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Old 03-01-2009, 06:12 AM   #1
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My '05 has the original Sharp Aquos 32" LCD, Kenwood DVD unit, and the LG Direct TV unit as provided by WRV. I have fought with this system since I purchased the coach and I find it to be overly complex, poorly wired, etc.etc. I have even had several "experts" look at it to get it operating, and spent way too much $$ trying to make it happen. Several of my Alpine friends have had much more success in helping me with improvements, but I still think the system ought to be junked and be started over from scratch. Any recommendations on good installation people in Southern California? Any recommendations on equipment that will fit in existing spaces, especially the flat screen TV, without cabinet modifications? I just need a simple system that works on demand, occasionaly watch a DVD.
Thanks for listening.
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Old 03-01-2009, 07:00 AM   #2
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When I had my cabinets rebuilt for a 32" Sharp LCD, the guy found so much excess wire up there that we brought in a "Specialist" to redo the wiring. That was the best $$ spent in the project. Until I replaced the Kenwood last month with a Panasonic SC-PT660. Terrific sound from a low price system (Wal-Mart $250). Been using the DirectTV box and about to do away with the VCR - may get a Blu-Ray if the prices come down.
There's nothing wrong with the Sharp TV, don't know anything about the LG DirectTV unit though.
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Old 03-01-2009, 07:02 AM   #3
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Another thought - good move is to get a Logitech Harmony all-in-one remote. I've got the 770.
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Old 03-01-2009, 07:32 AM   #4
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That's really unfortunate because, if the Aquos is still in good working condition, it's a pretty high quality LCD and I don't think much has changed that will make operation of a replacement system that much simpler, but maybe.

There has been improvement with simpler, higher quality connections (less cabling) with HDMI connections, but much of the Alpine's AV complexity stems from the integration of Sat, sound systems and the Winegard coaxial switch.

To proceed with a TV replacement, I would first determine the Aquos model or review the manual to determine physical dimensions and whether mount points conform to VESA standards.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/F...y_Mounting_Interface

Matching the current VESA mount to the new TV may solve the mounting problem, but watch out for a matching VESA mount pattern that's positioned differently on a new TV. Might be wise to stick with a new Sharp. This assumes WRV used VESA mounts, if they're on the Aquos.

You should be able to search the internet for matching or <= physical dimensions for a new TV.

I recall the 05 DVD player is also the sound system, directly driving the coach speaker system (older models like my 04 had a separate DHSS system). Adding another device and its remote control made things more complicated.

To retain the coach speaker system (for sound quality), it may be possible to find a TV that fits and has its own built in 5 channel sound system that directly wires to your coach speakers and eliminates the DVD/sound system, like this one:
http://www.jr.com/sony/pe/SON_KDL32N4000/

This would reduce your DVD player to just a player, simplifying things.

It would really help an AV tech to review the Winegard cabling diagram. Most techs haven't encountered this kind of coaxial complexity, but a good tech should be able to "get it" upon review of the diagram. This is needed to ensure they make the proper connections to preserve things like: coaxial TV connection to campground cable, routing of the Winegard modulated composite DVD output thru the coaxial BR TV connection (enables DVD viewing on the BR TV).

The all-in-one remotes are getting better and could be another solution,

Hope this helps, if nothing else, print it out for the tech...
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Old 03-01-2009, 08:11 AM   #5
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Rick - I also have an '05, but '38 FDTS. I have pulled out LOTS of excess cable as well as rewiring it and adding an RF wireless remote extension so I can keep the cabinet doors closed while watching TV. The Sharp Aquos is a good TV.

About a 6 months after I bought the coach the sounds system/DVD player died, WRV replaced it with a Zenith.

I was using Dish Network (too much changing between the 101 and 119 satellites), so we have just changed to DirecTV, their new standard satellite receiver box is much smaller, one drawback, DirecTV has moved the HD programming to the Ka band (they were Ku) and according to King Dome they do not receive Ka so we now only get the non HD channels. That does not really bother me because most channels/programming is not yet HD, although I hope King Dome will put out a mod soon, then maybe after the rest of the channels convert, we will move back to HD.

