Getting my first "big" TV, need suggestions.

Discussion in 'Displays' started by joe_pre, May 4, 2006.

  1. joe_pre

    joe_pre Agent

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    Ok, I've started to do a lot of reading, but there is a lot to wade through so bear with me here. I have two basic questions about buying my first big TV. It involves suggestions for which model/brand and the other involves how to get the best picture from which cables/hookups. I'm looking for the best 'bang' for my buck and figured this is the perfect place to ask.

    After reading, here is what I narrowed my looking down to:

    $1500-$2500 price range
    Atleast 40 inch
    Plasma, DLP or LCD
    - I hear plasma has a good viewing angle, not really worried about burn-in.
    - DLP they say has the rainbow effect, not sure how worried I should be.
    - Kind of concerned about long term cost of lamp replacement in DLP & LCD
    1080p
    built-in HDTV Tuner
    widescreen
    HDMI along with composite hookups (see below)

    Now here is what I am concerned about hooking into it. I'm not sure the best way to hook this all up. I'll have a Dish DVR, looking into getting a better receiver, getting a newer DVD player, xbox and CD player. I'd like to utilize the HDMI, since I've heard it provides fantasic quality. My guess is that only one device could use it, so how do I hook it all up to get the best quality and be able to switch back and forth between stuff. I'm hoping newer receivers (my current one is old) contain things that will help with that. I will also have a nice surround sound system along with this so I'd like to be able to switch between video inputs, while keeping the surround sound on for whichever video input I am using.

    I know this seems like a general query. I tried to be as specific as possible. I'm looking for some guidance/suggestions/tips that may help me make some decisions I won't regret down the road. I'd be happy to answer any followup questions that may help with getting some answers. Even to be pointed in the right direction would help. Thanks for anyone's time involved. I know your time is valuable and it is appreciated.
     
  2. Adam_R

    Adam_R Second Unit

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    I wouldn't be so worried about lamp costs. I think you're talking about $300 every few years if you have very heavy use.

    LCD: I personally hate the look of the LCD rear projection TVs. The Screendoor effect bugs the crap out of me. I'd personally stay away. Other than that, they are nice.

    Plasma: Plasma is nice, but the burn-in scares me. Not to mention the price tag per inch of TV. Too expensive for me.

    DLP: The rainbow effect is only seen by some people so go to the store and look. Also, the newer models with faster color wheels have lower occurance of rainbow.

    As far as 1080p goes, it is the future of HD. (HD-DVD, Bluray, PS3) The problem is most 1080p sets these days (including all SXRD models) do NOT accept a 1080p signal, they just upconvert to 1080p.

    I would look at the new DLP Samsung 87 series. The smallest one is 50" and supports 1080p input. It has the new DLP 5 color wheel. Retail is $2699. It looks like a great set with tons of features:

    1080p input capable
    HD Tuner built in
    2 HDMI
    2 Component
    2 Composite/SVideo
    PC input (15 pin)
    Small, beautiful cabinet
    No burn in
    No convergance errors


    Have a look: http://www.samsung.com/Products/TV/D...S5087WXXAA.asp

    As far as cable go, buy good cables, but don't waste your money on the most expensive stuff, *cough* monster cables *cough*. They are a COMPLETE waste of money unless you are a serious audio/videophile. Buy the "good" stuff like Acoustic Research. Don't completely cheap out on the Radio Shack crap either. Make sure that your cables are video shielded.

    Good luck!
     
  3. Robert Hoffman

    Robert Hoffman Stunt Coordinator

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    If you settle for a 42", you won't need 1080P. You don't really need it either at 50" (unless you plant to sit closer than say 6 feet from the TV). I like my plasma (NEC 50xr5). Awesome viewing angle, no risk of burn-in (there really isn't at all with the new Plasmas), beautiful picture, no rainbows, no screen-doors. It's got everything I need.
     
  4. joe_pre

    joe_pre Agent

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    Those Samsung DLP's look very promising. I'm really thinking I should get the 1080p. I am thinking I'll be keeping this TV for a good 10-15 years(hopefully), so I'd really like to be future proof. Do they make 1080p plasma's (could be a dumb question)? I'm just wrestling over my dilemma:

    DLP - could get a bigger set (61")
    - replace lamp every 3 years or so at about $350 a pop. Comes out to be in the neighborhood of atleast $1000 extra over 10 years that I wouldn't have with the plasma
    - has 1080p so I'd be future proof

    Plasma - Smaller set (50")
    - Long life (25+ years)
    - 1080p?
    - Probably will look better
    - No lamp replacement

    Darn tough dilemma. Anyone else have any thoughts on this? I'm leaning toward plasma, but I want to make sure I get a nice one, even if it mean't spending up to $3500 for it. I don't want to make any regrets. Thanks again!
     
