Win A Belkin ScreenCast AV 4

Belkin's ScreenCast AV 4 eliminates cable hassle by letting you stream AV from up to four devices in your home, giving you high-def entertainment without cable hasle. Lifehacker has four to give away. Want to win one? Read on to find out how.

To be in the running to win one of these four awesome units (valued at $296 each), just post your answer to the following question in the comments:

Tell us your worst ever-experience dealing with cable tangle in your lounge room.

The four entries we judge the most interesting and amusing will win. Full terms and conditions here. Entries close at 5pm on Friday 24 February, so get cracking!


Comments

    I broke my wrist tripping over the cables while trying to sort out the mess behind my home theatre, also will allow me to watch the footy in the lads room instead of paying for a second foxtel box, cheers!

    My father picked up a new entertainment system, The works, Amps, blue ray surround, media centre, all of it, and he couldn’t be bothered with the Pro Install thinking he would set it up himself. When I got there to have a look, the Cables were so tangled up from him almost randomly plugging everything into everything that not only did it not work, it took me close to 30 min just to untangle and start from scratch. Thankfully my Mother won’t let he ticker like that unless I’m around.

    I also taught him HDMI and USB cables are not interchangeable.

    When we moved into our new house I was determined to do the geek thing and have every connection possible to play media from things like laptops, xbox, dvd player, etc...

    I had everything setup and when I fired it up NOTHING worked. I must have moved the TV unit back and forward across the floor a hundred times trying to get it right.

    It all went balls up when my wife finally got so annoyed she called our electrician to help me. He took one look and said- let me get the 'other' tool bag as this is going to take a while.

    3 hours and a lot of $$$ later he said- look just plug in the xbox and use that to keep it simple :(

    Once I, oh wait...

    Instead of placing the TV in my bedroom close to where the antenna outlet was on the wall, I had to put the TV where my wife wanted it. This meant running a temporary antenna cable half way across the room. One night I tripped over the cable and the TV fell off the dresser and broke (rather than me thankfully). Now my wife's new (cheaper) TV is near the antenna socket.... hmmmm husband 1, wife 0.

    OOH OOH I KNOW! Oh hey look it's that stray cat!

    wait... does this count as trolling? SORRY.

    I went to visit my Mum and Dad, as the resident "techno-wiz" in the family I am the first person to get asked to fix things. "The new DVD needs to be hooked up" dad said. After a few years of my Dad tinkering with a few things now and then, the tangled mess from 5.1 surround, a record player, a VCR, the old DVD player, digital set-top box, new DVD player (not hooked up right). It took me about an hour to wade through both dust and tangles to get it working and to get the old DVD out.

    To set the scene, I currently rent an apartment and I have my router sitting on my TV cabinet as that happens to be the most convenient spot for telephone cable access. I then have a massive 20m CAT6 cable running down the hallway to my study where all the computers sit.

    So I was just lazin' on the couch when i heard a scream followed by multiple thuds and looked up to see my speakers fall off the TV cabinet followed by my wife complaining most vehemently about my cat6 wiring solution that she had just tripped over and fallen flat on her face.

    I quickly ran to see that my speakers were alright (they are only small Orb speakers) and called out to ask if she needed help. Thankfully there was only a small dent in the speaker grill and she was ok, fewf!

    Turns out the cat6 cable had gotten so tangled up with everything not only just behind the TV to pull my speakers off the cabinet but also in the study that half the books on the top of my shelves had been knocked off too!

    I have now taped the cat6 cable down so no one trips on it anymore, lol. I don't think it's possible to untangle all my cables...

    I can't even access the back of the amp. One (or perhaps multiple?) cable is so tight that the amp is unable to move from its slot in the solid jarrah TV stand. I have no idea how dad set it up, or which cable it is that is stretched so tight. The cables are tightly wound together to fit through the cable access hole. The Foxtel installer was annoyed at it too and tried to get away with plugging directly into the TV.

    Back in ye old days when my dog was still a puppy, he "laid some cable" right in the middle of the lounge room. Don't think the ScreenCast AV4 would have helped in that instance though...

    We have 3 telephone cables running around the wall from the lounge to the kitchen around the corner behind a large floor to roof, wall to wall unit to behind where the port is, 2 unusable (due to mice bites and another with sisters intervention cutting off the end with her computer table).

    Then we have the computer with so many different cords hanging out the back because it has no front port (6 different USB cables hanging plus all the peripherals)

    Right next door to this is our large old CRT, to this we have connected a Set Top Box, VCR, DVD, a games box and a backup DVD player, all of these cables have to be placed so that all devices can be viewed via the VCR, so we have about 8 RCA sets and a few coaxials, god I wish my mum would learn to integrate.

    But I better not tell you the dangerous ways of my Pop with 3 powerboards connected to 1 double circuit or my Aunties dangerous cabling that is only just long enough to fit and zaps you when u plug it all in

    Moved into our new house in Queensland and wired everything up in a mess. When I came back to clean it up, I grabbed this big coil of cable and it promptly wrapped itself round my arm. It was actually a carpet python that had found a nice quiet spot to sleep. Suffice to say I now look closely at rolls of cable before picking them up.

    Behind my entertainment unit is a mess of cables including connections to the TV, a 4-way component splitter, three videogame consoles and two computers (Macbook and a PC). Being a Nintendo tragic, the device sitting highest off the ground is the Wii Sensor Bar - therefore this is the longest cable out of all of them and by far the thinnest and most fragile.

