Top Car Audio & Video Articles
How to Add an Auxiliary CD Changer
A CD changer for your car stereo gives you the chance to load up multiple discs and cycle through them without having to physically handle CDs while you're driving. CD changers are often mounted in the trunk of a car and accept a cartridge with the CDs in place; the audio is piped up to the head unit for control from the driver's -- or passenger's -- seat.
Hooking Up a ThinkPad to a TV
With the rise of high-definition TVs, high-speed wireless Internet and streaming video, it only makes sense to start connecting your laptop to your TV. Business owners can run presentations straight from their ThinkPad to a large-screen TV without needing expensive projectors or screens. Even if you don't have an HD TV you can still connect a Lenovo ThinkPad notebook computer to your TV and set it up as an external monitor. Cables and adapters are available to hook up a ThinkPad to any TV.
How to Connect an iPad to HDTV
Depending on the setup of your home theater system, you may already have everything you need to connect your iPad to your HDTV. Perhaps the most obvious way to connect the two is by using an adapter cable. This is a quick way to mirror your iPad's display on the TV screen. An Apple TV is also an inexpensive option to connect the two using a Wi-Fi network, with the added benefit of making an otherwise-dumb TV smart. If your TV is already connected to your home network, your TV manufacturer and third-party developers have apps that integrate the iPad into your TV-watching experience.
Audio Tape to MP3 Conversion
Audio tape was once a widely-used method of storing music, but has been replaced with more efficient, and longer-lasting, technologies. If you have an audio tape containing treasured and irreplaceable sounds, don't despair. You can to convert them to the newer MP3 format for posterity. Audio tape is a very noisy medium in comparison to current media, so look for a pre-converted file where possible. If you must do a manual conversion, you’ll need a tape player and sound capturing and recording software.
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One of the most exciting things to happen to consumer electronics in this generation is the ability to connect your computer to your home television for video streaming or everyday computing. The MacBook Pro offers a very crisp, yet small screen that begs to be transferred to that beautiful television in your living room. There are several ways to connect your Mac to your TV with accessories that are readily available at a local consumer electronics store.
ITunes enables you to import and watch videos directly on your PC, but it doesn’t include a feature for downloading content from a DVD. To transfer a DVD to your computer, download and install a DVD-ripping application. Many programs can rip and encode a DVD to a video file format that is compatible with iTunes, such as MP4, MPG or MOV. After you transfer each movie to your computer, you can import them to iTunes and use the program’s “Get Info” feature to categorize your movie collection.
You toil for hours in your vehicle only to find that your radio's not turning on or you hear no sound. Although this may be initially frustrating, more than likely an ordinary cause is the reason for the failure. By systematically checking fuses, wiring, gain settings and other connections, you should be able to troubleshoot the problem and begin enjoying your car stereo once again.
Pioneer is an established brand among car audio enthusiasts. Offering everything from head units to speakers, you can transform the mundane factory sound system into a full-featured, high-end stereo. Replacing the radio and stock speakers takes some time, but is not overly difficult when using the right tools and installation accessories.
As you build your car audio system, you may notice that bass is lacking. The fast way to solve this common problem is to add a subwoofer. These drivers are dedicated to supplying the low-frequency information in your media, robbed by small speakers, road noise and engine hum. Adding a subwoofer is fairly straightforward when you understand the relationship between the amplifier's wattage output and the subwoofer's rated impedance.
Whether used in home or mobile audio applications, dual voice subwoofers provide additional wiring flexibility when compared to single voice coil options. This flexibility comes with the added responsibility of ensuring the electrical impedance is correct, allowing maximum power output while maintaining amplifier stability. Combining the right amplifier with the right pair of DVC subwoofers will make the difference between pavement pounding sound or an unreliable sonic disappointment.
In the past, video production required a professional studio and tens of thousands of dollars invested in equipment. Today, anyone with a digital camcorder and a computer has access to video-production tools that rival or surpass older professional equipment. The problem is learning how to use all those features. For users who only occasionally want to add improved audio to their home movies or homemade live music recordings, a few simple techniques can substantially improve your sound quality.
