Please help me with my 1st LCD - LA40A550/650/750 - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 20 Old 04-05-2009, 09:10 PM - Thread Starter
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Hi guys, I've been planning to buy an LCD TV for sometime now. Just yesterday I walked into the electronics store like I usually do whenever I go to the mall, checking out new TVs. I have my eyes on Samsung ever since I saw the F8 (couldn't afford it then at $2,300 ), and to my delight I found the prices for the Series 5, 6, 7 have come down somewhat to my purchase levels. Anyway to the cut the story short here are the prices:

LA40A550 - $999
LA40A650 - $1,350
LA40A750 - $1,700

I'm not loaded, so I really want to choose one which justify every dollar spent. So please, LCD experts and owners of these babies, help me with my purchasing decision. If it helps to know my preferences and what I usually do on my TVs, please read on.

My current TV is an SD-CRT Sony 21", not even 480p capable although it has s-video and component (which I use for my PS2 for a satisfyingly improved picture quality). I was looking for a Bravia, since I like my Sony (menus and all), but after seeing them live several times, I wasn't quite impressed with the picture quality. I don't know why - they're starting to show HD contents on the show floor nowadays. Maybe Bravia owners can shed some light into this.

Anyway, I've read enough about LCD and its shortcomings compared to Plasma and HD-CRT, and accept there will be some trade-off. The LCD will be placed in my room, viewed from about 10' in somewhat darker lighting condition (can be brighter, of course). Currently I have zero HD material, but I watch a lot of DVDs so I'm planning to buy an upscaling player (it'd help a lot if you guys can recommend one, too ), and at some point in the near future, an Xbox 360 (it can play at 1080p, right?). I want to use it as a giant monitor too, and perhaps play some HD content from the PC. I also have a Wii, and looking forward to playing it at 480p. There's no HD broadcast around here, so I'll be watching a lot of SD content. I watch football at weekends (still at SD), so maybe it's a factor, too. I don't have a decent home theater, so I'll be using the TV's speakers for audio.

So like, the Samsung guy was nice enough to show me what these Samsung sets can do. They had them placed side by side. While I was quite pleased with the 550, it was the 750 that blew me away. They're all showing the same content/feed, but I couldn't see any lag on the 750. We browse through the menus and I set them at Dynamic and AMP Auto. I regret not giving the same attention to the 650 but I feel it's somewhere between the 550 and 750. We played the 1080p trailers of Ice Age 2, Robots, SF4, LoTR and during the fast-paced sequences, the 550 faltered a bit while the 750 was smooth as silk. If only the 750 is at the price of a 650, I would have no doubt about my decision. But it doesn't swivel. And I have no use for its built-in gallery/game/cooking/fitness widgets. Pity. I found out later that the 550 is not yet at 100MHz (the Samsung guy lied! ). So, I'm leaning toward the 650. But I read here that the 650 has quite some issues. Now I'm in doubt whether the 650, or even the 750, would justify the significant price increase from the 550. So, please help me on my first LCD.

Thank you very much for sharing your insights.
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post #2 of 20 Old 04-06-2009, 12:06 AM
 
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LN40A750 is definitely the best among the 3
http://www.amazon.com/Samsung-LN40A750-40-Inch-1080p-Touch/dp/B0014175QQ/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&s=electronics&qid=1238997835&sr=1-1

If you do not need the A750 features like USB, RSS Info link and etc, save some money and get the LN40A650
http://www.amazon.com/Samsung-LN40A650-40-Inch-1080p-120Hz/dp/B0014175NE/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&s=electronics&qid=1238997642&sr=1-1
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post #3 of 20 Old 04-06-2009, 12:08 AM
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I'd get the 650, 750 is barely better than it and the 650 is MUCH better than the 550 in picture quality and features

