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Thread: Considering a HDTV

  1. #1

    Default Considering a HDTV

    Having ended up with a free PS3 yesterday (long story), and with the S-video socket on my old TV misbehaving, I'm considering taking the plunge and picking up a HDTV. Presently I have my eye on this one. Good? Or is my n00bishness when it comes to all this flashy new TV stuff leading me astray?

    Stuff to be considered:
    1. £500 is the absolute upper limit. Not a penny more. Less would be nice, but not if it's going to cost me in terms of functionality. There's a cheaper version of this TV; it's missing 1 HDMI socket and has a lower contrast ratio (1600 versus 5000). I'm not sure how much difference the contrast makes; I can see myself needing 2 HDMI sockets and switchers for them cost ~£35.

    2. I don't want some massive TV. I don't have space. In terms of practicality 32" is the largest possible. Nor do I want too small; I have a 16" inch at present and I strain to read text comfortably from where I sit to play. Bad eyesight; my contact lenses don't always compensate fully.

    3. LCD is preferred.

    4. I want to connect to it with the minimum of fuss and snazzy picture quality: 1 gamecube, 1 original xbox, 1 wii, one PS3 (intended to act as my DVD player also, meaning I can retire my old one). I may get an xbox360 at some point in the future, assuming they release a model with decent build quality. I'm thinking I will be able to manage that on the linked TV as follows: PS3 and 360 = HDMI, Wii = component, gamecube = RGB scart, xbox = s-video. That's everything able to be plugged in at once, no cable swapping.

    I don't know if the gamecube set up will work; my cube is an imported American model and scart always seems to be a European thing. Any confirmation on this would be appreciated.

    The xbox can't do HD output. It's a PAL model and they crippled the heck out of them. I'm not interested in soft modding the console to restore the functionality in order to spend quite a bit of time and money trying to import cables. It's not worth it; I've got 8 games left and then I've completed my xbox collection.

    5. I don't watch TV. This will be for gaming and DVDs.

    6. I want this thing to last and be good for years. 5 of them at the very bare minimum.
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  2. #2
    Στωικισμός Member Bijo's Avatar
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    Default Re: Considering a HDTV

    Quote Originally Posted by frogbeastegg
    Having ended up with a free PS3 yesterday (long story), and with the S-video socket on my old TV misbehaving, I'm considering taking the plunge and picking up a HDTV. Presently I have my eye on this one. Good? Or is my n00bishness when it comes to all this flashy new TV stuff leading me astray?

    Stuff to be considered:
    1. £500 is the absolute upper limit. Not a penny more. Less would be nice, but not if it's going to cost me in terms of functionality. There's a cheaper version of this TV; it's missing 1 HDMI socket and has a lower contrast ratio (1600 versus 5000). I'm not sure how much difference the contrast makes; I can see myself needing 2 HDMI sockets and switchers for them cost ~£35.

    2. I don't want some massive TV. I don't have space. In terms of practicality 32" is the largest possible. Nor do I want too small; I have a 16" inch at present and I strain to read text comfortably from where I sit to play. Bad eyesight; my contact lenses don't always compensate fully.

    3. LCD is preferred.
    These parts appear as if they're covered by you already.

    4. I want to connect to it with the minimum of fuss and snazzy picture quality: 1 gamecube, 1 original xbox, 1 wii, one PS3 (intended to act as my DVD player also, meaning I can retire my old one). I may get an xbox360 at some point in the future, assuming they release a model with decent build quality. I'm thinking I will be able to manage that on the linked TV as follows: PS3 and 360 = HDMI, Wii = component, gamecube = RGB scart, xbox = s-video. That's everything able to be plugged in at once, no cable swapping.
    This has the appearance of being covered as well. I'm just thinking of that Wii : if I recall correctly composite connection is only video. I don't have this console, however

    I don't know if the gamecube set up will work; my cube is an imported American model and scart always seems to be a European thing. Any confirmation on this would be appreciated.
    Hmmm. At this late hour I might overlook something, but you have been using your Gamecube successfully before, right? If true, how did you connect your Cube on your old TV (which is presumably "European")?

