Enjoy Outdoor Entertainment in SWFL with Landscape Speakers

With an average of 266 days of sun per year in SWFL, we like to bring the entertainment outside.  No matter how you plan to use your backyard, make sure not to forget the most important ingredient to any gathering: the music.

By incorporating landscape speakers into your outdoor entertainment system, you can amplify the fun in every corner of your backyard with the touch of a button.  No matter the size of your outdoor space, properly placed landscape speakers will let you enjoy high-quality sound in any part of your backyard.  From the patio to the hot tub, your music will follow you wherever you go, thanks to evenly distributed satellite speakers and subwoofers that cover your backyard with high-end audio.  Not only do landscape speakers produce crystal clear sound, but they are also designed to withstand the most extreme weather conditions and to perform at their best no matter the conditions outside.

Say goodbye to audio dropouts, muffled sound, and uneven volumes.

Hidden strategically throughout your garden beds and foliage, landscape speakers offer stunning sound while keeping eyes on the natural attraction of your backyard.  In addition to properly placed satellite speakers, every subwoofer is safely buried underground, exposing only the cap for a powerful, camouflaged bass.  Unlike dedicated patio speakers, landscape speakers cover every inch of your exterior environment with evenly distributed audio of your choice.

Patio speakers offer decent stereo sound, but that sound is limited only to your patio. Once you walk away to grab yourself a beverage or take a dip in the pool, that sound trails away.  Creating an evenly distributed soundscape in an uncontrolled environment can be difficult if you are unsure of where to best install your speakers and subwoofers.  In many cases, living on the water can even cause the audio to amplify as it travels above the water’s surface, which may result in frustrated neighbors who do not want to hear your music.  When we install your landscape speakers, we will create a sound field that points back to your house instead of out toward the water so that it does not reflect onto your waterfront and amplify into your neighbors’ yards.  Your music will stay within the confines that we set instead of getting lost outside the perimeter of your home.

Our team at Gamma Tech is ready to help you bump up the outdoor fun this season with a dynamic and reliable landscape speaker system that promises future enjoyment for the whole family.

The Importance of Organized A/V Cabling

 

While your A/V equipment rack may be hidden and out of sight, it is important to keep it clean and tidy as this will be your command center workstation.  The benefits of a properly dressed A/V rack go beyond just “looking good”.  It will help make your system operate great as well.  This is where the core of your system lives, and it is important to maintain.  Here are a few reasons to place importance on a well-managed and dressed rack.

-When your A/V rack is installed correctly and organized, the cables and connections will be easier to trace.  This will eliminate any confusion about which source leads to which output, while your tech is servicing or changing out any equipment or making any updates.  This will also help prevent any unnecessary stress due to overwhelming and unorganized cable management.

-An organized rack will also allow your equipment to breathe easier.  Avoiding messy cabling will let the fans do their job and help to keep your equipment cooler.  This will effectively make your equipment cool down and last longer.

-One of the most important reasons in having a well-dressed rack is to avoid electromagnetic interference.  It is very important that the power source is routed separately from your Category wires and audio and video cables.  Separating these cables will reduce interference in your system and allow it to run as smoothly as possible, which is critical, as your system is running 24/7.

Your A/V rack may not be the central focus and wow factor of your home but keeping it well maintained and wired correctly will ensure that your command center operates correctly to allow future enjoyment of your Audio/Video system.

At Gamma Tech, we will help you with your installation from concept through completion and offer ongoing support after your project has been installed.

 

Tech Talk Post COVID19

We have all witnessed the rapid changes during this pandemic and how we all go about our daily lives.  Instead of talking about toilet paper and hand sanitizer, let’s talk about the future of tech and changes we will begin to see due to the outbreak of COVID19.

You will start to notice even more of daily life taking place online as businesses and consumers frequent online banking, video conferencing, remote education, video calls, e-trade and more. People who have been avoiding online services will change their minds as the virus will show how crucial the web is during the lack of in-person interactions. Houses without the internet (yes, there are millions of these) will also give in and get service. And for those who are already tech savvy, their online habits will increase. I would expect that consumers will upgrade internet speeds and even consider backup plans, such as a Wi-Fi hotspot from a cellular carrier. Many people now trying to work from home are experiencing weaker speeds. The answer to this will be a faster plan and new wireless equipment.

