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alb
06-11-2009, 22:42
I'm under pressure to buy a new telly for the living room. We don't have one in there now because it was in the way of the speakers, so i moved it out. It wasn't used much anyway.
To save space i'm going to have to relent and buy one of these 32" LCD things, and wall mount it. Don't know anything about them, and need some advice please.
Judging by the number of broken ones for sale, i'm guessing they're not as reliable as the old CRT type.
If i had more room i'd buy a secondhand CRT again, but thats impractical.

Is there anything i should look out for, or avoid?
Do they need protection from mains spikes etc?
Is secondhand too risky?
Am i being unnecessarily paranoid?
I don't want to be spending more than 400 on something that isn't really a priority in this house.

Ali Tait
06-11-2009, 22:58
I'm no expert,but for that size of lcd,I think the Sony Bravia has a very good picture.You're probably best waiting till the January sales if you can,should get it for a good price.

alb
06-11-2009, 23:05
Thanks Ali.

Need this before Christmas, but no problem because the January sales will be starting soon anyway.:)
Probably won't be able to afford the Sony range.
I'm going to see what Costco has to offer this weekend.

Ali Tait
06-11-2009, 23:13
Sorry no idea what they cost.My mum has one and it's very good.Secondhand maybe?

mercury1 (trolling as Dave K)
06-11-2009, 23:20
I'm no expert,but for that size of lcd,I think the Sony Bravia has a very good picture.You're probably best waiting till the January sales if you can,should get it for a good price.

Hi Al,
FWIW I thoroughly agree with Ali. I have a 40" Bravia LCD and the picture (and sound) is brilliant (and superb on Hi-Def, IMHO). I confess to being a fan of all things Sony, and they tend to be a bit more expensive than their competitors, but well worth the extra, IMHO/E.
If you want to lead, rather than follow the herd, I've been very impressed lately with the picture quality on the new LED sets (Samsung ?) - brilliant picture, lower leccy consumption, but reliability is an unknown (too new) and you pays to lead the fashion.
If it helps (don't know where you live) I have a Costco card and would be happy to take a trip round their Sheffield branch with you to view, and buy if so minded. I believe that they are cheaper than many but may not be the cheapest - they do have a good selection of makes and sizes though, to enable you to focus on one or two perhaps. Let me know if I can help further.
EDIT:
Written before you and Ali exchanged replies - sorry.
Cheers,

Stratmangler
06-11-2009, 23:24
Hi Al,

You could do a lot worse than one of these (http://www.richersounds.com/product/lcd-tv/samsung/le32b530/sams-le32b530) - Samsung are pretty good at upscaling normal telly up to HiDef spec too.

Chris:)

The Vinyl Adventure
06-11-2009, 23:29
right, i work in a shop that sells tvs cameras hifi etc. its a small independant shop and im going to tell you some things about what i have learnt in the last 4

- dont buy a tv for spec - buy for reliability -

we sell sony and panasonic... we have only sold pannys since march. previous to pannys we sold LG, previous to LG we sold sharp.
we used to sell a lot of sharp tvs because they were cheap - maybe 5% came back faulty (we did sell a lot of graded models, that might explain this)
when we sold LG (only a few months) we only had maybe 1 or 2 back.. i couldnt give you a honest percentage
i have been selling sonys for 4 years, i can honestly say we have had one with a faulty hdmi socket (maybe the customers fault), one with a messed up picture (sonys fault) and one that didnt tune (sonys fault) .. good record, yes! maybe we, as a store, have been lucky? maybe....?
the store manager of the shop i work in is good mates with a guy who works at apollo2000 (james), over the years i have got to know him and we have had a few drinks etc. usually work related, and the convo of tvs comes up. he says the same as we do - sony and panny are the most reliable!
i cant speak for pannys having only being selling them since march (and i had a faulty one (bought of james from appolo the year before)) .. but james says his experience is that thay are as reliable as sonys!!
think about it like this:
sony - 500 - lasts 10 years.
samsung - 400 - lats 5 years....
sony costs you 50 a year!
samsung cost you 80 a year
make sence?