    6. I want this thing to last and be good for years. 5 of them at the very bare minimum.
    Well, most equipment nowadays holds good to standards. I am not certain if the apparatus you have in mind is truly superior -- I think it's not -- but it shouldn't be such a bad product either. All I know regarding LG is that they are not that high on the list compared to other companies regarding video and audio tools, and phones, etc.


    Of course, my simple efficient advice would be to simply approach a salesman -- one whom you think trustworthy who has no dirty oppressed smug look -- and ask him. Or contact someone from LG -- there may be some customer service or something similar to acquire information.
    Emotion, passions, and desires are, thus peace is not.
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  3. #3
    Moderator Moderator Gregoshi's Avatar
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    Default Re: Considering a HDTV

    froggy, the November 2006 issue of Consumer Reports lists the LG 32LC2D in its LCD TV ratings.

    In the 32 inch LCD category, the LG ranks 10th out of 15 sets rated with an overall score of 53. The top 32 inch set had an overall score of 65, the lowest had a 43. In CR's rating system 40-60 points is considered "good", 60-80 "very good". The top 4 sets (barely) received a "very good" score. The LG received "good" ratings for HD, DVD and standard TV picture quality categories. It received "very good" ratings for sound quality and its remote control and a "good" rating for it menu system. Unfortunately, they didn't include brand reliability ratings.

    It seems that the LG you are looking at is a solid, middle of the road LCD TV. There is a Toshiba 32HL66 which in CR shows having the same US price as the LG ($1200 US back in November) and rates "excellent" HD picture quality and "very good" DVD picture quality. Its score is 62 (very good) and is labeled a "quick pick" for good performance, features and price. You may want to see if you can find this Toshiba set.

    The best thing to do then is to find a store that carries the model(s) you are interested in and take a look at the picture quality yourself. The only catch there is you have to find a place that keeps all the TVs with high quality pictures. Some stores here in the US do terrible with that. I've seen in-store TVs with such a lousy picture (poor connection or settings out of whack) that one wonders why anyone would even consider buying that model. I've also seen it where all the plasma sets have a standard TV broadcast (fuzzy) and the LCDs have a DVD feed (crisp) - hmmm, I guess they were pushing LCD TVs that day.

    Anyway, good luck. I hope the above helps you a little. As long as you are happy with the picture quality, that is the only rating that matters.
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  4. #4

    Default Re: Considering a HDTV

    Thanks.

    Quote Originally Posted by Bijo
    I'm just thinking of that Wii : if I recall correctly composite connection is only video. I don't have this console, however
    Component's the one with five plugs; 3 video and 2 audio. That's the best type of connection available for the Wii, and the one I'd hope to use.

    Composite is the one which comes in the box. Three plugs; 2 audio, 1 video. It's the second worst type available. This is what I use now.

    While double-checking this I have discovered that some people with some TVs find some virtual console Wii games don't display an image via component. They need to revert to the bog standard cable which comes in the box. Bizarrely this happens more often on high end uber TVs than the cheaper ones.

    Hmmm. At this late hour I might overlook something, but you have been using your Gamecube successfully before, right? If true, how did you connect your Cube on your old TV (which is presumably "European")?
    I use the composite cable which came in the box. The red/white/yellow ports are standard to all TVs, European or American. Most European TVs made in the last decade will accept an NSTC signal as well as a PAL one, so there's no problem with the console outputting an NSTC signal. Scart's something which I don't see mentioned much by American gamers, so I'm unsure if it's used much there. If not then the NSTC cube might not have support for it.

    My cube's an old one, meaning it does have component and progressive scan support. Half of my games can use that mode. Alas, my TV couldn't. Now I'm getting one which can the cube component cable is next to impossible to find; the capacity for component output was ripped out of later editions of the NSTC cube, and - like the original xbox - it never featured in the PAL cube or games. Never understood why companies were so keen to remove functionality.

    All I know regarding LG is that they are not that high on the list compared to other companies regarding video and audio tools, and phones, etc.
    Really? Much of my knowledge of them comes from my LCD monitor. It was quite high end at the time I purchased it but cheaper than the other brands. It still stands up as a very good piece of equipment today, several years later.

