PDA

View Full Version : Flat Screen, Plasma, LCD HDTV... HELP!!!



TeamBoone
12-27-2006, 06:37 PM
I had a 32" Sony which bit the dust a couple weeks before Thanksgiving. They tried EVERYTHING to fix it, including a new circuit board. No dice.

So I'm in the market for a new TV.

First of all, I do not subscribe to any premium channels nor do I have digital cable (and won't be getting it in the near future) because to put it bluntly, I simply can't afford it on top of all the other stuff that nickle and dimes my budget these days. Regular cable is ok for me until it's no longer available.

I'm hoping to stick with Sony but am willing to consider other brands if they are good. Any brand suggestions and, if so, why?

The bigger question on my mind is, what type of television should I be considering (besides nothing with a picture tube)?

Plasma: I'm not sure I can afford it so that can probably be eliminated right off the top unless someone can give me a whole lot of reasons why that is the way to go.

LCD, HDTV, Digital, Flat Screen? I don't even know what all that means.

Sears has a 32" Sony flat screen SDTV with built-in ATSC digital tuner for $649.99. Is that a good thing? I think I'm willing to go as high as about $800, hopefully on sale so that I'll actually be getting an even better one.

Also, is it a good idea to buy the extended warranty? I never do and so far have never needed it (it wouldn't have helped with my Sony because it was too old).

I need a fairly quick education. Thanks for any help you guys can provide.

vaticanplum
12-27-2006, 06:59 PM
I can't help you, but check this out:

http://www.redszone.com/forums/showthread.php?t=48500&highlight=buying

Looks like some advice and redirects in here.

redsfan30
12-27-2006, 07:13 PM
I just bought a 46 inch LCD for Christmas and am loving it like nothing else.

That doesn't really help you with what they all mean, I don't have time to go into all that but hopefully somebody else does.

Tommyjohn25
12-27-2006, 07:43 PM
Okay, I'll tell you what I know as I am in the market for a new TV myself in the near future and have done some homework.

Plasma-Probably the best picture quality of all the "High Definition" TV's, also the most expensive in most cases. The biggest downfall of a plasma is the have a relatively short life span since the plasma, much like blood in a human, has it's own "life" and will burn out after an average of 8 years as I understand it.

LCD-Very good quality picture second to only plasma, and to the naked eye probably no different at all. These TV's are a little less expensive in most cases depending on the size you want, if you want to see the picture quality of a LCD screen look no further than a laptop computer, LCD screens are standard with them.

DLP-This is a fairly new player in the high def game, these TV's are actually rear projection which is powered by thousands of tiny little mirrors inside the set. From what I've seen of these they are the best bang for your buck if you want to go high def, they may not "yet" be as sharp as plasma or LCD, but it is also a new technology which is still improving, and will still be a hell of a lot better than any standard def TV set. Probably the best thing about DLP is the fact that it will have the longest life span of the the big three due to it being projection instead of plasma or LCD which will suffer burnout.

The only other info I have to offer is that of resolutions, SDTV which I believe you asked about in your post stands for "Standard Definition TV" This means it is broadcast in 480I resolution, this number is the same for all SDTV's. The next levels are all considered HDTV or "High Definiton" These resolutions are, from worst to best, 720I, 720P, 1080I, and 1080P. "I" stands for interlaced and "P" stands for progressive, which is how the pixels get sent across the screen, progressive is better, but again, more expensive.

My best advice to you, go HDTV, it makes a world of difference and soon SDTV's will be obsolete. In your price range I would recommend staying away from plasma, glance at the LCD's, and take a good long hard look at DLP, you may be able to swing a 30 inch DLP in the 800-1000 dollar price range, hopefully this info helped you out in your decision.

TeamBoone
12-27-2006, 09:39 PM
Wow, TJ! Thank you soooooooooo much!

It's definitely HDTV all the way. I'm on the fence regarding LCD vs DLP. New technologies that are not yet tried and true always scare me; plus, you say it isn't yet as good as LCD. Hopefully, I won't be buying another TV for many years so I should probably go with LCD at this time.

I'm still thinking though... again, thanks so much.

And VP, I'll take a look at that link too. ty.

Virginia Beach Reds
12-27-2006, 09:49 PM
If you watch sports, chose plasma.

I bought a 42" LG plasma in November...nice set. Panasonic also makes great TVs in the plasma market.

the only reason to choose LCD (TODAY) is if you watch TV in brightly lit rooms. I have several windows in the room where my TV is and I have no problems.

Do the research...with all of the crazy stuff before Christmas, I paid $1,199 for my set (at Circuit City). Not bad.

You won't be disappointed. Great purchase.

Chip R
12-27-2006, 09:57 PM
I can't help you, but check this out:

http://www.redszone.com/forums/showthread.php?t=48500&highlight=buying

Looks like some advice and redirects in here.


How could we forget the magic that was Rob Dicken? :cry:

Jpup
12-27-2006, 10:27 PM
This should answer most of your questions:

http://reviews.cnet.com/Televisions/4520-7608_7-1016109.html?tag=dir

RBA
12-27-2006, 10:33 PM
I would keep my eyes peeled for a deal on one of the Hot Deal forums such as Fatwallet.com or Slickdeals.net.


At Fatwallet you can also enter in a keyword such as "LCD" or "Plasma" and you will be automatically notified when a deal comes up. I would aim for an 37 inch HDTV with integrated ATSC tuner LCD or Plasma for under $700. It's real possible to get a deal in that price range and than some.

With an ATSC tuner it is very possible to get HD channels CBS, ABC, NBC, Fox etc. with a small antenna in some areas.

Enter your address in at antennaweb.org to see what local HD channels you can get and what type of antenna you would need.

CrackerJack
12-27-2006, 10:37 PM
With no cable digital or HD channels, you're basically buying a DVD screen.

My 42" Plasma looks fantastic with my Sony up-converting HD DVD player - and anything broadcast in HD - but anything else looks pretty crappy. Digital channels do look better than analog broadcasts, but I think the FCC has mandated all broadcasts to be digital at some point in 2007, HD in 2009. Right now the digital-only broadcasts look better on a CRT TV with a digital tube, and smaller LCD's (minus 32 inches or so) if you use an S-Video or HDMI cable etc..., But the big, heavy CRT's with a digital tube with flat screens look great across the board, and will, for the next 3 years at least. Again Plasma's and LCD's only are worthwhile in digital broadcasts, HD and DVD format (because it is also digital - preferably a DVD upconvertor that can display in HD 16:9 and at least 720p).

Plasma sets last 30-40,000 hours (2-3 years) and LCD's 40-60,000 hours (3-5 years) so keep that in mind also, based on what I've read.

I would go the LCD route if you're set on an HD TV, and you will really enjoy your DVD movies, ecspecially if you get a $115-$150 DVD upconvertor player for HD, and it will last longer than your Plasma and cost a bit less.

TeamBoone
12-27-2006, 10:57 PM
I can't help you, but check this out:

http://www.redszone.com/forums/showthread.php?t=48500&highlight=buying

Looks like some advice and redirects in here.

Wow! I just read this entire thread (thx for the link) and my head is spinning! I'm now more confused than ever and have absolutely no idea what to buy... IMHO, each type has a serious downside that doesn't justify the upside (or the cost)... burn-in, side angle viewing, special cables, imperfect blacks, lamp replacement, costly warranties... good Lord!!

It really really shouldn't be this hard to buy a TV that will last and give you a decent picture... which is all I want and perfectly describes a CRT television. But unfortunately, they are being phased out so I don't want to waste my money... plus, they're so heavy. My 32" weighed a ton.

George Foster
12-27-2006, 11:01 PM
I would not buy a plasma unless you buy a commercial plasma (like at airports) these are expensive about double the price. They say that the half like if 8-10 years on a regular plasma. That's crappy!!! That means in 8 years the TV will be half as bright as when you bought it. I guess that also means that it will be 25% less bright in like 4 or 5 years. No thanks. LCD is your best bet for the money.:thumbup:

RBA
12-27-2006, 11:01 PM
This one isn't bad for about $900 plus tax....

http://www.circuitcity.com/ssm/Polaroid-37-LCD-HDTV-FLM3732/sem/rpsm/oid/143694/rpem/ccd/productDetail.do

LoganBuck
12-27-2006, 11:10 PM
Wow! I just read this entire thread (thx for the link) and my head is spinning! I'm now more confused than ever and have absolutely no idea what to buy... IMHO, each type has a serious downside that doesn't justify the upside (or the cost)... burn-in, side angle viewing, special cables, imperfect blacks, lamp replacement, costly warranties... good Lord!!

It really really shouldn't be this hard to buy a TV that will last and give you a decent picture... which is all I want and perfectly describes a CRT television. But unfortunately, they are being phased out so I don't want to waste my money... plus, they're so heavy. My 32" weighed a ton.

I hear you. I have been looking for a new TV for my bedroom. I would like a 32" TV, and am limited by how deep the TV can be as it goes in an armoire. That thread just left me paralized. I would like to spend the same or less than you want to. What do most people think about Olevia and Vizio? They recieve alot of advertising and they seem to fit both mine, and TeamBoone's parameters. One more question, what is the life expectance of an LCD TV?

TeamBoone
12-27-2006, 11:11 PM
I also don't understand what all the ratios mean.

You guys are great; thank you so much for all your help.

macro
12-27-2006, 11:19 PM
Plasma sets last 30-40,000 hours (2-3 years) and LCD's 40-60,000 hours (3-5 years) so keep that in mind also, based on what I've read.

These numbers are kinda misleading, CJ. There are only 8,760 hours in a year, so if you ran a TV 24 hours a day, it would take over 4.5 years to burn it out. Many Plasmas are now advertised at 60,000 hours, so that would work out to over 27 years of use at six hours a day. Of course, we won't know for over twenty more years if these claims are going to hold true or not. :)


Plasma-Probably the best picture quality of all the "High Definition" TV's, also the most expensive in most cases. The biggest downfall of a plasma is the have a relatively short life span since the plasma, much like blood in a human, has it's own "life" and will burn out after an average of 8 years as I understand it.

LCD-Very good quality picture second to only plasma, and to the naked eye probably no different at all. These TV's are a little less expensive in most cases depending on the size you want, if you want to see the picture quality of a LCD screen look no further than a laptop computer, LCD screens are standard with them.

DLP-This is a fairly new player in the high def game, these TV's are actually rear projection which is powered by thousands of tiny little mirrors inside the set. From what I've seen of these they are the best bang for your buck if you want to go high def, they may not "yet" be as sharp as plasma or LCD, but it is also a new technology which is still improving, and will still be a hell of a lot better than any standard def TV set. Probably the best thing about DLP is the fact that it will have the longest life span of the the big three due to it being projection instead of plasma or LCD which will suffer burnout.

A distinction that should be made is that there are LCD Flat Panels, which are more expensive than Plasma in many cases, and LCD Rear Projection, which are among the least expensive HDTV's along with the other projection technologies (DLP, etc). And again, they're advertising flat panels (both LCD and Plasma) at 60K hours, so life span shouldn't be an issue. I don't know of anyone that keeps a TV more than 15 years or so anyway. Plus, rear projection TVs have a bulb that burns out and must be replaced at $200-300 a pop (I forget how many hours they're supposed to last).

Based on what I had read online, the wife and I had all but decided to go with a Sony rear projection. But after we saw them in the store, we realized that the side viewing angles were bad and the images just weren't as crisp as they were on the flat panels. It may have been the way the store had them set up and adjusted, I don't know. But regardless, we've now decided to keep saving nickels until we can get the 50" flat panel that we want.

TB, here are more links that may help you sort through all of this:

http://www.crutchfieldadvisor.com/S-0QuniRDsYhm/learningcenter/home/tv_hdtv.html

http://www.cnet.com/4520-7874_1-5102926-1.html?tag=prmo1 (http://www.cnet.com/4520-7874_1-5102926-1.html?tag=prmo1) (may be the same as the one Jpup provided)

http://www.crutchfield.com/S-ZrAP3qqkta5/App/Tools/ProductRecommender.aspx?g=260050

GIK
12-27-2006, 11:20 PM
TB, if you don't plan to order digital cable or HDTV service, I would look for a 30-34" CRT HDTV. If you can find one with a built-in HD tuner you can at least get a few Hi-Def channels for free with an external antenna. Truly, though, standard definition broadcast on a LCD/Plasma/DLP is not awe inspiring. A CRT is much more forgiving - and, if you get a HD CRT, future proof as well. My 2 cents.

macro
12-27-2006, 11:26 PM
Sears has a 32" Sony flat screen SDTV with built-in ATSC digital tuner for $649.99. Is that a good thing? I think I'm willing to go as high as about $800, hopefully on sale so that I'll actually be getting an even better one.

TB, I just went back and noticed this part of your post. The TV you referenced is a tube television. Perhaps the use of the words "flat screen" misled you. Flat screen is not the same as flat panel. Flat screen means that the glass that makes up the picture is flat and square, as opposed to curved outward and with rounded corners, like so many of the old TVs were. Most CRT (tube) TVs today (except for the lowest-end bargain models) have flat screens, but they're still tube TVs - they're thick and heavy, just like TVs have been for decades.

