AVRev.com's HDTV Draft: The Best HDTVs For The 2007 Football Season 
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Written by Adrienne Maxwell   
Wednesday, 01 August 2007

It might be easier to pick a top-performing fantasy football running back than it is to choose the right HDTV to watch him on every Sunday. At AVRev.com, we have made it easy for you this year with an HDTV cheat sheet that gives you the inside track on the best, brightest and most resolute HDTVs on the market for this football season. Note: prices are subject to change, based on market conditions.

HP SL4278N 42-Inch MediaSmart LCD HDTV
Last year, HP introduced the MediaSmart LCD TV, with a built-in digital media receiver to which you can stream music, photos, and even HD video from your computer, over a wired or wireless network. The media function was a nice perk in an otherwise good-performing HDTV. The second-gen MediaSmart TVs have just arrived, and the specs look promising. The SL4278N ups the TV resolution to 1080p, offers three HDMI inputs, and adds 802.11n wireless functionality for better HD video streaming. The broadband Internet connection also provides access to online music, movies, radio, news, and, of course, sports updates.
www.hp.com, $2,299

Vizio VM60P 60-Inch Plasma HDTV
The best deal in town for a large-screen flat panel, Vizio’s VM60P is a strong performer to boot, especially with high-definition TV and film content. In exchange for the low $2,500 asking price, you must forfeit a 1080p resolution; otherwise, this 1366 x 768 plasma has a nice complement of features, including four HDMI inputs, Faroudja video processing, and SRS TruSurround XT audio processing. The TV will accept a 1080p signal from a high-definition disc player and downconvert it to its native resolution. It sports a sleek design, with two 20-watt speakers incorporated discreetly within the attractive, brushed-aluminum frame.
www.vizio.com, $2,500

Samsung HL-T5689S 56-Inch Rear-Projection HDTV
This 1080p rear-projection DLP TV uses an LED light engine, designed to address two common DLP issues: bulb replacement and rainbow effect. Great color, detail and contrast produce a beautiful HD image, and the super-thin bezel design emphasizes the 56-inch screen while keeping overall cabinet depth to just 14 inches. This TV is also loaded with features: three HDMI 1.3 inputs, a USB port for photo/MP3 playback, SRS TruSurround XT audio processing, and even built-in Bluetooth to connect with Bluetooth-enabled wireless headphones or a photo printer.
www.samsungusa.com, $2,799

Sony Bravia KDL-46XBR2 46-Inch LCD HDTV
In the rapidly changing world of flat-panel HDTV, this well-received Sony model could already be considered a veteran. The 46-inch, 1080p KDL-46XBR2, part of last year’s high-end XBR line, boasts accurate colors, great detail and an excellent contrast ratio, which combine to produce a gorgeous image with high-definition sources. The XBR LCD line has a stylish aesthetic with a faux-glass frame, and this TV features a nice array of connections and picture controls to fine-tune image quality. Sony recently introduced new XBR LCD models, which is why the price of the KDL-46XBR2 continues to fall. Get it while you can.
www.sonystyle.com, $3,000

Sharp AQUOS LC-46D92U 46-Inch LCD HDTV
Sharp’s D92 Series is their top-shelf 2007 LCD line, offering the best combination of performance, features and connections. This includes a 1080p resolution and a 120-Hz frame rate, which reduces the motion blurring that often hinders LCD performance with fast-moving sports programming. The new line also offers improved blacks, colors and overall contrast ratio to create a beautiful HD image, and it has a higher-end look than other AQUOS designs, with a piano-black frame and detachable speaker bar. The 46-inch LC-46D92U is our pick of the line, as it strikes a good balance between screen size and price.
www.sharpusa.com, $3,300

Mitsubishi Diamond Series Rear Projection HDTVs
Mitsubishi Diamond Series WD-57833 57-Inch Rear-Projection HDTV Reviews aren’t in yet on the new WD-57833, but last year’s Diamond Series rear pros fared very well, so we expect good things. This 1080p TV uses Smooth 120Hz technology to minimize motion blur and a six-color DLP light engine designed to produce a wider range of colors and whiter whites. The Diamond Series represents the best that Mitsubishi has to offer in terms of technology, picture controls and connection options, including four HDMI 1.3 inputs, FireWire, USB and RS-232. The cabinet is just 13.9 inches deep, and the Thin Frame design minimizes the cabinet’s appearance to maximize the impact of the 57-inch screen.
www.mitsubishi-tv.com, $3,399

Pioneer Elite Kuro PRO-1150HD 50-Inch Plasma HDTV
Say farewell to PureVision and hello to Kuro. Pioneer challenged their engineers to go back to the drawing board and develop a new plasma design that produces substantially better blacks, giving the entire image more depth and dimension. The result is the new Kuro line; if the prototypes are any indication, they’ve succeeded in their goal. Right now, the top-of-the-line model is the new 1365 x 768 Elite PRO-1150HD, which includes four HDMI 1.3 inputs and the Home Media Gallery feature for streaming music, photos and HD movies from a PC. If you can wait until September, Pioneer is adding four 1080p plasmas to the Kuro line, priced from $5,000 to $7,500.
www.pioneerelectronics.com, $4,500

