On a Budget...need some opinions and advice

thor79

DTVUSA Member
#1
On a Budget...need some opinions

Looking to spend under $1000 for a new LCD (total including tax). Tax return money and this is my first big TV (the 24" I currently have is my biggest yet, and it's still computer monitor size). I want to get the best value set (features vs. price). Can't go bigger than 42" (space constraints primarily)...so my range is like 37-42". I don't want a plasma because of the power consumption...I'll have a high enough electric bill with all my computers.

Ideally I'd like to pick one up locally...nearby I have Sams Club and Walmart...30 minute drive or so I have a Best Buy and the Woodfield or Straford Square Malls as well as a CostCo (though I'm not a member of CostCo, only Sam's Club). Beyond that I have a CompUSA Outlet (Naperville, IL) and a Fry's Electronics (both about 45-hour drive). And I'm sure there are plenty of specialty electronics/home theater shops around, don't know any off hand.

One in particular I'm interested in is the Vizio SV421XVT at Sams's Club for $848 (With tax it'll run likely around $925-$950, not exactly sure of the tax rate). 42" 240Hz LCD (120Hz with a scanning backlight). My question is...does the scanning backlight make a big difference or is one of their 120Hz LCDs good enough for most purposes?

I typically watch very little sports (though recently been watching blackhawks hockey on WGN since I get it OTA in HD)...mostly TV shows and movies. I play both Bluray and HD-DVD movies of all genres (do love action though). I also download movies with my Roku (720p currently) and my Xbox 360 (Zune 1080p). And yes I also game with the 360 and my PS3 on my TV.

I would like at least 3 HDMI ports...as that's how many ports I'm currently using via a little HDMI switch on my 24" TV. Ideally I'd like 4 so I could plug in my HTPC directly. The remote isn't really a big issue as I have a Harmony remote I'll be using, though a nice remote never hurts and the one that comes with the Vizio above looks to be a good one. Despite having a harmony I still have a table full of remotes that I still occasionally use. Sound isn't incredibly important as with my harmony remote I automatically fire up the speaker system I have and leave the TV's speakers off.

I've already seen and played with the Vizio I mentioned above at the display at Sam's and I liked it quite a bit (saw the picture and messed with the menu system on the TV...fit all my criteria)...and I know they have plenty of stock (went there on Sunday). It's last year's model...the latest one, SV422XVT, just began shipping. As far as I can see though the only difference is the addition of the internet connectivity, which I don't really need considering the other devices I already own. Unless someone can give me a reason not to buy Vizio...or to go with something else...this is likely what I'll buy. Shooting for a purchase near the end of the month.

Opinions? I know it sounds like I made my mind up...and I basically have...I just want some opinions here to validate/shoot down my own.

Oh and if anyone wants to know I currently have a Samsung Touch of Color T240HD as my TV. It's a bit small for it's new place in my apartment...a 42" would fit very nicely in it's place. IMO the menu system could be a little better....picture is good though I wish it had better viewing angles. Oh and my sound system to go with my TV is complete...finally got my surround sound setup tonight.
 
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EscapeVelocity

Moderator, , Webmaster of EV's Antenna Blog
#2
It is a very good TV. I was smitten with the SV420XVT.

Should work well for you, dont forget you get 1 year of Costco warranty on top of your 1 Year Vizio Warranty.

I have both the GV42L 720p and the GV42LF 1080p 42" Vizio LCDs, with Florescent Backlights, and they are both doing fine. The GV42LF was a big improvement over the GV42L, though.

Id like to get rid of the GV42L (though there is nothing really wrong with it) and pick up a 32" Vizio Plasma or maybe a Panasonic or Pioneer 50" Plasma.
 

EscapeVelocity

Moderator, , Webmaster of EV's Antenna Blog
#3
One thing to make sure of and it sounds like you can use it is that the 421 has zero overscan (at least as an option) aka 1 to 1 pixel mapping. This is for computer monitor use.

My 1080p GV42LF has this.
 

thor79

DTVUSA Member
#4
Yeah I read about their warranties...which is why I'm considering them. Problem is...they price the newer model (this year's model, the only 42" they have listed for Vizio) $50 more than Sam's and I have the membership cost on top of that...so I'm looking at $100 more even before the tax (though the tax would probably be a bit less than up here where I live, the schaumburg/cook county area has terrible taxes).

edit: Use on a computer is important considering I'll have my HTPC hooked up to it for XBMC and Boxee as well as just using it as a regular PC with a wireless keyboard/trackball.

How did you determine it has zero overscan? I'm not familiar with that.
 
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EscapeVelocity

Moderator, , Webmaster of EV's Antenna Blog
#5
Well, save a $100, if they have it at Sams. The Costco warranty used to be way WAY better, and would have been worth it, however that warranty was abused and so it was scaled way back.

I would google for that information. You could ask at the Vizio site as well. Or you could hook up a laptop and look at the edge screen bars to see if they are cut off at all.

Here is wikipedia on what overscan is...
 

EscapeVelocity

Moderator, , Webmaster of EV's Antenna Blog
#7
Vizio site touts "Computer Input"

My guess is it should do 1x1 pixel mapping, as that was a known issue several years ago, and most of the manufacturers have probably moved to that.

You can always check by taking a lappy to the Sams and plugging it in.
 

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