  5. Robert Hoffman

    Robert Hoffman Stunt Coordinator

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    You're not going to get a 1080p plasma for $3500. I don't think they're even available yet (although some of the newer models will accept 1080p...they just scale the image).

    For $3500, you'd probably want to get one of the new Panasonic 50" plasmas (if you go that route). I think the NECs are still a little closer to $4000, and Pioneer would likely be out of your range. There are some cheaper plasmas out there, but most everything I've read indicates that the Panasonic is decidedly better than those brands (Samsung, Phillips, Maxent, Hitachi, etc...).
     
  6. joe_pre

    joe_pre Agent

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    So then is a non 1080p plasma better than a 1080p DLP? That is now my dilemma.
     
  7. joe_pre

    joe_pre Agent

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    I was reading that Samsung has a model out that instead of a color wheel uses LED lights that is supposed to be even better with a longer replacement life. Anyone heard anything on that? Also I think I read someone ordered the 61" in the DLP 87 Samsung series. Wondering what they thought of it. Can't decide! Getting frustrated!
     
  8. Robert Hoffman

    Robert Hoffman Stunt Coordinator

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    Can't help you there. I wouldn't get too caught up on the 1080p thing and instead go for the functionality that you need. I needed something with a wide viewing angle and small profile so I went the way of Plasma.
     
  9. Joseph DeMartino

    Joseph DeMartino Lead Actor

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    Joe:

    You might want to consider the LCD projection variant LCoS (Liquid Crystal on Silcon.) Pretty much eliminates the screen door effect, no rainbow effect, no burn-in. JVC markets their LCoS sets as the HD-ILA line, available in both 720p and 1080p from 42" up to 61" if memory serves. Sony's LCoS sets are the 1080p 50" and 61" SXRDs. Both are significantly more expensive than the JVC sets, although I understand that additional SXRD sets in other sizes and at lower prices points are on the way. True, the bulbs will cost you a few bucks over time. But less than the difference in price between a plasma and an LCoS set today, not to mention the "opportunity cost" of not leaving that money in the bank until you actually need to spend it. Plus if you shell out $300 bucks in 3 to 5 years you end up with essentially a new TV, with a screen just as bright as the day you bought it. A plasma will gradually dim and just keep getting dimmer until its useful life ends.

    Last year I bought a 720p 56" JVC H-DILA (the 1080p version wasn't available then) and I'm delighted with it. At that size and my viewing distance I doubt I'd see much difference even with 1080p, and as long as there isn't a 1080p set sitting next to it, how would I know anyway? [​IMG] I'm sitting out the hi-def DVD format war, so I won't have any native 1080p source material to watch on the set for a few years anyway. By that time I'll likely be ready to put a new set in the living room and move the JVC to the home office anyway.

    Just something else to think about.

    Regards,

    Joe
     
  10. craig_curtis

    craig_curtis Stunt Coordinator

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    don't discount the idea of a LCD rear-pro. NOT EVERYONE sees the SDE. I have the sony KDFE42A10 42 inch, and don't see it unless I am sitting too close to it. I liked it over the DLP sets, which in my opinion look too soft. Either way, it is very subjective and you should make that decision yourself.

    It is true (from what I know/understand) that there aren't many tv's out right now that actually accept a 1080P picture even though they are capable. Not exactly sure why, but there you have it.

    Plasma's definitely have the "wow cool" factor that other sets don't, but you also pay a premium for it, and the picture probably won't be nearly as nice as a similarly priced LCD or DLP set. I guess it depends on if you are trying to impress your friends with a tv hanging on your wall, or actually enjoying the picture of the tv and the experience it gives you.

    besides, the last time I checked, the only plasmas you could get in that price range are low end, and/or lower resolution (like EDTV, which is what, 480P?).
     
  11. joe_pre

    joe_pre Agent

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    I really appreciate the last two posts on the LCD's. I actually went out tonight and looked at some in person. I was really impressed with the clarity of the LCD's. Overall for me clarity is the #1 priority. I don't care if the TV itself looks 'cool'. I'm looking for performance (which speaks for itself in the 'cool' department). I had a chance to see the Sony 50" SXRD and I was very impressed with it. I've now eliminated Plasma as a choice and I'm now focusing on LCD's and DLP's. I'm going to try and get it narrowed down to some models and then I'll post back to see what experiences/thoughts people have on them. Thanks again for the posts. It has been really helpful thus far!
     

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