Why are direct-view HD ready sets so expensive?

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by David Nguyen, Jan 29, 2001.

  1. David Nguyen

    David Nguyen Stunt Coordinator

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    I'm researching 16:9 direct-view HD ready sets from Toshiba, Panasonic and Philips, and I've found that they are very expensive when compared to rear projection HD ready sets. For example, my friend recently purchased a 65" Mitsubishi HD 16:9 set for $4000, but a 34-36" direct view from the three aforementioned companies range from $3500 to $4500! The biggest set my "entertainment center" can take is a 36" set, so anything bigger is out of the question.
    A related question; I was also thinking about the Sony WEGA 36" XBR400, but since HD broadcasts are going to be 16:9, am I doing the right thing by just saving up the extra money for a widescreen set to begin with?
     
  2. VicRuiz

    VicRuiz Second Unit

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    Get rid of that entertainment center!
    ------------------
    Vic Ruiz
    STOP DVI/HDCP and DFAST
     
  3. BrianM

    BrianM Stunt Coordinator

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    I agree. You wouldn't buy a painting because it was the only one that fit your frame would you? I truly believe that entertainment cabinets are the worst thing to happen to home theater. Unfortunately women love them. Actually amend that last comment to read....entertainment centers and wives are the worst thing to happen to home theater.
     
  4. Martin Rendall

    Martin Rendall Screenwriter

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    BrianM,
    Bwahahahaaa! [​IMG]
    OBTopic: Isn't the 16x9 flat screen glass expensive to make?
    Martin.
     
  5. Frank

    Frank Stunt Coordinator

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    This is just a guess, but having been in the manufacturing business myself for the last 30 years, I think they are expensive because they are not manufacturing large numbers at this time. Once they gear up to produce mass quantities, the price should drop significently. When that will happen, I do not know.
    ------------------
    Frank...
    Turn off the TV and read these books those in power DON'T want you to read...
     
  6. Jorge Torralba

    Jorge Torralba Auditioning

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    Simply put, you get what you pay for. :)
     
  7. Charles Dodge

    Charles Dodge Auditioning

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    I had the same problem, I was looking for a second HDTV to fit an exisiting cabinet. (I have a 65" Mits set in the basement)I was ready to buy one of the 34" inch widescreen direct view sets but all were slightly too large.
    The sales clerk then showed me a Samsung 16:9, 30 inch direct view set. It is an EDTV (maximum resolution 480p) but the picture didn't impress me, it was connected to a progressive scan DVD player and looked soft compared to the nearby HDTVs showing an HD demo loop.
    However, he then hooked it up to an HDTV receiver and I was amazed at the picture quality. I really could not tell a difference between this set and the 34" Panasonic and Sony HDTVs which were sitting nearby when all were showing the same HD loop.
    I am now convinced that for a set in this size range, that you can not really discern the difference between an EDTV and an HDTV from more than a few inches away; except for the price! This set was $1899 compared to $3499 for the Panasonic 34".
    If you go look at this set just make sure they connect it to an HDTV receiver for you, and show you HD material.
     
  8. Rutledge

    Rutledge Stunt Coordinator

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    You are quoting list prices. The actual street price should be less. I usual count on getting about 20% off retail. If you are dealing with someone who won't discount, go somewhere else. Of course service is important, and I will pay more for a good dealer.
    I have been quoted prices of around $2200 for both the Toshiba 40HD80 and the Sony 36XBR400. For the level of performance that they offer, I don't consider it expensive.
    In the early '80s I sold Sony, Panasonic, and Magnavox big screen TVs. A 46" Sony cost about $4400 if I remember correctly. This set offered a picture that was almost unviewable in any room that wasn't dark.
    A 12" Sony TV cost $399 w/o remote. A top of the line Panasonic
    non hifi VCR cost $1200. A Sony Profeel 25" TV with tuner cost about $2000!!
    I could go on, but you get my point. I feel that the prices are fairly good right now, but are likely to go much lower.
    It reminds me of the first CD player that I bought in 1983. It was the Sony CDP-101, I paid $800 for it. I recently saw a 5 disc CD player advertised for $59 at Best Buy. WOW!
     
