54 total posts
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Best Buy knows no shame.
Along with several other big box stores, they consistently try to up-sell customers with criminally overpriced accessories and service plans. I can't begin to tell you how many people I know who have been duped by these sales pitches. 100 dollar HDMI cables and 300 dollar surge protectors are not necessary when you can get perfectly good alternatives for 10 and 50 dollars respectively from places like monoprice.com or amazon. A good surge protector is always a nice little insurance policy but 300 dollar versions are not necessary.
You can probably get that TV cheaper online if you really want to. If I were you I'd go back and tell the manager that they lost a sale because of this salesperson's sleazy tactics. Sadly, I'm not sure they'll care. Overpriced cables and accessories are that store's bread and butter.
I would love to go back to Best Buy and tell them that they lost a sale because of a shady salesman, and just purchase one online, but there is a problem with that...I want to utilize their "no interest for 3 years" deal they have going on right now. I just bought a house, and I get my 8000 dollar tax credit next year, so I have no monies right now >_>
Well just buy the cables and the surge protector from
Amazon and skip the extended warranties.
I agree with Pepe that calibration might help you get the best possible picture out of the plasma but I'm not sure if the Geek Squad is the best qualified to do the job (nor am I sure that they are the best deal).
Out of pure curiosity, what did you read regarding calibration that made you go against it(?)
On the C-Net forums, titled How Critical is Calibration
Under that thread, everybody pretty much said they felt cheated out of 300 dollars, and either didn't notice a difference, or liked it before the calibration better. That, and I was already skeptical about a 300 calibration to start with. And now that I found the thread here about people posting their calibration settings, I cant imagine spending 300 dollars on one
What you might do is...
...break you HDTV in for a few months, then go observer a properly calibrated model in dark room. Heck, even use a favorite DVD of your choice. The sales people in a typical Magnolia store will be happy to oblige. I'd be very surprised if you did not notice the difference. Searching through comments on forums can be quite useful, but it's definitely no substitute for making the comparison in person.
Good to know. Oh! That reminds me, I have seen several mentions to "breaking in" my new plasma. What exactly does that mean. What exactly should I do to break in my TV for the first 100-200 hours?
Keep the brightness and contrast reasonable
Don't crank either one and you should be fine.
If you look in the user manual, there should be specifics in there as well <nudge, nudge, wink, wink>.
Cheap surge protector cuts down life of a TV
So a 2 cm part inside the Monster Cable will stop what three miles of sky could not? So its hundreds of joules will absorb surges that are hundreds of thousands of joules. That is what the salesman (and others here) claimed.
So where is the numeric spec that says it does any such protection? Of course he pointed to each spec number to prove you needed it? No. He also forgot to mention is can increase potential for surge damage. A protector too close to appliances and too far from earth ground can even give that surge more paths to find earth destructively via the TV.
In every location where damage cannot happen, the protector is as close to earth ground as is possible. And, to increase that protection, separation between protector and appliances is increased.
No protector does what others (ie that retail salesmen) claim. No protector blocks surges as the topmost damning questions expose. That is a $3 power strip with some ten cent protector parts selling for $25 or $300. Power strip protectors are profit centers. Do not even claim protection in numeric specs.
Protection is always about where energy dissipates. A sentence that will be repeated constantly because you must dispose of 'power strip' myths. No protector is protection. Reread that sentence three times because you did not know immediately a salesman was promoting a scam. Protection is only about where energy dissipates. And effective protector only connects that energy to the only thing that provides surge protection. No - no protector is protection. Protection is where energy dissipates - single point earth ground.
All appliances contain massive protection internally. Your only concern is the rare surge (maybe once every seven years) that might overwhelm protection in some (any) appliance. That means energy dissipates harmlessly in earth. Or you permit energy to hunt for earth ground destructively via household appliances.
It is your choice. Either you install one 'whole house' protector with earthing upgraded to meet and exceed post 1990 code. Or that energy will hunt for earth destructively inside the house.
