Gateway Plasma - I think I'm gonna buy it (newbie here, is this a bad choice?)

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Andrew*Jones, Dec 13, 2002.

  1. Andrew*Jones

    Andrew*Jones Extra

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    Hello,
    I have been reading these forums for awhile now trying to decide which TV to get. I was originally going to get the Samsung 3298HF (nice price and good features), but I have recently decided to go with the Gateway Plasma TV (for only $2999!). Before I commit to this purchase, I just wondered if this was a mistake? Is there any drawbacks you guys forsee with this TV? I noticed it is EDTV, what does that mean? Can it still get the HD broadcast? Yes, I have searched this forum for info on it, but I thought I would ask directly as well to see if anyone had any new thoughts on it? Also, I am thinking of buying this to save space, so please don't recommend a big projection TV instead because my living room just won't fit something like that.

    Thank You,
    Andrew
     
  2. Corey Holter

    Corey Holter Agent

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    Do yourself a favor and look at the Panasonic 42" plasma. I think the price is very close and this is the benchmark plasma in the 42" category. Panny sells both an EDTV model and an HDTV model. I believe the EDTV model can be found for around $3,500 on the web. This is the model that I have and I'm very happy with it.
     
  3. Bill Lucas

    Bill Lucas Supporting Actor

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    I believe it is based on a Sampo platform. If this is the case then yes, it's a mistake. It's not a good buy.
     
  4. Andrew*Jones

    Andrew*Jones Extra

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    Do you have the model # for the panasonic?
     
  5. Andrew*Jones

    Andrew*Jones Extra

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    Well, The Panasonic is about $1000 more (once you add shipping, etc) so I just went ahead and ordered the Gateway model. I hope I made the right choice...

    Andrew
     
  6. NickT

    NickT Stunt Coordinator

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  7. Matt_Key

    Matt_Key Agent

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    Gateway's specs say it does not do 1080i or 720p. $3k for no hdtv. The chicks will like it. [​IMG]
     
  8. TonyTone

    TonyTone Supporting Actor

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    I think there is a thread on the avsforum where the Gateway is discussed; basically, unless you're looking to buy a cheap plasma just because it's a plasma--you're better off spending a little more for the Panasonic 42" SD plasma. Yes, it only does 480p but if you plan on watching mostly DVDs and SD broadcasts, the picture quality on the SD model beats that on more than a few HD (720p or higher) models, from what I've read.
     
  9. Gregory Scott Bass

    Gregory Scott Bass Stunt Coordinator

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    I know everyone probably knows this but just in case they don't...it does not make economic sense to buy a plasma television.....with a lifespan of only 25000 hours or less before the picture is degraded significantly it is useless unless that you are either rich or it will be used soley as a hometheater monitor...if you are planning on watching tv on this I think you should pass till either the technology matures for longer life or the prices come down to a level where it does'nt matter if you have to throw it away in 4 or 5 years.
     
  10. Bill Lucas

    Bill Lucas Supporting Actor

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    Gregg,

    At 3 hours a day viewing time you'd get 25 years from a plasma *if* it lasted 25,000 hours. Hell, triple the usage and you'd still get over 8 years. How does that not make economic sense? There are other reasons to consider other technologies but your 25,000 hours argument doesn't hold water.
     
  11. Luke_Y

    Luke_Y Second Unit

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    LOL, I whipped out the calculator, crunched some numbers, and scrolled down to reply... Only to see that Bill had stolen my thunder. [​IMG]
     
  12. Dan Hine

    Dan Hine Screenwriter

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    I just helped a friend of mine install one of these last week. If I had the cash I would have spent twice as much on a 42" Panny. IMO it would have been that much worth it over the Gateway.

    The picture looked cloudy through everything but the component video inputs (well, we didn't check the VGA or DVI). I wasn't too impressed with the black levels, and the positioning of the inputs are absolutely horrible. Not to mention that the audio outputs didn't work (well, the left channel didn't) which is very important since he is using the internal tuner. It's not my money so spend how you will, but I would have passed on this item.