-dont buy a tv for spec buy for picture-

you will read a lot of shite about tv picture, dont buy any of it... its all crap! bar resolution and physical spec, its all nonsense.. you can only judge a tv on the picture on the screen that you see! i prefer plasma, not everyone does... its personal taste!

i hope that helps...

alb
06-11-2009, 23:31
A kind offer Mr Mercury1, but we have a local Costco and Makro around Chester.
I have cards for both but i'm not convinced Makro are all that cheap.
The big attraction with Costco is their decent returns policy if something goes wrong..
I notice Richer Sounds can sell me a TV with an extended guarantee, and still be cheaper than other places.
If i can get a meaningful warranty, i don't suppose it matters too much what i buy.

The Vinyl Adventure
06-11-2009, 23:34
If you want to lead, rather than follow the herd, I've been very impressed lately with the picture quality on the new LED sets (Samsung ?) - brilliant picture, lower leccy consumption, but reliability is an unknown (too new) and you pays to lead the fashion.


they are not led tvs, they are led backlit tvs. sony have been doing it on their top end models for 2 years. its not that new a technology, so there shouldnt be much risk of fault beyond the normal samsung risk of fault! (ref previous post)

The Vinyl Adventure
06-11-2009, 23:38
A kind offer Mr Mercury1, but we have a local Costco and Makro around Chester.
I have cards for both but i'm not convinced Makro are all that cheap.
The big attraction with Costco is their decent returns policy if something goes wrong..
I notice Richer Sounds can sell me a TV with an extended guarantee, and still be cheaper than other places.
If i can get a meaningful warranty, i don't suppose it matters too much what i buy.

i am working at the shop on monday and will happily quote you and talkyou through some of the specs etc/things to ignor! i doubt we would be competative once shipping is taken into accout but as a "prospective customer" i could wing it giving you as much advice as you need :)

Alex_UK
06-11-2009, 23:44
32" is too small for plasma - I have Panasonic 42" plasma in living room - fantastic - but 32" LCD LG in bedroom, been fine too, but not used much. I wouldn't disagree with Hamish, but I also recommended a 32" Samsung LCD to my in laws (as Stratmangler suggests) which is doing fine, too. I honestly think the quality of TVs has improved so much in the last 10 years that any "decent" make will be fine, don't worry about the HD specs unless you intend on spending money on Sky HD/Blu-Ray - and then do as Hamish says and worry just about the picture (720P, for instance, is better IMHO than 1080i if you trust your eyes.)

alb
06-11-2009, 23:57
Good post Hamish thanks.
I'm not concerned with specs, because the only thing i'm plugging into it, is the aerial, and maybe the stereo. However i do have to set a limit on my spending.
If it breaks after a couple of years under warranty, then it won't be a problem for me. We still have the 15 year old Philips tv in the other room.

The Vinyl Adventure
07-11-2009, 00:00
... I honestly think the quality of TVs has improved so much in the last 10 years that any "decent" make will be fine, ....

i am sorry to have to disagree with this, as everything else in the post is spot on! alex, i am mearly speaking from my experience, but sony and pannys are far more reliable than the other brands!
example: i sold a chap a dvd player about 2 years back. he hapend to pop in the shop the other day on a day i was there, he told me of an issue with is 3 year old toshiba. basically since the 30/09/09 retune his tv has got in a mess. i went round there last week and tried to retune it... it got all the channels but they were compleltly out of order. when i rang apollo (wo he got the tele off) they told me the only way to fix it was to re organise the channels manually - took me 45mins!!
toshiba, 3 years old... Shite!