The effective solution is about $1 per protected appliance. A surge that does not enter the building - that is harmlessly absorbed in earth - well ... protection is always about where energy dissipates. And only you make that decision. Only you are responsible for upgrading or enhancing single point earth ground. And the 'whole house' protector is not required by code. Only you can install it or have it installed.
Effective protectors do not have names such as APC, Tripplite, Belkin, or Monster Cable. $3 power strip with ten cent parts selling for how much? Effective protectors come from Siemens, Intermatic, Leviton, Square D, Keison, and General Electric. An effective Cutler-Hammer sells in Lowes and Home Depot for less than $50.
You need a 'whole house' protector to even protect plug-in protectors. Where does that energy dissipate? Where does that power strip?s numeric specs claim any protection? Oh. It does not. It is a profit center promoted by that retail salesman and others here who never asked those topmost damning questions. A protector is only as effective as its earth ground.
Well, I have to say that is the first time I have ever heard anybody give the opinion that Surge Protectors are evil, and can cause more damage than they help.
I appreciate hearing your opinion, thank you for taking the time to write it
Do you ask damning questions?
I never said surge protectors are crap. Not even close. Where does energy dissipiate? Essential to asking damning questions.
I said a protector connects energy to protection. No protection (ie plug-in protectors) means a profit center. But protectors for over 100 years have been effective. Even harmlessly earth direct lightning strikes. Effective when one learns what was done even 100 years ago. Ignore retail salesmen and junk scientists.
You are asking for protection. Posted was an executive summary. Simple layman stuff. And only for AC mains. Just enough so that you would ask damning questions. Any incoming wire that is not integrated into that protection 'system' means protection is compromised.
Earth ? not a protector ? provides protection. Scam artists must avoid reality to sell profit centers. Which protector is part of a protection system? Which is ineffective? You did not even ask which earthing provides protection and which earthing can make damage easier. That is why retail salesmen and myth purveyors can so easily twist your thinking.
The concept is not difficult. Ben Franklin demonstrated same in 1752. A fundamental concept taught in grammar school science and that gets forgotten when buying a $300 'magic box'.
Meanwhile, Monster Cable?s specs ? where does it even claim any protection? Honest people do not view sales brochures. Where do its specifications even claim protection? It doesn?t. A $3 power strip with expensive paint and ten cent protector parts sells for how much? Another damning question.
Hope I don't sound like a jerk here...
w_Tom, you really seem to know your stuff when it comes to this, and I do not want to sound like I don't appreciate your posts, because I do, but for the life of me I cannot figure out half of what you are saying. Maybe its the fact that I'm reading this always right after work or right when I wake up, the two times I am absolutely drained @_@
"Earth ? not a protector ? provides protection" - Really got confused here. I have never been good with electrical systems and ratings. It was always my weakest point in science class.
Anywho, here is my return question to you:
You keep saying you want to be shown where it claims protection. What, in a surge protector, could be listed to make you say "That will do its job, and is worth the price". Is it the energy absorption/dissipation rating? Is it how it "cleans" the power? The clamping voltage?
Again, please excuse any ignorance on my part. I am not good with, never have been, which is the very reason why I am here.
Surge Protectors are not evil.
They are better than nothing at all, in reality the more of them have thought your house the better you are protected.
A good surge power strip is around $15~25, that little inexpensive part inside gives up it's life when hit with big surge, the strip should be replaced if this happens.
The whole house is a nice concept, but if you live in an apartment you don't have that option, use multiple power strips!
Lots of great information is being tossed about here, and I am very appreciative of it, but my primary question, the biggest reason I posted here, really has not been answered.
Can the "dirty" power from an unprotected line potentially cut down the life of my TV from 20ish years, to 3ish years.
I have already decided to get a surge protector, and the hunt for my best option is on. But I was truly shocked at such a statement, and was just curious if anybody really could back it up.
Do you really think some 22 year old guy working the floor
at Best Buy, who has been coached to up-sell customers as much as possible by management, is a reliable source of information? If you ask a caqr salesman a questio he will tell you exactly what you want to hear. 20 year lifespan knocked down to 3 because of "dirty power"? If it sounds like BS, and it looks like BS, it probably is BS. If this truly was some huge problem don;t you think it would be plastered across numerous A/V sites?
