Widescreen TVs- I can't win

Discussion in 'Displays' started by Erwin, Dec 17, 2004.

  1. Erwin

    Erwin Stunt Coordinator

    Joined:
    Mar 7, 1999
    Messages:
    182
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    For 6 years, I have had a 32" TV that has never given me problems. It's OK when watching DVDs, but of course, like everyone, I dream of that bigger screen size. I have a $1000 for expenses on new tv. Buying a 30" WS TV would be stupid for me since that's really no different than a 32" standard TV plus 1.33X1 is much smaller. I was thinking about a RPTV that would be in my price range:

    *SAMSUNG 47" with stand- $1047
    *Magnavox 51"- $992
    *Philips (HDTV tube TV) 34"- $999
    *Philips 51"- $1194

    The problem is- is that there several people having problems with projection tvs in the past. I have not seen one positive response from someone who has owned one for 3-4years. People complain about the convergence, the color being way off, the tv coming on with no picture (although there is sound). Other complaints are people having their tvs shutting off by itself. Are their big tvs out there that are (almost) indestructable like tube tvs? I would hate to blow $1000 on a projection tv that will only be good for 3 years or less. I stinks because I see this 47" projection tv at Sams Club that is absolutely beautiful, but I haven't seen any history that proves they have longterm reliability. The only projection tv that seems to have little to no complaints are the Hitachi tvs, but unfortunately, they are out my price range.
     
  2. Lev-S

    Lev-S Second Unit

    Joined:
    Jun 29, 2003
    Messages:
    324
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    What about a 34" HDTV? Tube, not projection, based.
     
  3. Steve Schaffer

    Steve Schaffer Producer

    Joined:
    Apr 15, 1999
    Messages:
    3,756
    Likes Received:
    1
    Trophy Points:
    0
    I've had a Sony KP57HW40 widescreen HD-capable crt based rptv since late September of 2001. It's never drifted out of convergence, my avia settings for color, contrast, and brightness haven't changed appreciably meaning the set is pretty much as bright and the color's about the same as it originally was. The set is on an average of 4 hours a night during the week and as much as 12 hours a day on weekends--44 hours a week times 156+ weeks=roughly 7000 hours so far. PQ is overall better now than when new, due to a few simple service menu tweaks to correct red push and tone down SVM.

    Nothing has ever malfunctionned on this set. I have removed the back panel and cleaned the crt lenses (not the mirror or inside of the screen) a couple of times.

    I'd be willing to bet there are plenty of other Sony, Mitsubishi, Toshiba, and Hitachi owners with similar experience from similar vintage sets. They don't post here about it because problems are much more likely to be reported than total satisfaction with a product.

    I'd feel a lot more confident about one of the sets from one of these mfgs (add Panasonic too) at a $1500 price point than the absolute bottom priced models you're looking at, however.
     
  4. Inspector Hammer!

    Inspector Hammer! Executive Producer

    Joined:
    Mar 15, 1999
    Messages:
    11,061
    Likes Received:
    1
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Location:
    Houston, Texas
    Real Name:
    John Williamson
    I must say that i'm a bit baffled by the notion of a RPTV not lasting that long. With care, calibration (ISF or otherwise) and up-keep it should last for 10 years at least, most likely more.

    A friend of mine had a 61" 4x3 for at least 6 years and because he took really good care of it, it looked just as great the day he sold it as the day he bought it.

    I really wouldn't worry about that.
     
  5. Rocky F

    Rocky F Second Unit

    Joined:
    Jun 13, 2002
    Messages:
    371
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    I've got the 51" Magnavox you mentioned. I've only had it for two months so I can't speak for longevity, but it's nice for the price. My sister-in-law has a slighty older 34" Philips that has a great picture. It really comes down to personal preference, do you want the size or a somewhat sharper image. Trust me, I fully understand the limited budget thing, and while I wouldn't say I've experienced buyer's regret or anything, I do find myself wondering if I made the best decision. The size and shape of the set, and how it fit in my room were also considerations for me so I feel I made the best choice at the time.
     
  6. Jim Mcc

    Jim Mcc Producer

    Joined:
    Feb 11, 2004
    Messages:
    3,757
    Likes Received:
    38
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Location:
    Oconomowoc, WI.
    Real Name:
    Jim
    Erwin, I have a Mitsubishi 55" RPTV for almost 4 years now, and I've had 1 repair due to failing solder joints on convergence panel. Luckily I bought an extended warranty so the repair was free. I also have an Infocus X1 front projector in my basement HT room. It is GREAT, there's nothing like DVD's or HD satellite with a 106" diagonal screen. We watch all DVD's on projector, and occasional HDTV. We only use the Mits. for some standard satellite programing.
    Have you considered a front projector? I have a great setup for less than $1000, including projector, DIY screen, DIY ceiling mount, and misc. cables.
    I would never buy a RPTV again.
     