Subwoofers add the low octaves in a car stereo system that conventional dash, door and deck speakers cannot play effectively or at all. Subwoofers require amplification, with the relationship between subwoofer impedance and amplifier key in how well bass is reproduced. Wiring a subwoofer to a car stereo is fairly straightforward, but must take into account a few factors to achieve the performance you expect.
Samsung HDTVs offer multiple connectors for attaching peripheral devices, such as DVD players. For optimal quality, you should use an HDMI connection, but the Samsung HDTV additionally supports 1080p video quality through three-video-channel component AV cables. Older DVD players might only support composite AV cables, which combine the three video channels into a single line, but using these cables results in low-quality video resolution.
In the tangle of wires connecting your audiovisual system, the most familiar are the traditional RCA cables -- with their red- and white-labeled audio plugs and yellow-labeled video plugs. They're physically identical to the red-yellow-green connectors used for component video, and the non-optical variety of digital audio cable, so it's only natural to wonder whether you could use a spare audio cable for video. Although this can be a useful stopgap, as it may save you a trip to the store, there are some compromises involved.
Within the Apple iPhone is all the technology you need to set up your own security camera in your home or office. All you need is a place to mount it, a power supply and an app to run it. If you want to use a security camera while you're away, leaving an iPhone unattended may not be practical. If this is the case, you can connect your iPhone to wireless IP camera and monitor the situation right from your iPhone.
Connecting a DVD recorder to your set-top box is not difficult, though you might need to pick up some extra cables to complete the task. Most models can connect through a wide range of analog and digital audio/video connections, at varying levels of quality. Your TV's best-quality inputs are typically used for Blu-ray players and your digital TV signal, so standard A/V connections are almost always available for your DVD recorder to use.
Liquid crystal computer monitors are digital devices, displaying crisp images transmitted from the computer over display cables. Even in the modern computing world, VGA -- an analog display standard -- connections are ubiquitous. HDMI is a digital standard for audio and video transmission, while DVI -- similar in its digital form to HDMI but without audio capabilities -- bridges the digital and analog realms. Understanding the difference between analog and digital signals will help you select which type of cable is right for you.
Speaker wires in a mobile environment must be installed and routed with care. The constant motion of the vehicle, foot traffic and shifting items in a trunk or storage area also present potential for damaged car stereo wiring. Speaker wires may be repaired using simple techniques, creating an electrical connection as secure as if the break never happened.
High-Definition Multimedia Interface outputs both a video and an audio signal, but some devices -- like certain models of PC monitor -- lack speakers. Some HDTVs as well, despite supporting high-quality video, at the same time suffer from poor sound. You can use composite or optical cables in tandem with HDMI, however, to hook up your multimedia device to an external sound system and improve audio quality.
If you are connecting TVs or speakers in different rooms, running audio/video cables through the walls is often the best solution. Before hauling out the drill, however, take a few minutes to plan your approach. Select a place where the holes will be least noticeable and make sure the holes are lined up with each other so you can easily get the cable from one hole to the other. Even if you have never picked up a drill before, cutting through drywall is very easy. The whole project can be completed in 10 or 15 minutes.
Digital Light Processing televisions use rear projection mirrors, technology that's generally much less expensive to produce than that found in LCD, LED or plasma televisions. Consequently, Samsung and other TV manufacturers can often sell a 60- or 70-inch DLP TV for about the same cost as a LCD, LED or plasma model with a small screen. Like other modern TVs, you can connect a Samsung DLP TV to computer and use it as an external display. Therefore, if you would like to view games, videos or other applications on a Dell laptop in a larger format, you can connect the notebook to the Samsung TV and use the TV as an external monitor.
Home surveillance differs somewhat from a simple burglar alarm system. Alarm systems are generally a combination of magnetic window and door detectors wired to a central alarm and auto-dialer that notifies your cell phone or your alarm company when a magnetic switch is tripped. Such systems can also include a motion detector to report any unauthorized movement within your home when you are not present. Surveillance systems add multiple video cameras often coupled with microphones and infrared night vision capabilities. In addition to a video monitoring system, two-way audio communications between each camera and the base station and remote video surveillance capacities are generally included.
