The Official "I need help with a new TV purchase" thread

Discussion in 'Gator Bytes' started by helix139, Aug 8, 2007.

  1. kito0712
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    kito0712 VIP Member

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    Here we go.

    1. What is your total home theater budget (TV and surround system)?
    $2500

    2. On a scale of 1 to 10, how much do you value sound as compared to your TV? 1 is you don't care at all about sound, you just want a TV, and 10 is you HAVE to have the best surround sound, even if it may cut back on your TV size and quality.
    7

    3. Do you have any specific discount club memberships? (i.e. Sam's, Costco, etc.)
    Sam's

    4. Do you need to wall mount it or have other reasons you would only consider flat panel and not rear projection or front projection?
    Don't have to wall mounted

    4. Any restrictions on size?
    None

    5. What is your typical viewing distance going to be?
    Viewing distance of 9'.

    6. Do you plan to use it as a computer monitor?
    No

    7. Do you plan to game on it? if so, what system(s)?
    Yes, PS3 and lots of it

    8. On a scale of (1) to (10), rate which is more important to you within your size restrictions, picture quality, or size? (1) being quality is most important (i.e. you are willing to sacrifice a few inches for the best picture possible as long as it meets your minimum needed size ), and (10) being size is most important (i.e. picture quality is not important at all if you can get the biggest screen possible).
    1

    9. Are there any brands you definitely prefer? Are there any you definitely dislike?
    Doesn't matter

    10. Do you have to buy your TV in a brick and mortar store (i.e. Best Buy) or would you be willing to buy it online?
    Not online

    11. What is the layout of your room, and where will your TV be situated? be sure to disclose any windows, lamps, or other ambient light sources that you would not be willing to cover with curtains (NOT blinds).
    The room is 16X12. It has a large window, which is covered by curtains, on the left perpendicular wall that faces south and french doors across the wall from where the TV will be located.

    12. Do you have an available wall that is 60" or larger and are you willing to consider front projection?
    Yes

    13. Any aesthetic requirements we should be aware of?
    None

    14. Do you have any discounts with any retailers or vendors?
    None

    15. What is your typical viewing content? (dramas, sports, action, etc.)?
    Dramas, Sports and Action

    16. Are you planning on a professional installation, or are you the DIY type?
    DYI

    17. If you get a flat panel, will you want to wall mount it and will you want a stationary mount or something that pulls out from the wall and pivots your TV to an angle?
    Stationary

    18. Anything else we should be aware of (i.e. mounting over fireplace, etc.)?
    None

    And yes lawyer I do want to have some type of sorround system, not as pricey as the $1000 one you showed, but something around $300-$400 range. BTW, thank you both for your input.
  2. LeafUF
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    LeafUF Well-Known Member

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    I follow this thread because I find it very interesting seeing the suggestions and knowing that down the line I will be upgrading myself. So seeing the recommendations is great. But, I am shocked at how many people refuse to make these purchases online. And I am not sure I understand why. With shipping when I bought my last TV I still saved over $300 on store price. JMO but that turns your $400 sound budget into $700. Sorry for the rant and getting off topic. I am just curious as to why more people aren't willing to shop online for electronics.
  3. uflawyer
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    uflawyer Well-Known Member

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    It is very difficult to get a decent surround system for $400. Here is a decent speaker system for $300.
    http://www.acousticsounddesign.com/core/view_BigProduct.cfm?pid=249&sc=27
    This does not include a subwoofer. Nor does it include a A/V receiver.

    If your budget does not allow you spend about $600-$700 I would recommend that forego the Surround system until you get the $ together.

    I know I sound like a broken record, but my surround system makes more people (especially myself) go "WOW" than my 165 inch HD TV. Sound turns a movie into an experience. Before you spend the $$ on a TV without Surround, go to home theater store (not Best Buy) and listen to a good system. I bet you are blown away.:joecool:
  4. helix139
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    helix139 Premium Member

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    There are going to be some great deals to be had on some LCD's in your size range (37-47") in the coming weeks. I know for a fact that Sears will have a 46" Sharp LCD going for less than $1000 (check bfads.net) on black friday. My recommendation is with that budget, spend $1000-1500 on an LCD (quality can be had in the price range easily) and put the rest into a decent sound system. Also take a look at the Philips models that Sam's carries. I have a Philips that I will put up against any comparable (1080p 60hz) LCD, and they run less than the Sonys and Sammys.
  5. veridicusgator
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    veridicusgator New Member

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    The TV Game

    MrsV and I would enjoy suggestions....

    This Flick Photo of our Renovation Plans may be helpful...

    [​IMG]

    1. Budget....

    LOL... we need to see how much is left when this renno is done, but we'd be okay if we were around $3K. I know we don't want to climb over $4K.

    2. On a scale of 1 to 10, sound to TV? .... 7 to 9... it isn't a deal breaker, but we are looking to do things right... within reason.

    3. Discount Clubs? ... Nope.

    4. Mounting and Size? The above flickr photo description will help frame what we have to consider. Something with a bulky base will not work.

