HDTV recommendations($2,000-5,000) and advice needed.(somewhat long)

Discussion in 'Displays' started by Matt Odegard, Nov 1, 2003.

  1. Matt Odegard

    Matt Odegard Stunt Coordinator

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    Well, my moms boyfriendn and he is looking for a tv in this price range.

    He had a few questions that I didn't think I could answer.

    He believes that Plasma's and LCD are the best out there. But, its my belief that they aren't quite at the peak there technology yet. I personally don't think the pq is there in plasma's in this price range compared to a RPTV of same cost. Although I don't know if it was just the Plasma sets I was viewing. I recommended him to buy RPTV unless room was a serious issue. Was I giving the wrong advice or are Plasma's and LCD's coming out with better picture quality than RPTV's now a days?

    Second, he read an article in our local paper, link: http://www.startribune.com/stories/535/4187667.html The last paragraph in this article caused him to believe that the HDTV's out now are not all digital and will not support the HDTV decoders that will come out in 2007.

    I explained it doesn't matter, as there are only 2 formats of HD currently broadcast, 720p and 1080i both of which if not always 1080i are supported by HDTV's made today. I told him all HDTV's are in fact digital sets, although some sets that aren't hd do claim to be digital. I think that caused some confusion for him and the writer of this article. Or am I wrong? Are some hdtv's not digital as they claim to be? I think its an error on the reporters findings. I also said that all HDTV's will display any HDTV signal from the STB in the future. As long as it has component or DVI inputs, it should support any decoder's to come out in the near future correct?

    He also thought the HD signal will not always be good, or vary in quality do to the strength of the signal. I stated that since it is a digital signal. It will always be good or it simply won't be there, again since it is a digital signal.

    Was I wrong in any of my advice? Again please point us out to some HDTV's plasma or rptv to look at.

    Thanks and hope it wasn't a boaring read.

    Matt
     
  2. ChrisWiggles

    ChrisWiggles Producer

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    Well, basically HDTVs didn't NEED to come with an HDTV tuner box. They are just capable of displaying hi-def signals that are fed to them. The FCC is mandating that TV manufacturers include HDTV tuners in all sets by a certain date(i forget specifically, it's earlier for larger sets, and goes in steps down, to all sets except some very small, or special displays).

    Many sets today are fully HDTV ready(with a tuner) but many are not. Those that are not, you can just buy an HDTV tuner, and it accomplishes the same thing. Plasmas etc are cool, but they are cost prohibitive compared to their absolute PQ. Obviously people will disagree to the qualities of different technologies, but I would not put plasma at the top by any means. Video nuts generally put it at the bottom. I wouldn't demean the PQ, but it is expensive, and in terms of JUST PQ, it's not so great. VEry cool though, small, etc.
     
  3. Matt Odegard

    Matt Odegard Stunt Coordinator

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    What is the general consensus of which type of TV is the best in terms of PQ? Atleast in this price range? DLP, LCD, or RPTV's?

    I see Sammy has a 50" DLP for $3,999(HLN507w), Panny has a 50" LCD(pt50lc13) for $2,999 and Sony's Grand Wega(KF50we610) 50" LCD for $3,299. There's so many choices in this price range, its confusing which is the best.

    I'm going to do searches on all of these and more but I don't fully understand which type is generally considered the best.
     
  4. ChrisWiggles

    ChrisWiggles Producer

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    I'm biased, but in terms of absolute PQ, all other things ignored, CRT-based displays are still best, that being RPTVs, and CRT projectors.

    You can get wonderful PQ with the others, and digital displays will be a lot brighter/more dazzling, but they won't be as good from a reference standpoint. It's a tough call, I'd go with a digital or a CRT before I'd go with plasma though...
     
  5. Matt Odegard

    Matt Odegard Stunt Coordinator

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    Well thats what I remember from before. I thought that CRT is the best as far as pq for the price, and Plasma had a lack luster black level, therefor not as good of a picture.

    After some research I found this to be the case, and it looks like the Samsung HLN507w will be the way to go. Unless he decides he wants a CRT RPTV which is what I recommended to him but he doesn't want to listen.

    He's pretty addament that Plasma and LCD are the best, hands down. I told him this simply wasn't the case. But he strongly disagree's.

    While I'm not trying have a who's better contest here. I just want to point him to a good tv, and since he doesn't think CRT's are good at all, the Sammy is looking like the way to go.
     
  6. dan fritzen

    dan fritzen Second Unit

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    I think LCD is pretty good and price is definitely within reason but the dead/stuck pixel thing scares me. I am not sure what manufactures require but for PC monitors it varies, i.e. 6 dead/stuck pixels before warranty replacement.

    CRT is solid and so is DLP.

    Just make sure whatever he gets can accept both 720p and 1080i even if it converts one and that is has DVI or the upcoming HDMI. Firewire would be nice as well.
     
  7. David Galindo

    David Galindo Screenwriter

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    DLP is one of the best projection types out there. I ordered a 50" Samsung DLP...cant wait!
     
  8. Shane Martin

    Shane Martin Producer

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    Matt,
    At this point all of them have their own inherent issues/compromises so which is best is quite a bit subjective.

    Not everyone wants a 250lb box in their living room thus they are willing to compromise the picture in order to get a lighter set or in the case of plasma(cooler looking).

    As far as I'm concerned I rate the technologies like this:
    1. Crt. Best PQ, heavy set. Going obselete very quickly.
    2. LCD. As good as DLP, lightweight. Below average black levels. Has screendoor possibilities but I haven't seen them on a RPTV LCD set yet.
    3. DLP. As good as LCD but rainbows can bother some folks. Also more expensive than LCD.
    4. Plasma. Very cool, very expensive. The lesser sets aren't that great. You'd need to spend $5kish to get what I'd consider to be acceptable pq.

    Since I can't/don't want to squeeze a CRT RPTV in my room I'm considering one of the digital options and I'm willing to sacrifice some black level which after watching movies on a friends' 9 feet wide LCD setup, I can live with the issues that LCD has.

    Then it comes down to which set:
    Here is what I'm considering:
    1. Hitachi 50v500 LCD RPTV $2800ish
    2. Sony Grand Wega 50" LCD
    3. Panasonic 50" LCD
    4. Samsung DLP 50".

    After a viewing or 2 at my local Circuit City and doing some search, I'm pretty much sold on the Hitachi. Unless something special comes out at CES, I plan on picking one up next March(roughly) maybe earlier.
     
  9. JonZ

    JonZ Lead Actor

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    Check out audioreview.com.

    They may have user reviews for some of the models your looking at.
     

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