The other thing I did was move the cable input directly to the TV, not the Satellite receiver, again making operation simple.

I have added a Sony Bluray player in the cabinet on the passenger side (the Sharp has plenty of inputs to choose from). One added feature is most Bluray players up convert a standard DVD to almost Bluray quality (1080i).

I agree with David's comments about the Harmony remote, it takes all 4 controls off the table and leaves you with one "clicker" that makes operating all the components easy, one button turns everything on or off! I have a Logitech Harmony 890, Best Buy recently had them on sale for only a few dollars more than the Harmony One.

The components WRV used were pretty good, the installation, execution was just a bit sloppy.
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Old 03-01-2009, 09:04 AM   #6
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I want to seccond David's comment about the universal remote. In addition to replacing 4 or 5 remotes, they also give you the power of macros. These will help you switch the inputs on the different components to make it easy for a novice to switch the TV input, the sound system input, etc. to make it easy to select watching a DVD or a satellite broadcast.

I have an older Universal Remote MX-500. I have two at home and one in the coach. Everything works the same at home or on the road! They cost about $100 if you can still find them. It isn't computer programmable (well mine is since I bought a special program for programming it) like the Harmony.
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Old 03-01-2009, 11:02 AM   #7
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I swapped emails w/Kingdome a coupla weeks ago. They have no plans for Ka-HD upgrades for any domed product to receive Dtv-HD.

When my Dtv subscription is up, we are considering MotoSat & maybe Canadian programming since their stuff is available in Mexico w/no hassle.
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Old 03-02-2009, 07:07 AM   #8
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All are good suggestions. To give you some idea of my frustration, I had to replace the LG high-def satellite receiver about a year ago. The "tech" said the Sharp TV (a two-piece unit with monitor and separate control unit) had limited number of inputs that were not compatible with newer Direct TV boxes. The LG unit was no longer made, so I had to find a used one on ebay. During installation of that we must have removed a mile of excess cable. Had huge problems and issues during installation (read $$). I do have a universal remote, but every time you mess with the system you are back to 3 controls. The other night I tried to play a DVD I could not get a picture, so I gave up and went back to watch TV. NO GO! I'm guessing the LG unit is history again.
The Sharp Aquos has a wonderful picture, but it has a faint vertical line in the middle of the screen that I haven't been able to get rid of, in spite of numerous inqires to Sharp. The only part of the system that seems to be problem free is the Kenwood unit. Even the AV techs have been unable to completely unravel the problems with this complex system, and that's why I think replacing it completely may be the only answer... of course I rather not spend the money, but... The bedroom TV is a treat- you click on and off, and you can stuff a DVD in the slot to watch one. Now that's my kind of TV!
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Old 03-02-2009, 01:45 PM   #9
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Hi Rick,

I have felt your pain over the WRV entertainment design. I could never get anything to work correctly without many button pushing on several modules. I finally went to RV Specialists here in San Diego to have the system analyzed by one of their A/V consultants who opined that the system designer must have been a techie-geek and expected everyone else to understand the system as well as he did.

I had the entire control system ripped out and replaced with a simple control box. Every thing now works with only two remotes (one for the Kenwood and one for the RCA receiver). I get DirectTV, DVDs and CDs formats played very easily.

I would recommend you have the same analysis done instead of spending your remining years trying to figure out WRV's system. You would have to make up a book of settings for each component!

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Old 03-03-2009, 04:59 AM   #10
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From a post I made in October 2007:

==============================================
I had an in-motion Trac King installed by the factory about 2 years ago (BTW, excellent installation job with a matching wall inside a cabinet, for the sat display).

It has performed well and seems always to get Sat signals.

However, I use Dishnet, which required a manual selection of different sats, followed by a tedious 2+ minute sat receiver reset.

I understand this issue caused DirectTV and perhaps other sat makes to be favored choices.

