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Plug and Play Entertainment Center

Wired for access
  [vote for,

After a serious encounter with my entertainment center about 10 minutes ago, I knew there must be another way. Attempting to disconnect my VCR, with tangles of wires behind my center and a heavy TV, it caused me to lose my temper and start pulling on random wires. Interestingly enough, the TV decided it was gonna go for a vacation but only managed to fall on my leg.

Screaming in pain gave me an idea. Shoot the TV. Wait, it was the second idea I had.

I imagined an entertainment center with one heavy duty plug. This plug redistributes electrical current to other outlets located behind VCR/DVD/stereo shelves. A coaxial connector, along with RCA connections are grouped together next to the electrical outlet.

A small box is attached to your VCR/DVD with plugs for all connections sticking out the end of it. Clamps would be a simple way to attach it to your device. Once attached and plugged up, all one needs to is insert the device in the bay. Everything matches up, and your device is automatically wired to the TV.

RCA and coaxial lines are routed out of the way behind the center, and gouped next to the TV. A switchbox is connected to switch between DVD/VCRs.

In other words, all you have to do is connect one single RCA/coaxial to your TV, a benefit when your TV only has one of both. More complicated versions would have reverse hookups for recording from one VCR to another, or DVD to VCR, extra RCA jacks in easily accessible for video cameras etc.

destructionism, Aug 16 2004


       I believe this is widely known to exist. There are literally hundreds of similar junction boxes on the market . . . Have you checked google?
contracts, Aug 16 2004

       I don't get it. All I have to do is connect one single RCA/coaxial to my TV, and everything works fine. But everything goes to a receiver first. I assure you there are no unnecessary cords, plugs, or jacks in use.
Also, what's the point of putting it by the outlet?
yabba do yabba dabba, Aug 16 2004

       [contracts]Well, it's basically a medley of things widely known to exsist. Although, I don't believe the plug and play connections between the devices and entertainment center is baked.   

       [yabba] The part you're confused on is the connection to the device and the center. It works the same as inserting a CD drive in your computer bay. One connection, and power supply and information is transferred through one plug. This would allow you to pull the device out, without having to unplug all the connections and having unsightly wires laying all over the place. You also don't have to worry about reaching behind the center to route lines, and figuring out which lines go to what device, etc.   

       It would be especially handy for those of us with satellite recievers, 2 VCRs, a DVD player, and a stereo all in one center.
destructionism, Aug 16 2004

       That would be nice, wouldn't it?   

       Do you need to move your 2 VCRs, your DVD player, and your stereo around often?
yabba do yabba dabba, Aug 16 2004

       [yabba] Sometimes I take my VCR to the computer to make videos, or a friend wants to borrow the DVD player, etc. So I suppose, yes.
destructionism, Aug 16 2004

       Fair enough. Can one cable take care of 5.1 DTS sound, S-video, RCA audio/video, power supply, etc? I don't know. If so, good idea, but it would also imply a new standard for the electronics industry.
yabba do yabba dabba, Aug 16 2004

       Well, not neccessarily just one cable. Whatever you deem your entertainment center needs I suppose it could be rigged up to your preferences. It won't be one cable, rather, a combination of several different jacks and connections on one face. Imagine one side with a power plug, coax, s-video, RCA jacks, etc. all sticking out of it. Before putting your device in, attach the face and hook up which connection you want. It would simply be a bundle of all these wires.
destructionism, Aug 16 2004

       This could work, but I don't agree on using RCA.   

       I do like the plug-and-play idea, and I think consumers that don't want to monkey with 5 different types of connectors would also like it. I think it would be possible to have EVERYTHING use a fiber-optic cable.   

       In this scenario, you would have a DTS-enabled reciever that would have 10 fiber-optic ports (instead of the plethora of audio/video ports you would normally have). You would take a fiber-optic cable and run it from your TV to your reciever - the two devices would handshake and figure out the the reciever should send streamed audio and video to the TV. Similarly, an enabled DVD player would know to send audio and video to the reciever.   

       If you put a DVD in the player, the reciever will be notified over the optic link, tell the TV to turn itself on, and start streaming video and audio.   

       This would be huge boon to the electronics industry, since you would have to purchase new components to fully use the new technology. I don't have a compelling argument as to how this setup is inherently superior to the current way (other than easy setup).   

       Final thought - I don't really think that we really need all the power grouped together. I do basically the same thing with a power strip with built in surge-protection.
sycorob24, Aug 16 2004

       //A coaxial connector, along with RCA connections are grouped together next to the electrical outlet.//
One problem with grouping the audio/video connections right next to the power, is you get signal interference. Never run power cables parallel to analog signal cables (perpendicular crosses are ok).

       You could work around this by very heavily shielding the power part of the cable, but it would probably make your interconnect cables prohibitively expensive.
krelnik, Aug 16 2004

       Wouldn't the idea limit where you could put your stuff?   

       Different connections are used so that units can be placed where the consumer wants them. Bind the connections together and you bind the devices together. go fish
Around TUIT, Aug 16 2004


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