4 Devices I Recommend For Cord Cutters (Get Rid of that cable package)

4 Devices I Recommend For Cord Cutters (Get Rid of that cable package)

If you are tired of paying for the cable packages you don’t need, there really is no reason to subscribe to pay TV anymore. There are so many great services out there that stream tens of thousands of hours of content for next to nothing, and you can get all of the major networks for free in high-quality 1080p Full HD. So seriously… why are you still paying for cable? And if you shop from here, you will help sponsor the Yak About series.

In this post, we’ll show you four devices that will let you cut the cord with ease.

Set-Top Box

First, you’ll need a streaming box so you can watch Netflix, Hulu, HBO Now and every other service. We recommend the Roku Premiere+.

Roku Premiere+ Streaming Media Player

  • Perfect for HD and 4K Ultra HD TVs, features fast quad-core processor and 802.11ac dual-band wireless.
  • 4K Ultra HD at 60fps with four times the resolution of 1080p HD, delivering crisp detail and brilliant, life-like images.
  • Vibrant HDR displaying an incredible range of colors, brighter whites, and deeper blacks.
  • Enhanced point anywhere remote with headphones for private listening.
  • Unbiased search across top channels. Find where it’s free or cheapest to watch.

Antenna

Next up, you’re going to need an HDTV antenna that gets you live broadcast TV in FHD from every major network for free.

Vansky Indoor Amplified HDTV Antenna

FREE CHANNELS — Cut the cable and get access to your local news, weather, sitcoms, kids and sports programs, educational programs etc., Absolutely FREE. Enjoy crystal clear HDTV shows, 720p, 1080i, 1080p | ATSC available.The Indoor TV antenna can help.
50-MILE RANGE — The Upgraded Version antenna amplifier boosts the TV antenna with better signal and butterfly pattern optimizes reception. Working frequency: VHF 174-240MHz, UHF 470-862MHz. Channel reception may vary depending on what’s broadcasting in your area, distance from broadcast towers, terrain and the surroundings. Before you buy, Check what available channels are in your area by using these websites:”antennaweb.org” or “antennapoint.com”.
16.5FT LONG COAXIAL CABLE — Makes indoor TV antenna easier for you to place it in your house to get the best reception, especially for customers whose televisions are quite far away from windows.
SLIM & HIGH PERFORMANCE — Paper-thin design makes free HDTV antenna easy to lay flat on table, hide it behind the TV, or place it high on window (highly recommended). It’ll pull in hundreds of crystal clear digital & HD shows!
WHAT YOU GET — Vansky Indoor HDTV Antenna with 16.5ft coax cable, USB power adapter with spare cable,Amplifier Signal Booster,Spare 3M Sticker. Together with 45 Days Money Back, One Year Guarantee and Friendly, Easy-to-reach Support. If you don’t satisfied with the channels you get, feel free to contact us.If the external amplifier can’t work as expect,You can also purchase our HDTV antenna Amplifier Signal Booster here: B01N2QRBCC

Modem

You’ll also definitely want to get your own cable modem since the cost of your internet will go up once you ditch cable and lose your bundle discount. We recommend the Netgear model below, and you’ll find faster versions of it on that page if you want.

NETGEAR DOCSIS 3.0 Cable Modem

ELIMINATE MONTHLY CABLE MODEM RENTAL FEES – Up to $120 per year.
Up to 340Mbps download and upload speed. Separate router required for WiFi. 8×4 channel bonding.
DOCSIS 3.0 unleashes 8x faster download speeds than DOCSIS 2.0. Ideal for streaming HD videos, faster downloads, and high-speed online gaming.
Compatibe with Xfinity from Comcast, Spectrum, Cox, & more. Not compatible with bundled voice services.
If the unit does not work , Check the connection of your devices. Ensure that each connection is securely and tightly plugged in. Try to refresh your cable connection by power cycling your network, If power cycling did not work, download the latest firmware of your router.
After you have the downloaded the firmware, please upgrade your routers firmware manually, If the above steps did not resolve your issue, you may need to reset your router.
Required for the fastest cable Internet speed tiers
DOCSIS 3.0 Cable Modem with 1 Gigabit Ethernet port.

