It doesn't matter if you have a $15,000 spectacularly enormous flat-screen TV, if the brightness, color, contrast, tint, and color temperature presets are off, your picture won't be worth a dime. The Datacolor SpyderTV ($200) is a device you hook up to your computer and attach to your TV screen to help you optimize your display so you can watch movies exactly how the directors intended. And the SpyderTV supports every kind of TV — Plasma, RPTV, DLP, LCD and CRT TVs.
So you want a big screen, but you don’t want a huge TV taking up space? Well, the MovieTime Projector/DVD Player from Optoma ($1400) fits the bill nicely. With a native 16:9 aspect ratio and a built-in DVD player, it’s perfect for displaying a movie or the big game on an open wall, and the 1000 lumens of brightness with a 4000:1 contrast ratio make sure you’ll be able to see all the action — day or night.
So you’ve got an HDTV. And a TiVo. And a surround system. And a, well, you get the idea — you’ve got a lot of devices, and they all have a different remote. Instead of fighting a losing battle with them, replace them with the Harmony 880 Universal Remote from Logitech ($240). It features a color LCD screen, an activity based control scheme, controls for TiVo and DVRs, and a built-in rechargeable battery with a recharging dock. It’s so simple, even the oldest member of the family can figure it out — as long as they aren’t senile and think it’s a hot dog or something.
Aristarkh Chernyshev must have been having quite a good time when he developed the idea for the TeleBlaster, but we’re glad he did. The TeleBlaster ($2000) is kind of tiny for a real TV — the screen is only seven inches — but the set can distort the picture both by changing colors and by stretching the image. Of course, if you want to put yourself through the same torture, there is a camera built-in — so you can watch your house-guests get stretched and squeezed like they were at a taffy factory.