I have $1500 to spend; which widescreen to buy?

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Mike Camden, Jan 10, 2003.

  1. Mike Camden

    Mike Camden Auditioning

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    Hi all,
    My wife has agreed to let me spend $1500 on a new TV (to replace a four year old 32" Toshiba direct view), but I'm not sure which model to choose. I am set on a widescreen and have a few models in mind. Currently I'm not sure which to choose among the Toshiba 42H82, Panasonic PT47WX42 or RCA D40W135D. I will use the TV mostly for playing Xbox, watching DVDs, and watching some TV (mostly sports). The TV input will be through AT&T digital cable (which I assume is just an analog input). Seating in the room where the TV will be is between 7.5 - 8.5 feet from the TV. Any suggestions as to which TV would seem to be best for me (or a model different from one of the ones I'm currently considering) would be a huge help. I am currently leaning towards the Toshiba based on the picture in the store, but I realize that the TVs might not have all been set up properly. I really don't want to invest any additional money in tweaking the TV once I buy it (i.e. ISF), so I guess I'm most interested in a TV that will look good out of the box or only require relatively easy tweaking. Also, is this the best time to buy, or am I better off sucking it up until next year's models come out?

    Thanks for any help,

    Mike
     
  2. Jan Strnad

    Jan Strnad Screenwriter

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    I'm not sure about the RCA, but it isn't a brand I normally associate with quality. Both the Panasonic and Toshiba will do a great job for you, but if you don't want to tweak, go with the Tosh: More consistent color out of the box. You can get a smidge more sharpness out of the Panasonic, but it takes tweaking and maybe an ISF calibration to bring the color in line.

    You could also bank the money, draw some interest, and enjoy the benefits of waiting for next year's models. They'll come with built-in high def tuners, which are currently a $600 add-on; the tuner will add some cost, but surely not $600.

    Jan
     
  3. Chris_HD

    Chris_HD Agent

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    Playing Xbox on a CRT RPTV is a great way to burn it out quick.
    Please think long and hard about doing this.

    Of the three you listed I like the Toshiba the best but then again I am a Toshiba owner and thus biased.

    You can always wait until the next best thing comes out, and in the meantime, you lose out on all the fun you could be having.

    Chris
     
  4. Mike Camden

    Mike Camden Auditioning

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    Thanks for the advice.

    Chris, why does playing XBox on a CRT RPTV burn it out more quickly? Why would this burn it out more quickly than say watching DVDs on it? I can understand why the old 2D consoles that maintained a steady background would cause burn in, but does that still apply with today's consoles? If so, what type of TV makes more sense than a CRT RPTV for me to buy if I like to play games about as much as watching TV and movies?

    Thanks,

    Mike
     
  5. Colin Dunn

    Colin Dunn Supporting Actor

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    Video games show static images (like score displays) that increase your risk of CRT burn-in. At the very least, you should be careful to adjust your brightness/contrast down (as is done in a Video Essentials/Avia calibration). Most RPTVs come from the store in 'torch' mode (excessive brightness/contrast, often to the point of blooming and heightened burn-in risk).

    If you want a display for video gaming and widescreen TV, consider a digital display (such as an LCD/DLP projector or a plasma screen). These displays are not susceptible to burn-in, even with static images. I don't know of any plasma screens for $1,500 ... but at $1,600 there is a 16:9 widescreen projector, the Sanyo PLV-Z1. If you wait a little bit and save up the extra $100, that may be an even better option (if you can control light in your room).
     
  6. Mike Camden

    Mike Camden Auditioning

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    Wow, thanks for the info; I had no idea that this could be an issue with the XBox. This makes me start to think that I need to wait until plasma comes down some more than and look at going that route vice RPTV.

    Do I have this same risk of burn-in with my current CRT (a 32" Toshiba direct view CRT)? Anyone have any idea on how much game time it takes for this burn-in to occur? If I play for 5-10 hours a week (which is the max I play), am I likely to see this problem with an RPTV?

    Thanks,

    Mike
     
  7. Luke_Y

    Luke_Y Second Unit

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    For what it's worth my son plays video games constantly (he's a 9 yo) on the RPTV in our family room, he has for a few years now without the slightest hint of burn in.