Router

And finally, you’re going to want to upgrade your Wi-Fi router so you can stream movies and TV shows anywhere in your home without any problem. Below, you’ll find three different options that cover every size home and every price range.

NETGEAR Nighthawk AC1750 Smart Dual Band WiFi Router

AC1750 Wi-Fi-450+1300 Mbps speeds and high-power external antennas. Ideal for homes with 12 or more Wi-Fi devices
Beamforming+ improves range, boosts speed and performance for both 2.4 and 5GHz devices
NETGEAR genie App – Enjoy more of your connected home. Now with remote access
One USB 3.0 Port
Beamforming+ focuses Wi-Fi signals from the wireless router to Wi-Fi devices

 

Yak About Broadway and The Best TV’s to buy 2017

Yak About Broadway and The Best TV’s to buy 2017

So I had planned an all tech show. Then Sally tells me she is going to take the family to New York to see several Broadway shows. She was looking forward to Sunset Blvd the most with Glenn Close which I saw many years ago. We then realized that we has seen many productions with some of the great leading ladies; Glenn Close, Betty Buckly, Diahanne Carroll, Elaine Paige. Brought back memories of our Broadway days.

 

Glenn Close

 

 

Elaine Paige

Betty Buckley

Diahanne Carroll

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Can’t afford an OLED TV? These four great alternatives are now cheaper than ever

by David Katzmaier, cnet.com

January 23, 2017

We love OLED TVs, and we’re betting you do too.

They’re also getting less expensive, but it’s a slow process. Right now the 65-inch LG OLED65B6P costs $3000 and the 55-inch OLED55B5P costs $2000. If you can afford one, go for it. But those prices can be twice as much (or more) than the four very good-performing LCD TVs I’ve gathered here.

Most of the TV’s I’ve tested in 2016 at all-time lows, making now’s a great time to snap one up if that OLED is too expensive, or if you want a larger or smaller size.

Before you get too excited, remember that with TV image quality, you often still get what you pay for. While very good, none of these three TVs can come close to the image quality of OLED. All suffer from LCDs’ worse black levels and off-angle performance, and the brighter images of the Sony and Samsung aren’t a major advantage: OLED still looks great in bright rooms too.

That said, buying one of these TVs over an OLED will currently save you between $1200 and $1700 at the 65-inch size. That’s nothing to sneeze at.

Here are our four current favorite OLED TV alternatives, presented in descending order of price. I listed the lowest price I found at Amazon, Best Buy, WalMart and/or Vizio.com as of press time; pricing and availability may vary afterward.

4 cheaper OLED TV alternatives

Sarah Tew/CNET

Model: Sony XBR-X930D series

65-inch price: $1800

55-inch price: $1300

Why I like it: Aside from the Vizio P series, the X930D delivered the best overall picture quality of any LCD TV we tested this year. Both scored a “9” in our picture quality tests, however (only OLED TVs got a 10 in 2016), so they’re very close. The Sony’s other attributes–better HDR quality, beautiful style, a superior Smart TV system, the Sony brand–could make it worth the extra over the Vizio too.

Model: Vizio P series

75-inch price: $3800

65-inch price: $1600

55-inch price: Don’t buy it (see below)

50-inch price: $1000

Why I like it: The best non-OLED picture quality I tested in 2016 belongs to the P series, which had superb black levels and great contrast. No, it won’t beat even higher-end LCDs with full-array local dimming, but they’re even more expensive. The P gives a ridiculously good picture for this kind of money–just don’t get the 55-inch size. It uses an IPS-based LCD panel, which delivers worse picture quality than the others.

Model: Samsung KS8000 series

65-inch price: $1500

55-inch price: $1000

49-inch price: $900

Why I like it: Although it scored the worst picture quality score on this list (“7”) in our tests, this Samsung has a lot going for it. Black levels are still decent and its high light output and excellent anti-reflective screen make it a great performer in bright rooms. Sweet looks and an innovative Smart TV system (complete with device control) sweeten the deal.

Model: Vizio M series

70-inch price: $1900

65-inch price: $1300

55-inch price: $700

50-inch price: $649

Why I like it: Simply put, the M series represents the best bang for the TV buck of any model we tested in 2017. It earned an “8” in our picture quality tests thanks again to local dimming, and while it’s not as good as the P or the Sony, it’s still excellent. And no, the inclusion of a free Android tablet did not in any way figure into our awarding the M series CNET’s Editors’ Choice.

