Caving to competition from direct broadcast satellite operators, Time Warner Cable plans to offer its customers a digital set-top box (STB) that will let them record, pause, and play back live television programs, much like the devices made by TiVo, Inc. and SonicBlue's ReplayTV division.
<I>Justin Theroux, Naomi Watts, Laura Harring, Scott Wulff, Robert Forster, Brent Briscoe, Maya Bond. Directed by David Lynch. Aspect ratio: 1.85:1. Dolby Digital 5.1, DTS 5.1. 147 minutes. 2001. Universal 21780. R. $32.98.</I>
Imagine that General Motors or Ford or DaimlerChrysler held a patent on the internal-combustion engine, of which only one model was available to vehicle manufacturers worldwide. That's similar to the situation faced by projector manufacturers who wish to use that most wondrous of Texas Instruments technologies, Digital Light Processing (DLP), which packs more than a million micromirrors onto a Digital Micromirror Device (DMD) chip approximately the size of a 35mm slide. (If you're unfamiliar with DMD, be sure to read "From Cathode Ray to Digital Micromirror: A History of Electronic Projection Display," at <A HREF="http://www.dlp.com/dlp/resources/whitepapers/pdf/titj03.pdf">www.dlp.com....)
Jamie Kellner, the <A HREF="http://www.tbs.com">Turner Broadcasting System</A> chairman, who proclaimed that viewers have a "contract" with broadcasters to watch commercials, has predicted that digital video recorders could spell the end of free television programming. Kellner has been widely quoted as saying that viewers who "take too many bathroom breaks" are "stealing the programming."
<A HREF="www.thomson-multimedia.com">Thomson Multimedia</A> announced July 12 that it has joined the Motion Picture Engineering Group Licensing Authority's (MPEG LA) LLC MPEG-2 patent pool as of July 1. The MPEG LA LLC licensing program was launched in 1997 to assure the growth and interoperability of digital video by "providing fair, reasonable, non-discriminatory access to worldwide patent rights that are essential for the MPEG-2 Video and System standards," the announcement stated.
Five years ago to the month, six SGHT writers gathered in the Guide's then home base of Santa Fe, New Mexico, for the magazine's first evaluation of the hottest new development in video: the DVD. Until then, the favored videophile format was the laserdisc. The LD had not only served us well for many years but, arguably, had made home theater a reality. I don't think any of us truly believed that DVD would seriously outperform that trusted 12-inch silver platter.
The fifth generation of any new product cycle is typically when the big benefits begin to reach affordable levels. Madrigal's Proceed AVP2 is very much in this tradition---the new multichannel audio-video surround processor shares plenty of technology found in the $30,000 Mark Levinson #40 Media Console, but the AVP2 sells for only $6,495.
When Tom Norton reviewed the <A HREF="http://www.guidetohometheater.com/showarchives.cgi?19">Toshiba 50H81 HD-ready 16:9 rear-projection television</A>'s 40-inch baby brother, he raved about the picture quality. In the May 2002 issue, Norton sets out to see if the 50-inch upgrade continues the Toshiba tradition.