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How much are we paying for a name ?????

cutes6

Active Member
I have been on these forums for a while now and they have proved a fantastic help to me in my purchases and set up. I have a dedicated cinema room at my home with some decent kit built up over the years and while I am no expert I work hard to get the best picture I can for the least money and have built up good experience over the years - anyway to the point.

I have recently purchased a flat in Hemel Hempstead due to work requirements while keeping my main family home in the North. This meant finding myself a decent Television of some sort so turned to these forums for help again. I didn't have a lot of money to spend and had resigned myself to buy a CRT set as the minimum size I needed was 27-30" anything bigger was too big for the room. I have Sky and had purchased a Panasonic E55 to record things so my connection requirements were Component and Scart RGB.

Anyway after studying all the knowledge in these forums it seemed that all LCD units were around £1200 upwards for a good set which was more than I wanted to spend, at this size Plasma didn't come into it, so off I went to Curry's to get my first look at what was available. Like most people here I was dissapointed at the quality of the pictures because of the feeds and the set up of each unit. So I was just about to go and look at CRT when I saw a Logik 27" LCD set for £699 on offer. As usual there was no salesman available so I picked up the remote and started playing and to my suprise managed to get what I thought was a pretty good picture. I left to go and do some research and give it some thought.

I then found out that they did a 30" version for £899 in the sales so I went back and they got one out for me and left me playing, it had the connections I needed and I kept wondering what the catch was. I stood back and after playing with other sets tried to compare the screens and kept comming to the same conclusion - it seemed as good as most other sets there but for a lot less money. I watch a lot of football and was concerned about this but the set seems to have a reasonable response time compared to others so after a lot of haggling I managed to get the 30" set with a warranty for 5 years for £985, put it in my car and went home to set it up.

So here I am 1 month on watching football in my flat and I am still asking myself what is the catch with this set. I have set it up very well with DVD Video essentials and I love it. Yes the blacks could be a bit better and like all sets if Sky use poor bandwidth it shows but I am really impressed. So it got me thinking - like most people I like to have a good name that people can relate to but how much is that costing me !!!

I also think also because in real terms it was cheap I might be more forgiving but I will say when friends come round they think the picture is great.

I also think that maybe people don't consider the seating distance enough as I sit around 10ft away where as at 5ft away you notice more of the artifacts which is no different to all of the makes.

So my conclusion is -

Read as much as you can before you start looking, go and have a good play with sets where you can compare there and then and finally get the best protection/Warranty you can, these units are unlikely to get repaired for major failures but replaced.

These forums are superb but they can encourage you quite rightly towards the very best but sometimes the vey best is way beyond most peoples expectations and often a lot more money than may be you need to spend.

This post is not a reflection on these forums in anyway as that's what they are here for, I am just posting my comments to encourage people to go ang have look for yourselves you might be suprised depending on your needs.
 
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AgentPingu

Guest
A good point, well presented.

Spose it's like everything in life, people often get hung up on the brand names as they build faith in the product, plus you get to show off!!

Interestingly I find that the brand names do cross over in places though, for example (nothing to do with LCD's I know), but I once disected my old Aiwa Hi-fi, which I found to have nothing but 'Sony' branded parts on the inside. It's much the same in the world of cars, they often have the same basics, just a glossier finish.

I do find as well that as fantastic as these forums are, which they genuinely are...they completely put to shame any 'Technical' Shop Assisant I've met, they make me completely scared to dive in and make a purchase, I'm on the lookout for so many problems!

Can't fault them for helpfulness though!
 

cutes6

Active Member
Agentpingu,

you touch on a point there about being frightened to make a purchase, I am looking at a Plasma for my main home and I must admit that as we are talking about much more money I am getting myself totally insecure about making the right the decision to the point where I am not going to buy one just yet. The great thing about these forums is that they educate you on what to consider or watch out for and unfortunately there does not seem to be a screen that covers all eventualities. Then when one comes along that tries to, people point out it's weaknesses. Now there is nothing wrong with this as that's where these forums are invaliable but I am sure it puts people off although in most cases it will probably exceed their expectations.

