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Which 36 inch flat TV?  

post #1 of 14
Thread Starter 
I'm looking to buy a good 36 inch flat screen TV. I've narrowed it down to the following based on some good reviews. Can anyone here help me finalize my decision?

JVC AV-36F802

Toshiba 36AF61

I also like the Sony 36 inch flat sets, but don't have a specific model in mind yet.

My criteria is the best picture for the money, and I'm not worried about HD capabilities. And of course I'm looking for the best price.

Thanks for any tips.

Dan the Fan
post #2 of 14
Originally posted by danthefan
I'm looking to buy a good 36 inch flat screen TV...Can anyone here help me finalize my decision? My criteria is the best picture for the money, and I'm not worried about HD capabilities.
I think you're on the right track Dan. I tend to prefer Toshiba if only because their color decoders have a reputation for superior accuracy. Sony is also a good choice if you can swing it as their tweaks are better- documented than other brands.
post #3 of 14
go with the tosh, the sony is not worth it. I have it and do not find it particularly worth it after using it for this long and comparing it to the tosh.
post #4 of 14
Thread Starter 
Thanks for your advice. I like the Toshiba the best and Best Buy has it available for $1,169.99, the cheapest of the lot. I'll likely get it.

The next question is where is the best place to get a stand and matching audio cabinet for it? Are there any good online places or should I just stick to my local stores?

Thanks! Dan the Fan
post #5 of 14
Not sure what your price range is, but did you take a look at the Princeton Graphics sets. These can also double as computer monitors.
post #6 of 14
Thread Starter 
I'd like to stay near $1000. Right now I don't have a need to use TV as a computer monitor, so I'd rather not pay extra for that functionality.

Thanks for the tip though.

Dan the Fan
post #7 of 14
I'm looking at getting the Sony 36xbr450 and was trying to find a good looking entertainment center for it. The only place that I could find that had decent looking setups for a TV of this size was Ikea.
post #8 of 14
Personally, I gave up trying to find an entertainment center to hold a 36xbr450. I purchased the "matching" TV stand to hold it and I've been using a rack on the side for all my components. Works well for me. TV stand helps to hold my other misc crap that sometimes gets plugged into my TV. ie camcorder, Sega Saturn, etc.

But, to assist your search for an entertainment center, IKEA will be one of the more affordable places to look for to hold that size TV. Every once in a while, Circuit City and Best Buy have some sale on entertainment centers. Places like Scandanavian Designs has a few setups that will accomodate 36" TVs. (I have looked in a while so if Scandanavian Designs and their ilk do not have anything, please don't blame me. :) )

An alternative is do what an ex-boss of mine did. He build his own. For the price of materials and a 6pack of beer, he was willing to build one to my specs. Since he is big into woodworking, it was a pretty good deal. Of course, I changed jobs and states a month after he offered so I didn't take him up on it. One of my other co-workers was though. Something to think about if you know someone with the tools, etc to do it.
post #9 of 14
I just want a decent coffee table that has shelf below it. The top is used for the 36" set while below are all the game consoles, receiver and DVD player. My parents have something sweet downstairs but it wasl ike $600 and not meant for TVs etc but still it looks hot.

I need to worry about getting the TV set first..still deciding between directview or RPTV.
post #10 of 14
Thread Starter 
Ok, I was all set on the Toshiba 36AF61 but then saw this review that said it doesn't have progressive scan. Isn't this a big downside of this TV?


Should I spent the extra money for progressive scan? And for that matter, should I spend the money for HDTV-ready?

Thanks, Dan the Fan
post #11 of 14
My thought on this matter is that if you're considering spending that much money on a TV, you really ought to go the extra mile and get one that's HD ready. It should provide you with a much longer useful life.

post #12 of 14
Thread Starter 
Ok, I spent time at Circuit City, Best Buy and a local audio video store tonight doing research. Here's what I've narrowed it down to:

36" Analog Direct View Sets:

Toshiba 36AF61 - on sale at Best Buy for $1169.

Panasonic CT36XS31 - on close-out sale at local store for $999. They have a sale starting this weekend that will likely mark it down more.

43" Digital Projection Sets:

Sony KP43HT20 - On sale at Best Buy & Circuit City for $1799.

Toshiba 43H71 - On sale at Best Buy for $1619.

Ok, so I'm faced with under $1000 for the Panasonic analog flat direct view TV, or $1799 for the Sony digital projection TV. Here's my criteria:

- 99% of my TV viewing is analog cable recorded on TiVo or VCRs.
- 1% of my viewing is DVD (currently non-progressive scan).

Advantages of 43" digital sets over 36" analog sets:

- Larger viewing size
- Digital 1080i for future use of HDTV
- Progressive scan makes analog TV look twice as good.
- Lighter TV


- No direct view yields less bright picture, glare from sunlight.
- Cost

So what am I missing? Would you spend an additional $800+ for the Sony over the Panasonic?

Thanks everyone, I appreciate the help.

Dan the Fan
post #13 of 14
Yes, I would. With the Contrast and Brightness set properly on the Sony, you are set for a looooong tine. You may never buy a new set after this. When you go HD down the road, you will be in heaven.

Set your DVD player to 16X9 and marvel at the difference, since this set does the anamorphic squeeze.
post #14 of 14
Thread Starter 
I was thinking the same thing, but the whole DVI/HDCP/HDMI discussion thread is scaring me off. Should I really be investing in a digital TV right now that doesn't include these new formats?

Dan the Fan
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