The Vinyl Adventure
07-11-2009, 00:09
Good post Hamish thanks.
I'm not concerned with specs, because the only thing i'm plugging into it, is the aerial, and maybe the stereo. However i do have to set a limit on my spending.
If it breaks after a couple of years under warranty, then it won't be a problem for me. We still have the 15 year old Philips tv in the other room.

as a side point, dont buy any 5 year warantees from currys or whatever, most brands have free 5 year g'tees for most of the year! currys coned a lot of people out of g'tee money recently when you could have had a free one from panny! completely unethical.. but it happened!

anyway,
this
http://www.amazon.co.uk/exec/obidos/ASIN/B001RCU7F8/300002769-21/?m=A3P5ROKL5A1OLE
is the second up in the sony range! its a "v" seires,much nicer than the "s" series! as i said im happy to give you a quote on a price with 5 year g'tee (i could also give yu a 50 discount just coz i can)

alb
07-11-2009, 00:10
Hurriedly crosses Toshiba off list.:)

Alex_UK
07-11-2009, 00:11
Don't be sorry Hamish, you're the expert here, I was merely observing that telly's I've bought in the the last decade are far more reliable than those that went before, whatever the make - which is true of most things, I think - modern manufacturing and quality control generally mean reliability.

alb
07-11-2009, 00:14
dont buy any 5 year warantees from currys

I wouldn't buy anything from Currys.:)

alb
07-11-2009, 00:18
I was merely observing that telly's I've bought in the the last decade are far more reliable than those that went before,

Thats interesting, because i never had a problem with older CRT TVs. This is why i'm hesitant about buying a new one.

The Vinyl Adventure
07-11-2009, 00:18
the main problem at the moment seems to be the fact that to sell stuff manufacturers are cutting cost. this years gen of tvs, cameras, radios ... etc... all seem to be more plasticy and crappy in the hand!! quality control, in my view, is less of an issue to these big companies, almost on a year by year basis!
make it, sell it, replace it.. all cheap! thats the way the world is going
we sell "linsar" tv's.. they have a 1 year replacement g'tee!! great!! ... no ... it just means they make tem so cheap they arent worth fixing! what a shoddy worl we live in!!

The Vinyl Adventure
07-11-2009, 00:21
Thats interesting, because i never had a problem with older CRT TVs. This is why i'm hesitant about buying a new one.

ref my previous post!! older stuff was made to last or be repaired... now its made to work or be replaced! if you are fortunate you have a free extended 5 year g'tee, if not by your poor self

Alex_UK
07-11-2009, 00:28
Thats interesting, because i never had a problem with older CRT TVs. This is why i'm hesitant about buying a new one.

I must have just been unlucky then!

The Grand Wazoo
07-11-2009, 00:38
ref my previous post!! older stuff was made to last or be repaired... now its made to work or be replaced! if you are fortunate you have a free extended 5 year g'tee, if not by your poor self

Well, just you & The Sale of Goods Act, which ought to give you 5 years with or without a guarantee.
...........No?

Stratmangler
07-11-2009, 00:45
Well, just you & The Sale of Goods Act, which ought to give you 5 years with or without a guarantee.
...........No?

T'aint necessarily the way it reads here (http://www.berr.gov.uk/whatwedo/consumers/fact-sheets/page38311.html#Q2DoIonlyhaverightsfor30orsomeother figuredaysafterpurchase).

Chris:(

alb
07-11-2009, 00:47
I must have just been unlucky then

Quite possibly Alex.
I've had two TVs in 21 years of marriage, and both were ex rental when i got them. No real problem with either of them. Nothing that could be blamed on the manufacturer.
You see television isn't important to me. Which is why i get all "Scrooge like" at the thought of buying a new one.

The Grand Wazoo
07-11-2009, 01:09
T'aint necessarily the way it reads here (http://www.berr.gov.uk/whatwedo/consumers/fact-sheets/page38311.html#Q2DoIonlyhaverightsfor30orsomeother figuredaysafterpurchase).

