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I've been contemplating the purchase of a rptv for quite some time. It would be a nice upgrade from my svideo in-only 27" panasonic.

My main reason for not purchasing an rptv is that I keep telling myself to wait for better products to become available at the same prices. Why spend $2500 on a ~50" rptv when I can wait and get a plasma down the road for almost the same amount of money? Or, I could wait and get the new DLP based rptvs for even less. Is a dlp based rptv that much better than a standard rptv? should I wait and pursue a plasma screen?

As I've told others on this board, there will always be something bigger and better. Am i beating my head into the ground here?
 

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plasma = better is an opinion. I think the first thing you should do is research the pros/cons of each type (crt, dlp, lcd, projection, tube, etc.) and compare with what you will be watching.


As an example of a tradeoff, you mention s-video on your 27" tube. If you are talking about satellite or digital cable, my experience is that these sources look better on a small tube set (32" or less) than on a large RPTV (mine is 65"). DVD's or HD, however? I myself could wait no more! As a bonus, I find myself watching less of all of the junk that is on TV anyway to the point that I've threatened to get rid of everything except networks. However, I expect my wife would die (or divorce me) without Home and Garden .


Good luck in your search.
 

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You'll always be able to get better technolgy at a lower cost in the future. On that basis, you'll never buy anything.


A better question is what do you want to do with a RPTV? Watch lots of DVD's? Have access to reasonable amount of HD? If yes, then a RPTV makes lots of sense now.
 

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I agree with RichUF, and would add this about plasma: ones with comparable resolution to a good RPTV are several years away from your budget. Cheaper plasmas with 480 max resolution limit everything to state-of-the-art 1998 quality, i.e., SD DVD quality, though they make it look as good as it can. Better sources like Over-The-Air HDTV and future HD DVDs could look a lot better if they're not constrained to 480.


If your budget goes up, look at some of the better plasmas. Until then, an RPTV will likely be a better value at your price point. Quieter, too, since RPTVs don't have fans.
 

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I'm in the same boat, wanting to replace my 27" panasonic with something. Right now the samsung DLP seems to be right for me. Except that I watch 80% interlaced signals. Sigh, this is hard.


My take on it is, you have to jump in sometime. There may always be something better around the corner. Waiting for the next best thing may mean that you wait for a very long time. When you jump in is up to you tho.


mg
 

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Join the club! I've been teetering on the edge of buying for two years now and I still can't bring myself to take the leap! I just cannot find a TV that doesn't force me to bite the bullet and make a big compromise:


1. CRT-based RPTVs have a serious burn-in issue on 4x3 material (and station logos), and their native resolution is nowhere near competitive to the latest DLP and LCD based TVs.


2. Plasma TVs have an even more serious burn-in issue than CRT-based RPTVs, and picture quality fades over time. Positively ridiculous performance given the exhorbitant prices that these sets carry.


3. DLP-based RPTVs seem to have the right resolution but all sets use a single DLP chip and colour wheel design that produce odd rainbow artifacts as well as eye fatigue. Availability is still limited and only Samsung and (soon) Panasonic make them.


4. I think that LCD based RPTVs are probably the best of breed right now, but even these sets have their problems. I've seen Sony's Grand Wega II and the resolution (like the DLP-based sets) is great. The only problem with this set is the black level. To explain the problem, I'll describe my experience with the GW in a showroom. They had another Sony and Toshiba of similar size on either side of the GW and they were showing a HDNet football game on all three sets. The game was being played on a bright sunny day and the stadium had a grandstand with two levels, with the top level casting a dark shadow on the bottom level. On the other Sony and Tosh, you could clearly distinguish people in the shadowed area. On the GW, the shadowed area was almost a solid black -- almost no detail whatsoever. And no, I don't think that adjusting the TV would eliminate this problem. The TV seemed properly calibrated anyway as the picture in the non-shadowed area looked gorgeous.


5. And finally, there's the NTSC issue. No ifs, ands, or buts, NTSC is terrible on all RPTV sets, period. I've given up on ever seeing a good NTSC picture on a widescreen RPTV -- it's just never going to happen. The manufacturers will not spend the money to put a good scaler on these TVs to solve what they consider to be a temporary problem as we transition from NTSC to HD. So, I think that during this transition a second direct-view set is mandatory. I'd recommend that you move the TV you will be replacing to another room (bedroom?) and continue to watch any NTSC you need to watch on that set.


So, that's the 'state-of-the-art' as I see it. If you buy now, be prepared to pick your compromise and spend big bucks. Personally, I think I'll wait another year and see if a no-compromise RPTV finally comes to market.
 

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Quote:
Originally posted by Flave
5. And finally, there's the NTSC issue. No ifs, ands, or buts, NTSC is terrible on all RPTV sets, period. I've given up on ever seeing a good NTSC picture on a widescreen RPTV -- it's just never going to happen.
Very, very subjective, and I hope your statement excludes NTSC DVD's. Depending on the transfer they range from good to fantastic on my RPTV. Other NTSC stuff, yes it's poor. I agree with most everything else you said, this part just sounded a little too gloomy. :)
 

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Personally I think anyting less than DVD (or perhaps SD digital cable depending on the provider) looks pretty bad even on a 32" direct view. Therefore I subscribe to Netflix and not to the premium cable channels. I don't watch movies on the other cable channels either just a few TV shows.


I am tired of watching widescreen DVD material on a 32" TV so I am just going to buy a GWII and let the Cable TV/Tivo PQ fall where it may. I can always watch more DVDs.
 
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