I recently contacted them (BTW, great customer service) to inquire about loading coordinates for the 129 sat (had 110/119/61.5/148, but no 129, emerging as their HD sat).

Kingdome, under their 2 year warranty, sent me a newly available upgraded tuner and a "sat software upload box", which I just installed and used to update my sat SW.

The result is my sat receiver is "aware" of 119,110 and 129(hd) sats on "boot-up"
and when I select a channel that requires a different sat than the one currently locked, the Trac King acquires the next sat with ~5 second delay.

It works great!
=============================================

It's been about a 1.5 years and this solution continues to work very well, but because the Sat receiver sits un-powered, every few months I have to call Dishnet to "ping" my receiver to un-lock my subscription channels. It appears to be a security measure. They recently issued new "smart cards", which might affect this.
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Old 03-03-2009, 05:23 AM   #11
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Quote:
The "tech" said the Sharp TV (a two-piece unit with monitor and separate control unit)
I didn't know that about the LCD TVs, 05 and later. On my 04, the plasma is actually a monitor (no NTSC analog tuner or built in speakers). WRV did this to provide larger screen size with a smaller physical TV dimension.

This adds another challenge to find a new TV that fits well.

Good news is that newer models seem to have very compact speaker systems with minimal additional physical dimension beyond the screen size and I've seen plenty with "bottom fired" speakers as opposed to "side fired", which increases the horizontal dimension.

And, newer models will include digital ATSC tuners, needed to tune channels as NTSC expires.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/NTSC

But, if only a monitor will fit well, you can use the NTSC tuner from the Sat receiver (Dishnet has one, Direct ??).

I would expect to find LCD TVs that fit horizontally and are a little bigger on the vertical dimension.
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Old 03-03-2009, 07:02 AM   #12
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Jim- I've had the same problem with DirecTV in that if I haven't used the system for a while I have to call them to fire it up again...crazy.

I did some checking on TV's yesterday and the 32" Sony Bravia seems to fit the bill, albeit expensive. The width will work, and as you said, the vertical dimension is about an inch or two taller because of the bottom speakers, which have been deleted from the existing Sharp unit. I don't think the bottom speakers will impair my front view at all. The all-in-one Sharp TV's are at least an inch or two too wide, and I'd like to avoid cabinet mods. The kicker will be whether or not I can use the existing bracket or perhaps modify it. I would assume (ha ha) that the newer DirecTV receivers are compatible with the Sony, and I'll look into whether or not I can salvage the Kenwood. Maybe it would be smarter at this point to switch to a Sony home theater unit to keep the equipment in the same family. I'm guessing I can plug the sound from the Bravia to run through the Kenwood home theater, and maybe even use the Bravia's built-in bottom speakers in addition?? Lots to check on before pulling out my wallet.
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Old 03-03-2009, 10:25 AM   #13
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I have just finished installing a 32" Sony Bravia LCD in my coach and I think I remember the opening is 31 1/2" wide and 23 " high opening. The Sony was a little pricy but a great picture. I have a new Direct TV DVR Receiver with a Sony 3 Speaker surround system. I am happy with the results.
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Old 03-03-2009, 12:16 PM   #14
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Rick,
I'm thinking you should be able to make the existing mount work or modify it. Ya might want to look behind the Sharp to get an idea of how it mounts and whether it --at least-- looks similar, before taking the plunge.

Should be no problem making the newer DTV Recvr work; actually I'd expect the cabling to be HDMI,much simpler.

One simplicity feature with the Sony sound system is the liklihood that its remote will also control the new Sony TV.

In order for the new Bravia to run audio thru the existing Kenwood, the Bravia must have audio out (likely). If it does, the Bravia may switch between internal speakers and external audio, one working at a time, just have to check.

The Kenwood can probably take an audio in from the Sat Rvcr too, that may be how it's cabled now.

The Bravia extending lower shouldn't impair visibility much, but might get in the way when boarding. My 04 has a foam pad corner and it has saved me pain, I'm sure.

Sounds like you're on the right track!
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