Chris:(

Well, I'd argue that if it can be guaranteed to work for 5 years for those people who feel like handing over some cash, then it should also work for the same period for those who don't hand over the cash.
I think anyone should reasonably expect an item of electronics costing several 100's of quid to last at least 5 years. Maybe I'm being too simplistic or naive?

Stratmangler
07-11-2009, 01:20
Well, I'd argue that if it can be guaranteed to work for 5 years for those people who feel like handing over some cash, then it should also work for the same period for those who don't hand over the cash.
I think anyone should reasonably expect an item of electronics costing several 100's of quid to last at least 5 years. Maybe I'm being too simplistic or naive?

I am in agreement with your viewpoint - it's just the sale of goods act that has "grey area" stamped all over it.

Chris:)

Themis
07-11-2009, 07:45
I'm under pressure to buy a new telly for the living room. We don't have one in there now because it was in the way of the speakers, so i moved it out. It wasn't used much anyway.
To save space i'm going to have to relent and buy one of these 32" LCD things, and wall mount it. Don't know anything about them, and need some advice please.
Judging by the number of broken ones for sale, i'm guessing they're not as reliable as the old CRT type.
If i had more room i'd buy a secondhand CRT again, but thats impractical.

Is there anything i should look out for, or avoid?
Do they need protection from mains spikes etc?
Is secondhand too risky?
Am i being unnecessarily paranoid?
I don't want to be spending more than 400 on something that isn't really a priority in this house.
I would advise you to get a Sony or a Philips one. If you don't want to spend unnecessary money, then have a look also at the prices on Internet shops.
A few years ago, I bought a high-quality Philips on an online shop and saved more that 1200 on normal price.

Jason P
07-11-2009, 09:33
Also, if it's not important to you don't be fooled by the whole '1080' hi-def hype. Although for a 32 you're unlikely to get a 1080 set, the 'inferior' lower resolution sets actually cope with standard definition material better IMHO. You could do worse than trawling through this site here:

www.hdtvtest.co.uk (http://www.hdtvtest.co.uk)

but as has been said before, if you stick to Samsung, Panasonic or Sony you won't go far wrong.

Jason

alb
07-11-2009, 11:45
Thanks Jason. Good link.

If you look at the consumer reviews, there's always one who contradicts everyone else.

Quote.

"If you want your Tv to last for more than 2 years don't buy a SONY.
I had a LCD fault rendering the TV completely useless. I asked Sony to consider if the TV should be servicable for more than 12 months. They say I should insure the TV if I want it to last any longer than 12 months.
You decide, but me I will never buy another Sony product again."

Thats an interesting attitude from the manufacturer.

Looking beyond that, it seems the budget Sony models don't really fare any better than other brands.

I had a quick walk around Currys this morning as i happened to be close by. Every TV in my price range was displaying something different, making it impossible to compare much at all. The Toshibas were showing a Samsung advert, work that one out.

Will start looking this afternoon.
I think the final choice will be down to price and a reasonably convincing demo.

The Vinyl Adventure
07-11-2009, 14:01
Thanks Jason. Good link.

If you look at the consumer reviews, there's always one who contradicts everyone else.

Quote.

"If you want your Tv to last for more than 2 years don't buy a SONY.
I had a LCD fault rendering the TV completely useless. I asked Sony to consider if the TV should be servicable for more than 12 months. They say I should insure the TV if I want it to last any longer than 12 months.
You decide, but me I will never buy another Sony product again."

Thats an interesting attitude from the manufacturer.

Looking beyond that, it seems the budget Sony models don't really fare any better than other brands.

I had a quick walk around Currys this morning as i happened to be close by. Every TV in my price range was displaying something different, making it impossible to compare much at all. The Toshibas were showing a Samsung advert, work that one out.

