Archive for HDTV

Half Off Corel VideoStudio Pro X4 Video Editor and DVD Maker

For longer than I can remember, I have been using and recommending Corel’s VideoStudio Pro package for excellent, affordable, and easy-to-use editing of digital video and for making your own DVDs.

Corel never rests in their efforts to keep these product competitive, modern, and up-to-date with the latest home video standards. The latest version, VideoStudio Pro X4, is no exception.

At its regular price of $100 it is still a great buy, but currently you can acquire this software for half that, $50.

VideoStudio Pro X4

VideoStudio Pro X4

Corel VideoStudio Pro X4 is the powerful, creative and easy way to take your video footage from shoot to showfast. Quickly load, organize and trim SD or HD video clips. Easily cut together your production from templates and get creative with amazing effects, music, titles, transitions and more. Explore new Stop Motion Animation and Time-Lapse tools, then export to 3D! Share anywhereon iPhone and other mobile devices, disc, your favorite website or your TV. …

TigerDirect Deals

Skylarking is gearing up for Black Friday, but you can get an early start with these home entertainment and computer specials from TigerDirect.

SONY BRAVIA HDTVs w/FREE Blu-Ray Player.- (11/9 – 11/16/09) or while supplies last!

sonyset1SAVE $545 – FREE SHIPPING – Sony Bravia II 40″ LCD HDTV KDL40V5100 w/ Sony BDP-N460 Network Blu-Ray Disc Player Bundle $954.98. I’ve been wanting to get one of these network blu-ray disc players. Hook them up to your home network to stream movies, videos, music, and more right off the Internet from Netflix, YouTube, and more. Plus you can also play and upscale your standard DVDs to near high definition with this player.

sonyset2SAVE $650 – FREE SHIPPING – Sony 52″ Bravia V LCD HDTV KDL52V5100 w/ Sony BDP-N460 Network Blu-Ray Disc Player Bundle $1,599.98. One more foot of viewing space on your screen with fantastic Sony Bravia features. Too many to list, and, once again, the same great network Blu-ray player as before.

sonyset3SAVE $750 – FREE SHIPPING – Sony 55″ LCD HDTV KDL55V5100 w/ Sony BDP-N460 Blu-ray Disc Player Bundle $1,799.98.

BEST SELLERS.- (11/9 – 11/16/09) or while supplies last!

  • SAVE $40 – FREE SHIPPING – AOC 20″ Widescreen LCD Monitor with 1680 x 1050 pixels of resolution, a 3000:1 Dynamic Contrast Ratio for crisp images with sharp black and white. Has a VGA connector for use with any PC or notebook. All yours for $109.99.
  • SAVE $20 – FREE SHIPPING – ACER Aspire Desktop with an AMD Athlon 2.6GHz processor, 2GB of DDR2 RAM (memory), a massive 320GB hard disk drive for storing all your files. All powered by Vista Home Premium. $249.99. This computer is eligible for a free Windows 7 upgrade, too.
  • SAVE $200 – FREE SHIPPING – HP Pavilion dv2 Notebook with an AMD Athlon Neo 1.6GHz processor, 2GB of DDR2 RAM (memory), a 250GB hard disk drive (storage) with an external DVD-RW (rewriteable DVD burner). The screen measures 12.1 inches. Comes with Windows Vista Premium $549.99 after $50 MIR, rebate expires 01/16/2010. Plus you can get a Windows 7 upgrade for this machine.


    Gateway Win7 Notebook $700

  • SAVE $90 – FREE SHIPPING – HP Pavilion G70 Notebook with an Intel Core2Duo T6500 processor with a 2.1GHz clock speed, 4GB of DDR2 RAM (memory), and 320GB of hard disk space. A large 17 inch screen tops it off. With Windows Vista Premium (64-bit) This is a refurbished unit for $579.97. Upgrade it to Windows 7 while you’re at it.
  • SAVE $150 – FREE SHIPPING – Gateway Notebook Intel Core2 Duo T6600 2.2GHz processor, 4GB of DDR3 RAM (memory), a 500GB hard drive for storage, and a large 17.3 inch LED screen. Equipped with the Microsoft Windows 7 Premium 64-bit operating system for a mere $699.99.

