Advice Needed: ~50" HDTV

Discussion in 'Displays' started by Trav, Jan 28, 2005.

  1. Trav

    Trav Extra

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    We have a moderately sized living room, and we're looking to get a ~50" HDTV with a budget of around $3000. The TV will mainly be used for 1) DVD, 2) Video Games, and 3) Satellite TV (no HDTV receiver yet). I need advice in the following areas:

    1) Technology. I've done some basic research into the difference between CRT, DLP, Plasma, LCD, etc. I believe I am leaning towards a DLP because of (what seems to be) best cost per advantages. Specifically, I will be using the TV for playing video games and burn-in does not seem to be an issue with DLP. However, thought the picture quality seems to be very good, I am concerned about the so-called "rainbow effect" - is this really a problem or just an unnoticeable artifact? On the other hand, a rear-projection model is considerably cheaper and I'm not too concerned about viewing angles. Do the newer models still have problems with burn-in, or is it pretty safe to play video games on them now? What other adv/disadv are there between rear-projection and DLP?

    2) Extended Warranty. Normally I do get extended warranties for very pricey items like this. However, an extended warranty at Best Buy for a TV this price is $400, which is certainly no trivial amount. My question is this: since the major component to go out on a DLP TV is the lamp and this is user-replaceable and not *too* expensive, is the extended warranty still recommended? Do the manufacturer's warranty's (which seem to be about 1 year) cover in-home service if something goes wrong? Or would I need to take the TV in for service under warranty?

    3) Brands/Models. Right now, I'm leaning towards the RCA 50" DLP #HD50LPW162 which is $2500 at Best Buy right now. It seems to offer the best "bang for the buck", has DLP, HDMI, built-in tuner, and is somewhat less expensive than competing brands. With tax and 4 yr warranty, it comes to appx $3100. Other suggestions are certainly welcomed!

    Thanks for any help you can give.
    Travis
     
  2. Craig

    Craig Second Unit

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    Have you looked at the 52" JVC D-ILA? One Call has it for $2500. You might be able to get a local store to price match if you don't want to buy online. They have a 3 year extended warranty for $189 and say they'll refund half the warranty if you never use it.

    I haven't seen the D-ILA myself, just thought you might want to take a look at it if you haven't already. I've bought several things from One Call and have always gotten great service. You may have to click on the button that says 'todays best price', they have it listed at $3500, but will sell it for $2500.

    JVC 52"
     
  3. Trav

    Trav Extra

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    Hmmm, that's a pretty tempting deal. Best Buy has that JVC for $2849, so the $2499 price at Onecall is $350 cheaper! Plus, there's no tax... but shipping is $156 so that pretty much cancels that out. On the other hand, the extended warranty is still cheaper ($189 for 3 yr and $269 for 4 yr). The JVC is also 2" larger, neglible though that may be.

    So doing a price comparison looks something like this:

    RCA 50" DLP (Model# HD50LPW162)
    $2500 TV
    $400 4 YR WARRANTY
    $188 APPX TAX (do they charge tax on ext warranty????)
    ====================
    $3088 TOTAL

    JVC 52" D-ILA (Model# HD52Z575)
    $2850 TV (Best Buy)
    $400 4 YR WARRANTY
    $214 APPX TAX
    ====================
    $3464 TOTAL

    JVC 52" D-ILA (Same as above)
    $2500 TV (One Call)
    $189 3 YR WARRANTY
    $156 SHIPPING
    =====================
    $2845

    JVC 52" D-ILA (Same as above)
    $2500 TV (One Call)
    $269 4 YR WARRANTY
    $156 SHIPPING
    =====================
    $2925 TOTAL

    COMMENTS:

    The BIG question that remains is whether the JVC is a better TV than the RCA? It's 52" versus 50", so that counts for something, but not really a consideration in the grand scheme of things. Is the 3-chip D-ILA on the JVC superior to the DLP on the RCA. I believe the documentation states that the JVC avoids the "rainbow effect" so that could be a consideration if the RCA exhibits it.

    At Best Buy, the two TV's are about $350 difference. But whether that difference equates to differences in quality/features is not clear - or is the RCA just more affordable?

    Thanks for your help,
    Travis
     
  4. Trav

    Trav Extra

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    I found the JVC 52" (HD-52z575) at Buydig.com for $2319 plus no tax and no shipping. That's a HUGE difference when compared to Best Buy, which is selling is for $2849 plus tax.

    Here's a price comparison:

    Best Buy = $2849 + $200 tax = $3049
    OR
    Best Buy = $2849 + 200 tax + 400 4yr Warr = $3449
    Buydig = $2319

    So if I can get the JVC for $2319 and not buy a warranty, I'm taking a chance. A replacement lamp is $250 (I called) and that would probably be the main thing to go bad. Buydig is a reputable dealer as they have very good reseller ratings and I have purchased from them before.

    However, I have a another question about warranties. Do the 1 year manufacturer's warranty have in-home service, or do you have to take it to an authorized service center? I checked on Jvc.com for repair centers and the nearest one is about 2.5 hours away!! So even if I have a repair under regular warranty, does this mean I have to take the TV there?

    Now then, Buydig does offer a MACK extended warranty which is for 3 years and says "on-site". So does this mean the manufactuer's warranty covers for the first year and then MACK for an *additional* 3 years, or is the MACK just 3 years from date of purchase??? And would I still have to take the TV in for repair at a center during the 1st year? I'm confused on all of these warranty policies and costs!

