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About Fermenter

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  1. Hi all, just wondering if anyone here can steer me in the right direction? I'd like to schedule a daily wake up routine (eg power on, switch input, adjust volume) for my Yamaha AVR. I guess the ideal scenario is an application running on my Windows 7 PC that I can schedule to send the control commands over the network, but I have no idea where to start looking. FWIW I currently have an iPad running iRule which can can already control the amp via network or IR, so the hardware and comms are in place but unfortunately no timer feature. I also have a QNAP NAS server that could run something if necessary, but that would be more of a learning curve for me and I'd rather just run something on the PC if possible. Any suggestions? What am I even looking for?!
  2. Hi everyone, I think it's time to replace my DP-Lite, and I'm hoping for feedback on how the T4 stacks up with the following issues: Naming of recordings: I record everything to the HDD, but then generally trim and transfer movies etc to my NAS for storage. I only ever watch them back via the DVR, but the DP-Lite's menu takes up half the screen with the date, time and length of all recordings, and then truncates the actual movie names, which is annoying. It also looks crap if I have a mix of other movie files in the same menu that weren't recorded on the BW, as they have no date/time/length info preceding their filename. Can I choose to NOT show the date/time/length info on recording names with the T4, and just see the actual movie names? If so, do I also then have to lose that info on local HDD files, or can I get the best of both worlds (ie, local recordings display date/time/length, while archived movies on NAS display movie title only)? Music playing: I have all my music on the NAS as FLAC. I understand the T4 handles FLAC, but does it have a good interface for serving up music (ie, is it easy to play full albums, shuffle tracks in an artist or genre etc?) Pink screen: My DP-Lite seems to like dropping a colour channel and going pink sometime between switching the TV off and back on again. Sometimes switching inputs on the my AVR will fix it, other times I have to power cycle the BW. Google returns that this is not unique to my machine, and BW's response seemed to be an instruction that the TV should always be turned on before the DVR (which is absurd, as it suggests you can't leave the DVR on between viewing sessions). Has anyone seen this happen in a T4? Finally, any recommendations for alternative machines? I'm happy with the general operation of the BW but am I missing something seriously cool?! Many thanks in advance for any feedback!
  3. Thanks Chrisso, that's concerning. I still haven't pulled the trigger. I'm not sure what I can do about PQ, except learn to live with it. Projection is out in this application. Plasma is dead, and I'm sure I want to go over 65" anyway - I have a 1.8m wide old heavy steel workbench that I've converted to a 'vintage industrial' media unit, and it sits in front of a high empty wall. It's always been the plan to get a large TV that basically fills the bench - so, 75"-80" - I'm comfortable that it won't be oversized, and if I go much smaller I know it will eat at me. That only leaves opting for a better LCD, which means spending a lot more dollars. The same screen in series 7 is $5500, and I don't even know if that would mean a significant improvement in PQ. Similarly I'm not convinced that switching to Sony or Sharp or anyone else will reap any PQ benefits either, but I'd love to hear any comments. I haven't looked into scalers at all but I'd be surprised if choosing a cheaper screen and a posh scaler would give any better results, especially if the screen's lighting system is part of the problem. Open to all suggestions!
  4. Thanks for all the input - I double-checked my viewing distance, it will actually be about 3.6m from eyeball to screen, so about a foot further than I initially thought. I popped into my local HN today, the biggest H6400 they had on display was 60", so I sussed it out from about 2.9m to get a feel for PQ. Fortunately it was a quiet day and they gave me the remote, so I spent a while moving the chair back and forth and tweaking the picture. Unfortunately (or perhaps fortunately) the only usable content I could find was the news on Ch9 (with its absurdly oversaturated cartoon colours) and Insight on SBS (looking grey and drab and anaemic). I could also flick between SBS and SBS HD to compare both resolutions, so it was probably a useful exercise. My biggest concern is whether normal SD FTA programming will be utterly unwatchable on a 75" screen from that distance, but I don't think it will be. With a bit of work I was able to get what I would consider a watchable image, and that's in a store with fluoro lights everywhere. Given more time at home I reckon I could do even better. Interestingly the W850 right next to it looked quite a bit better to start with, but I had it beat fairly quickly. It also had a lot of motion jitter that made the Samsung look as smooth as silk - to be fair, I didn't spend very long on the Sony, and I imagine it could be corrected, but I saw enough to satisfy myself that the Samsung wasn't inferior. Coming from a smaller plasma the PQ of the larger LCD will take some getting used to, but I suspect I'd regret getting a smaller screen more than a lower series.
  5. Thanks Adam. Is 75" really that monstrous? Aren't screen sizes just marching relentlessly upwards? Won't anything under 100" be considered average in 5 years?! I con't want to overdo it, but I don't want to underdo it either. The room is long, and behind the couch is the kitchen and bar area so it will be watched from further away as well, but obviously the couch position is king. What size would you recommend? Dropping down to 65" I can rule out Series 9, at $4700 it is just too much. The 8 is $4000 and the 7 is still $3500. If 65" is actually big enough it will be very hard to resist the Series 6 at $2300. PQ is important but that's a hell of a premium to pay. The 70" Sony W850 is $2900, but this means putting up with Sony's habit of ramming it's ideas and services down my throat at every opportunity. I think I'd prefer a Samsung this time round, but I could be persuaded into something else if there's a compelling case for it.
