So I’ve been wanting to upgrade the tv in the family room to an HDTV for some time now.I was ecstatic a couple weeks back when my wife gave me the green light to start seriously shopping for a new tv. The family room is right next to our kitchen and is only separated by a half wall. It’s also the room where we tend to do most of our tv viewing. Previously I had a 32″ inch SD CRT Panasonic that served us well for the last 10 years. Now the room isn’t terribly huge and the couch is about 8 feet from the tv. Based on the that a 40-42 inch tv was in the size range I was shopping for. The price range I was looking to hit was around $700-$750. After taking a look at a lot of online reviews and talking to several people I narrowed the choices down to the Samsung LN40B550 LCD and the Panasonic TC-P42S1 plasma. Both are really nice TVs. While some people are really opposed to plasma tvs because the they consume slightly more power than their LCD counterparts. Honestly the power consumption difference is pretty negligible. The plasma would of consumed about $15 more electricity in the course of the year than a similarly sized LCD. I showed my wife both tvs and she liked the LCD a little bit more. The picture on the LCDs tend to look better in bright rooms than plasmas. The color tones on the plasmas look a bit more natural to me, less washed out. The family room is a fairly bright room so the LCD was more of an appropriate choice. The thing that sealed the deal for me was the Samsung had more input connections. Definitely a nice thing to have considering I have 3 devices that use HDMI (cable box, Zotac Ion MythTV frontend, HD-DVD player). Oh I also paid $682 at 6th Avenue Electronics. So far I love this tv. It looks great with any HD content I’ve thrown at it. The blacks especially look very good for an LCD. I had zero issues with my Zotac Ion box connected via HDMI. No overscan whatsover and the default Mythbuntu theme looks absolutely killer on it. The handful of HD-DVDs I own simply look amazing (Transformers, 300, Bladerunner). The upscaled standard definition DVDs look pretty good too. I highly recommend the Samsung line of LCDs.