Of Holidays and Hollywood

As the holiday season kicks off, a report from dealnews.com suggests that Black Friday will see some insane TV deals—like 55-inch 1080p HDTVs going for $499. You should be able to get a 42-inch set, perhaps from a leading brand, at $189 or less, the report said. These are very brief, quantity-limited sales, of course, but it just shows you how competitive the TV business has gotten these days, and how prices have dropped on even the bigger screens. $500 for any 55-inch HDTV would have been unheard of even a year ago.

I’m not suggesting you buy a third-tier TV just because it’s on sale—far from it. But if you’ve been looking to upgrade to a larger screen, the holiday buying frenzy will likely see price pressure on TVs across the board until the Super Bowl in February. Watch the papers and Websites, be ready to act, and you could end up with a very good bargain indeed.

Good sales aren’t the only reason home theater and the holidays get along so well, though. During these times of family gatherings, we find that television programs, movies, and music are a constant presence. From the soundtracks of football games, holiday shows, and blockbusters on the big screen in the den to Pandora streaming Christmas crooners to the kitchen, the gear and technology we enjoy year in and year out act as a kind of sticky glue that pulls us together during this special time of year. We know—you can never get too much of a good thing, but please watch responsibly! And if you need recommendations of what to watch—or gifts to give—be sure to check out our movie reviews.

There are a few recently posted reviews worth calling attention to. Highlights include Vizio’s budget-minded E601i LED LCD, which, at $1,000 retail, is the least expensive good quality LCD we've seen at the 60-inch screen size. Pioneer’s second and improved iteration of its amazing $500 Andrew Jones–designed speaker package sets yet another standard for value. And GoldenEar’s new $1,000 SuperCinema 3D Array soundbar represents its own breakthrough of sorts for its surprising sound quality and spacious imaging.

From all of us at Home Theater, here’s wishing for a great start to your holiday shopping.

Billy's picture

Now let me see. Get up at 1AM, drive into town, wait for hours in line in the bitter cold, just to have some line crashers rush the doors at opening. Hmmm. Black Friday brings out the worst in human nature. I wish the stores would offer these prices for all customers, issue rain checks if need be and do it during normal store hours. The prices might not be quite as good, but good enough. Personaly, I have found good or even better prices a week before or a week after BF if you look hard enough, and no pnemonia or bruises required. Just another nail in the coffin of the local retail store, the internet looks better and better all the time.

David Vaughn's picture
Amen Billy! You couldn't pay me to go shopping on Black Friday. Isnt' worth the hassle.
dreamweaver2187's picture

Went out to stand in line at Sears Thursday night for their TV sales. I have to say, the only issue we had was some rain. People were all well behaved and for the bigger items like TVs they were actually selling what was in their warehouse, not on hand, so it was just wait in the cash register line, no bum rush to the pile of TV boxes.

cherishbeans's picture

Don't just settle for a cheaper price but poor in quality terms. I'd rather buy an expensive set of TV at least I know that it'll last longer and surpass it's warranty. mighty students.com