If you're a gamer or interested in using an LCD TV as a primary monitor take a look at my thread on Input Lag
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post #4 of 20 Old 04-06-2009, 12:30 AM
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a550 is 60hz (just like every other LCD before it). When you step up into the a650 set the main feature you'll be paying for is the 120hz feature (Auto Motion Plus, or AMP for short). This is what makes the screens image look smoother/less jerky on pans and somewhat 3D. Some people around here call it the "soap opera" look. It's a love/hate feature, most love it some hate it. That's one thing you'll have to decide for yourself. If it was me, I'd definitely spend the extra $350 and step into the a650 set. There's really no reason to be buying a 60hz LCD anymore unless you're getting one hell of a deal on it. It's basically older technology (2+ years at least). The 120hz sets have been out for a little over a year, and now the different manufactures are just about to start releasing their new 240hz sets.

Granted the new 240hz sets might have cleaner motion technology in them (that's what is being improved), but we as consumers haven't seem thse new LCDs yet. I personally think that the difference between last years 120hz sets and the new LCDs is going to be slight at best. Most likely won't be worth the extra cash it'll cost to get a new set (since they'll probably be selling for full MSRP). That's the game these companies are playing with us, full price on the new toys, older sets getting closed out at markdowns. I find it funny that we consider an LCD older after it's been on sale for only 6 months or so.

Then, if you step up into the a750, features you'll be adding include built in WiFi widgets for stocks/ weather/ news/ sports/ (if you purchase their little wifi dongle), and you'll be getting a built in subwoofer for deeper bass. There are a few other features on the a750 but nothing to write home about.

If you're planning on using the LCD with a surround sound system, your best bet will probably be the a650. Take a look at the owners threads here and read up on what people are saying. Here's a chart that might help, good luck with your decision.

http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showthread.php?t=1052592
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post #5 of 20 Old 04-06-2009, 02:54 AM
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at 10ft 40" is way too teeny. you're gonna need glasses soon if you don't get a bigger tv. I know you're coming from 21" but a 46A650 is around $1400 right now at bb. they have a bunch of demo models at sears also you haggle down to 1300 probably. bb has promo right now 46B550 for $1248 with 24mos 0%.
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post #6 of 20 Old 04-06-2009, 06:33 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by zoey67 View Post

at 10ft 40" is way too teeny. you're gonna need glasses soon if you don't get a bigger tv. I know you're coming from 21" but a 46A650 is around $1400 right now at bb. they have a bunch of demo models at sears also you haggle down to 1300 probably. bb has promo right now 46B550 for $1248 with 24mos 0%.

The ln40a650 is listed at 1699 at bb currently as of 4/6 (way too high)
and the 46" is no longer listed at all in the a650 models.

As far as purchasing a new hdtv and not having any hd content to watch..... you may be disapointed in the results. I have 4 hdtv's 3 panny plasmas and a mitsibishi. While they are all watchable in sd, my 11 year old 32" panny tau crt t.v. has a much better sd picture.

Do yourself a favor and get direc t.v., dish, or digital h.d. cable before you drop big money on a new set. Unless you are going to buy a blu ray and invest in a library of movies for it, you may be unhappy with your new purchase using it for only s.d. and standard dvd.

While the new sets are all fantastic with h.d. feeds, many are subpar on s.d. signals..... that is not what they are designed for.
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post #7 of 20 Old 04-06-2009, 08:27 AM
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46B550 right now $1248 manager's special.
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post #8 of 20 Old 04-06-2009, 12:04 PM
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I'd say go with the 650 out of those 3 TV's. I do think the prices you listed here are way to high though. I just did a quick search on Amazon and you can find a 46A650 for the price you posted. Since you seemed to be willing to spend the money anyways, you should get the biggest TV you can, IMHO.

I also agree with the posts about you getting HD satellite or a blu ray player. You will not be pleased with how poor SD looks on a tv of this size. It's just not meant to display SD content. Blu ray players can be had for around $200 and they are well worth the price. They also upconvert all your old DVD's as well.

