RIDING ROUGH – KEEPING YOUR VIEWING EXPERIENCE STABLE WITH MOTORISED TV LIFTS AND TV MOUNTS
It goes without saying that boats can be unstable places, certainly in terms of enjoying home comforts like a TV. Even bigger vessels will be subject to much more rocking and rolling than the typical TV-viewing environment on good old, firm (and boring) dry land. However, this isn’t always properly accounted for when considering fitting a TV on a boat, and all too often the best options for motorised TV lifts or TV mounts are overlooked. This has a very real detrimental effect, both on your viewing pleasure and on the safety risks to all on board.
The first thing to do is to choose an appropriate area for your TV. This might be in a cabin or even in the cockpit, adjacent to a bar, or on an arch or bulkhead. Every boat will be different but a good starting point is to find an area that will suit your preferences for a viewing area, take a seat and look around for a spot with good visibility. Then see how much room you might have for a screen you can view comfortably. Some people even advise that you make a cardboard cut-out of your desired TV size to visualise how it works in the space.
The next step is choosing a TV that’s suitable for your boat. LED models are much lighter than plasma, which can certainly be an advantage. Power compatibility and power consumption might also be important factors for you. You might also want to consider whether a built-in DVD/Blu-Ray player would be a benefit to you and your crew, or whether a personal video recorder is a must to avoid missing shows.
Boats often present particular challenges for mounting TV units. There are fewer flat or straight surfaces available and the design of the boat usually means surfaces are curved and twisting. These days, there is a wide range of TV installation solutions for boats available from specialists like Ultralift, including motorised TV lifts for walls and ceilings, TV cabinets and a huge range of TV mounts. One solution for installing a TV on an arch or bulkhead might be a mount with a good range of motion which will allow you to store the TV away safely against the arch when not in use, but provide maximum adjustment for height and angle of viewing to deliver the best experience when you do sit down to a movie or TV show.
Of course, when you’re out on the water, getting a TV signal is unlikely to be as straightforward as it is at home. Many of us rely largely on streaming services for our entertainment and there are options to facilitate that for an entertainment system on board your boat. There is often connectivity at the marina, or from local cafes or libraries. If the bandwidth available isn’t sufficient for smooth streaming, an external Wi-Fi antenna might help. Another option is to stream from your mobile phone or other devices connected to the cellular network. There are obvious limitations to 4G coverage that become more apparent the further away from land you travel, but again there are signal boosters available, including kits designed specifically for boats which provide an amplifier, indoor and outdoor antennas, and coaxial cabling. At the more reliable, but more expensive, end of the market, there are also satellite services or content-delivery services like IP-MobileCast designed specifically to provide on-demand TV and movies to off-shore users.
Are you a boat owner looking for a solution to house your TV? Look no further than Ultralift for lifting and mounting solutions! Contact us to request a custom quotation.