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CanalStalkin

Need HDTV purchasing advice

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We are finally making the upgrade to an HDTV. I was wondering if any of you guys had any input. We are looking at a 42 or 47 inch,1080p,120hz. Any brands to steer clear of? I see walmart has a nice vizio for what seems a reasonable price. And this tv will be wall mounted.http://www.walmart.com/ip/Vizio-M420NV/13904836?povid=cat1060825-env258601-module389194-rLink1#ShortReviewTitleBar

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If you have cable or satellite service, most if not all of their HD channels with the exception of the locals is in 720P.  You will get 1080 input from Blue Ray players unless you play a standard DVD in them.  You also get 1080 from your local stations with an off air antenna.

There are three types of HD televisions, plasma, LCD and LED.  Plasma used to be preferred because the LCD picture faded if viewed from an angle.

The plasma is the most expensive to operate generates a lot of heat, and is significantly heavier.  The LCDs have solved the side viewing problem, provide a picture comparable if not equal to the plasma.  The LED is supposed to be a bit more vibrant than the LCD.

They all have excellent picture quality.

Go to the Best Buy web site and check out the consumer ratings for the various televisions.  You can also read the customers' reviews for additional input.

Keep in mind, when doing side by side comparisons in a store that any glaring difference in picture quality can be due to variations in the settings by whoever "adjusted" them for display.

For brands, most of them are fine, but you cannot go wrong with (in no particular order), Samsung, Sony, Phillips, Panasonic, LG.  The econo models such as Vizio are also fine.  The lower prices are often because they have fewer features.  Features you are not likely to use.

One other plus is that high defs have a longer viewing life than the old cathode ray picture tubes.

Blue Ray players can be had for less than a hundred bucks.  The discs are ten to fifteen bucks more than a standard DVD.  But, the player will "upconvert" the standard DVD to doggone near HD quality.  Somehow it takes the info from the disc and increases the pixels to provide a sharper image.  In some cases, these old eyes cannot see a clear difference between them.

Now, I'll throw a monkey wrench into your decision making.  There are also 3D high def televisions on the market.  If we were buying today, I'd consider getting one.  They are definitely more pricey for now.  But the picture is amazing.

Check out the display at a store like Best Buy where they will have a few on display. 

High def, when you first get it, is hypnotic because of the excellent picture quality.  We have two of them.  At first, I'd avoid the regular tvs we have in a couple of the bedrooms.  Just had to watch everything in high def.

Now, I'll watch either.

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would recommend that model vizio...have had one in the man-cave for over a year and have had no complaints with it...just make sure it's the 120 hz and not the 60hz model...there is a difference in the fluidness of the picture.

all sony in the mainroom...hdtv, blue-ray and sound system...don't know that you can go wrong there either.

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One thing to think about is placement in the room, if it's anywhere that will get a glare throughout the day, I'd stay away from plasma.  My parents have a 42'' Plasma Visio that is a great TV, great picture and sound, it does get a little warm after extended viewing.  They seem to be very good TVs for the money, the one you posted looks like a great deal. I have a 52" LCD Sony Bravia that we got last year at Best Buy during the pre black friday sales.  Really like it, all of our mainroom equipment is Sony with the exception of the Wii.

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I have a few friends with Vizios and they are very pleased with the picture.

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Everyone says "stay away from plasma" and I don't get it. Except for the extra weight and they are heavy, but you forget that as soon as it's hung on the wall. The heat that comes from the screen is negligible, you really have to put your hand within an inch of the screen to feel it. I have had a 50" Magnavox for about 2 years and it is amazing in every respect. Video games, HD TV & movies, you name it. Plasma lasts longer, performs better and the best part, they are 20% or more cheaper to buy than LCD. Don't avoid plasma screens. Do your homework and compare them.

Ronnie

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STAY AWAY FROM SAMSUNG PLASMA!!!!  I got one (samsung plasma 50'') January and it had 4 service calls on it within the first 3 months before they replaced it!  Now the replacement is messing up and I dont even want another replacement!  STAY FAR AWAY FROM SAMSUNG PLASMA!!  Also I have a Mitsubishi 73'' rear projection flat screen that is awesome and I have a 37'' Toshiba 720 60 htz that I got several (4-5)years ago that is in my bedroom and it still works great!

