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  1. Darren H

    $3000 budget for projector and screen

    I'm a long-time member of this forum but only visit occasionally these days -- usually in moments like this, when I'm seeking feedback on hardware purchases. Nine years ago I outfitted my home theater with an NEC HT-1000 projector (4:3 native) and an 80"x60" Da-Lite motorized, tensioned screen...
  2. Darren H

    Recommend an internal DVD drive (for desktop)?

    The DVD drive in my desktop has been giving me fits for a couple months now, and I think it's finally crapped out. Any suggestions for a relatively inexpensive DVD+/-RW drive? - Windows XP Home - Pentium 4 - 2.8GHz - 512 MB RAM Thanks, Darren
  3. Darren H

    Midi / keyboard / recording advice

    It's been more than a decade since I was last in the market for a keyboard and midi hardware/software. Can anyone point me to good online resources and discussion forums? I'm hoping to put together a small home studio for scoring films and am eager to begin research and auditioning. Thanks.
  4. Darren H

    Some pics of my (almost) finished HT

    The installation was completed about two weeks ago. There's still quite a bit of painting to do, but, otherwise, I'm thrilled with how everything has turned out. http://www.longpauses.com/house/ht.htm
  5. Darren H

    Hummer H2

    Is it true that the H2 is essentially a Suburban -- same frame, same engine -- with a different body? I remember hearing that once, but can't seem to track down a reliable source.
  6. Darren H

    My May 25 deadline

    My wife and I will be closing on a new home on Wednesday. When we first toured the house, I mentioned casually that the mostly-finished basement, with some fine-tuning, would make for a fantastic home theater. She's made a number of allusions to it since, so today at lunch I nailed her down...
  7. Darren H

    Sony KV-40XBR800 owners?

    I've read all of the online reviews that I can find, but I would love to hear any first-hand opinions from Sony KV-40XBR800 owners. In particular, I'm curious to hear if anyone has run into the reported discoloration problems on the sides of the screen. I'm looking for a fairly large 4:3 set...
  8. Darren H

    4:3 RPTVs?

    I'll soon be in the market for a mid-sized RPTV that will be used mostly for watching television and DVDs. Because of the amount of television I'll be watching, and because the majority of my DVDs are 1.33:1 and 1.66:1, I'm planning to buy a 4:3 set that has a 16:9 mode. I'm looking closely at...
  9. Darren H

    Bruce Cockburn's You've Never Seen Everything

    I picked up a copy of Cockburn's latest after work yesterday. I haven't listened to it enough to comment on the songs themselves, but I did do 30 minutes or so of "serious" listening (alone, in the dark, at an appropriate volume on my main system) and I'm very disappointed by this mix. I'm...
  10. Darren H

    2001 Music Question

    Just a quick question: What piece of music accompanies that first shot of the Discovery? It's the scene that follows directly after the cut from the moon monolith. The piece is very somber, featuring strings only. Thanks.
  11. Darren H

    Help: two "finally buying a new computer" questions

    It's been four and a half years since I last bought a computer. Two quick questions for the experts: 1) I'll probably get a Dell Dimension 8250. Because the university I work for has a contract with Dell, I can get a decent discount. When is the best time to buy? Will there be post-Christmas...
  12. Darren H

    TN Budget Crisis -- I'm "Non-essential"

    I don't know if it has made the national news yet, but as of midnight CST, the state of Tennessee is officially closed for business. Because political content is taboo around here, I'll just summarize the situation by saying that, like many states, we face a major deficit ($800 million), but our...
  13. Darren H

    Rochester, MN?

    My wife and are headed to Rochester for a few days. Any advice, pointers, things to see/do? Restaurant suggestions would be nice, too. ;) Thanks.
  14. Darren H

    Gilmore Girls Finale

    For those of you (Patrick) who were so frustrated with Lorelai's outburst a few weeks ago, I hope that you were gratified to see the repercussions: Luke is still deeply hurt by everything she said. Just another sign that the writers of this show are in control of the material. My two favorite...
  15. Darren H

    My Annual Upgrade: Studio CC

    Because my wife and I are still students, my upgrade process is slower than most: Spring 2000: I discovered HTF while looking for advice on a $300-$350 5.1 receiver. After two months of lurking, I spent nearly four times that much on a Denon 3300 and small subwoofer (Klipsch KSW-12). Spring...
  16. Darren H

    Stephen Ambrose caught plagiarizing

    Have any of you been following this story? Stephen Ambrose -- author of "Band of Brothers," "The Wild Blue," "Undaunted Courage," and about 20 other books -- has been caught plagiarizing entire passages from other historians. The evidence is so convincing I have deliberately used the word...
  17. Darren H

    Just had an MRI . . .