> Can the "dirty" power from an unprotected line potentially cut
> down the life of my TV from 20ish years, to 3ish years.
Surge protectors protect against a power SURGE, not dirty power. (Actually, that should be noisy power, not dirty power.) A surge protector will protect against lightning strikes, and that's about it.
Question: since so few people get surge protectors for their big-screen TVs, if their life was only 3-5 years wouldn't we be hearing about it?
BS from Best Buy...but
I would still get some sort of surge protector. If it were me, I'd get a UPS with ~1500VA to protect your nice, but fragile new plasma TV. A couple people here (myself included) bought the Cyberpower 1500AVRLCD ( http://www.amazon.com/Cyberpower-CP1500AVRLCD-UPS-Display-8-Outlet/dp/B000FBK3QK/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&s=electronics&qid=1268344079&sr=8-1 )
It is pretty darn cheap for what you get and you can rest easy knowing your plasma TV (and other connected components) will be safe from power surges, brown-outs, and give you plenty of time to properly power them down during a power outage.
Some TVs really need ample cooling down time when you turn them off to cool down the internal components and if the power goes out and that cooling fan cannot do its job, you could be looking at overheating of critical parts.
Show me the numeric specs from that UPS that lists each type of surge and protection from that surge. A UPS connects the TV directly to AC mains when not in battery backup mode. Where is the protection?
It claims near zero protection from transients already made irrelevant by what is inside TVs, dimmer switches, and clock radios. That is 100% protection in sales brochures. That subjective claim means a majority knows UPSes do surge protection. No, it does not.
A damning question. Show me. Show me those numeric spec numbers that claim protection. And I will show you why so many are told what to believe. Why propaganda is so effective.
Listed was the only protection that works - as it has done for over 100 years. That UPS does not even claim effective surge protection. Its only purpose: to protect unsaved data. Temporary (and very dirty) power to not lose a TV show if AC mains go down.
When will a TV most often see surges? 270 volt spikes from a 120 volt UPS when in battery backup mode. Where is the protection? Its already inside the TV. Protection that can be overwhelmed if not earthing a 'whole house' protector. That UPS for surge protection is a ... show me the numbers.
UPS surge protection
The actual specs for surge protection in mid-range UPS's like the one I linked to are not extremely high (kJ rating, I mean), but they usually are sufficient enough to handle the typical power hiccups due to outages and brown-outs. I get alot of brown-outs where I live during the summers and my UPS performed well when they would happen. There were no split-second gaps between when the brown-out happened and when the UPS battery kicked in...or when a full outage happened and the UPS kicked in providing power.
You can't ignore the importance of giving your HDTV ample time to complete its power down cycle when an outage happens. You really should give your HDTV time to run its cooling fans for however long it needs after you tell it to power down, which a UPS will allow.
Destructive power off - another myth.
> You can't ignore the importance of giving your HDTV ample time to complete its power down cycle when an outage happens
More BS from retail salesmen and hearsay. A 22 year old promoted to 'expert' because sales propaganda works.
If true, a poster lists each component damaged by power off - and why it fails. I would never post as he did without supporting 'reasons why'. No 'reasons why' says 'power off damage' is 100% myth.
1) Routine is for all electronic components to operate, unharmed, at all voltages from 0 to maximum. 2) Long before PCs existed, international design standards required just that - no damage. A chart in one international standard is blunt, in all capital letters, for all low voltages: "No Damage Region". Two 'reasons why' and an example; verses zero provided by that myth.
To an HDTV, power off by pressing its power button, by yanking the power cord from the wall, or via a state wide blackout (to every electronic component) is same. No electronics inside a TV are 'warned' of power off. Normal power off means all electronics suffer low voltage for a long time as power slowly fades away. How many here actually design? A tiny minority who also provide 'reasons why'.
