We have nothing against cheaper HDTVs. Vizio, for example, makes consistently low-priced and well-performing flatscreens. But when a salesperson (or sale) points you in the direction of a TV brand you've never heard of, do some digging. Because house brands can be a horrible investment. The number of HDMI inputs is often prohibitively low, and with the Insignia set that we've tried (a Best Buy house brand), one of the two HDMI inputs suddenly stopped working with certain devices, such as a PlayStation 3. The durability of these bargain-bin sets is generally low, and where it really counts – HD picture quality – they almost always fall short. There are diamonds in the rough, no doubt, but with great deals to be found on older TVs from established brands, why bother?
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