sweet spot ... 26-32in band
That IS a surprise. Most people I know would consider anything less than 40 inches to be TOO small.
British homes may be generally smaller than those of, say, the US or Australia, but the nation's TV buyers are nonetheless increasingly keen on bigger and bigger tellies. UK TV sales fall into two broad categories: small and large. It's not hard to understand why. We buy small sets for bedrooms, bigger ones for the living room …
Probably because we're all buying more TVs per house. When I was a kid, my parents had one TV in the livingroom and that was it. We currently have three TVs, only one of which is really large in our livingroom, the others being bedroom and spare room sets and so in the 26-32in range. Having said that, I also watch TV on one of my PCs in the study with a smaller 21in monitor.
That "sweet" spot does seem a little low for flat screens, certainly for a main tv but I suppose it depends on the size of your room. But generally tv size is something you get used to. Growing up I've had several tvs, starting with a 14 inch main living room tv. Each one seemed tiny after using the replacement, but fine while using it.
As someone else pointed out, the switch from 4:3 to widescreen did have an impact. Widescreen tvs need to be a lot larger to be horizontally as high. Which means if im used to a large 4:3 tv I'll end up getting an even larger widescreen one as it will feel small if I don't.
I have a 40 inch tv at the moment, and I've moved recently, in the new location the tv feels a lot smaller, so I'll probably replace it soon with a 50 inch or more, chances are that even from the same manufacturer it will be cheaper, lighter, thinner, better quality and have more features. Why wouldn't I get one as large as I can afford, that fits in the space?
Additionally, as tvs rarely die, the old one will get shifted to my bedroom/hobbyroom
The more features and the bigger a tv is the less it is used as a tv. If I bought a monster all singing and dancing tv, I'd never get the opportunity to watch it. Hence my basic flat screen 32" Sony keeps the wailing masses away and allows me to watch Great Railway Journeys in peace and without disturbance.
The cost difference in the 22 to 27 inch range is negligible. Costs under 21 compared to 21 are not worth it and the costs above 27 have come down multiple times. This leads to the expected result - each household gets an enormous ugly idiot box as the centerpiece of the living room.
I am tempted to extradite mine out into the "family room" just for sake of being contrarian. I got _NO_ TV in the living room in my summer house (everything revolves around the fireplace) and it is lovely so the idea is not so bad after all :))
Fully agree. The size of the TV should be chosen for the size of the living room. Buynig one just because it's 40" or whatever is being a bit a size queen. I say living room because I believe that unless you have a dedicated TV room then that's the only place you should have a TV.
My bet is that it's due to the cost of TVs dropping so much over the years. The fact that LCD TVs take up much less space in a room also means it's more practical to have a large screen TV in a room, without it eating up half the floor space.
More screen, for less money, and less space. Bit of a no brainer, really.
If the 2007 market was 1M sets and the 2011 market was 300K then the percentages are just stats.
Only one person I know has bought a TV in the last 12 months and that was a Sony 3D because he is a technophone. Everyone else is far too skint to even think about buying a new set.
I have actually bought 4 tvs in the last year....
one was for our daughters room to replace a ageing 12inch CRT set, it was replaced with a 19inch LCD, a bigger set would have only been fractionaly more expensive, but space wise and viewing distance, 19inch is fine...
we got a 42 inch Toshiba 3d tv with 3d Bluray player for a bargain price of £500 with 8 pairs of 3d glasses.. the only interest I had in the 3d tv is the fact that in general they perform better at normal 1080p HD and the particular model came with a colour analyser, picture & colour quality is perfect (also, as it goes, sports in 3d is excellent!!) . We also got 2 sharp 32 inch TVs for the same room as the 3d TV.... it is our "living room" but in reality is is the Bar of our Guest house. as it can get quite full and guests like to watch TV, so to keep everyone happy tv's had to be added !!
I think the consumers have no choice - last time I looked, if you wanted decent features (freeviewHD, HD ready display, DNLA or smartTV, etc etc you can only get those on the bigger panels.
(there again, even bigger panels are missing vital features.... and I think they should have brought in a law to ensure that any HD TV sets that offer Freeview reception should have FreeviewHD receivers)
Not always. We wanted a second set that could double as a PC monitor. Friend put me up to a deal that comet had for mobile payments giving %15 off the list price. Trawled their website for the cheapest TV they had and paid via mobile for not too much dosh. Was mightily surprised to find it had a USB slot *and* TIVO (if you put a usb stick in there). It would also play media from the USB. Speakers were rubbish (remedied with PC speakers) but the panel looked ok. That was a 24" set I think.
The living room has a 37" sharp, I was happy with a 32 but when I bought it the prices were pretty much the same so I measured up the spaces and it was still ok.