Also on a side note, I purchased a vizio 42'' 1080 120 htz for my mother/father inlaw for xmas, so I hope they are good!  Not the edge lit led like you are looking at but costco has them on sale for $529!

Jeff

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If you've got the cash, the Samsung LED's are just ridiculous.  I haven't had a TV in my house that has a better picture.  Loved my first one so much I went out and bought a second one.  Toshiba also makes a fantastic TV.  I've got a Toshiba Regza in my bedroom and have had no complaints about that thing at all.  Vizio makes a decent TV.  Nothing great, nothing bad.  You'll get a pretty good picture quality, without the features of the other TV's.  The lower priced TV's will also have a weaker processor inside of them.  You'll end up with motion blur on most of those units when you're watching something thats moving very quickly across the screen.  As far as the 3D goes, I was not impressed at all with it.  I initially wanted to get one for the kids, but the picture quality was really bad.  I'll wait a year or two so they can refine the 3D imaging.

Do yourself a favor and spend some time shopping around.  Go to a store and compare a bunch of different models and see what you like.

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I admit I'm a bit of a video snob, since I come from a broadcast video production background.  So I have Pioneer Elite Series plasma screen TVs.  Really, these are the only HTDV sets that have true blacks (which means better colors). These are amazing sets, but probably overkill for most people.

My next recommendation would be a Sony.  But not just any Sony.  Don't run out and buy the cheapest you can find.  That's a common mistake most electronic consumers make.

What most people don't know, is that electronic manufacturers build "A", "B", and "C", versions of most models.  The "A" versions have the highest quality, while the "C" versions do not. 

Many times, you'll be price shopping for the same model across retailers, and find  a "really good deal" from one or two places.  Be careful!  Those are most likely "C" versions.  So you're NOT comparing apples-to-apples!

The best way to tell is to look at the full model number on the box, or on the serial number.  Sometimes there's an A, B, or C in the number.

That's a long-winded way of saying, "Stay away from the bargain discount stores!"

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How do you like that Elite Glenn.  I'm assuming it's the Kuro.  My uncle has one and loves it.  One reason why I bought the LED I did is because of the true black is has.  There is no replacement for a really deep black color.

As far as Sony goes, I loved my old Sony.  Shame it finally took a dump on me.  I had to replace bulbs far too often, and the LCD panel finally started to go on it.  I miss that TV.   :'(

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Wow thanks for all the tips! My mom isnt a huge tv watcher and isn't too thrilled about spending a ton on a set. She is looking to spend 700 or less. Thats why that vizio caught me eye. Another thing I wanted to ask is how does LED compare to LCD...I see a review saying there is some background bleeding through that occurs with LED? Im not sure if its a new technology that has a few quirks still. Is it safer to go with LCD?

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I've had a Vizio for about a year and love it.

I have been told by someone that seemed credible that Vizio is actually a subdivision of Sony.

I have also been told by a different source that the PlayStation 3 manual actually recommends Vizio T.V.'s for game play, or at least used to when the P.S. 3 first came out.

I really don't know. I do not own a PlayStation 3 and have had no need to tear my T.V. apart to see if it has Sony guts in it.

Either way I have been happy with my Vizio.

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I've had a Vizio for about a year and love it.

I have been told by someone that seemed credible that Vizio is actually a subdivision of Sony.

I have also been told by a different source that the PlayStation 3 manual actually recommends Vizio T.V.'s for game play, or at least used to when the P.S. 3 first came out.

I really don't know. I do not own a PlayStation 3 and have had no need to tear my T.V. apart to see if it has Sony guts in it.

Either way I have been happy with my Vizio.

AmTran Tech out of Taiwan makes Vizio products.  The LCD screens they use are made by LG.  The Plasma models are a lower grade screen made by Panasonic.

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AmTran Tech out of Taiwan makes Vizio products. The LCD screens they use are made by LG. The Plasma models are a lower grade screen made by Panasonic.

Not the first time I've been wrong...

:-[

37", 1080 p, 120 refresh rate, and bought for around $400.

I'm happy with the T.V.

;D

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We just upgraded from a crt t.v. We looked at all brands in the 50" size, except for the LED's, to spendy for us..We wanted to stay under 800.00 we wound up really liking the Samsung plasma 50".