Will start looking this afternoon.
I think the final choice will be down to price and a reasonably convincing demo.

that guy with the faulty sony was either unlucky, or more likely got shouty and swore at them!
realistically any electrical product is garunteed for 5 years, you just have to know your rights!
that said the 5 year g'tee, if they are free, are worth having - you will find for the most part (certainly with panny and sony) that they are domestic and general parts and labour g'tees (just dont chuck your wee remote at and your fine) they just save all the hassle of having to write backwards and forwards from these companys quoting various legislation!

like i said before, if you want some help, you can ring my shop! i wont even try and sell you one!

...

when in the tv shop:
if they want the sale enough they will bend over backwards for you!
if you want to get a "reasonably convincing demo" take your own dvd in! get them to show you a low end sony (or any other brand) next to a high end sony running the same signal at the same time (making sure they split a hdmi signal)! get them to set both to "standard" in the picture settings.
look out for contrasty sceens and look for detail in the shadow areas. also look out for sceens with panning or tracking shots and focus on the edges of stationary objects! the higher speced "100htz" sets should judder less! dont let them fob you off with a demo of an animated film on blue ray.. especially something like "wall-e" that looks good on all tvs especially running with a 24p signal!
whilst you are watching the two tvs tell them not to tell you which one is the most expensive, and not to point out any of the benefits of one over the other!
also ask the guy in the shop which are most reliable, if he says they are all as reliable as each other he is lying and will lie againg, ask to speak to someone else, or leave!

thats what id do anyway!

good luck!

Rare Bird
07-11-2009, 16:55
I bought one of the very first Samsung LCD TV's cost me an absolute fortune.Tripple the price you can get the same for now..Still working perfectly..I was all set to buy the latest Sammy LCD, But i wasnt fond of the cabinet design so i'm kinda stuck till the new range comes out, the resolution is a lot better than our..I don't want to change for change sake but ours is getting on a bit & i'd hate for it to conk out on the wife at christmas, chances are thin but you never know.I regard Samsung as one if not the best LCD TV you can buy.

Jason P
07-11-2009, 17:06
Hamish makes a good point there. Most tellys in DSG shops are set to retina-burning levels of brightness and contrast, the equivalent of turning the bass & treble to 11. A properly set-up telly will look insipid and dull in comparison, but will be fine at home. Demming them with all picture enhancement options off, fed by a good clean signal (not from their cruddy multi-way splitters) will be the way to go. I have to say I'd avoid DSG shops like the plague, but I'd happily go to Richer Sounds (usually impartial advice, and their 19.99 warranty is good value (SOG act notwithstanding)) or John Lewis (provided you can get them to pricematch) or, as suggested before, Costco.

Jason

Rare Bird
07-11-2009, 17:09
Its nice to see most these new LCD TV dumping those shitty SCART connections for HDMI, Far superior interconnection IMHO...Together with DIN, SCARTS are one of the worse connectors ever created.

The Vinyl Adventure
07-11-2009, 17:20
you still need scart for non hidef sky boxes though

Rare Bird
07-11-2009, 18:51
you still need scart for non hidef sky boxes though

Not Sky HD Boxes

alb
07-11-2009, 20:07
Well its all over now, or it will be tomorrow.
My better half spotted this in Costco...

http://www.amazon.co.uk/Samsung-LE40B541P7-40-inch-Widescreen-Freeview/dp/B001UE8LWE/ref=sr_1_4?ie=UTF8&s=electronics&qid=1257623985&sr=8-4

and the decision was made......it seems. Costco was a bit cheaper than Amazon, and offers a 5 year guarantee.

