HDTV questions

Discussion in 'Community Discussion' started by maflynn, Nov 8, 2010.

  1. maflynn Moderator

    maflynn

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    #1
    So I may be in the market for a 42" - 46" hi-def tv. Any suggestions on what to look out for?

    Plasma seems to be affordable in this price range, LCD and even edge-lit LED TVs.

    I was at costco yesterday and saw a number of brands that looked nice, all at or under a thousand bucks. I'd prefer spending around 600 bucks, maybe up to 800.

    Given that budget, would technology would suit me the best, and provide the best image quality.
     
  2. velocityg4 macrumors 68040

    velocityg4

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    #2
    From what I have seen they are both about equal. I would take LCD though as you do not have to worry about burn in on the screen and it uses a lot less electricity.

    Just go to Best Buy and walk by a wall section of plasma screen's. It's like being in front of a space heater.

    I would be more interested in the number of HDMI connections on the back three is perfect to me for HD cable, Blu-Ray and miscellaneous (side ones are a pain for permanent equipment). How it performed upscaling 4:3 standard def pictures (number of zoom options and quality). If it is 1080P native rather than 720P (2.1 megapixel vs 0.9 megapixel). How loud the speakers get. If it has digital audio output for your stereo. If it has composite and component connectors (for older equipment such as DVD, Laser Disc, VHS, and video game systems).

    Also if the coloring is not that great try changing the settings. The installer may not have optimized the tone, contrast and brightness or someone who did not know better was fiddling with the settings. Also turn it off to see how close to pure black the screen is. Because that is as black as it can get for night scenes in movies. You do not want it to be grey.

    I was just at Best Buy and CostCo comparing TV's the prices are on par but Best Buy has a far greater selection though Costco has better return policies and default warranty. At least you can find the ones you like at Costco then find similar units at Best Buy to compare to check out how it handles standard def pictures as they usually have standard and HD channels in store to look at. They may not have the exact model but the same make and features though a slightly different screen size could give you a good idea of what to expect.

    Personally I am partial to Insignia. They basically use previous generation LG parts. Their zoom and upscaling is exceptional on SD broadcast TV and DVD's. Coloring is on par with similar bargain screens but have good black levels. The speakers are not the loudest but remain clear (LCD TV's rarely have decent speakers), for sports and movies I use a 5.1 system.

    If you do not have one I would save for at least a simple 5.1 system. Even the cheap $100 to $150 systems will blow away the speaker performance on an LCD TV. It makes for a more encompassing experience watching a good movie or boxing match and being surrounded by the audio with some distinct bass.
     
  3. maflynn thread starter Moderator

    maflynn

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    #3
    Thanks for the info.

    I'm finding that Samsung is also highly regarded as well.
     
  4. chrmjenkins, Nov 8, 2010
    Last edited: Nov 8, 2010

    chrmjenkins macrumors 603

    chrmjenkins

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    #4
    Plasmas tend to have better image quality and pricing at the expense of more heat, weight and power usage.

    Burn in hasn't been an issue for plasmas in years.
     
  5. yg17 macrumors G5

    yg17

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    #5
    I have a Samsung 40" LCD in the living room, and a Vizio 32" in the bedroom, and while the Samsung is great, I was actually amazed at how nice of a TV the Vizio was. I bought it because it was cheap and I didn't need anything fancy for the bedroom, but it's a really nice TV for the price. I would definitely check out the Vizios if you're looking to save money, Costco has pretty good deals on them.
     
  6. bobr1952 macrumors 68020

    bobr1952

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    Melbourne, FL
    #6
    I can only speak for my experience--but I did spend a lot of time looking at different options and settled on the Samsung 6800. I have the 55 inch but other sizes are available. This is an LED lit LCD with most of the features of Samsung's top of the line LCD except for 120 hrz instead of 240hrz and no 3D. I'm very happy with it--I've had it for about 2 months. It has what Samsung calls Precision Dimming which is supposed to be better than strictly edge lighting but may be more ad-hype--regardless, the backlighting is very good and evenly lit--blacks are exceptional.

    I bought mine from Amazon and was happy with their delivery service--was delivered via freight and the delivery person unpacked the TV and set it up.
     
