Building a cheap HT, need television advice.

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Eddie Wimberly, Dec 26, 2001.

  1. Eddie Wimberly

    Eddie Wimberly Stunt Coordinator

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    Hello all, this is my first post in this site. I must say, it is most impressive.
    I am a PC enthusiast. I frequent www.madonion.com and have built 3 PC's from the advice of the readers there.
    This Christmas I helped my father set up an all in 1 RCA home theater from Radio Shack. I must say, I was not impressed but I believe my father was happy with it. He also gave me a Memorex DVD player (I forgot the model number, it's at home) with Episode 1 and Goonies on DVD.
    When I got home, I wanted to open that DVD player and watch something. However, I started thinking "I wonder if there is a site out there that is informative about PC's as madonion is, but with Home Theater?" I started looking and arrived here.
    This site is amazing. I'm glad I never cracked the box on that DVD player, because I'm going to return it for sure [​IMG]
    After looking around here a bit, I've decided to purchase a cheap home theater system. Here is what I'm leaning towards.
    Kenwood VR-509 Reciever - 290.00
    JBL NSP1 5 piece home cinema package - 269.00
    Sony SA-WM40 Subwoofer - 140.00
    Toshiba SD-4700 DVD Player - 215.00
    The prices above are listed off of etronics.com.
    Basically I'm writing here to get some recommendations as to which television I should purchase. I'm looking for something about 27 inches, because it will fit into my little entertainment center. Also, I wanted to run my purchase by everyone before I typed in my credit card number. You never know when someone will perk up and post "NO!!! Don't buy that!!!".
    Any recommendations as to where I should purchase these items for the best price would also be welcome, as well as someone explaining the Sears internet ad scam I've heard a few people mention.
    I thank you all for your time and eagerly await your response. I am at work after all, what else am I gonna do? [​IMG]
     
  2. Michael Mathius

    Michael Mathius Supporting Actor

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    Welcome to our addiction.[​IMG][​IMG][​IMG]
    Your choices are good, especailly the sony sub for your budget. If you can scratch up an additional $250 then I would seriously look at the Energy Take 5.2. They really sound good for the size. I beleive that the speakers are what you will enjoy most in your system so don't be afraid to spend most off your budget on them.
    I think that the Toshiba 4700 was a progressive dvd player, so I'd look at interlace players instead and put the extra money toward my speakers.
    As far as tv's are concern I have sonys 13", 32" and 53"HDTV so my suggestion is obvious. But I would definately not let my entertainment center limit my tv size choices.
     
  3. Marc Rochkind

    Marc Rochkind Second Unit

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    For TVs, in the small sizes you can go one of these ways, depending on what you want to spend. This is all for 4:3 TVs; I'm assuming 16:9 is over your budget.

    1. Analog TV.

    2. Analog TV with vertical compression (widescreen mode) for watching anamorphic DVDs.

    3. Digital TV, with or without vertical compression.

    Personally, I would never buy a 4:3 TV without vertical compression. There are some excellent analog Sony WEGAs that fit the bill, such as the 36FS13 for around $1200. I think there are some smaller WEGAs for less money, too.

    But make sure it has vertical compression!

    If you can afford it, Samsung has some great digital TVs for under $1000. I have a 27" Samsung digital that's terrific. But, it has a very wide cabinet because of some big speakers, so it won't fit where most other 27" TVs will.

    I would buy lots of things from Internet sites, but not a TV, because with most sites they are not returnable, even if they don't work.
     
  4. Eddie Wimberly

    Eddie Wimberly Stunt Coordinator

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    Thanks for the advice, but I need some serious help when it comes to TV's.

    I assume the 4:3 is the aspect ratio? That would mean the set is wider than it is tall? That's fine with me, I'm all about widescreen.

    However, I still don't understand which TV I should lean to. Is there a thread on this somewhere or a place I can do more research on this?
     
  5. Michael Cook

    Michael Cook Stunt Coordinator

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    Eddie 4:3 ratio is your standard TV. 16:9 would be a wide screen. With your limited space, a 4:3 would probably be your only bet. You might want to measure your entertainment center to see what you have to work with. You don't want to come home with a TV that won't fit. I would look at the sony Wega flat screens. Only problem with them is they might be too big. What type of money are you looking to spend?
     
  6. Jim Carr

    Jim Carr Stunt Coordinator

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    Mike, I'm new here as well... and fully ADDICTED already! [​IMG]
    One piece of advice I can offer you is after your research just be happy with your decision and knowing you got the best you could afford for your individual tastes. Like the computer world.. Home Theather moves fast! There is always somthing out there bigger and better.
    So evaluate your financial situation and your needs and make the best decision using all the vast knowledge of this site.
    Good luck man!
    Jim
     
  7. Eddie Wimberly

    Eddie Wimberly Stunt Coordinator

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    Probably 500 to 1000, or less if there is something lower that gives a lot of bang for the buck. However, from what I have been reading this price range is going to be bottom of the barrel. I could be talked into saving and buying something more expensive if there is an overwhelming advantage to having it.