EDIT: I was composing my post as GIK was posting, and he is exactly right! Just because it seems that the whole world is jumping headfirst onto the big screen HDTV bandwagon, doesn't mean it is the best choice for everyone. Non-digital (analog) signals look better on a tube TV than anything else, and it will be several years before HDTV becomes the norm rather than the exception. By then, the price of sets will have come down drastically.

919191
12-28-2006, 01:41 AM
I concur with GIK and Macro. If you aren't going to get any HDTV, don't get an HDTV. Standard broadcasts can be pretty fuzzy. It's a price some of us will pay to see HD (Sunrise Earth-wow!) but if it isn't your thing, don't get it. If you do decide to get it, for the over the air broadbasts on network (free), don't worry about an HD antennae, there really isn't one- HD is broadcast on UHF and VHF bands, and a standard antennae is fine, as long as it's specsa are appropriate.

You might want to PM RBA about this too.

RBA
12-28-2006, 02:31 AM
Also on a wide-screen all those skinny Hollywood stars look normal with the SDTV stretched. ;)

RBA
12-28-2006, 02:38 AM
40" LCD TV with tuner $900 after $100 rebate.

http://forums.slickdeals.net/showthread.php?sduid=98146&t=409265

Ltlabner
12-28-2006, 07:49 AM
TB, if you don't plan to order digital cable or HDTV service, I would look for a 30-34" CRT HDTV. If you can find one with a built-in HD tuner you can at least get a few Hi-Def channels for free with an external antenna. Truly, though, standard definition broadcast on a LCD/Plasma/DLP is not awe inspiring. A CRT is much more forgiving - and, if you get a HD CRT, future proof as well. My 2 cents.

I think this is the direction Mrs Ltlabner and I are going to go. We don't have digital cable and don't watch tons and tons of movies. We just want a little bigger screen and little bigger picture than what we already have.

We're looking at this one...

http://www.bestbuy.com/site/olspage.jsp?skuId=7685089&st=lg+30FS4D&type=product&id=1134703573897

We don't want to get much bigger with the overall size of the unit. If you get much bigger than this size it seems like the TV cabinet gets huge. So this is a good size, the price is right and compared to the wall of TV's at the store, the picture looked really good.

If anybody has any experience with this unit please let me know. I found a number of positive reviews on the web but am always interested if something measures up to the RZ standard.

GIK
12-28-2006, 09:57 AM
This is the CRT (tube) HDTV I have (30" version) in the living room:
http://www.bestbuy.com/site/olspage.jsp?skuId=7705799&type=product&productCategoryId=pcmcat95100050007&id=1138087658070

I absolutely recommend it.

GIK
12-28-2006, 10:01 AM
I found a number of positive reviews on the web but am always interested if something measures up to the RZ standard.

Start reading:
http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showthread.php?t=634002

:)

RBA
12-28-2006, 10:59 AM
Also, if you find the TV you like at a local store, Circuit City has a temporary pricematch policy of 125 Percent.

RBA
12-28-2006, 11:02 AM
Maybe this one...

http://www.circuitcity.com/ssm/OLEVIA-32-2-Series-LCD-HDTV-232V/sem/rpsm/oid/163702/rpem/ccd/productDetail.do

OLEVIA 32" 2 Series LCD HDTV

Order anytime @ 1-800-843-2489 Home (http://www.circuitcity.com/ccd/home.do) > TV & Video (http://www.circuitcity.com/ssm/TV-Video/sem/rpsm/catOid/-12866/N/20012866/rpem/ccd/department.do) > Televisions (http://www.circuitcity.com/ssm/Televisions/sem/rpsm/catOid/-12867/N/20012866+20012867/rpem/ccd/category.do) > Flat Panel TVs (http://www.circuitcity.com/ssm/Flat-Panel-TVs/sem/rpsm/catOid/-12869/N/20012866+20012867+20012869/rpem/ccd/category.do) > Product Information for OLV 232V
http://www.circuitcity.com/IMAGE/app/r/icon_email.gif (?Subject=Buy%20the%20OLEVIA%2032%22%202%20Series% 20LCD%20HDTV%20%28232V%29%20and%20other%20Flat%20P anel%20TVs%20at%20circuitcity.com &Body= http%3A%2F%2Fwww.circuitcity.com%3A80%2Fccd%2Fjsp% 2Flayout%2FwsaLayout.jsp%3Foid%3D163702) Email a friend (?Subject=Buy%20the%20OLEVIA%2032%22%202%20Series% 20LCD%20HDTV%20%28232V%29%20and%20other%20Flat%20P anel%20TVs%20at%20circuitcity.com &Body= http%3A%2F%2Fwww.circuitcity.com%3A80%2Fccd%2Fjsp% 2Flayout%2FwsaLayout.jsp%3Foid%3D163702) document.write('http://www.redszone.com/IMAGE/app/r/icon_print.gif (javascript:window.print()) Print (javascript:window.print())'); http://www.circuitcity.com/IMAGE/app/r/icon_print.gif (javascript:window.print()) Print (javascript:window.print())


function createPageView(pageId,catId) { cmSetProduction(); cmCreatePageviewTag(pageId,catId,"","","","","","","");}
http://www.circuitcity.com/IMAGE/product/detail/olv/EC.OLV.232V.JPG http://www.circuitcity.com/IMAGE/app/r/icon_magnify.gif (http://www.circuitcity.com/rpsm/oid/163702/type/1/catId/ENLARGE+VIEW+%3E+TV+%26+VIDEO+%3E+TELEVISIONS+%3E+ FLAT+PANEL+TVS/rpem/ccd/imagePopup.do) Enlarge (http://www.circuitcity.com/rpsm/oid/163702/type/1/catId/ENLARGE+VIEW+%3E+TV+%26+VIDEO+%3E+TELEVISIONS+%3E+ FLAT+PANEL+TVS/rpem/ccd/imagePopup.do)
http://www.circuitcity.com/IMAGE/app/r/icon_photo.gif (http://www.circuitcity.com/rpsm/oid/163702/index/1/type/2/rpem/ccd/imagePopup.do) More images (http://www.circuitcity.com/rpsm/oid/163702/index/1/type/2/rpem/ccd/imagePopup.do)
http://www.circuitcity.com/IMAGE/app/r/icon_3d.gif (http://www.circuitcity.com/flashdetection.jsp?ModelID=/IMAGE/nueweb/olv/NW.OLV.232V.SWF&OID=163702&CMPageID=3D View: OLV 232V OLEVIA 32" 2 Series LCD HDTV&CMCategoryID=3D VIEW > TV & VIDEO > TELEVISIONS > FLAT PANEL TVS) 3D View (http://www.circuitcity.com/flashdetection.jsp?ModelID=/IMAGE/nueweb/olv/NW.OLV.232V.SWF&OID=163702&CMPageID=3D View: OLV 232V OLEVIA 32" 2 Series LCD HDTV&CMCategoryID=3D VIEW > TV & VIDEO > TELEVISIONS > FLAT PANEL TVS) OLEVIA 32" 2 Series LCD HDTV (232V)


OLV 232V
720p resolution
1600:1 contrast ratio
Widescreen (16:9)

Built-in HD tuner
HDMI input
PC-compatible



Price was:
$899.99
You save:
-$300.00




http://www.circuitcity.com/IMAGE/Promotions/Graphics/012008_finance_lg.gif

You pay:
$599.99

http://www.circuitcity.com/IMAGE/app/r/btn_addtocart_wide.gif (http://www.circuitcity.com/rpsm/OID/163702/QUANTITY/1/cmCatID/ENDECA%2BMODULES%2B%253E%2BTV%2B%2526%2BVIDEO%2B%2 53E%2BTELEVISIONS/rpem/ccd/addToCart.do)

JaxRed
12-28-2006, 11:08 AM
You absolutely want to get one with a built in HD tuner to pick up HD local broadcasts from networks. They are great. Don't buy a CRT. (dead man walking).

RBA, would you recommend one capable of 1080 just to be more future-proof?

Falls City Beer
12-28-2006, 11:15 AM
You absolutely want to get one with a built in HD tuner to pick up HD local broadcasts from networks. They are great.

Without a doubt. The best picture you're going to view on your HDTV are local HD signals. Only DVDs with component cables come close.

GIK
12-28-2006, 11:35 AM
Don't buy a CRT. (dead man walking).

I disagree 100%. You cannot currently match the picture quality of a CRT, especially with standard-def (which TB seems to want). If you have the space for one and don't want/need a picture larger than 34", they cannot be beat.

Do try and find a set with a built-in HD tuner, though, if you don't have/want a HD cable box.

GIK
12-28-2006, 11:37 AM
Without a doubt. The best picture you're going to view on your HDTV are local HD signals. Only DVDs with component cables come close.

Don't forget HD-DVD/Blu-Ray. I'm itching to go grab a player, I'm just worried I'll select the format that eventually goes the way of Betamax.

FutureRedsGM
12-28-2006, 11:43 AM
While all of this tech talk is completely over my head, I have been doing a little research for my own purchase. I think I am sold on this Vizio:

http://reviews.cnet.com/Vizio_L32HDTV/4505-6482_7-31661373.html

It can be bought at Costco for $600 - $700. The CNet review isn't the best that I've read, but the customer reviews are a lot better. I think this is one of the best "values" in HDTVs right now. I'll be using this as a secondary bedroom TV.

FutureRedsGM
12-28-2006, 11:44 AM
Don't forget HD-DVD/Blu-Ray. I'm itching to go grab a player, I'm just worried I'll select the format that eventually goes the way of Betamax.

Still saving up for my PS3 (if I can ever fine one) with built in Blu-Ray player. The Xbox 360 is coming out with an add on HD-DVD player as well.

GIK
12-28-2006, 11:50 AM
The XBOX360 HD-DVD add-on is out (launched in November). I have a 360 so it's definitely the most cost-effective way to go ($199), but it has its limitations (most notably in the sound department; it outputs DD5.1 but not TrueHD audio, ie lossless).

Falls City Beer
12-28-2006, 11:52 AM
Don't forget HD-DVD/Blu-Ray. I'm itching to go grab a player, I'm just worried I'll select the format that eventually goes the way of Betamax.

True. But I'm guessing that the cost of a Beta/VHS player back in the day represented a bigger chunk of the family income than a Blu-Ray--I don't know that, but technology seems in general more affordable nowadays. Plus, it would be cool to have a technological dinosaur, like a TRS-80, lying around in your attic. :)

bengalsown
12-28-2006, 11:53 AM
Plasma-Probably the best picture quality of all the "High Definition" TV's, also the most expensive in most cases. The biggest downfall of a plasma is the have a relatively short life span since the plasma, much like blood in a human, has it's own "life" and will burn out after an average of 8 years as I understand it.

Nah, plasma's will last just as long as any other television technology available today. And unless you buy a 1080p plasma television, the prices are pretty similar.


LCD-Very good quality picture second to only plasma, and to the naked eye probably no different at all. These TV's are a little less expensive in most cases depending on the size you want, if you want to see the picture quality of a LCD screen look no further than a laptop computer, LCD screens are standard with them.

Trailing is pretty common on LCD tv's. And you can't compare the picture quality of LCD in hi-def with that of a laptop screen.



DLP-This is a fairly new player in the high def game, these TV's are actually rear projection which is powered by thousands of tiny little mirrors inside the set. From what I've seen of these they are the best bang for your buck if you want to go high def, they may not "yet" be as sharp as plasma or LCD, but it is also a new technology which is still improving, and will still be a hell of a lot better than any standard def TV set. Probably the best thing about DLP is the fact that it will have the longest life span of the the big three due to it being projection instead of plasma or LCD which will suffer burnout.

Everything I've read about DLP is that the bulbs need replaced very frequently (every 8000 hours, which probably equals about 4 years), to the tune of $400 or so.

you may be able to swing a 30 inch DLP in the 800-1000 dollar price range,

I don't think they make DLP televisions that small.

GIK
12-28-2006, 11:59 AM
True. But I'm guessing that the cost of a Beta/VHS player back in the day represented a bigger chunk of the family income than a Blu-Ray--I don't know that, but technology seems in general more affordable nowadays. Plus, it would be cool to have a technological dinosaur, like a TRS-80, lying around in your attic. :)

Sounds like a man with first-hand experience. :D

I'm sure I'll get one or the other...and soon. I'm not so good with the whole patience thing.

Dom Heffner
12-28-2006, 12:10 PM
Everything I've read about DLP is that the bulbs need replaced very frequently (every 8000 hours, which probably equals about 4 years), to the tune of $400 or so.


Every 4 years is very frequently?

I might be in the minority here, but I don't want to keep the same tv for 8 years. Technology grows leaps and bounds.

paintmered
12-28-2006, 12:18 PM
The XBOX360 HD-DVD add-on is out (launched in November). I have a 360 so it's definitely the most cost-effective way to go ($199), but it has its limitations (most notably in the sound department; it outputs DD5.1 but not TrueHD audio, ie lossless).

Lossless? Really?

