i've spent a great deal of time researching a prospective HDTV. i've narrowed it down to 2: the 40" samsung UN40ES6580 ($830) or the 42" panasonic TC-L42ET5 ($700). originally i wasn't going to get any other brand besides samsung, but after looking at the specs for some panasonic HDTV's, i leaned stronger towards panasonic. both sets are LED HDTV's, both have wireless internet access, both have 3D. panasonic is cheaper, but not by much (about $100). price was a selling point but not a major factor. i don't i'll be watching too much 3D content, but i liked that panasonic uses passive 3D which can be watched using simple polarizer glasses, while samsung employs active 3D which requires expensive powered glasses. i liked that the panasonic was just a few inches bigger, since i couldn't decide between 40" or 46" (46" would be just too big for the living room). a major selling point was the panasonic HDTV would be fully compatible with my panasonic camera. the built-in USB media player supports AVCHD and MOV, as well as 3D MPO files; i wasn't sure if the samsung could read MPO's (some places said yes, while others said no). the samsung 6580 does come with an additional webcam (for HDTV skyping) but i didn't think that was important to pay the extra amount (the cheaper [$780] samsung 6500 is the exact same HDTV but minus the webcam and with a fewer pairs of active 3D glasses).
my HDTV research was also helped by the march 2013 issue of consumer report magazine that featured a whole section on HDTV's. both the panasonic and samsung had the same score, with the samsung scoring better in the audio but weaker in the 3D while the panasonic had better 3D but weaker audio.
in the afternoon my mother and i went out to do some shopping. i drove because i knew the directions. my mother hadn't been in a car where i was driving for probably close to a decade, simply because both my parents think i'm a terrible driver. i was out to prove her wrong, and the fact that she rode without complaint meant i passed, at least for today. our first stop was the watertown best buy, where i wanted to see the difference between samsung and panasonic. it's hard to gauge the difference though, because they also had plasmas as well as LED HDTV's, and i always suspicious that they purposely amp the quality on the more expensive sets hoping to sell more of the pricier televisions. i did see a panasonic ET5 but in a 55" model. it was next to 2 samsung LED's, the top of the line 7100 and 8000 series, which were much brighter. the panasonic in comparison was okay, but just not that bright. it was hard to judge and i left without really learning anything.
next we went to the waltham ocean state job lot, where my mother was returning a shirt she bought. i was hoping to find some basil seeds because the reason why i didn't get any the last time was because they surprisingly don't have any. i'll have to go to home depot at some point to get some for my indoor grow house. i ended up getting some claeys' old fashioned sassafras candy ($1), a cultivating claw tool ($3), spool of hemp twine ($1.30), a 34 oz. box of risotto rice ($3.50), some pears soap ($3), and a simple wire fence ($3) for my front yard (keep the dogs out).
we stopped by a subway's to get a teriyaki chicken sandwich before heading back home. by that point my sister had already left with hailey to the dog party. since we had a sandwich, by dinner we weren't particularly hungry and ate some leftover swedish meatball pasta.
my neighbors across the street returned my old bread machine last night, probably because it didn't work. however, by this morning, the bread machine was once again gone from the sidewalk. maybe someone can figure out how to use it.
finished with my research, i finally decided on the 42" panasonic TC-L42ET5 and ordered it through amazon. it seems only fitting that i should replace one panasonic with another panasonic, sort of keeping the spirit alive. i finished off the evening with episodes of the walking dead and red widow. even if my new HDTV were to get here by the end of this week, it's still probably going to take me until the following week to finally get HD cable since i still need to book an appointment with comcast.