Question Feels like a bad time to buy a new TV!

HiDefHarry

Standard Member
Hi there,

I've consumed myself in all sorts of reading on here over the last few days. Thanks to everyone who is so friendly and helpful. I've learned a lot. It is a confusing area that's for sure, if you're not particularly technical or haven't bought a TV in a while.

My Sony 50 inch LCD from 2016 has just died. Apparently it can't be repaired and I have been given £450 towards a new one under the warranty. I haven't had a TV die on me so young. This has messed up my set-up and plans a little. I swooped in 2016 to buy a non-4K TV. There weren't many left. 90% were 4K at the time. My Sony had a great picture and as all my sources were HD I felt I had a TV that was just as good as those costing 2-3 times as much. It was £580 at the time.

I had hoped to get 8-10 years (2027 ish) out of it and then perhaps I could replace my Blu-Ray Player, PS4 and sound bar all at once along with a new TV, (assuming they all lasted as long as that). They are all aligned for the HD world but not the 4K world. I also have Sky HD which is the bulk of the TV usage. I like sport/movies. From an environment/landfill perspective I didn't feel comfortable with upgrading or replacing perfectly good stuff, so wanted all the equipment to have a long life.

Of course a new TV now is going to be 4K. So what to do? I sit about 7 feet from my TV and could stretch to a 55 inch although 50 inch is better and wouldn't dominate as much. Using the viewing distance chart I seem to be right on the dividing line of HD/4K.

1. Should I be buying something relatively cheap for 4-5 years to tide me over until all my other equipment is pretty old. Maybe Sony BRAVIA KD49XH8505BU for example. I will just need to accept some of my sources may not be as good as previously because of the upscaling that's now required?

2. Is it worth stretching my budget a little bit e.g. Sony Bravia KD-49XH9505. Would this do a better job with my sources and at least future proof me a little with things like HDR if did upgrade to a PS5 or something in a couple of years time?

3. Should I be looking at something in the 55 inch (£1200-£1500) type of range to really future proof myself? As and when my other sources go I can obviously replace them with UHD/HDR enabled devices? I kind of feel for this option there is no point in doing this unless one source was at least UHD right now. E.g. upgrade to Sky UHD at this point (although that seems to have a lot of issues and will I actually see any benefit on a 55 inch screen?)

I appreciate there is a big dollop of personal preference here, and no wrong or right. I've taken in a lot of info in a very short period of time but am a little confused with where I stand. I wasn't expecting such decisions for another 5 years or so! Many thanks in advance for any thoughts provided.
 

jdevil

Distinguished Member
Don't bother with a cheap TV, you'll regret it in no time. You may think technology has improved a lot but those technological advancements don't hit the cheaper television screens for years to come. I doubt we will see proper HDR on sub £500 TV's for another 2-3 years.

I would go for the XH95, no less unless you can push for an OLED which is about £1,200. I think you will be blown away compared to your 2016 TV if you purchase the XH95/OLED.
 

vickster

Distinguished Member
55xh9505 is £999 and a bigger and better Tv than the 49” (for another £100 only)
Eg Sony BRAVIA KD55XH9505BU

Have a look at the feedback in the Best Buy guide
 

HiDefHarry

Standard Member
Thanks jdevil for your thoughts. Will I be blown away by XH95/OLED if I'm only using HD sources though? I'm a little wary of OLED because of the burn in issue. I watch news channels with tickers, gaming etc. I always have some sort of lighting in my room, not bright but certainly not dark, so assumed LCD would be better in that case.

Thanks vickster. I have learned that 55 inch is the minimum for the best tech nowadays. I'm not sure how everyone has the space unless they are setting up dedicated TV rooms or something! My one concern with the TV you refer to is my TV stand fits in an alcove (TV screen can sit in front) and so it is only about 96cm wide. Any ideas please where the dimensions of the stand with the narrower set up can be found? I've looked through spec sheets but it only details when the legs are set up at the ends.
 

vickster

Distinguished Member
You can buy an aftermarket stand of a more appropriate shape which attaches to the VESA mount points on the back of the TV
 

HiDefHarry

Standard Member
Ah I see thanks. I should have thought there was an option like this. Some TV's seem to come with rubbish stands. Thank you. I've just been experimenting moving my old TV further forward to where a 55 inch would need to go in order to fit. It does encroach a lot more on the room than a 49inch would. I have plenty to think about. Hopefully others too will provide opinions on my earlier questions to make sure I'm not going wrong.
 

vickster

Distinguished Member
The 49xh is not a bad Tv by any means, the 55 is just a bit better for not too much more cash
 

HiDefHarry

Standard Member
Yes I see, makes sense. Interestingly the OLED's are a lot slimmer at the sides. So a 55 OLED would actually fit back into the space really well, especially with a stand that allows the sound bar to sit close to the TV. That wouldn't encroach anywhere near as much as the Sony LCD that has a depth of 7cm. It's amazing the difference that makes. I appreciate I don't really want to pick a TV based on the ergonomics but it is a factor.
 

