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This is the place to find out about the latest television and stereo sales, why 4K TVs are great and which surround sound receiver is best for you. Check us out frequently for information about monthly audio/video sales and tidbits about the electronics industry.
Sony vs Samsung TV - Which will get our thumbs up?
Without a doubt, Samsung and Sony have some of the best TVs on the market right now. The technology that each of these companies are utilizing and mastering is remarkable and just plain ‘ol EXCITING. The picture quality and color creation of these TVs is out-of-sight, amazingly realistic, eye-poppingly clear, bright, etc. I could go on and on. Let me tell you a little bit about each manufacturer’s technology and hopefully this will help you decide which is best for you.
Samsung flat screen TVs have always been known for their incredibly bright display paired with a super-wide color spectrum. In their BETTER LED models, Samsung touts technologies such as Dynamic Crystal Color which produces millions of additional color shades compared to other Standard HD TVs. They also possess Ultra Slim Array technology which controls lighting for deeper blacks and brighter whites, etc. In Samsung’s Premium Q-Series line, utilizing Quantum Dots, they developed tech such as Q-Color for over a billion color shades and 100% color volume (zero color-brilliance sacrifice at 100% brightness), Q-Contrast for deep blacks, and Ultra Black Elite anti-reflective coating to further achieve deeper blacks. All of this is with absolutely no chance of picture burn-in. Incredible! One notable downside to the Q-Series TV in general is the loss of color brilliance when viewing from an angle or from the side. If your TV room is set-up in such a way where everyone is pretty much viewing straight on or at least close to it, the Samsung Q series can be a great choice. If you have seats that are off-axis, read on for the advantages of Sony OLED.
Sony is known for their incredible ability to achieve an absolute natural color and lighting balance. Their Triluminos Display technology helps create a very life-like realistic experience and feel. For the ultimate in picture quality, check out the incredible depth, contrast and realism of the picture on Sony OLED TVs. Contrast is a GIGANTIC factor in providing a quality TV picture and thanks to Sony’s OLEDs paired with their Pixel Contrast Booster technolgy, ultimate blacks and bright whites are created resulting in an incredibly detailed and accurate looking picture. All of this is achieved using Sony’s super powerful X1 Ultimate Picture Processor. This is the best-looking TV and technology we have seen to date.
All the above aside, as a quick recommendation:
Here’s some of our IMO recommendations:
Best: #1 – Sony OLED (A9F, A8F)
#2 – Samsung QLED (Q9FN-Q7FN)
Better: #3 – Sony X900F XBR
#4 – Samsung NU8000 OR Sony XBR850F
If you REALLY want your home theater room or surround sound area to ROCK, add a surround sound receiver and home theater speakers. On a limited budget? We'd recommend adding a surround sound system with a modest TV over using a GREAT TV with no sound.
Still have questions about Samsung vs. Sony? Call us and we can go over which flat screen, OLED, LED Q-series or TV option is best for you!
Sony vs Samsung...ask our TV experts! Aire Theater Designs proudly serves all of San Diego County which includes Del Cerro, Talmadge, Kensington, Hillcrest, Mission Valley, Fashion Valley, El Cajon, Blossom Valley, La Mesa, Lake Murray, Friars, North Park, Balboa Park, Clairemont, Kearny Mesa, Mission Bay, Mission Beach, Pacific Beach, Ocean Beach, Point Loma and Downtown San Diego. We also gladly serve those in North San Diego County which includes Carlsbad, San Marcos, Vista, Elfin Forest, Oceanside, Escondido, Encinitas, Cardiff CA, Solana Beach, Del Mar, Cielo, The Bridges, The Crosby, The Lakes, Torrey Pines, Alta Del Mar, Carmel Mountain, Carmel Valley, Coronado, Fairbanks Ranch, Rancho Santa Fe, 4S Ranch, Santaluz, La Jolla, Poway, and Rancho Bernardo. Need help in Murrieta, Wildomar, Temecula, Fallbrook or Bonsall...we're there too. House by Pardee, Shea, Lennar or other builders? We can help!
What is the best wireless speaker to buy? Read below for myths, truths and information.
I have been noticing a common request or inquisition among our customers as of late. This happens from time to time when something new and really different hits the market and generates buzz or popularity. As a company, we strive to keep on top of these new gear releases and learn about them from top to bottom so we can answer any and all questions you all may have. One of the top common interests lately is Wireless Speakers. What exactly are wireless speakers? Can wireless speakers be added easily in my home? How do wireless speakers work? Are wireless speakers truly wireless? What are the Best Wireless Speakers? These are the typical questions we receive quite frequently. I would like to briefly fill you in on the subject, hopefully answer some of the above questions for you, and just give you a better understanding of what wireless speakers are and what they can do for you.
