Tired of looking at that ugly cable box? The obvious solution is to hide it behind behind closed doors. Unfortunately, today's cable boxes use IR (infrared) remotes, which require line of sight to work. So if you put your cable box behind doors, you'll have to open them whenever you want to change channels. Not an ideal solution.
However, there are a few easy ways around this IR problem that don't require drilling, running more wires or hiring a home theater installer. Find out which of the following solutions is right for you.
Relay commands behind closed doors
Sewell has two easy ways to relay commands to a cable box that you've hidden behind closed door. If you already have everything hooked up, Sewell have a discreet battery powered IR repeater, called Ghost IR, that you can easily retrofit into a cabinet. Stick the blaster on the inside of the cabinet in line with your components. Then run the flat wire out of the cabinet and stick the receiver on the outside. It's as simple as that. The battery will last for 18-24 months and is easily replaceable.
Price: $38.95 on Amazon
If you have easy access to the HDMI port on the back of your TV and cable box, you can use the Sewell InjectIR. An IR receiver plugs into the end of the HDMI cable that you plug into the back of your TV. On the other end of your HDMI cable (the one that goes into your cable box) you plug in the transmitter.
Price: $54.95 on SewellDirect.com or Amazon
Send video from across the room
If there's nowhere to hide your cable box, you can choose to put it in a nearby cabinet or closet and send the video signal and IR commands with a wireless HDMI kit. A basic kit, like the ActionTec My Wireless TV 2 is easy to install and works at a distance of up to 100 feet.
Price: $176.71 for a pair
If you need more range, the IOGEAR Wireless 5x2 Matrix Pro will do the trick. It's capable of sending Full HD 1080p video to a receiver up to 200 feet away. And, you can add more than one receiver, so you could use the cable box in your living room to watch TV in your bedroom.
Price: $699.95 on IOGEAR.com or $519.91 on Amazon, additional receivers are $249.95 on IOGEAR.com or $179.95 on Amazon
[Image credits: Sewell, ActionTec, IOGEAR]