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Anyone wanna help me pick a TV?

Discussion in 'Off Topic [BG]' started by rojo412, Dec 13, 2012.

  1. rojo412

    rojo412 You're entering a world of bass... Supporting Member

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    About a year ago, I got a free, ancient projector HDTV, 55". And it works fine, but occupies way too much of the living room.
    I went a-shopping today, and almost pulled the trigger on a 60" plasma, before being talked out of it by a friend of mine.
    "GET LED! That's the only way to go these days..."

    Okay, LED, great! They are nice and pretty, but pricey and smaller for my bucks.

    I online shopped until my brain crapped out on me, so I ask unto the TB nation some TV questions and hopefully, you can guide my wallet in the right direction.

    Sony, Samsung, and LG come out as the front runners for brand. I was told to avoid house brands like the plague. I'm fine with that! Any other highly recommended brands I should seek out?

    My price range was hoping to be about $800, but there are a few factors that could pull me further out, if worth it... A larger screen or SmartTV capabilities.
    Does a Smart TV mean that I have internet access on the TV? And is it worth it for me to get a TV with that built in or just opt for an add-on (Apple TV, Google TV?) later and buy either a cheaper or bigger TV for my money now?
    Or can I get a MacMini and just make the TV my monitor?

    Like I said, I'm kind of lost and need guidance. Brain, fried.
  2. spectorbass83

    spectorbass83

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    LED is essentially the same as LCD except instead of a CFL for backlighting it uses LED's. Since LED's are way more efficient and last a lot longer the perception is that LED TV's are generally better.

    I looked into the new Samsung LED tv's which are gorgeous but truly out of my price range!

    I ended up going with a 60" Panasonic Plasma - you really can't beat Plasma tv's for picture quality and they have the best refresh rates - if you watch a lot of sports in HD or action movies Plasma is perfect! Panasonic and Sharp are among the best when it comes to Plasma.

    You also have to ask yourself what you want the TV to do. Do you want a 3D TV with built in Facebook, web browsing and wifi? Or do you just care about picture quality?
  3. rojo412

    rojo412 You're entering a world of bass... Supporting Member

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    I'm not a sports guy, really. In fact, hi-def is wasted on me watching The Daily Show and cartoons. I'm not much of a movie buff either, but I don't want to pigeonhole myself in case my lack of "def" is why I'm not into that stuff.
    I also don't want to buy a TV that is going to crap out on me in a few years.

    Plasma was shot down as being old technology that will require a "retuning" after a few years because they lose their luster. But then again, when I saw the 600hz refresh on plasma, vs the 120hz on most decent LED tvs, there was definitely a smoothness to it that I liked.

    But as for internet on the TV, that would save me from having to buy a laptop or tablet for the wife or I to use when the other one of us is on the computer. So I'd be quite happy with internet capability on the TV... but if I can add that onto a TV cheaper than getting it built in, I'm more than happy to do that.
    I have a Wii and would like an Xbox or PS3 in the future. I know that those can access things like Netflix or Hulu, would the TV get me that too? And checking TB?!? If so, I could see myself going SmartTv.
  4. Stumbo

    Stumbo Supporting Member

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    If you get a Hi-Def TV you'll need to get an HD subscription service from your cable/dish company. Based on my daughter's new Vizio 55" LED LCD, HD is definitely worth it. FYI, Vizio has been in the computer monitor business for a long time. Their monitors have been reliable and had a great picture when the company where I worked was using them.

    My daughter purchased from Sam's Club. $888. VIZIO’s M550SL 55" Edge Lit Razor LED™ LCD HDTV 120Hz SPS w/ Wi-Fi with VIZIO Internet Apps® puts the best of the web right on your TV. Get instant access to on-demand movies, TV shows, social networking, music, photos and more at the push of a button on the enhanced 2-sided remote with keyboard. Equipped with built-in WiFi (802.11n), it also boasts 1080p Full HD with Razor LED and 200,000 to 1 DCR for brilliant color and clarity in a razor thin design.

