buying a Hit Sunday, Help quick Mfusick, Bachelor, Ken Stokes & other Senior members - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 19 Old 11-02-2002, 08:50 PM - Thread Starter
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I have settled (after exhaustive reading of this great great forum) on the Hitachi. My choices are: The Hitachi 57sws20b, 57xwx20b or the 65swx20b. A few questions are:

1. When do the new 2003 models come out?

2. Will there be big improvements?

3. What is it main differences between the Hitachi 57swx20b and the 57xwx20b? Is it worth the difference?

4. What would be a good price for the Hitachis: Tonight in CC (Florida) they had
57sws20b for $3299 and a 65swx20b for $3499 and a 57xwx20b for $4499.

5. My kids watch Cartoon Network. Although I live in Stuart Florida and Adelphia Cable had Digital cable, I have to assume that Cartoon Network is 4.3 and I will have to stretch it. I don't care if Bugs Bunny looks wierd but I would care if Imus In The Morning looked wierd (than he looks now ha ha). I would also watch Blockbuster vidios so what would be a good dvd player to get?

6. Would you recogmend a Service plan and what is the best bang for the buck?

7. I have a two year old Avia tuning CD but I will assume there is / are better ones out there now...if so, what should I get?

8. My viewing areae is (from the front of the TV, to the chairs (my eyes) anywhere from 13 to 16 feet. What size (57 or 65 inch) would be best?

9. I have a good Yamaha, and complete set of Klipch speakers, so can I drive them from the tv, or should I drive them from the Digital box as provide by Adelphia Cable company.

Please, if you could provide specific answers I would certainly appreciate it because once I make up my mind, I am totally focused and will do the deed probably tomorrow (Sunday). Thanks ever so much for your guidence.

Robert P Wagner
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post #2 of 19 Old 11-02-2002, 09:31 PM
 
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Well, I am not a senior member but I can put in my nickel. I had a 57TWX delivered Friday afternoon. The 57TWX is nothing more than a dressed up SWX 57. She has a deep black anti-reflective screen and faux marble side covers. The TWX are specialty models and are not in some of the big box stores. The XWX models incorporate an internal HD tuner. Thats the big difference as well as a 1394 firewire in addition to the DVI interface. They may also have better CRT. I am not sure. Others will certainly address that for you. I bought my set after reading many positive reviews and comments from AVS, HTF, The Spot, as well as some recent reviews in several HT rags. My experience with this series of set so far indicates that the reviews were all right. The sets are not perfect but then none are. The
Hitachi sets will provide a good pleasing standard stretched image as long as the channel you are watching is a good source to begin with. An HI-def
STB box will likely do a better job of stretching than the Hitachi itself. I use
a Hughes E-86 and it is respectable. There has been much touting of the new Sony and Zenith satellite STB .....I wish I could audition one just to see if it would be worth the purchase price. I no nothing about any future
models of Hitachi ....Mfusick seems to be the primary Hitachi geek on this forum...he may have something to say...he is seldom at a loss for words.
As to pricing......The model I have TWX which has the upgrade screen and is more cosmetically pleasing can be had in my area of the US for 3K or under depending upon who you are buying from and how much they are willing to give. I'd say 3299.00 for the 57SWX is probably the "sticker" price. I'd try for a minimum of at least ten percent off that. Like I said the
TWX is the same TV with a better screen and cosmetics that adds ...oh say
250.00 or so to an MSRP. Consumer reports usually does not recommend
purchasing service plans but in the case of expensive RPTV they do say it may be a good idea. Think of it as an insurance policy for three years. Its a big money maker for the retailer as most of these sets are going to go out in the field and be in use by JSP honest folk who wouldnt notice a red push ..a green push or a poor black level. Barring a catastrophic electronics glitch they will never ever call for any service. I would not tell you to expect 4:3 stretched material to look as good as it does on a standard small tube TV...it aint gonna happen. But it aint bad either. The drama to these new sets is HDTV and DVD. having this new 57 widescreen
is making me want to watch my entire DVD collection just to experience that cinema feeling. We watch from about 12-13 feet. If I actually move back another five feet the imperfections in standard programming are lessened.... I have not yet tweaked to AVIA so I may still get a few more percentage points of image quality after that is done. I suppose If I shell out more bucks for a full ISF calibration that would give up a few more ponts towards that magic 100% effort. I'm happy with my TV and look forward to playing with it more in the weeks to come. Good Luck and happy shopping.
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post #3 of 19 Old 11-03-2002, 08:45 AM
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Bob I gave you some advice via PM and I will try to answer some of your questions you posted above.

