So I've taken the plunge, though it wasn't easy. Many years of begrudgingly upgrading (8 tracks to audio cassettes --- vinyl to cd's ---- VHS to DVD) had taken its toll and made me cautious of the 'next big thing', but I gave in and got me an HD television.
But not without some research. Weeks of looking at 8 bit vs. 10 bit video processors and 720p or 1080i vs. 1080p comparisons not to mention 60hz vs. 120hz frame rate analysis finally resulted in a purchase, and Sony won out again.
I can play with madness.
I remember when I made my first high end TV/media purchase. The year was 1990 and I dived in deep with a 27" Sony XBR and a 4 head Sony VCR. The two didn't come cheap. The TV cost $2,700.00. The VCR was $600.00. That's $3,300.00. Plus taxes. Gulp.
But what a sight to behold...they so put my 20" Citizen Television and top loading JVC VCR to shame.
That said, a similar-sized LCD High-Def Sony TV and a discounted Blu-Ray Player today...under a thousand bucks. Taxes in. Throw in the digital HD cable box with built-in PVR, and no hernia carrying the boxes from car to house...triple threat.
And the experience of viewing your favourite movie or TV show in sparkling 1080p? Sweet. Oh so sweet.
But will these new entertainment display units be dependable and last? One upside of my old Sony was that it made it through three cross country moves with several unintentional drops, bumps, and bashes, and was still ticking last year before some tube or circuit crapped out and I didn't bother repairing it. Better still was it's remote control. A tank of a hand unit, all the buttons still worked and numbers still visible, even after fifteen years of constant use. I know of two friends TV's bought in the past couple years that already have scotch tape over the battery holder and the number 3 is caput.
So we shall see.
And will I ever be able to watch analog or SD (Standard Def) channels again? My friends who'd already gone HD who warned me that they (and therefore I) can't go back. And I will admit throwing up a bit in my mouth on Saturday after flipping to the Golf Channel after just enjoying the Leafs beat the Penguins on CBC HD.
Come on 2009 (or is it 2010?)!
This article from MediaPost lists the U.S. channels actually available today, plus the hype (or lack thereof) of what's to come.
As for the future, can the images get any better, sharper, crisper? Oh, probably. But there's one thing we do know for sure....they will get cheaper. The price of the one I got has already dropped, just in time for Xmas.