Adventures in Cord Cutting – Part 3 – Santa Tenants
Something happened this year that hasn’t happened in a long, long time. And it coincided with a decision not to do something that we usually do and always want to:
First, we didn’t have any major renovation bills or medical things this year. No In Vitro. No guest house demo. No new Kitchen. For a while it felt like if we weren’t renovating something, we were buying a car or making babies in jars or having babies or something.
In addition, because of general exhaustion (mainly due to Zachary being, you know, almost 3) we decided to forego the annual LuluPalooza Holiday Spectacular. I don’t think either of us had it in us this time.
What this meant was we had a little leftover in the family funds world. Our rental units are really just supposed to provide for the mortgage and repairs, etc. Without the latter, there was something extra in the kitty this year. And we decided to devote it to our own little oasis upstairs.
First off, we ordered that sectional. (It still hasn’t arrived, btw). It would take time to deliver and that would give me the time I needed to figure out the gadgets that would make this endeavor work.
First off, the TV.
Let me say, 3D or no 3D, tvs are cheaper than they were when we bought our flat screen. I think we paid about $1400 for a Panasonic 1080i plasma. That’s an ‘i”, not a “p”. That was almost 7 years ago.
For about $800 we could get a 50″ LG LED 3D. Same size TV, but with much of the apps we use our Roku for: Netflix, Vudu, Spotify, pandora, Amazon, Hulu, you get the idea.
But, I couldn’t pull the trigger.
Life got in the way. In a great way, I mean. Holidays. Travel. Work. Volunteer stuff. Kids. Family. It just never was possible to get to the store to really make the decision. (I’m not really one for ordering anything bigger than my door online)
Then, when I was ready, guess what? No more 50″ TVs. Wait, what?
Somehow, the majors decided that 47 or 55 inches were the standard. That’s interesting because 47 inches would be too small for a media room that would seat 6-8 comfortably. Gravity would look like Carl Sagan’s Cosmos on that. Man of Steel would look like Lois & Clark.
But 55 inches? That’s 49 inches across. A full 5 inches wider than the dedicated wall space.
Would the door clear it? Would it swallow the room? Ugh.
There was really no other choice. I had decided that I wanted an LG LED. I liked the colors and the vibrancy. And I also liked the price of the LG 3D blu-ray player. And everything accesses all the app platforms we use and should play well together. And, it was really just about $100 more.
So, home I headed with the toys in tow, including the rabbit ears for the digital signal and some movies to get our media room started. And a tv table. Simple one, with glass tables.
Btw, the ONLY thing that was broken upon unpacking was the bottom shelf of tempered glass for that table. I didn’t even open the box containing it until I had put together the table. So, I had to return just that shattered glass and they replaced it immediately.
The TV was a simple set up. Plugging the antenna in was a snap. Five minutes later the scan was complete and there were all my local channels.
In fact, after years of cable and then satellite I can report that the OTA signal is the best and clearest I’ve ever seen. Maybe its the tv, but, holy cow does this look good.
I spent the bulk of the first few days watching Betas and Alpha House on Amazon and Skyfall on Netflix and…something on Hulu. Only occasionally dropping into the networks. I still didn’t have a DVR so why watch if I can’t pause, man?
I also spent a LOT of time playing with the 3D settings. Watching the crisp conversion of Man of steel or getting caught up in Wreck It Ralph (again) or taking old movies, like Manhattan or Citizen Kane, and turning them into kinescope videos with bad lighting and terrible quality.
I didn’t notice any trouble.
Until I moved on to Phase 3….
Next – Hello to an old friend and, wait, is there a snowstorm coming?