I don't know much about how they go about trying to achieve that, but even optical systems have a small amount of loss.

deltachi8
12-28-2006, 12:19 PM
I know little about all this stuff, but did take the dive in November and purchased an Olevia 32" HD LCD monitor and really like it. Paid about $540 delivered through Target.com

RBA
12-28-2006, 01:18 PM
While all of this tech talk is completely over my head, I have been doing a little research for my own purchase. I think I am sold on this Vizio:

http://reviews.cnet.com/Vizio_L32HDTV/4505-6482_7-31661373.html

It can be bought at Costco for $600 - $700. The CNet review isn't the best that I've read, but the customer reviews are a lot better. I think this is one of the best "values" in HDTVs right now. I'll be using this as a secondary bedroom TV.

I have heard/read nothing but good reviews of the Vizio.

And Costco has a great return policy.

LoganBuck
12-28-2006, 01:21 PM
So do people like Vizio and Olevia. They are brands that are very new. What is their story, support, and system like? Olevia has a few 32" models that really interest me.

LoganBuck
12-28-2006, 01:27 PM
RBA your response beat my question. I have seen that Vizio that FutureRedsGM, has and I like it, and have seen it priced as low as $650.

Reds Fanatic
12-28-2006, 01:27 PM
Everything I've read about DLP is that the bulbs need replaced very frequently (every 8000 hours, which probably equals about 4 years), to the tune of $400 or so.

Getting bulbs replaced is one of many reasons why getting the extended service agreements are a good idea. I have a service agreement on my Sony 42" LCD rear projection TV and they will replace the bulbs as part of the service agreement.

bengalsown
12-28-2006, 01:49 PM
Every 4 years is very frequently?

I might be in the minority here, but I don't want to keep the same tv for 8 years. Technology grows leaps and bounds.

4 years is pretty frequent. I don't know anyone who replaces a large TV such as that after 4 years...

Dom Heffner
12-28-2006, 02:07 PM
4 years is pretty frequent. I don't know anyone who replaces a large TV such as that after 4 years...

And I don't know many people who keep their TV for more than 8, so you have to change it once on average. Big deal.

pedro
12-28-2006, 02:13 PM
And I don't know many people who keep their TV for more than 8, so you have to change it once on average. Big deal.

I've had the TV in my basement for 13 years.

Redsfaithful
12-28-2006, 02:19 PM
I bought a Panasonic 42 inch plasma about a month ago, and I love it. It was $999 on Black Friday, but I think they normally can be found for $1300-$1700. I'm guessing that it wouldn't be too hard to find a really good deal in the $800 range with some patience.

I'll second RBA's mention of Fat Wallet, that's where I found the deal for my TV.

bucksfan
12-28-2006, 02:57 PM
I've had the TV in my basement for 13 years.

We keep all of our tvs as long as they actually still deliver a decent (By our lax standards) picture. Our main living room tv is easily 11 yrs old and our kitchen tv is probably older. We have 2 "newer" sets in the bedroom and garage but nothing fancy. I don't know many people who just upgrade their tv soley because of new technology.

This is a great thread as we will certainly be looking to upgrade our living room tv when it inevitably passes on (or when one of the others goes).

RBA
12-28-2006, 03:13 PM
Just live within your budget.

GIK
12-28-2006, 03:16 PM
Sounds like a man with first-hand experience. :D

I'm sure I'll get one or the other...and soon. I'm not so good with the whole patience thing.

Yeah, about that whole patience thing...

I have none.

Picked up the XBOX360 HD-DVD add-on (for $159.99 w/ $40-off coupon at Circuit City). Can't beat that.

http://www.xbox.com/en-US/hardware/x/xbox360hddvdplayer/

GIK
12-28-2006, 03:27 PM
But back to TB...

TB, I definitely agree with RBA to live within your budget. I'd take it a step further and say to "live within your signal". Again, if you do not plan to order digital cable, HDTV service, etc, then a HDTV that does not play standard definition content well (ie, most every plasma, LCD, LCOS, DLP, etc that has a native high definition resolution) is going to be worse than what you had. I demo'd, in home, both a 42" Samsung 720p HD plasma and a 50" Sony 1080p HD LCOS rear projection TV and they both let me down - big time - for standard def ("regular" TV) content. Now, mind you, I rarely watch SDTV so this didn't bug me too much but my wife watches A LOT of standard definition (480i) television. Our Sony 30" HD CRT does a FABULOUS job with SD content. If the majority of your TV viewing is NOT hi-def, I (again) recommend purchasing a tube.

:)

Dom Heffner
12-28-2006, 06:40 PM
I've had the TV in my basement for 13 years.

But it probably started out as your main tv, right? Then as you got better ones, it moved downstairs, maybe?

I've had the tv in my spare bedroom for 11 years but I would never make it my main one. Good gosh, tvs have come a long way.

pedro
12-28-2006, 06:54 PM
But it probably started out as your main tv, right? Then as you got better ones, it moved downstairs, maybe?

I've had the tv in my spare bedroom for 11 years but I would never make it my main one. Good gosh, tvs have come a long way.

quite correct. but I am cheap when it comes to TV's. I bought a new 27" traditional one this year for $300. It suits my needs fine as the simpsons don't really look better on high res.

Dom Heffner
12-28-2006, 07:03 PM
quite correct. but I am cheap when it comes to TV's. I bought a new 27" traditional one this year for $300. It suits my needs fine as the simpsons don't really look better on high res.

Wow. I'm a technology nerd. I know I don't need to watch the Tonight Show in Hi-Def, but man, it sure looks great, so why not spring for it?

I'm awful. And the poorer for it. :)

pedro
12-28-2006, 07:15 PM
Wow. I'm a technology nerd. I know I don't need to watch the Tonight Show in Hi-Def, but man, it sure looks great, so why not spring for it?

I'm awful. And the poorer for it. :)


I'd just rather spend my money on other stuff. right now I'm getting my bathroom and kitchen re-modeled. then the house is going to be re-sided. then i'm going to buy a new bike and maybe trade my car in and then maybe get some skiis.

tv is pretty low on the totem pole (although it's not like I don't watch it)

Razor Shines
12-28-2006, 07:42 PM
I'd just rather spend my money on other stuff. right now I'm getting my bathroom and kitchen re-modeled. then the house is going to be re-sided. then i'm going to buy a new bike and maybe trade my car in and then maybe get some skiis.

tv is pretty low on the totem pole (although it's not like I don't watch it)

Is the weather that bad in Portland these days?

pedro
12-28-2006, 08:16 PM
Is the weather that bad in Portland these days?

not yet. :)

TeamBoone
12-28-2006, 10:18 PM
I started looking at some today but still haven't made any kind of final decision. Once I do, and see what I want in a store, I'll check out the same models on the websites RBA recommended (thanks RBA).

If I go LCD HDTV I think I've decided on either 37" or 42". Initially, I thought 32" was big enough, but after really looking at them, I don't think so. My living room is fairly large and the sofa is 10-12 feet away from the TV.

I just HATE the weight of CRT TVs. My 32" Sony took 3 men and a gorilla to move (I have no men nor any gorillas at my disposal). And I just hate to keep bothering my male neighbors to do the heavy lifting. Plus, if CRT TVs really are being phased out, I don't want to be left empty handed when cable goes completely digital. I keep my TVs until they die and don't want to have to replace it anytime soon.

Anyway, this is what I read on the box of the one that caught my eye today (the picture looked really good); let me know what you think:

Magnavox 37" LCD HDTV: $997 (regularly $1394).

- receives digital, analog, and aired local signals
- HDMI
- max 720 p display capability
- 1366x768 resolution
- 1200:1 constant ratio (whatever that means)

I also looked closely at a Symphonic 32" with a built-in digital tuner (don't know if the one above had one or not). Again, the picture looked really nice but I've not seen that anyone has recommended this brand and you guys know a whole lot more than I do.

Every single one that I saw received local digital signals.

This is just a horrible dilemma for me. I stood there like a deer caught in the headlights and most of the things I read here and thought I'd committed to memory just went right out of my head!

macro
12-28-2006, 11:12 PM
And I don't know many people who keep their TV for more than 8, so you have to change it once on average. Big deal.

We're using two dinosaurs. The living room TV is a 27" Sanyo from 1993 and the bedroom TV is a 26" JVC from 1990! I never saw the need to replace these CRTs with the projection TVs of the 90s and early 00s, as I always considered the pictures on those things to be inferior to what I had. Size didn't really matter to me, so I just kept these two chugging along.

I bought the 1990 JVC at CC for $750. That was quite a bit for a TV in those days. It had the latest technology: a square-cornered screen that was black instead of dark gray, and stereo AV inputs and outputs so that you could connect it to your home stereo. My friends were really impressed that I had my TV sound booming out of floor speakers with 10" woofers! :laugh: Strangely enough, the 1993 Sanyo that cost $300 at Walmart has a much better picture than the JVC, and has had for several years. It still looks great, but the lure of HD Widescreen is beginning to be too great to ignore.

The same night that I bought the TV, I plunked down $400 for a Toshiba stereo VCR, which again was cutting edge (still using it to capture old VHS tapes into the PC for burning onto DVDs). Add the $200 TV cart and tax and I was about $1400 lighter in the wallet as I made my way home to my new apartment. That apartment was the place of choice for watching the 1990 World Series with my friends! Great memories!

RBA
12-28-2006, 11:44 PM
Office Depot is having a sale on all their 42" Plasma for $999. Find the same model at Circuit City and do a pricematch at the 125 percent and you got a great deal.

http://officedepot.shoplocal.com/officedepot/default.aspx?action=detail&flashbrowse=y&storeid=2279556&rapid=355739&pagenumber=1&listingid=-2093887831&ref=%2fofficedepot%2fdefault.aspx%3faction%3dbrows epageflash%26storeid%3d2279556%26pagenumber%3d1%26 rapid%3d355739%26prvid%3dofficedepot-061228-r

Falls City Beer
12-29-2006, 12:02 AM
This is just a horrible dilemma for me. I stood there like a deer caught in the headlights and most of the things I read here and thought I'd committed to memory just went right out of my head!

Don't be ashamed to make a list and bring it with you. I've got occasional swiss cheese brain, so I have to. If you feel the guy at the store's giving you the runaround or the bait-and-switch, say sayanora. But now that most places don't work on commission, most people tend to be more honest with you than at times in the past.


And if you don't know exactly what he/she's talking about, pretend as though you do....

I think the key is basically knowing three things: 1. your price range (be honest with yourself) 2. the quality of picture--you don't have to be a rocket scientist--you know what looks good to you. 3. the reliability and support of the company making the TV.

My wife and I just purchased an Olevia 27" screen (I think Phillips may actually produce the LCD screens for the Olevia company) for $475 at Circuit City on Black Saturday, a progressive scan DVD player, component cables, and we're in hog heaven. But your mileage may vary. I'm not a tech geek; I'm a bargain hunter who knows what I want in the hunt.

JaxRed
12-29-2006, 12:09 AM
I would still get one that has 1080 rather than 720. You won't have to pay more.

Jpup
12-29-2006, 12:10 AM
I started looking at some today but still haven't made any kind of final decision. Once I do, and see what I want in a store, I'll check out the same models on the websites RBA recommended (thanks RBA).

If I go LCD HDTV I think I've decided on either 37" or 42". Initially, I thought 32" was big enough, but after really looking at them, I don't think so. My living room is fairly large and the sofa is 10-12 feet away from the TV.

I just HATE the weight of CRT TVs. My 32" Sony took 3 men and a gorilla to move (I have no men nor any gorillas at my disposal). And I just hate to keep bothering my male neighbors to do the heavy lifting. Plus, if CRT TVs really are being phased out, I don't want to be left empty handed when cable goes completely digital. I keep my TVs until they die and don't want to have to replace it anytime soon.

Anyway, this is what I read on the box of the one that caught my eye today (the picture looked really good); let me know what you think:

Magnavox 37" LCD HDTV: $997 (regularly $1394).

- receives digital, analog, and aired local signals
- HDMI
- max 720 p display capability
- 1366x768 resolution
- 1200:1 constant ratio (whatever that means)

I also looked closely at a Symphonic 32" with a built-in digital tuner (don't know if the one above had one or not). Again, the picture looked really nice but I've not seen that anyone has recommended this brand and you guys know a whole lot more than I do.

Every single one that I saw received local digital signals.

This is just a horrible dilemma for me. I stood there like a deer caught in the headlights and most of the things I read here and thought I'd committed to memory just went right out of my head!

From 10-12 ft. you are going to need, at least, a 50" TV if you are expecting to ever get HDTV. 37" is way too small from that distance. If you are going to strictly stick with SD, you will be fine. I don't know if you looked at the link that I gave you, but it will help you understand all of these things. CNET is a great resource for new tech. If you really want to learn the basics and get the most out of your TV, you should check it out.

I would also not reccommend getting a Magnavox or Symphonic. I would stick with either Sony, Samsung, Panasonic, LG, or Hitachi. avsforum.com is another invaluabe resource when considering all things tech. If you go to a big box retailer such as best buy, remember that you don't have to pay the sticker price. You can save hundreds of dollars if you go with a higher end set. Also remember that the picture in the store is nothing like what you will see when you get it home.