Dodgexander

Moderator
Its actually approaching pretty good time to buy a TV. That is if you take the perspective of making your cash go furthest each year. A lot of people waste their money and buy TVs when they have just been released when they sell sometimes for more than 50% than they are worth.

Coming soon will be clearance discounts making room for new 2021 stock, and therefore (historically) the best deals on outgoing stock.

As long as you get a good deal, there can never be a bad time to buy a TV. There's not really such a thing as a bad TV, just a bad price.

If you want to maximise your value for money nowadays, and you have usage that aligns with most people who watch TV now, you'll want to focus on getting a TV that can display HDR adequately and without problems. You'll also want to consider no smaller than 55". OLEDs are popular choices, as would be the Sony XH9505. You've received already some good advice above.
 

HiDefHarry

Standard Member
I see what you mean Dodgexander. Thanks for your thoughts. Yes it's not too bad a time of the year to purchase because of the new TV cycles. I was more referring to the fact that I still had a lot of HD equipment that had hopefully a good amount of life left. I would rather have bought in 3 or 4 years time, but you're quite correct about not paying the inflated prices at launch.

I don't have another TV so I am TV less (eek). Despite this am I better waiting? I see stock seems to be erratic at Richer Sounds for these Sony TV's. If I left it too long I guess they could run out?

I'll need to make a decision on 49 inch versus 55 for sure. Thanks again for the posters who have replied. I really appreciate your thoughts.
 

shep1968

Active Member
I have the 49" version of the sony, purchased after help from this forum. I'm watching a variety of TV including sky HD and i'm very happy with it. buy with confidence.
 

Dodgexander

Moderator
The Sony XH9505 actually makes less compromises at smaller sizes compared to other TVs. It only lacks the wide viewing angle filter the 55" and higher versions include.

Apart from that TV, its only really the OLEDs that have similar picture quality at smaller sizes and those TVs more or less cost the same as the 55" versions, which is why its not good value shopping sub 55" nowadays compared to larger.
 

HiDefHarry

Standard Member
Thanks Dodge. Yes I had seen the 48 inch OLED's from Sony & LG and was curious as to why they were so much more expensive than the 55's. Viewing angles are not a concern in that my sofa sits facing the TV squarely.

Based on the really helpful feedback I've had I think it's a choice of:

Sony KD49XH9505BU
Sony KD55XH9505BU
LG OLED55CX5LB
Sony KD55A8BU

I'm not sure there is too much value in trying to see a much cheaper TV through for a few years. I think I would probably regret that as per jdevil's helpful feedback.

The OLED's are a slight worry with the burn in concerns. They are easier to fit into my space though. I can make my room slightly darker as I use lamps rather than ceiling lights and I could just have fewer switched on.

The LCD from Sony is a little chunkier. The 49 Is a really safe choice it seems, but similarly it's not a big leap in price for a much larger screen as per vickster's kind feedback. I would probably also need to purchase a stand with this one.

If I brought the TV slightly closer (about 6 foot from where I sit) a 55 inch screen would be able to maintain it's position on the left here, but then fit in front of the wall on the right hand side. The LCD would need to sit about 7-8cm in front of the wall where the OLED's are much thinner at the edges so would sit tighter to the wall. There would only be about a 25cm gap to the radiator though. I don't know if that would be an issue? The TV stand is only about 96cm wide so a flat central stand that allows the sound bar to sit on it would be a must for one of the 55 inch screens.

Edit - to remove photo
 
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Dodgexander

Moderator
Worth noting the 55" and up XH9505 have adjustable feet, which is another thing the 49" version lacks. You can adjust them to a more central position.

If I was personally buying a 55" I'd go for an OLED since at 55" they are better value against LCD TVs of the same size. At 65" that changes, where OLEDs become more expensive.

But its really up to you whether you want to try and fit a smaller TV better in that gap or not, 48" trims a couple of inches diagonally but I personally wouldn't mind the TV protruding. Bigger is always better in my opinion.

Being near a radiator and fire is a bit of a concern, not so much when not in use. But may heat up the TV more whilst in use.
 

HiDefHarry

Standard Member
Thanks Dodge. I don't use the fire. I don't seem to get cold enough to warrant using it! The radiator is used though and I do feel that would be too close for a 55-inch, where my current 50-inch TV hides behind the wall. The 49-inch would also hide behind the wall as my current TV does, and it's legs would be fine on my stand.

I agree I could probably get used to a 55-inch protruding but a 25cm gap to the radiator doesn't feel large enough.

I'll have to convert my spare bedroom into a TV room one day and get a 75-inch or something and do this properly!
 

