I posted this over on the Oregonian's Tech forum
on 11/28/04, and then decided it needed expansion.
1. Craigslist's electronics section
can be an excellent source for used HDTV gear, as videophiles will be trading up and selling their old gear. You can look on eBay
to get an idea of prices for comparable gear and what used equipment's market price is.
2. You can get HDTV
a) off the air with an antenna
b) with cable (Comcast, et al.)
c) with a dish (DirecTV
and DISH network
). Some of their receivers may not work with off-air or have all the features available for off-air use - so check carefully).
3. Sets (whether tube, projection, LCD or plasma) often do not have the receiver built in. Make sure you get a receiver in whatever you buy.
: There are Tivos and Tivo-like PVRs & DVRs to record HDTV, and you can get a DVHS (Digital VHS) recorder to give you the ability to record and keep or record and watch later. However, HDTV requires a *lot* more storage capacity, so HDTV DVRs record much less time when saving HDTV than when saving analog TV shows.
5. There are multiple modes of HD TV transmission, but 720p is the best looking, followed by 1080i. Other modes look no better, IMHO, than good analog TV.
6. Here are three Washington Post articles on HD TV you may find useful:
Guide to HDTV
HDTV somewhat explained
Transcript of an on-line chat with the reporter
And, remember; it's only television.