Computers, printers and other IT gear will see a longer spike in interest. There was a scramble to buy laptops and monitors for home offices as the coronavirus hit. In some cases, these are must-have purchases for people stuck working from home. Many will want to prepare their home office for both future disruptions and for a future in which remote work is more common.

Demand will soar for telehealth services.  Virtual doctor visits and other forms of remote tracking can help alleviate hospitals, bringing more care to more people.  Biometric fingerprint readers will see a steep decline, since they rely on users making physical contact with a device or screen. That raises huge red flags when there’s an infectious disease that is transmitted on shared surfaces. Even routine deep cleaning won’t be able to convince many people to touch or press shared fingerprint readers.  This may lead to more contact-free facial detection. These are commonly used by law enforcement, border control and at airports.

The use of smartphones and location data will be critical. The country now has had to consider the tracking of people who test positive for COVID19.  Infectious disease experts say that this can speed the recovery and prevent future outbreaks. Google and Facebook are already in contact with the federal government to share anonymous location data, according to reports. Other tech companies, large and small, are looking to innovate with location-tracking technology use. Microsoft, Amazon, and Apple are among the leaders in facial recognition research.

Expect federal regulators to speed up the adoption of delivery drones. Drones can be a vital resource in a pandemic. China has experimented with using drones during coronavirus for shipping medicine, disinfecting public areas and delivering food which has helped to control the spread.  The focus with drones will first be on lifesaving uses, such as delivering medicine and virus test kits. More drones will be sold for surveillance and monitoring by police.  American drone companies will likely take priority over foreign makers for many government contracts, but this won’t be that easy. China based company DJI, controls a large majority of the market. American makers include Impossible Aerospace and Skydio. Also look for systems from Google’s Project Wing and Amazon’s Prime Air to come aboard soon.

As we all struggle with the impacts of this crisis it is encouraging to know that human creativity is a great source of remedies to our problems.

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Cord Cutting (Should you make this switch)

 It’s 2019 and cable is reminding you more and more of Sear’s and Toy’s R Us by not adapting to the times. “That’s it” you mutter to yourself. “I’m taking these cable boxes back and streaming everything!” … but wait, is it really that easy? can you get all of the content you had before? Are hallmark movies and Sunday Night Football still viable without a cable box? The answer is yes but it may not go as smooth as you’d hope. keep reading and gamma tech will break this down for you.
Table of Contents
1. Live TV Options
2. Streaming Options
3. Should you Switch?

 


Live TV Options
So you’re cutting the cord with the cable company but you still need your live TV. Don’t worry, there are actually many options available to you. It all depends on what you want to watch.
If basic local channels are all you need than a simple HD antenna may be a great fit for you. Plug that baby in, set it in a viable location and channels 1-20 are more than likely yours. Fox, ABC, CBS, and PBS are accessible for zero dollars a month. The problems with antennas are their poor and unreliable reception. Remember the old bunny ears you had to move every couple weeks to get a clear picture? These antenna’s are the same technology. Easy to install and easy to cause headaches.
Okay, so the chance of missing the last play of the Super Bowl scares you and you don’t want an antenna. There are other options available although we left the realm of no monthly charges. Live TV streaming services such as Hulu TV, YouTube TV, and Sling allow you to watch live TV over a stable internet connection. These services average about $35 per month. Still much cheaper than cable. The list of channels usually include your local channels and extended basic. Think of your 1-100 channels from standard cable. The faults are that you’re still missing out on your premiums likes HBO and Showtime and you’re losing your ability to channel surf. If tech isn’t your thing, streaming may not be as easy as you’d hope. All of these streaming options come in the form of apps. These apps can be downloaded on a smart TV or a smart device such as a Roku or apple tv.