Ever since IBM released the first personal computers in the early 1980s, games have been a part of the PC culture. Later, when manufacturers began shipping CD-ROM drives in computers, many users discovered quickly they could use their computers to watch videos or movies. Modern Internet streaming technologies now even let users watch movies without any discs at all. While playing games or watching movies on a computer often proves convenient, the relative small size of a PC monitor may make the experience less enjoyable than it could be if you were using a larger screen. With Microsoft Windows and a few cables, you can connect your desktop or laptop computer to a television and begin enjoying games and movies in a bigger and more life-like format.
Despite the prevalence of High Definition Multimedia Interface, or HDMI, cables, there is still a need for quality component video and analog audio interconnects. Although found with decreasing frequency on modern components, component video is capable of delivering high-definition video. Analog audio jacks are found on nearly every home theater device. Although analog audio and component video cables appear similar on the outside, they serve two very different functions.
Mac laptops let you work and play virtually anywhere. In fact, anything you can do with a desktop, you can do with a Mac notebook -- including watching movies or playing 3D games. While Mac laptops offer adequate power and speed for just about any application you want to run, there is one potential drawback when watching videos or gaming -- the small screen size. Therefore, if you want to enjoy movies, games or any other application from a Mac laptop on a much larger scale, connect the notebook to a TV and immediately increase the size of your screen real estate.
When Microsoft first released MSN Messenger in late 1998, the application supported the transfer of picture images but not video chat. In the early days of Instant Messaging clients, webcams were hardly a concern because few people owned them. These days, however, millions of people own and use webcams to stay in contact with friends and loved ones via video-chat. Consequently, modern versions of MSN Messenger -- since renamed Windows Live Messenger -- enable users to use their webcams to see the people with whom they chat. Connecting a webcam to your computer is relatively simple, and using the camera with Messenger is something you can master in just a few minutes.
Most modern LCD or LED televisions ship with at least a couple of kinds of ports for connecting various types of player devices. Many TVs even include a VGA port you can use to connect a desktop or laptop computer and view its display on the larger screen. Many older TVs, though, include only a coaxial cable connector and RCA inputs. If you have an older TV without a native VGA port, you can still view your computer on the larger TV screen using a relatively inexpensive adapter cable.
You loved the movie, bought the DVD and now want a CD of the soundtrack for your car audio system or boom box. The first thing you need to do is extract, or “rip,” the sound track from the DVD. Then copy the recording, or “burn” it, to a CD that will play on both your car audio system and portable CD player. Well over a dozen software vendors make the ripping software you require; here are three free versions: Switch Audio File Converter, DVD Audio Ripper and Free DVD MP3 Ripper.
Internet radio streams music onto your computer or portable listening device so you can listen to it anywhere. You can access to news, sports, music or even comedy any time of the day or night, every day of the week. Mobile Internet radio options allow you to use the data signals from cell towers to stream music on-the-go, while a wireless network or wired LAN lets you access it at home. You have Internet radio options available on your desktop computer, tablets, tabletop devices or your smartphone.
RCA cables are a very common way of transmitting video signals. The name for this type of connection comes from the Radio Corporation of America, which designed the cables in the 1940s. This type of cable allows the color video information from one device to be linked to a monitor or television. An RCA cable is not designed for high definition video, however. A variety of alternative cables are usually preferred for HD devices, due to their ability to carry a superior video signal.
Many modern desktop and laptop computers include an optical drive, which you can use to view DVD movie discs. In fact, the picture quality provided by computer DVD drives often rivals that of expensive set-top players used in home entertainment systems. With software readily available on the Internet, you can even rip or extract DVD movies from a disc and store them on your hard drive, although doing this can consume a lot of space. DVD discs store movie data in VOB folders on the media. If you only need the audio portion of a DVD movie – from a concert disc, for example – you can use one of many applications or websites to create MP3 or other common audio files from the video.