4 Best Gadgets For 2020

With the constant releases and updates of new tech, it’s hard to keep track of everything that becomes available.

As experienced audio visual consultants, we like to keep an eye on the latest gadgets and technology that make their way into our homes. Here, we’ve compiled a list of some of the top gadgets to buy in 2020 that are sure to boost your tech experience!

Philips Somneo Sleep and Wake-Up Light

How do you wake up in the morning? Is it with a violent jolt upon hearing your noisy alarm? Well, that kind of rude awakening is no more with this handy light!

The Somneo light is designed to simulate natural sunrise to help you wake up gently. The level of light gradually brightens before your set alarm time when nature sounds or your chosen radio station will turn on to help wake you up completely.

This gadget is packed with other features that make it user friendly and extra functional. It has a sleek touch-screen interface, a soothing noise sound bank and you can even charge your phone via a USB port.

If you’re looking for a more peaceful sleep and wake-up experience, this is the gadget for you!

Apple AirPods Pro

You’d be hard-pressed to find a tech list that doesn’t mention any Apple products, and the AirPods are definitely worth mentioning!

These wireless earbuds are a step up from their predecessor as they offer noise cancellation technology for a more immersive sound experience. In-ear comfort has also been enhanced as the design has been altered to accommodate a silicone tip.

The AirPods charging case alone is also a brilliant piece of kit. It can offer more than 24 hours of listening time and can be charged with a charging mat or lightning cable.

Many users agree that AirPods remain one of the go-to options for wireless listening.

Pair of AirPods

Osmo Pocket

With the ever-increasing popularity of vlogging and online videos, good-quality handheld cameras are frequently being sought.

The Osmo Pocket is a pocket-sized camera perfect for budding film-makers; the stabilising technology gives you clean, professional-looking shots with 4K-capable capture!

The long handle and intuitive controls make this super-efficient camera easy to use and master. For users that find the in-built preview screen too small, you can also link your phone for a larger view.

UE Megaboom 3

Portable speakers with reliable sound are becoming increasingly popular; if you want to up your speaker game, the UE Megaboom 3 is a great piece of kit.

The Megaboom offers a powerful sound and increased level of durability; it has been designed with outdoor use in mind and will give you solid sound in any location. The cylindrical design allows for an impressive 360-degree sound dispersion that can easily fill up a room and more.

This Bluetooth speaker also has the ability to connect with other UE speakers to create a stereo system, giving you a completely wireless and all-encompassing sound experience.

Two Megaboom speakers

From home entertainment expertise to CCTV installation, find out how JL Audio Visual could take your home tech to the next level!

How Does a TV Aerial Work?

With the ever increasing availability of tech, we’ve all had to become more adept at dealing with various technical issues in our homes. Sometimes it can be hard to keep track of how everything works and how everything needs to be fixed.

As experienced audio visual consultants, we have extensive knowledge about the technology and equipment in your home; this includes TV aerials.

You don’t necessarily need to know the ins and outs of a TV aerial to sit back and enjoy your favourite show. However, it can be helpful to understand how they work in case things start going wrong and your TV’s picture quality isn’t up to your standards.

For the curious mind, we’ve put together a quick summary of how a TV aerial actually works!

What is a TV Aerial?

Essentially, a TV aerial or antenna receives broadcasted television signals from the TV station. Aerials are split into two categories: indoor and outdoor. Indoor antennas are usually located next to or on top of your television set, while outdoor antennas are mounted on top of your house and are exposed to the elements. 

The type of aerial you have can often depend on where your house is located. Outdoor aerials are more appropriate for fringe or rural areas that are far from the transmission stations and therefore more likely to be blocked by natural obstructions like hills and forests. 

You probably don’t give much thought to your television aerial, but they are essential to your viewing experience!

How Does it Work?

So you know where it is, and that it receives signals from the TV station, but how does an aerial actually work?

A TV aerial is made out of metal which allows electromagnetic waves to carry TV signals to the aerial and induce small electrical currents. Your television will then select the appropriate audio and visual information from within the signal.

An aerial is made up of a series of rods and parts. The dipole is the main part that picks up signals and sends them to your TV through the aerial cable.

The directors, as their name suggests, perform the task of directing the signal towards the dipole. The more directors there are on an aerial, the more signal will be directed towards the crucial point; some aerials have between 50 to 90 directors.

The final main part of an aerial is the reflector, also known as the wing. There are usually two reflectors between the dipole. This part of the device both stops the signal from being directed past the dipole and prevents unwanted signals from being received from the back end of the aerial.