  7. Erwin

    Erwin Stunt Coordinator

    Joined:
    Mar 7, 1999
    Messages:
    182
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    I am so pleased by all the responses and in such a short time too.




    Yes, actually I had at one point. They are nice. However, the 3000 bulb life that I have read about keeps me from buying them. I noticed that the Epson Projector ($849 at SAMS Club) and Epson bulbs are only $150 which actually isn't too bad for projectors. I think if they could create a projector that could last as long as a tube-tv, sales would go up big time.

    In order to maximize the lifespan and create theater enviroment, I plan on exclusively using this set for DVDs/movies (nothing else). My 32" will be used for cable broadcasting which will continue to recieve the most viewing usage.
     
  8. Erwin

    Erwin Stunt Coordinator

    Joined:
    Mar 7, 1999
    Messages:
    182
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Here is some pics of the tvs.

    [​IMG]
    51" Magnavox

    [​IMG]
    47" Samsung (stand not shown in picture, but is included)

    [​IMG]
    Philips 51"

    [​IMG]
    34" Philips HDTV (tube)
     
  9. Jim Mcc

    Jim Mcc Producer

    Joined:
    Feb 11, 2004
    Messages:
    3,757
    Likes Received:
    38
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Location:
    Oconomowoc, WI.
    Real Name:
    Jim
    Erwin, your intended use for just DVD's is perfect for a projector. My X1 bulb is rated at 4000 hours. The earlier X1's were 3000, but then they raised it to 4000.
    When you figure out how long the bulb should last, it's really not expensive at all. If I watch 5 movies per week that's about 10 hours. 10 hours X 52 weeks = 520 hours per year. 7 years = 3640 hours. 8 years = 4160. Even if you cut the hours in half(2000), the bulb would last almost 4 years.
    My bulb is about $280, so that's $40 A YEAR. I think that's pretty damn good. Plus you get a much bigger picture, great quality, for less money. And most wives love not having that HUGE RPTV sitting there.
     
  10. Erwin

    Erwin Stunt Coordinator

    Joined:
    Mar 7, 1999
    Messages:
    182
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0


    I am laughing to myself as I read this statement. [​IMG] Yes, my wife doesn't mind the big screen. But she gives me that stare (you know the one [​IMG] ) and say, "Where do you intend to put this mamoth?" After reading the AVS Forum posts about projectors, they seem to be great for the most part. I think I'll head to SAMS Club tomorrow and see what they have. I probably won't have to change the bulb that much. Come to think of it, we probably spend 65% of our viewings on television (CSI, Cold Case, Simpsons, King of Queens, Everybody Loves Raymond, Nickoloden for the kiddies in daytime when they watch it,...etc.) We watch about 10 movies (max) a week equaling to 20hrs (less if you factor in Disney Movies and Comedies) and some weeks, we only watch 2.

    I think the coolest thing about a projector other than the space is the fact that it is out of reach of my lovable 21-month-old son. He loves cords and anything that has lights It's really fun when take him homes that are not child-proof.

    I noticed that the projector I am looking at needs an adapter if want to use "component video". The company sells there adapter for a whopping $100. Fortunately, I was able to find a company that sells it for only $28 (much better [​IMG] )

    Thanks alot, Jim
     
  11. Jim Mcc

    Jim Mcc Producer

    Joined:
    Feb 11, 2004
    Messages:
    3,757
    Likes Received:
    38
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Location:
    Oconomowoc, WI.
    Real Name:
    Jim
    Erwin, which projector are you looking at?
    Do you know if you would like DLP or LCD?
    I can't imagine what kind of adapter would cost $100.
    Samsclub.com has the Infocus 4805 DLP projector, which is a great projector. It is very popular and has gotten great reviews.
     
  12. Erwin

    Erwin Stunt Coordinator

    Joined:
    Mar 7, 1999
    Messages:
    182
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    I actually got an Epson S1+ ($848). It's probably not as good as the one you mentioned, but it does the job. I didn't see any other projectors at Sams. I have a temporary set-up in my home now for the projector. The picture looks really good though. I need to get a device to hang it from the ceiling (having a cathedral ceiling makes it easy to aquire depth). I didn't think the quality would be even close to a theater. It's not a home theater, but it's very close. For some reason, the DD5.1 dts sound system made more sense, now that it was balanced with a big screen. I measured the screen size. It was about 88". I watched "I, Robot" (a good test disc).