For more alternatives, check out CNET’s list of Best TVs.

Yak About doesn’t want to do year end reruns – So Yak and Wayne shoot the shit for an hour

Yak About doesn’t want to do year end reruns – So Yak and Wayne shoot the shit for an hour

Yak About, the GPS guide to Baby Boomers. Pretty much everyone wants to take the last two weeks of the year off. I Heart and the studio peeps think its a great time to do the best of the year reruns.  Had a couple of good ones picked out. Then I found some time and I stopped by the studio. Wayne and I were talking tech, cars, life etc. 

Wayne say’s, lets turn on the mic’s and see where it goes.  We ended up chatting and before I knew it we had recorded two weeks worth of material.

It probably was one of the last times we can just shoot the shit. With the IOS and Android Yak About apps coming out in the next week and I Heart and 20 other podcasting systems agreeing to carry the show, we are going to have to get serious.

2017 should be an interesting year. It will be the first time that we record the terrestrial broadcast and additional online podcast material. I’ve been waiting to say a few of the four letter words which are pretty much banned from the AM and FM bands, but not on the podcasts.

And with the apps you’ll be able to get the censored and the uncensored material. I’m hoping that we bring a lot more fun and value to our mission of being the best 4664 boomer market broadcast out there.

in the meantime: HAPPY CHRISTMAS, MERRY CHANUKAH, HAPPY KWANZA AND

HAPPY NEW YEAR

David Yakir Interviews Minter Dial on his documentary, “The Last Ring Home”

David Yakir Interviews Minter Dial on his documentary, “The Last Ring Home”

The Project to Bring the Ring Home
Minter Dial speaks with David YakirThe Last Ring Home is the story of Lt Minter Dial’s Annapolis Naval Academy ring, that miraculously made its way home 17 years after he was killed as a POW of the Japanese in WWII. The Last Ring Home is a tribute to Lt Dial, the producer’s grandfather, and all members of the Greatest Generation. It is also a journey of self-discovery, having an impact on the filmmaker, his wider family and many other people in its wake. This story, which took over 25 years of research, illustrates the importance of serendipity and the role of good and bad luck in piecing together a personal history of someone who died 70 years ago. The Last Ring Home is to inspire everyone to uncover their own personal history, to keep a foot in their past and the other in the future, and to be thankful for the tremendous present in which we live, thanks to the sacrifices of the those who fought in WWII.

Get the Book on Amazon

Traveling forty thousand miles and inspiring love and despair in equal measure, Lt. Minter Dial’s lost Annapolis ring altered the lives of many―not just those who gazed upon its blue stone.

The spellbinding account of one man’s obsession with a family mystery―and the product of decades of research and inquiries―The Last Ring Home explores author Minter Dial’s pursuit of the true story of his namesake, his late grandfather Lt. Minter Dial, USN, a celebrated war hero whose suffering and trauma nearly buried his memory forever.

A prisoner of the Japanese in the Philippines after the fall of Bataan and Corregidor, Lt. Dial discovered the cruelest meaning of the Bushido code. Moments before he was killed, he gave his treasured Naval Academy ring to a friend. In the ensuing chaos, it disappeared.

Armed with a passion for history and a desire to uncover his grandfather’s legacy, Dial’s epic quest for the ring transports him to prisoner-of-war memorials and ex-POW conventions, military and press archives, and the homes of those affected by the Second World War across the world.

Sweeping as far back as the American Civil War, The Last Ring Home combines rigorous research with more than one hundred interviews with experts, survivors, and descendants of the Greatest Generation to tell the powerful story of American prisoners of war in the Pacific.

The New York Times Definitive Guide to Cord-Cutting in 2016, Based on Your Habits – Yak About Tech

The Definitive Guide to Cord-Cutting in 2016, Based on Your Habits

Cord Cutting

by BRIAN X. CHEN, nytimes.comOctober 12, 2016
Here’s the state of cord-cutting in America today: It’s chaotic.