Let me first get this little piece of information out on the table – THERE IS NO SUCH THING AS A SPEAKER WITH NO WIRES. All of the wireless speakers you hear of out on the market have a wire, a power cord. Yes, they all have a power cord. They need power to function. The ‘wireless’ part of these speakers is that the speaker wire that would normally be ran from the audio/video receiver or amp to the speaker is not needed. The wireless speaker gets its signal not from a wire, but from your home’s WiFi network. That brings up an important note that needs to be mentioned, a solid WiFi network is not only recommended, but is crucial for consistent reliability when using wireless speakers.
Want better WiFi San Diego? Eero Pro is the answer!
What are 3 things that we do as humans in the year 2018? In our opinion, these are eat, sleep and rely on WiFi. Unfortunately, many of us aren’t doing too well with #3 and have to deal with BAD WiFi coverage, drops in WiFi signal and slooooooooooooow playback with Netflix and other streaming applications. In the past, getting solid and reliable WiFi could cost thousands of dollars. We’ve become fans recently of a newer WiFi company that may have finally gotten it right. This company is called Eero and they occupy a new place in our WiFi line-up.
For our clients, we want WiFi to be robust, to be easy to manage and to be reliable. You may have read our earlier article on Apple vs. Eero where we weren’t big fans of Eero’s products:
Eero recently came out with a Generation 2 line-up of products and we were anxious to test them out. There were some things we liked about Eero previously but at that time, we felt that they weren’t quite ready for prime time. Present day: Regarding our 3 needs above:
Robust: We hooked up one of the Eero Pro WiFi router units in our showroom and set it up as our main router. We then walked out our front door, travelled downstairs and plugged a 2nd unit into an AC outlet. We then started walking outside our business wondering just how far we could get from our store while maintaining good WiFi speeds and coverage. We got about 80 YARDS from our office and still had decent speeds. This was way above our expectation and got us excited about further testing.
Easy to manage: All network products lose a WiFi signal or drop connection with your wired Ethernet network from time-to-time. This is just a part of WiFi life. However, until you get into BETTER>BEST level WiFi products (this means $$$ in the thousands), there isn’t a way to easily determine what products are working and which aren’t. If you’re not a techy guy/gal, this can be very frustrating. However, Eero has solved this! Eero provides an app that allows us as WiFi professionals to monitor your network and to see if any units aren’t functioning! Here’s an instance of what happened the other day. Example: I got a notification the other day that one of our clients had an issue with their WiFi network. This was AUTOMATICALLY sent from Eero. I called this client and let her know that one of her 3 Eero units was off-line. After being amazed for a minute or two, she mentioned that they had unplugged it while they were painting. She also mentioned that her WiFi wasn’t great in the other areas and now she knew why. This type of visibility allows us to provide much better service to our clients.
Reliability: What do you do when Eero units need to be power-cycled? You do NOTHING! As long as it isn’t the piece wired to the modem, the Eero units power-cycle themselves AUTOMATICALLY! Take it from someone that answers MANY phone calls every day with the same response; “Unplug it…wait 30 seconds and then plug it back in”…this is extremely helpful to ensure that you as a client have a reliable and non-frustrating Internet experience. See our link below about power-cycling.
After our time with Eero...we’re sold and we’re now dealers. If you want better WiFi, let us help you make the right choice regarding your WiFi products and installation. NOTE: These things don’t install themselves. Our network specialists can make this EASY for you. Life’s too short for bad WiFi…give us a call. Aire Theater Designs – Better audio, video and WiFi.
Sony 100" 4K LED TV - One of the biggest TVs you can buy!
Ready for a BIG TV? Do you have any interest in getting the biggest TV you can buy? How about the INSANELY HUGE HD display that the Dallas Cowboys rock in their stadium? It's a 1680" screen that cost $40 million from start to finish to make and install. I know what you are saying...probably too big for your Great Room or Family Room right? How about this then? Our entire team got to see firsthand Sony’s 100” XBR100Z9D TV and it looked amazing! It also has a much more reasonable price tag of just $59,999.99. If that is still too big or the budget is too ridiculous, here's some other options to up your TV game. NOTE: Some of our "Best Buys" are highlighted.