HiDefHarry

Standard Member
Thanks again for peoples thoughts. I just thought I'd provide an update. I've decided to rule out the 55-inch screens. I don't think it is good to have a TV less than 30cm from a radiator. I have looked at amending the room layout. With a significant change I could make room for a 65-inch, but the entire room design would be geared completely to the TV, and that's a compromise with the room I'm not willing to make. I just need to accept that with the current room configuration a 50 inch screen is the maximum I can accommodate.

I have realised that the room I use as an office could be adapted to a TV room/office. That may allow a 65/75 inch screen which perhaps could be a fun future project. I'd probably need Sky to go internet only though for that to be worth it, and I think that's probably some way off.

So I need a 50 inch screen or less for my living room. I've ruled out the 48-inch OLED's as I think they are too expensive and I guess being the first ones there are likely to be improvements at least in terms of value over the coming years.

So I think I've narrowed it to the following:

Sony Bravia KD-49XH8505
Sony Bravia KD-49XH9505


There is a £200 price difference here. If mainly using HD sources and no HDR is that £200 worth it? Am I better saving the money towards a potential TV room project in the future or is the jump and future proofing in case I start streaming or upgrading to Sky Q worth the higher model now?

Thanks again for all your help. Nearly there! I'm in danger of making a decision :)
 

HiDefHarry

Standard Member
Thanks Dodge and it seems there are some other improvements at the HD level too. I think the 49XH9505 is the best bet now. It should see me through a few years and perhaps I can look to a larger screen OLED at that point when more of my sources will be relevant for HDR/4K.
 

Dodgexander

Moderator
The XH9505 has a dedicated image processor, if that's what you mean? It will upscale stuff better. Although HD itself is really easy to upscale to 4k, it will mainly be with SD and lower quality material that may notice a difference.

Although with both TVs side by side, you'd have to look for that difference, so I'm not really sure its worth thinking about too much.
 

HiDefHarry

Standard Member
Thanks Dodge and to the other contributors. I’ve ordered the XH9505. I’m without a TV so I’m excited about receiving it.
 

HiDefHarry

Standard Member
I will do. It may take a little while to arrive due to stock but I’ll certainly provide an update when it’s up and running.
 

HiDefHarry

Standard Member
I’m still awaiting a delivery date but I won’t forget to review the TV when it arrives.

While I’ve been waiting I have been taking a in-depth look at my room layouts. I joked above about making the room I use as an office a combined TV room, but actually I think this has real potential. My living room definitely only has room for a 50-inch screen without essentially making it all about the TV. A larger screen would fit but would mean completely compromising the seating layout and focus of the room. I wouldn’t want to do this.

I’d need to sell a couple of small bits of furniture and have a rejig, but I could make a combined office tv room. The room is 13 foot by 8 foot odd and I’d be able to fit a 65-inch screen and 5.1 sound. I’d need to keep Sky in the living room where I’d watch sport and general tv at 1080p or SD. I could ditch the movies and then use the 65-inch for 4K streaming for films and gaming. That split would seem to get the most out of each TV.

A few questions please if that’s ok:

1. How big is the leap from HD with a sound bar and 49-inch to 4K/HDR at 65-inch with a 5.1 setup? Is it worth doing?

2. Bearing in mind this would require a new TV, a receiver, and 5.1 speakers are their technical standards in sync right now? As far as I can tell the sound elements don’t seem to be using HDMI 2.1 etc (not even sure if they need to?)

3. I’d be in no hurry to do this. Would waiting until Spring of 2022 be a good time to purchase these items with regards to the spec at that point? I know from reading here Spring is good for TV’s but maybe sound has its discounts at a different time of year?

Thanks again for your thoughts and hopefully these questions are useful for others too.
 

Dodgexander

Moderator
1. Leap with what? General rule when moving to a larger UHD TV is to only upgrade with the intention to use high quality sources, don't expect everything to be an upgrade and for the TV to polish poorer material and make it look better. With sound it really depends, in terms of surround sound affects a dedicated AVR and 5.1 speaker setup should blow a soundbar out of the water. I'd expect a £1000 AVR and speaker setup to sound as good as a £2000 soundbar, perhaps in some respects better.
2. Depends how you'll use the TV, what you'll watch etc. If you use an AVR and speakers it doesn't really matter which technical standards the TV follows because you'll plug everything into the AV receiver first, and then relay that via the AV receiver to the TV.
3. Spring tends to be a good time to buy as its the time the prior year models tend to be discounted the most, as the new models are announced and released later. Unless you are a gamer who is insistent on HDMI 2.1 VRR and its issues being ironed out I don't really see any reason to wait, nor does it look like in the immediate future there is any game changing technology. Perhaps the biggest change will be brighter OLED TVs, but these will come with a premium.
 

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