    The key to this is setting your contrast at a reasonable level. I set the contrast etc. with Avia and I may have it a little lower than most, (have to watch with blinds closed during the day) but burn in has never been a worry.
     
  8. Karl_Luph

    Karl_Luph Supporting Actor

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    Did you take a look at the RCA F38310? I think it's a widescreen and besides a couple of power supply problems that will probably be covered under warranty , alot of people claim these units are very nice. Circuit City is selling them to unload them cheap.
     
  9. Dave H

    Dave H Producer

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    Someone in another thread discussed how playing video games caused burn in on his RPTV. I would play it safe and just use your current TV for video games and the new TV for movies/HDTV.
     
  10. Leif Wall

    Leif Wall Second Unit

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    Some people worry about burn-in, some people don't. I've got a 53" Panasonic and play X-Box on it. Especially since almost all games are 480p, they look fantastic. I've pulled up the tests in Avia to check for burn-in and it's perfectly clean.

    To the topic, you may be able to get the 53" Panasonic if you shop around. There's no DVI or Firewire inputs, so a lot of people say not to buy it. All I know is I got a great tv for a great price. It's kind of a crap-shoot right now.
     
  11. ManW_TheUncool

    ManW_TheUncool Producer

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    I would also be careful about playing Xbox on a CRT-based RPTV although lots of people do it. At the very least, keep the contrast as low as you can stand, not just what is "proper" according to Avia/VE/S&V setups.

    If you like the picture of the Panny's and want DVI input, then wait until the summer when the new line of Panny's w/ DVI should become available.

    BTW, it's unknown whether plasma's are actually less susceptible to burn-in than CRT-based RPTVs. So don't wait for plasma just because of the burn-in issue.

    _Man_
     
  12. Mike Camden

    Mike Camden Auditioning

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    Thanks for all of the info. After reading all of the posts, I think I am going to wait until the summer to see the new models that come out.
     
  13. Kirk_W

    Kirk_W Auditioning

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    You might also consider a refurbished Hitachi from uecweb.com as most models sell for about half the retail price. I heard some good reports from people who have purchased from them online.

    P.S.

    Plasma screens are also prone to screen burn by static images.
     
  14. Mike Camden

    Mike Camden Auditioning

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    Thanks for mentioning UECWEB, Kirk. I had never heard of them, but they appear to be very reasonable.

    Does anyone know if direct view CRTs sets are as susceptible to burn-in as it appears RPTVs are?

    Thanks,

    Mike
     
  15. Brad Wood

    Brad Wood Stunt Coordinator

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    "If you want a display for video gaming and widescreen TV, consider a digital display (such as an LCD/DLP projector or a plasma screen). These displays are not susceptible to burn-in, even with static images"

    I don't totally agree with this statement. I project manage video conferencing installations for a living, and right now I'm sorting out at least three separate boardroom installations that have burn in on their plasma screens. Also, from what I've noticed, Plasma seems to be the most susceptible to burn-in. In other situations, when a menu is left on the screen, I've found that burn in will occur in as little as two hours.

    I'm much more of a sound guy than a video guy though, but that's what I've found. Anyone else have similar experiences? I'm still in a holding pattern for plasma vs. LCD vs. RPHDTV. Maybe someday I'll have the funds.
     
  16. AndrewBest

    AndrewBest Extra

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    brad wood,

    you are right plasma and CRT based viewers are susceptible to burn-in. Fixed pixel displays are not however, such as DLP and LCD technology.
     
  17. Kirk_W

    Kirk_W Auditioning

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    Mike, direct view TVs are much less likely to have screen burn than RPTVs, but can still happen, you just have to work at it a lot harder. :b
     
  18. Mike Camden

    Mike Camden Auditioning

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    Thanks, Kirk. And thanks to all for the great advice. What it looks like I'm going to do is wait until next year's models come out this summer. During that time, I'll save up some more (see if I can get over $2000). When the new models come out, I'll look at either getting a new model or see if I can save some major bucks on a current year model.

    Thanks Again,

    Mike
     

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