New to home theater...looking for a TV

Discussion in 'Displays' started by ClemsonSCJ, Dec 6, 2013.

  1. ClemsonSCJ

    ClemsonSCJ Auditioning

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    Hi everyone, I'm new here and new the the world of home theater sytems. My fiance and I are remodeling a house that my parents are letting us rent out and her parents are wanting to get us a nice TV and my parents I think are going to get us the surround sound for Christmas. I've tried doing as much research as I can on a good LED TV and about the best information I've gotten out of it is that Samsung, Sony, and LG are about the 3 best options. We're looking for a 55" and not much more than $1,500 if any. I've got Apple TV so I'd rather not waste the money on a smart TV and have that money put more on the quality of the picture if that's possible at all. I tried researching about how all the "local dimming" and backlighting and all that works but it's just too overwhelming. I was just hoping maybe you guys could help me out on my first home theater purchase to get me started. If you need any more specifics about what I'm looking for just let me know and thanks in advance for any help!
     
  2. schan1269

    schan1269 HTF Expert
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  3. Jason Charlton

    Jason Charlton Ambassador

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    I'll second Sam's recommendation (particularly if image quality really is a priority for you - that pretty much demands you go with plasma). It's hard to find a TV that's NOT smart and ISN'T 3D - those just sort of come with the territory. But remember, just because the TV has those features, doesn't mean you have to use them.

    The overwhelming part of shopping for LCD displays (yes, all "LED" displays are really "LCD technology, only lit using LEDs") is really due to all the tricks and gimmicks that LCD displays have to employ to overcome their inherent deficiencies - namely poor black levels and slow response/update time. Neither of these are issues with a decent plasma (Panasonic is king -- while they're available, and Samsung Plasmas are highly regarded, too).
     
  4. ClemsonSCJ

    ClemsonSCJ Auditioning

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  5. schan1269

    schan1269 HTF Expert
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    Did you not click the link?

    If you care about the 3" of "bulk" and want the 1" of "sleek", go right ahead and buy the inferior in every single other way LCD.
     
  6. schan1269

    schan1269 HTF Expert
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  7. Type A

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    Welcome to the forum Andrew. :)

    Most will recommend plasma if picture quality is requested, myself included. Yes theyre a little heavier, and a bit thicker, but thats not enough that I would let that sway my decision.
     
  8. ClemsonSCJ

    ClemsonSCJ Auditioning

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    Ok I'll take back my comment about picture quality being top priority. Priority number 1 is a TV that will last more than 5-6 years. Priority 2 is a TV that, if I have to order, I don't have to worry about some careless individuals turning it at an angle different than 90 degrees. Priority 3 is a TV that isn't on its way to being obsolete. Priority 4 is picture quality.
     
  9. schan1269

    schan1269 HTF Expert
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    Priority 1. Plasma wins
    Priority 2. Neither wins (UPS doesn't ship TVs over 40". And a 55" LCD and 55" plasma ship the same way, upright banded to a skid)
    Priority 3. Not heard of OLED? LCD will be dead by 2015. So guess you won't be buying a TV until OLED makes it to $1500 at 55". See you in 2016.
    Priority 4. plasma wins.

    So...plasma wins.

    By the way, current "LED" Samsung/Vizio marketing hooey has people thinking "this LED" is different than LCD. It isn't. And the Samsung "tech people" trolling Best Buys have been overheard saying "Yeah, LED is the step before OLED". That is no-where even close to accurate.

    OLED has more in common with plasma, than it does LCD.
     
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  10. Type A

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    Since youre new to this addiction hobby we should save you the headaches now: give up on priority 3. Just invest in the best your budget will allow and be happy.

    Save buying names you dont recognize (low tier gear), priority 1 shouldnt be a problem. Every manufacture has lemons, even the best. Manufacture defects are still very much a reality today but stick with a name you know and this will lessen your chances of running into these issues or experiencing a short life span. Based on the manufactures mentioned in this thread you should have no problem getting 5-6+ years out of your new TV.
     
  11. ClemsonSCJ

    ClemsonSCJ Auditioning

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    Okie dokie then let me rephrase my title and original question all together..."...Looking for LED TV...Not Plasma"So that being said, and plasma out of the question, any suggestions for LED's?By the way, I've been asking around to all the friends and family that I know of that have ever owned a Plasma and they all have had to replace them in a max of 5 years. One of them lasted 6. Our living room LCD is a good 5 years old and our bonus room LCD is about 8 years old. Plasma may be better in every way shape or form but I've heard too many person experience stories in the last day to outweigh any specs on paper.
     
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  13. ClemsonSCJ

    ClemsonSCJ Auditioning

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    Thanks for the links. I'll check them out when I can get on a computer.
     
  14. Jim Mcc

    Jim Mcc Producer

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    You should go to the library also and read Consumer Reports. They have the TV ratings and the repair histories.
     
  15. Gregg Loewen

    Gregg Loewen Video Standards Instructor, THX Ltd.
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    hi

    at your price point of $1500 you will have lots of options.

    For the LG models, look for THX certification, this will mean the best viewing angle (which is the biggest complaint against LED).

    for all models, try to view before you buy and look to see how it looks off axis.

    You will want an LED with localized dimming.

    I think that anybody that is looking for a 5 year plus display life is not living in current reality (though your mileage my vary...good luck!)

    have fun!!

    Gregg
     
  16. AndyMcKinney

    AndyMcKinney Cinematographer

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    Is "region-free" viewing (i.e. PAL DVDs or European 1080i/50hz Blu-rays) a priority? If so, that eliminates Panasonic and Samsung from the equation, as they "lock" their US television sets to work only with U.S. framerates.

    In my own in-store testing, Sharp is the "multi-system compatibility" king (you can even play PAL VHS through composite on Sharps), but several other brands allow PAL/1080i/50 compatibility, too (Vizio, and the LG and Sony sets I tested). Of course, you'd also need a blu-ray player that outputs 50hz signals at 50hz, rather than converting them (such as an Oppo).

    If you're only going to be watching Region 1 NTSC/Region A 60hz discs, then the field is wide open.
     
  17. Stephen_J_H

    Stephen_J_H All Things Film Junkie
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    Just remember that "LED" TV is still LCD and subject to the inherent deficiencies of that format; it's labeled LED because of the backlighting method. As someone who earlier this year moved a 40" LCD to my living room and replaced it with a 50" 3D Panny plasma in my home theatre, I would never go back to LCD. From here, the next upgrade will likely be to projector or OLED
     
  18. ManW_TheUncool

    ManW_TheUncool Producer

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    If long life is priority, I'd probably strongly prefer Panasonic over the rest.

    _Man_
     
  19. Dave Moritz

    Dave Moritz Producer
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    I would say Samsung, Sony and Panasonic and I would stay far far away from LG IMHO.
     
  20. Dave Moritz

    Dave Moritz Producer
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    Hey Jim I would take anything Consumer Reports says with a grain of salt. They have been caught taking money from companies for one and two regarding tv's. These are the same people that a few years back tried to say an LG HDTV was just as good as a Pioneer Elite Kuru, ya right! For me it is hard to trust anything Consumer Reports says especially when I see reports or comparisons I know are wrong or skewed. I put more stock in people who actually own the product than I do Consumer Reports.
     

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