What Affects Aerial Performance?

As mentioned before, it is always useful to have a basic understanding of how things work so that you can get the most from them and realise when things have gone wrong!

Many things can affect your aerial’s effectiveness and therefore your TV’s performance.

If your aerial becomes unaligned by poor weather, it will affect the signal you receive, thus interfering with your TV’s picture quality.

Issues like this can be hard to spot and fix on your own, so speaking to a trained engineer is your best bet if you think alignment issues might be your problem.

The aerial cable can also become disconnected or faulty. When you get that ‘no signal’ message on your TV, it could be that your cable has just become loose. This can be remedied easily by making sure it is plugged in securely. If cable problems persist, you may need to replace it.

find your perfect home cinema

Here at JL Audio Visual, we are committed to giving you the best at-home visual and sound experiences. To find out how we could help provide aerial solutions for your home, contact us today!

5 Appliances That Can Interfere With Your Home Wi-Fi Signal

Nowadays, we rely on our Wi-Fi more than ever. From working at home to streaming entertainment, the reliance we place on broadband means we need it to be reliable as often as possible.

Struggling with bad connectivity is a major frustration. Even if you have the best broadband package, it’s possible to experience poor connectivity for a wide range of reasons. One such cause of poor connectivity is the appliances in the home, which can cause interference. Here, we look through some of the most common causes of interference and how you can avoid losing your signal.

How Do Home Appliances Impact Your Wi-Fi Signal?

Wi-Fi in this instance refers to the connection from your device to your Wi-Fi router and not your broadband speed. Here, the connection works similarly to how we tune in to the radio, utilising frequencies to pass data between devices.

However, many home appliances also use radio waves for a range of purposes, or simply produce such frequencies as a result of their activity. When these frequencies collide, their data can be lost, which causes the signal to slow or drop altogether.

Below, we’ve listed some of the most common culprits when it comes to Wi-Fi interference.

Microwaves

One of the most common causes of Wi-Fi interference in the home is the microwave. This is common because both Wi-Fi routers and microwaves use the same frequency. While microwaves are often leak-proof, the reality is that they often emit some of their rays, which can cause interference to nearby Wi-Fi signals.

If your microwave causes significant internet drops while active, it might be because it’s leaking quite a lot of emissions. If it’s an old appliance, consider replacing it with a new one. Alternatively, move any vital components, such as the Wi-Fi router, away from the area, so it doesn’t cause widespread interference.

A stainless steel microwave in a modern kitchen

TVs

Generally, modern TVs shouldn’t be impacting your home Wi-Fi strength, beyond using the internet for their functions (such as watching Netflix), which can cause slower speeds for other devices. However, TVs can impact your Wi-Fi signal if the router is placed near to your system.

This point applies to a range of metallic and electrical devices – Wi-Fi signals can struggle to pass through things like your TV. If your router is placed behind your television and you’re noticing connectivity issues, consider changing your router’s location. 

Baby Monitors

One of the most famous Wi-Fi disruptors is the humble baby monitor. Many of these monitors use frequencies that can be the same as Wi-Fi routers, which can cause some serious disruption for both your internet connection and the monitors themselves.

Thankfully, many steps have been taken in recent years, and now, the majority of baby monitors can operate at different frequencies. You can also use baby monitors that work over Wi-Fi, although this might take up some of your broadband.

Lights

Don’t worry, turning your living room light on won’t impact your Wi-Fi. The biggest culprit here is LED Christmas lights or anything similar. In this instance, the wires can generate a small amount of electromagnetic radiation which can cause interference.

The simple fix here is to keep lights away from the router and, if possible, out of the path between your main devices and the router.

multi-coloured  Christmas lights

Fridges

The problem with fridges is something of a combination between that caused by lights, microwaves and TVs. Both what the refrigerator is made of and how it operates can adversely impact your Wi-Fi signal.

Unfortunately, this is an issue that is hard to fix, as the fridge is a significant appliance in the home! The best option is to reposition your router to minimise its interference.

How to Improve Your Home Wi-Fi Signal

As mentioned in this article, if you don’t want to change the devices and routers you’re currently using, the best way to improve your signal is by optimally positioning your router. Ideally, you should place your router in a central location in a high place, such as on a bookshelf, and away from other electronics. For your essential devices, you can also look at creating a wired connection with an ethernet cable, to ensure there’s no interference.

If you live in a large property and your signal struggles to reach every room, consider a network booster. Our professional team can supply and install the perfect solution for your property, ensuring a great connection in every space!