Al Griffin

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Al Griffin Posted: Dec 18, 2014 2 comments
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Q I bought a Benq W1070 projector and plan to install it in my 22-foot long by 18-foot wide by 8.5-foot high basement. The room was pre-wired by the previous owner and there’s a ceiling mount with an electric outlet close to it. The mount is about 16 feet away from the front wall. Is that too far for this projector? I was originally planning to buy a 120 inch screen, but it appears that I would need at least a 150 to 170 inch screen for that distance.—Srikanth Athipatla

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Al Griffin Posted: Dec 10, 2014 6 comments
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Q I just moved into a new house. Because of the way my home theater room is configured, the distance between the surround sound receiver and HDTV is about 30-40 feet. How would you suggest I make this connection? What about wireless solutions? —Joe Feller

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Al Griffin Posted: Dec 08, 2014 0 comments
Got a tech question for Sound & Vision? Email us at AskSandV@gmail.com

Q I transferred video from a VHS tape to a DVR/DVD recorder a few years ago but did not finalize the disc and now no longer have the machine. My current DVD player, a Magnavox, won’t even recognize the disc, and my computer won’t either. Is there any way now that I can finalize that disc? —Joe Simone / via e-mail

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Al Griffin Posted: Dec 04, 2014 0 comments
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Q How important is a TV’s video processing? Sound & Vision’s recent review of the Vizio P65ui-B2 UHDTV gave it a poor rating for that category. My Oppo Blu-ray player has excellent video processing. Can a disc player’s video processing overcome a TV’s shortcomings in that area? —David Hall

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Al Griffin Posted: Nov 25, 2014 4 comments
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Q I plan to buy a KEF R300 surround speaker system and an Anthem MRX 310 AV receiver and use the system almost exclusively for watching movies. I’m getting older, and movie dialogue sometimes gets lost. (My wife says I don’t listen sometimes, but that is another subject.) What are your thoughts and recommendations here? —Michael Wood / via e-mail

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Al Griffin Posted: Nov 19, 2014 4 comments
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Q Some of my friends argue that spending extra money on Blu-ray Discs is unreasonable since DVDs offer almost equal picture quality for less money. Worldwide, DVDs sell much better than Blu-rays, which many people still consider to be a format for videophiles. Do you think it’s possible that DVDs will ever disappear from the market? —Tomek Ciecwierz, Warsaw, Poland

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Al Griffin Posted: Nov 17, 2014 2 comments
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Q I am building out a dedicated 7.2-channel home theater and was planning on buying dipolar surround speakers to help “spray” sound along the side and back walls. After reading a few articles on Dolby Atmos, however, it seems that direct-radiating speakers would be the more appropriate option since they can better pinpoint objects in the room. Am I correct in thinking that direct-radiating speakers would serve better in an Atmos environment, or do I have things totally wrong? —Adam Tremai / via e-mail

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Al Griffin Posted: Nov 13, 2014 8 comments
Got a tech question for Sound & Vision? Email us at AskSandV@gmail.com

Q Back in the days of VHS, movies were formatted to fit 4:3 aspect ratio TV screens. Why can't widescreen movies on Blu-ray be formatted to fit today’s 16:9 TV screens? I don't like to use my player’s zoom function to remove black letterbox bars; it degrades the picture.—Alfred Escoto

Al Griffin Posted: Nov 12, 2014 3 comments
Performance
Features
Ergonomics
Value
PRICE $2,200

AT A GLANCE
Plus
Impressive black depth and uniformity
Excellent color
Good set of streaming options
Low-glare screen

Minus
Picture processing adds edge-enhancement, noise
Poor handling of images with film grain
Washed-out-looking highlights

THE VERDICT
Vizio’s P-Series comes with a full-array LED backlight and 4K Netflix streaming, but its performance is marred by overly aggressive video processing.

Editor’s Note: This review has been updated following a recent firmware revision. Please see postscript at the end of the review.

Vizio is known for making TVs that consistently beat the competition on price—often by a significant margin. In some cases the performance of Vizio’s sets also ends up being equal to or better than the competition, though the company’s track record on that count isn’t as consistent. The last two Vizio HDTVs Sound&Vision tested, the 2014 entry-level E- and step-up M-series models, delivered very good performance at an affordable price. Now the company’s P Series, its first UHDTVs for 2014, have hit the street. It should come as no surprise that the price here is nice: the 65-inch P652ui-B2 model I tested lists for $2,200. But does Vizio’s budget bigscreen UHDTV continue the company’s streak of high performance/low cost? Let’s take a look.

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Al Griffin Posted: Nov 06, 2014 6 comments
Got a tech question for Sound & Vision? Email us at AskSandV@gmail.com

Q Is there any benefit to using a bias light behind a flat-panel HDTV? —Mike Hassold

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