    Please help! :)
    Travis
     
  5. Craig

    Craig Second Unit

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    If you click on the MACK warranty, it says it is for an additional 3 years and it is in-house. Usually the manufacturers warranty includes in-house service for large TVs, I don't think you'll have to worry about bringing it in yourself.
     
  6. Trav

    Trav Extra

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    Thanks for the clarification - I wasn't sure if the Manufacturer's warranty was in-home or not. So do you think that sounds like a pretty good deal? $2319 + $200 for the 3 yr MACK? = $2519. The JVC seems to have gotten pretty good reviews - seems to be brighter than most DLP's but perhaps not as good blacks.
     
  7. Alf S

    Alf S Banned
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    Here's my recent post about the Mitsubishi WD-52725 my parents just got:

     
  8. Trav

    Trav Extra

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    I'm very close to getting the JVC from Buydig.com. I just want to make sure that the 1 YR manufacturer's warranty is on-site??? I don't see any mention on either website (JVC or Buydig). I'll most likely be purchasing the 3 YR MACK extended warranty, which is on-site but I want to make sure about that 1st year. Does anyone know for sure? Does the retailer have to be an "authorized dealer"? How do I know if Buydig is an authorized dealer or not?
     
  9. Alf S

    Alf S Banned
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    First off Buydig isn't an authorized retailer..see their (JVC) site: DEALERS

    Second, there's no way I'd buy such a delicate and large TV online for fear of screwed up shipment (damages to sensitive electronics) plus the fact that if you hate the TV OR it's messed up, you're screwed and will end up paying out the nose to return it...Seems SO not worth the trouble just to save a few bucks initially.

    I'd stay LOCAl and have someone like Sears etc. price match and then you're in a way better position if you have to get it fixed or returned.

    Just my nickels worth.

    Alfer
     
  10. Trav

    Trav Extra

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    Thanks for the advice Alfer. I spent the day looking around locally and trying to get the best deal. Currently, I'm deciding between these two deals:

    1) RCA 50" DLP (HD-50LPW162)

    BEST BUY: It's on sale this week for $2369. I was able to get them down to $2224. With 4 yr warranty and tax, it came to $2785. I like the idea that this one has the built-in HD tuner so I can use an antenna to get my locals. I have Dish Network with SD programming right now and I'm not sure when I'll be able to upgrade receivers and programming.

    2) JVC 52" HD-ILA (HD-52Z575)

    Ultimate Electronics (local): I was able to get them down to $2770 with 3 YR warranty and tax included. 1 year less warranty than Best Buy, but it's also a more expensive TV than the RCA, so it's probably a better deal. But no built-in tuner, so I wouldn't have any HD channels until I upgrade Dish receivers (or buy a separate tuner, not desirable). However, I'd still be able to enjoy DVD (which is what I do most anyway) and my Xbox.

    American TV (local): I took my UE quote into American and they beat it by $50, so their total was $2720 with 3 YR warranty and tax included. Both of these deals are about $200-250 more expensive than the Buydig.com option, BUT *much* better than the sale prices they were advertising in the store. For example, the JVC was $2850 on sale at Ultimate and that's without warranty and tax.

    QUESTIONS:

    1) What are your comments regarding the difference between these two sets?

    2) Is it worth an extra $200-250 to buy locally rather than over the Internet. What is the consequence of buying at an online store that is not an authorized dealer? Would I still get in-home service with the 1 year manufacturer's warranty?

    3) I'm still open to any other alternatives and/or suggestions. I'll probably be making a decision in the next day or two, so any help you can offer is appreciated!

    Thanks,
    Travis
     
  11. Alf S

    Alf S Banned
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    I don't know if I'd trust the RCA brand based on their poor track record..Just read www.hometheaterspot.com forum (RCA area) to see what kind of complaints are floating around.

    No idea about the JVC..I'd Google the model# to see what reviews you can dig up.

    My parents just bought the Mitusishi 52725 w/ 5 year warranty from Ultimate and they were more than happy to price match a sale price I found online. Ultimate has the Mitsu 52525 DLP available and it would easily fit your price range I'd bet..just find a legit online dealers lowest price and print it ..then bring it in and negotiate with Ultimate to get the best deal. Worth a shot.

    Go luck!
     
  12. Elinor

    Elinor Supporting Actor

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    >"No idea about the JVC..I'd Google the model# to see what reviews you can dig up."

    There is a member at AVS forums who is extremely highly regarded, whose opinion of the JVC unit is that it is utter trash. There are few people online whose opinion I trust as much as this person.

    I'm not saying "Believe it" ... just do a search over at AVS on the JVC set, and read about it.
     
  13. Trav

    Trav Extra

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    What about the RCA? What does this "highly regarded" person think of it?
     
  14. Elinor

    Elinor Supporting Actor

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  15. Steve Griswold

    Steve Griswold Stunt Coordinator

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    For as long as I can remember, RCA has always been at the bottom rung of the ladder in terms of reliability. I've had 2 RCA CRT televisions quit on me after a couple years, and two of my friends have had the same thing happen.

    Is it possible for a company to revamp their QC? Certainly. Is it likely that I'll trust and/or recommend RCA products to anyone in the near future? Probably not.

    Once RCA establishes a firm track record of reliability on par with Panasonic or Toshiba, I wouldn't advocate spending any money on their products.
     

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