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Windows 7: Full HD TV or Smart full HD TV

13 Jul 2014   #1
ICit2lol

Desk1 8 Pro / Desk2 7 Home Prem / Laptop 8.1 Pro all 64bit
 
 
Full HD TV or Smart full HD TV

My partner and I are looking to buy a 55" LED TV and have seen the hype about Smart TV's and have a rough idea what it is all about but looking at the difference in cost am wondering if the smart bit is worth worrying about.
I can still hook up the computers to the TV in any case and I am not that keen on paying for downloading stuff on a smart TV when Lynne has Foxtel in any case. We are planning to also buy a new blu ray recorder for what she has already.

So any thoughts on the choice please from anyone who has experience of the different types.


My System SpecsSystem Spec
13 Jul 2014   #2
dsperber

Windows 7 Pro x64 (1), Win7 Pro X64 (2)
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by ICit2lol View Post
My partner and I are looking to buy a 55" LED TV and have seen the hype about Smart TV's and have a rough idea what it is all about but looking at the difference in cost am wondering if the smart bit is worth worrying about.
I can still hook up the computers to the TV in any case and I am not that keen on paying for downloading stuff on a smart TV when Lynne has Foxtel in any case. We are planning to also buy a new blu ray recorder for what she has already.
I assume you mean "new BluRay PLAYER (not recorder)".

Anyway, virtually all higher-end TV's today from all manufacturers will be "smart", meaning they are bloated down with the full assortment of new "streaming apps" to obtain content either from the Internet or from your sources within your own home LAN network.

There's really no reason to have multiple duplicate "smart" devices, as the apps provided on all of these devices are essentially a full duplicate for the most part. Some differences which may be relevant depending on your needs and tastes, but essentially the same. For example, Amazon Prime Video has a deal with Sony, so its app shows up on Sony devices. But it doesn't have a deal with Oppo, so it doesn't show up on Oppo BluRay players.

So, do you "stream" or do you rent discs and play them on a player? Do you want to "stream"?

Also, big streamers like Netflix have so many users that here in the States they have issues with ISP's providing decent speeds to end-users, who have been complaining in droves about degraded performance. This has forced Netflix to agree to pay large fees to the ISP's (like Comcast) for "fast-lane" delivery technology (to the chagrin of many "net neutrality" zealots), which no doubt will eventually be passed on to consumers. Netflix streaming speeds depend on lots of things, including the imbedded or installed Netflix app in the particular hardware device or PC. The latest Netflix app version present on the Oppo 103/105 players provides extremely fast highest-possible delivery.


My own solution? I have an Oppo BDP-103 which is a superb BluRay player priced at $500 USD. Expensive, but superb. It has many "smart" apps but not Amazon Prime Video (which doesn't concern me), though I prefer to watch movies via BluRay discs (with superb sound) rented from Netflix (which I subscribe to) rather than stream via Netflix (which I also subscribe to, and do occasionally). Note that the Oppo (and most current generation players) can connect either wired or wireless to your home LAN, but I recommend wired for best streaming performance.

I have DISABLED "Smart Viera" apps feature on my Panny 65VT50 TV, preferring NEVER to be bothered with this functionality or Home Screen since I wouldn't ever use it.

The other real plus for the Oppo players is that they have two external HDMI inputs (which no other players do), which allows you to get all of the audio/video processing functionality of the player applied not only to playing BluRay discs and for streaming content, but also for external HDMI input (e.g. from your satellite/cable HDTV source). HDTV has never looked so terrific, as when "cleaned and processed and upconverted to 1080p" by the Oppo's QDEO/Marvell chips.

If using this approach for your satellite/cable HDTV, you should configure the source DVR/STB to deliver content as "native" (i.e. NOT changed from original source 720p or 1080i) to the Oppo. You do NOT want the source device to do anything to the original raw signal provided. You want everything to be done by the Oppo, which cleans, processes, and upconverts to 1080p for delivery to your HDTV screen (either directly via HDMI, or through your AVR). There are two separate HDMi outputs on the Oppo units, if you want to send video-only to your HDTV and separate DTS/LPCM audio-only to your AVR or sound system (although there are numerous configurations for both of the HDMI outputs).
My System SpecsSystem Spec
13 Jul 2014   #3
ICit2lol

Desk1 8 Pro / Desk2 7 Home Prem / Laptop 8.1 Pro all 64bit
 
 

Thanks for the detailed reply DS well we have a player / recorder >< TV at the moment and the current TV an 8 year old plasma is getting pretty unwatchable and the recorder aprt only takes an analogue signal. The Foxtel stuff is recorded to a Foxtel device and played back through the TV.

