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Meat-Run

Which TV to get???

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I'm looking at getting a 37"-42" LCD flat screen for my basement. I need some input to watch out for like dpi, and clarity, etc. Any advice from the peanut room or experienced eletronic geek (no offense)?

Also is Best Buy a good option or should I look other places? I live in Brainerd and don't want to travel to far shopping for a TV. I have looked at few yesterday and they run from $900-$1700. Which brands to stay away from etc?

Thanks for your input.

Meat Run

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Hold off as long as you can. The prices are dropping on the big screens. I can't help with a tv as I went to a projection screen and I can't get enough of my 90"

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I heard that they are not that efficient on electricity but how long do I wait? My tax return will be burning a hole in my pocket by mid February!?

mr

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I just purchased a 50" Samsung Plasma. Love the TV, reasons for this purchase....Alway's had good luck with Samsung products and price was cheaper then LCD in that size. I went from a 27" tube TV to the Plasma, I couldn't tell the difference between Plasma's and LCD's. I was more after the increased size for the room it was going to fill. I bought it from Best Buy and so far have not regretted it. Now it's time to figure out a surround sound system to go with it. grin.gif

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I would go to a place and look at all of them lined up next to each other. My in-laws just bought a lcd flat screen for their daughter for christmas, and you would be surprised how different the pictures are when you can look at them all at once. Anyone at Best Buy will tell you to buy Sony, because that is "sopposed" to be the number one TV manufacturer. In all reality pretty much all of the TVs are made overseas, so they probably are about the same internally. Look at them lined up, and see what one looks the best to you. Don't settle for paying $300 extra for a name.

CA

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Go to the public library and see if they have back issues of Consumer Reports magazine. The Nov and Dec issues have good reviews of current offerings. It will be well worth your time. A lot of the time, cheaper brands get higher quality ratings.

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I am waiting for the prices to come down, which they are. If I had to buy one I would stay with lcd's. I don't like the idea of possibly burning an image in plasma tv's. I think Sony pulled out of the plasma tv's and staying only with lcd's. There are lots of brands out there that produced tv's under different names that are now coming out with their own such as LG, or olevia'. Just make sure you understand the contrast ratios and the 1080i or 1080p thing(I still am not sure what that is).

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I debated long and hard the pros and cons of each and finally decided on a Panasonic 50" plasma. I liked the look of some of the Sony LCDs too, but I was not interested in spending 75% more than I did to get the Sony LCD that caught my eye. My mom has a LCD and it looks pretty nice too, but the plasmas have a picture that seems more life-like to me.

I bought from Best Buy because they had a good, although not the very best, price and because they had it in-stock and are only 30 mi away.

Vanns.com often has good prices. Plus, they typically have free shipping and no tax. Also, they are authorized dealers for all the stuff I've ever looked at on their HSOforum. The drawback you ask? Well, shipping back to Montana can be fair cost depending on the item should that prove necessary. I've done business with them several times; both buying and returning were hassle-free.

Surprisingly Sears sometimes has good prices too and are/were offering no interest on a HDTV purchase using your Sears card. If they would have had one in-stock at the closest Sears I probably would have gotten it there because it was the same price as at Best Buy but with no interest.

1080P is the latest buzz on resolution and costs more than 720P, but whether or not you will realize much benefit from it depends on the size of the screen and the seating distance.

If you wait long enough, the technology that is expensive today will be cheaper tomorrow and will be yesterday's technology when you finally buy.

There is a lot of reading available on HDTV if you just Google around a bit.

PS: Don't let "burn in" scare you off of a plasma if you like the picture. True burn-in is very rare on the newer sets unless you really screw up bad. There can be some temporary (gone in a couple minutes) image retention if some really high contrast stuff is stationary for a while. I have yet to see any IR (image retentions) on my set.

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Yeah, image burn-in is quite a rare thing now. In order for something like that to happen, you would seriously have to leave the TV showing the exact same image for quite a long time. That RARELY ever happens. And even if something like that were to happen, many of the TVs are now equipped with technology to remove it.

One thing to keep in mind is side viewing. Many of the lesser quality displays will actually be hard to see from the side. This is one of the reasons why I opted to not get a rear-projection HDTV. Once you get a little off to the side, the picture fades and you can barely see it. Picture quality was only nice if you were directly in front of it.

If I were you, I would strongly invest in 1080p. 480i is what normal TVs are. 720p & 720i are beginning to lose their buzz as more and more TVs are switching to the higher resolution displays of 1080i & 1080p for a much better picture. So if you plan on getting an HD-DVD or Bluray DVD player, I would suggest the 1080 to fully benefit from it.

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One may buy a 1080p TV, but there are no 1080p TV shows/broadcast and, from what I've read, won't be for a long time - if ever. So, if watching TV in HD is your primary use, then a 1080p set is really unnecessary.

But, as mentioned, if you plan to get a HD-DVD or BlueRay player, a 1080p TV is the only way to get full/the best benefit. Other than that (or maybe if you are going to use it for a computer monitor) a 720p set can and will blow your socks off on a HD feed.

Some sources say that for sports and other fast action, a 720p signal is better than a 1080i signal because there is less propensity to display "jaggies" from the interlacing process used on 1080i.

Personally, I'm happy to "buy my time" with a moderately priced 720p set because by the time (and if) 1080p becomes mainstream, the technology will only be better and less expensive.

EDIT: As mentioned previously, seating distance matters too.

For example, comparing 720P to 1080P on a 40" set, one has to sit roughly 5-6 feet or closer to the TV to get the benefit of the 1080P set. Sitting further than 5-6 feet away, both sets appear basically the same and would be more or less a waste of the 1080P resolution.

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Thanks for all the "techi" .02's I really appreciate it. I know for sure that it will be under 40 inches and in/around the 32-37" range. I understand the 720p but what about the 3,000/1 ratio that I see at some stores. Some are around 600/1 ratio and some as high as 6,000/1 ratio. What's this mean? Sony, Sanyo, Toshiba, Panosonic, are all good brands but is there any others that I might be missing? I can't thank you guys enough for your input.

Trent

Meat-Run

smile.gifsmile.gif

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Dunno what to say about the contrast. I don't know if there is any standardized way it's measured/rated amongst manufacturers. So, it's hard to say if the numbers are truly apples-to-apples between brands.

One really needs to go look, but the problem is, nearly all the sets are set up really bad in the stores. All the manufacturers try to make their sets "pop" in the store by cranking the settings way too high.

While it's kind of a PITA, bringing home two or maybe three "finalists" and trying them side-by-side in your home really is the best. Keep the one you like and return the others. Just make sure you adjust them all similarly with a setup disc like AVIA or DVE.

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Quote:

Thanks for all the "techi" .02's I really appreciate it. I know for sure that it will be under 40 inches and in/around the 32-37" range. I understand the 720p but what about the 3,000/1 ratio that I see at some stores. Some are around 600/1 ratio and some as high as 6,000/1 ratio. What's this mean? Sony, Sanyo, Toshiba, Panosonic, are all good brands but is there any others that I might be missing? I can't thank you guys enough for your input.

Trent

Meat-Run

smile.gifsmile.gif


Contrast ratio = very important

What contrast ratios are is a definition of how well the TV is able to display the brightest whites and darkest blacks. The higher the ratio, the better the overall screen picture will be. The lower the ratio, the more that everything will be kind of blurred. The whites won't be very white and the blacks will be more of a really dark gray.

If you have any other questions regarding TV/electronic terminology, here's a nice site with a description of everything. cool.gif

TV & HDTV Glossary

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