gadgetry… internet on the tv… why not?

I have yet to talk about a huge subject for guys… gadgets. I love gadgets… any tool that serves multiple purposes well, fits in my pockets, and makes my life easier.. i’ll consider that a gadget worth throwing in the arsenal. However, as we all amass a garrison chock full of metal and circuitry, we need a central hub for it all–the batcave needs a main control console. I mean, where else can Batman look up criminal files, news headlines, analyze crime patterns, maybe watch some news via youtube, and play a little solitaire between crimes? If the batcave was just a closet and a garage there would be no reason to hang out there at all, and that’s no fun.(?)

Alright so the lesson for today is how to make your tv and internet playtime experiences combine into one, kind of. This is partially stemming from the interior design stuff I was going over yesterday, with more focus on the epicenter of it all–the couch-tv-combo.

Step 1: TV

Assuming you have a couch, lets go for tv’s. Flat screen is pretty much a must, and with the prices dropping every year, why not upgrade yourself a little?

Some cheap 32″ LCD’s I found on eBay:

$510 shipped, with free wall-mount.

$560 Olevia Syntax.. I bought one on eBay 2 years ago, best features/quality for the price.

$490 Audiovox, why not?

Step 2: Computer

So are you a Mac or a PC guy? Whichever your choice.. here are the best boxes to go with for throwing under the set.

Mac Mini – the one I linked to here looks like its going for <$300

BOLData Mini PC- heavy duty specs in a little box for $597

Another BOLData guy, but less power (which is fine for this article’s purposes) selling for $353

This ASUS Triple E (EEE) Box is only $300… and looks exactly like a Wii.

Step 3: Cables, Connections, Etc.

I’ll just make a list..

  1. VGA/HDMI/DVI cable (however you can best connect your mini computer to your screen)
  2. Stereo Audio Cable (you can even find this at CVS these days, male/male ended headphone cable)
  3. Wireless keyboard (see below)
  4. Wireless mouse (ebay these guys up too, excellent deals to be had.. or go for the pretty apple ones)
  5. LAN cable or wireless (since this guy won’t be moving, go with LAN for speed/reliability purposes)
  6. Cable ties, electric tape? Just hide the wires or make them neat

Now you have a backup computer, a dvd player, a youtube player, an online movie rental watcher, an internet browser, and a sweet hdtv all in one. Nothing wrong with Apple-TV, and all the other little boxes they have out now.. just why pay nearly the same price when you could get a fully functioning computer and dvd player out of the deal too?

Example shot:

You will never leave the couch again.

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Comments
2 Responses to “gadgetry… internet on the tv… why not?”
  1. RB says:

    Hey Man,
    Awesome site. If you are really interested in making the mac mini a central piece of your home theater then have a look at this site 123macmini.com. They have some awesome information on getting the most out of the mac mini. I have nothing but positive things to say about using mini. Another suggestion which may be somewhat cheaper is a modded original xbox. I use that as a secondary home theater piece and it is pretty bad ass. Hope this helps

  2. Robert says:

    wow, i’m pretty inspired. too bad i don’t have internet, cable, or a flat screen tv… oh well, things to aspire toward.

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