Archive for the ‘TV Installation’ Category

How to Choose your Home Theater Screen

Wednesday, March 18th, 2015

While you may fall asleep each night dreaming of adding a beautiful theater screen to your home, this isn’t a project you can just rush into.

You deserve to kick back and make your new home theater system the envy of everyone in the neighborhood, but accepting a “one size fits all” approach is not the way to go. Taking your time to understand your home theater screen needs is the only way to make sure your viewing experience is perfect.

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What Television Screen Options are Available for my Home Theatre?

Wednesday, June 11th, 2014

television optionsThe options out there for technology are nearly endless today. The advancements of the past 20 years put us in a great spot technologically for many different things, including home theatre systems. The fact that home theatre systems have become popular at all is a testament to today’s technology. To see a high quality movie, you used to have to make your way to a movie theatre. Now you can relax in your own home and watch your favorite movies whenever you want. Choosing the TV screen that you want for your home theatre system means sifting through all of the new technological information to figure out what the best product for your home is. You can learn about some of these options below.

Plasma TVs
Plasma screens were really popular a few years ago. They’re still good televisions and do the job well, but they’re not top of the line technology. The nice part about them is that they’re still great TVs  and the price has reduced with the introduction of LED and LCD TVs. They have good lifespans and you can usually get a big plasma TV for less than some of the newer technology. One of the only drawbacks of plasma is the “screen burn” effect caused by the burning of phosphor to display the picture.

LED Backlit TVs
If you pay attention to environmentally and economically efficient products, you’ve probably heard of LED lighting. LED lights use very little energy compared to other light sources and can save you money over time. Plus, LED backlighting is fairly even and bright. The picture will be bright and vivid, but keep in mind that you’re generally going to pay more for this type of lighting. It’s a great option if you’re looking to splurge on your home theatre system and want one of the best products on the market.

LCD Panels
Most LED backlit TVs are LCD, but many of them are also lit by cold cathode lights. These are the most common type of TVs used today. The biggest benefit that they offer over plasma screens is that they don’t suffer from screen burn since the lights are cold rather than hot. They’re not quite as bright as LED backlit panels, but they’ll still give you decent contrast. One of the advantages that LCD TVs have actually applies to all of these televisions – they’re light, especially compared to most TVs from the 80s and 90s.

These are just a few of the options that you have when choosing a TV screen for your new home theatre system. To learn more about your different audio/visual options for your new (or revamped) home theatre system, give us a call at 410.242.0000 or feel free to contact us via the website so we can help you with all of your home audio/visual needs!

What are the Benefits of DirecTV Installation for Your Business?

Thursday, May 15th, 2014

DirecTV marylandWaiting rooms and offices can get pretty boring, especially when you’re stuck sitting in them for any length of time. DirecTV can make any wait a little bit better. Nearly any business can benefit from DirecTV installation. How, you ask? Let’s examine a few different businesses and ways that a customer experience can be improved by access to entertainment!

Medical offices – Sometimes doctors run behind. Most people expect to be sitting in a waiting room for a while before they even get in to an exam room. Sitting in an office with a lot of magazines that sick people have rifled through isn’t exactly ideal. Installing DirecTV in the waiting room (and even in the exam room) can keep your patients busy, happy, and less focused on the fact that they’re spending time waiting, rather than being seen. You can also use a DirecTV system to show informative videos and teach patients about illnesses and conditions!

Gyms – Do you ever hit the last third of your cardio routine and wish more than anything that you had something to distract you from that last 10 minutes or so? TVs are great assets for gyms. It allows people to watch the shows that they love while getting a health workout in. Plus, since most shows are either in 30 minute or 60 minute increments, many patrons will take advantage of that “timer” to accomplish their workout routine. Getting absorbed in something else will help people push through workouts and cause them to keep coming back for your awesome big screen TVs and hardcore workouts.

Salons – Sitting in a chair for half an hour while someone consistently snips at your hair can be really dull, especially if you don’t have anything to talk about with your hairstylist. Adding TVs to your salon or nail spa will help entertain your guests while you can get all of their work done without worrying about the added distraction of carrying on a conversation with a near-complete stranger. A DirecTV package can also give you options to let each guest choose what they want to watch and listen to. A personalized, luxurious experience will keep your customers coming back.

