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View Full Version : Buying an HDTV. Need advice. Please look!


applemax
Oct 30, 2005, 05:24 AM
Hi all! Thanks for coming to look. First things first, I know this is in the wrong forum but it's the closest one. So I apologise. Here's the help I need:

==(1)==

I'm looking to buy an HDTV LCD that is under 600. It has to be between 17inches and 26inches and it must be UK PAL compatible. But it must be under 600. Now, I have found a few, but none have HDMI connectivity, which I'd really like to have. The only alternative is DVI-I but I'm not familiar with that. If going for DVI means a loss in quality, then I'd rather have HDMI. Although if they are the same, maybe. HDMI is a priority for me though.

==(2)==

Also, How does Component video (YPbPr, I think) compare with HDMI and DVI?

==(3)==

Also! What brand is the best for HD. I've been looking at Philips. Is there a better option?

======

Thanks for your help

applemax
Oct 30, 2005, 08:51 AM
Hello? Is anyone there? :rolleyes:

jsw
Oct 30, 2005, 09:24 AM
I haven't made the leap yet, but my understanding is that HDMI is DVI-I +
audio. If true, DVI would actually be fine as it would allow easy hookup as a monitor, and it would imply identical picture quality.

Component video is inferior to DVI/HDMI but is more than sufficient for non-hi-def viewing, and a lot of what you'll watch won't be true HD. So... it's not as good, but it's fine, esp. on the screen sizes you're looking at.

I have no brand recommendations, sorry!

maddav
Oct 30, 2005, 09:30 AM
Samsung LE26R41B (http://www.empiredirect.co.uk/content/products/details/index.asp?modelcode=SAM-LE26R41B&dt=Televisions&st=LCD+TV&make=Samsung)

This should be just what you're after, 26" LCD, HDTV ready, it's got HDMI. component, 2 SCARTS, VGA, for under £600.

It's the smaller version of what I've got! :p

MisterMe
Oct 30, 2005, 09:37 AM
I haven't made the leap yet, but my understanding is that HDMI is DVI-I +
audio. If true, DVI would actually be fine as it would allow easy hookup as a monitor, and it would imply identical picture quality.

Component video is inferior to DVI/HDMI but is more than sufficient for non-hi-def viewing, and a lot of what you'll watch won't be true HD. So... it's not as good, but it's fine, esp. on the screen sizes you're looking at.

I have no brand recommendations, sorry!Component video is fine for true hi-def viewing. On my HD monitor, the DVI port limits you to 720p whereas component video allows everything up to 1080i. The DVI advantage of having a digital connection all the way to the monitor is hype. If you don't believe me, go to a store like Best Buy, Sears, Circuit City, or Fry's and look at real connections--not salesman talk, but real connections with your own eyes--and see for yourself.

carpe diem
Oct 30, 2005, 10:45 AM
Why beg people to look in your thread, then bump it????

jsw
Oct 30, 2005, 10:48 AM
Why beg people to look in your thread, then bump it????
Was there any reason whatsoever for this post of yours? :rolleyes:

jsw
Oct 30, 2005, 10:50 AM
Component video is fine for true hi-def viewing. On my HD monitor, the DVI port limits you to 720p whereas component video allows everything up to 1080i. The DVI advantage of having a digital connection all the way to the monitor is hype. If you don't believe me, go to a store like Best Buy, Sears, Circuit City, or Fry's and look at real connections--not salesman talk, but real connections with your own eyes--and see for yourself.
I stand corrected. Lots of time reading about it, little time in stores... where I'll definitely go prior to any purchase. Not that I trust stores to set them up properly, mind you.

And I was definitely unaware of the 720p limit, which surprises me given the much larger resolution possible with DVI. Is this a limit for all sets? Seems strange.

Of course, with the sizes mentioned by the OP, anything should look fine and superior to standard sets.

MisterMe
Oct 30, 2005, 11:50 AM
I stand corrected. Lots of time reading about it, little time in stores... where I'll definitely go prior to any purchase. Not that I trust stores to set them up properly, mind you.

And I was definitely unaware of the 720p limit, which surprises me given the much larger resolution possible with DVI. Is this a limit for all sets? Seems strange.

Of course, with the sizes mentioned by the OP, anything should look fine and superior to standard sets.A quick Google search shows that the 720p limit is not a property of the DVI standard. However, it is a limit of my 37" Sharp Aquos TV/HDTV monitor's DVI port. This points out the care with which you should do your research. People like to throw around specs to prove how smart they are. However, you want the best possible picture. Just because products are fully buzzword-compliant and jargon-enabled doesn't mean that they will display the best picture. Until everything is exclusively digital, getting the best picture is going to require the paying customer to do real research.

MacTruck
Oct 30, 2005, 06:49 PM
Got a mac mini hooked up through a dvi to hdmi cable that I found on ebay for $5 and it works great. DVI and HDMI are the same, just hdmi carries audio. You will have to hook up audio seperate if anyone of your connectors is not all hdmi.

Maclomaniac
Oct 31, 2005, 07:16 AM
DVI and HDMI both carry digital signals, but HDMI can carry digital audio too. DVI-I can actually carry both analog and digial signals. If you see a DVI-D connection, it is digital only. Component video, which is an analog signal can give you really nice looking HD, but in limited resolutions. In the near future, 1080p will be the resolution you really want on displays, but I'm not sure if you'll find it on a display for that price right now. More importantly, if you're going to be watching TV on it too, look for a display that is HDCP-compatible. This is a high definition content protection that will be required by law (at least in the US) to be on most devices (including DVD players, etc) and won't work with non-HDCP compatible devices.

As far as brand names, Phillips is a good one, along with Sharp, Samsung, LG... go with brands you recognize but make sure you research the individual model because all companies are making low-end displays that may not be as reliable as you would think.

Like everyone else said, do your research. A lot of people watch regular TV stretched to a 16:9 aspect ratio on a $3000 TV and think they are watching HDTV. There's a lot more to know now than there was when you just went out and bought a regular old CRT.

Also, be aware that DVI and HDMI have distance limitations and the signal will degrade. If you are going to ever want to use long cable runs (10 meters +), make sure you use high quality cable...

N10248
Oct 31, 2005, 07:43 AM
Stay clear of cheap Philips models, i had a 26pf4310 and the image went pink after 2 days and had a load of dead pixels, so i had it changed for a Samsung le26r41bd (which i get tommorow YAY) has every connection available and built in freeview tuner.

Bye