Falls City Beer
12-29-2006, 12:15 AM
Also remember that the picture in the store is nothing like what you will see when you get it home.

That's not entirely true. It's just that stores amp the brightness up.

GIK
12-29-2006, 12:21 AM
Plus, if CRT TVs really are being phased out, I don't want to be left empty handed when cable goes completely digital. I keep my TVs until they die and don't want to have to replace it anytime soon.

I completely understand your reasons for wanting a plasma/LCD in terms of weight, but do not think for one moment that a CRT will be worthless in a few years. As long as you pick a HD unit, it's "future proof". That being said, enjoy whatever you get! :)

Jpup
12-29-2006, 12:25 AM
That's not entirely true. It's just that stores amp the brightness up.

the stores don't do anything. they ship from the manufacturers that way. the picture will look much, much better when you get it dialed in at home.

macro
12-29-2006, 12:45 AM
I would still get one that has 1080 rather than 720. You won't have to pay more.

Jax, are you referring to one particular set or across the board? Because 1080p LCDs run about $1000 more than 720s of the same size and brand.

TeamBoone
12-29-2006, 01:12 AM
I completely understand your reasons for wanting a plasma/LCD in terms of weight, but do not think for one moment that a CRT will be worthless in a few years. As long as you pick a HD unit, it's "future proof". That being said, enjoy whatever you get! :)

Here I go again being stupid.

Are you saying that if I get a CRT TV that all I really need to keep in mind is that it should be High Definition?

Razor Shines
12-29-2006, 02:16 AM
the stores don't do anything. they ship from the manufacturers that way. the picture will look much, much better when you get it dialed in at home.

Actually FCB is right, amping up the brightness is exactly what they do. I was doing some work for Panasonic in November I traveled to most of the Best Buy stores in Indiana and one of the things I did was make sure their TVs had the brightness turned up to the correct setting, which was much higher than most people watch it at.

Jpup
12-29-2006, 05:11 AM
Actually FCB is right, amping up the brightness is exactly what they do. I was doing some work for Panasonic in November I traveled to most of the Best Buy stores in Indiana and one of the things I did was make sure their TVs had the brightness turned up to the correct setting, which was much higher than most people watch it at.

I am not disagreeing that the brightness is turned up, I know that. The manufacturers are the ones who turn it up. Just like you stated that you went and around and made sure they were turned up. If you get a brand new TV out of the box, the brightness will also be unusually high. The stores just take them out of the box and turn them on the default factory settings. BTW, it makes them look terrible. Anyone who could watch a TV on factory settings has some serious sight issues.

Playadlc
12-29-2006, 06:06 AM
I just bought a Samsung 1080p 50" DLP and I am having some serious calibrating problems.

Are there any guides out there that will get your TV calibrated properly?

Jpup
12-29-2006, 07:41 AM
I just bought a Samsung 1080p 50" DLP and I am having some serious calibrating problems.

Are there any guides out there that will get your TV calibrated properly?

what do you mean by calibrating problems? Explain and maybe I can help. If you are just talking about the basic settings on the TV, then you should pick up the Avia Guide to Home Theatre. That is what I use and it did wonders for basic adjustments. If you are have more serious issues such as geometry issues, bowing, etc. then I would just take the television back to where you got it from since you said that you just bought it. There is also the professional calibration route that you could go, but that could cost upwards of 400 dollars.

http://www.amazon.com/AVIA-Guide-Home-Theater/dp/630551982X/sr=8-1/qid=1167396151/ref=pd_bbs_sr_1/102-7083572-3736951?ie=UTF8&s=dvd

Digital Video Essentials is another calibration disk that is out there and has gotten great reviews but it's said to be much harder to use. I don't know as I don't have it. The HD-DVD version is coming out at the end of January if you have a hd-dvd player, you might want to go that route.

Just explain your situation and I'm sure I can help you out. Check out avsforum and look for you specific model number to see if your problems are common or not.

JaxRed
12-29-2006, 08:54 AM
Jax, are you referring to one particular set or across the board? Because 1080p LCDs run about $1000 more than 720s of the same size and brand.

I wasn't referring to 1080p, but if you are investing $1,000 in a set, might as well get one that takes full advantage of Hi Def.

"In North America, Fox, My Network TV (also owned by Fox), ABC, and ESPN (ABC and ESPN are both owned by Disney) currently broadcast 720p content. NBC, Universal HD (both owned by General Electric), CBS, The CW, HBO, Showtime, Starz!, INHD, HDNet ,TNT, and Discovery HD Theater currently broadcast 1080i content."

She's looking at a 37" for $1,000 that does 720 max, here's a 37" that does 1080i for same price.

http://www.walmart.com/catalog/product.do?product_id=4529487

GIK
12-29-2006, 09:42 AM
Here I go again being stupid.

Are you saying that if I get a CRT TV that all I really need to keep in mind is that it should be High Definition?

Yes.

For example, any of the following (CRT, HDTV, digital, widescreen):

http://www.bestbuy.com/site/olspage.jsp?skuId=7685089&type=product&productCategoryId=pcmcat95100050007&id=1134703573897
http://www.bestbuy.com/site/olspage.jsp?skuId=7716769&type=product&productCategoryId=pcmcat95100050007&id=1138087675171
http://www.bestbuy.com/site/olspage.jsp?skuId=7908062&type=product&productCategoryId=pcmcat95100050007&id=1149207784284
http://www.bestbuy.com/site/olspage.jsp?skuId=7705799&type=product&productCategoryId=pcmcat95100050007&id=1138087658070

They also ALL have built-in HDTV tuners (ie, free HDTV from local over-the-air stations).

I still say that if you can deal with the 'bulk', a HDTV CRT is your best bet with what you plan to do with it.

RBA
12-29-2006, 09:55 AM
I bought a CRT widescreen HDTV last year. If I had to do it over again, I wouldn't. Reasons:

1. It weighs a ton.
2. I move a lot, since I'm military.
3. Some base/post housing is cramp. And it takes up a lot of space from the wall.
4. It adds to the allowable weight when I move.
5. I have a wife who likes to move things around every two months.
6. It weighs a ton.

GIK
12-29-2006, 09:55 AM
I wasn't referring to 1080p, but if you are investing $1,000 in a set, might as well get one that takes full advantage of Hi Def.

"In North America, Fox, My Network TV (also owned by Fox), ABC, and ESPN (ABC and ESPN are both owned by Disney) currently broadcast 720p content. NBC, Universal HD (both owned by General Electric), CBS, The CW, HBO, Showtime, Starz!, INHD, HDNet ,TNT, and Discovery HD Theater currently broadcast 1080i content."

She's looking at a 37" for $1,000 that does 720 max, here's a 37" that does 1080i for same price.

http://www.walmart.com/catalog/product.do?product_id=4529487

You aren't going to see much difference between 1080i and 720p. You will notice a difference with 1080p.

1080i, yes, technically displays more pixels - but not as many as you'd think because it is interlaced and not progressive (1.037 million for 1080i, .922 million for 720p and 2.074 million for 1080p).

720p, because it's progressive, will resolve artifacts better than 1080i during motion sequences. You'd really only see any sort of difference during a stationary shot with 1080i.

Red Leader
12-29-2006, 09:58 AM
I've had several people tell me that the Blu-Ray players will lose the battle in HD DVD components. They said that the Blu-Ray image isn't as sharp as a regular HD DVD player and that the Blu-Ray disks are going to be $10-25 more expensive than the HD DVD disks to purchase.

I'm not relaying the gospel here, but just info I was told from some people in the industry. Makes sense to me. Why would you choose a player that has a worse image and pay $10-25 more for each disk?

GIK
12-29-2006, 10:01 AM
I bought a CRT widescreen HDTV last year. If I had to do it over again, I wouldn't. Reasons:

1. It weighs a ton.
2. I move a lot, since I'm military.
3. Some base/post housing is cramp. And it takes up a lot of space from the wall.
4. It adds to the allowable weight when I move.
5. I have a wife who likes to move things around every two months.
6. It weighs a ton.

Great point.

TB, if you plan to move the TV around at all then a CRT is probably not your best bet. However, if it will be set up and then sit for years then I wouldn't discount it.

I also have no problem moving my 150-lb CRT. RBA must be getting old. :evil:

RBA
12-29-2006, 10:04 AM
You aren't going to see much difference between 1080i and 720p. You will notice a difference with 1080p.


720p, because it's progressive, will resolve artifacts better than 1080i during motion sequences. You'd really only see any sort of difference during a stationary shot with 1080i.


This is why ABC/ESPN decided on the 720P because sports show up better on it.

GIK
12-29-2006, 10:09 AM
I've had several people tell me that the Blu-Ray players will lose the battle in HD DVD components. They said that the Blu-Ray image isn't as sharp as a regular HD DVD player and that the Blu-Ray disks are going to be $10-25 more expensive than the HD DVD disks to purchase.

I'm not relaying the gospel here, but just info I was told from some people in the industry. Makes sense to me. Why would you choose a player that has a worse image and pay $10-25 more for each disk?

Blu-Ray has been fighting an uphill battle this first year and, yup, the image between movie titles has not been as consistent as HD-DVD. However, movies being produced today show no distinct advantage in PQ between the two. That being said, Blu-Ray has A LOT more industry support than HD-DVD does.

For example, here's the movie studio breakdown:

Blu-Ray exclusive:
1. Sony
2. Disney
3. Fox
4. MGM
5. Lions Gate

HD-DVD exclusive:
1. Universal
2. Weinstein

The rest support both formats. Blu-Ray, as you can see, has a huge edge on titles right now, and if they play their cards right, have an excellent shot at being the leader. The PS3 should also aid Blu-Ray.

*btw, I have HD-DVD (but may purchase a Blu-Ray player shortly). CES will, hopefully, offer a lot of insight as to where this fight is heading.

RBA
12-29-2006, 10:10 AM
I also have no problem moving my 150-lb CRT. RBA must be getting old. :evil:

Actually, it's in the bedroom and it sits about 5 feet up, so we can see it from the bed. It just getting it up that last foot that kills me.

Red Leader
12-29-2006, 10:22 AM
Blu-Ray has been fighting an uphill battle this first year and, yup, the image between movie titles has not been as consistent as HD-DVD. However, movies being produced today show no distinct advantage in PQ between the two. That being said, Blu-Ray has A LOT more industry support than HD-DVD does.

For example, here's the movie studio breakdown:

Blu-Ray exclusive:
1. Sony
2. Disney
3. Fox
4. MGM
5. Lions Gate

HD-DVD exclusive:
1. Universal
2. Weinstein

The rest support both formats. Blu-Ray, as you can see, has a huge edge on titles right now, and if they play their cards right, have an excellent shot at being the leader. The PS3 should also aid Blu-Ray.

*btw, I have HD-DVD (but may purchase a Blu-Ray player shortly). CES will, hopefully, offer a lot of insight as to where this fight is heading.

Thanks for the info, GIK.

Here is where I am. I'm going to finish our basement starting the first of the year. Hope to have it completely finished by the start of MLB season. I want to add a new HDTV, a DVD player and a new surround sound receiver for the basement. So, my purchasing will all occur in early spring. I'm hoping to learn a bunch about TV's, HD DVD players and other stuff by the time I'm ready to purchase. I'm also hoping that the battle between HD DVD and Blu-Ray will be decided by then. That gets me to another problem. I wanted to buy a video game console. At first, I thought it'd be smart to buy a PS3 with a Blu-Ray DVD already installed (kill two birds with one stone). The problem? I have two younger kids (7 and 3) and I've heard that the Nintendo Wii is the better option for them. My oldest has a Nintendo GameCube now and loves the games he has. They are compatible with the Wii. The problem is, if I get them a Wii, I still need to buy an HD DVD player as the Wii does not come with one. Trying to be somewhat fiscally responsible in all of these purchases, and at this time, it just doesn't look like there's a good way to do it.

So right now here's what I have in mind (and all or most of this will probably change by the time I buy):

Sony receiver with 5.1 digital surround.
I already own Harmon-Kardin surround speakers with subwoofer that I will move to the basement. I really like those speakers.
Nintendo Wii for video game console (GameCube games will play on it, so no re-buying).
Sony Grand Wega 50" Rear Projection 1080p TV.
Sony HD DVD player?

I think that's the way I'm leaning right now. As I said, that may change, though.

GIK
12-29-2006, 10:27 AM
That'd be a Sony Blu-Ray player. ;)

Toshiba (and RCA but it's just a re-badged Toshiba) only makes HD-DVD players.

If you're thinking Blu-Ray, the PS3 is *right now* the best option for a player. I may buy the 20GB version for just this purpose. The cheapest Blu-Ray player, after the PS3, is the Samsung at $799. HD-DVD players start at $499 (if you have an XBOX360 the HD-DVD add-on drive is $199).

Again, I'm really hoping that CES (http://www.cesweb.org) has a lot of great announcements re: both formats.

macro
12-29-2006, 10:28 AM
I wasn't referring to 1080p, but if you are investing $1,000 in a set, might as well get one that takes full advantage of Hi Def.