Offices – While it may not be the most productive thing to put a TV directly in the office, putting on (or multiple) in break rooms and conference rooms can be beneficial. It will make breaks more enjoyable for your employees and can actually make conferences more productive. The right channels show informative programs that are great for teambuilding or demonstrating something.

Help entertain and education customers and employees of all different businesses. DirecTV installation from Down to Earth Communications will give you a leg up on your competition and help keep people satisfied at the same time – how great is that? To set up a consultation and get started with DirecTV installation, give us a call at 410.242.0000 or feel free to contact us via the website. We can’t wait to help you with your DirecTV needs!

Key Components of Home Theater Systems

Saturday, July 14th, 2012

home theaterHome theaters have been around for a while, but haven’t made it to every household just yet. Why? There could be many reasons, such as price, availability of space or some misconceptions about this technology. Down to Earth Communications is here to shed light on home theater systems and help you make an informed decision if you plan on purchasing one.

What is a home theater?

Essentially, a home theater is an arrangement of various audio and video equipment designed to replicate movie theater experience. Going to movies is fun, but why pay money if modern technology made it possible to enjoy theater-like experience in the comfort of your own home? The only minor inconvenience is that you’ll have to wait till a particular movie comes out in your preferred media format.

What does a home theater system consist of?

Video. Depending on your budget and available room space, you can opt either for a big-screen TV or a high-resolution projector. The size and picture quality matter most, so choose wisely! You can even pick a device with 3D capability to further enhance your movie experience.

Audio. As a Maryland surround sound installation service provider, we know that no home theater is complete without a surround sound system. The sound is just as important as the picture, because it often helps follow the storyline and add dimension. A surround sound system works by splitting the sound into multiple channels that carry it to corresponding speakers. Here are most common components of a surround sound system:

-          Front, center and rear speakers may come in different shapes and sizes. It is recommended to have a minimum of 4 speakers, but the more you install – the better the surround effect.

-          Subwoofers create deep bass sounds and are responsible for that rumble under your feet when a train passes by in the movie.

-          Audio/Video receiver is a central hub of the surround sound system with a job of receiving signals from various input devices, decoding, amplifying and directing the sound into right speakers.

Media devices. You will need to install devices that would read and play your movies depending on their format. We are talking about Blu-Ray players, DVD players, VHS players, gaming consoles and cable/DVR boxes. The good news is that you don’t need to have one of each (what a clutter that would be)! Most Blu-Ray players also play DVDs, some gaming consoles play both formats, and many smart TVs come with built-in Netflix app or could be easily connected to stream media from your laptop.

You can buy a home theater that has already been put together, or you can build your own by combining components from different manufacturers. If you go with the second option, make sure all the parts are compatible with each other.

As a Maryland home theater installation company, we know that any installation project can be stressful and take a lot of your valuable time. Moreover, you risk ending up with a mess of wires and unsecure connections. If you decide to employ a professional, let us know and we’ll help you design a perfect home theater layout and will perform a fast and clean installation.

Plasma, LCD and LED TVs: What’s the Difference?

Sunday, July 1st, 2012

different kinds of tvsThankfully, Cathode Ray Tube (CRT) TVs are no longer our only option. Moreover, you can’t find those dinosaurs on the store shelves anymore, because they have been replaced by slick modern flat screen models. No doubt this is great news, but now we have all these new HDTV technologies to choose from – things got complicated!

 

Down to Earth Communications is here to show you the key differences between the leading TV technologies on today’s market. Let’s start with the inner workings.

LCD TVs

Liquid Crystal Display (LCD) technology employs liquid crystals that are illuminated by lamps (namely Cold Cathode Florescent Lamps), and as the white light passes through, the image is created.

Plasma TVs

Plasma technology is very intricate and involves gases (neon and xenon) that get excited by electrical current which causes them to emit UV light, The UV light strikes red, green and blue phosphors also located in the screen making them produce visible light.

LED TVs

Light Emitting Diode (LED) technology basically improves on LCD technology by introducing a new light source: light emitting diodes instead of lamps.

So we have these 3 different technologies competing for your attention and spot in your house. As a Maryland TV installation professional, we can tell you for sure there’s no difference between these TVs when it comes to installation. However, there are major differences in user experience and other areas:

Contrast ratio and Brightness

Plasma will give you the best contrast ratio; however, plasma TV might be more suitable for darker rooms, because it doesn’t stand out in bright light as much as LED and LCD. Plus, Plasma is known for its supreme rendering of black colors, which is perfect for watching in the darkness or with deemed lights.