So all we want to do and just play bought DVD's recorded DVD's HD and Blu ray and record what we do now only we cannot play Blu ray now of course. We were thinking of something like this Panasonic DMR-BWT835 Blu ray Recorder with 1TB HDD - TV, Blu-ray & Home Theatre - Blu ray Players & Recorders | Harvey Norman Australia

or this DMR-XW390 Recorders - Panasonic Australia < this one is about $150 less than the first one at a different store.

Now what I am a bit confused about is that it states smart TV is able to do stuff from the net and use apps which I personally do not want to happen because it costs over and above the cost of Foxtel and plain running the thing. Lynne is into that app stuff and frankly I get rather bored with all that sort of stuff, and all I want is a decent quality screen picture and some decent sound of course while watching the TV on air broadcasts, DVD's and recorded programs.


If either of us want to use the screen for a laptop for example I think just a straight hook up would be fine - in any case that doesn't happen very often.
In essence are the smart TV's better than non smart TV's or is there no difference in quality just a function issue?
My System SpecsSystem Spec
13 Jul 2014   #4
Computer0304

Windows 7 Professional 32-bit/Windows 8 64-bit/Win7 Pro64-bit
 
 

I have on LG Google TV-enabled STB(Korea only), one Samsung Smart TV, and one Samsung Smart Blu-ray player and they just aren't for me. They are too slow and I have other better devices too anyway. I didn't even buy it for the Smart feature. I just bought it since it is a high end model. The slowness of the "Smart" OS part of the hardware does not affect the rest of the experience such as watching normal TV but if there were two similar models of a TV and one is "Smart" and the other is not, I would just get the cheaper one.
(Notice how a I quote "Smart")
Edit: Ugh, autocheck, here we go again. I thought I disabled you.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
13 Jul 2014   #5
Boozad

W7 Pro x64 SP1 / W8.1 Pro x64 / W10 Tech Preview x64 VM
 
 

I wouldn't be without my Samsung Smart TV, I love streaming form the PC to the TV without having a 15m ethernet cable running around the room. We do use the Smart services once in a while but it's rare, and if you can connect your TV to to your PC with a wired connection then I wouldn't bother with Smart John.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
13 Jul 2014   #6
dsperber

Windows 7 Pro x64 (1), Win7 Pro X64 (2)
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by ICit2lol View Post
Thanks for the detailed reply DS well we have a player / recorder >< TV at the moment and the current TV an 8 year old plasma is getting pretty unwatchable and the recorder aprt only takes an analogue signal. The Foxtel stuff is recorded to a Foxtel device and played back through the TV.

So all we want to do and just play bought DVD's recorded DVD's HD and Blu ray and record what we do now only we cannot play Blu ray now of course. We were thinking of something like this Panasonic DMR-BWT835 Blu ray Recorder with 1TB HDD - TV, Blu-ray & Home Theatre - Blu ray Players & Recorders | Harvey Norman Australia

or this DMR-XW390 Recorders - Panasonic Australia < this one is about $150 less than the first one at a different store.
From what I read, these are two very different devices. Both have DVR-like recording-to-hard drive capability with two HD tuners. but the first device also appears to have "archiving" ability to BluRay-recordable (like making an old analog VCR videotape, but to digital BluRay media instead).

At least I think that's what it can do since its description of "archive full HD images to BluRay or hard drive from SD flash card" has nothing at all to do with archiving to BluRay disc from a recorded HDTV program on hard drive. These are two separate functions and capabilities, with the writeup not mentioning "archive HDTV recordings to BluRay disc" which is of course the VCR-like capability I would love to have.

If I recall correctly, "the Industry Suits" here in the US have forbidden such a BluRay-recorder VCR-like-but-to-BluRay device to be sold here. They're terrified of copyright violations and piracy, of digitally perfect BluRay copies of copy-protected content, and such a device is too close to providing that capability.


