Terrible Reasons for Buying (or Not Buying) AV Gear – TV Edition (Part 1)

When people ask for buying advice, they often have very specific restrictions. And these restrictions are because of either things they’ve heard, beliefs they hold, or self-imposed limitations. Often, these restrictions cause them to buy (or not buy) AV gear (like a TV or display) that would have been perfect for them. So, in no particular order, here are some of the most terrible reasons people have given us for buying AV gear, TV edition (part one of at least two).

Terrible Reason #1: Can’t Get a TV Because of a Picture

Imagine this: You have a wall. On that wall is a picture. That picture is in a place that you and your significant other likes. Now also imagine that you want to put a TV on that wall. You calculate the correct size screen for your seating distance and…Oh no! It won’t fit! It’ll cover the picture! Time to get a smaller TV!

We were going to put it on the wall…but there was a picture and a lamp so we had to shove it in a corner.

Umm…are you kidding right now? Of terrible reasons not to buy a TV, a nail has to be one of the worst! Sure, maybe that picture (or plant or whatever) is in a great place. Maybe it is perfected centered on something. But we are talking about moving a nail. This isn’t a big deal. And yet, nearly daily, this is given as a reason for buying a too-small TV.

What do you spend more time looking at? The TV or that picture? If it is the picture, you should take a picture of it and make it the wallpaper of your phone, computer, and tablet. And then move it off that spot and get the bigger TV.

Terrible Reason #2: Buying a TV Because it is One Size Bigger

Ten years ago someone bought a TV. It was top of the line at the time. Cost them a pretty penny too! And it was one of the largest on the market. A whopping 55″. But it is showing its age and they’ve decided to upgrade. What do they do? They head out to the big-box store and look for a TV that is one size bigger.

It’s bigger than our old TV at least…

No, they don’t look at their room. No, they don’t examine how far away they are sitting. Instead, they just get the next size up. If this isn’t a terrible reason to buy a TV, we don’t know what is.

Your TV should give you a similar experience to being in a movie theater. This means a field of view of a similar size. Calculating the right size might be very individual, but it isn’t hard. We can’t tell you how many homes we’ve been in that have a TV far too small for the seating distance. If you can’t read the text on the bottom of the news feed, you aren’t just a little too far away. You are WAY too far away!

Terrible Reason #3: Limiting TV Size Based on Existing Furniture

Holy moly, we see this one a lot. Someone bought an entertainment center a couple of decades ago. It perfectly fit the 36″ CRT they had back then. But now they want a flat panel display and it doesn’t fit. Do they consider getting rid of the furniture? No! They want some sort of mount that will allow them to continue to use every aspect of the furniture while getting the largest flat panel they can.

It doesn’t work.

Sure, that looks natural…

First, the flat panel will be too small. CRT displays had different aspect ratios than current flat panel displays. This will give you less screen than your old CRT. Plus, the opening isn’t the right size.

The real solution for this terrible reason is to buy a new TV stand. There are plenty on the market of all kinds of styles. If you are really in love with what you already have, you could modify it. What you really want is a large, flat surface to place your flat panel. If you have an old entertainment unit, it means cutting off all the stuff to the right, left, and above the old TV. You may need to hire a carpenter (which will likely cost more than just replacing the thing), but it will work. We’ve seen it done.

Terrible Reason #4: Fitting a Screen to a Wall

This is something that happens with home theater projector owners often. They listen to others online that crow about how great it is to have a massive projection screen. So they measure their wall, figure out the biggest screen that will fit, and order it. This is a mistake.

If you’ve ever sat in the first row of a movie theater, you know that an image can be too big. The last thing you want in your home is a screen that is so large that it makes you nauseated during action scenes. You certainly don’t want a screen so large that your projector can’t get bright enough to display HDR adequately. Sure, the screen may physically fit, but it may make watching it nearly impossible. Get the right-sized screen. Not the biggest one possible

Wrap Up

This is part one of terrible reasons to buy (or not) a TV. We have at least one more coming. Have you made a mistake when shopping for a display? What do you wish you knew before you bought? Let us know in the comments and we might include it in the next installment!

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