Help buying a television

My girlfriend and I will be moving to a new house, and the room for the TV is much larger than in our current setup. She loves football (yes, some guys do get lucky), so the NFL via DirecTV will be the primary focus. We'll be about 12 feet from the screen. From what I've been reading a 50- or 55-inch screen would be about right for that distance. Also, I've read that plasma is still thought of as best for sports.
Do these bits of information seem correct? Anything else we should consider? Recommendations -- including brands -- would be greatly appreciated.
FYI: I posted this under "Home Theater" because that made the most sense. That said, this will be a set on the wall, not a real home theater.
Thanks so much for your help.

-- Howard
Way too small. Try this link:
50-58" is fine for your purposes and the Samsung Plasmas & LED models are incredible for the price & hard to beat by any company.
Congrats on the house and the gf. My wife is also a big sports fan and its great not to have that as a source of friction. At 12' I'd get 60"if you can afford it but would go for a better set rather than a bigger screen if you need to make a trade-off. Check out AVS Forum to get the best technical info on PQ. Any satellite system can be a problem if you live in an area w heavy snow or rain. I'd say that plasma is still the best bet for PQ on sports, but I've never seen LED. LCD is (to my eyes) not acceptable for sports and black levels still not up to plasma's standard. If you can swing it, and if you can still find any around, the Pioneer Elite 60" Kuro is probably your best bet. Just my $0.02.
I agree with the Swampwalker. I would get a Pioneer Elite.

LED/LCD screens are cheaper and that means cheaper parts. Get a warranty.
After looking at my sisters Samsung LCD, and my mothers panasonic plasma.....I went with a panasonic plasma.

They both looked very nice compared to my old RPTV, but I thought the plasma had the edge in picture quality for tv viewing, and DVD viewing.

I sit about 9' from my 50" plasma and often wish it were bigger, but then I am greedy...

LG 55 LH-90 series - get the biggest screen you can afford. This TV is an ACL with LED backlighting,(probably the cheapest LED screen on the market too even the review says its expensive) meaning it illuminates incredibly well and uses almost no energy at all - plus its a great looking unit. After doing the rounds, I finally got this one and football is GREAT on it!

ALSO - Of the ones I evaluated, most tv's had a glossy screen EXCEPT Sony and LG units. In a fully darkened room,like the store's showroom, they ALL look nice right?.

BUT if for example you watch in the daytime and have windows facing it, you will see whatever great picture you have on your tv PLUS the window reflections. Same thing at night if there is a lamp that faces the screen.

I sold my last TV because of this - so - no matter how great a new Samsung may be - daytime watching is a bummer with windows reflecting through it. Sonys and LG's do not have this problem as they have a satin-matte screen, at least not when I shopped 2 months ago.

Last thing - the LG series (like other LG series I think) has the ISF fine adjustments on one of the available presets - this goes much farther than most tv's in getting fine-tuning on every parameters, including most i never heard about. I got sample isf settings from a website and used these parameters on the LG isf settings - and here you are - professionnal-calibration you can try yourself.

When you consider the beautiful picture, LED lighting, ISF calibration, low power usage, AND digital OUTPUT for sound (I was told this is somewhat rare), this LG was a no brainer.

This review says, ''poor angle performance'', I don't know, works perfectly in our home.

Good luck !;lst;2
Yeah, the ambient light levels in the room matter. If it is bright just when the best sports are on, Plasma is the way to go.

At 12 feet, 50" is just fine. Ever since Panasonic bought out NEC, this is the way to go.
I have a 50" plasma at about 9', which is the recommended distance. I think you would want at least 60" if you are 12' away - do a google search and look up recommended viewing distances. At any rate, as big as you can afford. I can't believe how much difference there is - so much easier on the eyes.

And yes, plasma is WAY better than LCD for sports or movies - they have much better blacks, which makes all the color better.
If you can control the ambient light in the room. A front
projector is another avenue.No panel can match the immersion
you would get from a 100 inch screen. At 12 feet, a 100
inch screen would be exciting! I agree with others about the
size. 50 inches is much too small at 12 ft viewing
distances. Once you become accustom to it..there's no going
back to the little 50 inchers for serious viewing,whether
plasma or LED/LCD!

You could easily do it for the cost of some of the TVs
mentioned here..maybe less in some cases.

Good luck
I ran across a contrarian view when I was TV shopping a couple of years ago: the CAO (Canadian Association of Optometrists) recommends a viewing distance of 5 times the width of the picture -- which means something like a 32 or 37 inch screen for a 12 foot viewing distance!
Plasma is Still King. Good luck trying to find a Pioneer Elite Kuro. There are good alternatives though. The latest LCDs such as the Samsung 8500 have very good PQ. Personally though I still much prefer a plasma picture.
Two suggestions: Go atleast 58" or better yet 65". The Panasonic Viera is a great set- I would take plasma over LCD (block smearing and unnatural flesh tones).
Kuro is a desirable model, but the current Panasonics are very very good (go for middle tier version- I think it goes like G, S and V?)
i fully concur with the go-for-plasma rec--it's still the superior technolgy, esp. for sports viewing. panasonics have excellent pictures, but i (and some of my cronies) have had problems with their reliability, so i've been touting samsung. these black friday-type sites like dealnews and brad's deals scan the internet on a constant basis for deals--you'll see some really great (albeit short-lived) prices on big plasmas from reputable retailers like dell, sears, etc.
Yes, I have plasma (50" NEC) in the living room...and projection in my 25' addition up stairs.

My wife and I do cuddle downstairs...when I am not upstairs with my projector.

Healthy(?)...don't ask.
Agree with plasma I have a Samsung 63" viewing distance about 12 feet screen size perfect for us.
Good luck
Run a 58in LCD for daytime crap (and Plasma if you can afford it) and ON TOP OF THAT get a nice Projector for serious sports and movies if you can control the light.
You can get a killer 1080P Panasonoc 4000, Epson 8500UB and others for $2000.
Like another wise poster said earlier there is nothing like a game on a big ass screen! It can be doen far cheaper than many assume these days.
My dad does 59in Panasonic Plasma for daytime and a 106in screen for movies and sports, I have only a Projector in my room but dad and mom use their basement for most all relaxing......................GO BIG!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
I just went to help a friend purchase a large screen, and we settled on the LG. I was surprised frankly, but for the money it was a great value.
One thing you may consider is the new RGBY, with yellow added to the RGB mix. IT IS IN A WORD, INCREDIBLE.
Just look, then let us know your impressions.