Quote:
Now what I am a bit confused about is that it states smart TV is able to do stuff from the net and use apps which I personally do not want to happen because it costs over and above the cost of Foxtel and plain running the thing. Lynne is into that app stuff and frankly I get rather bored with all that sort of stuff, and all I want is a decent quality screen picture and some decent sound of course while watching the TV on air broadcasts, DVD's and recorded programs.
My own attitude is to buy what device I need, with hopefully no intentional overlap or duplication of function unless it's impossible to avoid. If you buy a high-end high-quality HDTV my guess is that you're not going to find one that is not also "smart" with Net apps provided. That's just "standard" today in any high-end equipment.

So just shop for what you want in quality and can afford, and disable or don't use those features which are duplicated on some other device in your setup... like the more expensive Panny player you mentioned, which includes Viera Connect (i.e. their suite of net apps, like the ones present on my Panny 65VT50 HDTV and which I've DISABLED in "setup" of the TV).


Quote:
In essence are the smart TV's better than non smart TV's or is there no difference in quality just a function issue?
Probably ZERO difference in HDTV/video quality, and Viera Connect or similar is present even on the low-end TV's and other devices like BluRay players, no matter what the price. Seems everybody wants these streamin net apps or YouTube or games or whatever, even though I just want to watch HDTV in best possible picture quality.

So again, forget trying to find a TV or player that doesn't have "smart" apps. They're just standard equipment now. Shop for the picture quality or player features you want and can afford, as if the "smart" functionality wasn't a cost factor at all.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
13 Jul 2014   #7
ICit2lol

Desk1 8 Pro / Desk2 7 Home Prem / Laptop 8.1 Pro all 64bit
 
 

Ok well at my place I have a Panny DMR Blu ray player / recorder that I use just for recording free to air and playing DVD's and Blu rays though a Sanyo 42" HD set.
That sort off set up suits me and I reckon as long as the TV has a good quality display and the disk player / recorder is a decent name brand I shall be happy - it is just I am not into those apps.

Lynne's Foxtel recorder does record the paid for stuff but I am thinking it would be good to have the extra device for recording the digital TV stuff out here and be able to play Blu rays. The cost is of some importance but I am not restricted to getting very cheap stuff as past experience with some of those generic brands have ended in grief and me getting named brands anyway.

So I shall get devices regardless of that smart stuff I just don't think we shall be using it. I shall go for the Panasonic stuff first as I like that brand and have had very little problems with their stuff before. Besides I don't want it to get so convoluted you need a degree in electronic engineering to work the things
My System SpecsSystem Spec
13 Jul 2014   #8
Indianatone

Windows 7 x64 and numerous virtual machines
 
 

John I have 2 computers I use for streaming and recording HDTV. I can record in HD from the over the air TV, watch blue rays in 1080 and also use the Computer to upconvert the 480 /575 DVD to 1080 too. Sound is fed from the sound card to the Yamaha Hi Fi amp and all is good. Stunning sound and Picture and the TV is basically dumb as the computer does the lot. So if you have a spare PC add a TV tuner a 2TB drive and a Blu ray and DVD burner and away you go. You will probably need Blu Ray software such as a player and even a ripper to archive your movies to hard drive. Windows 7 and 8 with the media centre can do everything except blu ray support.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
13 Jul 2014   #9
ICit2lol

Desk1 8 Pro / Desk2 7 Home Prem / Laptop 8.1 Pro all 64bit
 
 

Yep mate that is basically what I have set up but at Lynne's the set up is a little more convoluted due to the Foxtel gear and she is not real savvy with the setting up apart form having to wire it herself or get a techie in to do it. Plus ours is not using a computer. But I guess one day she will want to try it and that might cause a but of friction because I am not any of that inane social media stuff.
Both of us run the system though the stereo and yes it is a vast improvement over the TV set speakers eh?
My System SpecsSystem Spec
14 Jul 2014   #10
Lady Fitzgerald

Win 7 Ultimate 64 bit
 
 

One problem with "smart" TVs (and one of the two main reasons I don't ever want one; the other being using it over the internet can get expensive plus I'm boycotting Netflix) is they are easily hacked because there is no way to adequately secure them, unlike a computer. I would rather use a HDMI transmitter and receiver to "stream" from my computer to my TV. those are pretty much unhackable (and you would have to have someone really P.O.ed at you for them to want to go to the trouble to hack your one system, not to mention they would need an identical receiver and transmitter to do so).
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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 Full HD TV or Smart full HD TV




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