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Old 03-28-2010, 10:32 AM   #1
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No more DVDs - digital flat screen hookup

I've finished the upgrade of all things Audio/Visual of my Airstream. When we purchased it last fall, it came with the factory installed Sony speakers, model XS-T1641, and a Sony CD deck, model CDX-F5000.

The previous owners had removed the television in the living room but left behind a useless mount.

So I decided that it was the time to upgrade everything.

I purchased two 23" Samsung LCD TVs, model 2333HD.



One was going to be installed in the "living room", the other in the bedroom.

I got two Kanto swivel, articulating mounts.

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Old 03-28-2010, 10:34 AM   #2
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I got a new CD car deck, a Kenwood KDC-MP345U.

Also picked up two Western Digital Media Players (WD TV).

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Old 03-28-2010, 10:36 AM   #3
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Got 2 sets of Alpine speakers, SPS-600.

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Old 03-28-2010, 10:41 AM   #4
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We started by installing the televisions, and added 9"x9" square pieces of aluminum on the other side of the wall as support braces.

We then installed 2 floating shelves above the tvs - they measure 14" W x 5.25" D (from Sears).

(this picture is from the Sears website):







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Old 03-28-2010, 10:49 AM   #5
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The Western Digital media players are attached to the tv w/ HDMI connections, and a hard drive is attached to the media players.

Essentially, there's no more need for DVDs in the trailer anymore. I digitized my entire library, and now have hundreds of movies at my fingertips. No more DVDs to get scratched, lost, and now we don't have to lug around all those discs.

After we installed the tvs, we brought the Airstream to a guy who specializes in marine audio-visual installs. He replaced the 4 Sony speakers in the ceiling and on the underside of the cabinet above the sofa. He replaced the Sony car deck, and also installed an Alpine amplifier and a Pioneer 800W subwoofer under the sofa (don't have the models for those).





When we watch a movie in the living area, the sound knocks people's socks off. It's amazing, not to mention I love the fact that I don't have any DVDs kicking around.

The bedroom has the same type of video setup. It wasn't pre-wired for speakers in the factory, so we don't have any speakers on the underside of the cabinet over the bed. No matter. I'm the only female in my family, so if the boys want to watch Transformers for 50th time, I'm happy as a clam in the bedroom, watching my favourite movies with my wireless headphones.
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Old 03-28-2010, 10:58 AM   #6
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Wow, Michelle, great upgrades!!! I bet the Bossa Nova sounds great on those Alpine speakers, eh? How heavy are the 23" TVs?

I still need to upgrade my audio system. It's still has the vintage 8-track and analog radio and the original speakers. I'm going to go with a Bose system radio and speakers.
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Old 03-28-2010, 11:20 AM   #7
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Hi Mike,

The TVs weigh just under 14 lbs each - the mounts (from Costco) can handle between 19" to 37", weighing up to 77 lbs, according to the manufacturers' specs.

I like the Bose systems too - I'm wanting to get one of their wireless soundwave systems for home use to listen to my music from my computer...
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Old 03-28-2010, 12:42 PM   #8
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Well, I'll be horn-swoggled! You sure did a nice job on that A-V system, Michelle! C'est formidable!

Do you notice any difference at all in the "ripped" versions of your DVD movies?
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Old 03-28-2010, 12:57 PM   #9
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nice report mac'

thanks 4 sharing.

i've been using hard drives for flicks 4 several years...

somewhere 'round 4.5 TB of moving pictures cataloged and growing.

for boondocking the hd/puter combo uses less juice than spinning dvdz in a playa.

using a real tele (vs mac screen) adds another dimension, but will be temporary...

since a PROJECTOR (led/lcd) will eventually replace the flat screen.

aage...

rip quality is largely dependent on format and how BIG a space one is willing to give the archived version...

most of mine are 1to1 or low compression (20-40%)...

with b/w or old fuzzy flicks, old tv show formats, or small viewing screens more compression is ok...

but with HD or remastered films NO compression is better viewing (unless u r iPODn'/pocket watchin' .

(somehow i still manage to carry 100+ dvds when rving, since i enjoy rippin' on the road too)

cheers
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Old 03-28-2010, 10:19 PM   #10
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2air

The cornvenience aside, you are saying that there's no difference between a 1:1 ripped DVD and the original disc? Just curious, cuz I'm wanting to go that way, tew.
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Old 03-28-2010, 11:17 PM   #11
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...you are saying that there's no difference between a 1:1 ripped DVD and the original disc?...
yes, no diff, basically.

keep in mind, this means the rip is 4-8 gb depending on single or DL dvd movies..and blue ray is even larger files.

the video will be identical depending on application used.

