Cheap TV that doesn't turn itself off?
August 5, 2019 4:57 PM   Subscribe

I recently bought a LG Smart TV for my cats [tax] to watch YouTube videos, but it automatically turns itself off after a few hours of no activity on the remote control, which makes it unsuitable for our purposes. I need to find a different cheap TV that plays YouTube videos and stays on 24/7 until someone deliberately switches it off.

I already checked every single menu setting before calling LG customer service, who told me that the TV automatically turning itself off after a few hours was a built-in screen-saving feature that could NOT be disabled. So please no troubleshooting suggestions for this TV. I am certain that I need to return it and get a different TV. I just don't know how to ensure that a new TV won't also have this "feature" since it was not advertised in the product description of the TV I bought.

My cats need a TV because we just moved into a tiny apartment where the only view is a brick wall. At our old place they had three times as much space to run around and a tree full of birds and squirrels to look at all day. I don't want them to get bored and depressed because we're poor and can only afford a shitty little alley apartment. Fortunately, they love watching Paul Dinning's videos, so I just need a TV that won't switch itself off a few hours into a 100+ hour playlist.

Please advise, thanks!
posted by Jacqueline to Technology (7 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
The smart TV aspect may be the issue. What about a Roku stick and a non-smart TV. They usually need a timer set so they don't turn themselves off. Roku has a youtube app and you just shove it in a USB slot in the side for power and it connects to an HDMI for picture out. Seems to work fine when we use ours.
posted by Brockles at 5:03 PM on August 5, 2019

I mean, according to the manual ...this vizio has a setting to disable auto shut offs (under the Timers section). I've had a vizio previously and liked it, though not this one. Just search for the model number and "manual" and read through it to see what settings there are for any you're interested in. That's the best way to see all the features of the TV. And check the manual first before setting the TV up if you buy one. (PS: Pluto TV has many channels that just continue streaming as an active input. They even have a Cats channel.)
posted by Crystalinne at 6:15 PM on August 5, 2019 [2 favorites]

Do you have a home computer where you can set up a secondary, stand-alone display monitor and just have the videos running on that? Might even be cheaper and easier.
posted by Night_owl at 6:26 PM on August 5, 2019 [2 favorites]

I have a TV in my bedroom that usually would turn off on its own, but my google chrome case keeps it active.

Or just get an older 2nd hand tv.

or a monitor with an HDMI input.
posted by PuppetMcSockerson at 6:58 PM on August 5, 2019

I have a Roku TV (TCL) that has the same feature, but it can be turned off. The default is to power off after 4 hours. It has a YouTube channel through the Roku software, not sure if the four hour thing would even apply if you were watching a YouTube channel continuously.
posted by jzb at 7:26 PM on August 5, 2019

Seconding jzb on TCL: There's a power saving feature you can turn off, but even if it's left on it'll never kick in as long as you're actively streaming something on one of the Roku channels.
posted by SpiffyRob at 5:51 AM on August 6, 2019

One other strategy you may want to look into is getting an IR blaster--that is, a device that can emulate an infra-red remote control--and have it send a command to the TV every couple of hours. The homebrew DVR folks are (were?) heavily into this stuff as a way of controlling digital cable boxes.

This is what a quick Google found for me.

There may be other options (e.g. many older smartphones also have IR support.)
posted by suetanvil at 9:49 AM on August 6, 2019

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