Recommended screen size?

Discussion in 'Displays' started by Shea, Jul 30, 2003.

  1. Shea

    Shea Stunt Coordinator

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    I couldn't find a thread relating to this so here goes. I am trying to figure out what size of a widescreen to get. I'll be sitting about 7-8 feet from the screen. I read on a Cnet buyers guide> http://reviews.cnet.com/4520-6463_7-....html?tag=tnav I could get anything from a 47" to a 60".. However measuring it looks like the biggest that could fit where I'll be putting it is 51". Been looking at Hitachis and 51" Hitachi looking at the dimensions would just fit. Talking to a guy at Circuit City, it sounded like anything not below 50" would be too big for that distance..Because that big your eyes would be having to jerk from one side of the screen to the other and would give you headaches.

    What screen size would you guys recommend being 7-8 or so feet from the screen?
     
  2. Jeff Gatie

    Jeff Gatie Lead Actor

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    The guy at Circuit City has no clue. I sit 7 feet eyeball to screen from a 56" and could not be happier. 51" would be fine, if not a little small.
     
  3. Jason Charlton

    Jason Charlton Ambassador

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    The material you're watching has a lot to do with the optimal seating distance. A nice progressive-scan or HD feed will allow you to sit much closer without straining your eyes too much.. On the other hand, larger screens reveal a lot more of the image defects and shortcomings of the NTSC broadcast standard, so when it comes to SD material, a lot of people feel a smaller display produces a "cleaner" overall picture.

    Personally, I have an 11 1/2 foot seating distance and am awaiting delivery of a 57" set. I have the room for a larger 65" set, but when auditioning the sets at stores, I asked the salespeople to feed it a SD signal and I watched from my correct distance. IMO, the SD picture on the larger set was just too grainy for my taste. DVD's looked spectacular on both, but I wanted better than average performance on SD material as well. Based on my experiences, I would think at 7-8 feet you're best bet would be no larger than 50-51" - Panasonic has a nice 47 incher that produces a very good picture.

    Whatever you decide, do yourself a favor and make sure you see what SD material looks like on the set. If the salespeople won't or can't provide you with that test, shop elsewhere.

    -Jason
     
  4. Shea

    Shea Stunt Coordinator

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    Thanks for the opinions..anyone else have opinions to throw in? Right now I'm definitely leaning towards the $1999 Hitachi..But if I decide to go a little smaller that Panasonic I think is around $1500.
     
  5. Craig Robertson

    Craig Robertson Supporting Actor

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    check out the viewing distance calculator here.
     
  6. Cameron Yee

    Cameron Yee Executive Producer
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    I sit 8 ft from my 42" Tohsiba. I almost bought a 47" Panasonic but I'm happy with the size-distance combination with the 42". Most of my viewing is of DVDs and IMHO a larger set and/or closer viewing distance would reveal too many of the imperfections. HD programming is a different story though.
     
  7. Cary_H

    Cary_H Second Unit

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    I sit 8 1/2 feet from my 50" Toshiba.
    I have no idea how decent my cable signal is, but I am too close at this distance IMO. If I sit off to the side at an angle to the screen, even just a couple or three feet farther, I find the PQ more than acceptable.
    For DVDs I could get away closer if it didn't mess up my audio set-up.
    I can't agree with the suggestion that going much larger than 50" at this distance will have your eyes hunting too badly and causing you headaches. You'd have to go significantly larger before that'll become an issue.
    Like most of the previous suggestions, I recommend you base your purchase on whether you can live with the PQ at this distance with a normal cable signal.
     
  8. Mitch Stevens

    Mitch Stevens Supporting Actor

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    I don't know what most of these people are talking about. Most of my research has led me to believe that 1.5 times the size of the TV is the perfect place to sit. I own a 65" Widescreen HDTV, and and I sit 8 feet away (which is exactly the perfect viewing distance).

    I find that at 8 feet away, 65" is perfect. I can't imagine how tiny the image must look, if you own a 45" TV and are sitting 13 feet away! Damn! 45" is really tiny, and 13 feet away, is extremely too far!
     
  9. Josh~H

    Josh~H Stunt Coordinator

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    I also have a Tosh 42", and I sit about 8' away. At that distance the picture looks absolutely incredible, and my eyes don't get strained. Supposedly I'm not experiencing as "immersive" an experience as I should, but I think it's perfect -- that's all that matters for me.

    I specifically did not purchase a larger TV (I was going to go with a 50") because in my price range the image looked noticably worse on the larger sets.
     
  10. Paul.Little

    Paul.Little Stunt Coordinator

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    When you go to the theater, do your eyes jerk back and forth and give you a headache? The apparent screen size in a movie theater is probably more than double a 51" viewed from 8 feet away.

    Go in and look at the 51" TV you like. Ask the salesman for a chair. Sit down the same distance as you will be at home. Stay there and watch for 20 minutes or so. What do you think? Is that the right size for you? Make sure you can look at cable TV or regular satellite as well as DVD and HDTV. This will be the real test of if the screen is too big, or not.
     

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