or other small areas. This 32-inch TV works with VIZIO’s SmartCast system to give you access to streaming apps like Netflix, Disney+, Prime Video, and more. On top of that, you’ll also have access to Chromecast functionality and Apple AirPlay, if anyone else in your family has an iOS device.

You can use the TV’s smart remote, the SmartCast mobile app, or a virtual assistant like Google Assistant, Siri, or Alexa to control TV functions, like turning it on and off and opening up specific apps.

On the more technical side, this VIZIO TV has 1080p resolution, a 60Hz refresh rate, 2 HDMI 2.0 ports, and an LED backlit display. And if you need a smaller size, there’s a 24-inch version.

Best Small

Vizio D-Series


While a small TV might not get you the highest resolution or fastest refresh rate, it’s great to have for dorms, guest rooms, or other small areas and still have Chromecast functionality.

Best Midrange: Sony X800H

Sony X800H 65-inch TV 4K Ultra HD Smart LED TVSony

This 65-inch Sony X800H will get you quite a few nifty features, like an LED display and a 4K HDR processor, while keeping the price relatively low. You can easily use Google Assistant and Chromecast with this smart Android TV. And with 4 HDMI 2.0 ports, this TV has great connectivity.

Although this Sony TV only has a refresh rate of 60Hz, it comes with MotionFlow XR 240, which is supposed to help make the picture look smoother, especially in games. In fact, there’s even a dedicated Game Mode on this TV that’ll help your gaming experience be more responsive and less laggy.

And if the 65-inch model isn’t the right size for you, don’t worry; the Sony X800H also comes in sizes of 43 inches, 49 inches, 55 inches, 75 inches, and even 85 inches.

Best Midrange

Sony X800H


This 65-inch Sony X800H will get you quite a few nifty features, like an LED display and a 4K HDR processor, while keeping the price relatively low.

Best Premium: VIZIO P-Series Quantum X

VIZIO 85-inch P-Series - Quantum X 4K HDR Smart TVVIZIO

If you want the best of the best and an excellent gaming TV, go for this 85-inch VIZIO P-Series Quantum X. It has 4K resolution, Dolby Vision HDR, four HDMI 2.1 ports, and a VIZIO IQ UltraTM processor to support everything.

The ProGaming Engine automatically optimizes gameplay on your Xbox or PlayStation, making the graphics smoother and the game overall more responsive. One of the best features for gaming on this TV is the variable refresh rate that supports up to 120Hz. On top of all that, there’s AMD FreeSync technology inside as well to help decrease gameplay lag and broken frames.

And if 85 inches is a bit too large for your space, you can still get all these excellent features in a 65-inch model or a 75-inch model.

Best Premium

VIZIO P-Series Quantum X


If you want the best of the best and an excellent gaming TV, go for this 85-inch VIZIO P-Series Quantum X.

Source: https://www.reviewgeek.com/82653/the-6-best-tvs-with-google-chromecast/
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The Article Was Written/Published By: Sarah Chaney

Mystery Science Theater 3000’s Joel Hodgson on Season 13, the Gizmoplex, and Leaving the Show in Good Hands

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After creator Joel Hodgson launched a new Kickstarter, it took just over a day for Mystery Science Theater 3000’s legion of fans to bring back the show (again). This shouldn’t have surprised anybody—there’s a reason why MST3K has stuck around for more than 30 years, and that’s because people love watching robot…

Read more…

Source: https://io9.gizmodo.com/mystery-science-theater-3000s-joel-hodgson-on-season-13-1846768146
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The Article Was Written/Published By: Rob Bricken

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