Archive for TV and Bigscreen Maintenance

Beware of Purchasing Close Outs at Circuit City

Beware of Purchasing Close Outs at Circuit City

MIAMISBURG — Dana and Patricia Finch said they didn’t expect to find any deals when they visited the Circuit City at 2700 Miamisburg-Centerville Road on Tuesday, Feb. 10.

Despite their pessimism, the Waynesville couple made the 20-minute trip to the store, which is being liquidated. Store personnel said the location is to close on or by Monday, Feb. 16.

Unfortunately, the selection of merchandise in the store did not prove them wrong.

“I think they just have floor models left. That’s all they seem to have,” Patricia Finch said after leaving.

“They don’t have anything in a box or anything,” Dana Finch said.

There’s no instructions,” Patricia Finch said. “Most of the stuff doesn’t have any remote controls to it, so you are buying at your own risk.”

What could be found there Tuesday afternoon included large flat screen TVs — one of the cheapest marked down to $1,329.89 from $1,899.99; High definition DVD players; a mini digital camera for $90.97 (but no accessories); a vacuum cleaner for $249.99; a printer for a computer at $41.99 and a dashboard-mount global positioning system for $139.99.

Joyce Beard of Trotwood said she came in search of computers, but found none.

“They are pretty much sold out of what I came for,” Patti Smith of Indiana said about her search for a laptop. “If you go in there and look it’s pretty empty.”

“I can buy almost the same TV at Wal-Mart for less,” said Mary Shotwell, 23, of Franklin. “We got a 42-inch for $700 and they got them in here for over a $1,000.”

Frank Clapsaddle of Franklin said he came in to find a good deal on a big screen television, but didn’t find what he was looking for. “The markdowns are pretty much priced at what other retailers are or a little higher, truthfully,” he said.

Donyale Harris, 41, of West Carrollton and her son Malik Mayo left empty-handed because she thought the televisions were “priced too high.”

When asked if he had found any deals, Arwa Sheewi of Centerville said, “No. not really… I just came to look around and found this stereo.” He was able to get a stereo system for $70, marked down from $130.

Finch had a word of warning for Circuit City shoppers looking for those last minute deals: “You better know what you are buying or else it’s going to be just junk to you.”

A Dayton Daily News reporter placed a phone call to the +!@#$creek store, 2720 Towne Drive, on Tuesday, and was greeted by a recording that announced, “We are currently closed.”

Consumers will also most likely get recorded prompts instead of a person, when calling Circuit City’s hotline, 1-800-the-city.

Contact this reporter at (937) 225-2414 or


Another Great Source for Bigscreen Info

Another Great Source for Bigscreen Info

What happened to my audio ??

What happened to my audio ??

I got a call from my Aunt Eva, my mother’s youngest sister, and she was like

“the Moving people hooked up the BigScreen and there is no Sound “

” Don’t Panic ”  I told her. Some bigscreens and tvs have speaker on / off switches in the back, near the cable inputs. I have had Grandparents call me and and say ” My grandchildren were over and I know it was the video games and now no audio ”     Many times it was the grands that hit the speaker on / off switch while playing hide and seek.

However, we have also had many cases whereby, the internal micro of the tv, has got a glitch.  Sometimes it only takes the unplugging of the tv for 10 minutes, and all is well. Sometimes, it is actually the cable or satellite box not providing audio-always check a second source. Sometimes there is a speaker on / off option in the audio menu of the tv set. Worst case senerio, the audio circuit did fail.

I caution all who own a tv or bigscreen with additional speaker outputs, to….never use this option. Your better choice would be to take the audio out of the cable box or the tv ( red and white RCA connectors-all tvs don’t have this ) and feed this line level output to a boombox with aux or video inputs, surround sound, or stereo system. Let the Stereo power the sound. Do not work the 2.5 to 10 watt audio amps in the tv or bigscreen with additional speakers. In a lot of tvs and bigscreens, if you blow the audio circuit, the whole TV will fail,,,,,Dead Dog! You will be looking at a repair bill of around 200-400.00 or more and the sound from a tv cannot compare to the amplification of a stereo or surround sound system.

Just thinking about my Aunt Eva and our upcomming family reunion and thought I would share these audio tips with you.  and by the way, I walked her thru the audio menu and her problem was solved in one 5 minute phone call.   Priceless !!

Peace and Love


OK, the secret of the HD date is out

OK, the secret of the HD date is out !

For years I have been telling my customers to, do not worry, your 5-10 year old TV or Bigscreen will still be a viable medium for veiwing tv and videos after the 2009 cutoff date. Back in 2000, while working with bigbox firms, their salesman and the general advertising media pushed the threat of loosing TV !!

TVs and Bigscreens are the center of most households. For many of my elderly customers, this is their only contact to the world, other than their trips to the doctor and hospitals. We make them priority ONE !! Having walked my parents to the end for a period of 5 years, I saw in the last 18 months, their ability to leave their home diminish. Their biggest joy was Food and TV. I cooked healthy and tasteful meals for them almost everyday, Cooking is a passion of mine.