It is difficult to get the right balnce I just want people to go and have a look for themselves as many people always point out in their posts and don't always be blinded by top brand names.
 
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AgentPingu

Guest
cutes6,

Very true yet again, only problem I find it that it seems it takes people a lot of tinkering about with settings to get the picture they desire that truly shows off a set's capabiltities, yet of course, as mentioned many times......you go and have a look at the TV in the flesh, and the set up is so shockingly poor you haven't a clue as to what the picture will be like once you get the screen home! It seems almost a case of having to see which screen does the best job of the bad picture....

I'm sure a worthwhile investment for retailers would be to improve their set up's, surely it would dramatically increase the sales of the LCD's and Plasmas, thus manufacturer's would perhaps produce sets that do have 'all the bells and whistles' to meet the high demand and beat off the competition, although whether all this could derive from retailers sorting out their demo's, I'm unsure!

One other thing worth noting, if manufacturer's were to give us sets with the HDMI's, Scarts, Components, Resolutions, Looks, Sounds etc etc etc that we want, even regardless of cost.....would it not prevent people from buying another set for a lonnnnng time?
 

cutes6

Active Member
Agentpingu,

I have heard people in these shops actually be put off new technology because the picture is soooooo poor and go and have a look at CRT which is a shame.

Also though I have no examples to quote, I believe in America for example they seem to get all the connections they want and in some cases we get the same sets but with some connections removed !!!! I am not sure if giving us all these connections would reduce further sales, what I would say is that I think there are many people on these forums who currently feel ripped off by certain manufacturers descriptions of what their sets are cabable of ie Hi Def ready etc. It must put people off buying this manufacturers products in the future.

On a funny note with all these connections available it must be funny watching the average person trying to get all the gear connected up !!!! I get called to my relatives houses often enough to sort things out. The cable manufacturers must be having a great time of it right now. People knock Scart but for plug and play and quality it serves a purpose, I hope HDMI and DVI deliver this in the near future.
 
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AgentPingu

Guest
I know what you mean! I dread to think how many cables I'll have running about the place once I take the plunge and get an LCD, off the top of my head they'll be DVD Receiver (which in itself has an abundance of cables running to the 5.1 surround sound), a PS2, a laptop, and even though the quality will be appaling, maybe even....dare I say it.....VHS! oh and lets not forget a digital Freeview box, might as well add in a kettle and toaster just to confuse things further!

Funny you say about the people being put of the CRT's, only yesterday was I in Powerhouse and an elderly couple took one look at the LCD's and fear was struck into their heart......'best go with the old style TV dear, far more reliable'

One other immense gripe I have on this subject is wall mounts, it realllllllly winds me up that no other manufacturer other than Philips seem to supply the set with a wall mount. Even if they were supplied with a basic mount just as standard, then if you want a fancy articulated one, or suspended by chains from the ceiling, or perhaps some levatational device (thinking to the future on that one)....you can go buy it as an extra. I don't want to spend anymore than £1000 on the screen, and I seem to have stolen the phrase from the car world....'£15995 on the road' and changed it to '£1000 on the wall'!!!

Perhaps manufacturers could give the option to buy a set with either the wall mount, or the table mount....but not both???? (just a thought)

Sorry, I seem to have completely veered off of the original thread subject!
 

cutes6

Active Member
You make me laugh about the old dear !!! while I was playing around with this Logik set there was a young salesman who must have spent over half an hour trying to explain to an old couple all about 16:9/4:3 screen Tv's and why 16:9 still have black bars and people can look fat, it was so funny as he tried in vain to get rid of them :laugh: :laugh: :laugh: :laugh:

It doesn't matter about the thread it's only you and me anyway.