  6. So my 46" plasma died and while it might be repairable, it's not right for the new lounge layout so it's time to upgrade. I have room for 75" and can just about manage the $4k price tag. The couch has me at 3.3m from the screen, and most of my viewing is general evening TV - some movies, no gaming. My concerns are PQ, reflections and ambient light handling, and comfort for casual TV viewing (is 75" too big for me?) Obviously I could trade inches for series, or consider another brand if something else is a better fit for my needs. What do you reckon?
  7. Thanks again, I grabbed one of the reconned DP Lites. If I get a couple of years out of it I'll be happy, and by then it sounds like things may have improved. As for playing media off the NAS, it seems that I've got a dozen options for that! I haven't had much chance to play with it yet, still setting it all up, but if the PVR, and the PC, and the TV, and the Oppo, and the Yamaha (and the iPhone via the Yamaha) are all bad at it, then I'll get the WD ;0)
  8. Thanks again Peter. So it looks like the best option might be to find a Freeview-approved box, that has really good FF/skip implementation? Also, I just bought a NAS, but I would only want TV shows stored there if they were expiry-free and readable by other devices. Is that even possible? Otherwise I am sure you are right and that the best option is to get a basic unit and start using it. Do you happen to have a link to that Beyonwiz special?
  9. Thanks guys. The PVR feature in the Panasonic is truly dreadful - it even labels recordings with the title, thumbnail and description from the previous show, if that is still running when recording started (which it always is). Is automatic padding still needed? Don't they use program ID triggers these days to make sure you record the full show? Obviously I'm keen to have proper labelling and no missing endings, are all PVR's pretty much equal in this regard?
  10. Hi guys, hoping you can help out a PVR newbie. I was just about to drop $179 on a WD AV drive to connect to my ~2yr old Panasonic plasma. Then I remembered that the recording sucks, it works purely on advertised time, can't record and watch something else etc etc etc and that I'm probably far better off putting the money into a PVR. Started Googling PVRs and it's done my head in. Panasonic. Topfield. Humax. Tivo. Freeview. What's worse, all the explanatory articles and reviews seem to be at least a couple of years old. Obviously, I want to record FTA TV shows (I don't have Foxtel). Full series and recommendations would be cool. I want to skip the ads, and avoid repeats. I don't need bluray or 3d conversion etc. A smarthub type setup with good/expandable channels would be a bonus but not essential. Other than that, I don't even know what features are out there. Can some kind soul please point me in the right direction?!
  11. That's disappointing. I know I'm a luddite, but when I hooked up the plasma to my ADSL last week I thought that getting extra TV content directly from the TV remote was the greatest thing since sliced bread, and I couldn't wait to see how far the technology had got since then. I only have an aging laptop at home that works just fine for general purpose stuff, but if I want HDMI and media capabilities then I'm going to need a new machine, and that's an expense and hassle I really can't be bothered with right now. I don't have anything against free subscription services, but as far as I can see Netflix costs $100+ a year and Quickflix wants $180. Again, it's a service I'll rarely use and I'm keen to minimise the number of hands dipping into my bank account every month.
  12. Perhaps jsmith meant "in addition" then, if so I apologise for my response. But I'm sure that I've seen references to other TV channels offering streaming on smart TV's - maybe 7 and 10? And if Bigpond Movies has no subscriptionless competition then I'm surprised. Interesting, so all I'd need is a NAS with the media, and the smartphone/tablet, and I'm up and running? That sounds pretty cool.
  13. I have already done more than 'a little' searching and I haven't found answers, which is why I thought I'd ask on this forum. I appreciate your input, but claiming that in 2014 Australia's only options for streaming content are Youtube and Torrents is wide of the mark by quite a margin. Even I know that, and I'm the guy asking questions. I'm not trying to bust your balls, but it isn't unreasonable that I call you out if your advice is wrong is it? Surely there are folks on this forum that are much more familiar with the available local content streams than I am, that can shed light on what's worth looking into?
  14. Rubbish! As stated in my OP, my 3yo Panny plasma has free content from ABC and SBS, as well as Bigpond Movies which has no subscription but a small pay-per vie fee (which I have no problem with). That's just what I stumbled upon when I hooked it up to ADSL for the first time. I'd be stunned if the latest TV's and the nation's content providers haven't evolved significantly beyond that in the last 3 years?! I do plan to get an iPad at some point, I suppose I could always use that as the 'smarts' and stream from that to the big screen, but to be honest I really like the simplicity of flicking channels on the TV remote and browsing for something else without lifting my not inconsiderable arse from the couch. I spend my working life in front of a PC, I'm a bit over using device A with device B to to get content to device C etc.
  15. Thanks again jsmith. Exactly which part of "non-subscription" did I not make clear? Just being a smartass. Seriously though, things like netflix are totally irrelevant to me. I have no interest in paying each month for a service I'll hardly use. I work away all week, my rural internet connection is too slow for it to be a regular option and my ISP (iiNet) offers its own subscription IPTV service if that ever changes. I just like being able to find something decent to watch when the FTA TV is crap or the signal drops out. Samsung are already at the top of my list, and I'm somewhat familiar with their models. What I'm really keen to learn though is whether other manufacturers (eg Sony?) have competing services that I should be aware of before I make any decisions. Or can I get a Samsung app for all Australian content providers, including those aligned with other manufacturers?