I also see the effects of young families, when the main Bigscreen goes down and everyone has to share smaller tvs or they fragment and migrate to their own rooms and the 1960s, TV dinner, Group senerio dissolves. I have actually seen Kids Jump in Joy, Dogs Bark and Husband and Wife Kiss and Hug due to the Restoration of the family Bigscreen. Yes, I did feel like a god !!

What’s even more amazing is to repair a 2-5 year old Bigscreen and see that it is HD compatible, but was never hooked up properly by the cable or satellite technician and the pix looked crappy. In addition the Bigscreen had a fully functional Stereo or Surround Sound system sitting rite next to it, but not attached or utilized.

I just want to say ” Do Not Believe the Hype ! ” With convertor boxes ( cable, satellite and stand alone ) all tvs and bigscreens will still work when the 2009 cutoff date for HD occurs ( the jury is still out as to whether that is a viable date ). I have customers with HD units who think they will not work after 2009 because they were purchased 4-5 years ago. YES THEY WILL !!

Check with local suppliers and support firms to find out what you need to maximize your Audio , Video and Computer and Gaming technologies. Search the web for info on questions you have about what you are using and where you want to go with what you have or how you should proceed with upgrades and new purchases. Do Not Trust the Salesman, Even if they are Not on Commission, Most will still tell you ,what ever you want to hear to close the sale. Most in-home Audio/Video experts will demand a fee of around 35-75.00 to visit and consult and it is well deserved. The time put into keeping up with technology trends is enormous. For me, it is a passion as I write this at 1 am on a Sunday night.

Check your Better Biz BrL and other community watchdogs to make sure you are working with and hiring a reputable firm. Be diligent in your quest for great home entertainment and support of the systems that make up your home entertainment pleasure systems.

I can’t tell you how many people, who call me , after they have been ripped off or purchased the worst product at the highest price.

Now that you know, You cannot, Not…Know…………Peace

Buy DLP and LCD Lamps with Proper Warranty.

Buy DLP and LCD Lamps with Proper Warranty.

I have been recieving more and more calls from customers who have brought 3rd party replacement lamps with no warranty.

Rarely and in my experience, will the DLP or LCD projector cause the lamp to go bad upon initial install. One must check owners manaul on how to clean filters on your unit. Dirty filters will cause the unit to overheat and will send the unit into thermal/temperature shutdown. Repeated attemps to power the unit up, then, may possibly ruin the lamp again.

Check for suppliers with one year warranties on lamps and stay away from cheap knockoffs. You’ll only pay more in the end.

Craig the TV Man

I lost my cable, but my DVD still works, Huh ?

I lost my cable, but my DVD still works, Huh ?

Just got a call from a customer ( 10pm EST ) and she could not understand why she could watch DVDs but not TV.

The way her installation was set up ( Normal for Cable and Satellite Techs ) , was to run the TV signals thru the screw on, RF connector. However most DVDs are connected through the A/V connections, which are usually RCA connectors, colored yellow for video and red and white for audio left and right or what is known as component connections which are usually Red, Green and Blue for video and 2 cables red and white for audio.

So ….by determining that the A/V inputs worked and the screw on RF , black cable did not.

Now, I ask….”Are you using a cable or sat box or vcr ?”

Cable Box was her answer. She was then instructed to turn box around and look for audio and video OUT connectors. She found them immediately, for it’s not much else back there.

I then instructed her to take the cables from the DVD player and attach, The Red, Yellow and White cables to the cable box outputs……..She screamed like a little girl ” I got picture, I got sound !! ”

Moral of the story. If your DVD and Video games work thru the Red, White and Yellow Audio /Video inputs. Then so will your Cable Box, Satellite reciever and VCR. You are simply bypassing the srcew on, black , RF connector which is attatched to the BigScreens tuner and feeding signal directly to the video and audio amplifiers. This set-up actually give better quality in most set-ups and systems and should be used from the beginning.( Cheaper to hook up 1 RF connector and go ).

Lastly, remember that you have to switch the TV or Bigscreen from the channel 3 or 4 input to the A/V inputs. Most tvs have a button marked TV/Video or Aux In near the volume and channel and menu buttons on the front or top panel. However, some tvs require that you have the original remote control to switch inputs, while some older RCA and GE models use channel 00, 91 and others to switch to those inputs.

I will follow up this article with diagrams for the hard of reading.

Top 3 reasons for having your HDTV professionally cleaned yearly.

Top 3 reasons for having your HDTV professionally cleaned yearly.

We’re not talking about cleaning the screen here (although that’s important too).

  1. Having the chassis vacuumed prevents dirt, dust, or pet dander from causing problems with the electronics such as heat buildup.
  2. Mirror and lenses will attract dirt,dust,cigarette smoke,ect and thus your picture will become darker.
  3. Most Plasmas and DLP units have fans and filters that can clog and cause heat failure ( Very Expensive Repair ).