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Home Theatre Room - Need All Purpose TV

991 Views 3 Replies 3 Participants Last post by  Maverickster2
Hey all,

I'm building a new house and will include a new home theater room. The room will be about 11 x 13 so space is somewhat limited, but lighting won't be an issue since there will be no windows. This will be a full TV-entertainment room for me and my kids (18 & 12). I will use the TV for many movies, sporting events, and HDTV but I will also have a PS3 and my Laptop routinely running games (probably a couple of hours+ per day).

I have 3 serious contenders for my TV selection. I've spent lots of time narrowing it down to these but now I need to decide which one is right for my purposes and conditions.

My choices are:

Samsung LN52A750 (52" LCD)

Samsung PN58A550 (58" Plasma)

Panasonic TH50PZ800 (50" Plasma)
The prices are all different but each is within my budget so that's not one of my major concerns. I just want the best possible picture for all of my needs.

Advice and recommendations would be greatly appreciated!

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If you've narrowed it down to those three, you have to decide which pros and cons of each are most important to you (I love to state the obvious

1) Bigger is almost always better when you're going to be watching a lot of movies

2) Warranty length and reliability reputation should play a factor

3) If you play a lot of games and/or watch a lot of fast action sports (hockey, racing, etc.), you may want to lean toward the plasmas (I know, LCDs have improved in these areas, but I'm still partial to plasmas)

4) Are you going to calibrate these yourself with a DVE or Avia disc, or have a professional calibrator come over? If professional, being able to get into menus to change gamma levels, color management, etc. will help you achieve a more accurate picture, and some models allow more access to those menus/options than others.

5) Are you going to be using external audio, i.e. a receiver and surround speakers, or are you going to be sticking with the TV speakers? If no surround sound, make sure you're happy with the audio of the TV you pick (otherwise, not a factor).

Personally, if I had to pick, I tend toward Pioneer or Panasonic plasmas, but the size of the Samsung plasma would offer a slightly better movie experience. I'd probably still go with the Panasonic plasma, though, unless I could save a little more and get a Panny in a 60". I'm sure you'll get more advice from owners of those three models (I have a pioneer kuro upstairs and a Panasonic front projector downstairs). I'm just hoping to give you a couple more things to consider, since you're the one that needs to be happy with your choice.

Good luck!
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Thanks for my first reply SchroedK. Just to answer a couple of your questions:

I expect to have a Pro set it up for me.

I won't be using the TV-audio. I expect to have a full set (7+1) of Klipsch speakers and a Yamaha 6180 or 6190 receiver.

Thanks again for the input, keep the opinions coming guys.
What's your time frame? Panny's 58" 800U's should be here around the end of the summer/beginning of the fall. To echo Schroedk, bigger is [almost] always better; you don't often hear people complain that the TV they bought was "too big" (the opposite complaint is fairly common). Unless the Pioneer 6020 is also within your budget, this is the TV I would get. Another advantage of it is that it will have the THX video settings which, supposedly (I haven't personally seen this), give you a perfectly (or nearly perfectly) calibrated set without all of the monkeying around the rest of us had to do with DVE/Avia/Pros/etc.; again, that's just based on reports I've read here regarding the 50pz800u, but that alone would be worth it to me.

Good luck!

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