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Old 05-19-2009, 10:19 PM   #1
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Bargain tv's

I found a nice summary of low dollar tv's.

Best Budget HDTVs

With retailers trying to entice buyers, you don't have to sacrifice quality to save money
By Nick Mokey, Digital TrendsWith stock prices falling and 401Ks crumbling daily, now might seem like a dubious time to go and spring for an oversized high-definition television (HDTV). But here's the kicker, provided you can afford to liberate some cash from under your mattress: Deals on the sets have never been more enticing. Not only has the pace of technology ensured that top-tier technology has quickly filtered down to budget models, but retailers are also dropping costs more and more every day as they attempt to reel in bargain hunters.

Long story short: It's a buyer's market. We've rounded up several of the industry's most affordable models, and all prices represent what you should actually be able to find these sets for in the current state of heavy discounts (not original MSRPs).

1. Panasonic Viera X1 Series TC-P42X1 42-Inch Plasma

Home theater aficionados prize plasma televisions for their deep black levels and fast response times, and when you're talking plasma, Panasonic is the go-to brand. This entry-level model forgoes 1080p resolution to get in under the sub-$1000 mark, but still delivers all the format's other benefits via a generous 42-inch screen, making it great for sports and movie fans.

2. Samsung LN40B530 40-inch LCD

Picking a new TV from Samsung's sprawling array of sets to match every taste and budget can seem like finding a needle in a haystack, but the LN40B530 stands out for its full 1080p resolution, size, and sultry half-transparent bezel. Critics also praise it for its superior color palette and performance with motion, even though it doesn't boast a 120Hz refresh rate.

3. Vizio SV420XVT 42-inch LCD

Vizio has occasionally been met with criticism for its sometimes subpar quality and aggressive marketing strategies, but the company has scratched its way to the position of top LCD TV maker in the United States for good reason: No other company can offer the features Vizio does at the same price. This particular set offers sizable screen real estate, 1080p resolution, multiple HDMI inputs and a 120Hz refresh rate for smoother fast-motion shots a feature none of the other TVs in this price range are able to offer.

4. Samsung PN42B450 42-Inch Plasma

Panasonic may be the stand-out leader in plasma, but fellow manufacturer Samsung has also received accolades for the outstanding balance of price, features, and image quality in the PN42B450. Like the Panasonic plasma mentioned earlier, it only offers 720p resolution, though most won't be complaining given the still obviously HD picture quality and solid black levels touted. A classy piano-black bezel is the icing on the cake.

5. Sony KDL-32S5100 32-inch BRAVIA S Series LCD

Yes, you can buy a Sony set for under a grand. Case in point: If you have a smaller room to fill and want to keep performance top notch, the full 1080p resolution, 30,000:1 contrast ratio and three HDMI connectors on this model make it an ideal centerpiece for a compact but well-equipped home theater. And unless you're watching a lot of high-speed movies and sports, you probably won't miss the 120Hz refresh rate found on much pricier models.

6. LG 37LH20 37-inch LCD

The specs on this set don't read terribly different from many of the others in this list, including 720p resolution, a 60Hz refresh rate, and only two HDMI ports. But the 37LH20 does have some LG-specific features setting it apart, including a built-in sound system tuned by audio expert Mark Levinson and a LG's Picture Wizard for tweaking the TV to your own tastes without calibration tools. And if you do choose to ante up and have a pro assist with set configuration, all the ISF settings they'll need are easily accessible.

7. Toshiba 40RV525R 40-Inch LCD

Like the Samsung 40-incher included here, this midrange Toshiba offers many high-end features including full 1080p resolution and three HDMI inputs rolled into a modest 40-inch display. Proprietary extras include Toshiba DynaLight, which automatically adjusts the backlight for better black levels, and a "Gaming Mode" to reduce lag time on between console and screen.

8. Sharp Aquos LC-32BD60U 32-inch LCD with Built-in Blu-ray Player

Sure, you can get a standalone player for $200 these days, but if you factor that on top of another one of these TVs, you're almost certainly going to be over your $900 price limit. Getting it bundled in with this 32-inch Sharp Aquos display (which also has 1080p resolution to show off Blu-ray in all its glory) is actually a bargain.

9. LG 42LG50 42-inch LCD

Finding a brand-name 42-inch LCD display with 1080p resolution under $900 can be tough. But LG's 42LG50 fits the bill, delivering just that, along with three HDMI inputs, a 15,000:1 dynamic contrast ratio, and an intelligent sensor that readjusts TV settings based on room conditions automatically. Unlike the Vizio, you won't get 120Hz scan rates, but LG's reputation alone might be worth the substitution for some buyers.

10. Philips 42PFL5603D/27

If the aesthetics of your new TV are as important to you as the image that fills it, this Philips set should put to rest any home decorating concerns. A layer of clear acrylic extending over glossy black lends the unit a unique and contemporary look that should attract onlookers even when it's turned off. And though the panel specs aren't anything to write home about, the price isn't exactly anything to complain about either.
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Old 05-19-2009, 10:36 PM   #2
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panny plasmas ftw
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Old 05-19-2009, 11:28 PM   #3
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Originally Posted by glockman9c View Post
panny plasmas ftw


I bought my 42 inch PZ85U in February based on reviews and what you and Hayabusa had to say about them.

No regrets at all !
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Old 05-19-2009, 11:42 PM   #4
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I have a panasonic that a friend left with me while he is out of the country. I think I might have to get one soon
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Old 05-20-2009, 10:56 PM   #5
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I saw a panny plasma at costco for $650 the other day. It was only 720, but still a good price for a 42"
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