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Help narrowing down choices

Superman
12-05-2005, 09:50 PM
After looking online and in several stores for many weeks, it seems there is no perfect HDTV. Every last one of them, no matter what the technology, has some drawback that makes you think twice.

I think Ive narrowed my choices down to these 3:

Sony Grand Wega 50" 3LCD (http://www.costco.com/Browse/Product.aspx?Prodid=11091118&whse=BC&topnav=&browse=)

Samsung 56" DLP (http://www.costco.com/Browse/Product.aspx?Prodid=11067561&whse=BC&topnav=&browse=)

Panasonic 52" LCD (http://www.samsclub.com/eclub/main_shopping.jsp?BV_UseBVCookie=yes&n=0&mt=a&coe=0&oidPath=0:-23542:-23589:-24298:-36941:956272)

The Panasonic has a $200 rebate at Costco right now. The Samsung has a free DVD recorder rebate. I dont know how much Id use it because I have TiVO, but I was thinking of getting a new DVD player with progressive scan, and this has it, so...

I was looking at the JVC LCoS models, but I have read tons of reports that the bulbs are burning out in 3 to 5 months, so Im scared of them now. Too bad, because they look nice and I saw a 50" at Best Buy tonight for just under $2400, and had a stand.

Im on a strict budget of $2700 and not one penny more. That includes any cables I may need (so saith the wife).

My needs are:

A decent viewing angle. Due to the shape of my living room, I sit about 9 feet from the center of the TV. But the far end of my couch is about at a 50 angle, about 12-13 feet away.

I mainly watch DVDs. What little TV I watch would come from DirecTV.

I also have an Xbox. Im by no means a "gamer" but when I play, I want it to look nice.

So those are my priorities and my budget.

Also, if someone has an alternative that would be better than these 3, please post it. Im a n00b at this and my knowledge on this is limited.

And any known bulb issues with any of these manufacturers would be of great help.

Superman
12-05-2005, 11:45 PM
I also saw a Vizio 50" plasma at Costco... Never heard of them before. Is this worth considering?

Emsurfer
12-06-2005, 12:29 AM
Your angles are fine for a RPLCD. I would go with the SONY 3LCD or the Panasonic. But take a look for yourself. If you think the PQ are comparable, then I would go with durability and reliability, SONY or Panasonic.

bboncorr
12-06-2005, 12:41 AM
did you look into the toshiba hm195. its in your price range. it comes with a cablebox built in, tv guide, 2 hdmi, c.c. slot, and it usscales hidh def to 1080p. here is a link to a site with this tv. just punch in your zip code and the site will calculate your shipping charges from each store. this tv is better then any of the ones you picked. its won alot of awards this year. i would stay away from sony unless its a crt. there not to reliable and sony has bad warranty support.

http://www.pricegrabber.com/p__Toshiba_56HM195_56_DLP_Projection_TV,__10462370

Superman
12-06-2005, 07:29 AM
Is there really that much of an advantage of a 3LCD over single LCD?

Ive tried looking for reviews on the Panasonic, but I think its just a Costco/Sams Club model. Cant seem to find anything on it.

daleb
12-06-2005, 07:47 AM
Is there really that much of an advantage of a 3LCD over single LCD?

Ive tried looking for reviews on the Panasonic, but I think its just a Costco/Sams Club model. Cant seem to find anything on it.

All rear projection LCD displays have 3 LCD panels. Don't get lost in the manufacturer's lingo. They come up with new names every year for the same thing.
DLP is different technology, as is Plasma, etc. etc.. Each technology has it's good and bad points. Go by what looks best to you within your budget.

mrconos
12-06-2005, 08:22 AM
Hi Superman,

Wow, that is crazy.

You almost summed up exactly my situation. It was kind of strange....

Anyway, I have been researching very similar to yourself.

