They Didn't Ask Me (dr_phil_physics) wrote,
They Didn't Ask Me

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Our First HDTV! GIANT 7" Screen!

Kitchen Convenience

When we moved to the U.P. in January 1984, we hooked up our old B&W TV to cable. Turns out Calumet-Laurium had a very early CATV (Community Antenna Television) system -- in 1984 we got 12 channels. The next year the cable expanded and one of the new stations was going to be WGN out of Chicago.

Cubs! WGN was still showing every Cubs game, so this meant a trip to American on Marquette to get a Sony 13" color TV and a VCR. (grin)

That was fine for the living room, but our funny little old ex-mining company rental house had an oddly shaped kitchen -- completely out of sight of the living room. So at K-Mart, one day, we found a tiny cube of a 4.5" B&W TV, which I was able to hook up to the cable with a splitter, so Mrs. Dr. Phil could have the TV on in the kitchen, too. And Cubs!

We probably got about ten years out of that TV, until the weight of the cable, F-connector, transformer to pigtails, pigtails to supplied mini-jack just couldn't make the antenna connection any more. We replaced that with a somewhat larger color unit, which proved unreliable and it eventually died.

Then we got a Phillips Magnavox TV, larger still, which "just" fit under the cabinet and on top of the old microwave.

Something broke internally, so that it couldn't use the remote, but we still used it slaved to the VCR's channel selector from the living room, so that wasn't too bad. Then last year the microswitch controlling the power relay got squirrely -- Mrs. Dr. Phil nursed it along by rapidly cycling the switch til it deigned to come on. But sometime in 2011 even that didn't work.

Shopping Expedition

Saturday we went to see Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy, then hit Schuler's on Alpine to buy some discounted 2012 calendars. Nearby, in what had been a Linens and Things, there was a brand new ABC Warehouse discount appliance store and Mrs. Dr. Phil suggested we see if they had a tiny TV.

So I asked if they had something like a 9" TV that could still take an analog signal -- some of the small TVs we'd seen online could only do HDTV. What they had included a GPX 7" LCD HDTV DVD Portable player -- the same discount brand as our first 4.5" B&W -- which as you can see, fits quite nicely. Hell, it came with a car DC power adapter and has both an SD card slot and a USB socket so you can use it as a digital picture frame, too. (grin) Which we are unlikely to disconnect it from its perch. (double-grin)

Like it's always been there.

Last time I was in an ABC Warehouse, probably ten years ago, it was a dark depressing warehouse piled up with boxes. And they didn't have what I was looking for. But years of competing with the big box stores, and this new store was brightly lit, well stocked and had a number of helpful staff. And the $86 price ended up cheaper than any of the online prices, so we did well.

Mrs. Dr. Phil is happy now. And I'll be able to check school closings come the bad weather. Of course, now when we mute the TV in the living room, we once again discover that the sound is still on in the kitchen. (grin)

Dr. Phil
Tags: allendale, laurium, technology, tv

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