Purchasing Rear Projection TV

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Dan Verret, Nov 8, 2002.

  1. Dan Verret

    Dan Verret Auditioning

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    Hello everyone - first post for me. I've spent the better part of my last two weeks reading most of the relevant information on my purchase decision and visiting several different retailers to familiarize myself with the different options available to me. I was waiting to be fully ready before asking THE question which, by the way, is no different from a question I've seen asked over and over!

    WHICH TV DO I BUY???

    After going back and forth, I'm convinced on getting a 16:9 tv in the 51-53 inches. Won't be watching too many DVDs but still... Most believe the zoom/strecth features are not too bad (except does that hate it!)

    I'm down to deciding between the Hitachi, Panasonic and Sony. A lot has been written on the first two but very litte the Sony (although I remember someone saying that between a Sony and another brand, he'd go with Sony)

    All are the same price (literally - I live in Montreal) except that the Panny is 53'. I'm no expert (not even close) but they all look the same to me. Have I been brainwashed in believing that Sony is just a better product?
    Should I go against my gut and go with Hitachi as a known reliable brand for RPTV?

    Should I go even further and go with the Panny? That picture, BTW ALWAYS appears crisper than the other two?

    Some salesperson told me that burn-in was NOT an issue with the Sony but a major one with the Panny. I've read a lot on this subject and pretty much know what to do to reduce the problem - if it even is one.

    Anyways, this has gone on too long. I'm looking to close a purchase by the end of the month. My essential question remains - why NOT Sony?

    Thanks

    Dan
     
  2. CoryS

    CoryS Auditioning

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    I have a sony 51hw40 and it has worked really well thus far. Whichever tv you decide on get an extended warranty! You never know with these things some people never have a problem and some have them, so to be save get it...
     
  3. dave snyder

    dave snyder Auditioning

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    Dan:

    You should probably try to read some reviews on each set if you can find them. Hitachi is really becoming a big player in the rear-projection TV (RPTV) market. And it's mainly due to the picture quality--that is IF the stretch mode doesn't drive you whacky! The color on the Hitachi sets are beautiful right out of the box as well.

    Second point: When you DO purchase a 16:9 RPTV, you'll quickly find out that watching DVD movies IS the best thing these sets do. My 53" Hitachi looks brilliant playing DVD movies. WAY better than watching TV anyday.

    If you are a huge sports fan, the "smooth-wide" feature on Hitachi is horrible for watching say a hockey game. A little better on football and definitely watchable on baseball.

    I'm pretty certain that Circuit City sells Sony and Hitachi. Not sure about Panasonic. Only a side-by-side test with your own eyes can judge the better set for you.

    Good luck and keep us posted.

    dave
     
  4. Dan Verret

    Dan Verret Auditioning

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    Thanks for the input guys. I will definitely get the extended warranty (a small price to pay for peace of mind)

    I did do a side-by-side of all three and there wasn't really a huge difference - I did find the Panny crisper, as I stated earlier.

    I will be watching a lot of hockey on it though so I'm a little concerned with the comment (it's been posted elsewhere, as well)

    As for the DVDs, we watch a lot of satelitte and seldom watch movies on DVD. Who knows, though? It may be that I won't be able to resist.

    Thanks
     
  5. Keith Plucker

    Keith Plucker Screenwriter

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    Hi Dan,

    Whichever you purchase be sure to budget some money for an ISF calibration after you get some time on the set. Calibrate with Video Essentials, Avia or the Sound & Vision DVD as soon as you get it home.

    About 3 years ago I made the jump and purchased my first RPTV. A 16:9 Toshiba. The ISF calibration made a noticeable difference and I am very glad I spent the money on it (about $450 for my set).

    Although I have had no direct experience with any of the brands you listed, from what I have read I would go with the Panasonic.

    Good luck!

    -Keith
     
  6. Neil Joseph

    Neil Joseph Lead Actor

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    I am moving this to Display Devices/TV's/Projectors.
     
  7. Joel Peskoff

    Joel Peskoff Auditioning

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    On the topic of extended warranties, does one need to buy it from the store or are they available 3rd party? Car extended warranties are available 3rd party, so, conventional wisdow is that for electronics they would be too. From the store, they are a major profit item (usually making more on the warranty than the product markup.)

    If you know, please point me to the 3rd parties since I'm going to need an extended for my new RPTV.
     
  8. Dan Verret

    Dan Verret Auditioning

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    Joel, good point. I think Future Shop here in Mtl Canada was offering 4 years additional for $400 cdn which included annual maintenance/tweaking/calibration (!?)

    What should this normally come with? I've always taken warranties on digital cameras and PDAs and have grown accustom to excellent service from Future Shop and well worth the investment.

    What about TVs? Anyone?


    Dan
     
  9. Dan Ponze

    Dan Ponze Stunt Coordinator

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    I agree with Dave. Hitachi is one to definately consider with their new SWX line. Toshiba is also worth a look and a little less expensive. Not sure where you are located so can't give you a recomendation on where to go to buy but I would get an extended warranty yes since most sets is only 90 days labor.
     

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