Had it narrowed down to Toshiba DLP vs. JVC LCoS. I'll second the person who said the Tosh DLPs look VERY nice. However, I was unable to get this set because the way they are set up with the speakers on the side adds about 10" to the width of the TV, making it too big for my space. I then started looking at the Samsung HL-R5067W (same set you are considering but the 50" model). Looked good the couple times I viewed it at stores. Also got reccomended it two out of two times by sales associates over the JVC at two different stores (mainly due to JVC's technology being less established.) However, the JVC did look good to me as well.

I think I am leaning towards the Samsung myself because I found a really good deal on it. The 50"model is currently on sale for $1,699 at Amazon, and I found a place that will match it, plus there is an additional $75 promo coupon available at that store. Basically, I could get the TV, stand and 5 year warranty for the price of just the TV at some of the more popular local stores.

Hard deal to pass up.

inazsully
12-06-2005, 08:48 AM
I saw it last weekend at Costco for $2499, exactly the same price as the Pioneer 42" next to it. Considering Costco's unreal return policy I'd say the Vizio P50HDM, which comes with a Faroudja DCDI 10 bit processor and uses the latest LG glass, and includes 2 HDMI inputs (the P50HDM is a monitor only), is a terific bargin.

Emsurfer
12-06-2005, 03:15 PM
Is there really that much of an advantage of a 3LCD over single LCD?

Ive tried looking for reviews on the Panasonic, but I think its just a Costco/Sams Club model. Cant seem to find anything on it.

All latest models of RPLCD by SONY, Panasonic, and Hitachi use the 3 LCD panels designed by Epson-Japan. 2004 models which still sell on some on-line stores and E-Bay use single panel.

You have to search using non-costco or Sam's club model numbers to find significant number reviews. Costco and Sam's Club models are almost identical to other "traditional" retail models. Try searching with "Panasonic PT-52LCX65 review". I found plenty.

Emsurfer
12-06-2005, 03:19 PM
did you look into the toshiba hm195. its in your price range. it comes with a cablebox built in, tv guide, 2 hdmi, c.c. slot, and it usscales hidh def to 1080p. here is a link to a site with this tv. just punch in your zip code and the site will calculate your shipping charges from each store. this tv is better then any of the ones you picked. its won alot of awards this year. i would stay away from sony unless its a crt. there not to reliable and sony has bad warranty support.

http://www.pricegrabber.com/p__Toshiba_56HM195_56_DLP_Projection_TV,__10462370

This is your best DLP on the market. I would also consider the Panasonic PT-56DLX75.
:yippee:

Superman
12-06-2005, 03:34 PM
All latest models of RPLCD by SONY, Panasonic, and Hitachi use the 3 LCD panels designed by Epson-Japan. 2004 models which still sell on some on-line stores and E-Bay use single panel.

You have to search using non-costco or Sam's club model numbers to find significant number reviews. Costco and Sam's Club models are almost identical to other "traditional" retail models. Try searching with "Panasonic PT-52LCX65 review". I found plenty.


I did a search for the Panasonic and found that C-Net rates it only average (like 5.1 or 5.5 out iof 10) wheras the Sony was rated about 7.3 or soemthing like that.

I read several owners' comments, and they rated the Panasonic much higher.

Im wondering how much I should pay attention to C-Net, if at all...

Emsurfer
12-06-2005, 03:39 PM
Go look at the TV and you be the judge. What makes the geeks at C-Net a better judge than your own EYE. Reliability-wise, cannot go wrong with Panasonic or SONY. Toshiba too for that matter.

Superman
12-06-2005, 03:41 PM
Yeah, thats true. Its just that Costco is so damn bright. I have serious doubts that bothered to calibrate the things. I guess Ill buy what looks best and take it back if I dont like it. Costco is very good on returns.

TheHinge
12-06-2005, 04:48 PM
Yeah, thats true. Its just that Costco is so damn bright. I have serious doubts that bothered to calibrate the things. I guess Ill buy what looks best and take it back if I dont like it. Costco is very good on returns.