77” XBR77A1E OLED 4K TV: $17,999.99
75” XBR75Z9D reference 4K LED TV: $8,999.99
85” XBR85X850D 4K TV: $5,999.99
75” QN75Q7F Quantum Dot 4K TV: WAS $5,999.99 / NOW $3,999.99
82” UN82MU8000 4K LED TV: WAS $4,999.99 / NOW $3,799.99
77” OLED77W7P Reference OLED 4K TV: $14,999.99
77” OLED77G6P High-End OLED 4K TV: WAS $19,999.99 / NOW $10,999.99
86” 86SJ9570 BIG and BAD 4K TV: WAS $7,999.99 / NOW $6,999.99
Want the biggest TV you can buy? You're in the right place. Let San Diego's BIG TV experts steer you towards video alchemy as well as a heck of a GIANT TV. We've been helping clients with "Better Audio, Video and Home Automation" for almost 12 years. NOTE: TV pricing changes from day-to-day. Check with ATD for up-to-date prices.
Sony XBR65Z9D vs Sony XBR65A1E
Want the best flat screen TV on the market? We just came back from a special event at Sony and we saw the two best TVs on the market right next to each other. Here at Aire Theater Designs, we aren’t big fans of gobbledygook and blahblahblah (do you really need to know about “suboptimal tone mapping”, “judder” and “color channel clipping”). Therefore, here’s the straight shot on Sony’s two new reference sets and which one may be best for you.
Sony XBRZ9D: We consider this to be the best LED TV we’ve seen. This 65” masterpiece is the set to choose if you have:
Sony XBR65A1E: This is Sony’s entry into the OLED TV market. In our opinion, it delivers a KO to the former champ in this arena which was LG’s OLED offering. It is the best OLED we have ever seen. Go with this 65” OLED TV if:
Sony XBRZ9D vs Sony XBRA1E. It’s a battle royale that you can’t lose as a customer. If you want the best TV you can buy…we carry both of them. Give us a call and let San Diego’s Sony LED TV experts guide you to a successful decision between LED vs. OLED.
San Diego Sony TV dealers proudly serve all of San Diego, CA which includes Del Cerro, Allied Gardens, Talmadge, Kensington, Hillcrest, Mission Valley, Fashion Valley, El Cajon, Blossom Valley, La Mesa, Lake Murray, Friars, North Park, Balboa Park, Clairemont, Kearny Mesa, Mission Bay, Mission Beach, Pacific Beach, Ocean Beach, Imperial Beach, Pt Loma and Downtown San Diego. We also gladly serve those in North San Diego, California which includes Carlsbad, San Marcos, Vista, Elfin Forest, Oceanside, Escondido, Encinitas, Cardiff by the Sea, Solana Beach, Del Mar, Alta Del Mar, Rancho Santa Fe, 4S Ranch, Santaluz, La Jolla, Poway, and Rancho Bernardo. Need help in Murrieta, Wildomar, Temecula, Fallbrook or Bonsall...we're there too.
Pandora Premium vs. Spotify...Who will get the universal symbol above?
To be short, you REALLY need Pandora Premium if you love music. However, here’s why you may NOT want Pandora Premium yet and why you have to have Spotify, Napster, Apple Music or related services.
Why you want Pandora Premium: Most of our clients understand how Pandora Internet Radio works. You type in an artist and you then can listen to songs from that band and contemporaries. Ex: The Cure radio will give you songs by The Cure, Depeche Mode, Siouxie and the Banshees, etc. However, most of our clients DON’T understand that Spotify, Napster, Apple Music, etc. provide you with EVERY album that the Cure has ever produced. You can now listen to any album and any song at your leisure. It’s like having the biggest and best jukebox on Earth.
This is why our clients choose to pay $10.00/month for these services as they offer so much more music than standard Pandora Internet radio. The benefit to the new Pandora Premium is that it provides you with this library of artists, albums and music described above. Like the Grateful Dead? I just found 144 albums from them on Napster. Is $10.00/month worth having 144 albums from the Grateful Dead? Not if you hate them but you get the point. Any of these premium services will give you access to all this music.
Why you don’t want Pandora Premium: Do you use an iPad at home? Do you ever use your computer to listen to music? If so, forget about Pandora Premium. You can’t use the “world’s best jukebox” features giving you all of the aforementioned music with these devices. Pandora Premium at this point is only for mobile devices i.e. phones.
Pandora Premium also looks different from device to device. To keep things easy (take it from guys that troubleshoot audio/video issues every day), you want your pages to look the same for the end user, no matter if they are using an iPhone7, Samsung Galaxy phone, iPad or a laptop computer.