  9. David Nguyen

    David Nguyen Stunt Coordinator

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    Thanks for the replys, but I guess I should have explained part of my original post differently. When I said "entertainment zone," I actually meant that my house was designed with a "niche" or cutout in the living room which was meant for a tv. (The house is pretty old, so speaker placement and everything is not what I would like it to be.)
    Guess I have no choice but to save up for one of those sets then. [​IMG]
     
  10. Mike Kennedy

    Mike Kennedy Auditioning

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    David,
    I just went through the same process that you are in. I decided on a direct view set because it was going into an entertainment center in a room that I did not want to look like a home theater. Also, at least 50% of our viewing is not digital and direct view sets are better for that (imho).
    I liked the 34" 16:9 Panasonic, but could not justify the $1000 premium over the 36"xbr400, so I went with this 4:3 set. The 16:9 picture size and the quality are the same; the black bars don't bother me. Also for 4:3 (majority)programming, the picture is either larger on non distorted. For my situation, the decision was easy.
    As for why the cost difference, it is a matter of manufacturing learning costs and the volume made; over time the costs will converge.
    Just my opinion,
    Mike
     
  11. Woody

    Woody Auditioning

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    Just to shed the light of truth on this subject - large, direct-view sets are expensive because of one primary reason ... the CRTs themselves are very difficult (translation: expensive) to manufacture. This is the exact same reason why buying one is NOT a good idea either, IMO. Although premature CRT failures are indeed rare, if one happened to you with any of the sets under discussion here, you'd suddenly find yourself the non-proud owner of a rather expensive boat-anchor! Forget about ever replacing one of these CRTs ... you could get a whole brand new set for the cost of replacing one of these "jugs". I don't think anyone has any idea of the cost of one of these tubes, do you?
    To all those that insist that direct-view pictures are superior, I offer the following advice - GET OVER IT! The prices for large CRTs are NOT going to magically come down to where all of you would like to see them. It's time to face the inevitable fact - that the days of the CRT as a video display device are numbered, and counting. The future lies in other, less expensive (to manufacture) technologies. Whether LCD, DLP, D-Ila, plasma or something yet to be invented - the venerable CRT is doomed to extinction!
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    woodman
     
  12. Marque D

    Marque D Stunt Coordinator

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    I found a Direct-View HD set at what I think is a great price. At the Fry's Electronics here in the DFW area I found a Daewoo 30" HDTV (not HD-Ready) for $1999. It's a 16:9 set with a built in DTV tuner and cheaper than a Sony. But this is the first time I have never heard of them, so I would be a little cautious but I will take a hard look at making this my HD set for my bedroom. I think you have Fry's in California but not sure what part. By the way the Model # is DSC-30W60N.
     
  13. Mike Kennedy

    Mike Kennedy Auditioning

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    Woodman,
    I agree with you to a point. In 10 years or so, I would expect that DLP (or something) will totally replace the crt technology for large sets. The problem is that the new technologies are too expensive and unreliable for primetime today. So what to do in the meantime.
    Your choices today are basically direct view sets or rptv's, built on the same technology; surely, you don't believe that rptv's are next generation stuff. Personally, I believe that today rptv's are the best choice for home theater type of home applications. However, for general family room settings for a broad range of viewing, I prefer direct view tvs, They are brighter, sharper, more reliable, and less obtrusive.
    I also believe that direct view sets are a better transition set to the new technology than rptv's. I fully expect that I will buy in about 5 years a DLP technolgy tv. I already have a place in our bedroom for my HD set; it will replace a 25 year old 25" that has never been in the shop. CRT tv's will be around a long time; I am not so sure about rptv's.
    Just my opinion
    Mike
     

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