Save 30% on all TV remotes and home theater in a box

Now you can save 30% on all TV remotes and home theater in a box with coupon code 0907K09NFD9Z0N from now until March 12, 2009. This offer is brought to you by Dell.


harmony88You can save on remotes such as the Logitech Harmony 880 (shown). The Harmony 880 features plug-and-play USB connectivity for easy programability and setup, 53 top-mounted hard buttons and 8 on-screen activity buttons, and an interactive display which keeps you  informed of what is going on. You can use the 8 On-screen activity buttons with Smart State Technology to watch movies, listen to music, or enjoy your favorite TV shows. You can also integrate up to 15 devices including HDTVs, DVR Systems, DVD, CD players, VCRs, PVRs, cable or satellite boxes, speaker systems and more. It also includes a sleek docking station that keeps the remote fully charged.

Home Theater in a Box

Assembling the parts for a home theater system can be a daunting task., but Dell simplifies the process with their Home Theater Selector tool. It takes you step by step through the process. It starts by asking what room will your theater system be in, what are the lighting conditions, and where will the screen be. The it shows you some component recommendations based upon your answers.

Save 20% on TVs 40″ or larger

sharp-aquosFrom now until March 18, 2009, or while supplies last, you can save 20% on TVs 40″ or larger with coupon code PV2GJ7$K5TV40Z. Excludes all Vizio TVs. This offer is brought to you by Dell. Dell carries televisions from Sony, Sharp, and Phillips. Be sure to click the link above to take adavantage of the coupon code at checkout.

Other Offers

Sony Bravia 52 inch HDTV $1,999 (Save$600)

Sony Bravia 52" KDL52V4100 HDTV

Sony Bravia 52" KDL52V4100 HDTV

Here’s another one day offer from Dell. The offer becomes available on March 4, 2009 at 6 AM CST and lasts until 5 am CST on March 5, 2009.  Regularly this TV sells for $1,999, but for one day only you can save $600 and get it for $1,399 with free shipping. Here’s the scoop:

One day only! Save $600 on the Sony Bravia 52″ KDL52V4100 HDTV. $1999 before discount + free ground shipping.

The Sony Bravia offers full high-definition with 1,080 lines of vertical resolution (1080p) with the BRAVIA Engine Full Digital Video Processor which provides crisp, clear and sharp images. Its Advanced Contrast Enhancer (ACE) uses real-time image processing to dynamically adjust backlight levels for improved contrast. The HDMI connection on this LCD TV uses one cable and one plug to simplify connections.

Use as PC Monitor

This set is also suitable as a display for a personal computer. A 52 inch screen may sound crazy to some, but businesses and classrooms will find them suitable for presentations and classroom instruction. I have a few friends in NYC who use their TV as a computer monitor so they can play watch YouTube and live streaming Netflix videos in their living room or den. They can also compute from the comfort of the couch. Digital couch potatoes anyone? You can even watch TV while using your computer with the “PC Picture In Picture (PIP)” feature.

Media Extenders

Rear Connections

Rear Connections

Sony’s Digital Media Extender (DMex) offers a digital connection path for optional modules like the Internet VideoLink, as well as other modules you can add in the future.

Digital media extenders allow you to connect to a home network to retrieve digital media files (such as music, pictures, or video) from a personal computer or other media server and play them back on a home theater system or TV. A DMR includes a user interface that allows users to navigate through their digital media library, search for, and play back media files. Different DMRs are designed to handle different tasks. Some DMRs only handle music; some handle music and pictures; some handle music, pictures, and video; while others go further to allow internet browsing or controlling Live TV from a PC with a TV tuner.

bravia2Some other capabilities which are accomplished by DMRs include:

  • Watch, pause, & record live television
  • Play and store music CDs and view album art
  • Play, catalog, and store DVD videos
  • Listen & Pause Digital Radio
  • View, store, and edit digital pictures
  • Create automated picture slideshows

One day only! Save $600 on the Sony Bravia 52″ KDL52V4100 HDTV. $1999 before discount + free ground shipping.


