Couch Potato on Crack: 100 Ways to Juice Up Your TV

By Heather Johnson

The days of 3 channels on rabbit ears are long gone. There is so much technology available for television, there’s virtually no excuse for not being able to watch exactly what you want, exactly how you want to at any given time. In this article, we’ll show you some of the tools, solutions, and more that will take you way beyond regular TV.


Take things a step further than your standard TV and cable setup with TV-capable game consoles, set-top boxes, home media routers, and more.

  1. Apple TV: With an Apple TV console, you’ll be able to rent movies, buy TV shows, browse your photos, and more.
  2. D-Link Wireless Media Player: Using this piece of hardware, you can stream content from your PC to TV via an 802.11g connection.
  3. Wii: Take advantage of the Wii’s Opera browser to access Internet programming.
  4. XBox 360: Although not offered currently, the XBox will eventually have IPTV functionality, so you can turn your gaming console into a TV solution.
  5. Slingbox: With the Slingbox, you’ll be able to use an Ethernet connection to view streamed content on your TV.
  6. DVR Anywhere: Although not currently released, this solution from Microsoft will allow one hard drive to serve multiple set-top boxes with different shows and recordings.
  7. MediaFlex Adapter: This adapter makes Wi-Fi connection to your ethernet-equipped TV possible.
  8. Playstation3: With Playstation3’s PlayTV, you’ll soon be able to use the device as a personal video recorder from your TV, and even watch from your PSP using an internet connection.
  9. SlingCatcher: Very much like the SlingBox, the SlingCatcher takes things one step further with wireless capbility, a hard drive, and the option to view your PC’s screen on your TV.
  10. D-Link PC-on-TV Media Player: Another great TV innovation from D-Link, this media player comes with a remote that can be used to control media on your PC remotely.
  11. Harmony Remote: Harmony’s advanced universal remotes offer multi-device control, wireless connectivity, and much, much more.
  12. Tribbox: This open source set top box can be connected to your computer via ethernet.
  13. HK Flix: Check out these souped up DVD players that allow out-of-region discs, USB access, and lots more.
  14. TV capture card: With a TV capture card, you can easily view and capture TV on your PC.
  15. Microsoft Windows Home Server: With this storage device, you can store and connect your media in one device.
  16. Broadband Entertainment Center: This entertainment gateway makes it easy to network your TV and PC for media.
  17. D-Link DivX Connected HD Media Player: With this media player, you can watch DivX videos right on your TV.
  18. Vudu: This set-top box gives you access to thousands of movies, TV, and HD content without using your computer.


Take advantage of these programs and solutions that create media centers, streaming video, and lots more.

  1. VideoLAN: The VLC media player can be used as a streaming server.
  2. VH Screen Capture Driver: For the poor man’s PC-to-TV streaming, use this driver that acts like a webcam for your screen contents.
  3. AnyTV: Use this TV player to watch nearly any channel on your PC without a TV tuner card or satellite receiver.
  4. BeyondTV: Use BeyondTV to skip commercials, burn DVDs, search for your favorite actors, and more.
  5. MythTV: Use MythTV to turn your old PC into a media box that allows souped-up recording, DVR capabilities, multiple servers, a custom TV guide and so much more.
  6. Orb: With this software, you can stream video files, photos, music and more.
  7. SaveTV: Get season recordings, online video, and more using SageTV.
  8. ComSkip: Strip your shows of commercials with ComSkip.
  9. Muxi: This recorder is great for HTDV, offering smooth high frame rates and more.
  10. KatchTV: This Internet TV application is made for KDE, and allows you to subscribe to TV channels with podcasts.
  11. Miro: With Miro, you can play video files, watch lots of different channels, download BitTorrents, and save YouTube videos.


Whether they are integrated services or places to buy video content, these resources are sure to please any entertainment junkie.

  1. Aquos Net: On Sharp’s Aquos Net, you’ll be able to access widgets like web content and stock quotes directly from your TV via ethernet.
  2. Hulu: This venture from NBC and News Corp serves up some of the best shows from NBC and Fox, which can be embedded on your own site or through email.
  3. ICTV: This service offers loads of interactive TV.
  4. Jaman: This online distribution company’s movies can be found on TiVos, Apple TV, Macs, and PCs.
  5. Openhulu: If you’re tired of waiting for your Hulu invite, check out this site to get around the closed beta.
  6. iTunes: Download movies, TV, shows, and lots more with Apple’s iTunes.
  7. Netflix: Watch movies instantly on your PC with a Netflix subscription.
  8. XBox Live: XBox Live isn’t just for gaming, you can get movies and TV with it, too.
  9. TiVo RSS: You can set up “Season Pass” recordings from the web with RSS on the TiVo.
  10. Stumble.TV: This service for the Wii serves up several channels of online content from StumbleUpon.
  11. TVTonic: On TVTonic, you can subscribe to hundreds of Internet TV channels.
  12. Amazon Unbox: With Amazon’s download service, you can get videos for your TiVo and more.
  13. Babelgum: Get peer-to-peer TV with this service from Babel Networks.
  14. Jalipo: This British service streams live content from BBC World, Revs TV and more.
  15. Tape It Off The Internet: This site aggregates online TV, offering streaming video, BitTorrent downloads, and ways to purchase content.
  16. YouTube: YouTube is available on your TV through a variety of services, like the Wii or Apple TV.
  17. Veoh: On Veoh, you’ll find content from both studios and peer users.
  18. Dailymotion: Find videos, channels, and more on Dailymotion.
  19. Google Video: Stay on top of movers and shakers, and find some of the most popular videos available on Google Video.
  20. WiiTube: This service is YouTube for the Wii, with videos specifically designed to be played on the Wii Internet Channel.
  21. Yahoo! Video: Yahoo! Video offers featured videos and a number of different channels.
  22. Panasonic’s services: With Panasonic’s Internet-connected VIERA PZ850 series Plasma HDTVs, you’ll be able to watch YouTube videos and look at your Picasa albums on your TV.
  23. Joost: Joost is full of fun programming that you can watch directly on your PC.
  24. Zattoo: With Zattoo, you can get live sports, sitcoms, and other TV.


