help a widescreen newbie out

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by ChuckDeLa, Dec 3, 2002.

  1. ChuckDeLa

    ChuckDeLa Cinematographer

    Joined:
    Nov 26, 2002
    Messages:
    2,802
    Likes Received:
    0
    Well, I think I'm buying a widescreen set in the next couple of months. I want to spend around $1500, certainly no more than $2000.

    - What are some brands/models to avoid?

    - What are some brands/models that are especially good?

    - I've been hearing about some 4:3 "stretch modes" that look better than others. How does this work? Is there a way of "filling the screen" while watching regular TV that doesn't make people look fatter? This doesn't seem possible to me.

    - We have cable TV. I read something elsewhere on the forum about WS TVs not handling cable TV very well? What's up with that?


    Probably the most important factor to me is more screen for my money. Of course, I also want a picture that looks nice, and a set that doesn't have repair issues or is too difficult to set up.
     
  2. Max Knight

    Max Knight Supporting Actor

    Joined:
    May 8, 2000
    Messages:
    531
    Likes Received:
    0
    On the low end of the price scale Toshibas have a following around here. I have one and enjoy it very much.

    You really have to see stretch modes for yourself to decide. I often go with a "zoom" mode that crops the top and bottom of the screen (I don't mind messing up the framing for talk shows and such).

    I can't really answer your question about cable, as I have satellite.
     
  3. ManW_TheUncool

    ManW_TheUncool Producer

    Joined:
    Aug 18, 2001
    Messages:
    5,987
    Likes Received:
    36
    Location:
    The BK
    Real Name:
    ManW
    Yeah, if your budget is $1500-2K, especially closer to $1500, and you want the best stretch mode for lots of cable viewing, you should probably get a 42" Toshiba, if that's big enough for you. You can probably also get a 50" Toshiba for ~$2K, if you really want bigger.

    IF you don't care quite that much about your regular TV viewing AND can't stand anybody's stretch modes, maybe you should get a Panny 47" or 53" for less. The caveat is that they don't come w/ DVI capability/upgradeability. However, depending on your perspective and expectations, it's possible that DVI may not be an issue for you w/ this TV purchase. Also, some TVs, like the Toshiba's, are only upgradeable and still requires $$$ to actually upgrade. But all else being equal, it's definitely better to have it than not.

    FWIW, I almost bought a 50" Toshiba 4x3 set last week for $1500, but ended up w/ a Panny 53" widescreen for $1700 (w/ free in-home delivery and free leather recliner). For me, DVI is not a significant issue w/ this purchase because my primary concern is getting the best DVD performance w/in my budget--I don't care that much about regular TV nor would want any "high quality" stretching/zooming of such nor premium cable/sat channels nor pay-per-view, but for the majority of people, that probably is not the case. Well, ok, I don't want HD viewing to suck either. :p And by the time HD-DVD becomes an affordable reality (and use something like DVI), I'm pretty sure I'll be ready for a new TV (maybe plasma!) anyway.

    Hope this helps.

    _Man_
     
  4. Michael Reuben

    Michael Reuben Studio Mogul

    Joined:
    Feb 12, 1998
    Messages:
    21,763
    Likes Received:
    2
     
  5. ChuckDeLa

    ChuckDeLa Cinematographer

    Joined:
    Nov 26, 2002
    Messages:
    2,802
    Likes Received:
    0
    Yeah we haven't yet decided how we will watch 4:3 TV material... we'll have to check it out the sets in action before we decide, of course.

    DVI? Wuzzat?

    Keep the advice coming! It's all being absorbed! What about brands/models to avoid? Who are the real stinkers?
     
  6. ManW_TheUncool

    ManW_TheUncool Producer

    Joined:
    Aug 18, 2001
    Messages:
    5,987
    Likes Received:
    36
    Location:
    The BK
    Real Name:
    ManW
    Basically, DVI is a digital video interface--actually, that's exactly what the acronym standards for, IIRC.
    However, usually, what people worry about is DVI/HDCP, which is a copy-protected version of DVI that's become the primary candidate for carrying an HD signal between devices, especially source to display.
    This interface allows the content provider to control access to the HD content to prevent piracy (and also control distribution in general).
    Right now, the main worry is that IF and WHEN DVI/HDCP becomes the reality, content providers might restrict the analog component output of HD source devices like set-top boxes, HD-DVD players, etc. so that you can't get full HD resolution (but maybe just 480p) for some or even all their content.
    The prevailing opinion seems to be that only premium content like premium channels, pay-per-view and HD-DVD would have such restrictions. Certainly, there should be no concerns about over-the-air free broadcasts and very little regarding standard offerings like ESPN, CNN, etc.
    And I've wrote about my conclusions earlier in this thread, so I won't repeat them (yet again). [​IMG]
    Oh, elsewhere, I've also pointed out that there's good likelihood that somebody will come out w/ a DVI/HDCP-to-analog blackbox, if there's a market for it. At the very least, the pirates, whom the content providers are trying to stop w/ DVI/HDCP (or what-have-you), will have it. [​IMG] Ironic, ain't it?!
     

Share This Page