I have built this home cinema room at home from scratch with a CRT projector etc and the planning that had to go into cabling was unbelievable. The amount of cables behind the equipment racks is embarrasing. I live south through the week and even now my wife calls me to ask how to work something and I have it all programmed into the Pronto :suicide: . My youngest daughter is brilliant tho - years ago I used to have manual region change panasonic player and she could go through all the menus by memory to change from 1 to 2 without the screen on !!!!
 

jimsan

Novice Member
I hardly dare butt in here out of fear of becoming a goosebery!

You guys are having a grand dialogue and I have thoroughly enjoyed reading it...

It's like, 'Days in the Lives of an AV Enthusiast'. Could be published.

You've covered a lot of points that have been raised from time to time on this forum, but the overriding message I have from your posts is something that has crossed my mind in the passed. This shouldn't be this difficult!

I spent weeks pouring over every miniscule detail of every LCD available in the UK. I got help from this forum which had the dual effect of educating me and terrifying at the same time! I've made my purchase, and I'm glad to say I'm delighted....phew!

Amusingly, I find myself standing in Comet or Curries looking at the diabolical pictures on display and groan when I overhear conversations between potential customers and the salesmen. It drives me mad. I can't get out quickly enough...

Back to your origional point, Cutes, what you say is mostly true. Almost any properly set up LCD can turn in a decent performance. It is important to sit a decent distance away as you have noted. However there IS an extra level of performance available from some of the clever digital processing available with some of the 'Big' brands. They are worth exploring and exploiting.

Jimmy
 

cutes6

Active Member
Jimsan, welcome to the chat :thumbsup:

I know what you mean about "phew I made the right decision" and you are right it should not be so difficult.

When you think about it £1200 + for a TV and sometimes just a panel is a lot of money (although very good value considering how long we keep them) but it shouldn't be sooooooooooo difficult.

I look at the set I bought and it still impresses me, I am watching Spanish football right now and the picture through component is great and I am sure that the viewing distance has a lot to do with it, plus a little knowledge of things.

I wonder how people who don't know this forum get on :eek: :eek: :eek: and they have to rely on those wonderfull salespeople to help them - poor people they don't stand a chance - I can see it now

What equipment do you have?

er a Video recorder and sky

Oh good what connections do you have ?

well there is the mains cable and then there is the lead from the wall, oh and there is a big fat one with big ends

er right that is called the scart lead :)

oh and what does that do ????

:laugh: :laugh:

you get the picture and yes I have heard these conversations. It must be difficult for sales people at times.

Can you imagine trying to explain Composite, component, HDMi,DVI, 75ohms cable, anomorphic, scalers, interlaced and progressive, VGA etc. :laugh: :laugh: :laugh: :laugh: :laugh: :laugh:
 

jimsan

Novice Member
My old mam has a widescreen CRT, a very basic one and the connections are absolutely as simple and basic as I could get. Digibox-scart-TV. VHS-scart-TV. She has no idea what is going on with this. Yesterday she accidentally touched a button on her TV remote which changed the input on AV1 to NTSC!

If she couldn't call me to fix it she'd have been onto the shop she bought it from and they'd have sent out an engineer and he'd have said that it was a terrible fault with the TV and it needed this component and that component.....etc. Oh yes, and that'll be £123.45 thank you very much...

It is hellish difficult. Even at its most basic.

If I go into one of these shops and find a salesman who has the knowledge I now have, I'm amazed. It happened once during my search, in a wee shop in Carlisle, and the bloke was brilliant. He was helpful, enthusiastic and genuinely knowledgable. It was great, but he couldn't compete on prices with the online stores and therefore didn't get the sale. Shame. I do some sympathy with the Comet-type salesman, as he is expected to have good knowledge of everything from LCD's to Washing Machines. They must curse when folks like us walk in all genned up with technobabble...