 


Streaming Options
Live TV
Hulu
Hulu allows you to watch a wide variety of shows the day after they’ve aired. They have multiple levels of subscriptions including a commercial option for about $10 a month. (Ah commercials, didn’t think you’d entirely avoid those, right?) Hulu also provides a live TV option for $40 a month. If you’re a sports fan, Hulu is my choice for streaming due to its easy to use layout and included channels. (BIG TEN NETWORK, SEC NETWORK, ETC)
YouTube
Youtube is the classic online video source. A wide open database of user created videos. Recently Youtube has expanded to a different market, Live TV. similar to the others, Youtube offers a $40 paid subscription that allows you to watch live TV channels from a separate YouTube TV app.
Sling
Sling is another Streaming Platform that has made a pretty big name for itself due to its a-la-carte options. Sling starts at $25 a month for its “blue” or “orange” packages. Each with different channels. Users can add on “sports” or “entertainment” packages and see how it adds to their channel list and bill. Sling top package with all the bells and whistles maxes out at $60 per month.
DirectTV Now
A newcomer to the streaming circle. DirectTV now boasts the highest amount of channels available and starts at $45 per month. Like most streaming services, you have the ability to upgrade your package for additional channels. A bonus for HBO and Cinemax fans, due to their long lasting relationship, DirectTV’s add on price for these networks is only $5 a piece.
FuboTV
Fubo is a streaming service focused on sports especially soccer. While including some cable channels they certainly focus on sports giving you access to many soccer channels that other companies don’t provide.

 


The Rest
Netflix
Every time you see your nephew he raves about Netflix. so much so that you want to give it a try. Netflix has rapidly grown into a household name and a juggernaut of content. While Netflix doesn’t show live TV, it has a robust library of previously aired shows and box offices movies. Recently, Netflix has been producing their own suburb content as well. Netflix subscriptions include but are not limited to a base, one TV option for $12 per month and a ultra HD that allows for 4K and HDR streaming for $14 per month.
Vudu
Vudu is a popular app that specializes in movies. Blockbuster movies range from $5 to $10 to rent and $15 to $25 to purchase. Purchased movies are stored in Vudu’s system so you’re able to watch them from any platform. If you want to take advantage of your new 4k TV note that most are available in 4k and HDR. Vudu also has a selection of older movies for free that rotate throughout the year.
 
Hulu’s non live TV
Hulu started back in 2008 as a way to watch your favorite TV shows the day after they air without a cable subscription. Hulu’s basic plans still do just that. If you don’t need to watch live sports or shows then Hulu’s commercial plan at $10 per month would by far be the cheapest option for you.

Premium Networks
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New Problem, Game of Thrones is your favorite show and you can’t miss it. There are streaming solutions available for you as well. Mostly all of the premium networks provide their own streaming services. Download the respective app, sign up for there paid monthly membership and press play. These memberships can range in price and the price depends on the network and streaming service you go with. Some streaming services such as Sling and Hulu allow you to add these premium networks into their plan. This provides you with a more cohesive service and combines your bills from both.

Sports
NBA
NBA League Pass is a standalone product that once you subscribe and pay you’ll have access to all NBA games league wide.
 
NFL
Unfortunately, NFL does not have a stand alone plan so you’ll need one of the above streaming services to watch. The good news is that all live streaming options will allow you to watch football is some aspect!
 
MLB
Similar to NBA, MLB has their season long subscription dubbed MLB.TV.
SOCCER
Most streaming companies don’t allow for much soccer. If you’re a fan, FuboTV is the best way to go.
 
NHL
NHL is similar to NBA and MLB whereas you can pay a set amount and receive access to all NHL’s league wide during the season.

Should You Switch?
Are you a tech savvy and wallet savvy? Cutting the cord might be the right option. Do you care about ease of use and simplicity? A traditional cable box may be the best choice.
The answer can only be determined on a person by person basis. Let Gamma Tech help you figure it out.
Reach out to us here we look forward to serving you!

