Oct 24 2011

Blog - Blu-ray Releases - October 25, 2011

Oh how I wanted to pick Wrong Turn 4 just to get a reaction from you guys, but alas I played it conservative this week. Jurassic Park Trilogy, just in time for the holidays...although you can save some money and watch Terra Nova that is basically the same thing, right? Dazed and Confused is a classic if you've never seen it. And Attack the Block was mildly entertaining, a UK film of a gang who gets attacked by Aliens...okay, it was kinda dumb, but I've seen worse.

MissingRemote's Pick of the Week

Really a no brainer given the competition this week, but I'll admit that my expectations were quite high going into Captain America, and it did somewhat disappoint. The first Avenger, I honestly was not a fan of these comics growing up so the story was new to me. The movie is quite long, but I found it to be entertaining. Although I didn't buy the CGI for one second when he was a whimpy kid, his head was WAY too big for the body. The action sequences were decent, but I think he's just not as compelling a superhero as some of the others. Just my opinion...

Oct 21 2011

Blog - Win a Fractal Design Core 3000 by Showing Off Your Case in Need

Core 3000


As you all have noticed, we've been making a much more concerted effort to give some attention and focus to chassis for use in your home theater. But as we've learned in the past, the home theater is often one of the more neglected locations for financial investment. So Missing Remote is teaming up with our friends at Fractal Design (check out their Facebook page) to try to help you out, and are giving away a Core 3000 chassis!

We want to make sure whoever wins this chassis really needs it, so to enter is simple--reply to this thread and attach a picture of your case. We'll filter down to what we feel are the top 10 cases most in need of an upgrade, and then let the community decide the winner!

You have 30 days to enter, with the only restriction being that you must include a card or sign with your Missing Remote user name in the picture.



Entries will be accepted from 12:00AM PDT on Wednesday, September 28, 2011 through 11:59PM PDT on Monday, October 31, 2011 . Top 10 will be voted by November 5th, and subsequent poll will be submitted for public voting (1 vote per user) for time of 2 weeks.

Oct 18 2011

Blog - Blu-ray Releases - October 17, 2011

Sorry for the hiatus, had a busy travel schedule recently, but I'm back on the regular now! And what a...decent week to return to. A couple good animated films are out there. Fans of the TV show V will be happy to see that released. Most interesting of the week was Red State from writer/director Kevin Smith, from Jay & Silent Bob and Clerks fame--an interesting film with a ton of subplots and even more violence, about a religious group bent on killing a few folks--it's out there, I didn't hate it, but I didn't love it either. Which leaves....

MissingRemote's Pick of the Week

I didn't have the highest expectations for this one, starring Cameron Diaz, Jason Segal and Justin Timberlake, but maybe that's why I was pleasantly surprised by it. Of course it's entirely predictable, but there were definitely enough funny parts for me to make it a recommendation...again, just temper your expectations beforehand.

Sep 12 2011

Blog - Blu-ray Releases - September 13, 2011

Poor Thor, if it was most any other week you would have been the easy pick, but alas not this one. For those not in the comic book "know," Thor is a movie based on the same-titled comic book about a guy who's a god in his world but gets shipped off to Earth as punishment (is it that bad?!) where he gets to date Natalie Portman, poor guy. Then battles ensue--it was a fun movie and will look awesome on BD. Then the other notable one is Spartacus--Gods of the Arena, the prequel to the Spartacus TV series which was just awesome.

MissingRemote's Pick of the Week

Probably the easiest pick in the history of these weekly blogs. If i have to tell you what Star Wars is...then you probably are between the ages of 0-2, or just came from a rock. While I don't agree with all the changes Mr. Lucas has made to the originals, and I wasn't a huge fan of the new ones, it's hard to argue that this isn't a must have in anyone's Blu-ray collection. I mean, it's Luke "friggin" Skywalker people!

Sep 05 2011

Blog - Blu-ray Releases - September 6, 2011

Scarface was an easy pick so I wanted to change it up, but it really is one of the great movies of all time, with a young Al Pacino as Cuban druglord. Fringe and The Office are great TV shows of course, and then a few decent films sprinkled throughout as well. Everything Must Go stars Will Ferrell but there was not many moments of humor in this dark comedy.

MissingRemote's Pick of the Week

I was not sure what to expect going into Hanna, but I was pleased with the results. Hanna is the story of a man raising his daughter to be essentially a spy from the get go, and it takes time to develop and explain why exactly so many people are after them. If you like watching 13-year old girls kick some serious action then you will love this movie. She's no Hit Girl, but it's still fairly entertaining although the plot is a bit thin and the acting is not stellar, but there were some nice twists and I was enjoyed throughout.

Sep 03 2011

Blog - Blog - Migrating Data from one Hard Drive to Another

A short while ago I had a failure in my MythTV server.  Luckily, all of my data was ok so I just transplanted the hard drives and tuners into my development system and was on my way again.  While I had everything open it quickly became obvious exactly how loud my OS hard drive had become.  I knew that it was noisy but the P180 case did a good job of keeping things quiet.  So I figured that now is a good time to replace it as long as I had everything all strewn about anyway.