There is the aspect ratio, the old 21" CRT was square, the same viewing height in a panel looks like 32" now. How tall the picture is is more important than the diagonal. We bought a 50" 3D plasma to replace a 42" LCD. We are happy, the 2D is outstanding, the 3D sort of works, it is best on sporting events. Next time it will be plasma, unless the LED people deliver on those thin things with spectacular color which they have been promising.
Do you have any research you could point us at to back up this delightfully Daily Fail bit of social comment?
As for the generalisation that large TV sets are vulgar, well, I suppose one will just have to manage with the Pioneer 436SXE (43 inch) in one's master bedroom and the Pioneer Kuro 508XD (50 inch) in one's lounge.
I don't know about the UK, but I volunteered in a program which does taxes for free for low income households during my last year of undergrad. Guess where the US Earned Income Tax Credit often ends up going. Seriously, more than a few of them brag about what they're going to do with the money, and this is one of the top choices. Meanwhile, I just pirate everything I want to see online and have a tuner card in my PC for the occasional over-the-air sports coverage. If you're poor, you probably can't afford a nice house or an awesome car, but dammit, you can usually scrounge up enough for a top-of-the-line flat panel to distract you from the depressing realities of your (often multiple) dead-end job(s).
Drive out of your area after dark and notice the glow coming from your neighbours windows.
Do the same in some poorer areas and get ready to put your sunglasses on.
It doesnt mean to say that all those tellys are top line though, many will be trading features for size and will bear the 'HD ready' tag that most Reg readers would shun
Its true unfortunately, the poorer people buy big TV's, its not a cost thing, since I would probably spend twice as much a top of the range 32" LED than they spend on their 50-60" TV.
And this is just by experience, the poorer people I know, have TV's too big for their room, the richer people, are more restrictive with tv size, it is less important, but if they do get a big TV, it doesn't fill the room, and costs way more as they go for quality as well as size..
It's all very well people buying larger sets for the same money, but some of the panels on the cheap larger TV's are terrible. You are better off getting the best panel you can get for your budget, not the biggest size.
Let alone the abominations that have image processing that turn a 24fps film image into 100fps making everything look like a cheap TV studio production. I want to see the image as the director intended, not the manufacturer!
First new living room TV I bought was
1986 - 26" , CRT, RRP £900 and filled the space of one armchair.
1999 - 32" , CRT, RRP £1000 and filled the space of one armchair
2008 - 50" RRP £1100 and hangs on the wall.
so you get a larger screen for same money.
1990 - Bedroom 14" CRT £150 took up a sideboard
2009 - Bedroom 22" TFT £130
all large ones Panasonic, Pioneer or Phillips.
no benefits here.
but yes certain types of buyers find the money for the tv first.
My parents purchased a 42" a few years back. Now they think it looks too small in the space it occupies. I have a 50" myself and I could always do with bigger. 100" would not be too big. I would get projection if it was not so expensive to run, noisy and does not work too well during the daytime hours unless you black out the windows..
I'm very surprised. I finally replaced my old Ferguson 21" CRT from the mid 90's with a 51" Samsung Plasma and I just assumed that was just what everyone had these days. Maybe because I was overestimated how large friends' televisions were when comparing them to my old set or something. I barely watch TV and thought I was just catching up with the times, not being ahead of the curve.
Is what it mostly comes down to. Personally I go for comfortable viewing so a 32" in the living room, 23" in the study, and 19" in the bedrooms are perfect for me, anything larger would just be superfluous. So many people have ridiculously oversized TV's just for the sake of it, for most living rooms in the uk anything over 32-36" just makes for relatively uncomfortable viewing, where you can't take in the whole image without moving your head around or having large parts of the image outside you optimal viewing angles etc. As a well known stand-up comedian put it recently "if you've got a television that's 40 inches or bigger and live in a normal sized house or flat you're either a chav or have major insecurities!".
About 7 years ago I found myself switching.. now I buy big TVs for the bedroom and smaller ones for the living room, 46" and 32" respectively. Maybe it's because I'm English and live in the US...
What amazes me though is the price changes. I got to cash in on an extended warranty for an $800 no-name 32" 720p LCD only a few months before it was due to expire. The store gave me $800 in credit because the TV no longer exists and I drove home with a 40" 1080p Sony Bravia. That was 3 years ago, god knows what I'd get for the same money now.
I had a 25" full height tv until is expired last week. To get the same picture height on a low height screen I would need a 32" set (approximately - just use Pythagoras). But instead of the screen being at the front of a deep CRT it will be 18" to 2' further back on or near the wall. so to get the same viewing angle it will need to be bigger still. The next step is 37" diagonal.
Of course all this "widescreen" hype is just a con to get people to buy new sets (plus is saves channels the cost of scanning cinema films). Most of the time you are watching one person speaking, singing or playing, or at the moment watching a tennis court from one end. The acres of space at each side are just wasted. A so-called "widescreen" set gives you a much smaller picture than a full height screen of the same diagonal size.
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