You might also try one of the Sony W series TV's in YOUR house. They get great reviews online and look far better at home than in the store. Also the 650/750 have highly reflective screens, something that the Sony's do not.
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post #9 of 20 Old 04-06-2009, 03:27 PM
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I love my 46A650 and highly recommend it.
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post #10 of 20 Old 04-06-2009, 03:56 PM
 
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Originally Posted by BoilerJim View Post

I love my 46A650 and highly recommend it.

I also like the 46A650 [IMG]http://www.entertainment-place.info/smile/img/2659/*************************[/IMG] [IMG]http://www.entertainment-place.info/smile/img/2658/*************************[/IMG]
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post #11 of 20 Old 04-06-2009, 07:05 PM
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i love my 750 (i got it at the same price as the 650). i would get the 650 if the price is cheaper, which it probably is. great tv's.
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post #12 of 20 Old 04-07-2009, 02:54 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by i4n37 View Post

The LCD will be placed in my room, viewed from about 10' . Currently I have zero HD material, but I watch a lot of DVDs, an Xbox 360 I want to use it as a giant monitor too, and perhaps play some HD content from the PC. I also have a Wii, and looking forward to playing it at 480p. I watch football at weekends

not understanding why y'all giving advice like getting dish/directv when he's clearly not into that. don't you guys pay attention to what he needs. the guy sd he's a major gamer with Wii & xbox, watches a lot of dvds, and play HD files from pc and only football on weekends which is only 6 mos of of the year. 46B550 is perfect, why get yesterday's leftovers A650 when you can get it fresh from the kitchen...FOR LESS!!!

@ 10ft 46" is still very small. I have 60" at 9-10ft and not satisfied, plan to go up to 65 or 70 very soon.
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post #13 of 20 Old 04-07-2009, 05:13 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by zoey67 View Post

not understanding why y'all giving advice like getting dish/directv when he's clearly not into that. don't you guys pay attention to what he needs. the guy sd he's a major gamer with Wii & xbox, watches a lot of dvds, and play HD files from pc and only football on weekends which is only 6 mos of of the year. 46B550 is perfect, why get yesterday's leftovers A650 when you can get it fresh from the kitchen...FOR LESS!!!

@ 10ft 46" is still very small. I have 60" at 9-10ft and not satisfied, plan to go up to 65 or 70 very soon.

same goes to me, I am at 9ft with 58" - still small!
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post #14 of 20 Old 04-07-2009, 05:47 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by zoey67 View Post

@ 10ft 46" is still very small. I have 60" at 9-10ft and not satisfied, plan to go up to 65 or 70 very soon.

Why am I not surprised?
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post #15 of 20 Old 04-07-2009, 06:09 AM
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Any manager's special on the B650s?
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post #16 of 20 Old 04-07-2009, 07:01 AM
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i4n37, when you say there is no HD broadcast in your area do you mean that you are unable to pull in any local channels with an antenna? Where are you located?

The measure of a man's character is what he would do if he knew he never would be found out.
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post #17 of 20 Old 04-07-2009, 09:55 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ebolamonkey View Post

Any manager's special on the B650s?

actually there is $1648 + 299 for geeks ISF....no joke. they also have one for the B6000 as well.
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post #18 of 20 Old 04-07-2009, 08:29 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by zoey67 View Post

actually there is $1648 + 299 for geeks ISF....no joke. they also have one for the B6000 as well.

Might wait for a month or two seeing how historically the price of LCDs drops about 25% in 2-3months after release.
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post #19 of 20 Old 04-09-2009, 08:10 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by zoey67 View Post

actually there is $1648 + 299 for geeks ISF....no joke. they also have one for the B6000 as well.


The quote for B650 for a 40 or 46 inch? Also what is the deal on the 40/46 B6000?
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post #20 of 20 Old 04-09-2009, 08:26 PM
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get the a650... on last years models the 750/850 are a joke. The only thing you gain by 750 is the additional 2 small speakers that aren't worth a darn anyway with a couple small b.s. features and you lose swivel. It has the same exact tv specs so imo the 750 pricetag is a waste of money sure it's a nice tv but your paying for no better picture....



get the a650
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