1 & 2) Considering the SWX and XWX series didnt seem to start showing up in stores until the last half of the year it will be atleast that time next year before the new models come out.

3) As Burke said the main difference is the screen, cabinent, internal tuner and firewire aka 1394 ports.

4) Those are the Internet sticker prices from CC. As I have told you before you should be able to get the 57SWX for just under a 1000 less than you listed. When I was last in the wpb CC they had the 65SWX20B listed for 2999 and the 57XWX for 3999 I believe.

5) My family watches alot of 4x3 material and after just having this unit a week we have pretty much gotten totally used to the 4x3 expand stretch mode. At first it will really bother you but you adjust pretty quickly.

6) If purchasing from CC probably as they have a good service plan and the peace of mind is nice. Otherwise its really a craps shoot like Burke also said.

7) If that is the avia Guide to Home Theater it is still very relivant.

8) Our viewing area is only as short as 7ft to as far as about 11ft and we have the 57. Farther back and I would recommend the 65 for impact but it will also make imperfections in the signal that much more apparent.

9) I have mine fed from the Adelphia cable box via both the coaxial and analog outputs as the lower 100 channels are still broadcast entirely in analog. It wouldnt hurt to run an output from the TV to your reciever incase you want to hook up a gaming system directly to the TV and still get surround sound.

Hope that helps. Hell you keep this up and I will have to invite you over to come look at my 57SWX20B in action.
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post #4 of 19 Old 11-03-2002, 03:52 PM
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Bob, sorry it took so long to respond. I just got back from the Detroit/Dallas football game. We (Det) won but what a god awful game. I pay over $200 a seat to watch this garbage:mad:

I purchased the 65xwx because I want to record with a D-VHS deck. In my case the picture quality is better but that is probably a set specific issue.

I purchased a 4yr warranty mostly because if it is repaired three times Circuit City will give a refund or new TV. It was probably a waste of money but I like the option.

I didn't think we were supposed to discuss prices but I will say that my 65xwx20b was less than 4k.

If I just broke some kind of rule I apologize!

I honestly don't think you can wrong with any of these sets.

Ken
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post #5 of 19 Old 11-03-2002, 05:26 PM
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Quote:
Originally posted by bob733
1. When do the new 2003 models come out?

2. Will there be big improvements?

The current models, (20B models) came out late summer and early fall, only few months old.

The 20B series Hitachi's will be current models untill next summer atleast.
They are 2003 models technically.

I am sure they will get better. The 20B is much better than my 10B is.

Quote:
3. What is it main differences between the Hitachi 57swx20b and the 57xwx20b? Is it worth the difference?
Short answer: Better blacker screen with less glare and HDTV tuner and 1394 in/out for HDTV recording and networking. Better cabinet and better overall attention to detail and out of the box quality.

Quote:
4. What would be a good price for the Hitachis: Tonight in CC (Florida) they had
Pricing is regional and based on competition and location. Price info is not relavant from on part of the country to another. Don't expect to get a deal like some post, but do the best you can. 10% off price match should be nice, with perhaps 12months no interest, the current promo like a free DVD player or Gift card and free set up and delivery sounds like a great deal to me- Given you situation. Try to combine all the offers and add a 10% price reduction if possible. Give them a reason to budge on the price.. don't demand it. Make somthing up like a better deal somewhere else... or hunt the net and bring in a sheet with an internet price and see if the match it. there are lots of ways to get great deals... But I can really help you more than what I just said. PM me with some speciic questions...



Quote:
5. My kids watch Cartoon Network. Although I live in Stuart Florida and Adelphia Cable had Digital cable, I have to assume that Cartoon Network is 4.3 and I will have to stretch it. I don't care if Bugs Bunny looks wierd but I would care if Imus In The Morning looked wierd (than he looks now ha ha). I would also watch Blockbuster vidios so what would be a good dvd player to get?
There are many stretch and chop modes and the option to watch it native 4:3 too. You should be happy. The "horrible" stretch modes of the Hitachi are very overated- Try them yourself... They are not objectionable to me. Only people who complain about them are people who own a toshiba, I never read real Hitachi owners complain like it's the end of the world.

