Sometimes life throws you a curve…or a curved HDTV

Back in December we replaced our aged Sharp Aquos HDTV with a new Vizio model. As is my way, I spent considerable time researching the purchase.

At the time I knew what I wanted to spend, and had some guidance about how large I could go without getting into trouble. We were replacing a 42″ model and Stella did want something too much bigger.

Along the way, I noticed that there appeared to be a passing fashion in curved HDTVs. I say “passing” because in Q4-2016 the curved models were very heavily discounted, where their flat counterparts were not.

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Similarly, I’ve seen curved computer monitors offered at greater discounts than comparable flat models from the same manufacturer. Although the trend is not as pronounced with computer monitors.

I had my doubts about curved displays for general use. My suspicion seems to have been well-founded, since a writer at The Verge today posted a short and rather pointed negative review of their new, curved Samsung HDTV.

It’s not that there’s anything wrong with the display or the electronics. It’s just that the curved geometry virtually ensures that you’re going to suffer a huge amount of glare in any typical viewing environment.

I settled upon a 50″ Vizio M Series (M50-D1) as being the best choice. It was a newer model and very well reviewed in multiple places, including CNet, Reviews.com, Digital Trends, amongst many others. Everyone liked the product, which gave me some confidence.

I may have something to say about the Vizio TV one day soon. It lacks a tuner and comes with a low-end Android tablet as a remote control. So far we’re pretty happy with it.

Do you have one of the curved TVs or monitors? Do you think the curve is a good thing?

The Dead Disk Bounce: Does An SSD Get A Second Act?

My desktop PC is just now passing three years old. When it arrived I imaged the factory installed 2 TB hard drive, replacing it with a Crucial m4 256GB SSD for the boot volume. With a small registry tweak the 2 TB drive became home to the user profiles and related files.

The boot time of the computer was improved by the SSD. Since the boot volume was just the OS & apps it was quick & easy to backup by making an image of that volume. The fact that I make routine backups became important recently, when the SSD failed outright.

In this case I had just installed some updated to the OS, when a reboot was required. However, upon rebooting the system could not find the boot volume. 

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T-Mobile Launches HDVoice Nationwide; Kinda, Sorta, Maybe, A Little Bit

T-Mobile-on-HDVoice.pngLast month at CES the nations #3 mobile carrier launched HDVoice nationally on its HSPA+ network. Here’s the entire press release. Actually, here’s the snippet that you need to track:

T-Mobile today announced that HD Voice is now available on its network nationwide, dramatically improving in-call voice quality for customers with capable smartphones. Customers will hear a more true-to-life voice quality that’s fuller and more natural-sounding with significantly reduced background noise from street traffic, wind and crowd noise. To experience HD Voice, both parties on the call must use capable T-Mobile 4G smartphones such as the HTC One™ S, Nokia Astound and Samsung Galaxy S® III on T-Mobile’s HD Voice-enabled nationwide network. T-Mobile is the first U.S. wireless provider to launch HD Voice nationwide.

It’s very exciting, yes? Well, it is for me as I am both a big fan of HDVoice and a long-time T-Mobile customer.

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Reselling Samsung Galaxy Nexus & Some Accessories

GalaxyNexus-Press-300.jpgJust FYI, I’ve recently listed my Samsung Galaxy Nexus cell phone on E-bay. It’s a great phone and less than a year old. It’s in very good shape. Of course, it’s running the latest Android Jelly Bean, which is v4.2.1. Jelly Bean gives you the 100% pure Android experience with none of the carrier goop to muddle the works or delay firmware updates.

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