Thanks for all your thoughts on this thread, but obviously things can take a different direction when women are involved.:doh:

Alex_UK
07-11-2009, 20:53
Nice one Al - my advice once you get it home (and Hamish might disagree, of course!) is to find a DVD (assuming you have a DVD player, of course!) that contains the "THX Optimizer" and use it to set-up the levels on your new telly - http://www.thx.com/home/dvd/optimizer/index.html - it's included on all these DVDs - http://www.thx.com/home/dvd/search.html - (you might even have one of them already) and IMHO is an easy and fool-proof way of setting up the levels for realistic viewing. Whatever, enjoy your new telly!

mercury1 (trolling as Dave K)
07-11-2009, 21:33
Nice one Al - my advice once you get it home (and Hamish might disagree, of course!) is to find a DVD (assuming you have a DVD player, of course!) that contains the "THX Optimizer" and use it to set-up the levels on your new telly - http://www.thx.com/home/dvd/optimizer/index.html - it's included on all these DVDs - http://www.thx.com/home/dvd/search.html - (you might even have one of them already) and IMHO is an easy and fool-proof way of setting up the levels for realistic viewing. Whatever, enjoy your new telly!

Hi Alex,
Don't suppose you've got the glasses to help with this test do you? Cost to buy US$1.99, cost to ship US$63.99 - crazy or what?
Cheers,

Alex_UK
07-11-2009, 21:59
Hi Alex,
Don't suppose you've got the glasses to help with this test do you? Cost to buy US$1.99, cost to ship US$63.99 - crazy or what?
Cheers,

I have actually - they were free with What-HiFi a couple of months ago! Not sure where I've put them, but you're welcome to borrow them if I can find them.

That said, on the What-HiFi forum it appears they only actually charge a couple of dollars when you buy them, if you wanted your own set. http://community.whathifi.com/forums/t/6354.aspx

There's also mention of this http://www.amazon.co.uk/Digital-Video-Essentials-Artist-Provided/dp/B00009WW03 being a much better set-up disc, and includes the glasses - though not free of course!

mercury1 (trolling as Dave K)
07-11-2009, 22:43
Hi Alex,
Thanks for the pointers and the offer to lend the glasses. I've taken the safer option and ordered the DV Essentials dvd from Amazon. The listing doesn't mention the inclusion of glasses but other references do. I may be in touch again if the glasses aren't included, so start looking please :) .
Thanks again.

The Vinyl Adventure
08-11-2009, 12:38
It is relativly sound advice to use a thx optimiser.. But I kinda always think that surly George Lucas and his cronies are different to me, and as such I was set the tv to how I like it... Maybe that's daft??
It's like these auto calibration suround sound functions, they never get it right to my ear and I always end up overriding them ... So I just do it my self now! It's my kit and eyes/ears after all, why should I play by other people rules!?
But yeah, I wouldn't say a thx optimiser is bad by any stretch, but don't be ruled by it... It might not be ideal for non thx eastenders etc

Alex_UK
08-11-2009, 14:05
Hmmm... this is interesting; Channel 4 are running a 3d week, and you can get free 3d glasses at Sainsbury's (I just got some when I went for milk) - http://stuff.tv/News/Channel-4-3D-Week-programming-announced-Sainsburys-dishing-out-free-glasses/13594/

Should be fun, but also, I reckon the blue side (left) of the 3d glasses is the same as used in the THX optimizer - you get 2 pairs joined together anyway, should be easy enough to snip them and with a bit of sellotape make your own, in a Blue Peter stylee!

DSJR
08-11-2009, 17:24
TV's have changed a lot in 10 years, but the general picture quailty has got worse, mainly to do with the broadcasts..

Many of you can afford hi-def screens and the DVD/Blue-ray/Sky-HD boxes to feed them, but "normal" broadcasts have been mangled in the way FM has to a degree..

I sold B&O TV's for many years and the best of these were superb telly's with very long and reliable lives (15 - 20 years for a non contrast-thrashed one isn't uncommon). The bad ones were horrid though and shagged after several years...

I still find plasma TV's give the better picture - B&O used to call it "Viewing Comfort." many LCD tellies to me seem to have everything exaggerated and any "pixillation" in the source (or fast-moving images) give me as much of a headache as out-of-phase speakers..

We still have a now elderly Panasonic 28" CRT Widescreen model (28 PL1) and you can buy still good ones in Cash Converters for 70 or so (ex-rental?). If it goes the way of other older Panny's, the tube will give out before the electronics...