    Unfortunately, I have noticed some(about 3) dead pixels (tiny, but green)[​IMG] The sreen still looks really nice, but I may trade it in for another Epson S1+, but from what I've read it's almost pointless because this one guy went through six Epsons and still has one with a dead pixel/pixels. I guess I could tolerate this, it's not realy distracting since the screen is so big. I just wish I wouldn't have read the posts on AVSforum last night before buying because that's all I was looking for when watching the movie. I thought it may be dust- but, who knows. I just like knowing that I bought it from Sams since they have such a flexible return/exchange policy. I have had a taste of the big screen, so little green pixels or not- I don't think I can go back to the tiny 32"[​IMG]

    After I exchang for another unit or within 30 days, I'll definitely get that 3 year extended warranty for $79 making it a 5 year warranty coverage. They said this coverage includes bulb coverage (that would be nice since they cost $150 to $199). Circuity City would probably charge well over $200 for that type of coverage. I think I paid $50 or more for a similiar warranty @ CC for a $349 DVD Recorder.
     
  13. Jim Mcc

    Jim Mcc Producer

    Joined:
    Feb 11, 2004
    Messages:
    3,757
    Likes Received:
    38
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Location:
    Oconomowoc, WI.
    Real Name:
    Jim
    Erwin, don't settle for the dead pixel, get a different one.
    Before I bought my X1, I checked into the Epson Home 10. I was told by an Epson rep. that it doesn't matter where I buy the projector, that if something went wrong with it(up to 2 years I think)they would send out a replacement within 24 hours. Then I would send the original back in same box to Epson. They have the BEST customer service/warranty I believe. I just couldn't pass up the price for my X1.
    If you're interested, I built my 106" diagonal screen for about $40.00, and I'm very happy with it. It's made from 1X3 pine and Blackout cloth from Joann Fabrics.
    At Avsforum.com in the DIY screen section, there are photos and instructions how to build it.
    I also built my ceiling mount for less than $15.00. The prices for mounts are RIDICULOUS. I used a scrap piece of MDF, 2 pipe flanges, 1 pipe nipple(to fit), 3 bolts with washers and nuts to fit. Search for "Monkeyman's" mount at Avsforum.com in Under $3500 Projector section.
     
  14. Erwin

    Erwin Stunt Coordinator

    Joined:
    Mar 7, 1999
    Messages:
    182
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    I am not sure if it's dust or not, but I just watched "Christmas Vacation" (widescreen special ed) and I could not relocate the pixels at all (very strange). Ok, I relocated one, but yeah, I probably still take it back. I am on vacation for the next 3 weeks, so it's nice to have this setup. I'll have to try those suggestions. My 5 year old daughter is very excited about this. Maybe she'll watch Shrek 2 tomorrow or I'll watch Lord of the Rings: RotK [​IMG]

    I was wondering: does the projector go upsidedown when it's hanging from a ceiling? I looked in my owner's manual and it has areas underneath for mounting. It was somethingelse watching a few minutes of Star Wars on the wall at 90" [​IMG]
     
  15. Jim Mcc

    Jim Mcc Producer

    Joined:
    Feb 11, 2004
    Messages:
    3,757
    Likes Received:
    38
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Location:
    Oconomowoc, WI.
    Real Name:
    Jim
    Yes, the projector goes upside down and you select "ceiling" in setup menu after it's mounted.
    Everybody describes dead pixels the same way, "green dots" I'm sorry to say. If you don't get a new one, you'll be kicking yourself and it will drive you nuts. Enjoy.
     
  16. Erwin

    Erwin Stunt Coordinator

    Joined:
    Mar 7, 1999
    Messages:
    182
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Today, I watched "Jurassic Park III" and it was very nice. One of my daughter's favorite movies (she loves dinosaurs) and they don't scare her for some reason but a little dog next door will [​IMG]

    Anyway, I didn't see any pixels throughout today, but I still intend to exchange it. I was going to today, but my wife wanted to do Christmas shopping and let me watch the little ones. I already have my present though [​IMG]

    I am now in the process of trying to arrange the projector in a permanent area placement. I bought a rack for a shelf and I going to simply angle it down (otherwise, it will hit the ceiling). My 32" Shares the same area, but it really isn't a distraction because my 32" is on a low stand while the projector screen perfectly fits above. My living room can easily get dark. The only windows I have are on the door and two in the kitchen from a distance. Supposedly the lamp on the Epson only lasts 2000 hrs, but they can be purchased for $150 @ Sams.
     

Share This Page