That's exactly what kept me from getting a set from Costco, so far. It's so bright in there I don't know what I'm getting.

daleb
12-06-2005, 05:12 PM
I have serious doubts that bothered to calibrate the things.

Who does?

Superman
12-06-2005, 10:36 PM
Well, I took my stepfather down with me to offer his advice and more importantly, to help me haul the thing back home.

We got there at about 6, and pulled out of the parking lot around 8.

We spent all that time fooling with the settings, trying to see what we can do with the options for the PQ.

I wound up getting the Samsung 56" DLP.

Believe it or not, the Panasonic LCD wound up with better black levels than the Sony, although overall, I think the Sony had a slightly better PQ in general.

But the Samsung ultimately won, and it had a rebate for a free DVD recorder. He thought that picture was bette3r overall, and I had to agree.

I paid $2499.

Ive only watched a little of it. Popped in Episode III and used the THX option to set the colors. The movie looks great.

Popped in Halo 2. I bought the component cables with the optical out. Im seeing detail I didnt know was in the game.

I havent had it long enough to recommend or not, obviously, but I tell you it looks a lot better in my house than it did in Costco, and so far, Im pleased.

Thanx for all the help guys. :)

bboncorr
12-06-2005, 11:44 PM
good luck with the samsung. hope you dont experience any audio lag. samsung is famous for that with there dlps. especially when playing video games.

Emsurfer
12-07-2005, 03:53 AM
Looks like you went with the Samsung HL-R5656W or HLR5656C (Costco model number). Enjoy.

Did you not see the Panasonic and Toshiba DLP at Costco?

Superman
12-07-2005, 06:51 AM
Looks like you went with the Samsung HL-R5656W or HLR5656C (Costco model number). Enjoy.

Did you not see the Panasonic and Toshiba DLP at Costco?

I looked at the Panasonic, and after tweaking it for a while, it actually came down to that and the Samsung.

I went with the Samsung because the picture wasnt quite as good as the Samsung. The color was OK, but it just seemed a little more grainy.

The Toshiba was just out of my price range, especially after the taxes.

If I start noticing any rainbows on the Samsung, Im going to get the Panasonic instead.

I played the Xbox briefly last night. Im not noticing any lip-sync issues. Im using component cables and optical audio.

mrconos
12-07-2005, 08:25 AM
Let me know how the purchase works out for you, I am narrowing in on the 50" Sam.

Was that price you paid including tax? and was it just for the tv? or did you get cables/stand/any kind of warranty?

Superman
12-07-2005, 09:04 AM
Including tax (5%) $2624.99.

Stand was included.

Also, there is a rebate for a free Samsung DVD recorder by mail. I think the offer ends on 12/31.

The rebate can downloaded at Costco's site. (http://www.costco.com/Browse/Product.aspx?Prodid=11067561&whse=BC&topnav=&browse=)

So far, Im still happy. I watched the news this morning, and the SD signal from DirecTV isnt nearly as bad as I thought it would be. Yeah, its not crisp, but I was expecting a lot worse.

mrconos
12-07-2005, 09:14 AM
good deal, I hope to get set without some of the noted problems

Superman
12-07-2005, 09:42 AM
As I said, I just got it and havent watched much of anything. I watched a few minutes of ROTS and The Day After Tomorrow on DVD. Looked great.

I played a few minutes of Halo 2. Looked great. Didnt notice any audio-lag issues, but I didnt play it that long.

I watched Night Court last night and the news this morning. No lip-sync problems, and as I said, the PQ wasnt nearly as bad as I dreaded. Im going out today to get an antenna and see how I do with HDTV reception.

Superman
12-07-2005, 11:42 AM
Well, Im using some old rabbit ears I found and I can get a fairly strong signal. Im watching "The Young and the Restless" to test it out and I can see the stretch marks on this one chick's boobs. LOL

bboncorr
12-07-2005, 02:21 PM
did you have to use a costco card or something. because the toshiba hm195 is priced at $2,200.00 at the site i posted.