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QLED vs OLED and what high end TV is right for you? (Breaking down the two titans of TV’s)

If you’re in the market for a new TV there’s no doubt you’ve heard the terms OLED and QLED. 94% of American homes have an HD TV but is “keeping up with the Jones’s” worth it?  whats the difference between the two? and which one is right for you?
Let Gamma Tech Services be your AV experts and provide insights into the two top of the line models.

TABLE OF CONTENTS 
1. Definitions
2. QLED vs OLED
3. Which TV is better and which is right for you?

 DEFINITIONS
Lets start with the basics and define both terms.
QLED
QLED is an acronym for Quantum Dot Light Emitting Diode. The term LED has been around for awhile now. The important part is the Q. Quantum Dots offer a different way for LED screens to produce color. Traditional LED’s use white diodes with color filters. QLED’s diodes range in super small (quantum) sizes and produce different colors based on their size. The takeaway is QLED’s can produce more heavily saturated and more precise colors compared to traditional LED’s. QLED’s are exclusively produced by Samsung.
OLED
OLED is an acronym for Organic Light Emitting Diode. What this means is OLED’s (unlike other led’s) do not require back lighting. This allows each individual diode to light up or turn off separately. On your current TV, look at a dark scene. Notice how the black color actually looks dark gray? That’s because the diodes are still producing light or light is bleeding from an adjacent lit area. With OLED’s you experience pure blacks and extreme contrast because specific diodes are turned off thus producing no light.

QLED vs OLED 
 
The battle of the top TV tech. Both are top of the line technologies and both will likely take a chunk from your wallet but which one is best? There’s no simple answer, so let’s go through the pros and cons in comparison to each other.
QLED
 Pros: 
1. Even the base model QLED’S can become extremely bright if needed. Have a ton of natural light in your room? This may be the better option.
2. Low input lag. Gamer’s rejoice, these QLED’s have an excellent input lag time. The 2018 version has recorded lag-time of just 15.4ms. No excuse to lose a match on this TV.
3. 10 year no burn in guarantee. These QLED’s are not susceptible to burn-in like other TV’s. Great for not retaining that ESPN or CNN logo.
4. QLED’s produce incredibly bright, vibrant and diverse colors.
5. Price. Generally you can find a QLED somewhat cheaper than an OLED.
Cons:
1. QLED’s still require back lighting. Meaning light is emitted in sections as apposed to OLED’s lighting individual diodes. This means blacks won’t be as pure and contrast not as great in comparison.
2. QLED is more of a refinement of technology than the next-gem product Samsung is claiming it to be.
  
OLED
 Pros: 
1. Light is emitted on a pixel-by-pixel basis, so complete black can be right next to bright white with neither impacting each other. This gives you deep blacks and amazing contrast.
2. No light bleeding because there’s no back light. Each diode can operate individually without effect the others because they light up themselves. 
3. OLED’s tend to be lighter and slimmer than a typical LED panel.
4. Significantly wider viewing angles. Great for bigger spaces. don’t worry about sitting directly in front of these TV’s.
Cons: 
1. Very expensive to produce. While the prices continue to lower, OLED panels don’t come cheap.
2. Brightness isn’t great. Comparative to QLED’s, a lot of natural light will affect your enjoyment of these TV’s.
3. Input lag and burn in. While both of these key points for gamer’s are worse in comparison to QLED’s, they continue to improve with every model release. Neither should be a deciding factor as burn in should only occur in extreme circumstances and input lag has been lowered significantly in the recent years.

Which TV is better and which TV is right for you?
While the OLED’s picture slightly edges out the QLED’s, the benefits of QLED’s make this race too close to call. Both TV’s are top of the line and both TV’s will be a beautiful addition to your project.
A lot of the when and which concerning purchasing a TV is dependent on your environment, your project, and your personal preference.

Reach out to us here and allow us to walk you through the process and help pick the right TV for your space.
Additionally, if you’d like to keep doing research, check out Samsung’s QLED website here and our favorite OLED here .
Building the ultimate setup? Check out our home theater services for residential and commercial .
Not satisfied with either? Check out the newest technology hitting the market. the 8k TV.
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Ride Nature

At Gamma Tech we are grateful for so many things. We are blessed with a great team, great customers, and a great opportunity to serve Southwest Florida in so many capacities. We are always excited to be able to come along and support different business and organizations that are making an impact on the community around us as well as beyond the borders of this country.