    SRS StudioSound HD™ delivers advanced virtual surround sound, and four HDMI® ports connect your home theater, satellite or cable TV and Blu-ray™ Player. This energy saver also meets Energy Star® 5.3 guidelines making it a friend to the environment and your wallet.

    DEO:
    Diagonal Viewable: 54.64”
    Backlight Type: Edge Lit Razor LED™
    Resolution: 1920 x 1080 (1080p)
    Signal Compatibility: 1080p, 1080i, 720p, 480p, 480i
    Colors: 16.7 million
    Dynamic Contrast Ratio: 200,000:1
    Refresh Rate: 120Hz SPS
    Brightness: 360 nits
    Response Time: 8ms
    Viewable Angle : 178°
    OSD Language: English, Spanish, French

    She has used it only for DVD, Games, Television at this point.
  5. DwaynieAD

    DwaynieAD

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    Samsung. I own both Sony and Samsung. I'm a Sony fanboy to the core. Samsung is better on so many levels. quieter operation. price point. features.
  6. rojo412

    rojo412 You're entering a world of bass... Supporting Member

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    I was also a Sony guy, to the bone! In one situation I was looking at, there's a Sony and a Samsung, both smart... both $900.
    But it sounds like Samsung has an edge!
  7. DwaynieAD

    DwaynieAD

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    my entertainment stand used to look like this: sony dvd player, sony surround sound, sony ps2, sony ps3, sony tv. it's been replaced. the sony is now in the bedroom. I still feel like sony makes great products, but samsung has overtaken them in my opinion.
  8. i_got_a_mohawk

    i_got_a_mohawk

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    I believe LEDs also give you more uniform lighting.


    OP, Plasma's have come on leaps and bounds. I remember there used to be a lot of issues of image burn-in and overheating, but as far as I'm aware they are long past that. These days, while being cheaper, plasmas also give you better blacks than LCD or LED TVs, they also don't have any problems with stray light from the backlight. LCD and LED TVs tend to be lighter, thinner and brighter, they also tend to draw less power.

    Keep an eye out for sales, even in the run up to christmas. While plasmas are still coming out cheaper for bigger sizes, the price difference isn't that much.

    I'm a big fan of Samsung TVs, picked up a 40 inch Samsung LED back at the start of the year. My parents also have a couple.

    Granted, my screen did die (but thats a risk with any electronic device), but on the upside, the Samsung customer care was brilliant. Contacted them, they gave me something to try, it didn't work. They then contacted the local repair company, who in turn contacted me (within about half an hour). They came out the next day and took the TV, had it back in 3 working days with a new screen!

    I know a number of people with Sony Bravia TVs which are also excellent. My brother also picked up a 55 inch LG LED TV recently, and it's spectacular! (Also, because there are a lot of sale stuffs on the go, he got a ~£250 soundbar with it for free).

    HD is worth checking out, many TVs come with freeview and/or freesat, so if you have a decent arial or a dish, you can connect to free channels (not sure if it's the same in the US). There are also a lot of Smart TVs that come with wireless adapters built in too, which is also pretty cool.

    I think the best thing to do is walk into an electricals store, have a rough guide of what you want (screen size, cost) and just see what looks best.
  9. i_got_a_mohawk

    i_got_a_mohawk

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    I think it's like many electronics fields, so many big companies always just nudging past each other a little at a time.
  10. pacojas

    pacojas "FYYA BUN" Supporting Member

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    +1 on the Panasonic Plasma!:hyper:

    my picture is so nice that i hate watching TV at my friends homes. their LCD hi-def looks grainy next to the plasma. YMMV:)
  11. i_got_a_mohawk

    i_got_a_mohawk

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    I was never really sold on the mega high refresh stuff. Films and broadcasts are generally recorded at a significantly lower frame rate. I've certainly never noticed the difference between good screens when one has a high refresh rate and the other doesn't.