"In North America, Fox, My Network TV (also owned by Fox), ABC, and ESPN (ABC and ESPN are both owned by Disney) currently broadcast 720p content. NBC, Universal HD (both owned by General Electric), CBS, The CW, HBO, Showtime, Starz!, INHD, HDNet ,TNT, and Discovery HD Theater currently broadcast 1080i content."

She's looking at a 37" for $1,000 that does 720 max, here's a 37" that does 1080i for same price.

http://www.walmart.com/catalog/product.do?product_id=4529487

Oops, yep, I forgot about the 1080i / 1080p thing. My comment was based on comparisons of 46"+ LCD Flats, 720p vs 1080p.

RBA
12-29-2006, 10:28 AM
Red Leader, you might want to think about a projector for your basement. If it doesn't get any light, a Projector would work well and some people enjoy the cinema-like movie experience they provide. See AVSForums for more info.

Red Leader
12-29-2006, 10:47 AM
Red Leader, you might want to think about a projector for your basement. If it doesn't get any light, a Projector would work well and some people enjoy the cinema-like movie experience they provide. See AVSForums for more info.

Thanks, RBA. I've read posts by you and Johnny Footstool about projectors in other threads. It is something I'll have to consider. I didn't realize that they were cost competitive with HDTV's and could display in 1080p HD. Out basement has two glass block windows that are about 10" high and 30" wide. That's the only light that gets into the basement. Surprisingly, it seems well lit during the day because the side of the house that those windows are on is the side of the house that gets the most sunlight. When I re-do the basement I'll frame those windows and probably hang curtains or some window dressing where I could block out the light if I wanted to. That would open up the option for getting a projector. I've always thought that projectors were pretty cool.

How much would you say you spent on your projector and a home made screen for it? Are components (video game, DVD, home theatre) as easy to hook up to projectors?

Red Leader
12-29-2006, 10:51 AM
The good thing (at least to me) is that at this point I have all options open to me. I'm not limited by amount of light in the room, space, or anything else. I have the whole enchilada available to me to choose from on everything, from TV to projectors, to video game console, to DVD player, to receiver. I can choose anything in anyone of those categories pretty much and not have limitations. So I got that going for me, which is nice.

GIK
12-29-2006, 11:01 AM
My newest projector ran about $700 and the screen that I built cost under $100 (104" 16:9 diagonal).

There are excellent deals to be had right now on 720p projectors (Optoma HD70, Mitsubishi HD1000U) for under $1000. A 1080p projector will set you back $4K+.

gonelong
12-29-2006, 11:08 AM
My newest projector ran about $700 and the screen that I built cost under $100 (104" 16:9 diagonal).


What did you build your screen with?

I built mine with a white 4'x8' panel (Polywall) but I am considering experimenting with gray screens.

GL

Dom Heffner
12-29-2006, 11:11 AM
A 1080p projector will set you back $4K+.

I saw a brand new Sony 1080p on ebay for $3500, which is a steal considering they retail over $5000.

Red Leader
12-29-2006, 11:11 AM
This may sound like a truly dumb question, but I just looked up that Mitsubishi projector (I have had, or my Dad has had a Mitsubishi big screen TV since 1980, and we like them) and it says there is no audio output or audio input. Ok, how do you get sound?

GIK
12-29-2006, 11:13 AM
HDMI/component to receiver.

bengalsown
12-29-2006, 11:15 AM
...

GIK
12-29-2006, 11:15 AM
What did you build your screen with?

I built mine with a white 4'x8' panel (Polywall) but I am considering experimenting with gray screens.

GL

I built a frame out of 1"x3"s and stretched projector screen material over it. I then trimmed the screen and stretched black velveteen over it to create a frame. Looks awesome. I'll take a few photos of my updated room (now with stadium seating!) and post them. :)

Red Leader
12-29-2006, 11:19 AM
HDMI/component to receiver.

Ahhh. I get it now. Thanks.

That just seemed odd to me that there was no audio output on the actual projector.

gonelong
12-29-2006, 11:27 AM
I built a frame out of 1"x3"s and stretched projector screen material over it. I then trimmed the screen and stretched black velveteen over it to create a frame. Looks awesome. I'll take a few photos of my updated room (now with stadium seating!) and post them. :)

Cool, amazing how nice of a screen you can build in afternoon while saving yourself hundreds of dollars in the process.

I wish I had taken the time to use velveteen on my frame, I painted my 1x3s with a flat black paint. I am probably the only one to notice, but occasionally you can see the overspill on the 1x3s.

Is the material you used black out cloth or something else?

I sort of have the DIY bug. I have held up a good 50 samples of different things trying to see what might be suitable for a screen, both indoors and outdoors.

GL

GIK
12-29-2006, 12:00 PM
I used Black Velveteen from JoAnn (looks great!).

Here are some pictures of my basement "theater". It was really quite inexpensive to put together and A LOT of fun. Please excuse my so-so digicam shots. :)

http://img179.imageshack.us/img179/9590/movroom1pv9.th.jpg (http://img179.imageshack.us/my.php?image=movroom1pv9.jpg)
http://img123.imageshack.us/img123/2844/movroom2yo7.th.jpg (http://img123.imageshack.us/my.php?image=movroom2yo7.jpg)
http://img123.imageshack.us/img123/1041/movroom3qc4.th.jpg (http://img123.imageshack.us/my.php?image=movroom3qc4.jpg)
http://img294.imageshack.us/img294/7500/movroom4me9.th.jpg (http://img294.imageshack.us/my.php?image=movroom4me9.jpg)
http://img294.imageshack.us/img294/9332/movroom5co1.th.jpg (http://img294.imageshack.us/my.php?image=movroom5co1.jpg)

TeamCasey
12-29-2006, 12:38 PM
4 pages ...... remember the days when you could just run out and buy a TV?

vaticanplum
12-29-2006, 12:43 PM
This thread has been a painful reminder that I will always be poor.

TeamCasey
12-29-2006, 12:45 PM
I just HATE the weight of CRT TVs. My 32" Sony took 3 men and a gorilla to move (I have no men nor any gorillas at my disposal). And I just hate to keep bothering my male neighbors to do the heavy lifting.


Hey! Ethyl and Maudie helped heave that sucker into the car! :)

pedro
12-29-2006, 12:50 PM
This thread has been a painful reminder that I will always be poor.

I was dirt poor until I was 30. Things can change.

KronoRed
12-29-2006, 12:52 PM
This thread has been a painful reminder that I will always be poor.

Not painful to me, look at the all the terminology you have to know to buy a freaking TV! my head would explode :explode:

JaxRed
12-29-2006, 01:05 PM
GIK, here's a stupid question for you. In your home theater...... where's the beef? I didn't see the projector, sound system, etc.

GIK
12-29-2006, 01:16 PM
Check picture #3. The projector is ceiling mounted and you can make out the bottom of it at the top of the pic. Also, all of the electronics are in the cabinet on the left side of the picture. The sub you cannot see, but you can make out a few of the surround speakers in pictures #1, 2 and 3.
:thumbup:

TeamBoone
12-29-2006, 03:05 PM
Hey! Ethyl and Maudie helped heave that sucker into the car! :)

I was talking about at the other end. Three guys and a dolly to get it into the shop.

Ltlabner
01-02-2007, 11:36 AM
Mrs. Ltlabner and I decided on the LG 30" super slim HDTV (CRT).

It was on sale for $579.99 and we got them down to $500 even for it. It's perfect. It's slim so it doesn't take up 1/2 the family room, the picture is fantastic and we are ready for HD. Because of it's size we were able to move it in the house by ourselves (sans army of tough guys). The useable screen is 26" x 15" so it's great for wide screen movies. I've checked out the few HD available channels and the picuture is pretty amazing...even just the plain old networks and TNT.

Spent most of my vacation watching TV and movies and the picture is pretty amazing. The sound is nice too.

We don't watch tons and tons of movies and have no desire for digital cable so we decided a CRT was the way to go.

http://www.bestbuy.com/site/olspage.jsp?skuId=7685089&st=lg+super+slim&lp=4&type=product&cp=1&id=1134703573897

Yachtzee
01-02-2007, 11:57 AM
I won't be able to afford an HDTV for quite a few years, but if I were to make such a big ticket purchase, a subscription to the Consumer Reports website (http://www.consumerreports.org) might be a reasonable expense considering the amount of information they give you. They have a great TV buying guide.

Red Leader
01-03-2007, 09:48 AM
Here's some more information on different TV options from Crutchfield, a leading audio / video retailer:

http://www.crutchfield.com/S-WOWZznlccq5/homepage/community/employees/20061229_tvtypes.html

FutureRedsGM
01-04-2007, 10:15 AM
Couple good articles on Yahoo this morning:

http://tech.yahoo.com/blogs/raskin/6813 - about energy consumption

http://tech.yahoo.com/blog/raskin/6816 - plasma vs. LCD energy

http://tech.yahoo.com/rc/televisions/110 - basic buying guide

paintmered
01-22-2007, 10:09 AM
Here's a really good buyers guide:

http://www.denguru.com/2007/01/22/hdtv-buyers-guide/index.html

IslandRed
01-30-2007, 12:32 AM
Just thought I'd tack onto this thread, since I used the pre-Super Bowl sales as an excuse to go shopping... I bought a Westinghouse W4207 at Best Buy today. It's a 42" LCD HD monitor, on sale for $999. It's not 1080p and doesn't have the very best picture and it doesn't have a built-in tuner, but I can live with those things. (We're upgrading to digital cable so we'll have the tuner/DVR box.) The family room at our house has large southern-facing windows so we chose LCD over plasma due to glare issues. I also tossed an upconverting DVD player onto the stack, that supposedly makes standard-definition DVDs look better on an HD screen.

It'll probably be Friday before I get around to setting it up, and the cable upgrade is set for Saturday. I'll let you know if I learn anything new then.

TeamBoone
01-30-2007, 08:58 PM
I wasn't referring to 1080p, but if you are investing $1,000 in a set, might as well get one that takes full advantage of Hi Def.

"In North America, Fox, My Network TV (also owned by Fox), ABC, and ESPN (ABC and ESPN are both owned by Disney) currently broadcast 720p content. NBC, Universal HD (both owned by General Electric), CBS, The CW, HBO, Showtime, Starz!, INHD, HDNet ,TNT, and Discovery HD Theater currently broadcast 1080i content."

She's looking at a 37" for $1,000 that does 720 max, here's a 37" that does 1080i for same price.

http://www.walmart.com/catalog/product.do?product_id=4529487

I looked at this tv in the store today and would have bought it if it hadn't been out of stock (go figure).

As luck would have it, however, it ended up being my lucky day. After looking at LCD's in Kmart, Walmart, Best Buy, and HHGregg... I didn't buy anything. Instead, I came home and did some research.

Customer reviews on the above Polaroid model were very good, until it came to the sound. Not one person who posted a review had anything good to say about the sound. None were that concerned, as they all have surround sound (I don't, and won't until I can afford wireless). Also, I believe someone said it only has one HDMI input and he wanted two so I'm guessing that I probably would too (is that really important?). So, anyway, I guess I'm glad it was out of stock.

Then I decided to re-read this thread. After two months of browsing (in the store and on the net), a lot of the stuff written here isn't so Greek to me anymore.

Something that I must have missed the first time through actually jumped off the pages at me this time... regular cable looks like crap on an LCD. Thus, I'm truly wasting my time shopping for an LCD. Instead, I should probbly be looking at some "slim-fit" CRT television with an HD tuner.

Please, someone correct me if I'm wrong.

Thanks so much to all of you.

Dom Heffner
01-30-2007, 09:04 PM
one HDMI input and he wanted two so I'm guessing that I probably would too

HDMI cables supposedly get you a better picture than standard cables. I've tried to see if I can tell the difference, but it's pretty tough.

You'll want two HDMI ports if you are hooking up more than one HD component to your television. I have a PS3 and Hi-Def cable, so for me I need the two ports. You probably would, too, eventually.


Something that I must have missed the first time through actually jumped off the pages at me this time... regular cable looks like crap on an LCD.

I think it depends on the cable provider and your location. I had Bright House in my old house and my LCD looked great. I moved to this house and it looked like crap until I got Verizon cable and wow, it looks so good that it's hard to tell the difference between Hi-Def and the standard channels (excpet for the National Geographic and Discover channels- you can tell right away on those).

I have an LCD and love it. No streaks when someone throws a football, I can leave it on all day and not worry about burning images.

I have a plasma in the bedroom and the picture on that is great, but I don't like to worry about channels that have the hard logos on the bottom of the screen.

LoganBuck
01-30-2007, 10:25 PM
I looked at this tv in the store today and would have bought it if it hadn't been out of stock (go figure).

As luck would have it, however, it ended up being my lucky day. After looking at LCD's in Kmart, Walmart, Best Buy, and HHGregg... I didn't buy anything. Instead, I came home and did some research.

Customer reviews on the above Polaroid model were very good, until it came to the sound. Not one person who posted a review had anything good to say about the sound. None were that concerned, as they all have surround sound (I don't, and won't until I can afford wireless). Also, I believe someone said it only has one HDMI input and he wanted two so I'm guessing that I probably would too (is that really important?). So, anyway, I guess I'm glad it was out of stock.