FYI. I have a 32PF9986 hooked up with all the right bits 'n' bobs and am watching 'The Green Mile'.....what an amazing piece of kit (good film too).

Enjoy the Footie,

Jimmy
 
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AgentPingu

Guest
Me again,

On the comedy useless salesmen front, I found I couldn't actually help myself the other day.....there was an old confused couple, infact, I don't know if they even knew where they were......but nevertheless, they were looking at TV's, and had been so painfully misadvised, once the salesmen left them, I had to butt in and tell them how it is......something which I'm not proud of, but I couldn't stand to see them be screwed over.

They did seem appreciative of my help though, however, I feel a Wurther's Original or Boiled Sweet wouldn't have gone amiss! :eek:)

Just a simple question for you guys.......Toshy 30WL46, good buy? That's what I'm thinkin about opting for.....although in store in has an awful lot of ghosting, I've played with the settings, but maybe it's due to the TV being hooked up via an analog cable to a DVD player that is about 5miles away serving just about every TV in Suffolk.

Yet when I ask the assisant to hook up a seperate player just for my demo needs......... 'oh no, I'm afraid I can't do that (as I'm not allowed to think, I'm lucky I'm even allowed on the shopfloor)' .......poor bugger.
 

jimsan

Novice Member
The Tosh you mention isn't particularly brilliant in any respect. Is it cheap Pingu?

Jimmy
 
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AgentPingu

Guest
Jimmy,

It's a shade under £1k.

Now, by not particulary brilliant in any respect........do you mean, good all rounder???

Remember, the glass is half full in this thread. :eek:)
 

jimsan

Novice Member
I mean respectable little telly. No fancy tricks. Could do worse for £1K. Could do better...

But like Cutes, if it is properly connected and set up it'll do fine.

Jimmy
 
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AgentPingu

Guest
Cheers Jimmy, that's exactly the kind of reassurance I need!

So what 30" in that price region could do better.....?

Worth askin :eek:)
 

jimsan

Novice Member
Oh, I knew you'd ask that! This depends on what is available at the time! I'll do you a quick search this evening and see if there are any glaringly good deals to be had.... Bear with me.

Jimmy
 
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AgentPingu

Guest
lol, cheers.

Although I am tempted to bide my time and get a 32" ga4e cos everyone seems to love them on here, plus the fact is, I do have a TV at the mo, so I don't reaaaalllly have to get one right now....I just want one!!!

Btw, my viewing distance is about 2.5m, so I'm gonna need 30"-32" ....yeh?

Thanks again
 

jimsan

Novice Member
2.5m is absolutely the minimum distance from a 32" screen. OK if it's a good 'un though.

Pingu, the GA4E is a very desirable set, but is now in really short supply. It seems that Sharp have kinda shot themselves in the foot by superceding the now possibly defunct 4 series with the 5 series which, unbelievably, is not HDTV compliant when its predecessor was!

The Philips 32PF9986 is a better TV and has the added bonus of the Ambilight which adds a significant extra dimension to your TV viewing experience! The picture this thing is able to produce is sometimes utterly breathtaking. Trouble is its looks are a bit love-it-or-hate-it. I look upon it as the antidote to the hellish bland, silver plastic, CRT clones that we suffered during the dark ages of the late 90's and early 00's. What were the TV designers thinking?...

Lets design a new TV chassis...hmmm...I think it should be silver and completely, bloody featureless!

Sorry, this used to really annoy me....

Anyway Pingu, if you're gonna buy a new telly, you might as well go the whole way and get the best....£1900 though....

Jimmy
 
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AgentPingu

Guest
lol, good point on the silver TV's.

As for the 32PF9986, I think it's proper sexy, and a longggggg way outta my budget!!!

I could buy another car for that money, or probably a small country.
 

jimsan

Novice Member
Go on, you can afford it. Interest free over a couple of years...easy!

Jimmy
 
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AgentPingu

Guest
wow look! we've had 581 view at the moment on this thread!!!!