A 22 year old retail salesman without any college education tells so many what to believe? A perfect example of why propaganda is so successful. Too many believe; forget to ask damning questions. Forget to always demand 'reasons why with numbers'. Believe a majority rather then the minority who first learn why - with numbers.
A majority are educated too often by a 22 year old retail salesman. A reality also defined by minimalist in "Do you really think some 22 year old guy working the floor". Same propaganda that promotes plug-in protectors (ie Monster or Tripplite) with obscene profit margins; that do not even claim surge protection.
Hey, I understood that one! Thanks a lot Tom, that post was very helpful
Can "dirty" power from ...
> Can the "dirty" power from an unprotected line potentially cut down the life of my TV from 20ish years, to 3ish years.
That was answered in layman terms:
> All appliances contain massive protection internally. Your only concern is the rare surge
> (maybe once every seven years) that might overwhelm protection in some (any) appliance.
> That means energy dissipates harmlessly in earth. Or you permit energy to hunt for earth
> ground destructively via household appliances. [ie that TV]
A plug-in protector gives energy more potentially destructive paths to earth via an adjacent appliance. Or simpler: a plug-in protector gives surges even more ways to damage that TV.
A surge too small to overwhelm protection inside a TV can destroy the undersized protector. Did the protector protect anything? No, of course not. But grossly undersizing gets a majority to recommend scam protetors. The TV had to protect itself. The protector failed - as its numeric specs said it might.
Where does that Tripplite claim any protection? A protector ciruit from inside a Monster protector is also inside that Tripplite. And similar numeric specs. Do you feel - or do you judge based only in facts? That means numbers. Where does Tripplite claim protection from each type of surge? It doesn't. Same protector circuit also sells in for $7 in grocery stores. Why not spend ten times less money for the same protection? A $3 power strip with some ten cent protector parts selling for $70 or $95? Where is a fact - the number - that justifies that?
What makes a good protector? We are not there yet. You are still using feelings rather than answer the question I again ask - because you do not answer it. Where does energy dissipate?
It says it will absorb how many joules? Again, not rhetorical. Why do you not answer these critical questons? How does Tripplite absorb surges that are hundreds of thousands of joules? The next reply answers that question in scary pictures. Demonstrates what the Tripplite protector may do. Demonstrates that Tripplite need protection provided by a 'whole hosue' protector.
Alternate Technology Surge Protection
I've been searching for effective surge protection. Had my computer system "protected" by an APC SurgeArrest, and it failed (my computer was fried). APC refused to repair or replace, which means that APC lies when they print on their packaging that they will repair or replace your equipment which their surge-stopping equipment fails to protect. NEVER will buy APC again.
I'm considering this: http://www.zerosurge.com/ . They claim their equipment has NEVER failed to protect attached devices - and the lifespan of their units is 10 years. I have not found any documentation on the web describing any failures of these. Customers include the military, hospitals, and other critical apps.
Is this too good to be true? I'd be more than happy to spend $160 for a surge protector that will work effectively for 10 years, rather than $20 each year for a plastic box of receptacles containing sprigs of garlic (keeps the evil surges at bay!) which may or may not protect my equipment (and whose manufacturer refuses to honor their guarantees).
I would think one of these Zero Surge units plugged into the wall, with a UPS plugged into it, with my equipment plugged into the UPS, would be a valid setup providing maximum protection. For protecting any type of electrical equipment - TVs, computers, and whatever.
Alternative Technology - or repeatedly posted facts?
> Had my computer system "protected" by an APC SurgeArrest, and it failed (my computer was fried). APC refused to repair or replace, ...
And again, that is exactly what the numeric specs said it would do AND what the warranty covered. What do numeric specs from Zerosurge claim? You really have no valid question if not asking about the numbers. What numbers are you asking about?
Or, how does it stop what three miles of sky could not. Again, where did you start by viewing spec numbers. And again, where does energy dissipate? These are layman level questions. Why are these numbers so difficult?
Protection is always about where energy dissipates. Either that energy dissipated harmlessly in earth. Or it is inside the building hunting for earth destructively via appliances. That was posted here often. And that exactly answers your Zerosurge question.
