(August 29, 2010) The start of the football season traditionally marks the beginning of the TV selling season. With the economic slowdown continuing HDTV sales have not been up to set makers’ optimistic projections, resulting in swollen inventories. This is great news for consumers. Dealers are offering dramatic price drops aided by factory sponsored deals to try to get sales back on target.

Looking back at our 2009 selling season article, sale prices this year are 20%-25% lower than last year’s equivalent models, with the 2010s offering better performance (such as higher contrast ratios) and more features.

We have scoured Amazon, Best Buy’s latest circular and other retailers to find the most outstanding deals. We have also provided hot links to Amazon (most include free shipping too). Want to buy locally?  Use these deals to negotiate with your local retailer. To learn the secrets of how to get the best deal from a brick and mortar store, read our “Getting the Best Price” article (link).


With the growth of 2010 LED and plasma market share, traditional LCD HDTVs (with CCFL florescent light type backlights) have become the unwanted step-child of flat panel HDTVs. The result, big price drops from TV makers. You should be aware there are only two inherent advantages to LED (LCD) TVs over conventional LCDs (contrary to what some salesman may say). They are a thinner form factor and better power efficiency.  All other factors being equal, there is only one picture quality advantages to LCD available in a number of  high-end models, the ability to shut off the LEDs in regions of the panel called “local dimming”. This feature produces  blacker blacks, though due to the regional nature halos appear around light objects or text with a black background  (disclaimer, many product lines add additional features and better signal processing to their higher priced step-up LED models). HD Guru is all for energy savings, however please note for screen sizes below 40-inches, it can be quite negligible compared to the cost delta for going with the LED model.  Consider a LCD over an LED if you are desiring a flat panel in 40-inch or smaller size especially if you are planning to use the table stand (in lieu of wall mounting). Even if you are going to mount the TV on the wall, do you really care if the TV two or three inches thin rather than an inch and a half when saving hundreds of dollars?


Set makers have added lower cost 60Hz models to the mix. As noted above, conventional LCDs  are a better value.


Performance is up and prices are down. Plasma HDTV market share has risen as wise consumers realize plasma provides the best big screen picture quality, widest viewing angle and highest motion performance at low cost . Plasma panel makers (Panasonic, Samsung and LG) have aggressively dropped 720p and 1080p prices while increasing energy efficiency. If you are looking for a 42″ or larger HDTV, you should seriously consider plasma. Don’t believe salesman telling you they are old technology or they permanently burn-in. Not true, all LEDs are LCDs and they are the older tech. Burn-in is no longer an issue (and hasn’t been for a few years) thanks to the new, more energy efficient designs.   LEDs and LCD can be cranked to  brighter levels, which may fool you into thinking their higher price yields better image quality. Many stores ambient lighting levels are typically 5 to 10 times higher than most homes. Don’t be fooled. Plasmas are far brighter (3-5x) than the old tube type TV or rear projector you may be replacing.


The big news, prices are dropping and vendors are beginning to offer four pairs of 3D glasses with the purchase of a 3D TV and many are throwing in a 3D capable Blu-ray player. LG just started its free four pairs of glasses promotion (link) and industry sources tell us the other vendors plan similar promotions. Remember 3D capability includes the best 2D performance available today. (BB=Best Buy; JR =J&R)

Make/Model Size Was Now $ Savings Store Amazon Price
Sam/PN42C450 42″ $600 $499.99 $100 BB [amazonify]B0036WT3V6::text::::$497[/amazonify]
Sony/KDL40EX700 40″ $1400 $899.99 $500 BB [amazonify]B0035ER1JQ::text::::$807[/amazonify]
LG/55LD520 55″ $1900 $1499.99 $400 BB [amazonify]B0039RV03C::text::::$1298[/amazonify]
Sam/LN46C550 46″ $1050 $894.99 $155 JR [amazonify]B0036WT3QQ::text::::$816[/amazonify]
Pan/TCL37X2 37″ $680 $499.99 180 JR [amazonify]B0038KTAGO::text::::$490[/amazonify]
LG/32LD350 32″ $500 $399.99 $100 BB [amazonify]B0039RNGNY::text::::$358[/amazonify]
Sam/LN46C530 46″ $850 $799.99 $150 BB [amazonify]B0036EH16S::text::::$799[/amazonify]
Pan/TCP65S2 65″ $2800 $1999.99 $800 BB [amazonify]B00391Z89K::text::::$1897[/amazonify]
Pan/TCP58S2 58″ $1900 $1299.99 $600 BB [amazonify]B003924UA2::text::::$1226[/amazonify]

Packages (packages only available from “Store”) Amazon price for TV only (except LG 3D TVs)

Make/Model Size Was Now $ Savings Store Amazon Price
Pan/TCP50S2* 50″ $1550 $999.98 $550 BB [amazonify]B0036VO7WM::text::::$899[/amazonify]
Pan/TCP42S2** 42″ $1150 $799.98 $350 BB [amazonify]B0036VO70Y::text::::$678[/amazonify]
LG/47LE5400*** 47″ $2360 $1399.95 $960 BB [amazonify]B003BO4H56::text::::$1133[/amazonify]
LG/55LE5400**** 55″ $3160 $1999.95 $1160 BB [amazonify]B0039JBXVY::text::::$1124[/amazonify]
Sam/LN46C670***** 46″ $1500 $999.99 $500 BB [amazonify]B0036WT3RU::text::::$1050[/amazonify] (LN46C650)
LG/47LX6500 47″ $3820 $1748 $2071 Amazon [amazonify]B003BI6W0K::text::::$1748.98[/amazonify]
*with Panasonic DMPBD85 Blu ray player
**with Panasonic DMPBD85 Blu-ray player
***Package includes LG LHB355 Home Theater system + ANWF100 WiFi adapter + Geek Squad network setup
****with LG LHB355 Home Theater system + ANWF100 WiFi adapter + Geek Squad setup and network
*****Package includes Samsung BDC5500 Blu-ray player and $20 CinemaNow gift card

Buy the 47LX6500 3D LED TV and get LG 3D capable BX580 Blu-ray player  and four pair of LG S100 3D Glasses [amazonify]B003U6YOR6::text::::free[/amazonify] (offer good through Sept.11, 2010)

Make/Model Size Was Now $ Savings Store Amazon Price
LG/55LX6500 55″ $4720 $2019.00 $2701 Amazon [amazonify]B003BI3NB6::text::::$2019[/amazonify]

Buy the 55LX6500 3D LED TV and get LG 3D capable BX580 Blu-ray player  and four pair of LG S100 3D Glasses [amazonify]B003U6YOR6::text::::free[/amazonify] (offer good through Sept.11, 2010)

Make/Model Size Was Now $ Savings Store Amazon Price
Pan/TCP42G25 42″ $1370 $919.99 $450 JR [amazonify]B003924UBG::text::::$869[/amazonify]

Buy the TCPG25 and get the Panasonic TY-CC10W 720p Skype Video Camera free.

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