My Son has had a Samsung 42" LCD for a couple of years, and never had any problems with it.

We liked the quality of the picture compared to others in that price range, we got it for just a tad over 700.00 OTD..I'd buy another in the future.

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Price of these tv's have really come down, Samsung plasma, 42" cost me about $1450 3 years ago.  It has been a solid performer, I would buy another

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I just got the Google Sony TV, its pretty sweet. Especially if you want to surf the web on the big screen. I have the 46" model and the picture is beautiful. I think they sell for around $1,400.

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When I sold Pioneer plasmas I recommended them highly.  Beautiful picture, but I understand they are getting out of the plasma TV market.  Too bad, they are very nice.

I own a 50" Panasonic plasma which is great.  They had an issue a year ago and had a bad problem with alot of their sets, but I think they have it worked out now.  As soon as that is confirmed, I would put full faith in them again.

I hate to hear the bad luck with the Samsung plasma by one poster. Oddly enough they generally got some of the best reviews.  My uncle just purchased one from me, and does fine so far, but he needs to upgrade his satellite signal to HD.

Plasmas still have the most accurate color.  LED-LCD TVs have caught the LCD world up to a closer standard, but still plasmas have the best detail. 

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How do you like that Elite Glenn. I'm assuming it's the Kuro. My uncle has one and loves it. One reason why I bought the LED I did is because of the true black is has. There is no replacement for a really deep black color.

As far as Sony goes, I loved my old Sony. Shame it finally took a dump on me. I had to replace bulbs far too often, and the LCD panel finally started to go on it. I miss that TV. :'(

We absolutely love them.  Ours is the version before the Kuro, so they don't have the auto-adjust feature.  But man are they awesome.  You've never played Halo until you've done it on a 50" plasma!  :D

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For the last year I've been using a 55" LG LED unit that is absolutely great.  Newer ones are now backlit.  More expensive and frankly I couldn't see the difference when viewing them side by side.  Consumer Reports always rates the LG sets highly.

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I admit I'm a bit of a video snob, since I come from a broadcast video production background. So I have Pioneer Elite Series plasma screen TVs. Really, these are the only HTDV sets that have true blacks (which means better colors). These are amazing sets, but probably overkill for most people.

My next recommendation would be a Sony. But not just any Sony. Don't run out and buy the cheapest you can find. That's a common mistake most electronic consumers make.

What most people don't know, is that electronic manufacturers build "A", "B", and "C", versions of most models. The "A" versions have the highest quality, while the "C" versions do not.

Many times, you'll be price shopping for the same model across retailers, and find a "really good deal" from one or two places. Be careful! Those are most likely "C" versions. So you're NOT comparing apples-to-apples!

The best way to tell is to look at the full model number on the box, or on the serial number. Sometimes there's an A, B, or C in the number.

That's a long-winded way of saying, "Stay away from the bargain discount stores!"

Everything Glenn said is right!!  I went through the whole process about 2 years ago when remodeling my house.  I ended up with a Sony Bravia LCD KDL-52W4100 which at the time was the "top rated"  LCD for videophiles. The Pioneer Elite Plasma though is considered the Golden standard when it comes to picture quality then.  I think now the top dog is the Panasonic Premier Plasma.

Don't compare TVs at the box store though, most sets are set way too bright to attract your attention, but for ideal viewing its not what you need.  Also, make sure you don't have a screen with GLARE, if your video room is not perfectly dark and then its vital you have a glare free screen those nice shiny screens that show fingerprints are great when you are looking at them in a perfect scenario, but not so great otherwise.  That was  a major factor when I purchased my tv.  Also look at some high end home theater magazines or websites for reviews, they run the sets through a battery of OBJECTIVE test and compare stuff you would never think about.  Not sure about now, but Vizios back then were ridiculed for lack of color quality and edge image distortion.

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Well I didnt order the LED backlit vizio. They had a normal 42 inch,LCD, 1080p, 120hz vizio for just 558. About a hundred bucks cheaper than the LED backlit. Being on a budget I jumped on it. Should be here by friday (says walmart.com). Appreciate the input guys.

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Enjoy it!  Having a nice new high def tv is so much fun.

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