Although many others could do a much better job offering these tips, I’m doing it out of the great sense of frustration I’ve had during the transition to High Definition broadcasting and the plethora of new TVs and video options. Please add links via the comments if you have a good source of hookup information.
For the folks out there who are easily frustrated and don’t like setting things up I’d encourage using your Cable folks or “Geek squad” or other services to set up systems rather than working on them yourself, as the number of options has become so great it’s hard to “get it all right”.
HD TV Hookup Help:
Generally you’ll want to follow the diagrams included with your cable box and/or TV set since individual items can vary. Try to visualize the “ins and outs” as best you can, recognizing that there are basically either audio or video signals coming in and out of each component. Sometimes these run on separate cables (as in the old style AV jacks), sometimes they run on the same cable (as in HDMI). You will generally only use a few of the total connection points available on a new device, so don’t get overwhelmed by the many options – most are simply different ways to skin the audio / video cat.
Why NON HD programs can have worse picture quality on your fancy new TV: http://forums.soundandvisionmag.com/showthread.php?75220-Non-HDTV-content-on-HDTV-worse-than-on-SDTV
I’m floored by how many people do not think this is an important and frustrating issue as we transition to “all HD all the time”. In general terms your expensive new TV will give you INFERIOR picture for standard TV. Eventually SD TV signals will go away but that’s not the case yet.
POSSIBLE SOLUTIONS: Play with your TV Video display options via the TV setup screen to see if you can improve the standard picture. For people with “mostly HD” channels this may not be important, but if you only get a handful of HD channels you may be frustrated with the new TV.
Hookup your OLD VCR to NEW TV: http://www.ehow.com/how_5783352_attach-vcr-new-lcd-tv.html
In general you’ll want to consider getting new DVD player (and perhaps “surround sound” audio equipment with your new TV. Even $150 will get you a decent HD disk player with a modest audio “surround sound” setup that offers a great movie experience. However if you have a lot of old video tapes you may want a combination DVD Video player.
TO BE CONTINUED …