Consumer Reports: HDTV Buying Guide

We love HDTVs and so does Consumer Reports. Yay! Extensive internet research tells us that there is a good chance you are in the market for a HDTV; this information couldn’t have come at a better time. CR is a fan of the recent price drops on big HD sets, and, while they like flat screen TVs, the best deal is a real-projection set, “Sleek, thin LCD and plasma flat panels are the hottest TVs out there, but if you’re in the market for a truly big-screen high-definition TV, check out rear-projection TVs. These give you the most screen for the money–50, 60, even 70 inches–and some offer top picture quality.”

Ohhh, get shopping!—MEGHANN MARCO

Rear-Projection HDTVs: More Screen, Less Green [Consumer Reports]
HD for the holidays [Consumer Reports]


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  1. errr..umm…the best HDTV buying guide would be not to buy one at all…They’re still overpriced and poorly implemented.

  2. mfergel says:

    I agree with crayonshinobi…..and as for rear projection, yeah, great deal if you are willing to give up a huge amount of real estate in your viewing room due to the depth of the units…, be prepared to only be able to sit in the sweet spot (center of the viewing area).

  3. Plus, if I wanted to look at other people’s pores that close up, I’d be a dermatologist. High definition humans are not necessarily pretty.

  4. bambino says:

    What’s with all the negativity. I love my 32″ LCD, I’ll never go back to CRT.

  5. Papercutninja says:

    High Def tvs are the greatest. Unless you buy one of those dopey RPTVs. Even the best of the DLP projection tvs are inferior to LCDs, Plasmas and CRTs. You need a straight on viewing angle in a dark room to see anything clearly. Yes, they’re the best value, because they’re the cheapest.

  6. Negative says:

    I love my 64″ rear projection. While it is much bigger than my 42″ plasma it really doesn’t take up that much room.

    If your living room can’t handle the two feet by five feet that a rear projection takes then how can you fit a regular TV that sits in a entertainment center? Those take up just as much space as a rear projection TV.

    Also, the further you sit away from a rear projection the wider the viewing angle. The only time I have issues with the viewing angle is if I try to sit closer than 5-6 feet. With a screen that big it would be silly to sit that close.

  7. Uurp says:

    I beg to differ, Paper Cut. I have one of those “dopey RPTVs”–a Sony KDS-R50XBR1. It uses an LCoS microdisplay (no color wheel needed). The specs?

    130-degree viewing angle, you’d have to be uncomfortably far off-axis to the screen in order to see any loss.

    18.8 inches deep. Not exactly what I’d call a huge amount of real estate. I believe John Holmes was deeper.

    Overpriced? I got mine on sale (the only time to buy!) and although it was not cheap by any means it was far less thyan what some fools are paying for a PS3 on eBay this week.

    Picture quality? I’m a real stickler for quality, and I have no complaints. I can’t even bear to watch my 2-year old WEGA CRT any more. And compared to the plasmas and LCDs I looked at in its price range, the XBR was clearly, clearly superior.

    I have an older Pioneer CRT that the new TV replaced, and although they’re both rear projection, the newer Son’y sleek lines cannot be compared to the huge black monolith of the old TV.

  8. pete says:

    The best HDTV buying guide is to find the local geek and bring him/her shopping with you.
    I’ve helped 8 of my friends with their HDTV purchases so far, and all are loving their HD sets.
    My guide? Flat panel – 42″ and under =LCD (Westinghouse -best deal), 50″ and over = plasma (Pioneer/Panasonic).
    Rear projection = newer Sony Lcos models.
    Front projection = special situation, too many to list.
    Golden rule – room size (viewing distance) dictates TV size.

  9. Drinker Nisti says:

    I’m holding off for another year or two– there just isn’t enough HD programming available to justify the expense for me… (‘Tho I do love watching football on my friends Mighty Big TVs…)