Where have all the DLP RPTV's gone?

Discussion in 'Displays' started by Bob McElfresh, May 13, 2003.

  1. Bob McElfresh

    Bob McElfresh Producer

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    I've been excited about the new Samsung HLN series of DLP televisions. But I wanted to check out the competition using similar technology.

    I went to a local Andersons TV and asked about seeing a unit. They had none. The saleman said Mitsubishi and Sony considered DLP to be a failure because of too many returns. He also said that when he went to DLP training class, they gave everybody a previously-working DLP chip as hand outs. They had LOTS of them.

    Ok, so one salesman could be wrong.

    I went to Good Guys (my favorite among the chains), but I think I got some young/clueless sales guy. They had zero DLP units on the floor, but he thought a new Mitsubishi would be available in about a month. But he doubted they would even put it on the sales floor.

    This guy then pointed out a Toshiba unit (which looked very nice), but a few minutes later, confided in me that they had a lot of returns on Toshiba. I asked if they compensated for having sold a lot of Toshiba units. He looked at me confused.

    (Ok. If all HDTV have a 1% failure rate, but you sell 300 Mitsu's and 1000 Toshiba's, you will see 3 Mitsu returns and 10 Toshiba returns. More Toshiba's WERE returned, but thats because more were sold. The failure rate is the same, but this concept confused this guy.)

    Now I went to a nearby Circuit City to see what they had. Not a single DLP unit on the floor.

    So I'm beginning to wonder why have all the DLP units disappeared? Yes, they cost almost twice as much as some very good looking Toshiba, Sony and Mitsu televisions. Could that be why they are not longer being stocked?
     
  2. Jason GT

    Jason GT Second Unit

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    From someone considering a RPTV purchase (in Canada) - we're a sometimes a bit slower getting nice toys up here, but I saw a DLP set for the first time here just over a week ago. It was a Samsung 42" and it was in the neighborhood of $4500- $ 5000 CDN (About $ 4.95 USD).

    For the same price I can get a 65" Toshiba ($ 4800) or two 42" Toshibas ($2500 ea) (not that I would but I'm trying to make a point here).

    Though DLP is really cool and all, I could not really justify spending so much on a smaller set, especially if the technology is still going through some teething troubles. Maybe for a 10-15% premium I might consider the cool new technology, but not for a doulbling of price!

    So, to basically answer your question. Yes. [​IMG]
     
  3. DaveF

    DaveF Moderator
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  4. Doug_H

    Doug_H Supporting Actor

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    My local B&M told me they are selling faster than they can get them. The price of $3499 for the 50" Samsung placed is squarly in competition with the best RPTV models out there. I think a lot of people are starting to jump on this bandwagon...

    Of course I could be wrong [​IMG]
     
  5. Bob McElfresh

    Bob McElfresh Producer

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    I auditioned a Samsung for about 40 minutes, but the new model price was close to $4,000. A great looking Toshiba and Mitsu with larger viewing area were selling for about $2,700.

    I love the idea of no burn-in, lighter weight, and the simplified optics of the DLP. But it's hard to justify the extra $1,300 for something I know SHOULD be cheaper than normal CRT based televisions.
     
  6. KevinFC

    KevinFC Stunt Coordinator

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    Bob,

    So far the stores that I have seen that carry DLP sets are. Fry's, Best Buy, Ultimate and the Great Indoors. Fry's by far has the best prices on these sets and they are also willing to drop the price. They sold there last HLM series set...which had the same internals as a HLN for 2999.00 last week. Then promptly put up a HLN series set for 3799.00. This was the previous price point for there HLM set. The sales then let me know that I could get it lower due to competitor pricing here in Vegas. [​IMG] But all in all people justify plasma pricing and pay more for smaller screens and the same can be said for LCD and LCOS.
     
  7. Doug_H

    Doug_H Supporting Actor

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    I find a simple justification is how much longer a DLP TV will last than an RPTV. DLP's have no parts to wear out and are rated at 100,000 hrs however the bulbs are rated at 60,000 hrs. All of this is if you believe the manufacturers propaganda. The ability to switch a bulb by yourself is a bonus and contrary to what I have seen tossed around here the bulbs only cost 375 for the samsung.

    There is a huge amount of misinformation about these sets and most of it has been caused by the makers but over the long term, even if the numbers are much much lower than claimed the DLP will pay for itself...

    heh heh... assuming the formats and technologies don't make them obsolete. But them most of us would be sitting in the same hole if that happened.
     
  8. KevinFC

    KevinFC Stunt Coordinator

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    The bulb life is actually 8000 hrs and have been found under 200 bucks. TI claims that the chip could last some where in the neighborhood of 25-35 yrs. The DLP sets do have parts such as mirror hinges on the chip and such. Panasonic is was told discontinued there set and Mits is still selling there old Gen1 DLP set.
     
  9. Doug_H

    Doug_H Supporting Actor

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    Thanks Kevin, I meant 6,000...oops [​IMG]

    I have seen conflicting times on both of these within the same site.
     