    Recently I booted the Wii up (via the remote) to play some Zelda and found there was no pointer on-screen, and if there's no infrared signal, then you can't do much.. It took about ten minutes of cable de-tangling to find the issue - a small animal had chewed my Wii Sensor Bar cable almost clean through and the inner wires had been damaged.

    The culprit is still at large. The new Wii Sensor Bar has arrived and is the only cable that is not touching any other cable behind my entertainment unit. Come at me, rat-bro.

    I went around to a mates place to watch the game once on his new 60" wall mounted beauty. The TV looked great up there on the wall unfortunately for my mate he had two problems disintegrating masonry and an evil dog.

    Midway through the game the dog comes bounding into the lounge room large stick in his mouth ready for some fun times, next thing you know the dogs stick is caught in the cables coming on of the TV. The dog then tries to free his stick and manges to pull the TV off the wall along with wall mount bracket and dyna bolt.

    Expensive day for my friend.
    Replacement TV: $2000 (his credit card insurance covered this thankfully, have you guys ever done a story about credit card insurance and covering at fault damage?)
    Lots of masonry work to repair his wall: $5000 but better than his house falling down

    This one time I pulled my headphones out of my pocket, I swear it took like a minute to untangle them! I was in the loungeroom at the time...

    Ok, that story wasn't very lounge-roomy. Or interesting. Or funny. Or even really much of a story at all. Damn I wish I was better at making stuff up...

    How do I upload a pic and just show you the current cable tangles I am trying to fix?

      Upload to a third-party service like Photobucket, Flickr or Imgur and post the link here.

    tripped on cable mess right after setting it up and broke my arm.

    A few years back now… when a huge TV was 68cm and weighed 50kg, I had the works.

    TV, VCR, DVD, Playstation, 5 Disc CD Changer, 200w Amp, Audio Switching box, all connected with many, many meters of cable.

    From the front this all looked fine - but if you peak behind the laminate chipboard television unit it looked like that scene from Raiders of The Lost Ark when Indy fell into the snake pit.

    The organised chaos of cables was fine until the day my Cat was not well and thought the privacy of "behind the TV unit" was a great place to do a huge amount diarrhoea.

    Cables can be a annoying to untangle, but when covered in cat diarrhoea it is a complete nightmare.

    From that day on I kept my cables very very neat and tidy.

    my mother moves around our furniture almost fortnightly, to the point where we no longer reconnect the cables. If it's not working, we're not dealing with it. The tangled cables have gotten to a point where if you pick one up you pick them all up - the tv, dvd, digital box, satellite box, wii, xbox, surround sound and whatever other leftover cables there are.

    I had been procrastinating for months on the jumbled mess of tangle I had at the back of my AV set-up after constant upgrades and additions. Needless to say after a pretty huge weekend of viewing/listening I had falling asleep only to be rudely awoken by my screaming house-mate and the curtains and ceiling aflame with the jumble of cables spitting green/blue electrical flames and my television now weeping molten plastic onto the wooden floor-boards.

    After 30 minutes of frenzied fire-fighting, arguably making every mistake in the book we'd managed to douse the entire fire but were left with half of the room's floor-boards ruined, the wall and ceiling pitch-black and the entire flat reeking of electrical fumes (not pretty)!

    What I've omitted so far is that I'd managed to sell my flat only a week before and the new owners were another week away. The gist of it is I took a week off work, spent a small fortune on replacing the floor, sanding and painting the wall and ceiling... and generally trying every trick in the book to get the horrendous odour out. The result? Sale went through however without me making a penny on purchase price thanks to the few thousand dollars spent, not to mention a new found appreciation for keeping my cords neat!

    True Story...

    New house - Big TV, PS2, Foxtel, DVD, Apple TV, HTPC. 5.1 sound so cables running to the back speakers under the rug.... all cool.. NOPE!!
    4 year old who thinks it fun to pull them and the other cables out from where they hide ARRRGGGHHH. Also it great sport to hide all the remotes... the little %*&@$!!! :-)

    My friend had come to australia from japan with her new kitten in tow.
    She had moved into a new apartment which was not cat friendly and needed someplace to keep her kitten until she could find another place.
    She asked me if she could keep the kitten at my place. I had met the kitten and it seemed cute so why not..... what harm could a kitten do?
    What i did not realize was when the kitten is left alone it changed from a playful pint sized feline into a raging humongous tornado.
    I returned home to find my flat screen face down on the floor damaged beyond repair after the kitten had decided to wreck havoc on the collection of cables that connected my tv to my entertainment system.
    Bad kitty indeed.

    A friend of mine tripped over a charging cable in the university library and we all saw a Dell XPS fly'n high ... :D

    Before going away for 6 weeks, I queued up everything I wanted to tape on the Tivo and then, to save the world, reached behind the TV to disconnect its power lead from the board.
    We arrived back from our holiday, exteremely relaxed, but keen to catch up on House and our other favourite shows. I was then extremely dismayed to find that the Tivo had recorded something like 70 hrs of snow for us. Alas, when I had pulled out the TV power cable, the aerial was wrapped around it, and had pulled out of its socket just enough to lose signal (but not obvious to the eye). My wife was unimpressed ("Why couldn't you have just left it alone" etc...).

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