And then we add additional facts. See that safety ground wire? The surge uses that wire to completely bypass the Zerosurge filter. Or did they forget to mention that part? No. They told you what it would do in numeric specs. Or you learned what was well understood even 100 years ago. And so it is repeated again.
**** Protection is always about where energy dissipates. Either energy dissipates harmlessly outside a building. Or energy inside hunts for earth ground - destructively - via appliances. A protector is only as effective as its earth ground. ****
Where does Zerosurge discuss that earthing? Where are the spec numbers that list each type of surge and protection from that surge.
Zerosurge and other series mode filters are just that. Filters. Good supplemental protection for EMI/RFI/EMC and other noise problems. Please. How does it stop what three miles of sky could not? At what point do you grasp that simple concept?
Well at least is does not do what the APC protector does - make damage to electronics easier. Either you spend $hundreds per protected appliance for the Zerosurge - that does not even claim that protection. Or you install what has routinely worked for over 100 years ... for $1 per protected appliance. More numbers that were posted previously (and must be reposted again?).
View numbers. That APC did what its numeric specs said it would do. Posted was a well proven (100 plus years) solution that costs tens or 100 times less money ? earthing a ?whole house? protector.
W_Tom Like Copy/Paste. Refuses To Read Or Learn.
"And again, that is exactly what the numeric specs said it would do AND what the warranty covered"
No. Incorrect. The APC SurgeArrest did not protect my equipment. Their guarantee states that they will repair or replace any equipment which their SurgeArrest fails to protect. They failed to honor their guarantee. What is it you do not understand about this?
"What do numeric specs from Zerosurge claim?"
Among other things, the numeric specs from Zero Surge state that their technology has been proven to withstand over 1000 surges of 6000 volts and 3000 amps. Can you read this and comprehend? Their product handles 1000 or more occurrences of 6000 volts/3000 amps. It will NOT burn up or explode. It will NOT wear out in a year or two.
"Either that energy dissipated harmlessly in earth. Or it is inside the building hunting for earth destructively via appliances. That was posted here often. And that exactly answers your Zerosurge question."
Wrong again, W_Tom. They do NOT route the surge to ground. It does NOT travel on the ground wiring over to other appliances or equipment and fry those, too. You haven't read anything about their technology, have you? C'mon, admit it. You're just being lazy and performing multiple iterations of copy/paste here on a Saturday.
"The surge uses that wire to completely bypass the Zerosurge filter. Or did they forget to mention that part? No. They told you what it would do in numeric specs. Or you learned what was well understood even 100 years ago. And so it is repeated again."
Wrong again, W_Tom. You are becoming less and less credible. The only thing around here that is being repeated again and again is your rant about 100 year-old technology and how it doesn't provide good protection. If you possessed reading comprehension skills, you would know that Zero Surge does NOT use the 100 year-old technology. They use technology they developed in 2006. 4-year old technology!
"Protection is always about where energy dissipates. Either energy dissipates harmlessly outside a building. Or energy inside hunts for earth ground - destructively - via appliances. A protector is only as effective as its earth ground."
Not anymore. Go read about them. You are wrong. You must be an old dog, right? You might want to learn about something new here. If you can.
Yawwwn. "That APC did what its numeric specs said it would do."
Wrong again, W_Tom. The APC device did NOT dissipate the surge adequately to protect my equipment. The power supply and motherboard in my trash can are proof enough of that! And the APC device itself did NOT experience blown circuitry or any damage.
What it FAILED to do was protect my computer from a surge. And APC lies when they state that they will repair or replace any device which is connected properly to an APC Surgearrest surge protector and fails due to a surge. There is no gray area here. My equipment suffered a failure while properly connected to their SurgeArrest device.
Now, go read about Zero Surge and come back here after you have re-educated yourself.
What I wrote and your read are 100% different
The reason for damage is because that is what APC specs claim. Those APC specs do not claim to provide surge protection. You had damage because that APC protector did what its specs say. That is what I wrote previously and what you did not read.
