Those of you who know me know that in 2006, I picked up a 42″ 1080p Westinghouse LCD for $1499 from Best Buy, had a minor techincal difficulty with it that wasn’t promptly fixed to my satisfaction. After some calls back and forth to Customer Service to ensure the problem was fixed, and after the 42″ fell off the Westinghouse production line, Best Buy was happy to upgrade me, gratis, to the 47″ 1080p LCD screen. You also know I was thrilled with the 42″, and am even more thrilled with the 47″. Not only is it a thrill to watch the weekly antics of House or Jack Bauer in HD on the big screen, but HD-DVDs shine, and Halo 2 and Gears of War on the Xbox 360 are as near to immersive as I’ve experienced.
1080p is the holy grail in HDTV at this point, and it shows no signs of changing in the near future. Very likely, 1080p will remain the standard for years to come, given not only actions by Congress to pave that route, but also the amount invested by HD-DVD and Blu-Ray (both 1080p), and by the networks, which at their best broadcast in 1080i (which you’ll need at least a 1080i or 1080p HDTV to fully enjoy).
Now comes Westinghouse, reported via Gizmodo, with apparently another very affordable, high quality HDTV. The upcoming 52″ TX-52F480S LCD will sell for $2,499 and feature a 6.5 millisecond response time. If it’s like my 47″ LVM-47W1 and the 42″ LVM-42W2 (the discontinued 1080p model, not to be confused with the 42″ 720p model) before it, it’ll feature at least a 1200:1 contrast ratio, HDMI, multiple DVI, component inputs, VGA, among other goodies. More to come as news emerges, but given the nearly universally high ratings the 42″ and 47″ received, paired with the affordable price and the recent emergence of Westinghouse as a powerhouse producer of affordable but high quality HDTVs, I suggest you keep your eyes open.
For a representative review of the value of the 47″ Westy, click here.