  10. AntonS

    AntonS Stunt Coordinator

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  11. DaveF

    DaveF Moderator
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  12. ManW_TheUncool

    ManW_TheUncool Producer

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    I don't know. I saw the new Samsung 43"(?) and 50" DLP's at J&R and was not impressed. The picture looked rather noisy being fed by some Samsung DVD player, presumably w/ analog component input. I'd assume DVI w/ the new HD931 would yield better results, but should the picture really look so noisy via analog input??

    _Man_
     
  13. Bob McElfresh

    Bob McElfresh Producer

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    Well I continued my search:

    Sears - no DLP sets.

    But I walked into Cambridge Soundworks and they said "Sure, we have one in the corner". It was the same Samsung I was seeing at Best Buy!

    (My goal was to look at other manufacturers DLP.)

    But all was not a total loss. The manager was a great guy who knew a LOT about the set. He took one home and compared it to his existing RPTV and ... well basically the Samsung never left his house. (He's looking forward to getting his hands on the 61" set).

    The DLP unit was right under a Samsung Plasma and the Plasma looked grey/washed in comparison. (So much for the "DLP cannot produce good blacks" issue.) They had "Lord of the Rings" as a demo, but we switched this to "The Fifth Element" and started at the Diva scene. Over the next hour we would pause just to watch various scenes as we were over-whelmed with how good this television looked.

    He did have some observations about the Samsung:

    - The bulb is on a pull-out fixture with a sensor. He has had 2 DOA units that simply needed the fixture re-seated.

    - The DLP takes about 10 seconds to come up when you first turn it on. We assume this is to let the lamp and color-wheel to stablize.

    - If the DLP is on for hours, and you turn it off, then try and turn it on within a minute, you sometimes get a false "over-temp" error.

    Short of these quirks, his unit at home runs about 8-10 hours per day as he/his wife/family are on different schedules.
     
  14. CharlesDLP

    CharlesDLP Auditioning

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    Thought I'd clarify a few points on the HLN series DLP sets...

    DMD Chip -
    All Samsung DLP sets employ the 12-degree HD-2 Mustang panel.

    Color Wheel -
    Samsung spec's a 6 segment 2.5x color wheel. The color wheel runs at 9,000 RPM.

    Lamp -
    The 43/50" models can expect about 8,000 hours out of the 100 watt lamp. The 61" is spec'd at 6,000 hours due to its 120 watt rating. Dealers should eventually be in a position to sell the lamp, which is around $250. The parts department via 800-Samsung may quote at or above this price.

    Low Profile
    www.lowpro.net
     
  15. Don Petsche

    Don Petsche Agent

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    I'm wondering if anyone has access to sales data on DLPs?
    When I bought my Samsung HLN a week ago, I ended up with the last in store, as the in the box units sold out b4 my eyes. The store manager told me he wished he had increased inventory while supply was available. I took it from that (after we had already agreed on terms of sale) that demand for these TVs is perhaps higher than expected, and potentially out pacing supply in some areas?

    As to quality, I really like the TV, but it is very sensitive to source input. Give it a quality feed, the picture is a definite WOW, I think one of the best I've seen - definitely in this price range. Give it a weak signal, and/or a dirty power feed, and it will have the opposite effect, so bad it nearly prompted my return. I wonder how many have passed on this TV due to display of a split-on-split of a split demonstration video feed?

    Places like BB, Sears, Circuit City, aren't much for the finer points, I'm guessing - All though the BB sales team seemed to know more about this set than the other store I visited specializing in higher end equipment, who BTW only had a single HLM left, on closeout. If they can't keep them in stock, I guess what does it matter if in store display is degraded?

    Plan on spending a couple bucks for a signal booster if there is even a remote chance you'll want to hook up SD cable to the HLN.
     
  16. Elias

    Elias Stunt Coordinator

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    I just bought the Samsung 61 inch DLP (HLN617W) from Tweeter. I love it. No complaints at all. Frankly, for the price, I think DLPs are the best deal out there.

    In Baltimore, only 1 out of the 3 Tweeter locations had a HLN617W on display. The others had smaller units on display. My understanding is that the new Samsung DLP TVs are selling like hotcakes. I am so happy that I bought one before everyone started to get on the bandwagon.

    Elias
     
  17. Elias

    Elias Stunt Coordinator

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    I just bought the Samsung 61 inch DLP (HLN617W) from Tweeter. I love it. No complaints at all. Frankly, for the price, I think DLPs are the best deal out there.

    In Baltimore, only 1 out of the 3 Tweeter locations had a HLN617W on display. The others had smaller units on display. My understanding is that the new Samsung DLP TVs are selling like hotcakes. I am so happy that I bought one before everyone started to get on the bandwagon.

    Elias
     
  18. Dave E H

    Dave E H Supporting Actor

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    Bob - have you gone to Magnolia Hi Fi? There is one in San Ramon and Emeryville - well worth the trip. They are vastly more knowledgeable about products than Good Guys and should be able to help more readily. I am planning on going to check out DLP and LCD TVs in a week or so and will post what I find.

    (No, not an employee, just a satisfied customer!)
     
  19. Paul Pratt

    Paul Pratt Stunt Coordinator

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  20. Don Petsche

    Don Petsche Agent

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    I've disabled it on my player as well.

     

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