Post Comments or Questions with the link below. Keep up-to-date with Skylarking: By Email or RSS Newsfeed or on Twitter. You can also send questions with my email form.

13 Days to Digital Television

There are 13 more days until the analog television signals are shutdown and the conversion to digital television broadcasts is “completed” on Tuesday, February 17, 2009. Estimates have it that as many as 7 to 12 percent of the television viewers who get their TV signals from analog television antennas are unprepared for the switch. That means anyone who doesn’t subscribe to cable, satellite, or some other pay TV service will be getting nothing but static after Feb. 17.

Just a few days ago a bill to postpone the dealine was defeated, but the House of Representatives is set to vote on that digital TV transition bill again today. The suggest new date for conversion is June 12, 2009. 4 more months or 120 days. (Update: The House voted to pass the bill, so the date for analog TV shutdown has been pushed back to June 12, 2009).

Let’s just assume that the bill to delay doesn’t pass, what do the unprepared need to do, and where does the rest of the world stand on conversion from analog to digital TV?

Options for the Unprepared

  1. Sign up for a pay TV service such as cable or satellite
  2. Purchase a digital television set with a digital tuner
  3. Purchase a digital converter box that connects between their existing TV antenna and TV set. (You can get information on the government’s converter coupon program at

Last month President-elect Barack Obama called on the Congress to delay the transition to give people more time to prepare. The FCC was offering $40 coupons for the purchase of converter boxes, but those funds have run out, and there is talk about directing some of the financial bailout monies into the program.

US and The Rest of the World

The United States isn’t alone in the digital televison conversion crunch, but if we can make the switch as planned next month, we will be the seventh country in the world to switch, but we will be the first superpower to switch.

There are two bright spots in the US: one is in Hawaii, and the other is in Wilmington, North Carolina. Wilmington television broadcasters and citizens completed the conversion on September 8, 2008, while Hawaii switched just this past Thursday, Jan. 15. There are a few people who are still in need of boxes, but the majority of the citizens were prepared.

Six Other Nations Have Made The Switch

  • Luxembourg was the first country on September 1, 2006.
  • Netherlands moved to digital broadcasting on December 11, 2006. About 90% of the households subscribe to cable.
  • Finland switched on September 1, 2007, but cable TV viewers continued to receive analogue broadcasts until the end of February 2008.
  • Andorra completed its switch-off on September 25, 2007.
  • Sweden used a progressive transition working from region-by-region. The conversion started on Gotland on September 15, 2005, and was completed on October 15, 2007, in Scania and Blekinge. Cable distributors are allowed to continue broadcasting analogue television.
  • Switzerland began the switch on July 24, 2006 in Ticino and completed it on 26 November, 2007.

Other Countries Conversion Plans

Most other nations are shooting for 2010 or 2012 for completing their own conversions from analog to full digital broadcasts. Here’s a rundown on the plans and target for some nations:

  1. Australia has delayed conversion until 2010 for some regions and to 2013 for the rest of the country
  2. Brazil has scheduled for June 29, 2016
  3. Canada plans to finish by August 2011 with minor exceptions in remote areas
  4. Croatia and the Czech Republic plans to cinvert by 2010 and 2011 respectively
  5. Denmark, October 2009
  6. France will have completed the switch-off in 2011
  7. Germany started the switch-off in the Berlin area on November 1, 2002 and had planned to complete the switch by the end of 2008. I’m not certain of the status of that switch at this time.
  8. Greece will switch after 2011
  9. Hong Kong plans to be switched off by 2012
  10. Hungary is scheduled for some time between 2010 and 2013
  11. Ireland‘s goal is set for most of the country by 2010 with the rest to follow by the end of 2012
  12. Japan‘s target date is July 24, 2011
  13. Kenya had plans to complete the switch in 2008 bu I have no further news on their status at this time
  14. Mexico initiated a 20-year plan to switch in 2002 with the target year of 2022 for completion
  15. New Zealand estimates completion by 2013 to 2015
  16. Norway started the witch in March 2008 and will the progress region-by-region as Sweden did. Completion is scheduled for the end of this year
  17. Poland plans for either December 2012 or 2014
  18. Portugal is aiming for 2012
  19. Philippines, December 31, 2015. ABS-CBN, the country’s largest TV network is supply converter boxes to the Metro Manila area
  20. Russia plans to be completed in 2015
  21. South Africa started the switch-off in November 2008 in preparation for the 2010 FIFA World Cup and should be completed by mid 2011
  22. South Korea‘s target date is December 31, 2012
  23. Spain, April 3, 2010
  24. Ukraine, July 2015
  25. United Kingdom starting converting in Wales with the first switch off on March 20, 2005, but they were problems and conversion resumed on October 17, 2007. The rest of the UK is scheduled to be completed in 2012