Sony makes nice DVD players. JVC has a nice one too. I am begining not to like panasonic myself...

Quote:
6. Would you recogmend a Service plan and what is the best bang for the buck?
Short answer: Yes.

Quote:
7. I have a two year old Avia tuning CD but I will assume there is / are better ones out there now...if so, what should I get?
It should work great. It's new still.
Quote:
8. My viewing areae is (from the front of the TV, to the chairs (my eyes) anywhere from 13 to 16 feet. What size (57 or 65 inch) would be best?
Take the distance you sit away and multiply it by a factor of 6.

This give you a "reccomended" viewing distance.

Thus.. a person who sits six feet away- 6X6=36" 36" set is recommended.

If you sit 8 feet away- 8X6= 48"

If you sit 10 feet away 10x6=60" and so on...


Now, these are only ideals. With the huge improvment in RPTV picture quality it is possible if running good signals to buy a little larger and still make it work out. It is also ok to purchase a little smaller if you think it looks better or better matches the room it is going in.

I sit about 7 feet from my 53" and about 10 feet from my 61".

The 61" Hitachi is in a room that is 25X23 feet, with cathedral style ceilings and lots of window and hardwood floors. It's a big room.

I bought the 61" cause it was the largest Hitachi made at the time. This year they have 65" available. I would have bought that if I could.

I honestly move the couch or chair closer to the screen and the tv when I watch a DVD and then move it back when I am done.

This is a pain in the ass for me. I would reccomend buying as large a tv as your room will take. People usually know if they bought to big in the first hour they watch it after delivery. With 30 day return policies and exhanges- No biggie..

But, most people find out they bought to small down the road when it's too late.

Anyone who owns an RTPV thats over 1 month old usually thinks it's just right, or too small. Rarley do I ever see or talk to anyone that has an RPTV thats "too big"

Quote:
9. I have a good Yamaha, and complete set of Klipch speakers, so can I drive them from the tv, or should I drive them from the Digital box as provide by Adelphia Cable company.
Digital to the Reciever is best. The XWX has Dolby Digital and optical out. Most people overlook this. Nice for surroundsound...

Hope I helped and it's not too late...


-MIKE

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"Too much is almost enough. Anything in life worth doing is worth overdoing. Moderation is for cowards."
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post #6 of 19 Old 11-04-2002, 03:55 AM
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I'm a little confused about the firewire capability of the XWX with respect to the JVC DVHS. If I would like to be able to record OTA in high definition and also play DVHS tapes, will I need the XWX or is it possible to purchase the SWX and add a tuner (Samsung, Sony, etc.) and tape deck later and still have both capabilities? Thanks.
Vondell
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post #7 of 19 Old 11-04-2002, 05:41 AM
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Vondell,
If you get an over the air tuner your plan will work. Unfortunately if you use DirecTV there are no tuners with Firewire. I have the Sony HD200 but will have to use the Firewire from the Hitachi for the recorder. Silly when you think about it.

Ken
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post #8 of 19 Old 11-04-2002, 06:16 AM
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I'll add my thoughts: I'm afraid if you get the swx series it will be awhile before you buy a HDTV decoder box. Get HDTV! Easiest would be with the xwx series, (internal) but you could find a STB for $500 and purchase the swx model. Yes, I would get a 65 incher. Start big.
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post #9 of 19 Old 11-04-2002, 07:01 AM
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Quote:
Originally posted by Ken Stokes
Vondell,
If you get an over the air tuner your plan will work. Unfortunately if you use DirecTV there are no tuners with Firewire. I have the Sony HD200 but will have to use the Firewire from the Hitachi for the recorder. Silly when you think about it.

Ken
Samsung has a 1394 and DVI out on one model... comming out this month:D

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post #10 of 19 Old 11-04-2002, 11:04 AM
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The Samsung 165 does have firewire but not DirecTV, the 160 has DirecTV but no firewire. There are no DirecTV tuners that have a firewire connection. The only way I know to get both is to buy both.