Sony Bravia KDS-R70XBR2 70-Inch Rear-Projection HDTV
If you want a really big screen but need more versatility than a front projector can provide – especially in terms of light output for daytime viewing – then a rear-projection television is your best value. This 70-inch Sony SXRD model is one of the best on the market, capable of rendering a highly detailed 1080p image. The TV has numerous picture controls, including Sony’s Advanced Iris for improved contrast. It also has three HDMI inputs, a CableCARD slot with the TV Guide On Screen program guide, a floating-screen design with removable speakers and SRS TruSurround XT audio processing.
www.sonystyle.com, $5,500

Panasonic TH-65PX600U 65-Inch Plasma HDTV
If you wish to dazzle game-day visitors with a large-screen flat-panel, Panasonic’s 65-inch 1080p TV is an impressive performer that can create a rich, detailed high-definition image, day or night. It handles fast motion very well, and Panasonic has cut down on light reflection off the front glass panel, a common plasma concern when viewing content in a brighter room. This display features three HDMI inputs, a CableCARD slot with the TV Guide On Screen program guide and an SD Card slot for viewing photos. The tabletop stand and speakers are optional accessories.
www.panasonic.com, $10,000

Publisher’s Choice – Runco PlasmaWall XP-65DHD 65-Inch Plasma HD Monitor
If you want the ultimate luxury display, consider Runco’s 65-inch 1080p plasma. The company’s largest and highest-resolution plasma is also the world’s first THX-certified plasma, which tells you a little something about its image quality. The connection panel and ViVixII video processing actually reside in a separate box, the DHD controller, which you can place in your equipment rack. Connections include HDMI, component video and RGBHV inputs and one HDMI output that links the controller and plasma. The XP-65DHD lacks internal TV tuners, but it does include ISF (ccc) calibration modes, Runco’s VirtualWide aspect-ratio mode for 4:3 sources and RS-232 control.
www.runco.com, $19,995

Every great quarterback has a great team in front of him. Here are some other goodies you need to consider for your HDTV this fall:

Logitech Harmony 1000 Remote Control
Combining high-end functionality, easy set-up and an eye-catching tablet-style design, the Harmony 1000 remote control is a real crowd pleaser. Harmony’s Activities-based user interface has become the standard in remote design, and the great Web-oriented programming platform is both PC- and Mac-compatible. You can control up to 15 devices via a combination of hard buttons and a 3.5-inch color touch screen, and the motion-sensitive backlighting automatically illuminates the remote when you pick it up. Add the optional RF wireless extender ($150) to control equipment around the house, including automation products that use the wireless Z-Wave platform.
www.logitech.com, $500

DirecTV Plus HD DVR HR20
We’re convinced that both high-definition TV and digital video recording were originally conceived by sports fans, and the DirecTV Plus HD DVR lets DirecTV subscribers enjoy the best that both technologies have to offer. Record from 30 to 50 hours of HD programming (depending on the compression type: MPEG-2 or MPEG-4), watch one game while you record another, or simply enjoy the ability to pause live action and re-watch the game-winning kick to your heart’s content. The receiver includes two satellite and two ATSC over-the-air tuners, HDMI and component video outputs, an onscreen Caller ID function, and DirecTV’s Music Share feature for streaming music and photos from an Intel ViiV PC.
www.directv.com, $300

For cable subscribers dissatisfied with the HD DVR forced on them by their provider, TiVo recently made things very interesting with the introduction of a new HD DVR priced $500 less than their previous HD box. The new $300 model lacks THX certification and has a smaller hard drive than its predecessor (it can record 20 hours of HD, instead of 32), but it still offers two-tuner functionality – via CableCARD or over-the-air ATSC – to watch one show while recording another. Also, you get TiVo’s great interface and home-networking functions, including the ability to download movies and TV shows directly from Amazon.com.
www.tivo.com, $300

Toshiba HD-XA2 HD DVD Player
The HD-XA2 is the paramount HD DVD player on the market. In this second-generation player, Toshiba has fixed most of the ergonomic issues that frustrated users of the original HD-XA1, while adding much-desired 1080p output. High-quality HD DVD discs look outstanding, and the Silicon Optix Reon HQV processing chip does a great job of up-converting standard-definition DVD sources to 1080p. The thorough, forward-thinking connection panel includes HDMI 1.3, digital and analog audio outputs, an Ethernet port and RS-232. It may be the most expensive player in Toshiba’s line, but the HD-XA2 is worth every penny.
www.tacp.toshiba.com, $800

Sony PlayStation 3 Gaming Console
When the games are over, the football action doesn’t have to be. Just pop Madden NFL 08 or NCAA Football 08 (EA Sports) into your Sony Playstation 3 and enjoy the ultimate in graphics and game play. But the Playstation 3 is much more than just a gaming console. For one, it’s an excellent 1080p Blu-ray player, offering both HDMI 1.3 and interactive functionality. It’s also a multimedia center to store and play digital music, photos and videos, with wired and wireless Internet functionality. Sony recently lowered the price of the 60GB Playstation 3 to $499 and released a new $599 80GB Playstation 3.
www.us.playstation.com/PS3, $499

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