HDTV buying

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So we think we’re going to buy ourselves an HDTV.
We’re looking at a 30-37″ LCD at the moment.
Plasma doesn’t seem to go below 40″, and Luisa gave the thumbs-down to CRTs because of their weight and bulk.

LCDs seem to have a limited resolution; most are 1366 x 768, which means native 1080 is not possible.
I guess they scale the image down to fit in 768.
Even the $5,000 US Sharp Aquos LC-37HV4U has this resolution.
There are computer monitors well over this size, so why can’t they make TVs just as big?
Iain mentioned that his computer monitor has inputs for an HDTV signal (HDMI perhaps?),
so getting separate monitor and HDTV tuner components might be an avenue to explore.

This is where I solicit you to add comments with links and info on HDTVs!
I listen to the HDTV Podcast,
which has links in each podcast to lots of HDTV info.
I am going to list some links here I got from them and other places.

Also, below the general info links I’ll put links to specific TV sets, or lists of sets at various online stores and manufacturers.


Specific TVs

entertainment, family, hardware.

About rae

I'm a long-time Mac and iOS developer. I'm also a big fan of Ruby on Rails and relational databases. I tend to work remotely, in my basement with occasional trips to the office. I'm also a big videophile, both TV and film, and can't wait for a good, inexpensive home 4k solution.

8 comments on “HDTV buying

  1. rae Post author

    Hm, perhaps scratch all the above. Luisa has gone thumbs-up again on a CRT HDTV. She made a good point though, that CRT HDTV’s may have more flicker (60 Hz scanning refresh) whereas all the others don’t refresh the same way (each pixel just updates). Well, time to look up CRT’s now!

  2. Jeff K

    You’re starting to look at a good time, the native 1920×1080 screens are beginning to take over. I wouldn’t settle for anything less now. IMHO, the 40% price drop on the 1366×768 tech (in the last 1.5 years) isn’t worth it, but expect a 30% price drop on the 1920×1080 tech within 1 year.

    Not that I’m any less cognitive-biased or hypocritical than any other high-tech equipment owner, but I like the look of the 1366×768 back-lit SONY LCDs that are out and I’d happily replace my 36″ 1920×1080 CRT 4:3 with one. It would suit the living room a bit better. The 46″ 1920×1080 SONY Qualia is er, smaller than what I have and at $20,000 about 6x too expensive for a TV. 1366×768 @ 60″ is going to be fine for me for about 6 more months at least. Once there are over 100 movies on HD-DVD, I might consider replacing 1 of my TVs, but in the mean time, my primary use of 720×480 16:9 from DVDs does in fact fit within 1366×768 16:9. My once-per-week HDTV show (Nova or, rarely, a high-def pay-per-view) are of strikingly good quality, and there is no guarantee the mpeg-2 compression will be able to provide any more detail than 1366×768 is currently showing me. This was certainly true of Dr. Who. Did you catch the hurricane Katrina show on Nova?

  3. Luisa

    Sorry for flip-flopping on “thin” vs. “fat”.

    What Reid didn’t mention is the fact that our living room TV is broken. Or did he mention it in an earlier post? I can’t quite remember and am too lazy to look it up. If you give it a good thump on the “Sony” logo, it’ll right itself for a while. Usually, the longer it’s left on, the better it gets, but last night I couldn’t coax it into displaying a half decent screen no matter how much I thwaked it. (I had planned to watch Home Alone with Ronnie last night. We had to cuddle up in my bedroom lazy-boy instead. He had never seen the movie, and he THOROUGHLY enjoyed it.)

    Whenever Reid started talking about HDTVs, I always said… “Get a job” (well, one that was a little longer lasting than a few months.) Funny how the timing worked out, eh?

  4. Jeff K

    You can borrow my 15 year old 27″ SONY for a little while, if you want time to decide. I don’t use it.

  5. rae Post author

    Hey Jeff, how can your “36″ 1920×1080 CRT” be “4:3”? Isn’t that 16:9? 🙂

    As for borrowing a TV, I like to think this will drive us to get off our duffs and actually get one!

    Hey Hon, do not apologize for flipping. I think I’m good to go either way, really. My main reason for going CRT was to be able to sell you on HDTV with a low, low price. It was a means to an end. And no, I don’t think I’ve mentioned that our TV needs the occasional **THWACK** in just the right spot to get a picture. It seems that the vertical gun is having problems.

    If we’re going to get a new TV, we could make it an interesting project to take the old TV apart and try to fix it. Kind of a learning experience, now that Michael knows how to solder!

  6. Jeff K

    The 4:3 HDTV auto-letterboxes to 16:19 with dark bands top & bottom, just like the 16:9 HDTV automatically changes to 4:3 with dark bands left & right. As for fixing TVs, the 20,000 volts on the CRT gun can be exciting. Most TVs are fixed i n a modular fashion. In my house, the module is exactly the same size as the TV. 🙂

    My 16:9 also has a zoom mode, just like 99% of the other 16:9s and that’s good for DVDs that arent’ anamorphic (which in my case would be really old DVDs or the occasional music video).

  7. Jeff K

    This is Canada in winter. TVs are quadruple-use technology, entertainment, heating with nuclear power, diffuse lighting sources and conservers of natural gas. 🙂

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