What Size Screen or Television Do I Need?

A

admin

Audioholics Robot
Staff member
Ratings
1,627
#1
We get asked this question alot and we have, in fact, addressed it during the course of various projector and flat panel reviews. It is an important topic, however, and we feel that it is truly worthy of some personal attention - especially given these times of rapidly dropping flat panel display prices. While many believe that "bigger is always better," getting the right screen size means that you can truly optimize your home theater budget and allocate your money in teh best way possible to make sure you get the best visuals and sound possible. We'll take you through several ways to effectively determine the best screen size for your room, and give you some general guidelines for figuring out your own needs.


Discuss "What Size Screen or Television Do I Need?" here. Read the article.
 
Wayde Robson

Wayde Robson

Audioholics Anchorman
Ratings
160
#2
"so it's probably best to err on the side of going a bit larger."

I like that rule.

Great measurement excercise, I'll have to try it at the local cineplex.

I know I am probably not alone in my preference to have most of my peripheral vision taken up when I'm watching a movie. My pref is to sit comfortably, stare at the middle of the screen and not see much but the screen.

I want to feel vertigo in the dragon flight scenes in Eragon. Yeah, I'm the type that sits near the front of the theater, although if it's going to be crowded I usually try and take a seat near an edge, because I have to pee at least once - it's a bit of an annoyance.

I should stop drinking beer before going to the movies.:eek:
 
J

Jim Robbins

Audioholic
Ratings
15
#3
Wow, that's an excellent article! I haven't thought about it in this way before. That's a pretty simple formula for figuring out what you think "big" is. Yeah, erring on the side of big is good, but if you get motion sick, like Wayde there, you might want to go to the slightly smaller size. Of course, there is always the WAF to consider. (Wife Acceptance Factor) *grin* To be fair, I have met a couple of women who wanted a bigger screen than their husbands. It's a rare occurrence.... Even though my wife isn't one of those, she still allows me to have a 106" screen. Yeah, that's big. Hmmm... I wonder if I could go bigger. ;)
 
GlocksRock

GlocksRock

Audioholic Spartan
Ratings
958
#5
I agree with the article, when I was 8 feet away from my old 50" tv it was just right. So when I moved into my new house, and was sitting 12 feet away, it seemed too small so I got a 73" tv, and it's just right. It's definitely a big tv, but it was a better option for me than going with a front projection setup. But it all comes down to personal preference, and budget. But for the money you can't really beat a DLP when it comes to screen size for your money.
 
supervij

supervij

Audioholic General
Ratings
108
#7
That is a such a simple formula, I never woulda thought of doing it that way! Nice! It also confirms a handy rule of thumb I discovered: take your eyeball-to-screen distance and divide by two. That will give you a ballpark figure of what size (diagonal) screen to look for. Worked great for me: I'm 100 inches away from my 50-inch TV. For SD, it's a tad soft, but for HD, it's just a wee too small -- a good balance, since I watch both.

cheers,
supervij
 
jaydog67

jaydog67

Enthusiast
Ratings
1
#8
great article

I have a living room at my apartment that is 14 feet deep by 18 wide. I had a smaller room at our last place. We have a 60" phillips HD projection tv and it fits alot better in our new apartment. The last house's room we had the tv in was about 12 feet deep. So there is the possibility of having too much of a tv.
 
Phil Taylor

Phil Taylor

Senior Audioholic
Ratings
201
#9
I sit 9ft away from my 7ft wide front projector screen. Does that make me abnormal? :eek:
 
J

Jacko123

Audiophyte
#11
What size do you need....

IT's not about what size TV you need, it's about what size TV you want!
 
J

jberc

Audiophyte
#12
moving target

I'm 100 inches away from my 50-inch TV. For SD, it's a tad soft, but for HD, it's just a wee too small -- a good balance, since I watch both.

cheers,
supervij
Funny, I have the same experience. I actually move my sofa closer or further from my 50 inch depending on what I'm watching. Open floorplan, hardwood floors and felt sliders make it easy.
 
M

mikeboy

Audiophyte
#13
HD connection on new sets

I heard that it was silly to buy 1080p, because cable companies do not support this. Is this true?

Also, is it necessary to buy some sort of connecting wire for HD, as opposed to the normal connection coming with the cable outlet? If one has basic cable, does one have to rent a box to get the HD on the major networks, e.g. if one is plugged into the wall outlet to avoid an A/B switch?

Thanks.
 
1

1tribeca

Audioholic
Ratings
7
#14
I wouldn't say it was "silly" to have 1080p capable equip.

The cable companies broadcast HD in 1080i not 1080p (google the difference, takes too long to scribble down here...besides, it's been explained to death!)

Bluray is the only source material where you'll get 1080p. Is it worth it? Depends on the individual. If you're sitting 12 feet from a 42" TV then you won't see the benefit of the additional pixel count. If you're less than 8 feet you'll enjoy the step up in PQ.

The whole "1080p" thing is a great sales tool for retailers & manufacturers alike. It's a good bit of technology, but far from being the stand alone decision maker. You have to consider a whack of other criteria when making your choice...contrast/black levels, lifelike colour reproduction etc. I've seen many 720p panels kick the crap out of a lesser quality 1080p panel based on the other viewing factors!

You need a digital cable box to get the upper channels on the cable bandwidth. NOTE: a basic digital box DOES NOT give you HD channels!!

To get HD from the cable company you'll need an HD box (go figure!!!) same applies for satellite.

Once you have the aforementioned HD box, you can get the HD content to your TV one of 2 ways.

1) Connection through component cables (red, blue, green) A seperate audio connection is needed with this configuration...either analog L/R or a digital connection
2) HDMI cable. This will do the whole thing (however, some prefer to route the audio to a different input) I know here in Toronto, the Rogers cable boxes can have some issues with HDMI cables (get with the program Rogers!!)

You CANNOT get HD from your HD box with composite (single yellow RCA connector) connection, or S-Video either!!
 
O

onlinegadgeteer

Audiophyte
#15
If you are watching television from to near. You can use 21'' inch television and from my suggestion Sony is best for all the things.
 
L

latiger12

Audiophyte
#16
I heard that it was silly to buy 1080p, because cable companies do not support this. Is this true?

Also, is it necessary to buy some sort of connecting wire for HD, as opposed to the normal connection coming with the cable outlet? If one has basic cable, does one have to rent a box to get the HD on the major networks, e.g. if one is plugged into the wall outlet to avoid an A/B switch?

Thanks.
Not silly, you want to buy the 1080p TV to get the best possible picture quality. My cable company supports 1080p and so does my BlueRay DVD player.

The normal cable wire out of the wall will connect to an HD receiver provided by the cable company if you get the HD package. You should then by and HDMI cable to connect the box to the TV. Buy the wire online, they are WAY over priced in retail stores.
 
D

drdawg

Junior Audioholic
Ratings
1
#19
bigger is better!

I joke with my wife about bigger is better and how we have a 13 foot room from wall to where we sit on the couch a bit more to the tv screen as we have ours above our fireplace mantel(one that i wish i could rip out!, but she wont let me). But we were at the store last weekend and she was like why don't we get a 65 inch one. Perfect for me as i like the size and the distance and it may keep my eyes off the damn mantel!
 

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