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Old 03-29-2010, 06:24 AM   #12
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I have a number of hard drives - the one with the most movies on it (I call it the Big Pig) is 2 tb, and from that I copy whatever movies I want to a much smaller hd - most often a 500gb Western Digital My Passport. The smaller ones fit nicely on the floating shelves.

Each file is around 4-7gb give or take so I've always got a very good selection at my fingertips.

I originally was toying around with installing large monitors instead of the televisions, but for the few weeks per year that I'm in a resort campground with all the amenities like cable, I wanted to be able to watch local news without fighting with the wifi.

Bottom line is I'm very pleased to be free from the DVDs. Now all I'm doing is waiting on these special handles I ordered - they look like circles that mount onto the wall, so I can properly velcro the TV when we're on the road.
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Old 03-29-2010, 07:49 AM   #13
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Any suggestions for a 'do-it-yourself' upgrade to our sound system would be appreciated. What a setup you have and we're envious as we have absolutely no skills when it comes to audio/visual installations. We've had two flat screen TV/DVD players, one in the main Salon and one in the bedroom, all wall mounted and wired to our MotoSat dish on the roof. Improvements need to be made to the sound as all we get is what comes from the TV speakers which definitely doesn't blow our socks off. There must be a way to customize the sound system for each room. Any suggestions or ideas would be appreciated. Thanks in advance guys and gals.
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Old 03-29-2010, 08:21 AM   #14
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ZoominC6 - The Bambi came with the Audio Video package, so there's no shortage of speakers. Two over the dinette, two over the bed, and two rather large external speakers which have about 40 ft. of cable and hooks into a 4-way flat trailer plug on the edge of the belly pan near the door. These take up a lot of room, so I was thinking about going wireless with something smaller. That way I could place them where I want.

I've heard AS pre-wires most of their units, so chances are you may have some wiring already installed behind a receptacle..
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Old 03-29-2010, 09:21 AM   #15
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Thanks SilverRanger. Ours came with speakers in the bedroom and salon as well and most likely I could intercept the wiring somewhere. I'll look into that one and maybe my owner's notebook will have some diagrams or wire color code information.

The wireless option is definitely interesting so I need to get on an internet search engine and see what I might learn. All this new technology is so interesting except the learning curve for we "Old Schoolers". Thanks.
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Old 03-29-2010, 03:23 PM   #16
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Wireless speakers look like an easy enough modification from what I see. Just takes money.
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Old 03-29-2010, 04:16 PM   #17
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Michelle & Family...

If you don't mind me asking - how hard and how did you snake those HDMI cables? Inquiring minds wanna know.

John
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Old 03-29-2010, 04:32 PM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Macfrodge View Post
The Western Digital media players are attached to the tv w/ HDMI connections, and a hard drive is attached to the media players.

Essentially, there's no more need for DVDs in the trailer anymore. I digitized my entire library, and now have hundreds of movies at my fingertips. No more DVDs to get scratched, lost, and now we don't have to lug around all those discs.
Very nice set up. I am not familiar with the Western Digital media player but it sounds like something that is perfect for traveling in the Airstream. How do you add DVD moves/music to the hard drive. Thanks

Don
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Old 03-30-2010, 07:14 AM   #19
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Michelle & Family...

If you don't mind me asking - how hard and how did you snake those HDMI cables? Inquiring minds wanna know.

John
Hi John,

The HDMI cables aren't snaked behind the wall. We looked at the setup prior to upgrading, and decided it wasn't worth it trying to run new cables behind the walls. So we worked with what we had - which is RCA composite cabling.

The RCA composite cables are hooked to the receiver deck at one end, and into the TV at the other end.

The Media Player box is connected to the TV via HDMI - so those cables only run from the media player box on the floating shelf to the TV below it.

In a perfect world, we could connect the system and get true HD picture and sound, but we figured this was the next best thing.

And boy oh boy... the sound. We put on The Matrix one evening (gotta love the driveway camping) and The Lord of the Rings the other night - and I think I need to adjust the bass a wee bit... I'm afraid rivets are going to start popping!
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Old 03-30-2010, 07:33 AM   #20
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Very nice set up. I am not familiar with the Western Digital media player but it sounds like something that is perfect for traveling in the Airstream. How do you add DVD moves/music to the hard drive. Thanks

Don
Hi Don,

I use Xilisoft DVD ripper to rip my DVDs. I have an extensive DVD collection, and was really tired of dragging the discs around or forgetting to bring some into the trailer before a trip, etc... So while it takes a bit of time (I usually set it up in the evening and let it do its thing overnight) it's worth it.

However.... it's worth mentioning that I'm from Canada, and there are different laws w/r to digital media rights. From what I understand, it is essentially illegal for residents of the USA to make digital copies of DVDs - even if they own it, thanks to DMCA, or Digital Millennium Copyright Act.

However, I'm not a lawyer, nor an American citizen, so there may be better comments pertaining to this issue.

Cheers!
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