Since you clicked on this page, you’ve probably already decided to complete your travelling experience with a portable television. Whether you’re on the road or at sea, you still want to be able to unwind and enjoy your favourite films, TV shows, sport matches and Netflix programmes.
And we don’t blame you! After all, what’s better than kicking back and relaxing in your cozy mobile home, drink of choice in hand, after a long day of travel and adventure?
But with all the choice at hand, how do you go about picking the best mobile TV for your RV or boat? In this article, we will walk you through your options one step at a time…
Step 1: Your standard 240V TV won’t be your travels’ best friend
You might already be aware that 240 Volt home televisions can be “converted” to function at 12 Volt using special adaptors. And you might have already thought about converting a home television for your travels. All things considered, these televisions can be much cheaper than the purpose-built 12 Volt TVs.
But there is a catch: home televisions are designed to sit permanently in one spot at a fairly stable temperature. For this reason, they perform best in a static, stable and predictable environment.
As you can imagine, life for a mobile TV is drastically different, with extreme vibrations and temperature changes on the daily menu. This means that all those damage-prone areas in your standard home TV may not hold up in a mobile environment.
So when choosing your new portable TV, select a brand that specialises in 12 Volt, purpose-built televisions.
Step 2: Make sure your TV will last the test of time (through potholes, choppy waters and many nights in the great outdoors)
As you browse a selection of 12 Volt TVs advertised on the market, keep your eyes peeled for the following basic criteria:
– Vibration resistance
– Temperature shifts tolerance
Simply because a TV is advertised as a 12 Volt TV, it doesn’t mean that it was designed for a mobile environment. Some of the cheaper brands, for instance, use materials and designs more suitable for a static environment.
High-quality, purpose-built mobile televisions will use a technology that allows for shock absorption and vibration tolerance. This includes vibration-resistant circuit boards, silicon-sealed internal components and metal plating for extra durability.
These features also shield the TVs from temperature variations.
Make sure that the wall brackets can be fixed directly into the metal framing of the television case, so you can mount your TV on the wall with the peace of mind that it won’t collapse through all the jarring and shaking.
Step 3: The what and why of Surge Protection
If you are used to life on the road or at sea, you might be familiar with the flickering screens and power meltdowns. These are a result of irregular voltage supply.
Truth is that solar panels and your 12 Volt DC battery can be quite capricious at times…
When it comes to your portable TV, the added surge protection will increase Voltage supplied to 12V if lower, and decrease it to 12V if it creeps up. Surge protection modules can be bought separately or fitted directly in the TV. Once installed, they will look for sudden increases in voltage then switch into protection mode to absorb and suppress the energy spike.
So while you are browsing for your new 12 Volt TV, make sure to check if it has an in-built surge protection system.
Step 4: What viewing experience are you after?
Just because you will be away from home, does it really mean you have to compromise on your viewing experience and settle for less?
Even in the world of portable televisions, you can still come across great, powerful sound and crisp, clear TV screens. You just have to look for them…
Check the built-in speakers of your soon-to-be new TV and make sure you will be happy with the sound. Do you want the option for Bluetooth audio to connect your Bluetooth speaker or headphones? And what about the audio out function, which allows you to use headphones while still receiving sound
through the speakers?
And as far as the screen goes, did know that the latest LED technology can provide for beautifully vivid panels and zero dead pixels resolution?
Step 5: Check for portability and convenience
First of all: how much space have you got in your RV or boat? When space is a constraint every inch counts, so make sure to measure, measure and measure. And plan your space. You can typically get 12 Volt TVs in more and smaller sizes compared to home TVs, so take advantage of your options. If you’re after a mid sized TV, our 32″ SMART TV would be the perfect addition to your motorhome.
Secondly, look for a sleek and compact model. No matter how many features you want to have built in your TV, you still need clean design and a TV that doesn’t get in the way of your vehicle’s interior. And whilst we are at this, let’s be honest. The last thing you want on your mind when moving from one stop to
the next is a bunch of tangled wires and extra accessories to put away.
So if you can find a sleek TV with all the features that you need seamlessly built into the design, just go for it. You can thank us later. Make sure that built-in features have been engineered to be as small and unobtrusive as possible and carefully scaled for optimal portability, without affecting performance or
Finally, check the TV weight. With all the technology available nowadays, there are some pretty lightweight models available. So there is no need to load your RV or boat with a heavy, chunky TV.
Step 6: Don’t Underestimate TV Remotes!
Whilst it makes sense to spend a lot of time checking your TV, ensuring you are happy with the size, features and design, don’t forget to check the features of your new TV remote too.
One of the best features in a mobile TV remote is the auto-tune button. What this means is that when you move from one place to the next, you can retune your TV by simply pressing a button on your remote. Your TV will do the rest for you. This is particularly useful when you are not quite sure what the source of
reception is in your new location.
Other features to look for include a signal strength button (the secret is in the name), which will allow you to point your antenna in the best possible direction, the brightness button, to switch from full brightness to power saver mode, and a Bluetooth button in case your TV has built-in Bluetooth features.
Well now you have it: 6 steps to make your TV browsing experience a little more streamlined. Of course, there is still a lot to consider, and you might have some more questions or doubts. If that’s the case, why not keep the conversation going?
You can ask your questions in the comments below, if you want your fellow browsers to share in your learning experience, or you can hit us in the chat, via email or on the phone.
As always, our customer team is more than happy to help with any enquiries.
And remember… There is no such thing as a stupid question! So get asking: we cannot wait to hear from you!
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