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    by Published on 11-21-2017 04:53 PM

    We may compete with the biggest names in retail, but believe it or not Solid Signal is still a small business! We take care of you like only a small, dedicated group can, that that's the Solid Signal difference! We offer tech support, easy returns, and we have experts who can help you get the best home theater or commercial experience. Small Business Saturday is this week, and I hope you'll check out Solid Signal, where you'll find the best in satellite, antenna, cellular, and more!
    by Published on 11-21-2017 03:14 PM
    1. Categories:
    2. Auto/Marine,
    3. Satellite

    If you have satellite TV on your boat you know that voltage matters. Boats generally have 12 volt DC current, but larger boats will have an AC inverter so you can plug in anything you want. Now, that's fine if you're staying in the US but hey... I'm speaking to you really wealthy folks out there. If you sail across the world then you're just as likely to have 220 or 240 volt current running through the vessel.

    Your average American doesn't see 220 volt power much except when connecting appliances, but it's the standard in much of the world. If you plug in a 110 volt device (as everything in the US is) into a 220 volt outlet, something's going poof or getting fried, sure as shooting. You can use a very expensive travel transformer to make sure you don't have that problem, but there's a better way -- make sure all the things you want to have on your vessel support multiple voltages.

    The key is looking on the power supply and seeing the rating. The picture above is from a DIRECTV HR24-500 and it shows the voltage input is between 100 and 240 volts, between 50 and 60 hertz. If you see that on everything you bring onboard, you'll have no problem. The print might be really small or really fine but it's always there. If you have a multivoltage power supply then all you need is the right cord.

    In the case of DIRECTV receivers, the HR24-200, HR24-500, H24-200, and H24-700 all have multivoltage power supplies. The HR24-100 and H24-100 do not. Some older receivers also have multivoltage power supplies.

    To plug one of these compatible receivers into a 220-240 volt outlet, you need the cord that's right for your country. Solid Signal doesn't carry them due to the high price of importation, but you can find them on ebay or amazon's localized site for the country where your boat was built. The side that plugs into a DIRECTV receiver is called a polarized C7 and using that search term will get you what you want. All power cords are just wires so any generic power cord that fits both sides will work.

    It's worth noting that technically it's against your warranty to use any cord but the one supplied by DIRECTV but if you have a multivoltage power supply the odds of having any sort of a problem are going to be pretty slim.
    by Published on 11-21-2017 02:06 PM
    1. Categories:
    2. TV Antennas

    Our podcaster lays it out for you in a quick, 5-minute podcast -- you probably won't need a different antenna if you plan to get those new broadcasts everyone's talking about, and you shouldn't put off buying an antenna today. Everything's going to be all right, and after you finish listening, check out Solid Signal - Signal Solutions including HDTV Antennas, DIRECTV and DISH Network satellite equipment and home entertainment supplies and accessories for the best in antennas!

    Listen to the podcast your way! Just choose one of the following:
    Option 1: Click on the image above to stream the podcast in your browser.
    Option 2 Search iTunes for "Solid Signal" (click here if you have iTunes on this device)
    Option 3: Click here to download the podcast in MP3 format.
    Option 4: Paste the following link into your favorite podcast program: forums.solidsignal.com/podcasts/solidsignal.xml
    by Published on 11-21-2017 09:22 AM
    1. Categories:
    2. TV Antennas,
    3. Satellite
    Article Preview

    It's really happening. DISH has blacked out 28 local CBS and CW affiliates in a very impactful fee fight. This isn't the first time DISH and CBS have duked it out, but the last time it was during the summer. This time, it's during the November/December break, but if this goes into January it could be pretty scary for millions who enjoy CBS programs.
    by Published on 11-20-2017 12:23 PM
    1. Categories:
    2. Cell Phones
    Article Preview

    One of the real problems with today's cell phones is, surprisingly they're not as good at taking voice calls as older phones. In fact, this AT&T flip phone performs as well or better than any $1,000 phone and you can find it for under $50. Sure, it doesn't do ...
    by Published on 11-20-2017 12:21 PM
    1. Categories:
    2. Satellite
    Article Preview

    Updated for Winter 2018!

    It's more confusing than ever. When you're planning your home viewing, you may be considering putting DIRECTV in every room. There's a little more to it than just running a cable. You need to be using the right satellite dish and you need to understand how DIRECTV thinks about your home system.

    You might think of the number of black boxes in the house, but DIRECTV thinks in terms of "tuners." In DIRECTV parlance, ...
    by Published on 11-20-2017 10:58 AM
    1. Categories:
    2. TV Antennas
    Article Preview

    Has it already begun? According to Cord Cutters News, Phoenix, Arizona will be the first city in the US to start pilot broadcasts using the ATSC 3.0 next-generation broadcast standard. Ten stations in that market will begin simulcasts using the new technology "as early as" next spring. ...
    by Published on 11-19-2017 01:18 PM
    1. Categories:
    2. Misc. Gadgets,
    3. Cell Phones

    I've seen the future, and it's wireless. Obviously. Who wants wires? Although wireless charging has been around since 2010 (and we have the embarrassing video to prove it) it's finally taking off now that both Apple and Samsung have embraced the Qi wireless charging standard.

    Wireless charging isn't such a hard thing to do, you just pump enough power through something and it will transfer to something else over a very small distance. The trick is doing it safely, making sure that power's only being transferred when needed, and keeping heat buildup to a minimum so nothing explodes (cough Samsung cough.) The Qi standard is already proven and you'll find it everywhere from cars to coffeeshops... and of course at Solid Signal.

    You'll want to get a Qi charging mat for your desk at work and anywherethat you lay your phone for a long period of time. Although Qi charging is slower than regular charging, it's still better than no charging at all. If your car doesn't have one built in, you'll probably want one for your car too, if there's a place you can put the phone without it sliding all around all over the place.

    Because the Qi standard has been around for a while, you'll find a great selection of charging pads and mats at SolidSignal.com right now, even though Apple is only just now jumping in. The new iPhones will drive a lot of people to wireless charging, but the Samsung crowd has been there for a while already, of course.

    Shop now!
    by Published on 11-19-2017 12:31 PM
    1. Categories:
    2. Satellite

    When you turn on your DIRECTV Genie Mini Clients, are you greeted with a blue screen that says "Updating" or "Flashing the update?" This was a pretty rare occurrence until recently. Occasionally you'd wake up in the middle of the night to a flashing light, or you'd get a message that your client was in power saver mode after 4 hours of inactivity, but that's about all you got. Lately a lot of users have been reporting not only reboots but also the blue screen when they turn it on.

    If your Genie Mini Client reboots in the middle of the night, or if it's on when you know you shut it off, or even if you get a blue screen, this is perfectly normal. DIRECTV is rolling out a whole new user interface for its Genie DVRs and it's required several rounds of updates, especially for the C61K 4K Genie Mini. This new menu system is DIRECTV's biggest change in half a decade so it's taking a lot of work to identify and squash bugs as they come.

    My guess is, everything will settle down in a month or two after the rollout is complete. In the meantime, all I can say is enjoy the light show.
    by Published on 11-18-2017 02:44 PM
    1. Categories:
    2. Online/MobileTV
    Article Preview

    I'm taking the reins of Streaming Saturday to give you an important public service announcement. If you've signed up for CBS All Access just so you can watch Star Trek Discovery then it's time to cancel it, at least for now. Discovery won't be back until January 7, 2018 and unless you like watching ...

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