About Robert E Kraus

Robert E Kraus has a background in Computers, Internet Technology and Home Electronics. Currently working in the Information Technology field and also consulting for Home Electronics users. He is also the owner of The Conch Tech and My Conch Life and a contributing author on both sites.

Here Come 4K Broadcasts from Fox Sports, Starting February 17th for DirecTV Clients

Stephan Jukic – February 15, 2017 After failing to broadcast Superbowl LI in 4K UHD despite the fact that they recorded the game in the resolution or higher with more than 2 dozen cameras, Fox Sports is now moving towards immediate implementation of 4K sportscasts as of this February […]

Top 6 Things People Connect to a HDTV

Here are the six most common thing to connect to a HDTV. This step by step will give you a good idea on what you will need to connect your new TV.

1. Connect an Old VCR with no Tuner

Yes, many folks still want to connect their old VCR to the new HDTV. ConnectingAVJacks.jpgyour VCR to your new HDTV isn’t all that hard. Just locate the round yellow video connector or RCA Jack, then look for the audio jacks which are colored red and white, below. Here’s the tricky bit, on most modern HDTV’s the yellow jack isn’tFig-2---Component Video Jack there. Manufacturers merged the Composite (yellow) connector and the Component Y (green) connector, Figure 2. See how it’s green? Some manufacturers paint a yellow ring around it some do not. Either way the jacks should be labeled “Component/AV In”. Once connected, you just change the TV input to A/V, Composite or Video which ever word your TV uses.

2. Connect My Computer or Laptop

Connecting a laptop or a computer is also fairly easy. Every PC or Laptop made VGA.jpgbefore about 2010 or so has a VGA connector. With a few exceptions, HDTV’s are also equipped with one. You can buy various length VGA Cables pretty much anywhere they sell computers. If you have an Apple Computer here is how you connect it. You set the input on your TV to VGA or Computer. Read more!

Top Articles published on The Conch Tech in November 2013

Here are the top articles published in November 2013

TV Mounts - Things to Consider Before Installation


Mounting your television isn't a difficult thing. Here are some things to consider before you start.

10 Innovative And Economical Ways For Managing Cables In Your Home


Do you have a messy tangle behind the home entertainment system, or scary knots of cables under the desktop computer in the home office. Read on to find innovative ways to manage them.

The Death of Plasma: Panasonic Throws in the Towel


If you were thinking of purchasing a TV this season and a Plasma TV was on that list, you better hurry up and get to the store. Find out why here..

Creepy – Is LG Collecting Data on its Smart TV Owners?

Smart LG Home TheaterLast December I published an article about the Samsung Smart TV’s having a security flaw that allowed hackers to enter and download your personal information. Now we have LG downloading your personal viewing choices and sharing it with advertisers.

Earlier this month an article was published on DoctorBeets blog telling all about how the author discovered that LG was spying on him.  It all started when he noticed an ad on his Smart Menu Screen.  He dug a bit into it and found a LG corporate video describing their collection practices. Read more!

Top Articles for October 2013

These are the top articles for October 2013.

5 Creative Uses For A Home Projector


If you're looking for some fun things to do as a family, it's time to think beyond movies or TV shows. Sure, that's fun, but where is the imagination? If, instead, you turn to the projector, you now open up a world of opportunities.

4 Simple Ways To Connect Your Mobile Device To Your Massive TV Screen


Instead of fiddling around with a small screen people can now hook their mobile device up to their main TV. Here are a few different ways this can be accomplished.

The Best Sites To Watch Your Content Wherever You Are


If you love to watch TV shows and movies then it's a great time to be alive. Numerous companies are now offering Streaming videos over the net to any device be it a Smartphone, tablet, PC or Mac, giving you the flexibility to watch what you want, when you want, where you want. Let's take a look at the top 6 content providers and why you should consider them..

The Death of Plasma: Panasonic Throws in the Towel

TC-P65VT50If  you were thinking of purchasing a TV this season and a Plasma TV was on that list, you better hurry up and get to the store.  Why? because one of the best plasma TV makers is calling it quits.

Rumors were in the wind for months now.  Panasonic, the maker of the recently released VT60 and ZT60, will be out of the plasma business by 2014, or while supplies last.

…[I]n order to create a business structure that can respond to changes in the business environment and to accelerate the growth strategy of the company, the company will end the production of plasma display panels(PDP) in December 2013…-Panasonic Corporation

Panasonic enjoyed a strong demand for it’s plasma’s worldwide. Their products always received high acclaim and good reviews. Never the less, Panasonic feels that “drastic changes in the business environment and a declining demand” for plasma’s made it necessary to stop production.  Panasonic has already stopped or suspended production its Amagasaki P5 and Amagasaki P4 factories. The last factory, the Amagasaki P4 Factory, will stop production at the end of March 2014.

