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HDTV Recommendations Needed

Old 12-27-08, 03:06 PM
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HDTV Recommendations Needed

I'm finally getting ready to get my HDTV. I've got a profit sharing check coming, and I need to do my research before buying.

I'm trying to keep it to $1100 or less (which limits my options quite a bit) and I want a 46" or 47" model.

Here's what I'm looking at so far:

Toshiba 46RV530U ($998 online)

Sanyo DP46848 ($1048)

Philips 47PFL3603D/F7 ($1098)

Philips 47PFL5603D ($1198)

Samsung LN46A500 ($1098)

I'm just starting and I'm also looking into Sony and LG.

I'm going to use it equally for SD and HD, so I'd like a model that looks decent when viewing something in SD (some HDTV's look pretty poor when watching an SD source).

Any suggestions??

(I should also mention that I'll also need a Blu Ray player to go with the TV, so if you have any suggestions for that I'd be very glad to read them...)

Thanks!

Last edited by B5Erik; 12-27-08 at 03:39 PM.
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Old 12-27-08, 03:15 PM
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I'll be the first to say it, do yourself a favor and check out the Panasonic line of plasmas and LCDs.


EDIT: I would also recommend the Panasonic Blu-ray players. You might find a package deal where the retailer will throw in the BD player for free with the purchase of an HDTV.
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Old 12-27-08, 03:22 PM
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You're right, I should check out the Panasonics - and I'm definitely looking for an LCD...

The question is, "Do they have anything in my price range??"
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Old 12-27-08, 03:28 PM
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^

Well, you can rule out Panasonic. 37" is the largest LCD screen that they have right now. However, their 2009 line should be coming out very soon.
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Old 12-27-08, 03:31 PM
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http://www.6ave.com/shop/Product.aspx?sku=PANTH46PZ80U
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Old 12-27-08, 05:52 PM
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Originally Posted by B5Erik View Post
You're right, I should check out the Panasonics - and I'm definitely looking for an LCD...
Is there a reason you're eliminating the plasmas as an option? A Panasonic plasma would be my first choice, followed by the LCD that dick_grayson posted.

I'd also second the recommendation of Panasonic Blu-ray players --- The DMP-BD35 if you don't need onboard decoding of the new sound formats, the DMP-BD55 if you do.
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Old 12-27-08, 05:55 PM
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Originally Posted by Mr. Salty View Post
A Panasonic plasma would be my first choice, followed by the LCD that dick_grayson posted.
That's not an LCD.
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Old 12-27-08, 07:27 PM
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Originally Posted by Mr. Salty View Post
Is there a reason you're eliminating the plasmas as an option?
As I understand it (and from firsthand knowledge from my dad's old plasma) is that they aren't as durable (don't put them face down or else), and that they suffer burn-in a hell of a lot more than LCD's (my dad's TV had the black bars on the sides burned in, and it was pretty noticeable when watching a widescreen movie or TV show).

I'd also second the recommendation of Panasonic Blu-ray players --- The DMP-BD35 if you don't need onboard decoding of the new sound formats, the DMP-BD55 if you do.
I don't need onboard decoding of new sound formats at this point, but down the line? Who knows? I'll check into both of them. As long as they're profile 2.0 that should be good enough for now. (I'm on my 6th DVD player, so I know down the line I'll end up buying a new one and whichever one I buy first will end up in the bedroom.)

Anyone else second (or third) the Panasonic Blu Ray players? (Particularly the BD35?)
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Old 12-27-08, 07:38 PM
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Originally Posted by B5Erik View Post
that they suffer burn-in a hell of a lot more than LCD's (my dad's TV had the black bars on the sides burned in, and it was pretty noticeable when watching a widescreen movie or TV show).
That really hasn't been a concern with plasmas for somewhere around four years now. You don't want to do anything nutty like set the contrast to torch mode, but you'd have to go out of your way to do anything like that for the past few generations of plasmas.
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Old 12-27-08, 07:48 PM
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But there is still a bit of a concern about burn-in with plasmas (maybe not as much as there used bo be, but I do bump up the contrast) - and then there's the don't put it face down ever thing. It just seems like there are more issues with plasmas than with LCD's.