Summary: We would wait on Pandora Premium until they get the bugs ironed out. Many of our clients (including us when we are at our office) use iPads and computers to control their music. Until Pandora gets this right, we’d recommend going with Apple Music, Napster, Deezer or Spotify. Which of these is best for you? Stay tuned or check back for our follow-up article describing the pros and cons of these other services.
San Diego Pandora Premium vs. Spotify experts proudly serves all of San Diego, CA which includes Del Cerro, Allied Gardens, Talmadge, Kensington, Hillcrest, Mission Valley, Fashion Valley, El Cajon, Blossom Valley, La Mesa, Lake Murray, Friars, North Park, Balboa Park, Clairemont, Kearny Mesa, Mission Bay, Mission Beach, Pacific Beach, Ocean Beach, Imperial Beach, Pt Loma and Downtown San Diego. We also gladly serve those in North San Diego, California which includes Carlsbad, San Marcos, Vista, Elfin Forest, Oceanside, Escondido, Encinitas, Cardiff by the Sea, Solana Beach, Del Mar, Rancho Santa Fe, 4S Ranch, Santaluz, La Jolla, Poway, and Rancho Bernardo. Need help in Murrieta, Wildomar, Temecula, Fallbrook or Bonsall...we're there too.
Use Hughesnet with one of our Araknis routers and access points for better WiFi
We have received some frantic calls recently concerning Internet service. Some of these people bought new homes and found out afterward that the area they moved to didn’t have cable service. They were only able to get Dish or DirecTV for their TV service and DSL for their internet with a max of 3 Mbps download maximum (in some areas, internet speeds can be even lower). There was another person who called who said that they literally had NO solution for internet at all. Rancho Santa Fe...you hear about the beautiful homes and large properties but did you know they have the slowest Internet in San Diego? Additionally, some communities that have older homes also have older outdated lines and cables running through the streets, delivering incredibly slow internet speeds and cable issues. Fortunately, there now is a solution.
There is a company by the name of HughesNet which provides satellite internet. That’s right, I said satellite internet……different from satellite TV. It is the #1 choice for satellite internet and the company has an A+ BBB rating. HughesNet services homes from coast-to-coast and EVERYWHERE in between. So if you are in one of the situations I mentioned above, we have you covered! HughesNet just recently came out with their new service, Gen5. This gives their customers speeds of up to 25 Mbps download and 3 Mbps upload. This is enough speed to handle your streaming needs such as Pandora, Netflix, or Hulu and more than enough to browse the internet and check your emails and what not. The service plan includes a dual band WiFi router that can get you going on WiFi right away. Aire Theater Designs can then come in and beef up the WiFi signal so that you are getting maximum coverage across your entire property. And the best part of all is the low monthly cost. They have plans with the 25 Mbps download speed that start at a low price of $49.99/month.
So wherever you live, not matter how rural it may be…..YOU DON’T HAVE TO LIVE WITHOUT INTERNET. Give us a call and we can help you get Internet in your home right away. If you have incredibly slow internet speeds and don’t have a wired option in your home for faster speeds, allow us to help orchestrate a HughesNet install today. Happy streaming everyone!
San Diego audio video company Aire Theater Designs proudly serves all of San Diego, CA which includes Del Cerro, Allied Gardens, Talmadge, Kensington, Hillcrest, Mission Valley, Fashion Valley, El Cajon, Blossom Valley, La Mesa, Lake Murray, Friars, North Park, Balboa Park, Clairemont, Kearny Mesa, Mission Bay, Mission Beach, Pacific Beach, Ocean Beach, Imperial Beach, Pt Loma and Downtown San Diego. We also gladly serve those in North San Diego, California which includes Carlsbad, San Marcos, Vista, Elfin Forest, Oceanside, Escondido, Encinitas, Cardiff by the Sea, Solana Beach, Del Mar, Rancho Santa Fe, 4S Ranch, Santaluz, La Jolla, Poway, and Rancho Bernardo. Need help in Murrieta, Wildomar, Temecula, Fallbrook or Bonsall...we're there too.
Cut the cord, San Diego, with a rooftop antenna!
You may have read Part One of our "Cut the cord" saga here: Cut the cord from cable, Part 1 It's now time for Phase 2.
We get most of our desired programs from streaming sources via a Roku streaming device and an AppleTV. The remaining portion of cutting the cord from cable entailed adding an off-air antenna to get our desired channels. The total cost for the antenna and installation was about $300.00. The model is a Winegard 7694 which does a good job at our location in picking up channels from 2 of the broadcasting sources (there are three...one in L.A. on Mt. Wilson, one on Mt. Soledad and one in Tijuana). The important channel or us was CBS for Charger games and the antenna pulled this in nicely.
If you have any form of surround sound system, you will need to connect additional cables from your TV to the audio/video receiver to be able to hear your antenna broadcast through your surround sound set-up. Once this was done, it was time to call Cox cable to tell them to "beat it".
I then called Cox and let my representative know approximately 321 times that I wanted to cancel cable and just keep Internet with them. This would save us roughly $85.00/month. After many "Let me put you on hold" periods, they finally came back to us and gave us our Internet AND cable for the same price as just keeping the Internet! We are now saving about $1,000/year and we are still getting all of the programs that we enjoy viewing.
We then added the Sling application through our Roku device. For $20.00/month, this cool app provides ESPN, AMC, TNT and a bunch of other channels. Now we've got all of the channels we want and the movie sources that we use daily. However, we aren't done yet. We may now shop our Internet options to see if we can save more compared to Cox. HOWEVER, we are big fans of Cox's reliability and Internet speeds and we really don't want to go with ATT or other solutions. We'll have a final update letting you know how this story ends.
Want more information about how to cut the cord San Diego? Wondering which streaming solutions are best? Stay tuned for details from San Diego's most helpful cord cuttingl company, Aire Theater Designs.
Cut the cord San Diego with Aire Theater Designs! We proudly serves all of San Diego County which includes Del Cerro, Allied Gardens, Talmadge, Kensington, Hillcrest, Mission Valley, Fashion Valley, El Cajon, Blossom Valley, La Mesa, Lake Murray, Friars, North Park, Balboa Park, Clairemont, Kearny Mesa, Mission Bay, Mission Beach, Pacific Beach, Ocean Beach, Imperial Beach, Pt Loma and Downtown San Diego. We also gladly serve those in North San Diego County which includes Carlsbad, San Marcos, Vista, Elfin Forest, Oceanside, Escondido, Encinitas, Cardiff by the Sea, Solana Beach, Del Mar, Rancho Santa Fe, 4S Ranch, Santaluz, La Jolla, Poway, and Rancho Bernardo. Need help in Murrieta, Wildomar, Temecula, Fallbrook or Bonsall...we're there too.
Ring doorbell - San Diego smart home
Heard about Ring doorbell and Ring camera products lately? This can be a great way for you to feel secure and to slowly transform your house into a "San Diego smart home". This product line allows you to protect your home and loved ones while you are away AND provides some cool features while you are home.
With Ring you can:
See who rings your doorbell while you are home: This is a nice safety feature that ensures that you aren't answering the door for someone that you shouldn't. You can then...see below.
Use the Ring doorbell as an intercom: You can now talk to whomever is at the front door, even when you are away! This could prevent some of the latest robbery schemes where criminals knock to see if anyone is home before breaking in.
Motion detector: This feature allows you to see anyone in proximity of your front door or other areas that you want to monitor. You can check on packages that are due to arrive, scare off (with the Intercom) someone at your front door or remotely watch areas such as garages, parked cars or a children's nursery (use as baby monitor).
Interested in how to protect your smart home (or not smart) with the Ring camera and doorbell products? Call San Diego's smart home and Ring installation company for a talk! We are San Diego's Ring Doorbell, Ring Camera and Smart Home experts.
Alexa Home Automation - San Diego Universal Remote Control
What is this, the year 2419? Is this Buck Rogers technology? Voice control for our home theater systems? Ladies and gentlemen...it is here! Meet URC Total Control + Amazon Alexa.
A driver has just been completed by URC that allows you to speak to your surround sound system to control it (Universal Remote Control...they are the largest manufacturer of universal remotes in the world). A driver is the conduit that allows the Amazon Alexa pieces to "talk" to the URC universal remote pieces. For example, with and Amazon Alexa piece, the URC Total Control TRC-1080 universal remote and the URC MRX-8 processor, you can control your complicated audio/video system entirely just by saying:
"Alexa...turn on cable TV."
"Alexa...turn on Blu-Ray player."
"Alexa...turn off system."
"Alexa...turn on music throughout house."
We will be integrating this into our home theater showroom today and then taking appointments to display this technology afterward. Interested in how to make your audio/video system work reliably AND how to engage surround sound voice control? Call San Diego's Alexa home automation experts for a showing! We are San Diego's smart home, audio, video and home automation experts.