    5. Viewing distance? Most people will be watching it at a distance of probably four to eight feet.

    6. Computer Monitor use? Probably not. There is another TV in another room that has that duty.

    7. Gaming ... same answer as above really.

    8. On a scale of (1) to (10), rate size to quality. Buy the criteria established.... probably a 1 or 2.... the quality is very important. I know that based on our first large TV that we bough at and love... a 34" Sony CRT HD WideScreen.

    9. Brands? None that would deal break, but we have been most happy with our Sony.

    10. Buying Location? I'd be willing to online based on what I have heard from others.... as long as returns/issues were comparable to Brick and Mortar.

    11. What is the layout of your room? The flickr picture will definitely be good for this question. We don't like curtains except stuff that frames the windows. We had blinds up before that did a great job with light in that space so I am not as worried about this.

    12. Do you have an available wall that is 60" or larger and are you willing to consider front projection? This is not really what we are going for.

    13. Any aesthetic requirements we should be aware of? No freaky colors. Silver, Metal, Black... all okay.

    14. Do you have any discounts with any retailers or vendors? -- Nope.

    15. What is your typical viewing content? (dramas, sports, action, etc.)? We watch pretty much anything.

    16. Are you planning on a professional installation, or are you the DIY type? Only if it needs some kind of wall mounting.

    17. If you get a flat panel, will you want to wall mount it and will you want a stationary mount or something that pulls out from the wall and pivots your TV to an angle? We would definitely consider this.

    18. Anything else we should be aware of (i.e. mounting over fireplace, etc.)?
    Yeah... as mentioned in the flickr description it will be over a gas fire place.
  6. helix139
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    helix139 Premium Member

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    Based on what you've told me I'd recommend something in the 37-42" range. You could get away with Plasma if you have something to cover up those french doors in 102 with, but otherwise I'd be worried about glare, and heat from the fireplace also concerns me with plasma. You could try blinds, but I've never had good luck with them. If not, go with an LCD by Sharp, Sony, Philips, or Samsung. You have no need for 1080p so I wouldn't pay extra for it. There will be some deals to be had on Black Friday. Sears has a great deal on a 50" 1080p Panasonic plasma (an absolutely stunning set) that you may already be able to take advantage of, but beware of glare and heat like I mentioned earlier. There is also a 46" Sharp LCD going for $899 as a doorbuster that will be available online to take a look at. I know I said you don't need something quite that big, but hey, since you have the money, the price is right, and the picture on them is phenomenal, why not? There are other deals to be had too, including home theater. Check out bfads.net for some good info on prices.
  7. veridicusgator
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    veridicusgator New Member

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    Thanks for the great info... we'll keep folks posted. I've got a couple of good follow-up questions for our architect now and also some TVs to look at.

    MrsV and I have our first scouting mission later this afternoon. :)
  8. capecodgator
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    capecodgator New Member

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    1. What is your total home theater budget (TV and surround system)?
    $1500

    2. On a scale of 1 to 10, how much do you value sound as compared to your TV? 1 is you don't care at all about sound, you just want a TV, and 10 is you HAVE to have the best surround sound, even if it may cut back on your TV size and quality.
    2

    3. Do you have any specific discount club memberships? (i.e. Sam's, Costco, etc.)
    No

    4. Do you need to wall mount it or have other reasons you would only consider flat panel and not rear projection or front projection?
    No. Actually prefer not to wall mount (old house).

    4. Any restrictions on size?
    Nothing smaller than 37".

    5. What is your typical viewing distance going to be?
    9'

    6. Do you plan to use it as a computer monitor?
    No.

    7. Do you plan to game on it? if so, what system(s)?
    Yes. I have a PS2 and a Wii. Planning on getting rid of PS2 for an XBox 360.

    8. On a scale of (1) to (10), rate which is more important to you within your size restrictions, picture quality, or size? (1) being quality is most important (i.e. you are willing to sacrifice a few inches for the best picture possible as long as it meets your minimum needed size ), and (10) being size is most important (i.e. picture quality is not important at all if you can get the biggest screen possible).
    1

    9. Are there any brands you definitely prefer? Are there any you definitely dislike?
    No preference.

    10. Do you have to buy your TV in a brick and mortar store (i.e. Best Buy) or would you be willing to buy it online?
    Online is fine. Although I hate paying shipping fees.

    11. What is the layout of your room, and where will your TV be situated? be sure to disclose any windows, lamps, or other ambient light sources that you would not be willing to cover with curtains (NOT blinds).
    Room is roughly 15'x30'. At one end of the 30' is a picture window with double-hungs on either side. At the other end is a sliding glass door. The TV will be closer to the slider. There is also a window opposite where the TV is currently situated that splits the room in half.

    12. Do you have an available wall that is 60" or larger and are you willing to consider front projection?
    No.

    13. Any aesthetic requirements we should be aware of?
    No.

    14. Do you have any discounts with any retailers or vendors?
    No.

    15. What is your typical viewing content? (dramas, sports, action, etc.)?
    Sports and sitcoms.

    16. Are you planning on a professional installation, or are you the DIY type?
    DIY type.

    17. If you get a flat panel, will you want to wall mount it and will you want a stationary mount or something that pulls out from the wall and pivots your TV to an angle?
    No.

