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Newbie needs recommendation

Discussion in 'TVs' started by biltonl, Dec 31, 2001.

  1. biltonl

    biltonl
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    Hi, I'm new to all this technical TV stuff and don't know my DTS from my progressive scan.

    I want a new TV for about £400, I am thinking of buying a DVD player (nothing too special) and have a TiVo and a Playstation.

    Any recommendations? and what basics should I look for?

    Cheers,

    Lara B
     
  2. LV426

    LV426
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    Your TV should be a widescreen one. I wouldn't invest in special or clever sound processing in the TV. If you don't already have a separate amplifier, I'd work on the basis of getting one, later if necessary. So, your emphasis should be on picture quality. You should be able to pick up a fairly respectable basic 28" widescreen TV for your budget. Your TV should be capable of displaying an NTSC picture via its AV (eg Scart) input. (Most can, but make sure before you buy). It should have basic stereo sound.

    Your DVD player should be multiregion. This will enable you to watch imported DVDs from the USA and Australia. (USA because they have a much bigger catalogue than us, discs tend to be better specified, and are usually released earlier; Australia because they are MUCH cheaper than here; both of these places don't suffer from censorship to the same extent as we do). To watch USA discs, your TV needs to be NTSC capable (see above). If you want a budget DVD player which can do this, Tesco are currently selling a Dansai 852 for £99.49 which is easily modified to play all regions. This is a bargain basement product, so don't expect great things, but it is more than adequate for a beginner.

    Finally, by all means do your window-shopping anywhere you like, but don't expect to get good value or quality advice from Currys Dixons Comet Powerhouse et al. Neither do I recommend web traders; they are usually good on price but generally poor on after-sales service. A good local store will perhaps not be the cheapest, but will be the "safest" place to buy from. And don't be afraid to haggle - expect to pay less than at Currys Dixons Comet Powerhouse et al or go elsewhere.

    If you have a Miller Brothers nearby, try them.

    For the future, having got your basic TV and entry-level DVD player, the next thing to save up for is a half-decent home theatre sound system. This can give you often better-than-cinema quality surround sound from 5 loudspeakers. The terms Dolby Digital 5.1 and DTS refer to surround sound formats. You may also see reference to ProLogic (aka DPL) and DPL2 as surround formats. Without going into a lot of technical detail, these formats are less effective than Dolby Digital and DTS. As I said before, I wouldn't look for a TV with any of these things built in. At your price range it may be unavailable. Even if it is, it will be at the expense of picture. Go for basic sound and good picture in the TV, and get a separate sound system later.
     
  3. biltonl

    biltonl
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    Many Thanks for you lengthy and informative reply.

    I was thinking of getting my DVD from Richer Sounds as there is a local store near me and was thinking of the Sony DVPNS 300 at D£169 (internet price).

    Is there any particular TV manufacturer that is best for picture quality, I've picked up from some of these posts that Sony are good for this??I was going to pick a TV make and model and just find the best price.

    Lara
     
  4. mjn

    mjn
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    a Widescreen tv, is not a must!! It depends on what material you are going to watch!!

    4:3 can be had for silly money now....and will give you a bigger 4:3 image for your money!!

    If you have SKY digital, then you may be better off with wide screen tele, but firstly determine what picture format (4:3, 16:9), 2.35:1, etc).
     
  5. LV426

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    In making the widescreen recommendation, I based this on biltonl 's statement that there was going to be a DVD player in the setup. As most DVDs are widescreen, then a widescreen TV is the better choice for DVD.

    As for the best makes, then the usual suspects - Sony, Panasonic, JVC - are most often recommended. But these manufacturers can be as guilty of poor geometry and other issues as some less well-known brands. Sony's IMHO offer the best subjective picture quality, but I have seen reports on forums of geometry problems with these (and others).

    There isn't an easy answer. You need to window-shop to find out what suits you. Your limited budget will limit your choices. If you can, arrange to buy from a retailer who will let you inspect (and reject, if necessary) the product before you take it away, or one who you know, from recommendation, is helpful after the sale, in the event of problems.

    As for the DVD player, I'm sure the Richer/Sony will be fine. However, there is one limitation on many Sony's (not sure about the specific one you are thinking of) - they won't play home made CDs (ie CD-R's).

    My own brief experience, plus the comments of others on another forum, would tend to suggest that the Tesco/Dansai is a good first buy. It plays all known types of 5inch discs - including MP3s.
     
  6. Ian J

    Ian J
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    The best picture quality is from RGB and most TV's only have one RGB enabled scart socket.

    To save a later posting asking how you connect it all up it might be advisable to try to find a DVD player with two scart sockets so that you can daisychain the Tivo and both will then use RGB.

    Ian
     
  7. mwhorley

    mwhorley
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    I have researched long and hard for sub £450 widescreen TV's inc stand.

    I opted for the Philips PW6006C which retails at £499 if you buy from comet.

    I got if from www.greatlelectrics.com for £359 + £10 deleivery which I thought was excellent value. People on this forum rave about Sony / Panasonic but for this price the Philips is incredible value for money. If you want to waste another £200 buy a Sony, otherwise use the £200 for your DVD player and get a Philips 28" widescreen - you won't regret it !!

    ps The Website is not brilliant but the £10 next day delivery and low prices are !
     

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