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Al Griffin Posted: Dec 12, 2013 8 comments
Q What are the pros and cons of having a 2013 Panasonic plasma TV such as the TC-P55VT60 professionally calibrated? And what should I look for in a calibrator? —Scott Oakley / via email

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Scott Wilkinson Posted: Mar 23, 2012 16 comments
I understand that THX certification is a high honor for home-theater gear, but how important is it? I often see reviews of speakers, receivers, and TVs with very high ratings, but they don't have THX certification. (GoldenEar's Triton Two tower speakers come to mind.) Is this because the product isn't quite up to THX standards, or is something else going on?

Mark Nott

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Scott Wilkinson Posted: Oct 27, 2010 5 comments
Video Skypeasaurus
I'd like to create a four-TV setup in my media room. Rather than purchasing one large TV, I thought I might buy four medium-size TVs and tie them together so each one can display a quarter of a single program or four separate programs such as football games. Leo Laporte uses a similar system with four PC monitors that show his TWiT logo across all four screens or several individual guests, such as yourself, via Skype.
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Scott Wilkinson Posted: Aug 15, 2011 7 comments
I have an old (1997) Bose Acoustimass Lifestyle 12, and the AM/FM/CD player has stopped working. I want to know if I can still use the five cube speakers with a new A/V receiver and a new subwoofer. I hate to throw it all away, and I like the look of the cubes. Can I expect the speakers to work, and will I get a good sound out of them?

Dennis Couch

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Scott Wilkinson Posted: Jul 21, 2009 9 comments
Simple Answer
I've been looking for a device to record television programs from an over-the-air antenna so I don't have to subscribe to cable or satellite for my local stations that I used to record with my VCR. Is there such a device? My VCR still works, but I would prefer something that records HD.
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Scott Wilkinson Posted: Mar 12, 2012 11 comments
I'm trying to develop a home-theater system. I am definitely a neophyte, not an audiophile, and based on your reviews, I fit into the entry-level price range. I have a pair of Bose 401 speakers in very good shape, and I like them. Also, I thought the money saved by using these could be put into other components. I don't know what surround speakers, center speaker, and subwoofer to buy that are compatible with the 401s. I'm also going to purchase a new A/V receiver and Blu-ray player.

Currently, I'm considering the Pioneer VSX-1021 or Onkyo TX-SR609 AVR and the Samsung BD-D6700 Blu-ray player. After that I have no idea what to do. What subwoofer, center channel and surround sound speakers do I buy to go with the Bose 401s? Perhaps the Bose 161s? Or do I just forget it and buy a complete speaker system? If so, which one?

Brent Gardner

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Scott Wilkinson Posted: Sep 26, 2011 9 comments
I'm in the market for a high-quality plasma TV, and I have narrowed the choices to two: Samsung PN64D8000 and Panasonic TC-P65VT30. I have gone to three high-end A/V stores in New York City and was told that the Samsung ranks better than the Panasonic. But I was in a Best Buy store today and was told that nobody comes close to the Panasonic, especially since it is THX-certified. How do you rate these two models?

Michael Quinones

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Scott Wilkinson Posted: May 26, 2011 2 comments
I'd like your help deciding on a new LED LCD TV. I was going to purchase a Samsung UN46C8000 in January based on Home Theater's review, but then I saw the D8000 series at CES and decided to wait for that TV. The UN55D8000 is finally available in my area, but I have not seen many reviews of it other than on CNET, which says it "exhibits poor screen uniformity with excessive brightness variation and banding." Do you have any experience with this TV model? Is it an improvement over the C8000? Is there a comparable television from another manufacturer that I should consider?

Luke Salsman

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Scott Wilkinson Posted: Feb 24, 2012 7 comments
I have a dedicated 400-square-foot theater room with a 7.1 surround system used entirely for movie viewing. I currently have a Pioneer VSX-1019 A/V receiver and plan on replacing it with either an Anthem MRX 700 or Arcam AVR400. I am torn between these two models. The Anthem has great room correction and video processing, while the Arcam has more power and lower distortion. I'm looking for the most enveloping sound experience.

Greg Barnett

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Scott Wilkinson Posted: Jul 27, 2011 1 comments
I bought a new TV based on your suggestions, but I found a problem when hooking it up. I have a Yamaha receiver that has only two TosLink optical digital-audio inputs and one coax. But in order to hook up my computer, I need a third optical input. Can you recommend a TosLink switcher?

Brad McQuade

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Scott Wilkinson Posted: Apr 21, 2009 46 comments
Career Training
I am interested in learning home-theater installation as a career path. Can you suggest a training program I should look into?
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Scott Wilkinson Posted: Jul 22, 2011 1 comments
I've been reading about tube amps and the warmth of the sound they produce. Will a tube amp work with an A/V receiver if there is a digital amp already in the receiver? It seems to me that it wouldn't because the sound has already gone through a digital amp and you can't get back to the original quality.

Bob Spencer

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Scott Wilkinson Posted: Aug 25, 2010 10 comments
More Power!
How is it that tube amps only produce, say, 25 watts of power, and yet they provide enough output to drive speakers rated for hundreds of watts?
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Scott Wilkinson Posted: May 30, 2011 1 comments
I am in the market for some new gear—specifically, a new plasma and receiver. Is Home Theater planning to do a review of the Panasonic VT30 any time soon? I expect it to improve upon the VT25, but I would like to hear it from you or Tom Norton before I get it.

On the receiver front, I would like your opinion on the Denon AVR-4311CI versus AVR-4810CI. What are the differences between the two? In your opinion, do those differences or features justify the 4810CI's extra cost?

Spencer Torgan

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Scott Wilkinson Posted: Jun 08, 2011 4 comments
I'm unhappy with the LCD TV I bought, any suggestions? What do you think of the Vizio XVT3D650SV? Is there a TV that displays closed captions when you mute the volume?

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