I just feel more comfortable with the more durable technology.

One question I asked that I am very interested in getting an answer to is the HDTV with SD source picture quality. I've seen some rather disappointing pictures when using SD sources (my mom's LG being one of them - but it looks gorgeous with an HD source).

Anyone know if any of the < $1100 LCD HDTV's have decent picture quality with SD sources?
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Old 12-27-08, 08:04 PM
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if burn-in is your main concern, you should do some more research since it's not a problem any more.....especially w/panasonics (that's not to say it's impossible)


try avsforum and then from there look up plasma burn in or go to audioholics.com and search for it there.
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Old 12-27-08, 08:59 PM
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Originally Posted by B5Erik View Post
But there is still a bit of a concern about burn-in with plasmas (maybe not as much as there used bo be, but I do bump up the contrast) - and then there's the don't put it face down ever thing. It just seems like there are more issues with plasmas than with LCD's.
Maybe you don't want to hear this, but you have been told a pack of FUD. Face down? What does that even relate to? My brother has laid dozens of them on their face, while he installed them. And you should NOT turn up the contrast, regardless of technology type.

One question I asked that I am very interested in getting an answer to is the HDTV with SD source picture quality. I've seen some rather disappointing pictures when using SD sources (my mom's LG being one of them - but it looks gorgeous with an HD source).

Anyone know if any of the < $1100 LCD HDTV's have decent picture quality with SD sources?
Haven't met one. I assume this does, though, based on my experience with a similar model:
http://www.visualapex.com/Panasonic/...-The=PT-AX200U
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Old 12-27-08, 09:03 PM
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Well, I can say this - I've pretty much settled on the Panasonic DMP-BD35K as my Blu Ray player. I'm just bummed that BestBuy.com has the thing on sale for $249.98, but they don't have it in stock, and none of their stores have it in stock, so I can't complete the purchase.

That figures.
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Old 12-27-08, 09:09 PM
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Looks like Amazon is out, too. Must've been a bunch sold for Christmas.
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Old 12-27-08, 09:14 PM
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So now I just need to wait for the right deal on the Panasonic Blu Ray player while I'm trying to figure out which TV to buy.

I'm leaning towards the Toshiba for $998, but I've got to look into it a little more before pulling the trigger. There may be another one that I end up liking more - I'll pay another hundred or two to get a better TV.
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Old 12-27-08, 11:20 PM
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IMO if you are on a budget...and want the best picture....there is really only once choice: the 50" Panasonic plasma. I saw it for $899 at BB. That is an amazing price for what IMO is still one of the best pic's you can get at any price. Heck, when I saw that price, I almost bought one to "retire" my 1 year old 46" LCD to the bar.

Burn is not an issue with modern plasma's. The Panasonic plasma has a better picture then any of the LCD's in your price range. They have better blacks, they have a more natural look and a more 3-D look on HD sources.
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Old 12-27-08, 11:32 PM
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The 50" Panasonic plasma I found on BestBuy.com at that price is only a 720P. While I may reconsider getting a plasma (the jury is still out), I'm pretty set on 1080P.
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Old 12-28-08, 12:57 AM
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Originally Posted by B5Erik View Post
The 50" Panasonic plasma I found on BestBuy.com at that price is only a 720P. While I may reconsider getting a plasma (the jury is still out), I'm pretty set on 1080P.
Well, then there's this if you're willing to spend a little more: http://www.6ave.com/shop/product.aspx?sku=PANTH50PZ80U

The 42-inch 1080p plasma is $845.
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Old 12-28-08, 09:44 AM
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Damn. I knew it. BestBuy.com's price on the Panasonic BD35 was bumped up to $299.98 today. What pisses me off is that the website wouldn't even let me buy the thing on backorder last night.