This is perhaps the greatest thread ever.

Come on Cutes, get back in the action.

Anyone else want to join in, then feel free.

Here's a thought for us all, answers on a large SAE......

Earlier on, I moaned about wall mounts, and how expensive they are, and how it annoys me.....unless u have a Philips (yes, well done Jimmy, good purchase :eek:) ).....
now, I had an idea, of just getting a really chunky, hardcore, heavy duty shelf, nice lookin one, fixing that to the wall with some insanely large fixings......and sitting the TV on that, I honestly don't think it would look that bad if the right wood is used.

Has anyway ever done this? Does everyone think I'm talking rubbish? Is this truly the greatest thread this forum has ever seen?......opinions please :eek:)
 

jimsan

Novice Member
This is weird!

I origionally thought that I'd mount mine on a big old shelf. Not just any big old shelf, but one of those wobbly edged tree trunk type shelves. I was also going to arrange three other smaller wobbly edged shelves below it to carry the AV bits'n'bobs. The cables would've had to be buried in the wall - tricky...Would've looked cool, but the room didn't really have the ideal area on the wall for this. I resorted to the more traditional glass shelf contraption. Looks good enough.

Pingu, the next Philips down the Techno Food Chain is the 9976 which is the wee bruv to the 9986....£1400 sound any better? Nearly all the same features. No Ambilight though...no? No! get the 9986....Go on Go on Go on...

Jimmy
 

cutes6

Active Member
Evening Guy's hope you are well. :hiya: :hiya:

I Have been logged on for a while but had a report for work to do :thumbsdow

I have just had a look at Jimsan's profile and I like it's a good system. I was thinking of the Denon system for the flat it gets good reviews.

Agentpingu, I was just imagining your "shelf idea" :laugh: :laugh: It would take away from the slimness and style of the TV wouldn't it :confused:

What about the unit getting knocked and falling off. I understand how you feel about paying through the nose for it but these screens do look very coooool just hanging from the wall like a picture, but you must hide the wires.

Just been reading the great Plasma test thread and it gets a bit heated sometimes. It does remind me of this thread earlier on and I do wonder how many people have been put off the NEC already.

I wonder how my Logik 30" would get on in a mega test - do you know for the price of the Phillips lcd at £1999 I could get 2 of my Logiks or nearly 3 of the 27" versions :eek: :eek: :eek: :eek: It does make you think !!!!
 

jimsan

Novice Member
Hi-Ya Cutesie!

You're right, the Telly would have to be secured back to the wall, and the shelf need only be 8 inches deep, so the slimness of the LCD's is still fully utilised.

I've been involved in some pretty HOT debates too. Mine was over the pros and cons of LCD's over CRT's. (Check back on any 'discussions' I had with a chap called 'Faust') Good fun though!

Now, don't you go upsettin' me, comparing your trashy, cheap, 30", Currycr*p with my superior, expensive Philips gem!

No, seriously, the extra money for the Philips is fully justified with the astonishing PQ and extra features served up in a beautifully screwed together Televisual Masterpiece!...sorry, I get carried away.....No, it is quite dear, but is far from being the most expensive. There are, however, a goodly supply of descent cheaper sets available that perform perfectly well, but if you need a Panel to display cinematic quality DVD and also be fully ready for Skys HDTV broadcasts, then a bit more cash will need to depart your bank account.

The Denon DHT500. This is the only one to have in this price bracket. I could slever (slevver..slevre..?) on endlessly about this, but I won't on here.....

This is a cool thread. What we need is one or two more amusing tales of life in the retail front line! Here's a good one...

Panasonic shop. 7 weeks ago. Head salesman in a specialised TV shop:

Salesman: 'Yes of course the Viera range is HDTV ready'.
Me: 'No they're not'
Salesman: 'Well nobody will want to watch it if it ever comes out anyway!'

My oh my.

Jimmy
 

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