Plasma’s are popular because of their better contrast ratios, faster refresh rate, better overall picture quality and lower prices. LED’s have been improving over the years and had narrowed the performance gap. Now with the arrival of Ultra and OLED HDTV’s that gap has been closed to the point where they may surpass the picture quality of plasma, but at a price.

If your thinking Samsung or LG will pickup the torch, you might be right.  Samsung and LG have already announced they will be bringing new Plasma models to the 2014 International Consumer Electronics (CES) show in January. This year Samsung released it’s stunning F8500 Plasma HDTV. So, for at least the next year, Plasma’s will still be on the shelves.

Bottom line is if you want what I consider to be the best of the plasma TV’s made and at a good price, you had better get to your favorite online retailer or local box store and pick up a Panasonic Plasma HDTV’s before it goes the way of the Dodo Bird.

Here is the full press release.

Samsung Announces Smart Media Player – Make any TV Smart

Samsung Smart Media Player (GX-SM530CF)

Samsung Electronics recently announced the availability of the Samsung Smart Media Player. With this device you can make any TV into a Smart TV using Samsung’s Smart Hub Interface. This adds to Samsung’s line of Smart Media players, last week they announced the HomeSync Media Hub.

With our new Samsung Smart Media Player, we’re providing consumers with an all-in-one solution that makes the TV-watching experience ‘smarter. This great product brings the Samsung Smart TV experience to any digital TV, giving customers a seamless home entertainment experience that combines live cable content and Smart TV applications all in one device. – Jim Kiczek, Director of Digital Audio and Video at Samsung Electronics America

 

Inside the box

The Smart Media Player comes pre-installed with more than 100 Smart Apps including Amazon Instant Video, Netflix, VUDU and YouTube.  This gives you many choices, besides video, for entertainment such as games, news and social sites like Facebook and Twitter.

S-Recommend is also included. S-Recommend a Samsung app that provides suggestions on what to watch based on your viewing habits. S-Recommend becomes smarter the more you use it and will even queue up shows for you to watch it thinks you might find interesting.

Also included is AllShare, this app allows you to share your content between your Smart Phone, Tablet and the Player. Another included feature is Screen Mirroring.  This feature allows you to project the screen on your compatible tablet or smart phone to your big screen TV.

The Samsung Smart Media Player (GX-SM530CF), will be on sale starting October 23rd and the retail price will be $149.99.

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Samsung Introduces HomeSync October 6th.

HomeSync is the latest product added to the Galaxy family of products.  The device allows sharing of content between all of your compatible home electronics.  Take a picture from your phone while you’re on the road and those at home can see it in seconds on their tablet or even the family HDTV.

HomeSync is a really exciting addition to the Samsung portfolio. As the number of smart devices that a person owns continues to grow, sharing and streaming content will become even more popular, creating demand for somewhere that all this content can be stored safely and readily accessed. HomeSync was borne from our experience across multiple markets, including mobile, digital imaging and TV, enabling us to create a single connected media environment, where people’s content is accessible at any time through whichever screen they choose.” – Simon Stanford, Vice President of IM division, Samsung Electronics UK & Ireland


HomeSync will support an external HD, so you can continue collecting content even if you fill up the built-in 1 Tb drive. File Encryption is also included  along with Android Jelly Bean with full access to Google Play and all its Apps.

The Interface is said to be similar to that of a Galaxy Tablet so it’s easy to use. HomeSync can also support up to 5 Samsung accounts having 6 devices each. You can add personal filed for more privacy.

The device will be available at Best Buy, Amazon and others on October 6 for $299.

The Samsung Smart Media Player (GX-SM530CF), will be on sale starting October 23rd and the retail price will be $149.99.

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Top Articles for August 2013

These are the top articles for August 2013. Covered in these articles: The new high-end soundbar from Sony. The new OLED HDTV’s which are now making their way into the Consumer Electronics Market. Finally connecting your MacBook to your TV.

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OLED TV: Must-Have Gadget Or Waste Of Cash?


Some people always have to have the latest gadgets in their home. Well if televisions are your big thing, you will be delighted to hear that the next generation of TV is now available to buy in the stores. The only problem is that you need a shed load of cash to be able to afford one. So what is OLED TV and is it worth the phenomenal price tag?

How to Connect your Macbook to your TV


Your MacBook can get along great with your TV, as long as you make the right connections. Here's all you need to know to connect your MacBook to your HDTV.

MacBook
HT-SB7

Sony’s new $1,299 HT-ST7 Soundbar


Sony announces a high end sound bar. The $1,299 HT-ST7 looks impressive and Sony even went so far as to call in award winning Paul Ottoson according to Endgaget.com.

Sony’s new 4K Ultra HD Video Download Service

Sony XBR-X900A 4K Ultra HD Video Service

credit – Sony

Sony made several announcements at IFA 2013 this year.  One of them was the news of a new Video Download Service for Ultra HD content.  Video Unlimited 4K Service is the first 4K Ultra HD only video download service.  Those of you who ran out and bought a 4K or Ultra HD TV will now have something to watch in native 4K mode. Read more!