Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Taming that Ultra Bright DVR Clock

We had an electrical storm a few days ago which knocked out power. When the juice was finally back, we turned on our DVR only to find that it was empty. Zilch. The content was long gone, and so was our list of shows to record. To be sure, this is a first world problem.

Verizon ended up expressing us a replacement cable box/DVR. And luckily, we had backed up our DVR settings to the cloud previously (Tip: if you have Fios and haven't backed up your DVR to the cloud, do so RIGHT NOW. It's easy to do, and why it's not done automatically is beyond me.), so restoring the schedule of shows to record was easy. Finally, there was Hulu to turn to catch up on the shows that we had, but lost (My plea to Shira: see, we can drop Fios and just use Hulu was not met with approval.).

This left me with one itty bitt problem remaining. The new DVR Verizon sent us is great, except the clock is terrifically bright. Which might be cool if the DVR wasn't in our bedroom, where the last thing we need is another nightlight (We've got multiple laptops, cellphones and printer to provide ample ambient light).

What I wanted was a set of dimmys, to tame the clock. But, I didn't have a set lying around and it was bed time. What to do?

Looking around, I saw a stack of multi-colored Post-It notes. I slapped a bright pink one the face of the clock, turned off the light, and what do you know? The clock was dim yet visible. And the pink paper turned the LED into a red (possibly night-vision friendly) color.

Here's what the final setup looks like:

(The Scotch Tape is a bit of overkill. But it keeps the paper flat against the clock, which makes it more visible when the lights are on.)

It won't win me any design awards, but it works. Never underestimate the power of a Post-It Note.

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