Watch and manage TV wherever you go with these cool tools.

  1. ON Network: On this network, you’ll find downloads for high-definition TV series that can be viewed on your iPhone or iPod.
  2. DS TV: Use this antenna and converter to get TV on your Nintendo DS.
  3. TiVo Mobile: Use TiVo Mobile to schedule recordings, check your listings, find programs, and more, all from your cell phone.
  4. MobiTV: With MobiTV, you can get TV on your mobile phone.
  5. thinIPTV: Thin Media’s thinIPTV allows on-demand mobile content.
  6. uTorrent mUI: This mobileUI offers plain-text uTorrent functionality for mobile devices.
  7. DirecTV Mobile DVR Scheduling: On select DirecTV DVRs and handsets, you can schedule downloads with your cell phone.
  8. SlingPlayer Mobile: Watch TV content from your Slingbox on your advanced mobile device using this software.
  9. ReplayTV PersonalHD: Using this solution, you can record HDTV on your PC and play it back on your iPod.
  10. YouTube Mobile: Anyone with a 3G device can access nearly all of YouTube’s library through YouTube Mobile.


These channels offer online access to some of your favorite TV programming.

  1. ABC: Check out ABC’s online presence to catch full episodes of your favorite shows, including Lost and Desperate Housewives.
  2. CBS: CBS offers full episodes of popular shows like CSI and Survivor.
  3. Food Network: Tune into the Food Network to learn how to make delicious food at home.
  4. MTV: On MTV Overdrive, you’ll get access to music videos and more.
  5. NBC: NBC offers full episodes of some of their most popular shows.
  6. Adult Swim: Check out Adult Swim’s lineup for humorous cartoons.
  7. Brilliant But Cancelled: Don’t mourn the loss of your favorite TV show-just check it out online with this channel.
  8. G4TV: Stay on top of the latest in geek news with G4’s online content.
  9. C-SPAN: You can watch C-SPAN live online or just catch up on on video.
  10. The Associated Press: Catch up on the latest news with this channel.
  11. BET: BET’s On Blast gives you access to loads of music videos and programming.
  12. CMT Loaded: Here you’ll find music videos, shows, and more from Country Music Television.
  13. CW: CW’s site has full episodes of popular shows as well as free previews.
  14. FOX: Fox On Demand will give you access to great shows like Prison Break, Family Guy, and Bones.
  15. PBS: You’ll get loads of PBS programming with registration.
  16. SciFi: On SciFi’s The Pulse, you can watch full episodes and free clips.


Use these download solutions to get TV, movies, and more on your hard drive.

  1. BitTorrent: BitTorrent is home to lots of TV shows, with channels for Fox, G4, and a lot more.
  2. uTorrent: For a light, customizable bit torrent client, check out uTorrent.
  3. Azureus: Azureus offers both simple and advanced torrent downloads.
  4. Vuze: Made by Azureus, Vuze has high resolution videos for popular entertainment.
  5. TorrentFlux: With this web torrent client, you can download RSS torrents and more.
  6. PenguinTV: Use this RSS reader to download and view podcasts and video blogs.


Stay on top of it all with these services.

  1. Maxemum TV-Guide: This TV guide for KDE makes it easy to find and track your favorite shows.
  2. Zap2it: You can link this TV guide service to your Tivo, MythTV, and more.
  3. OnTV: Monitor TV programs with search capabilities, program reminders, and more using OnTV.
  4. TV Guide Wireless: Find out what’s on from your web-enabled mobile device with TV Guide’s wireless capability.
  5. gShow TV: With this graphical user interface, you’ll be able to view program schedules and put a pretty face on your PVR solution.


Get step by step instructions for upgrading your TV experience with these tutorials.

  1. Remote Control Your BitTorrent Downloads with Clutch: This tutorial from Lifehacker runs down the steps you’ll need to take to download shows from BitTorrent even when you’re not at your computer.
  2. How to View HD Without an HDTV: NewTeeVee runs down what you’ll need to do to get HD content without an HDTV.
  3. How to: Stream Contents of a PC Window to the Wii Opera: Check out this tutorial to learn how to stream video from your PC to your TV-connected Wii.
  4. Remote Control Your Torrents With uTorrent’s WebUI: If you prefer uTorrent, check out this tutorial for controlling uTorrent from afar.
  5. How to Turn Your Old Computer into the Ultimate Media Center: Follow this guide to learn how to take an old computer and make it into a superpowered media center.
  6. Six Steps To Get More HD From Your Scientific Atlanta Set-top Box: Follow these steps to squeeze out more HD from your box issued by Time Warner or Comcast.
  7. Build Your Own DVR with SageTV: This tutorial from Lifehacker will teach you how to create your own DVR.
  8. Hacking the Apple TV: Get apps like Joost, Firefox, World of Warcraft and more on your Apple TV with this hack.
  9. Streaming TV With Skype:
  10. TiVo’s 30 Second Skip Easter Egg: Check out this tutorial to learn how you can skip commercials with TiVo.

One Response to “Couch Potato on Crack: 100 Ways to Juice Up Your TV”

  1. Great post with a ton of great ideas - Thanks!

Leave a Reply

XHTML: You can use these tags: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>