    18. Anything else we should be aware of (i.e. mounting over fireplace, etc.)?
    No.

    Any suggestions would be helpful. We are leaning towards a 42" plasma, but that is not based on anything scientific. Does anyone know anything about the 42" plasma Panasonic shown on the Best Buy black Friday ad?
    Thanks.
  9. LeafUF
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    LeafUF Well-Known Member

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    Capecod,

    I know nothing about that Plasma but based on this thread posted by Helix you can get it for $599 which is a ridiculous deal any way you look at it.
  10. helix139
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    helix139 Premium Member

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    I would absolutely be wary of plasma because of all the ambient light you have and the fact that you do a fair amount of gaming. If you go with Panasonic, that would eliminate the gaming concerns, but not the glare. I would be leaning toward LCD. Check out my thread on the $700 off any $999 HDTV at best buy. You can get a 42" 1080p panny plasma for $599 if you do indeed decide to go that way and are willing to do a little legwork, and that is a phenomenal set. Like I said though, try to look at LCD. You'll appreciate the lack of glare and I think you can find a pretty comparable picture to plasma also. The $700 off will work there too. You should still have a few hundred left for a sound system.
  11. fastsix
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    fastsix Well-Known Member

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    The new Panasonic Plasmas have an anti glare coating on the screen it does a good job. I have an older 50" Panasonic and my mom has a new 50" Panasonic, the difference is quite noticable. The newer screens have a matte finish, where as mine is very reflective. As for burn in, it's really not that big a deal. My TV is about 3 years old and probably spends half its life with gray bars on the side of the screen (i.e 4:3 shows) - no burn in whatsoever. And the newer plasmas are even less susceptible.

    LCD's are okay - I have a Sharp Aquos 42", but they have their own set of problems. For starters the picture just isn't as good as a Plasma, or at least the Aquos isnt as good as my Panasonic. Maybe it's just personal preference or the just the two particular models, but the plasma is brigher and crisper. The LCD does have more accurate color though The other problem is that LCD panels often times have issues. Sharps have banding, Sony's have clouds etc. What this basically means if that if you put up a gray screen you'll see portions of the screen that differ, in the case of my Aquos there are bands that are darker/lighter. I'm sending it back for a replacement, but I've read stories of people having to go through 3 or 4 before getting a good one. Sending back 42" TVs is a pain.

    You can test your TV using a free DVD you can download.

    http://www.tvblink.com/

    Be warned though, you might end up wishing you hadn't because it's sometimes difficult to notice the problems in regular viewing, but once you notice...you'll see it a lot more often.
  12. Aardvark
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    Aardvark New Member

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  13. Aardvark
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    Aardvark New Member

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  14. Aardvark
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    Aardvark New Member

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  15. TimCasey67
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    TimCasey67 New Member

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    Geez, it's depressing to read this stuff. The tv in my living room went out, so I'm looking for something used on craigslist.com!

    I hope somebody who's getting a nice system will invite us all over for the Superbowl! :)
  16. veridicusgator
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    veridicusgator New Member

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    If our house renos are done by then consider yourself invited. [smile]
  17. Matthanuf06
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    Matthanuf06 New Member

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    Right now I have a 56 inch DLP but I am looking to upgrade my surround sound. Right now my budget is about $800 to start. Although I have no problem with just buying the receiver and a couple front speakers to start with this $800 and then in a few months add some rears/subwoofer/center etc with new funds. I'm a rookie in terms of what is good, what I need etc but I do plan on installing myself. Any suggestions? This is just for an apartment sized room
  18. G8trPM
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    G8trPM New Member

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    I think I just made a mistake. I just bought a Toshiba 40" Regza 40RF35OU for $1,599 at CC. The reviews on CNET are not very good, can anyone give me any advice on if I made a mistake and should trade it in for something else? Our entertainment cabinet can only fit 37.75" wide by 27" tall, so I had to go with this TV or a 37".
  19. uflawyer
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    uflawyer Well-Known Member

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    Here is your receiver.

    http://www.abesofmaine.com/item.do?...GSESID=2twc1wumuhuqwxrigmccbcic&GSCID=23#tabs

    Here is your speaker system.
    http://www.acousticsounddesign.com/core/view_BigProduct.cfm?pid=1269&sc=27

    You will also need a sub
    http://www.acousticsounddesign.com/core/view_BigProduct.cfm?pid=1271&sc=28

    This may me slightly over your budget, so if you have to skimp don't buy the sub until you save some some more $$

    PM with questions.
  20. panamacitygator
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    panamacitygator Ticket Swap Moderator Premium Member

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    I agree with your selections uflawyer, good items.

    Sounds similar to to my Harman Kardon avr-347 with Klipsch Synergy speakers and sub. All are very affordable. I have a little more than 2 grand in mine and iit sounds like a million bucks!

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