To give you a bit of background, the OS hard drive that I am starting with is a 10GB PATA drive that is about 10 years old.  The "new" drive is a 250GB drive that is only a couple of years old.  The utility that I used to image the drive is called Clonezilla.  This is a tool that you load on to a bootable drive (i.e. a CD or a USB flash drive).  With both the old and the new drive installed in the PC you boot into Clonezilla, select the drive or partition that you want to back up (clone), select the new drive or partition and wait till everything is copied.  Depending on the amount of data being copied this can take anywhere from a couple of minutes to a couple of hours.

Aug 21 2011

Blog - CableCARD Installation: It's Getting Better


Having just installed my second CableCARD product, I thought it would be good to share my experience. Last December, I posted about my experience installing the Ceton InfiniTV 4. Back then, I had to pay a $75 installation fee and schedule an installer to visit my home only to hand me the CableCARD and call in to have it activated. Meanwhile, set-top box users had the less expensive option of self-installing which hardly seemed fair.

Fast-forward to today when we now have a mandate from the FCC that has brought the self-installation option to CableCARD users. A quick call to my provider, Cox Cable, had a self-installation kit drop-shipped to my front door the next day. I am now required to pay a $20 activation fee which is fair and reasonable. For $20, I get the kit shipped to me and a free return shipping label is included. All the cables needed for installation are also included along with the CableCARD, tuning adapter and installation guide.

Tuning Adapter

The installation guide (attached) is straight-forward and easy to follow. I am positive that even technology luddites could successfully follow the guide. That said, I did run into some snafus in the process.

Aug 11 2011

Blog - Intel i3-2100T and i3-2100: Heatsink and Fan Differences

In many cases, it may not make a lot of sense to purchase the 35W Intel Sandy Bridge T-variant parts because they are typically more expensive than the slight power savings and heat differences can justify in real-world usage. One aspect where the parts shine though is in small form factor (SFF) installations. When it comes to SFF, the height of the heat sink-fan (HSF) is often a concern and an aftermarket solution is typically sought. 

I recently put together a system with an i3-2100T and was pleasantly surprised by just how slim the HSF is. Unfortunately, back when Andrew reviewed the i3-2100T, he did not have access to the retail HSF so you can see it in all of it's glory here. Note that this is not the HSF Intel is working on for SFF installs that we learned about from the DH61AG board review.

The measured height from the top of the board to the top of the HSF is 1-7/16" for the i3-2100T whereas the i3-2100 is 2-1/8". The AA cell pictured is 2" in height. You'll also notice the fan design is different with the i3-2100T fan being slimmer with 11 blades compared to the i3-2100 fan with 7 blades.

Hopefully, you'll find this information useful if you're planning out an installation in a tight space. Photos after the break.

Aug 10 2011

Blog - Catching Up with SiliconDust: A Q&A with President and CEO Theodore D. Head


With the introduction of the SiliconDust HDHomeRun PRIME digital cable tuner (DCT), there are a good number of questions both from the Missing Remote staff and more importantly, our readers. Thus, we took the initiative to seek answers to those questions in an effort to clear up as much uncertainty as possible. Thanks to Theodore D. Head, President and CEO of SiliconDust, for taking the time to respond to our queries.


Q: For those unfamiliar with SiliconDust, tell us a bit about the company. When was it established & what have you made your mark on the market with?

 A: Silicondust USA Inc was established in 2007 with the consumer launch of the HDHomeRun Dual Digital Network Tuner - taking the TV tuner out of your computer and putting on the home network via your router. Allowing the freedom to watch pause record Digital over the air or unencrypted cable anywhere in your home on any windows, mac or linux device - we are the innovators of the Network attached TV Tuner for computers.


Q: We saw an announcement from Elgato on Mac compatibility, how did that come about? How's the feedback been so far? Is this any indication that Mac support might come to your CableCARD tuners?

Aug 07 2011

Blog - ArcSoft TotalMedia Theatre 5 Updated

ArcSoft TotalMedia Theatre 5

If you've been following the development of ArcSoft's Total Media Theatre 5 (TMT5), then you are aware that a beta version of the software introduced automatic refresh rate switching to the rate contained in the content natively based on display capability. There have been a few issues with the beta such as the Windows Media Center version of the player being unable to automatically switch. With the new release of, this problem seems to have been resolved at least from my experience.

Coupled with the latest updates to the Sandy Bridge platform, my personal 24p experience through a home theater PC (HTPC) has never been better *champagne cork popping* Smile. If you're unsure of why 24p is such a big deal, check out our primer on the subject, 24p: What You Should Know

While ArcSoft still considers the automatic refresh rate switching a beta feature, I have not encountered any issues with the latest release. Give it a try and let us know what you think of the release.


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