    Regarding the lifetime of plasmas, they last plenty long enough as others have mentioned. Also, 3yrs ago the half life on gases used in Pioneer plasmas were 30,000 hours. I find it odd that companies would change to a shorter lasting display.
     
  13. Bill Lucas

    Bill Lucas Supporting Actor

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    Luke,

    LOL!! I did the math in my head but then, I've been using CRT projectors for years and I had previously calculated that those 10,000 hour tubes would last me about 10 years at 3 hours a day. That made this one a no-brainer.
     
  14. Jim FC

    Jim FC Stunt Coordinator

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    It doesn't make economic sense to buy a Porsche, either, when you consider you can get a perfectly nice '68 Beetle and save yourself about $120 large. But Porsche seems to do pretty well, from what I hear. While they are certainly going to get cheaper and better as time goes by, there are PLENTY of folks out there for whom a plasma is worth the money. Plasmas today can look absolutely fantastic, have better brightness and viewing angle than RPTV, larger sizes than CRT, and are just darn nifty.

    Now on to the Gateway. I have not seen it yet, but the only good thing I have heard about the Gateway plasma is its price. If you are the type who buys $39 VCRs and $57 DVD players and are satisfied with your purchase, then the Gateway is the plasma for you. As in anything, you get what you pay for. I predict that if you wait a year or so, you'll be able to pick up a decent plasma (like the Panny some have mentioned) for the same price.
     
  15. Gregory Scott Bass

    Gregory Scott Bass Stunt Coordinator

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    just to clarify my statement...I was talking about for a dedicated tv use....in my house of 4 the tv set pretty much stays on all day, whether its kids watching cartoons or the wife watching cooking shows or me watching cnn and scifi [​IMG]etc....Im sure not everyone has there tv on that much but we do so it depends on your viewing habits how long a plasma will last.
     
  16. Scott Dautel

    Scott Dautel Second Unit

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    My dad ordered the Gateway 42 the day it went on sale. He received it on December 12th. Lead time is likely much longer now ... I hear demand has been strong.

    I've only spent about an hour with it, but I'm not overy impressed. Sure, the IDEA of a plasma flat panel is cool, but it just doesn't stand up for day-to-day viewing. Dad chose it mostly due to space constraints.

    Typical of plasmas, black levels aren't great. For my money, the Sharp Aquos (LCD) or the smaller Panny LCD panels are really superior here. But I've never seen a 42" LCD panel.

    My biggest beef is actually the digital compression artifacting. From the standpoint of this artifacting, EVERYTHING (including analog cable) looks like a DVD with a very low bitrate.

    I was also disappointed with the aspect ratio control. The manual suggests using the Panoramic setting for all 4:3 source material. This mode is said to perform minimal stretch in the center of the frame and more near the edges. But IMHO, everything had the "short & fat syndrome". I didn't care for it and I didn't care for the gray sidebars either ... no good solution here.

    SOUND - the internal speakers are TERRIBLE. The worst I've ever heard ... a 19", $150 TV sounds better. A big part of the problems seems to be that the small internal speakers are rear-firing (unbelieveable for a unit expected to be hung on the wall). OK, OK, OK ... I agree, who in the world would use the internal speakers on a $3K Plasma. Well, Dad wanted to, since 90% of his viewing is just cable TV and he wanted is as simple as possible for his wife... Anyway, we're off soon to get an inexpensive receiver/speaker setup

    Oh and BTW ... the remote & control menu interface is pretty bad as well.

    Final comments ... this one's not for me. For those of you still interested, Costco has matched the Gateway price with their now $3K Sampo Plasma. It's actually cheaper when you consider no $150 shipping charge.

    If I had a $3K budget, I'd stay with a nice 32" (3:4 AR) flatscreen conventianal TV for all non-HDTV broadcast material and a used DLP projector with pulldown screen for DVD, HDTV and other Wide-AR source material. Picture size here is limited only by screen size.

    Scott
     

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