Consider what’s faced by people who want to end their TV subscriptions — otherwise known as cutting the cable cord. There are now multiple different streaming services and bills to juggle. And there are numerous streaming gadgets to choose from.

So to make moving away from cable cords easier, we teamed up with The Wirecutter, the product recommendations website, to compile the definitive guide to cord-cutting. The Wirecutter tested multiple services, streaming devices and antennas to come up with cord-cutter bundles for different types of people in 2016: movie buffs, sports addicts, fans of premium TV shows, binge watchers and families with children.

More on the results in a minute. First, let’s explain how we got to this point.

Every quarter for the last few years, hundreds of thousands of American households have put an end to their TV subscriptions, fed up with the costs of cable subscriptions, channels they never watch and the annoying commercials.

The cord-cutting movement peaked in 2011, when the cable sector bled 744,000 subscribers, according to the research firm SNL Kagan. Comcast and Time Warner responded by overhauling their cable boxes with simpler interfaces, but they managed only to diminish their losses. Last quarter, the damage count for cable was 298,000 lost subscribers. Countless other would-be customers now no longer bother to sign up in the first place.

At the same time, consumers’ viewing options have widened — perhaps by too much. Streaming video services like Netflix, Amazon and Hulu are increasingly investing in original programs that compete with traditional television shows. At office water coolers, conversations are happening around Netflix, Hulu and Amazon originals like “Luke Cage,” “Casual” and “Transparent.”

Yet cord-cutters, faced with the plethora of streaming services and gadgets, remain a minority in the United States. SNL Kagan estimates that by last quarter, just 12 percent of American households subscribed to broadband internet services without a traditional TV package.

That’s where this definitive guide comes in. What we found was there is no one-size-fits-all solution because each streaming service carries a different catalog of content, and each gadget has access to different services.

The upshot: While Roku’s $50 streaming stick and Netflix are great for many purposes, you may want to use different devices or services depending on what you watch.
For Movie Buffs
For movie buffs, there are plenty of cord-cutting options that will make any transition painless. Netflix, Amazon and Hulu all have large film libraries for streaming — Amazon’s alone holds 18,400 titles, though the selection regularly changes because of agreements with content providers.

Netflix’s library has shrunk over time, as the company is no longer trying to offer the glut of back-catalog movies that every service seems to have. But Netflix has tried to compensate by focusing on movies it has exclusive licenses to, including those from Disney, Marvel, Pixar and Lucasfilm.

Amazon focuses more on quantity, but without those exclusive titles the other services offer. For recent releases, Amazon, iTunes, the Google Play store and Vudu usually get digital versions of recent movies that can be purchased for $15 to $20, or rented for about $5, even before they’re available on disc.

For most people, Netflix will offer the best selection of new movies and original programming — and Google, Amazon or Apple will offer the best selection for rentals or purchases.

BEST SERVICE: Netflix + à la carte rentals/purchases ($8 to $12/month)

BEST HARDWARE: Roku Streaming Stick ($50)

MOST AFFORDABLE: Roku Streaming Stick

ALSO WORKS WITH: Apple TV ($149), other Roku models
For Sports Addicts
For those who love watching sports, a subscription to either PlayStation Vue or Sling TV gets you ESPN and Fox Sports 1, depending on your package. And each system offers additional sports channels, depending on your interests.

You may also want to watch over-the-air broadcast channels, especially for N.F.L. games. Most televisions have an over-the-air tuner built-in, so you will be able to get your local major networks (ABC, CBS, Fox and NBC) using your existing TV hardware and an inexpensive antenna, such as the Antennas Direct ClearStream Eclipse ($40).

BEST SERVICE: PlayStation Vue ($30 to $45/month)

BEST HARDWARE: FireTV ($50 to $100) or Google Chromecast ($35)

MOST AFFORDABLE: Google Chromecast

ALSO WORKS WITH: Apple TV ($149), Roku ($50)
For Fans of ‘Game of Thrones’ and Other Premium Network Shows
No problem. HBO, Showtime and Starz can all be viewed on a phone, tablet or streaming device with a direct subscription — no cable or satellite subscription or long-term contract required. You will get access to each network’s original programming, as well as the movies each is currently showing, and you can watch from anywhere.