Energy consumption

Due to its reliance on electricity for illuminating every screen pixel individually, plasma TVs consume more power. LED and LCD panels would be a better choice if energy efficiency is an important factor for you. But plasma technology keeps evolving, and it won’t take long for it to catch up to the competitors in this department.

Viewing angle

Plasma TV is a winner in this category because it allows for great picture quality and color rendering regardless of the viewing angle. So when you have a lot of people watching TV from different spots, everyone can enjoy the beautiful picture. LCD has the narrowest viewing angle of the three.

Color and detail

When it comes to the colors, LED and plasma TVs are in the lead, but not by far. All modern TVs are well capable of producing life-like images, and if you are not an expert, it’s very difficult to spot the difference. However, when it comes to detail and motion flow, nothing can beat plasma just yet. So if you like watching sports and playing video games, plasma TV will provide the most enjoyable experience with minimal motion blur.

Lifespan

LCD technology is the oldest of the three and has proven quite durable. Because LED TVs populated the market only a couple years ago, their lifespan hasn’t been determined yet. As for the plasma TVs, they seem to die faster than their counterparts, but manufacturers keep working on extending their lifespan.

As you can see, there’s no single winning TV technology that everyone should buy. If you are really picky about the picture quality, can notice the slightest imperfections, and enjoy watching sports, then plasma TV is the way to go. However, if you are concerned about lifespan and energy consumption, and don’t care much about tiny flaws, then LED or LCD would be a better choice. Be sure to research different brands and read consumer reviews before making a purchase. And if you need TV wall mount installation in Maryland, don’t forget to contact us and you’ll be enjoying your new TV in no time.

5 Mounting Options for Your Flat Screen TV

Wednesday, June 6th, 2012

remote control Gone are the days when all you could do with your TV is put it on a table or hide that enormous monstrosity in the armoire. Modern TVs are so light and so thin – there are plenty of locations where you could place them. Here are the most common mount styles:

1) Table stand. It is probably one of the most common and least labor-intensive ways to mount a TV. Every TV comes with a removable stand that allows the unit to sit upright. To ensure the best viewing experience, pick a table that will (1) securely support your TV and (2) is a good height. The good height means that the center of the screen is level with your eyes allowing for comfortable watching without straining your neck. Table, console or any other type of stand also provides plenty of storage for your DVDs, remotes, gaming and TV accessories. (Photo by apdk)

2) Wall mount. Mounting your TV on the wall requires drilling a few holes and concealing couple of wires. We have performed plenty of TV wall mount installations in Maryland, and can assist you with choosing the best mount option for your needs:

  • Flat mount means the TV is mounted flat on the wall protruding several inches off the wall’s surface depending on TV’s dimensions. This is more of a permanent mount, because it would be problematic to change TV’s position without unscrewing the entire structure.
  • Tilt mount allows tilting the screen up and down to reach the optimal viewing angle. This arrangement is perfect if you decide to install TV higher on the wall.
  • Articulating mount provides even more flexibility. It lets you extend TV off the wall and move it to the left or right with the help of a motion arm. This is a good solution for awkward tight spaces where there’s no usable wall space directly in front of the seating area.
  •  In-wall mount is pretty much equivalent to installing your TV in a niche. TV that is flush with the wall visually enlarges the room.

3) TV cart is not a common installation method for our residential customers, but it works great for schools and businesses. Because TV is mounted on a wheel cart, it can be easily transported from room to room and moved out of sight when it’s not being used.

4) Ceiling mount is typically the last resort for homeowners when all the other installation options are out of question. It can work for bedrooms and bathrooms assuming you are watching TV from a sharp angle lying down on the bed or relaxing in a tub. Unlike private residences, commercial properties such as bars, restaurants and business waiting areas are common places to utilize ceiling mounts.

5) Hidden TV. You can opt in to hide your TV in an armoire or a more elaborate console structure. A variety of manual and motorized lifts are available to make your TV quietly disappear with a touch of a button. It is a great way to de-clutter any room and a fancy touch that will have your guests talking.

At Down to Earth Communications, we perform all kinds of TV installations in all kinds of places, no matter how tight or spacious they are. Get in touch if you need any help mounting your TV or setting up home theatre network.