I haven’t watched TV in about 4 years. I only ever do at other people’s houses or back home in Singapore cos the TV we have has a shit tuner and we just can’t get it to work without grainy images consistently. My housemate who owns the TV has recently decided he’s gonna uproot himself to Melbourne so that means we’re TVless!

Now, I’m not fussed about no TV programs to watch but no movies? No PS3? No Fifa??? You’re off your head. So I step up to the plate with the cash money and we’re gonna get a 42″ LG Plasma. It’s not Full HD. It’s not insanely massive. It’s AUD570.

I had to do all this research. Like pick out Plasma vs LCD vs LED. Or what specs to look for and how much and where and what else. Here’s the TV buying walkthrough I’ve gleaned from online and offline sources.

  1. Size matters. Bigger is better but don’t get a TV that is bigger than your room. Size is the first thing to consider and also the most important.
  2. The type of screen just depends on your usage pattern. Generally, LED is great if you’ve got money to burn. Plasma is heaps better than the tech of old and is actually the best for watching movies. LCD is best if your TV is gonna be used as a monitor. But instead of listening to what people say, I found the best thing to do was to compare screens in a store. I like Plasma best for it’s more natural look but the biggest drawback it has is it’s super reflective in bright daylight.
  3. Specs are not important. Response time, contrast ratio etc etc etc. All mostly sales mumbo jumbo. The numbers don’t translate to much in real terms and 4ms response is not 2x > 8ms response.
  4. Full HD is only good if you have Full HD content.
  5. Make sure there’s a HD tuner. Most modern sets have one now.
  6. Check the number/type of slots and shit. There’s usually enough but just be sure you know what you’re getting.
  7. 3D is shit, why do people even bother?
  8. I can surf the net on my TV or I can do it on my computer. With a mouse. Or an iPad with my finger.
  9. Wireless connectivity is cool but you can also buy a wireless attachment thingey too.
  10. Brands don’t matter all that much.
  11. Get cheap HDMI cables. If you’re hooking up a DVD/Bluray/Console. Just buy HDMI cables from online or a computer store. For something like $15, you’ll get something that works just as well as those that cost 3-5 times the price. Cables are a ripoff.
  12. Don’t listen to the sales pitch. Fuck the warranty. Fuck the free cable/cleaner/surge protector. Fuck all that. Get them down to the lowest price and screw everything else. You don’t need it. If they can give you $100 worth of freebies, ask for $100 off instead.
So here’s my breakdown for why I’m getting what I am. 42″ is a massive upgrade from the 32″ I’ve used for the past 2 years and I’m probably only gonna be living in smallish spaces for the next 3-4 years. Plasma because it’s cheaper than anything else for the size and also because I don’t like how LCDs look. I wasted too much time dawdling over everything else and shoulda just robokopped with first instincts.
So yeah, I can only tune into one channel somehow of regular TV but Aus TV is shit anyway. More importantly, I can see my player’s shirt rippling with his movement in Fifa and fog rising over the hills in Skyrim.