    Bascally I'm just looking for something that everyone agrees is an excellent buy, and gives you a lot for your money, but won't cost a billion dollars.
     
  8. Michael Cook

    Michael Cook Stunt Coordinator

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  9. DanaA

    DanaA Screenwriter

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    I learned something today about a way to save money on buying a TV, so I'll pass it on to you. I was looking to buy a new 25-27" TV for my 9 year old daughter, who basically uses it for her Nintendo 64 and videos. I looked at all the ads and visited Best Buys and Circuit City before almost giving up. I decided to give Sears a shot. I figured I could see what they had in stock, then go on the internet for online dealers and go back to Sears for a price match. After looking around for a while, a salesman came over and asked if he could help. I explained my situation and said I preferred to spend under $400 dollars. The salesman told me it would be hard to get anything really good with the imputs I needed for my daughter. He then took me downstairs where they kept things like their returns. We found a nice 27" Panasonic, which was "on sale" for $399 upstairs and the price here was only $228. The reason was that the instruction book and remote were missing (never asked him why they were missing), but that the TV itself had never been used. They clearly mark TV's that were returns or had been display models. It came with the full warranty and the usual 30 day return policy. I took it home and it plays great for my daughter's needs. I downloaded the manual from Panasonics web site and ordered a replacement remote for $24 including shipping. I saved probably 35-40% off their After Christmas Sale price by doing it this way. And, by the way, there were quite a few nice sets down there.
     
  10. Chris PC

    Chris PC Producer

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    To tide you over, I would suggest a D series JVC 27" TV or even the 27" a model below the D series. I have the JVC 32" D series and the picture is great. It'll do until I make the move to 16:9 HDTV later on....
     
  11. Eddie Wimberly

    Eddie Wimberly Stunt Coordinator

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    Well, I went down to Sears today and picked up a Sony Wega 27" KV27FS13. It was listed as $550, I got it for $500 (~10% off), 524.69 after tax.

    I looked online before buying and the cheapest I could find this set was around $550, and that didn't include shipping. Did I get a good deal on this set?

    I asked the associate if they had any out of box models and he said no. He also said they would only mark them down 10-20% depending on how much damage was done to the unit. I also asked if he would price match an internet ad (before I purchased the TV). He told me Sears used to do that, but they recently stopped because people were bringing all sorts of crazy internet ads.

    I also rode around to Best Buy and Circuit City looking for deals on the rest of the stuff I want to buy. They told me to try back after a few days, there would be many more returned items to choose from.

    Basically, I want to know if I got a good deal on this or not. It will hurt if someone posts an ad for this TV for less, but I can take it.
     
  12. DanaA

    DanaA Screenwriter

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    Hi Wimberly,
    First off, if Sears no longer matches online prices, that is a very, very new development. I have an ad in my hand from 5 days ago saying they will match online prices if the price, including shipping, handling, and delivery, is less than that of Sears on an item that Sears has in stock. Consequently, I have to assume that either the policy just changed in the last couple of days or the salesman was wrong.
    Oh well, I personally like the Sony Wega, at least what I've seen in showrooms, but apparently a few are dissatisfied with a geometrical distortion problem in the sets. I have linked a page where people give a wide range of opinions on the set, mostly positive, in case you'd like to read what others have to say. Since Sears has a 30 day return policy, I'd judge your own opinion highest. Live with the set a couple of weeks and see how it works out for you. If you don't like it, return it. There are always good deals out there and, if I recall correctly, January is a great time to buy electronics. Personally, I hope you love the TV and it meets your every need.
    Link:http://www.audioreview.com/reviews/T...ct_49592.shtml
     
  13. David X

    David X Stunt Coordinator

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    Eddie:
    If you like the set and it has the inputs and features that you need, then you got a good deal. Buying electronics is like buying a computer. Next week or next month, your set will be cheaper somewhere else and the next big thing will be out, so don't sweat minor price differences. I looked at the feature set on that model, and it has 2 s-video inputs, 1 component video input, 16:9 mode with compression. From the specs, it looks like a decent set.
    About Sears:
    Somebody, somewhere posted a link to Sear's price matching policy, but the link didn't work because it included session id tags and stuff like that, so I broke it down to the parts that were necessary to get it to work.
    Sears price matching policy
    Sear's price matches with a limited number of established (and usually expensive) online merchants, including amazon.com, crutchfield, bestbuy.com, etc. Online price match doesn't apply to people like me that live in Hawaii, AK or PR.
    They will also price match with local b&m stores (also very useless on Kauai.)
    They usually put stuff on sale at 10% off, so you can usually ask for that and sometimes you might get it on the spot.
    -David
     
  14. Eddie Wimberly

    Eddie Wimberly Stunt Coordinator

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    Thanks for clearing up the Sears price match thing. Now that I know they still price match, where is a good place to look for low prices? I've been to etronics and J&W.

    Also, what is this Velocity Modulation option on this TV that is on by default? Everyone on audioreview is saying it is horrible and should never have been offered. What does it do?
     

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