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A kitchen TV is a compact television which can rest easily on a kitchen counter or be mounted on a bracket beneath the cupboards. Kitchen TV models can vary from handheld units to 13" screens with DVD or VCR elements built in. Some ultramodern refrigerator units now feature a small kitchen tv or interactive computer monitor wired directly into the door.
Perhaps the most useful feature of a kitchen TV is accessibility while cooking. Many home chefs own DVDs or videotaped television shows featuring professional cooking demonstrations. Instead of traveling back and forth from the living room to the kitchen, cooks with a kitchen TV can follow the onscreen instructions in real time. If a vital step is missed, the tape or DVD can be quickly rewound.
Many homeowners also discover that a second television in the kitchen is useful during morning routines and meals. Children can watch their favorite cartoons while eating breakfast or parents can watch the morning news programs unobtrusively. During holidays, non-sports enthusiasts can watch other television shows or pre-recorded movies. A kitchen TV can be wired to cable or satellite services, or simply pick up the standard broadcast channels.
Although any smaller television could be placed in the kitchen area, a true kitchen TV has a few distinct advantages. Traditional television models may require a lot of counter space to accommodate a large tube, but under-the-cupboard kitchen TVs are designed to be bracketed into largely unused space. The counter top remains free for use. Flat screen televisions installed directly into refrigerator doors free up even more space for cooking. Handheld television units designed for kitchen use can also be carried into the car, which could prove useful during the last minutes of a sports event or drama.
Many television manufacturers market specific models for use as a kitchen TV. Remote control units may be covered with a washable plastic casing, since cooks may want to review a tape or DVD in the middle of a project. Extra mounting brackets or swivels may be included in kitchen TV models. Televisions in a kitchen environment must be designed to tolerate heat and humidity. They should also be easy to clean and resistant to spilled liquids. Since cooking involves a significant amount of downtime, a well-placed kitchen TV can help pass the time while waiting for food to finish cooking.