Question Help with selecting a new 32 inch smart TV with full Freeview HD tuner for about £400

Discussion in 'What Is The Best TV For You?' started by Figgerty, Jul 10, 2015.

  1. Figgerty

    Figgerty
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    I recently decided to buy a new smart TV and am having problems deciding which model to choose. I currently have a 32 inch LG TV (not smart) but extremely easy to use its features and a good picture. I also have a 26 inch Samsung TV which is not as user friendly as the LG. Also the EPG on the LG is much clearer than the Samsung.

    I was in a large retail store yesterday and asked to see how different a new LG TV is to my old one and was appalled to see that they have changed the central pedestal to two claw like stands on either end of the set. The JLP salesman said the 2015 sets were all like that. Strange indeed, as other manufacturers huge sets still had the central pedestal. I ruled out LG for that reason as I think the two side supports are ugly & look like a modification to increase stability.

    Next, I checked out the other TV's on display and thought the Panasonic had the most natural picture. TBH, all the pictures were good but the colour & contrast was set best on the Panasonic. I asked the salesman to demonstrate how to set up a reminder for a programme later in the day. He found the EPG quickly but was unable to set up a reminder for a future programme. He searched again & found the Freetime guide but this was for programmes already broadcast. I suppose this was catch up TV. He called on another salesman who had a Panasonic TV at home & he spent a few minutes searching for this elusive reminder timer but to no avail. He concluded that it must not be on all TV's & both said it was probably because of the smart features. I asked them if they used the feature at home and both admitted they did not.

    My new TV must have a reminder set up for future programmes and it must also be easy to set up Favourite Channels. Both are extremely easy to do on my LG set & I do so after every retune. I find the Samsung set very long winded for Favourites, easy for setting reminders but the EPG does not make best use of the space available. To many of you, like the JLP salesmen, you probably think such features are unimportant but they stop me from missing favourite programmes & new programmes I find on the EPG.

    I would like a reply from anyone using these features on a smart TV that is currently on sale or at least one under a year old.
     
    Last edited: Jul 10, 2015
  2. Figgerty

    Figgerty
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    I have just spoken to Panasonic and they told me that from this year they no longer have future programme reminder/timer on their TV's. It seems to me an idiotic decision as they provide the EPG buy not a way of reminding you when a programme from is being broadcast. If you have a bad memory or a hectic life, this feature is invaluable.

    Am I the only one using this feature?
     
  3. martinch

    martinch
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    I imagine Panasonic will point at Freetime and say "well, you can watch it on that if you miss it", but it does seem to be a somewhat curious omission (and one I wasn't aware of) - thanks for saying!

    (N.B. I'm not using a smart TV, but am in the process of upgrading to one, so my opinion does not meet your criterion)
     
  4. Figgerty

    Figgerty
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    Martinch

    Thanks for replying. The salesmen also said that I could watch on Freetime & that may be why there is no way of setting a timer. I prefer to watch live if I'm able to and only use catch up for programmes I'm unable to view live. I must now check out Sony and take another look at Samsung.

    Good luck with your purchase.
     
    Last edited: Jul 10, 2015
  5. cuke2u

    cuke2u
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    Don't ever judge a TV by just looking at them in a department store. Go with your own content to try, ask for the remote, set the TV up correctly and try different inputs and sources and SD or HD to see how the set copes with upscaling. It maybe that the TV's you were looking at weren't connected to a aerial, or sat dish, thus no guide. I find adding and editing favourites easy, as is setting up reminders..
    How old is your Samsung as the EPG has probably changed a bit if it is over two years old.
     
    Last edited: Jul 13, 2015
  6. Figgerty

    Figgerty
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    Both my T'Vs are 4-5 years old & I expected things to have changed in that time that was why I went to J Lewis to see the changes. With the programme guide & setting programme reminders I was able to see the feature, if it existed, in John lewis. Currys/PC World can not demonstrate any features as they do not have a licence - how can they sell TV's & not be able to demonstrate all the features. All you can see is a prerecording that they play on every TV in the store. They can't show you the same recording on an HD TV & an ultra HD TV so you can compare the pictures.

    As to Smart TV, I'm befuddled as to what catch-up TV each manuufacturer supplies. Also can I use a smart TV as an ordinary TV from the remote & ignore the smart apps. I have seen reviews where viewers complain about the slowness & stuttering & the difficulty using the on screen keyboard etc. This makes me wonder if smart TV is all it's cracked up to be. I currently watch my catch-up TV on my laptop from iPlayer, itvPlayer, 4oD & 5oD, most programmes on BBC but a couple a week from the other players. I now wish to add NowTV to the list to watch important golf tournaments. It seems to me none of the TV manufactures smart services cover this range of services and I have not yet thought about pause and play TV.

    I'm so glad my 2 TV's are still working as I'm gradually going off the idea of buying a new TV as the decision is getting too difficult. Am I complicating things too much?
     
  7. vickster

    vickster
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    Catch up channels are accessed through apps on a smart TV attached to your broadband tuner, via Ethernet or wirelessly

    The apps take some time to load. It's a TV for watching programmes and films, not a computer for accessing the Internet ultimately

    If you want to watch catch up TV on your TV, and you don't have Virgin or sky for example, then a smart TV is the easiest way to do it

    Samsung supply all 4 terrestrial services through their apps, the other manufacturers are more limited (I think Samsung signed an exclusive deal with ITV for example)
     
  8. Figgerty

    Figgerty
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    It's very useful to know about Samsung, Vickster.
    If I only wish to watch Freeiew TV as it's broadcast and not bother about the smart features, will the TV be the same as non smart TV's. ie. no time delays in switching channels or waiting for any programme to upload.
     
  9. vickster

    vickster
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    I don't know I'm afraid, I don't use freeview as I have sky but I would assume so, you have to access smart features through separate menus to the terrestrial TV channels
     
    Last edited: Jul 14, 2015
  10. Figgerty

    Figgerty
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    I think another visit to John Lewis is called for. They are pretty good at showing the features and this time I will take command of the remote control. They also include a 5 year warranty on all their TV's which is worth about £90. They also match other retailers prices. All they need is a larger choice of TV's in their stores.
     
  11. vickster

    vickster
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    They always seem to have most models that they stock in one size or another

    Oxford street has loads!
     

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