    . . . and I didn't enjoy it a bit. Nothing like spending a half hour enclosed in a tomb, listening to something like a jackhammer, as giant magnets scramble your DNA. Very bizarre experience. The worst part was that at some point I drifted into that murky "not quite asleep" zone. When I...
  18. Darren H

    Adrian Belew is coming to Knoxville!

    How cool is that? I've only seen Belew once -- when he backed Bowie on the Sound+Vision tour. But in February he will be playing with the Bears in a small club in Knoxville. I should get the chance to chat with him for a while.
  19. Darren H

    Help me choose my next upgrade

    Those of you who have read many of my past posts know that I'm an HT/film enthusiast on a budget. Grad school does that to a guy. So, now I have some post-Christmas cash and am debating my next purchase. It will probably be my only hardware purchase for ten months or so. Here are the...
  20. Darren H

    Major HT Upgrade

    Russ Herschelmann at SGHT always says that, when designing your home theater, you should begin with the seats. Yesterday, my wife and I received our Christmas present, a beautiful new couch, which replaces an embarrassingly ratty remnant from our undergrad days. I can't believe I've hit the...
  21. Darren H

    Question for web developers

    How do I prevent link destinations from appearing in the status bar at the bottom of the browser? For instance, if you hover your mouse over my signature link right now, you will see http://www.longpauses.com at the bottom of the browser. I'm building a learning application and want to make it...
  22. Darren H

    Question about Windows Explorer

    Here's one of those Windows quirks that annoys me several times every day. Is it possible to set Windows Explorer to a single default view? I like to browse my folders in "Details" view, but it seems to default to "Large Icons." Any way I can change this? Doing so would probably save me 30...
  23. Darren H

    Favorite Wines

    I was very disappointed to discover yesterday that, in all of our preparations for our Thanksgiving meal, my wife and I had forgotten to pick up a bottle of wine. By the time I realized that we had forgotten, all of the local liquor stores were closed (no wine in grocery stores in Tennessee)...
  24. Darren H

    Easy-to-use Discussion Boards

    My boss has requested that I add a discussion board to our company web page. I've never managed a board from this end. Any suggestions for starting points? Thanks
  25. Darren H

    Welcome to East Tennessee - notify The Onion

    Yes, this is an actual article from the Knox News Sentinel. I'm surrounded by idiots. --- http://www.knoxville.com/kns/local_n...844429,00.html --- Greasy substance on magazine causes scare in Maryville By Bryan Mitchell, News-Sentinel staff writer MARYVILLE - Three women spent the...
  26. Darren H

    Dreyer's Day of Wrath (1943)

    Recently, I've begun jotting down personal responses to the films I'm watching. They're part review, part diary response, and filled with spoiler. I'd be curious to hear other responses to Day of Wrath. --- Title: Day of Wrath (Vredens Dag) - 1943 Director: Carl Th. Dreyer Nationality...
  27. Darren H

    Suggestions for simple Web password?

    Calling all web gurus . . . I'm looking for a simple trick/script for protecting a single page on my company web site. This is hardly government secrets we're protecting here -- just minutes from meetings. I'm looking for something that will discourage casual browsers from digging around. Thanks
  28. Darren H

    I knew that FSU would be sub-par this year, but . . .

    . . . that was just plain embarrassing. When the 'Noles gave up a touchdown to UAB two weeks ago, I realized that they would probably get horse-whipped by both Florida and Miami this year. But to be humiliated in Chapel Hill -- not in a close game like their loss to Virginia, or because of a...
  29. Darren H

    Survivor fans: Guess who I saw yesterday?

    Guess it's one of the "perks" of living in Knoxville. Yesterday I was downtown and saw Tina Wesson signing autographs. Damn, I'm cool. ------------------ "I am a pitbull on the pantleg of opportunity." -- g.W.b.
  30. Darren H

    The HTF reading (yes, reading) challenge

    Read 10 in 2001 Over the next 13 months, I'm going to be forced to spend much more time behind a book than in front of the TV (full time job and three comprehensive exams to prepare for). Anyone care to join me? The idea is pretty simple (as is the challenge). The AFI and S&S challenges have...