Posted 29 January 2012 - 06:14 PM
Samsung actually makes very good TVs. BUT...
Several years ago (2006-7), there was an industry-wide shortage of capacitors, right about the time that sales of HDTVs had exploded due to price points dropping into the range of mass affordability. So, Samsung AND MOST OTHER MANUFACTURERS ended up substituting the unavailable 16V capacitors with 12V capacitors (on a 12V power supply board). Essentially, this made the power supplies into ticking time bombs, and as anyone could have predicted, there were LOTS of failures.
People who bought store-brand TVs mostly ended up just throwing them out and replacing them, while folks who bought name-brand TVs mostly had them repaired. In many cases, if the TV was more than 2 years old (i.e., more than a year out of warranty), the manufacturer wouldn't fix it, though. But because the problem is so widespread, LOTS of electronics techs started fixing these TVs, and there are dozens of YouTube videos showing you exactly how to fix your own. In most cases, you just need to order 2 or 4 of the proper capacitors (<$30) and spend less than 10 minutes with a soldering iron to replace them and make your TV good as new.
I'm not defending Samsung (or LG, or Sony, or Funai [most store brands like Dynex, Insignia, Sylvania, Emerson, etc.], or any of the other manufacturers who used incorrect capacitors when the correct ones weren't available), but that kind of practice is widespread in the consumer electronics industry. If you thought that the manufacturers would sit around and idle whole factories and miss out on the sale of hundreds of thousands of TV sets because some capacitors weren't available, and while all your competitors kept going, then you simply don't understand business.
I will also point out that every manufacturer of DLP TVs has had significant problems with their sets. Sony went as far as to replace 3-to-5-year-old DLPs with LCDs of equal value (based on the original DLP purchase price vs. the current, much lower LCD prices), making it a big win for the folks who had to suffer through those DLP issues.
Today, there are only 5 (consumer) TV brands that I would recommend:
Other common brands are clearly second-tier:
- Funai-made house brands (Dynex/Insignia/Sylvania/Emerson/Symphonic)
- Mitsubishi (I really debated putting this in the third tier)
Or third tier:
- All other "we licensed an old American CE company name from a dying company to put on our generic TVs" brands
- Chinese brands you've never heard of
Not only are the 1st Tier companies the only sources for the highest-quality components and the best/new technologies, but they also all have REAL support networks and supplies of parts to fix your stuff. 2nd and 3rd tier manufacturers are mostly done once your TV is out of warranty, as they generally don't have any significant inventory for repairs once their warranty obligations are complete (and with some brands, not even that long).
IMO, consider any 2nd or 3rd-tier TVs to be disposable if they break.
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