BEST HARDWARE: Roku Streaming Stick ($50)

MOST AFFORDABLE: Roku Streaming Stick or Google Chromecast ($35)

ALSO WORKS WITH: Apple TV ($149), other Roku models
For TV Binge Watchers
Netflix and Amazon Instant Video are your best bets to binge-watch television shows. Each offers award-winning original content, including “House of Cards,” “Orange Is the New Black,” “Master of None,” “Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt” and “Making a Murderer” on Netflix; and on Amazon, “Transparent,” “Mozart in the Jungle” and “The Man in the High Castle.”

For this original content, all episodes are released online at once. Each service also carries recent TV series, including “Better Call Saul” and “Mr. Robot,” shortly after the DVD release date.

If you don’t want to wait, you can usually purchase a “season pass” for current TV shows through iTunes, Amazon or Google Play at a cost of $20 to $30 per season usually. Google Play is generally the least expensive, offering savings of around 15 to 25 percent — and watch new episodes the day they’re aired on TV.

Hulu Plus focuses on current TV seasons, letting you watch them right after they air instead of when the season has ended. But it lacks many current popular shows.

BEST SERVICE: Netflix ($8 to $12/month) or Amazon ($99/year), or à la carte seasons

BEST HARDWARE: Roku Streaming Stick ($50)

MOST AFFORDABLE: Roku Streaming Stick

ALSO WORKS WITH: Fire TV ($100), other Roku Models, Apple TV ($149 — Google and Amazon require an iOS or macOS device)
For Children and Families
Netflix offers a wide selection of content, both educational and entertaining, along with original children’s programming like the recent “Voltron” reboot. It also offers the option to create a children’s profile that lets you limit viewing to particular ratings or age levels. In addition, Netflix has a new partnership with Disney that will make more Disney films available for streaming.

PBS Kids Now lets you stream recent episodes of PBS shows, and the selection is updated every week with the latest episodes of most shows. Amazon Instant Video also has children’s content and its own custom children’s programming, as well as FreeTime Unlimited, a selection of curated shows, apps and games for children for a monthly fee ($3 for Amazon Prime members, $5 for nonmembers). However, FreeTime Unlimited is available only on Amazon’s own hardware.

Sling TV also offers a children’s package for those who want to stream Nick Jr., Disney Channel, Disney Junior, Cartoon Network and more.

BEST SERVICE: Netflix ($8 to $12/month)

BEST HARDWARE: Roku Streaming Stick ($50)

MOST AFFORDABLE: Roku Streaming Stick (except for FreeTime Unlimited), Amazon Fire TV ($100)

ALSO WORKS WITH: Apple TV ($149), other Roku models

Why Cord-Cutting Still Isn’t Perfect
There are still downsides to cord-cutting. J.D. Power & Associates, a research firm that collects feedback on brands and products from consumers, said customer satisfaction scores were highest among “cord stackers” – people with traditional TV packages who also subscribed to online video services. What made cord-cutters less satisfied were two factors: customer care and value, according to J.D. Power.

For customer care, cord-cutters may run into problems more often than traditional TV subscribers, said Kirk Parson, a senior director of telecommunications research at J.D. Power. The streaming content provider may be experiencing issues. For example, earlier this month, Netflix suffered a failure after the release of the new show “Luke Cage.” Your Wi-Fi connection might be spotty, or your internet provider may be experiencing issues. It’s tough to tell.

For value, cutting the cord isn’t very cheap if you then subscribe to multiple services to gain access to a diverse set of content. For cable subscribers, paying one bill is less of a hassle than juggling multiple bills. And even after you subscribe to multiple streaming services, there is still some content that you may miss out on because it is available only via cable or satellite, like some TV shows or live sports events.

“I would love to have the ability to pick and choose what I want as opposed to having four different services,” Mr. Parson said. “I think we’ll get there, but right now it’s frustrating for consumers to get what they want.”

© 2016 The New York Times Company.

The content you have chosen to save (which may include videos, articles, images and other copyrighted materials) is intended for your personal, noncommercial use. Such content is owned or controlled by The New York Times Company or the party credited as the content provider. Please refer to nytimes.com and the Terms of Service available on its website for information and restrictions related to the content.

%d bloggers like this: