I've now crossed into my eighth page of apps on the iPhone. Frankly, the time is quickly approaching when I'm going to have to delete good apps from my iPhone just so I can download more. To make matters worse, the apps keep on coming at the iTunes Store, as more developers figure out ways to utilize this unique platform--and they keep getting better! I haven't deleted an app that I've paid for yet, but I believe that the time might be coming when money spent will not be enough of a reason to keep an … Read more
According to a recent New York Times article, 80 percent of people who make New Year's resolutions abandon them before Valentine's Day. But we can all beat the odds, right?
This year, I'm hoping to make some sense of my digital music collection. I'm a big fan of the audio-tracking site Last.fm (my username is "field_day" if you want to friend me), but I'll often get an error when trying to "scrobble" a song because my ID3 information is missing or erroneous.
ID3 is a metadata format within MP3 files … Read more
I was a bit surprised at how many of you disliked the recent LiquidTV TiVo PC offer. However, I can take a hint, so here's a much cheaper TV-on-PC solution: Newegg has the AverMedia AverTVHD Volar USB TV tuner for $24.99 shipped (after rebate). Make sure to apply discount code EMCABAGDJ to get that final price.
For those unfamiliar with the concept, a TV tuner lets you watch live TV (via cable or antenna) on your PC. You can also record and time-shift (pause) shows using bundled software or a third-party solution like Windows Media Center or SnapStream … Read more
Many times in this space I've sung the praises of TV tuners, which let you watch and record shows on your PC, TiVo-style. Well, now you can get more than just the style: Nero's LiquidTV TiVo PC brings the actual TiVo software to your system.
The retail package includes the software, a TiVo remote, a USB IR receiver, a one-year subscription to the service, and an HD-compatible USB tuner. Normally it sells for $199.99 (way too steep, IMHO), but right now you can get the LiquidTV TiVo PC for $103.99 shipped.
The TiVo software probably needs … Read more
If you're open to browsing thousands of Internet radio stations from around the world, you've come to the right place. Tuner Internet Radio for iPhone has a great (but not flashy) interface for browsing stations by musical genre or popularity, and for searching a station by name. Apart from bookmarking favorite stations and glancing at the bit rate next to the station name, there's not much else you can do except sit back and enjoy the beats (and perhaps the visualizer); that's with or without headphones, as long as you jack up the sound to enjoy … Read more
As someone who's never been a big fan of AM/FM radio, I never really saw the advantage of HD Radio. At first, the all-digital format promised little more than CD-quality digital transmission of existing stations. Then the broadcasters added multicasting, offering "HD2" stations that weren't available at all on analog hardware. They even sweetened the deal by temporarily reducing or suspending commercials on those HD2 stations (though that program has recently ended).
But the thing that most retarded the growth of HD Radio adoption was the price of the hardware. The earliest tabletop HD Radios, for instance, cost upward of $500--not exactly an impulse purchase. In the years since, prices have tumbled: tabletop and in-car models hit $200 last year, and newer HD-enabled clock radios can be found for less than $100 now. Still, as far as in-home options go, none of the models we'd tested had really blown us away.
That's finally changed with the Sony XDR-F1HD.… Read more
Hey, remember the KWorld PlusTV ATSC 340U? (With a name like that, how could you forget?) It's a TV tuner that plugs into a USB port and pulls down over-the-air HD signals or unencrypted QAM signals (which are delivered via cable). The last time I posted it, Newegg was selling it for $14.99 after rebate, plus six bucks for shipping. Well, now you can get it for $14.99 after rebate, plus zero bucks for shipping!
This would make a killer second tuner for anyone already running, say, Windows Media Center with an analog tuner. The PlusTV is … Read more
The KWorld PlusTV ATSC 340U is a USB TV tuner. It can receive both over-the-air digital signals and unencrypted QAM signals (which are delivered via cable). Either way, it's your chance to watch and record HDTV on your Windows PC. Newegg is selling the 340U for an impossibly cheap $14.99 (after a $20 mail-in rebate). Shipping will run you six bucks.
Keep in mind that this is strictly a digital tuner, meaning if you plug in a cable-TV cable, you'll receive only QAM stations. (If you're not up to speed on QAM, check the Wikipedia entry.) … Read more
The Hauppauge WinTV-HVR-950, a "hybrid" TV tuner (meaning it can tune in over-the-air digital broadcasts or standard cable), normally sells for $79. Dell's Home store has it for just $40.79 plus five bucks shipping. That's after a $20 mail-in rebate, but I reckon Dell's good for it.
Hauppauge tuners are widely regarded as some of the best in the business. The HVR-950 comes with DVR software but also works with Windows Media Center. (Also included: Elgato EyeTV Lite, meaning you can use the tuner with a Mac!) You'll have to supply the antenna … Read more