Buying a new TV advice: Don’t make the same mistake I did

Home Technology Buying a new TV advice: Don’t make the same mistake I did
Buying a new TV advice: Don’t make the same mistake I did

It doesn’t take much to turn your humble living room TV from good to great.

It wasn’t long after I was feeling pretty chuffed with myself, again, for having a TV that was still getting the job done after 12 years, that it wasn’t any more.

It wasn’t a fond farewell, no dramatic puff of smoke, no teary dissipation of the figures on the screen, the old girl just wouldn’t turn on any more.

It had been a good ride and my wife and I had done so well to ignore the hypnotic pull of newfangled digital TVs every time we walked past Harvey Norman.

Every time we were over at the in-laws we were reminded of what we were missing out on when it came to watching sport or the latest drama on Foxtel.

So while we knew what we were missing, we didn’t care, our old 34 inch Sony was still going strong, the Roosters still looked good when they played and won more times than they lost on it, so I couldn’t complain.

But, nothing lasts forever right? Especially not anything within the reach of sticky four-year-old fingers with the compulsion to turn devices on and off and on and off ad nauseam.

And with death (or perhaps built-in obsolescence) comes with it the chance of new life.

And there was a lot riding on it, with the football season in full swing, a PlayStation5 on the way in the form of a seventh birthday present and a wife who loves TV’s crime offerings, and was determined now to enjoy them in all their glorious goriness.

So, it came to pass, I was in a position I hadn’t expected to be, I needed to find, and buy a new TV.

This was a strange new world, with all manner of acronyms being thrown around all willy-nilly and me, as the man of the house pretending I knew what it all meant. In reality I was as clueless as a South African with a piece of willow in my hands facing up to Shane Warne.

This is where I jump to the end, because nonlinear narration is all the rage at the moment – you would know that too if you had watched or half-watched as many movies and series on your new TV as I have.

After one mulligan – we had to take the first TV we chose back because it was too small because contemporary digital devices no longer need huge frames around them like they are priceless Van Goghs – we got the television we needed.

It ticked all the boxes, in terms of size, price and how it illustrates and enhances epic sporting contents, epic Fornite battles and prolific serial killers.

So in conclusion: know what you want your TV to do before you start looking, know your budget, know your size and if you do go in store to browse, ask as many questions as you need and ask the salesperson what TV he has and why. It will let you know if you’re on the right track or not.

In the end, we opted for a Samsung 55-inch UHD 4K Smart TV which retails for around $1200. But always try and negotiate the price. It’s a very competitive market.

And now apart from fights over who is going to play and watch what, we’re happy with our new TV.

Even our Golden Retriever Harry takes an interest in it from time to time.

But, but. but, I do wish we had had some expert guidance to help. Like Cosmo Kramer wondering just how far you can go on a tank of petrol I can’t help but wonder what else is out there.

What have I missed in the last 12 years.

That’s where TV guru, Hisense’s Chris Mayer comes in and after a good chat about everything television, this is what I gleaned I should have known before.


Black levels

A key battleground between TV manufacturers, black levels help to determine the picture quality or brightness of a TV. Computer monitors have low black levels and as such images can look grey or washed out on them. But as you move to a TV the images are more dynamic and as you go up the range TVs with greater black levels can separate the images more precisely and create more dynamic pictures.

Sports and gaming

This is where it gets serious, standard TV refreshes images at a rate of around 50-60 per second, UG8, refreshes at double that.

This means the sporting and gaming action looks much smoother.

“This is what motivates the sports lover,” Chris Mayer said.

“Once you go past U8G colours and the viewing experience becomes as real as it can possibly be.

If you want to get your on screen characters as close as Turingly possible to real life, you want an 8k TV. That’s as close as we are to Blade Runner or West World right now.

Video games too.

“Video games run faster than traditional TVs, so if you are really after that top shelf gaming experience, this is a strong consideration,” Mayer said.

At home cinema

For movie buffs, features such fuller ray dimming, which lights the entire screen can goes a long way to replicating the cinema experience.

“It’s similar if not better than cinema,” Mayer said.

For the full cinema experience Mayer suggests Hisense’s 120-inch Laser TV.


This could be the one non-negotiable for buyers and is what can really make the TV experience.

“All Hisense TVs feature auto sports mode, so when the viewer jumps across to the NRL, the TV knows you’re watching it, make everything move better,” Mayer said.

“It also widens the sound stage, the crowd feels more over here and here and here. It’s like there’s an orchestra in the background.”

“Don’t’ skimp on the sound.”

To enhance your sound experience consider investing in a sound bar or wireless subwoofer (we just wanted to use that word). They often a cheaper and more installation friendly alternative to a complete home theatre surround system and can sit subtlety on the benchtop in front of your TV or mounted to the wall behind.

Mayer recommends the Hisense 5.1.2 Ch Dolby Atmos 510W Soundbar.

The if money is no object TV!

If you’re really, really, really keen on having the best TV experience you can have and keen on being the go-to venue for the big sporting games and the big video games gaming, Mayer suggests the Hisense 75-inch U80G 8K ULED Smart TV, which sells for around $4500.

It might change your life.

Originally published as Buying a new TV advice: Don’t make the same mistake I did

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