One of the many organizations we’ve been able to work with this year is Ride Nature out of Fort Myers. Ride Nature is an Action Sports Mission Organization dedicated to giving generously, proclaiming the Gospel of Jesus Christ, and making disciples to the ends of the Earth. Their team travels into poverty stricken areas, both local and globally, to reach out to children through the use of action sports, to draw them away from gangs and terrible situations and point them to the Hope in Christ Jesus.

They also host many events at their Fort Myers location including concerts, cook outs, community outreach as well as a coffee shop.
We are so encouraged by the work they are doing and are grateful for the opportunity to support this great organization. We encourage you to take a moment and check them out, especially during the holiday season or if you’re looking to make end-of-the-year contributions to a great cause.

www.ridenature.com
https://www.facebook.com/thehouseofridenature

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How Much Storage Should I Have For My NVR?

A Network Video Recorder (or NVR) is a device that records video in a digital format to a disk drive, USB flash drive, SD memory card or other storage device. This NVR is connected to your security cameras installed in your home or business so you can store the footage and remote viewing on devices. This sends the recorded information from the camera directly to the NVR via ethernet cable.

The number of cameras an NVR can handle is defined by the number of channels (cameras) it has. This can range from 4 channels to 16 channels and up.

Things you need to know:
What the camera’s resolution is
Video quality
Frame rate per camera
Daily recording hours
Number of days you will be recording
Number of cameras you have

Once you have this information, you will know what size recorder you will be required to use to store the footage.

When you are looking to have an NVR installed in your home or business, give us a call! We do everything so you don’t have to! Gamma Tech sells top of the line electronics all across the board so you can be sure that you are getting the highest quality for the price!

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Cat5 vs Cat5e vs Cat6: Which Do I Run In My Home?

You may not even know what Cat wire is. Cat wire, or “category wire” is a twisted pair cable that carries signals. You use this in your own home to connect computer to a network for example. The difference between Cat5, Cat6, and Cat6e is the bandwidth they offer. Cat5 has become almost obsolete due to the other Cat wires being faster and more efficient.

Category 5 is the slowest out of the bunch, offering the slower speed of 10/100Mbps at 100MHz. Length of this cable cannot exceed 100m to reach this speed.

Category 5e (the e means enhanced) has basically replaced Cat5 wire in new installations. It is designed to reduce crosstalk and other signal interruptions, and can handle 1000Mbps at 100MHz. If you want to compromise on price yet still receive a great speed/signal, this may be the best option.

Category 6 has been commonly used in networks, while being able to handle 10 Gigabits of data, at 250 MHz. Cat6 wire is also more expensive to use, and can at times be difficult to install. If you are running cat wire through the walls, this may be the best option for you.
The “crosstalk” or interference has gone down due to the wiring updates. This reduces signal interruption and maximizes speed. You want to future proof your home and not go backwards with technology. When you are ready to install wire in your home, make sure to call Gamma Tech! Our AV wiring team knows everything there is to know about Cat wire. We are ready to serve you!

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Ransomeware: What It Is And How You Can Be Protected

 

A recent cyber attack has surfaced a malware called “Ransomeware,” which can completely lock your files on your computer and requires you to pay a certain fee to attain the files that have been compromised. It has been said that this attack occurred through stealing certain tools from the NSA. At the end of the day, these hackers are really holding your files for ransom.

 

These hackers can get into your machine via a variety of methods including SPAM emails, direct hacking, infected websites, or other computers that are infected on your network. This is spread easily by hacking into other computers on a network making it and endless cycle. Also, using outdated software can make you an easy target. Sadly, these hackers are advanced and major companies such as FedEx have even taken a hit from this malware.