Ken
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post #11 of 19 Old 11-05-2002, 02:30 AM
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At this point in time, I'm mainly interested in OTA signals. The plan is to buy an HDTV with the ability to access HD signals OTA. The next step would be to possibly add a JVC DVHS deck later as they continue to come down in price and more DVHS tapes are added (still undecided on this issue). I would then add satellite probably next summer as HD content increases and some of the satellite/receiver issues improve. From responses to date, it appears that the XWX might be the way to go. I appreciate all the input.
Vondell
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post #12 of 19 Old 11-05-2002, 06:54 AM
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I'm not a senior member, but I just purchased a 57SWX20B from CC in Minnesota. Their asking price was $2999. I asked the salesman how much they could knock that down, and he offered to lower it $100. I told him if he made it $200, I'd buy it on the spot. He had to take the obligatory "talk to the manager" trip to the back room, but came back and said they'd accept that offer. Ended-up getting it for $2799 as well as a $60 store credit for a promotion they were running. CC will definitely deal on price. I almost wished I would have asked for more, but I'm happy to get that price from a local, reputable dealer.

BTW, I've had the set in house for 2 days now. Regular cable TV doesn't look very good, but I knew that going in. DVDs absolutely shine, and HDTV can't get here soon enough!

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post #13 of 19 Old 11-06-2002, 04:14 PM - Thread Starter
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Just bought a Hitachi 65swx20b from Jensen Beach, Fl Sears for the following. 3500 regular price but he took off 945, so bottom line I got the 65swx20b for 2500. Service plan for 3 years was 280. Home deliever was 45 and of course our wonderful tax. Whole thing was just over 3000 bucks. I really want to thank all of you for the help. I will be getting the system Thursday and will post updates. The Sears guy (in Jenson Beach, Fl) is named Eric Wesley and he is a young (19 years old) clean cut honest guy that is not a high pressure salesman and really seemed to work at getting me the best price for the money (he knoced off 10 percent Price match minus `10 percent, then another 5 percent). How many sharpy sales guys would do that for you. Bottom line.....Hitachi 65swx20b for 2500.00 bucks. Thanks to all again.

Robert P Wagner
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post #14 of 19 Old 11-06-2002, 04:49 PM
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Damn and I thought my deal was sweet. Good job man. Hope you enjoy the set.
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post #15 of 19 Old 11-06-2002, 06:31 PM
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I purchased a 57SWX20B from Nebraska Furniture Mart here in Omaha for $2224, 5 year warrantee for $399, delivery for $35. $2660 for the whole works! And this was their "sale" price with no haggling (I tried to get additional discounts, but no luck). When the salesman quoted this to me, I went home for a sanity check, and holy cow!, it was a great deal! Now, if only I could squeeze a SIR-T165 out of them for say $340, I'd be a happy guy!:D

The only downside is that they were sold out and I had to wait for 3 weeks.. but that was 2 weeks ago, so next week is the magic delivery date. I can't wait...

Jeff
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post #16 of 19 Old 11-06-2002, 06:45 PM
 
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Actually, if you bought a warranty you are really off setting the discount that the outift gave you by that many dollars. From their standpoint that is how it works. The warranty is pure easy money and that is why it is pushed so hard in so many places. Would they have given you that price without buying a warranty? if so its a hell of a deal. Other wise its still good but in fact your total price paid offset any margin given on the set.
Ats the facts folks.
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post #17 of 19 Old 11-06-2002, 06:48 PM - Thread Starter
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He discounted it 950 bucks befor the warentee (wish I could spell that word)... I never buy the warenttees but this time, I did (if anything, for piece of mind (forgot to tell you, it covers burn in)....

Robert P Wagner
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post #18 of 19 Old 11-06-2002, 07:05 PM
 
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So, if you were so predisposed you could play endless hours of video games with the contrast and brightness turned up high? and if the set suffers from severe burn in in six months because your kid were to leave it on with a static X-box screen shot burned forever in....they will fix it? Are you sure they were not BSing you?
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post #19 of 19 Old 11-07-2002, 07:16 AM
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(forgot to tell you, it covers burn in)....

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No it does not. You were lied too.

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