You are confusing safety ground (the third prong in a wall receptacle) with earth ground. Those are different grounds for a long list of reasons. Why did the APC have no earth ground? Among so many reasons, because that APC does not connect 'less than 10 feet' to single point earth ground.
Why does APC not even discuss earth ground? Because it does not claim effective protection. APC, like all plug-in protectors, does not have a dedicated and essential wire to connect short to earth ground. I said that before - repeatedly. Apparently you did not comprehend what was written ? and then further defined in numbers.
Why are you are accusing me of saying a complete opposite of what I wrote? You said, "The APC device did NOT dissipate the surge adequately to protect my equipment." I wrote the exact same thing. Except I also put numbers to that reality. See those APC spec numbers? APC does not claim to dissipate a destructive surge. Your computer was damaged because an APC protector did what APC said it would do.
You said, "What it FAILED to do was protect my computer from a surge." I posted that APC specs say it will not effectively protect your computer. Why do you accuse me of saying something 100% differently?
The APC protected your computer as its numeric specs said it would. APC does not claim effective surge protection in its numeric spec sheets. APC knows most who recommend their products only listen to myths and hearsay. Will ignore facts and numbers that even say why the APC can make computer damage easier. You also demonstrated something else I have long noted. APC will not honor a warranty that is chock full of exemptions. For at least a decade, APC routinely does not honor that warranty. On that we also agree.
I posted facts and numbers that completely ***agree*** with what you experienced. Even APC's specs ? which I noted repeatedly - do not claim to effectively protect your computer. That APC with no earth ground earthed a surge destructively through a computer - as defined by APC spec numbers.
Regardless of the price you pay, any protection is better than none at all. The ultimate protection would be to use a small UPS. This unit would provide the surge protection and also provide "brown out" protection. It acts as a power conditioner but a small unit would provide the protection you seek without needing to buy a bigger unit to power the unit for extended periods during power loss. The most important part regardless of which you buy is that the unit be properly grounded, either at the outlet or by providing a seperate ground from a cold water pipe or from the incoming line directly. Have a licenced electrician check out your home and the outlets you intend on using to determine what you rally need to provide the best and most economical installation.
Learn facts **before** recommending
> Regardless of the price you pay, any protection is better than none at all. The ultimate protection would be to use a small UPS.
A typical UPS connects an appliance directly to AC mains when not in battery backup mode. How does that relay 'magically' stop surges? UPS manufacturer does not claim what mjd420nova has posted. Worse, UPS has some of the tiniest joules in specs sheets? Did he forget to read spec numbers? How does that UPS 'magically' work when its numbers are worse than a power strip protector? How does that UPS get recommended when its own spec numbers says it is worse?
More numbers: a surge is done in microseconds. Relays take millisecond to react. How does that relay stop 300 consecutive surges? It doesn't. After 300 consecutive surges, the relay is still closed - conducting a destructive surge into the appliance.
How does that relay's few millimeters open gap stop what three miles of sky could not? It doesn't. Just another reason why that UPS manufacturer's numbers do not claim protection.
A majority believe what propaganda order them to believe. Never ask even one damning question. Just let eyes glaze over and worship what propaganda dictates? A UPS provides near zero surge protection. Its (maybe) 345 joules just enough above zero so the sales brochure says "Surge protection" is capital letters. It must be true. A sales brochure says so? Yes, that is what a majority do.
Scary how many know what even the manufacturer will not claim. As posted previously, an adjacent UPS may even generate a potentially destructive 270 volt spike into a 120 volt appliance. Why did mjd420nova ignore that previously posted number. Ignore manufacturer published facts and numbers? Only knowledge based in 'feelings' or hearsay would explain that UPS recommendation. That is what so many have done here. Know without first learning facts.
Demonstrated above are scary pictures of protector too close to appliances and too far from earth ground. mjd420nova should first learn. View those pictures and the fire marshal who says why plug-in protectors may even threaten human life. Learn the facts BEFORE making recommendations.