Then I decided to re-read this thread. After two months of browsing (in the store and on the net), a lot of the stuff written here isn't so Greek to me anymore.

Something that I must have missed the first time through actually jumped off the pages at me this time... regular cable looks like crap on an LCD. Thus, I'm truly wasting my time shopping for an LCD. Instead, I should probbly be looking at some "slim-fit" CRT television with an HD tuner.

Please, someone correct me if I'm wrong.

Thanks so much to all of you.

I have been looking at the slimfits as well, the reviews on their mechanical quality are pretty spotty over at avs.com. Seems like they have lots of problems. RBA do you have any thoughts on these LG or Samsung models?

Yachtzee
01-30-2007, 11:15 PM
Here's a question for you technofiles out there. Is it true that you shouldn't buy a TV at 1080 res. if it's less than 37 inches? I'm not currently in the market for an HDTV, but I've heard that while the higher resolution 1080 sets are the way to go for large TVs, there's no point in getting a 1080 set if you're buying anything less than 37 inches because you can't really see the difference with smaller screens. Whenever I finally find the money to buy a new TV, I will likely purchase a smaller set (30-32 inches) just because of the way our family room is situated. Our couch is too close to where the TV sits for a large screen, and from what I've seen, it's important to match screen size to the distance between you and the TV.

gonelong
01-31-2007, 10:25 AM
Something that I must have missed the first time through actually jumped off the pages at me this time... regular cable looks like crap on an LCD. Thus, I'm truly wasting my time shopping for an LCD. Instead, I should probbly be looking at some "slim-fit" CRT television with an HD tuner.


Many times this is simply a problem with your signal strength. I had the cable guy come out when my HD was consitantly pixelating. He put a booster/amplifier on the cable and VIOLA, perfect HD. It took me 2 or 3 days to notice that my non-HD channels were significantly better as well. I had a better picture on ALL my TVs, HD or not.

They put mine on for free, but I'd not hesitate to buy my own the next time. I'd never go without a booster/amplifier again.

GL

Dom Heffner
01-31-2007, 11:06 AM
VIOLA

Didn't he pitch for the Twins?

gonelong
01-31-2007, 12:23 PM
Didn't he pitch for the Twins?

To be Frank, yes.

Sorry, I had an uncle that used to say Viola (Vee-O-la) instead of walah or however that is spelled. As kids we thought this was pretty funny and it'll slip out of my mouth/keyboard once or twice a year.

GL

LawFive
07-14-2007, 11:41 AM
I decided to celebrate my new job by going out last night and purchasing a Hitachi 42 1080I plasma. I've had my sights on a HD set for a couple of years now, and decided to pull the trigger. You only live once, right? It gets delivered tomorrow. Can't wait! Anyone have any setup/initiation/calibration problems or tips? Some threads over on the AVS Forum are saying that as long as you're careful, there's no need to go play the initiation DVD's for the first 100 hours anymore.

macro
07-14-2007, 12:43 PM
Some threads over on the AVS Forum are saying that as long as you're careful, there's no need to go play the initiation DVD's for the first 100 hours anymore.

I would agree with that. We just avoided side and/or top bars and prolonged viewing of channels with static logos, and have had not had any image retention issues whatsoever.

I spent a lot of time at AVS in the weeks before we purchased, and some folks over there just obsess about this stuff (break-in periods, calibration) WAY too much. On the other hand, that site is a treasure trove of information. It's just a matter of deciding what advice to follow and what to disregard.

SunDeck
07-14-2007, 12:49 PM
I bought a flat screen, but it's not one of this razor thin tuners. The tuner can translate the HD into the...um...analog? signal. I don't remember all the mumbo jumbo from when I bought it, but basically the thing does accept the digital signals that will be required in whatever year that is out in the near future. 2009?

Anyway, mine was $320 and it works fine with the HD channels. FWIW.

Yachtzee
11-23-2007, 03:54 PM
Anyone buy a new TV today? Our TV finally crapped out and our inlaws gave us $500 for a new one. Picked up an Olevia 532H 32" LCD HDTV. Consumer Reports said it was a good TV for the money. Other than the first one I brought home not working, I like it. It seems like our standard definition channels look better and I played a regular DVD in the Xbox360 that looked really good.

I won't be able to afford HD Satellite for a while, so I was wondering how good those HD Antennae "rabbit ears" are. Are they worth it, or can you only get good HD reception over the air if you have one of those old-fashioned outdoor aerials on your roof? I don't want to spend $40-50 on something that won't do any good.

GIK
11-23-2007, 04:42 PM
I used the HD "rabbit ears" on my TV before getting a HD box and it worked well. No problems with reception in my area, but I only used them for a couple weeks as I decided I wanted more HD programming.

George Foster
11-23-2007, 11:40 PM
Anyone buy a new TV today? Our TV finally crapped out and our inlaws gave us $500 for a new one. Picked up an Olevia 532H 32" LCD HDTV. Consumer Reports said it was a good TV for the money. Other than the first one I brought home not working, I like it. It seems like our standard definition channels look better and I played a regular DVD in the Xbox360 that looked really good.

I won't be able to afford HD Satellite for a while, so I was wondering how good those HD Antennae "rabbit ears" are. Are they worth it, or can you only get good HD reception over the air if you have one of those old-fashioned outdoor aerials on your roof? I don't want to spend $40-50 on something that won't do any good.

I just did this and my outside Antenna works great. All the local channels are in HD, there "primetime" programming and football games on Sunday.:thumbup::thumbup:

The one thing you should know is that the antenna attachment goes in where your cable connection goes. I have the dish so the cable connection was not being used. All I have to do is switch the "input" button to switch from antenna to satellite.

There is no such thing as "an HD antenna." Any antenna will work.
If you live within 15-20 miles of the local stations then I would get a "inside" antenna with rabbit ears. My wife forbid me from having rabbit ears in our TV room so I spent 90 bucks on an outside antenna.

You have to "program" your TV to pick up HD channels with the antenna. You can't just hook it up. You have to "search" for the channels. Read the manual. If you have any questions PM me, I'll be more than happy to help.

919191
12-04-2007, 08:38 AM
I don't usually but extended warranties, but I would recommend one for TVs. I bought a Sony LCD HD TV almost 3 years ago. I bought the extended warranty for either 4 or 5 years- can't remember right now. Sunday before last, it quit, and the warning light indicated it was the lamp, a covered repair. The lamp costs almost 200 bucks. Lately, I have had purplish/lavender spots showing up around the screen. I told them about it too. The technician came yesterday and replaced the lamp- it took about 2 minutes- and saw the spots and called his boss. It needs a new light engine and will soon be replaced at no cost to me. The price of a light engine is around a thousand dollars for this model. Glad I got the warranty.

TeamBoone
12-04-2007, 10:01 AM
I have a small spec on the screen of my LG. It was hit with the metal tip of a small balsa wood airplane.

As I said, it's tiny but annoying because it's there (no one else seems to notice). Is there a way to fix it?

macro
12-04-2007, 11:50 AM
I have a small spec on the screen of my LG. It was hit with the metal tip of a small balsa wood airplane.

As I said, it's tiny but annoying because it's there (no one else seems to notice). Is there a way to fix it?

First of all, TeamBoone shouldn't have been throwing airplanes at the television.

:devil:

All I could come up with was this:

http://www.moniserv.com/index.htm

I know you're not going to ship your TV to California where this outfit is located, but perhaps it will inspire you to find something similar. I've never heard of an LCD screen being damaged or of anyone attempting to repair.

Good luck with it!

Sabo Fan
12-30-2007, 04:41 PM
Seems as though I may be unexpectedly thrust into the market for a new TV. Last night while watching the Pats-Giants game my 27 inch Magnavox that I bought about 3 years ago seemed to turn itself off. Thought maybe it was just a one-time occurence but now the thing won't turn on. I hit the power button and it seems to come on for about half a second and then seems to turn itself off. Trying to check around and see how much it would be to fix it but I'm worried it won't be worth it. Was wondering if anyone had run into this issue before and could help me out or let me know a good place to take it. Thanks.

919191
12-30-2007, 05:57 PM
Is it an LCD TV? If so, is it possibly the lamp?

Sabo Fan
12-30-2007, 06:42 PM
Is it an LCD TV? If so, is it possibly the lamp?

Nope, not an LCD. It's a flat screen Magnavox stereo TV, no frills really.

LoganBuck
04-11-2008, 03:32 PM
Hey what do you guys think about this tv? I am still looking for one for the bedroom. It comes bundled with a upconverting DVD player, and free shipping. I am not a HDTV teckie, so any advice would be great.

http://www.tigerdirect.com/applications/searchtools/item-Details.asp?EdpNo=3778655&sku=S226-3252

AtomicDumpling
04-12-2008, 12:07 AM
Hey what do you guys think about this tv? I am still looking for one for the bedroom. It comes bundled with a upconverting DVD player, and free shipping. I am not a HDTV teckie, so any advice would be great.

http://www.tigerdirect.com/applications/searchtools/item-Details.asp?EdpNo=3778655&sku=S226-3252

Sharp is a quality brand. The TV comes with 1080p and dual HDMI, so you should be good to go. The DVD player by Onkyo is probably a $100-150 value.

If your room has lots of lamps or lots of sunlight then an LCD is great. If you watch lots of animated movies or shows then LCDs are great.

If you watch lots of sports then a plasma or rear-projection would be better because LCDs don't handle fast moving objects very well. If you watch lots of horror/adventure movies then a plasma would be best. LCD TVs don't handle dark colors very well, so you might not be able to make out dark scenes when watching an LCD.

These comments are nit-picking really because all modern TVs are excellent.

When you hook it up make sure to get a high-definition digital box with HDMI from your cable or satellite provider.

SteelSD
04-12-2008, 12:48 AM
Hey what do you guys think about this tv? I am still looking for one for the bedroom. It comes bundled with a upconverting DVD player, and free shipping. I am not a HDTV teckie, so any advice would be great.

http://www.tigerdirect.com/applications/searchtools/item-Details.asp?EdpNo=3778655&sku=S226-3252

User reviews are good at epinions.com: http://www99.epinions.com/Sharp_LC_32D62U_Television

I'd also question whether or not this unit has a digital tuner (and it looks like it might not). That's not an issue if you're pumping digital sattelite, digital cable, or an upscaling DVD, Blu Ray, or HD-DVD source into it. But if it has no digital tuner, you may not be able to receive over-the-air HD broadcasts when the "switch" occurs. Not that you should worry, but without an internal digital tuner this television qualifies as a "monitor" if it's only "HD-Ready". And that's ok if you're pumping a digital signal into it as I am with Dish Network.

There are very very few 32" LCD televisions that will actually display a 1080p signal, so that's a question I would ask prior to purchase. Does the unit actually accept and process a native 1080p signal?

Also consider that at 32", the eyes might not be able to tell the difference between a 720p signal and a 1080p signal. While I'm not suggesting that you pass on the set you're looking at, there may be 32" 720p options that will get a lot less expensive very soon. And by "a lot less expensive", I'm talking about the $500 to $600 price range within the next 6 months.

In the end, if you're happy with the deal, the go for it. It looks like a good HDTV that's getting good reviews. Yet if I were a consultant, I'd suggest that you check you local Best Buy for a 40" or larger Sony or Samsung 1080p unit and then attempt to negotiate a price point around $1,000 to $1,200.

bucksfan
04-12-2008, 11:49 AM
Looking back at this, I must now update to my current situation :

On the eve of the NCAA National Championship football game, I went out and bought a 40" Samsung LCD LNT-4053H. Got the floor model at a reduced price and was watching the National championship game at home in hi-def via the antenna within 30 minutes. The antenna did work quite well. However, within the month we upgraded our cable to digital and now get quite a few HD stations and really enjoy it. It was a major upgrade from the 13 year old 27" Magnavox, but I have really enjoyed it, especially for sporting events. It's a great tv for our situation and budget, certainly not top of the line, but perfect for us.

LoganBuck
04-12-2008, 03:35 PM
User reviews are good at epinions.com: http://www99.epinions.com/Sharp_LC_32D62U_Television

I'd also question whether or not this unit has a digital tuner (and it looks like it might not). That's not an issue if you're pumping digital sattelite, digital cable, or an upscaling DVD, Blu Ray, or HD-DVD source into it. But if it has no digital tuner, you may not be able to receive over-the-air HD broadcasts when the "switch" occurs. Not that you should worry, but without an internal digital tuner this television qualifies as a "monitor" if it's only "HD-Ready". And that's ok if you're pumping a digital signal into it as I am with Dish Network.

There are very very few 32" LCD televisions that will actually display a 1080p signal, so that's a question I would ask prior to purchase. Does the unit actually accept and process a native 1080p signal?

Also consider that at 32", the eyes might not be able to tell the difference between a 720p signal and a 1080p signal. While I'm not suggesting that you pass on the set you're looking at, there may be 32" 720p options that will get a lot less expensive very soon. And by "a lot less expensive", I'm talking about the $500 to $600 price range within the next 6 months.