 

What steps you need to take to protect you and your devices:

 

The first step you should take, is make backups of all your files. Whatever is important to you on your computer, back it up! So for example, if you have a backup of all your files on your computer and you become a victim of this malware, you can take the machine and wipe it clean and start fresh. Having the backup will simply load your backed up files back on your computer getting rid of the ransomware.

 

Another great asset to have is antivirus software. This software helps to eliminate all virus threats, using helpful tools like pop-up blockers and avoiding suspicious attachments.

 

The good news is, Gamma Tech can help! We do both backups and antivirus protection! If you are a commercial customer who participates in our managed services Gamma Tech Antivirus is included along with our ransomware proof backup. So if any problems are to occur, we can assure that our expert IT technicians will be there to help!  If you’re a residential customer, give us a call so we can ensure your machine is protected from crooks attempting to hold your files ransom.

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Music Streaming Services Compared

Apple Music

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What We Like
If you have iPhone or iPad you don’t have to download another app, it’s already built in. You can access it through your Music app on Apple devices. When you sign up, you get the first 3 months free. There is a “For You” tab that learns about your taste in music and shows you music recommendations.

What We Don’t Like
The sound quality isn’t nearly as high as its competitors. There is no free mode with Apple Music, and is very cluttered; not easy to navigate. If you are an Android user or ever plan to in the future, the Apple Music platform is not the most friendly one to use.

Cost: $9.99/mo

Spotify

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What We Like
You can connect your Spotify account to Facebook and see what your friends are listening to. Spotify also has great high quality audio.

What We Don’t Like
This is actually our favorite streaming service to use at Gamma Tech. The sound quality is still not “high definition”, but it is still very good and better than most. Some big name artists have removed their music from Spotify due to their royalty rates.

Cost: $9.99/mo

Pandora

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What We Like
Pandora uses stations. You can create a station around an artist, song, or genre. It won’t play songs solely from a certain band, but play music that was in the same genre or similar artists.

What We Don’t Like
Has a very limited selection of music compared to its competitors. It is very basic. Also due to licensing restrictions, only 1 track per album can be played at a time. So listening to the Star Wars soundtrack all the way through won’t ever happen.

Cost: $4.99/mo or free with ads

Tidal

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What We Like
It offers a lot of exclusive content only available on Tidal such as concerts, videos, and playlists by big name artists. Gets a lot of attention because of its high sound quality.

What We Don’t Like
Not too many people use this service. Sure it has the best sound, but Spotify is just as great for half the cost.

Cost: $9.99/mo for Basic or $19.99 for hi-fidelity

iHeart Radio
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What We Like
If you want your favorite radio stations you listen to now mixed in with some stations you create yourself, this is the one for you. What we like is that ITS FREE! Free is good! Its very simple and easy to use.

What We Don’t Like
The variety isn’t as vast as its competitors. Being solely radio based and not being able to pick an artist to stick with may bother some users.

Cost: $9.99/mo or free with ads

Slacker Radio

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What We Like
Has a vast library of music, great stations, and playlists. The program itself is very sleek, and has great sound quality. If you love sports radio, you’ll love this service even more with live ESPN Radio. Also has news stations and even The Weather Channel.

What We Don’t Like
Very similar to the Pandora and Spotify, certain features are only available through the premium membership.

Cost: $3.99/mo or free with ads

Tune In Radio

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What We Like
There are endless possibilities with Tune In. You can listen to practically anything you wish. What we love about TuneIn is that it is accessible just about anywhere. Apple, Android, a Smart TV, you name it, you can probably stream Tune In. You can connect Tune In to your Facebook just like Spotify. There is a History tab that will show you a stations entire playlist before you even start listening.

What We Don’t Like
There is a buffer. Constantly waiting for music to load can be very annoying. Some stations won’t even load. Not all local stations will appear like iHeart Radio, and you need a very good internet connection. Lastly, there are ads that come up at the bottom of the screen as if they want you to click on their bait.

Cost: $9.99/mo or free with ads

 

It all comes down to what your preferences are and what you are comfortable with. Pick the best streaming service for you this summer!