I've just got to hope that it goes on sale somewhere in the next few weeks.

I'm still undecided on the TV, though - a 46" or 47" 1080P is the only thing I'm absolutely certain about. I'm still leaning towards LCD, but now I'm more confused and uncertain about what to get than I was before...
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Old 12-28-08, 11:32 AM
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Originally Posted by B5Erik View Post
Damn. I knew it. BestBuy.com's price on the Panasonic BD35 was bumped up to $299.98 today. What pisses me off is that the website wouldn't even let me buy the thing on backorder last night.

I've just got to hope that it goes on sale somewhere in the next few weeks.

I'm still undecided on the TV, though - a 46" or 47" 1080P is the only thing I'm absolutely certain about. I'm still leaning towards LCD, but now I'm more confused and uncertain about what to get than I was before...
If you have a Fry's electronics in your area you might want to try in store,I've heard it posted that they have them for $199(if you can find it in stock). If you have a Costco in your area also heard they will be having a $50 off coupon and I think it's $279 so would be $229.
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Old 12-28-08, 03:10 PM
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Originally Posted by B5Erik View Post
The 50" Panasonic plasma I found on BestBuy.com at that price is only a 720P. While I may reconsider getting a plasma (the jury is still out), I'm pretty set on 1080P.
Oh, are you going to use as a computer monitor?

That Panasonic 720p plasma is an overall better picture then any of the 1080p LCD's you are looking at or in your budget. Regardless of source you are using.

Of course if the best picture for the best price is not what you are looking for (and I don't mean that to be an ass, there are a lot of reasons to get a display), then look elsewhere.
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Old 12-28-08, 03:16 PM
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Originally Posted by B5Erik View Post
Damn. I knew it. BestBuy.com's price on the Panasonic BD35 was bumped up to $299.98 today. What pisses me off is that the website wouldn't even let me buy the thing on backorder last night.

I've just got to hope that it goes on sale somewhere in the next few weeks.

I'm still undecided on the TV, though - a 46" or 47" 1080P is the only thing I'm absolutely certain about. I'm still leaning towards LCD, but now I'm more confused and uncertain about what to get than I was before...
What surround receiver and speakers do you have? It might be worth the $40-$50 for the model 55 from Panasonic. See Spiky's EXCELLENT review in another thread.

I asked in the other post, but why are you absolutely certain you want 1080p in such a small set? Are you going to use as a computer monitor? If not, I might suggest doing some more research. Resolution is about the 4th most important factor in overall picture quality. Things such as black levels, color, etc are more important to pq then resolution.

Plus the Plasma's have a 50" set. For the most theater experience, it is very hard to beat "bigger". Heck the bulb in my HD pj is out and has not come in yet. So to watch football today, I hooked up my old X1 projector. I get more "into it" with the bigger pic if not near as sharp (I could watch the game in HD 1080p on our small 46" LCD in the living room).
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Old 12-28-08, 03:32 PM
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fwiw, I have a 720p Panasonic plasma (bought 3 years ago) and I use it as a computer (I'm typing this now on it). I have my computer hooked up to hdmi an it's perfectly clear. I also sit 12 feet away or so. I recently played Call of Duty World at war from my pc to tv and it was incredible. Personally, I'd like to see if 1080p looks better to me using a pc.

Either way, I agree with Sdallnct in that you should be going for best picture quality rather than clutching to these rumors so tightly.
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Old 12-28-08, 03:49 PM
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Just wanted to add I have a 50" 720p Panasonic plasma as well. Love it, baby. So glad I didn't go for a 42" model at the time.
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Old 12-28-08, 03:54 PM
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As far as prices, I just read yesterday (maybe somewhere on this site) that we can expect some better sales starting Jan. 5. The prices were bumped back up for the post-Christmas spending of gift cards.

And obviously I agree with Sdallnct and everyone else. Let this whole LCD thing go and take a more serious look at the Panny plasmas.
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