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O/T TV choices what to look for?

Discussion in 'Off Topic Threads' started by spitter, Jan 31, 2010.

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  1. spitter

    spitter Well-Known Member TS Supporters

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    If you have the room and can control control the ambient lighting, also consider a theatre projector. I started years ago with an In-Focus EDTV setup, have since jumped to an HD LCD with HDMI input as prices have come down considerably.

    My fixed wall screen is 106 cinema-type and is the picture quality is tremendous... especially watching BluRay and/or up-converted DVDs, coupled to my 5.1 audio system. Cable is excellent also.

    So, while not "really" TV... it is a viable and cost effective option if you have the space, can control lighting and want a home theatre... best part - you can do all the work if your mechanically inclined...

    regards all,

    Jay
     
  2. mixer

    mixer Well-Known Member

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    In the LCD/LED family a Samsung is a great set. Consistantly highly rated. Best advice is to go to a place where you can see the sets side by side all showing the same program. It's not the ultimate comparison but it will get you close to finding the right one for your needs.


    Eric
     
  3. AveragEd

    AveragEd Well-Known Member

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    Our son has had a Samsung 50" 1080p plasma set for over a year and every time we went to his house, we couldn't get over the picture. When we went to restaurants and other places with flat-panel TVs on, we compared what we were seeing to his set and never saw anything better. Accordingly, when we went shopping for a an HDTV, the Samsung plasma was the standard we used.

    I also did a lot of Internet research and if you Google "HDTV" and "LCD vs. plasma" and "720p vs. 1080p," you'll find a lot of good information. Samsung gets consistently high marks on every site.

    LCD has two negatives. When viewed from an angle, some picture clarity is lost and unless you spring for at least a 120hz set (and a 240hz is better), fast-moving images can blur. Plasma has one negative - it consumes 50% to 100% more electricity. Every plasma set I've seen has a 600hz refresh rate, so blurry motion obviously can't be a problem. The number of companies making plasma HDTVs is down to two and I'm told that's because with the energy caps expiring, companies are afraid plasma sales will be impacted. However, one small local family-owned appliance store we shopped told us that every employee in their sales, service and accounting departments at their three locations owns a plasma set. And they weren't trying to sell us something because they were out of plasmas at the time!

    Plasma has blacker blacks while LCD has whiter whites. If you watch a hockey game on side-by-side LCD and plasma sets, you might prefer the LCD's artificially white ice or the plasma's more natural yellowish ice. Either way, the pictures are great!

    The extra cost of a 1080p set may not be beneficial to you if you view your TV from more than 10 feet away and are considering a 50" or smaller set. There is very little actual 1080p programming with BluRay discs being the most common. We watched a BluRay movie on 720p and 1080p sets of the same brand side-by-side and even when we walked up to within six feet of the displays, my wife and I had differing opinions of which was which.

    I stumbled upon a super sale at Best Buy and wound up with a Samsung PN550-series 50" 1080p plasma for $899 - the exact same set our son paid $1,700 for (at Best Buy) 15 months ago. The Best Buy flyer in yesterday's newspaper has them on sale again for $999. An extended warranty that adds four years of in-home service to the one-year manufacturer's warranty is $189. I'm not a fan of extended warranties but I bought that one for our HDTV.

    The choices in HDTV can be baffling but remember that they all will wow you with their picture quality. We've had ours since a week before Christmas and I'm still saying, "Wow!"

    Ed
     
  4. tallpaul

    tallpaul Member

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    I did three months worth of research and side-by-side comparisons of hundreds of TVs. The salespeople were getting tired of seeing me and hearing all my geek questions. I ended up buying a 50" Panasonic 1080 plasma set. Much of what I read about "best bang for your buck" was confirmed after all my comparisons. The plasma technology has been around longer than the LCD and LED technology, so costs have come down. I like the smooth, fluid rendering and rich, subtle details of the colors in the plasma set. I found the LCD to be a bit too much, sort of like getting hit over the head when a gentle nudge is all that's needed.The "burn-in" problems related to the early plasma sets is not an issue anymore. I think you'll find Amazon to be your best source when you finally decide to buy. Their prices were far and away better than anything I could get locally, and they offered free shipping and no tax, plus a worry-free return policy. Go to cnet.com for a good source of reviews and information. Good luck. PJ
     
  5. GunDr

    GunDr Well-Known Member

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    My vote is also plasma. Ours is a 46" Panasonic Viera.

    Shop around locally for the brand you decide on. Then google the model number and look at what's available "on-line". I was surprised at the cost differences. Also, many offer free shipping and NO SALES TAX.
     
  6. shooterIII

    shooterIII Member

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    The other thing you might want to think about with the Plasma is heat if you want to put it in a cabinet, it puts out a lot of heat and in an inclosed cabinet you might have to put a fan in the cabinet.
     
  7. handlepuller

    handlepuller Well-Known Member

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    My vote would be LED.

    So thin, great picture, much less heat and power usage and last forever.
     
  8. KRK32

    KRK32 Member

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    I have a 46 sony bravia its a great tv right along with the samsung. Pay attention to settings most stores crank up the power to give the show models a great picture. Wally world has the cheapest prices without ordering of the internet and HHgreg has the highest of anywhere i seen when i was shopping around for one also if you buy a plasma DONT lay the box down to fit in the back of the car or if you do let it set for atleast 8 hrs before turning on after setting it upright again my brother learned that the hard way. Kirk
     
  9. highflyer

    highflyer TS Member

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    I bought the Panasonic Viera Plasma too in 42 or 46 not sure of the size. I went to buy another television. They took so long to find it I had time to watch several televisions for awhile in a side by side comparison. That is the one that had the best picture of those I could see. I have had it for about 2 years now and been very happy with it. When I hook up the pictures from my camera to it the picture is unbelievable. Better than real life with more vibrant colors and great definition.
     
  10. spitter

    spitter Well-Known Member TS Supporters

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    OK... one other contribution I'll add... I bought through Costco the Vizio Brand of LCD... have had nothing but great experience at a great price point.

    One thing I always looked for was the reflection of the screen, so be aware of what lighting will be behind your viewing area (you). Where I put my TV, I had some lighting and reflection from windows, so their anti-reflective screen material is nice.

    If you will have any direct lighting, windows or other reflective surfaces, pay attention to the screens you're viewing and how your rooms may impact the potential contenders - reflecting or non-reflective screens?!

    Picture quality may differ, but your enjoyment may be increased or diminished, depending upon your room's layout. Just an FYI...

    Jay
     
  11. HC_John

    HC_John TS Member

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    I would first have to ask what is your intentions with the tv. TV,videos,movies, then I love my 50" plasma. But if you want to play games on it as well then I have to say stick with lcd/led. Then I would suggest a Visio lcd. Plasma's can suffer burn in.
     
  12. mixer

    mixer Well-Known Member

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    ttt? It's been 3 weeks since your 1st post and you still haven't made a choice?


    Eric
     
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