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  1. Darren H

    $3000 budget for projector and screen

    Thanks, again. I lived with an occasional rainbow effect when I had my HT1000. I don't expect perfection at this price point, but I appreciate the warnings. It's unlikely that I'll have a chance to compare the two.
  2. Darren H

    $3000 budget for projector and screen

    Thanks, guys. Honestly, I'm so amazed by the quality of projector that can now be had for $1,500, I don't have a strong preference for one technology over another. The more I read, the more I'm leaning toward the BenQ.
  3. 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...
  4. Darren H

    Recommend an internal DVD drive (for desktop)?

    Thanks for the help, guys. I'm thinking about ordering an NEC ND-3520A, and the best price I've found is $64.50 from ZipZoomFly.com. Any other advice (about drives or etailers) before I make the plunge? Thanks.
  5. 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
  6. Darren H

    Midi / keyboard / recording advice

    Let's pretend that I have a total budget between $2000-$3000. (I'm not sure if I can justify spending that much, but let's use that figure for now.) How would each of you spend it? Again, I'm limited to a PC, and if I do this I will definitely want to buy a gig-able keyboard. Thanks...
  7. Darren H

    Midi / keyboard / recording advice

    For the immediate future, at least, everything will be PC. My main goal right now is to find a keyboard that could be used for occasional playing out but mostly for home recording. So, for the keyboard, my main priorities are: - piano-like weighted keys - at least five octaves (I doubt 88...
  8. Darren H

    Midi / keyboard / recording advice

    Thanks for the links. Looks like I have a lot of reading to do.
  9. 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.
  10. Darren H

    Some pics of my (almost) finished HT

    I considered the 5900 as well but finally decided that the money I could save with the 2200 would add a bigger bang elsewhere (the motorized screen). I did use the autocalibration feature and have been very pleased with the results. The microphone identified distances to each speaker within an...
  11. Darren H

    Some pics of my (almost) finished HT

    BAM! is right. ;) The dropdown screen ended up costing nearly as much as the projector, but we decided to go ahead with it precisely because we wanted the room to be multi-functional. Plus, I figured that, with the rapid advancements in projector technology, the screen will outlast the HT1000...
  12. 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
  13. Darren H

    Hummer H2

    Thanks, guys. From looking through GM's various websites, it looks like the H2 and the 3/4-ton Suburban share the same Vortec 6000 V8. Is that accurate? For the record, I'm not much of a car guy, but I'm writing an article in which I *need* to get this information correct.
  14. 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.
  15. Darren H

    My May 25 deadline

    Someone just reminded me that I had created this thread and wanted to know if I met my deadline. The short answer is "yes and no." My projector (NEC HT1000) arrived in time for Return of the King, and so we were able to watch the DVD projected at nearly 7' wide. The HT1000 is an amazing piece of...
  16. Darren H

    Cheap Refurb Denon DVD-2200

    I placed an order a few days ago, while the 2200 was still listed, but just received an email informing me that, "Original plans to ship all orders have changed and no more are available."
  17. Darren H

    My budget theater website up "Jones Theater" now open.

    Eric, tell me about your equipment rack. I plan on doing something similar in the coming weeks -- cutting into a wall so that I can access the back of the components from another room (in my case, an unfinished storage room in the basement). Did you build the rack or buy it? Any suggestions...
  18. Darren H

    My May 25 deadline

    Well, like I said, the basement is already mostly finished, so I won't be framing or drywalling, which should save me some time. Fortunately, one of the rooms adjacent to the soon-to-be-HT is unfinished, so I have access to the studs on the back of one wall. I plan to build the equipment cabinet...
  19. 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...
  20. 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...
  21. Darren H

    Widescreen worth it??

    That's a helpful link, Jason. It looks like I could fill that 48" space in my bookshelves with a 48" 16:9 or a 53" 4:3. Check out the comparison on 4:3 NTSC material: 16:9 TV: Your viewing area is 31.4 in(w) x 23.5 in(h) Total viewing area is 737.9 sq in. This is the equivalent of a...
  22. Darren H

    Widescreen worth it??

    My new home has built-in bookshelves in the family room, and cut into the shelves is a space designed for an RPTV. I've decided to fill it with a 4:3 HD with anamorphic squeeze capabilities. Because I'm limited to a set that is 48" wide, and because I plan to watch a high percentage of broadcast...
  23. Darren H

    4:3 RPTVs?

    Thanks for the help, guys. It's been so long since I was last in the market for a TV that I'd forgotten about epinions. Yesterday I visited Best Buy, Circuit City, and both high-end AV shops in my area, and I found one 4:3 RPTV for sale -- the Sony KP-53HS30. It looks like it should do the trick.
  24. Darren H

    4:3 RPTVs?

    Surely I'm not the last person left who sees the value of owning a 4:3 television? Some background . . . My wife and I just put in a contract on a home, and I have a two-stage HT process in mind. First, our formal living room has built-in bookshelves with a space reserved for an RPTV. That's...
  25. 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...
  26. Darren H

    Look up! Prepare the way for ANGELS IN AMERICA

    I'm with you, Patrick and Steve. In performance, Prior's line to Louis, "Fuck you! I'm a prophet!" gets a laugh so long that the actors usually have to wait patiently for the audience to regain its composure. In the film, Prior delivers those words with such bitterness and venom. Downplaying...
  27. 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...
  28. Darren H

    What's your best karaoke number?

    "Ring of Fire"
  29. Darren H

    Female Celebrity (Ultra)- Tournament V. 03 !!!

    Kidman (If Lauren Graham can't win, then Kidman is my second choice)
  30. Darren H

    Directors Poll: Your top 3 favorite directors

    Tarkovsky Dreyer Bergman
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