    I realise they typically talk of refresh rate as a 90% change, but needing to go multiple times higher than the signal which is being played just seems like overkill (but I dare say it's an easy piece of tech to be progressive with and use as a selling point).
  12. 1958Bassman

    1958Bassman

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    Samsung makes the panels for Sony TVs, as well as for a lot of other companies. That would be fine if they didn't pick the best for themselves, though. They sell the stuff they don't want.
  13. 1958Bassman

    1958Bassman

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    It's not as much a matter of film frame rate as video frame rate. Video has 30 frames/second, with two 'fields'- one for luminance (the actual picture) and one for chroma (the color). The panel flashes on/off a certain number of times/sec and that's the refresh rate. If the refresh rate is 120Hz, any fast motion across the screen can fall between the flashes of the screen, making it look jumpy. At 600Hz, the chance of "slipping between the cracks" is a lot lower and that rate is too fast for most people to see any artifacts or synch problems.


    This is the reason plasma is the industry standard for monitors in high-end residential and broadcast video. For commercial use/digital signage, it's split but it still depends on the application. For brightness vs energy used, LCD/LED wins but for overall picture quality, plasma wins. LCD/LED is getting better but it still has a "fake" look to it. It also has "mosquitos", or 'Pixel creep" Stand close and watch for this- you'll see it on any source. Once you see it, walk away from it slowly and determine how far away it's still visible. That will determine whether it will work for you.
  14. pasta4lnch

    pasta4lnch Supporting Member

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    Any word on Elements? There prices seem too good to he true…
  15. i_got_a_mohawk

    i_got_a_mohawk

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    Don't know if I'm just slower then because I've certainly never seen a noticable difference, even on large screens with live sports. Slipping through the cracks or not, it's getting beyond what our eyes can actually see.

    Plasma's do have their upsides, without a doubt, it's a more mature technology.

    When looking around a few weeks back, there certainly wasn't massive differences side by side.

    Must admit I'm not familiar with "pixel" creep or "mosquitos", the biggest issue I've noticed (with my LED at least) is during black or very dark display screens, there is light leakage in the top corners. I still stand by picking what speaks to you when you're in a store and wouldn't write off plasma, while it is older, it's also more mature. Most of the bugs have been worked out and they've honed it more than the newer techs. You'll have pro's and con's with both.
  16. 6jase5

    6jase5 Mammogram is down but I'm working manually Gold Supporting Member

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    Plasma is the way to go imo. I have a bright room, huge windows, glare isn't an issue. Panasonic TC-P55GT50. I did a lot of research. The ST50 is also great for less and VT50 is their top of the line. About $2k for top of the line, close too $1K for ST last I checked if you are a bargain watcher like me. Got mine on cyber monday for cheap.

    I had LED's prior to this and was very hesitant to go plasma. My neighbor has a new high end Samsung LED and after seeing mine he's regretting his choice, plus the extra $800 he spent. I switch between THX setting during the day (brighter) and a custom calibration that I found online for nighttime. All of 2 buttons to change the setting.

    It's like I never saw hi-def before and like I said, I was very very leery to go plasma and took the gamble thanks to Amazon's return policy. No way is this going back.
  17. Randyt

    Randyt Supporting Member

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    big fan of my Sharp Aquos TV's...
  18. lowfreq33

    lowfreq33

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    I guess I just don't care that much about TV's. I've got a 32" Sanyo that was in a flood and still has a haze of residue inside the screen. As cheap as flatscreens are these days I'll probably upgrade at some point to a 42", but I'm just not picky about brands. It's not like the TV is going to make the movie or show any better.
  19. AmpedSilence

    AmpedSilence

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    Did you forget to add a "/sarcasm" there :bag:

    Standard definition on an HDTV is very painful to watch for me. Plasma screens for 40" and up, LED for smaller sets. Samsung makes some good screens for sure!
  20. Solarmist

    Solarmist 15 miles from Mt Rainier Supporting Member

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    ^ What wood be a good TV for standard def in the 37" to 42" range?

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