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Streaming Media Devices

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Today, an alternative to cable and satellite TV is media streamers.  Before looking for the best streaming device, if your TV is a Smart TV with built-in access to streaming service, you’re set to migrate away from cable or satellite TV, but some streaming set-top boxes may work better or have more applications.  If you do not have a Smart TV, a streaming device that plugs into your TV is the solution.

streaming media devicesStyles

Streaming media devices come in two styles primarily–set-top or stick.  Set-top boxes are generally more powerful and robust.  Stick devices are a cheaper.

Broadband

The Federal Communications Commission defines high-speed broadband as minimum of 25 Mbps.  With all the dependencies on broadband today from video-conferencing to online file downloading and sharing (be it for work or play) to internet browsing, from multi-users, a lot of demand is placed on your home network which will affect the the proper functioning of your streaming media player.  Having enough speed in your broadband plays a key role.  Don’t forget your WiFi router also needs to support such speeds.  The last thing you want is your picture constantly buffering or glitchy.

Understand though, that sometimes the broadband provider is the problem, not your equipment, for example, a cable outage or glitch, which can happen even if your provider will not admit it is the source.  Generally, if all your broadband devices are having connection problems simultaneously, the proof is evident it is the provider.

4K HDR

The gold standard today is 4K HDR (high dynamic range), but make sure your TV has the capability to support 4K HDR as well, otherwise, it is a waste of money.

 

If you are looking for top streaming media devices to replace cable, visit topproductsfinder.com/product-category/streaming-media-devices/.  Roku vs. Chromecast?  Amazon Firestick vs. Roku?  Get exactly what you want based on meaningful, functional filters.  All products have been unbiasedly researched and recommended.  The only choice you need to make is where from the select reputable online retailers do you want to make the purchase.

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Replacement Windows

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Windows

Although the cost is not minor, replacing your windows to increase home value is one of the highest value-added remodeling projects for homeowners.  Not only will new windows modernize the appearance of a home, they can also save a lot on energy bills.  However, upgrading to energy efficient replacement windows just to save on energy bills is probably not worth it because of the long time to recoup your costs.  How much you spend will depend on the condition of your existing frames and windowsills.  Frame rot and condensation indicate it is time to replace your windows.

You will need to hire installers.  Look for installers certified by the manufacturer of your chosen window.  Do not let the contractor influence your window purchase decision for you.  Your choice of purchase should determine your contractor.

Styles

Double-hung and casement styles are most popular.  Double-hung styles are the typical windows where the top slides down and the bottom slides up to open.  Most double-hung brands will have a tilt-in sash feature where the windows can be tilted inwards for easy-cleaning of the exterior side.  Casement style windows are ones that typically crank open sideways.

Frame Materials

As for frame materials, vinyl and wood are better choices.  Wood is more expensive and requires upkeep, but looks better and can be pre-painted or stained at extra cost.

Glass

Most windows today are available with insulated glass and insulated coating to save energy.  This is done by applying a low emissivity transparent coating to double-pane windows.  Coatings applied to the external pane to reflect light and keep heat out.  Coatings applied to internal panes keep heat in.  A low-E coating factor means the window is more insulating.  Low-E glass also reduces ultraviolet (UV) light, preventing sun-fade damage to furniture, fabrics, and rugs.

As for the glass itself, double-glazed or triple-glazed windows have two or three panes, respectively, to provide more insulation and noise reduction.  The more panes, the more costly though.  If condensation occurs between the panes, the window is poorly constructed.  If safety is a concern, tempered glass crumbles when broken rather than shatter.  There is also double-strength glass which is thicker.

Besides the low-E coating factor, there are other ratings to consider as well.  The coating U-factor or U-value indicates the rate heat flows through the window.  The lower the factor, the better the insulation.

Solar Heat Gain

The direction of the solar heat gain coefficient (SHGC) is important depending on where you live.  A higher number indicates more solar heat passes through the window, so if you live in a cold environment, this helps reduce your heating costs.  Conversely, if you live in a hot environment, a lower SHGC is preferred to reduce cooling costs.

Noise Insulation

Finally, a window’s sound transmission class (STC) rating indicates noise reduction capability.  A higher number means better noise reduction.

 

If you are looking for the best replacement windows to buy for your home, visit topproductsfinder.com/product-category/replacement-windows/.  Get exactly what you want based on meaningful, functional filters.  All products have been unbiasedly researched and recommended.  The only choice you need to make is where from the select reputable online retailers do you want to make the purchase.

Check out other top rated products available on topproductsfinder.com.