    The rest of my knowledge comes from their old washing machine adverts

    Quote Originally Posted by Bijo and Gregoshi
    Go look in a shop!
    I was saving that for last. It's a sad fact that salesmen will often assume that females are clueless and should either be patronised or exploited. The last time I stuck my poor little head in one of those places they tried to sell me a standard TV while insisting it was actually wide screen. Yes, and here was silly old me thinking that one of the defining features of a wide screen TV was that they have a wide screen. Needless to say, I walked out.

    Quote Originally Posted by Gregoshi
    In the 32 inch LCD category, the LG ranks 10th out of 15 sets rated with an overall score of 53.
    The other reviews I'd seen were all very positive. They were written by people who'd brought one for their own use, not professionals. That will make some difference. Let's face it, after a lifetime of gaming in standard definition anything in HD is going to look good to me. Whereas if I spend half a year intensively submerging myself in HD that won't be the case.

    Time head to the shops. I'll take one of my poisoned hairpins with me so I can prod unhelpful sales assistants if need be
    Frogbeastegg's Guide to Total War: Shogun II. Please note that the guide is not up-to-date for the latest patch.


  5. #5
    Moderator Moderator Gregoshi's Avatar
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    Default Re: Considering a HDTV

    froggy, the "10th out of 15" was just for a sense of pecking order, but from my interpretation, there wasn't that huge of a difference in many of the 32 inch LCDs rated. Except for the very top and bottom, there wasn't a huge difference from model to model. The point I wasn't clearly making was that the LG seemed to be a respectable middle of the road model - not outstanding but not a lemon either.

    I spent over a hundred hours sweating over reviews & forums looking for a decent, low budget home theater system in the spring. I started out looking at LCD & plasma TVs, but put that on hold to look at the audio piece. I agonized over the best speakers, sub-woofer, receiver 'til I couldn't stand it. "These are too this" and "those are too that" I read from AV forum go-ers as reviews were hard to come by. I finally just made a decision on a relatively cheap pair of speakers that many thought well of. I couldn't be happier. All that frustration for nothing. Sure, it might have made a difference if my hearing was sensitive to such things, but unless the audio "flaws" are pointed out to me, I usually don't notice.

    I've wondered if the same held true for LCD/plasma TVs. Would I really notice the difference between a "good" picture quality and "very good" if the difference wasn't pointed out? When I was looking at LCDs, I can't say I noticed much difference at all in picture quality, so do the ratings really matter that much?

    I fuss about this stuff way too much.
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  6. #6

    Default Re: Considering a HDTV

    It looked more than good enough for me. I ordered one from Novatech (cheaper!) and it's now all set up. Beautiful. What a difference it has made! My old best score in super stardust HD was 49,000. I got 250,000 on my first go on the new TV. I can see what I'm doing properly!

    The NSTC gamecube does work with the RGB scart cable.
    Frogbeastegg's Guide to Total War: Shogun II. Please note that the guide is not up-to-date for the latest patch.


  7. #7
    Στωικισμός Member Bijo's Avatar
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    Default Re: Considering a HDTV

    Good, it works. From your first post you appeared more than adequate to solve your problem. But don't you mean NTSC instead of NSTC? ;)
    Emotion, passions, and desires are, thus peace is not.
    Emotion: you have it or it has you.

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    Pay heed to my story named The Thief in the Mead Hall.
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  8. #8

    Default Re: Considering a HDTV

    Quite probably; I often get that abbreviation wrong.
    Frogbeastegg's Guide to Total War: Shogun II. Please note that the guide is not up-to-date for the latest patch.


  9. #9
    Moderator Moderator Gregoshi's Avatar
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    Default Re: Considering a HDTV

    A happy frog makes for a happy home. I'm glad it worked out for you froggy. I guess your new high score really puts the "high" in "high definition".
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  10. #10
    Master of Few Words Senior Member KukriKhan's Avatar
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    Default Re: Considering a HDTV

    I know I'm late to the party (I should check in here more often), but I have that exact LG HDTV since November. It gives great visual, and has more plug-in sockets than I know what to do with.

    Mrs. Kukri used that same issue of Consumer Reports that Gregoshi referred to, to research the buy.

    I'm sure you'll be happy with your purchase, Ms Frog. Sorry I couldn't have given you more encouragement earlier.
    Be well. Do good. Keep in touch.

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