In the end, if you're happy with the deal, the go for it. It looks like a good HDTV that's getting good reviews. Yet if I were a consultant, I'd suggest that you check you local Best Buy for a 40" or larger Sony or Samsung 1080p unit and then attempt to negotiate a price point around $1,000 to $1,200.

Thanks Steel and AtomicDumpling.

This is for my bedroom, and must fit into the armoire that my wife had to have, that has sat empty with a twenty inch tv on top of it for two years (the 20" is too deep for the cabinent). I am with DirectTV so it should be ok, as far as the tuner goes.

The room is fairly dark most of the time, and the lighting is definately on the dimmer side.

Would I be better off with a 32" Olevia or Vizio that is 720p, and save the bucks, or will other quality brands get that low eventually? I am not in a hurry to do anything, and I just thought that the Sharp deal looked good. The price is good through midnight tomorrow.

Yachtzee
04-12-2008, 07:55 PM
Thanks Steel and AtomicDumpling.

This is for my bedroom, and must fit into the armoire that my wife had to have, that has sat empty with a twenty inch tv on top of it for two years (the 20" is too deep for the cabinent). I am with DirectTV so it should be ok, as far as the tuner goes.

The room is fairly dark most of the time, and the lighting is definately on the dimmer side.

Would I be better off with a 32" Olevia or Vizio that is 720p, and save the bucks, or will other quality brands get that low eventually? I am not in a hurry to do anything, and I just thought that the Sharp deal looked good. The price is good through midnight tomorrow.

I can't really say about others, but I can vouch for the 32" Olevia. I have one and I really love it. I've heard it a number of times that, at 32", 720p is good enough as far as resolution goes. I've heard that for a TV that size, the human eye can't tell the difference between 720 and 1080. I wish I could upgrade to the HD package on DirectTV. For now I have to be satisfied with the locals in HD, which is still nice. Just watched some of round 3 of the Masters. HD was definitely meant for sports.

SteelSD
04-13-2008, 01:04 PM
Thanks Steel and AtomicDumpling.

This is for my bedroom, and must fit into the armoire that my wife had to have, that has sat empty with a twenty inch tv on top of it for two years (the 20" is too deep for the cabinent). I am with DirectTV so it should be ok, as far as the tuner goes.

The room is fairly dark most of the time, and the lighting is definately on the dimmer side.

Would I be better off with a 32" Olevia or Vizio that is 720p, and save the bucks, or will other quality brands get that low eventually? I am not in a hurry to do anything, and I just thought that the Sharp deal looked good. The price is good through midnight tomorrow.

Well, right now Best Buy is running a sale on a 32" 720p Sharp LCD HDTV (LC32AV22U) for $699 (check your local circular). Also note that if you barter, you might be able to save some money by bundling items together. For example, see if you can get a package deal with a PS3 or even an good upscaling DVD player. Also, make sure to ask about any special inclusions with the purchase of an HDTV.

Basically, ask the salesperson for a deal and then, if he says no, get a manager. It's a good time to be in the market for electronics.

LoganBuck
12-11-2008, 03:55 PM
I am to TV shopping as Angelina Jolie is to kids.

My living room TV is on its last legs. So I am again in the market for a TV. I have narrowed the search to 4 TVs from Sears

42" Panasonic Plasma 1080p
http://www.sears.com/shc/s/ProductDisplay?thirdPartyEnabled=&name=&catalogId=12605&conf_third_p_email=&third_p_email=&email=&langId=-1&third_p_name=&storeId=10153&partNumber=05775538000P&RTIFlag=4
50" Panasonic Plasma 720p
http://www.sears.com/shc/s/p_10153_12605_05775528000P?mv=rr
40" Samsung LCD 1080p
http://www.sears.com/shc/s/p_10153_12605_05771068000P?vName=Computers+%26+Ele ctronics&cName=Televisions&sName=Flat+Panel
40" Sony LCD 1080p
http://www.sears.com/shc/s/p_10153_12605_05771658000P?vName=Computers+%26+Ele ctronics&cName=Televisions&sName=Flat+Panel
All the TVs cost $900, Sears is also offering 36 months 0% interest or 10% instant savings that I would probably put toward a BluRay machine (Which they are also giving $50 off of in a bundle). I am leaning toward one of the plasmas, probably the 1080p, but I couldn't really notice any difference in the picture. Any thoughts?

durl
12-11-2008, 04:00 PM
If it were me choosing, I'd likely go with the plasma. The "screen-door" effect on LCDs bothers me somewhat.

And if you're going blu-ray, the 1080p would be a better choice to take full advantage of the player's resolution.

JaxRed
12-11-2008, 04:08 PM
I'm an LCD fan myself. And LCD's are taking more and more of the market.

SteelSD
12-11-2008, 04:45 PM
I am to TV shopping as Angelina Jolie is to kids.

My living room TV is on its last legs. So I am again in the market for a TV. I have narrowed the search to 4 TVs from Sears

42" Panasonic Plasma 1080p
http://www.sears.com/shc/s/ProductDisplay?thirdPartyEnabled=&name=&catalogId=12605&conf_third_p_email=&third_p_email=&email=&langId=-1&third_p_name=&storeId=10153&partNumber=05775538000P&RTIFlag=4
50" Panasonic Plasma 720p
http://www.sears.com/shc/s/p_10153_12605_05775528000P?mv=rr
40" Samsung LCD 1080p
http://www.sears.com/shc/s/p_10153_12605_05771068000P?vName=Computers+%26+Ele ctronics&cName=Televisions&sName=Flat+Panel
40" Sony LCD 1080p
http://www.sears.com/shc/s/p_10153_12605_05771658000P?vName=Computers+%26+Ele ctronics&cName=Televisions&sName=Flat+Panel
All the TVs cost $900, Sears is also offering 36 months 0% interest or 10% instant savings that I would probably put toward a BluRay machine (Which they are also giving $50 off of in a bundle). I am leaning toward one of the plasmas, probably the 1080p, but I couldn't really notice any difference in the picture. Any thoughts?

I'd go with the Sony or Samsung (would lean toward the Sony), while the Panny 720p plasma wouldn't even be a consideration. The 42" Panny plasma isn't a bad TV, I just swing toward LCD units myself.

GoReds33
12-11-2008, 05:32 PM
I like LCD's, especially if you're going to be close to it. Plasma TV's are great if you're a reasonable distance away. In my bedroom, an LCD works perfect, because I'm pretty close.

redsfanmia
12-11-2008, 06:45 PM
I bought a 42" LG lcd 1080p for $699 at HH Gregg I dont know anything about these new fangled televisions and have not even set it up yet, did I do ok or did I get junk?

AtomicDumpling
12-11-2008, 06:59 PM
If your TV room is dark go with the 1080p plasma. If your room is brightly lit go with the LCD. Like a traditional tube TV, Plasma TVs have a glass screen that reflects light, which can cause glare on the screen. It bothers some people.

LCDs do not present dark colors well, so if you watch a lot of movies you would be better off with a plasma. If you watch a lot of animated shows an LCD is better. Plasmas are better for watching sports because LCDs can lag on fast-moving objects like baseballs and hockey pucks.

Generally if you want a really big TV (>42") you will end up buying a plasma. If you want a smaller TV you will end up with an LCD. This is because LCDs are not made in the largest sizes yet.

There is not much difference in quality from one brand to another on TVs right now. I wouldn't pay too much extra for a famous name. Just make sure you get a decent warranty.

GoReds33
12-11-2008, 07:02 PM
I bought a 42" LG lcd 1080p for $699 at HH Gregg I dont know anything about these new fangled televisions and have not even set it up yet, did I do ok or did I get junk?Sounds like a good deal. I like to go with Vizio, but I'm on a tighter budget. I think you did good.

chicoruiz
12-11-2008, 07:42 PM
If you can wait, the best time to buy a big TV is generally the week after the Super Bowl.

LoganBuck
12-11-2008, 08:59 PM
So should I get the warranty? I always decline on them, but this is a bigger purchase. When I was shopping last week I asked what a 3 year warranty would cost and was told it will be $300 for any of these TVs.

Steel why wouldn't you go with the Panasonic 1080p?

Also what kind of Lifespan can you expect out of these things? My wife and I are seeing the tube TVs we purchased 2001-2002 dying now.

GIK
12-11-2008, 09:41 PM
Plasma-guy here. I'm mucho sensitive to motion blur and have looked at tons of LCDs...doesn't matter if it's an XBR or a 120hz 7-series Samsung, it's there.

FYI- you can snag that 42" 1080p Panny plasma for $799 at Costco.

SteelSD
12-12-2008, 12:26 AM
I bought a 42" LG lcd 1080p for $699 at HH Gregg I dont know anything about these new fangled televisions and have not even set it up yet, did I do ok or did I get junk?

LG is a solid brand so to grab a 42" LCD 1080p unit for $699 is what I consider to be a significant value purchase for you. You'll definitely want to calibrate it to get the best possible picture. I suggest visiting avsforum.com. Go to their message board section for LCD HDTV units and see if you can find a thread on the model number. Generally, you'll find advanced owners (or just major tech geeks) who post their optimal calibration settings. That's where I found the settings for my Samsung LCD and it improved the picture by about five times versus factory settings. But then, I'm very sensitive to picture quality and some setting changes made differences I noticed right away but that my wife couldn't even detect.


So should I get the warranty? I always decline on them, but this is a bigger purchase. When I was shopping last week I asked what a 3 year warranty would cost and was told it will be $300 for any of these TVs.

Steel why wouldn't you go with the Panasonic 1080p?

Also what kind of Lifespan can you expect out of these things? My wife and I are seeing the tube TVs we purchased 2001-2002 dying now.

I just don't like plasma screens, Logan, and even though I realize that the newer generation of plasma screens are much better protected against burn-in, I'm a gamer and I'm still ultra-sensitive to the possibility. I also want nothing to do with the break-in periods (@100 hours of non-static images). Here's the avsforum.com thread for the Panny model:

http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showthread.php?t=1000479

And as long as you treat it right, you should end up with 10,000+ hours for any decent plasma model. I think the general rule is that plasma takes @40,000 to 50,000 hours to degrade to half it's normal brightness. LCD screens are reported to last longer than plasma screens, but that's all about the TV's actual internal light source rather than the LCD display itself. Don't get me wrong, the Panny 1080p gets good reviews and appears to have fine picture quality. It's just not my cup of tea.

As for the extended warranty, it all depends on how the idea of risk affects you. I generally won't purchase one for an electronic item unless it costs 15% or less of the item's value. At $900 to $1000, a $300 extended or replacement warranty is well beyond that threshold and as this technology gets less expensive over time, I consider it an even worse value at that price. Basically, assuming future price drops, it's akin to buying half your TV over again just in case it fails a year or two after your regular manufacturer warranty ends.

GIK
12-12-2008, 08:57 AM
Oh, and BTW, another vote for Costco (no matter what TV you decide to buy) as they extend the manufacturer's warranty by 1-yr.

We bought a Panny plasma there and instead of 1-yr parts/labor, it's 2. Also, Panasonic warrants the actual glass panel for 2-years so, through Costco, its got a 3-yr warranty. All for free.

Another vote too for Panasonic in general as they have a free Concierge service for TV buyers which includes in-home service free for a year.

Dom Heffner
12-13-2008, 10:40 AM
I have an LCD, plasma, and DLP television.

The one that everyone always comments on is the DLP. The picture is gorgeous.

I've read through the thread and didn't see anyone mention DLP upon first glance.

Anyone looking at this type of television?

When I bought mine, I walked up to a clerk at Best Buy and asked what televiison all the staff raves about when they talk shop with each other. They pointed me towards my Toshiba DLP, which something like 62". The picture is just awesome.

SteelSD
12-13-2008, 08:24 PM
I have an LCD, plasma, and DLP television.

The one that everyone always comments on is the DLP. The picture is gorgeous.

I've read through the thread and didn't see anyone mention DLP upon first glance.

Anyone looking at this type of television?

When I bought mine, I walked up to a clerk at Best Buy and asked what televiison all the staff raves about when they talk shop with each other. They pointed me towards my Toshiba DLP, which something like 62". The picture is just awesome.

I like DLP HDTV's Dom, but only when I'm right in front of them at eye level; which is why I think they get raves at 60"+ sizes- they're always right in front of you at eye level. But I very much dislike the distortion one gets when you sway just a bit from the sweet spot of the display and I've very sensitive to the "silk screen" effect. I honestly can't find a single set, even the highest level Toshiba sets where that doesn't bother me. The real kicker for me was the potential for major bulb replacement costs at regular intervals. I considered a DLP set at one point, but that last item turned me away pretty quickly.

Highlifeman21
12-14-2008, 11:09 AM
I like DLP HDTV's Dom, but only when I'm right in front of them at eye level; which is why I think they get raves at 60"+ sizes- they're always right in front of you at eye level. But I very much dislike the distortion one gets when you sway just a bit from the sweet spot of the display and I've very sensitive to the "silk screen" effect. I honestly can't find a single set, even the highest level Toshiba sets where that doesn't bother me. The real kicker for me was the potential for major bulb replacement costs at regular intervals. I considered a DLP set at one point, but that last item turned me away pretty quickly.