Is Skylarking Prepared?

My home has three televisions, and at least one of them is safe so far, but I’ve got my doubts about the other two; and we’re taking a “wait and see” approach toward them. We have cable TV (Optimum), but only one set is full digital without a box. Another set is “HD Ready” which means it can display HDTV, but it doesn’t have the tuner necessary.  An add-on box will be needed, which we can get from our cable provider. The third set is completely analog, and unless it gets some sort of box attached to it, it will most likely be completely useless unless we get a converter for the rabbit ears, and I don’t think they make one. The ones I have seen are for outdoor aerial antennas with coaxial connections, not screw terminals.

I’m looking forward to what happens today, and in the week’s ahead.

Post Comments or Questions with the link below. Keep up-to-date with Skylarking: By Email or RSS Newsfeed or on Twitter. You can also send questions with my email form.

Toshiba 40 inch LCD HDTV

Toshiba 40 inch LCD HDTV

Toshiba 40 inch LCD HDTV

While I was writing up my news alert for the Samsung 19″ widescreen monitor, I noticed the Toshiba 40RV525U 40″ Full HD LCD TVicon selling for $699 at TigerDirect. Toshiba has been one of my favorite televison manufacturers for over two decades.

I find that Toshiba televison sets have the best black levels of any TV I’ve seen. That is, while black on many TVs looks more grey then black, on Toshiba sets black is truly black.

It all connects with the fantastic contrast controls and color filters available from Toshiba. And this 40 inch, flat panel, 1080P HDTV is no exception.

The Toshiba 40RV525U 40″ Full HD LCD TVicon provides full HD. This TV is large enough for your entire family to sit around and watch their favorite shows or videos. It has DynaLight dynamic backlight control, 3 HDMI digital inputs, and a high-res PC input which makes it ideal for your living room or home entertainment center. Its 1920 x 1080 resolution assures high quality images with fine details and no distortion.

The Toshiba 40RV525U can be yours today — at a price nobody else can touch. Its built-in ATSC/NTSC/QAM digital tuner, allows for viewing standard cable channels as well as crystal-clear off-air digital broadcasts. Its Cinespeed LCD panel delivers 8ms or better response speed to bring you clean, high-action home theater images. Now, every seat in the house is the best seat in the house!

Read these editted customer reviews for the Toshiba 40 inch HDTV:

Awesome Deal! I bought this for a family Christmas present and am loving it. The Picture is great, especially with HD cable input. X-box 360 games Rock and old standard def DVDs look really good. The built in speakers are OK but I would recommend hooking this baby up to a nice surround system to really complete the home theater experience. Installation is a breeze and there are plenty of inputs so you don’t have to worry about constantly switching cables. As stated by another reviewer, this is a Great deal especially for a name brand, 1080 TV.

Awesome LCD T.V., picture quality with HD is just great. For the price of only 749.99 and no tax or shipping costs,[at least in california] this was the ultimate purchase. Not only was it free shipping, it wasn’t supposed to arrive till the 29th, and it arrived Christmas eve! Great bargain, hookup the blu-ray and the PS3 it’s just the bomb. A must buy for anyone who is looking for an affordable 1080p Full HD T.V.

I can just imagine what it would be like to watch DVDs or Blu-ray discs on this set. Or even my old Xbox or PS2 games. (No 360 or PS3 for me yet). Or I could hook up my laptop to the set for some computing in the living room while relaxing on the couch, or maybe play some photo slideshows for the family. (Okay, the laptop idea seems silly, but its the novelty I go for some times).