After years of no cable and nothing but CRT televisions, I finally broke down and joined the rest of America in our headlong plunge into digital nirvana. Comcast is the local cable company and I had never heard anything good about them. You give them a hunnert bucks a month and they give you lousy service and pump a zillion channels of advertisements into your home. That did not sound like a very good deal to me.
Last year Verizon, the local phone company installed fiber optic cables in my neighborhood. This year they are offering digital TV. I am not sure what is was that caused me to finally buy into this. Perhaps it is because I dislike going anywhere, and TV brings the world to me without my having to suffer through all the hassles and inconvenience of actually travelling. Perhaps because it is Christmas and I was feeling generous. In any case, I called Verizon and ordered their digital TV service.
Last weekend, the wife and I went to Costco and looked at the big TV's. They had a bunch: plasma and LCD flat screens and some DLP rear projection units. On that day the LCD's looked better than the plasma, they were also cheaper. I did notice that there was some lagging in some of the action images, but I figured it was something I could live with. I took some notes and later on settled on either a 42" or 47" Vizio LCD.
Friday I took the boys with me to go buy one of these two televisions. Instead, they gravitate to the plasma units. They do not seem to suffer from lagging like the LCD units, and the picture seems better. They have a nice Panasonic unit that has a $300 instant rebate, which makes it only $50 more than the larger Vizio unit I was considering. It is not 1080p compatible, it only has a horizontal resolution of 1300 and some odd pixels, but I think that will be enough for now. The way electronics is evolving it may be obsolete in five or ten years.
I bought a Panasonic home theater sound system to go with it. They had a Sony unit that was a little cheaper, but I thought that by buying the same brand, they (the television and the sound system) might play together better. So far the only glitch is that I need an HDMI cable, which was not included with either unit. Freddie's (the local super market) had one for $60. I passed. Newegg has them for $6. But I will wait on that until Verizon shows up to do their installation, which is supposed to happen Thursday.
So I bought the TV and sound system and the boys and I carted them home. I let the boys unload and set it all up, which they were very happy to do. And we watched movies and the boys played video games all weekend. I watched four movies this weekend, and three of them I had seen before. It was really a big improvement over watching shows on the old TV. And the old CRT is no slouch. It is a 36" monster. It will probably be in our basement forever. No one is going to want to carry it out. I think it weighs close to 300 pounds.
Bringing this big screen TV home has created another problem and that is how are we going to arrange the TV room to accommodate it? The wardrobe has been forced against the window, not that the window was ever used, but it is still a little tacky. I am going to have to buy a new piece of furniture to support the TV and all its' ancillary equipment. And it is going to have to be a decent piece of furniture which means it will probably cost upwards of $300. Oh well, what else is money for?