Steel

Between 42"-52", would you recommend plasma or LCD?

For whatever reason, I'm brand loyal to Samsung and LG.

The room I'm considering the tv isn't consistently dark, but isn't overpowered with ambient light either... if that makes sense.

Lastly, do you think I'd have a problem mounting the flat panel above a fireplace, and would there be potential for damage due to the heat from the fireplace?

Thanks!

nate
12-14-2008, 11:48 AM
Lastly, do you think I'd have a problem mounting the flat panel above a fireplace, and would there be potential for damage due to the heat from the fireplace?

Thanks!

I had mine mounted above the fireplace for nearly two years. I just took it down recently. The problem was more the height. It really looked cool but it wasn't pleasant to watch. Plus, something "settled" in the mount and the damn thing was crooked. Now, I've put it on top of the "media cabinet" and it's much better to watch and way easier to school youngsters in Halo or CoD.

The heat wasn't a problem for me. My Dad has his mounted above his fireplace and it seems OK.

Highlifeman21
12-14-2008, 11:54 AM
I had mine mounted above the fireplace for nearly two years. I just took it down recently. The problem was more the height. It really looked cool but it wasn't pleasant to watch. Plus, something "settled" in the mount and the damn thing was crooked. Now, I've put it on top of the "media cabinet" and it's much better to watch and way easier to school youngsters in Halo or CoD.

The heat wasn't a problem for me. My Dad has his mounted above his fireplace and it seems OK.

Thanks for the knowledge.

I've heard conflicting reports re: mounting above fireplaces, especially if you use the fireplace often.

Dom Heffner
12-14-2008, 11:54 AM
The real kicker for me was the potential for major bulb replacement costs at regular intervals. I considered a DLP set at one point, but that last item turned me away pretty quickly.


I'm on my second one, and I haven't had to pay for any of them. Apparently they had a problem with mine from the get-go and gave me two replacements free.

The second one has lasted 3 years, and I still have a spare left.

SteelSD
12-15-2008, 03:14 AM
Steel

Between 42"-52", would you recommend plasma or LCD?

For whatever reason, I'm brand loyal to Samsung and LG.

The room I'm considering the tv isn't consistently dark, but isn't overpowered with ambient light either... if that makes sense.

Lastly, do you think I'd have a problem mounting the flat panel above a fireplace, and would there be potential for damage due to the heat from the fireplace?

Thanks!

Depends on your price range and what kind of picture quality you want. The closer you get to the 50"+ range, the more a trained eye can notice the difference between a 720p and a 1080p set when each is properly calibrated.

Ambient light is really only an issue when you're looking at a glossy screen versus a matte screen. I have a Samsung LN-T4066F (40" LCD 1080p) and wouldn't have purchased it for my living room due to the glossy screen, but it works very well in the kind of room you're describing (adults generally call it a "den", but it's really a "toy" room). Thick blinds, and 40-watt bulbs when I have the lights on. I'm not sure a matte finish on a plasma is even possible because of the nature of the build, but I've heard reports that some higher-end model manufacturers have efforted anti-glare tech with varying results. I don't think the glare issue is going to be a deal-breaker for you, though.

On the lower end of the price range, you'll likely find that the black level advantage (deep blacks on-screen <a good thing>) tilts further toward the plasma side of things, but newer LCD models (especially when properly calibrated) have pretty much leveled the playing field. Plasma screens generally emit more ambient heat and generally use more energy. At the size you're looking at, plasmas will be less expensive than their LCD counterparts. LCD sets do not require a break-in time and are not susceptible to burn-in (less of a factor with new plasma tech now), but at the lower end of the price range, there's a slight risk of image persistence if static images are kept on-screen for long periods of time repeatedly.

BTW, I'd boycott LG just out of principle. They were involved in price fixing. Good quality, but poor ethics. Moving on...

I would NOT mount any piece of electronics above a fireplace. Plasma and LCD televisions put out enough heat on their own. No need to risk it and if it's wood-burning, I'd be terribly concerned about soot build-up.

If I were in the market for an HDTV today, I would look at the Sony and Samsung 1080p 120Hz LCD models. They're not cheap but have seen major price drops recently. For example, the 52" Sony KDL-52W4100 is listed at around $1,700 at Amazon right now. That's a beautiful set. If you're going high-end, just take the plunge. One caveat: the anti-motion-blur 120Hz technology is NOT for everyone. It makes everything extremely clear, but also freakishly clear in some cases. I've spent a good deal of time viewing those in the showroom (annoying the wife to no end), and you have to re-train your brain on how to watch video with that setting turned on. In fact, the 120Hz setting has the ability to turn high-def cinema into something akin to watching the film from the movie set while it's being filmed. Yeah, it's like that and it's not how films were intended to be viewed so if you're considering that kind of tech, make sure you're comfortable with it first. Otherwise, you'll be paying extra for a setting you'll be turning off.

SteelSD
12-15-2008, 03:31 AM
I'm on my second one, and I haven't had to pay for any of them. Apparently they had a problem with mine from the get-go and gave me two replacements free.

The second one has lasted 3 years, and I still have a spare left.

You've had a pretty good run of luck then. Is your model number 62HM95 by any chance? I've heard horror stories about bulb replacement on those.

Don't get me wrong, I like the DLP sets, especially at the larger sizes. It was just a confluence of concerns that pushed me away from them. The bulb replacement issue scared me more than anything else and I really didn't want to pay additional $$ for a stand. I did once consider purchasing a Toshiba DLP (best DLP pic quality IMHO). But at that time, with DLP bulbs being @$150 to $300, I saw my future self arguing against replacing one and just putting the money toward a new LCD set instead.

AtomicDumpling
12-15-2008, 04:57 PM
I have my 55" Hitachi plasma TV mounted over my fireplace. I have not had any problems with heat or soot.

We had to build a custom-made mantel that could house the center speaker for the surround-sound system. The mantel blocks all the heat from the fireplace and prevents it from reaching the TV. The bottom of the mantel gets hot, but the air and walls around the TV are no higher than room temperature.

Playadlc
01-18-2009, 10:24 PM
Has anyone ever hired an ISF Calibrator? I am strongly considering getting my HLSxx87W Samsung DLP calibrated.

Where can I find an ISF calibrator in my area? I live in Southern Indiana (about 10 minutes from Louisville). What kind of cost am I looking at? Also, is it really worth to do this? I can't see them making that much of a difference, but everyone that knows more about this stuff than I do says that it is almost a must to get my TV calibrated.

bengalsown
01-18-2009, 11:18 PM
I'm on my second one, and I haven't had to pay for any of them. Apparently they had a problem with mine from the get-go and gave me two replacements free.

The second one has lasted 3 years, and I still have a spare left.

The panasonic TY-LA1000 lamp?

Those were very bad...

DLP lamps at my company sell for anywhere from $185-$250

I wouldn't want a TV i'd have to replace a lamp in every 2 years or so.

Playadlc
01-18-2009, 11:31 PM
The panasonic TY-LA1000 lamp?

Those were very bad...

DLP lamps at my company sell for anywhere from $185-$250

I wouldn't want a TV i'd have to replace a lamp in every 2 years or so.

On my DLP I just checked my lamp hours and it said it was at about 3,300 after 2.5 years. Should I look to get a new bulb?

cincyinco
01-18-2009, 11:37 PM
I am in the market, and I'm looking into the Samsung LED DLP models. They seem to be fairly new. Can anyone give me any opinions?

durl
01-18-2009, 11:52 PM
I'm a big fan of Sony's SXRD sets. The technology is basically a combination of DLP and L-Cos.


Has anyone ever hired an ISF Calibrator? I am strongly considering getting my HLSxx87W Samsung DLP calibrated.

Where can I find an ISF calibrator in my area? I live in Southern Indiana (about 10 minutes from Louisville). What kind of cost am I looking at? Also, is it really worth to do this? I can't see them making that much of a difference, but everyone that knows more about this stuff than I do says that it is almost a must to get my TV calibrated.

I would strongly recommend calibrating your TV. You may not notice a huge difference unless you're using Vivid mode or boosting some of the values. In fact, you may not like the picture after calibration (depending on what you're used to) but it will ensure that you're accurately reproducing the picture, which is the key.

You can do it yourself using a reference DVD. "Digital Video Essentials" is the one that I use. It has lots of tests not just for video, but also audio. They even have a blu-ray version. DV Essentials has audio directions to walk you through each test, telling you how to adjust each setting. It's really simple.

You can get it from Amazon for around $20. It's not as good as having a professional dig into your set, but the price is good.

Playadlc
01-20-2009, 03:42 AM
I would strongly recommend calibrating your TV. You may not notice a huge difference unless you're using Vivid mode or boosting some of the values. In fact, you may not like the picture after calibration (depending on what you're used to) but it will ensure that you're accurately reproducing the picture, which is the key.

You can do it yourself using a reference DVD. "Digital Video Essentials" is the one that I use. It has lots of tests not just for video, but also audio. They even have a blu-ray version. DV Essentials has audio directions to walk you through each test, telling you how to adjust each setting. It's really simple.

You can get it from Amazon for around $20. It's not as good as having a professional dig into your set, but the price is good.

I just saw that Best Buy now offers calibration from their Geek Squad crew. It's $250 and the guys that do it are all ISF certified. Now, I am not really a big fan of Best Buy (their pushing of the monster cables drives me batty) but if these guys are actually ISF certified, it's probably worth it. I think I will give them a shot.

We'll see.

Spitball
06-15-2009, 04:07 PM
My daughter is buying a flat screen television this weekend. Since there are no Best Buy or other large electronic dealers in her area, she is going to buy one at Walmart.

She took a well paying job in the area in February and has been renting a nice home. She is not planning on mounting it on the wall because she is pretty sure the landlords will not let her drill holes and mount a bracket of some sort. My wife, son, and I are going up this weekend (three hours away) for a visit, and I plan to help her install it.


I have a few questions.

1) Are there any problems transporting flat screen TVs? I plan on putting it in the back seat of our family sedan.

2) Since she won't be mounting it on the wall, is there a suggested kind of stand? She plans on putting it in the corner of the livingroom.

3) Which tools am I likely to need in installing it? Any installing tips?

4) Are there any surprises I'm likely to encounter? I remember a friend buying one a couple of years ago and was surprised when he got it home. I don't remember what surprised him, but he is really, really long-winded and...well, I'd rather ask you guys. :)

Thanks.

durl
06-15-2009, 05:10 PM
Walmart has some very good prices on flat-screens. Online, there are a lot more options at very good prices, too. Deals are always out there if you're willing to wait for delivery. Sites like this help: http://www.techbargains.com/


To answer your questions:

1) It should be fine in the back seat. Just keep it upright and don't put pressure on the sides.

2) Stands (TV shelf) can be found at Walmart or Target. Just pick one that suits your taste and budget.

3) You'll likely only need a screwdriver. Flat panels come with a pedestal for when you don't mount it on the wall. You'll likely have to slide the TV down onto posts and use the provided screws to secure the TV to the pedestal.

Chances are, cables will be provided with the TV. However, if your daughter uses satellite or a cable box to watch TV, be aware that you have to have either "component" or "HDMI" cable to view HD signals. If you have to buy either one of those, they will cost you FAR more in the store than you'll pay online. We're talking 4-5X more in the store.

Reds Fanatic
06-15-2009, 05:55 PM
Walmart has some very good prices on flat-screens. Online, there are a lot more options at very good prices, too. Deals are always out there if you're willing to wait for delivery. Sites like this help: http://www.techbargains.com/


To answer your questions:

1) It should be fine in the back seat. Just keep it upright and don't put pressure on the sides.

2) Stands (TV shelf) can be found at Walmart or Target. Just pick one that suits your taste and budget.

3) You'll likely only need a screwdriver. Flat panels come with a pedestal for when you don't mount it on the wall. You'll likely have to slide the TV down onto posts and use the provided screws to secure the TV to the pedestal.

Chances are, cables will be provided with the TV. However, if your daughter uses satellite or a cable box to watch TV, be aware that you have to have either "component" or "HDMI" cable to view HD signals. If you have to buy either one of those, they will cost you FAR more in the store than you'll pay online. We're talking 4-5X more in the store.Good point about the cables. For HDMI cables I recommend a site called monoprice.com. You will get good quality cables for a few dollars. Big stores will try to get you to buy Monster cables don't buy those the prices is horribly high.

Spitball
06-15-2009, 08:29 PM
Thank you very much, guys! I really appreciate the information. I was not sure what tools I needed or even what I needed to know to install this thing. I feel much more confident now! Thanks!

durl
06-16-2009, 10:49 AM
Good point about the cables. For HDMI cables I recommend a site called monoprice.com. You will get good quality cables for a few dollars. Big stores will try to get you to buy Monster cables don't buy those the prices is horribly high.

+1 on monoprice.com. Quality stuff at very good prices.

GIK
06-16-2009, 08:09 PM
+3 for Monoprice.

Boss-Hog
06-16-2009, 10:26 PM
Monoprice gets a big thumbs up from me, too.

919191
06-20-2009, 08:07 AM
Monoprice is great!