  7. RawBert macrumors 68000

    RawBert

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    North Hollywood, CA
    #7
    Here's a great deal on a 46 from Sony. It just went on sale yesterday. $762 USD - Free Shipping/No tax (most states).
    Not the best tv ever made, but for the price you get a very good value. If price matters. I saw this at a store last week. GREAT image quality. I just bought one. Can't wait to get it. :)
     
  8. velocityg4 macrumors 68040

    velocityg4

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    #8
    I don't know if Sony has improved the upscaling. But any friend's Sony HDTV I have seen does a horrible job with SD 4:3 content. Everything was always full of artifacts.
     
  9. maflynn thread starter Moderator

    maflynn

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    #9
    I read somewhere that samsung has some good upscaling.
     
  10. No ice please macrumors 6502

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  11. einmusiker macrumors 68030

    einmusiker

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    #11
    i just picked up a 50" plasma panasonic 1080p hdtv for ~750 after taxes and i love it. its amazing what u can get nowadays

    google slickdeals
     
  12. Rapmastac1 macrumors 65816

    Rapmastac1

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    #12
    I will add in another recommendation at getting a Vizio at Costco. I have had mine for almost two years and it has been great. I use it every day and haven't had any problems. I use it as the main screen for my iMac (my iMac screen turned off - sort of), and have my PS3 connected for watching Bluray movies.

    I paid just under 700.00 at the time for a 37" 1080p set. It's nice knowing my warranty is still active with Costco, and will be for more than a year.
     
  13. maflynn thread starter Moderator

    maflynn

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    #13
    I too noticed Vizio and they also looked very nice at costco.

    The benefit of waiting until now to purchase the tv is that I hope to see some good deals as we enter into the Christmas season.
     
  14. Tomorrow macrumors 604

    Tomorrow

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    #14
    About four years ago I bought a 50" plasma. Picture quality was stellar, burn-in (actually "ghosting" - it wasn't permanent) was a complete nightmare.

    Replaced it with a 47" LCD. Picture quality is good, but not quite as good as the plasma, burn-in and ghosting are non-existent.

    My next TV will be an LCD. I dare not hook up a video game to a plasma - even the TV network logo in the bottom corner shows up for a good hour or so after you change the channel, and sports/news tickers take a day or so to go away.
     
  15. steve2112 macrumors 68040

    steve2112

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    #15
    I bought a 42" Vizio LED Razor TV a couple of months ago and I love the thing. They have two lines, one is the Razor, which is edge lit LED, and the other is called Razor True LED, which I believe is full LED backlit. The True LED may be out of your price range, but it is very nice. I got mine on sale at Sam's for around $800 total.

    One thing that puzzled me when I was shopping was the number of huge plasmas that were still 720p. I was seeing 47" and up plasmas that was still only 720p. Granted, they had great prices, but I just found it odd that they were still offering something that size without 1080. I eventually chose the LED because of weight and lower energy use.
     
  16. SlovakApple macrumors 6502

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    #16
    We have a 50'' plasma panasonic 2 months now. Not sure about the exact model but it is great. It is only HD ready but that is sufficient for me. I would not suggest buying an LG, have no good experience with their stuff.
     
  17. barr08 macrumors 65816

    barr08

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    #17
    I'm disappointed with SD on the majority of HDTVs. This issue may not be limited to Sony sets.

    I have had my Vizio 1080p 42" for almost 2 years now with absolutely no issues. Very reliable. For me, reliability is the most important thing to consider when shopping for a TV. You want to get the most years possible out of your investment, and getting work done on a TV is a pain.
     
  18. renewed macrumors 68040

    renewed

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    #18
    I have a 50" Samsung Plasma 720p in the living room. I've already had to get it repaired, something in the back sparked and set the whole damn thing on fire. It's fine now though but it was about $400 to repair. Also the network logos burn in to the lower right corner.

    I also have a 32" LCD Vizio 1080p in my room hooked up to my Xbox 360. Absolutely amazing. Great picture quality, no burn in and I've read they are good quality.

    My opinion? Avoid plasmas like the plague.
     
  19. einmusiker macrumors 68030

    einmusiker

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    #19
    I dont experience this at all
     

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