Entertainment components :
-Hitachi 55" LCD Projection HDTV (55VS69)
-Samsung Up-Conversion DVD Player (DVD-1080P7)
-Verizon FiOS TV (HD Set Top Box)
-Onkyo 5.1 Channel Home Theater System (HT-SR600)
-Z-line Designs 55" TV Stand (LUXOR55S)
Additional components: (already owned & wishlist)
- Slingbox Tuner to watch TV anywhere in the world using my laptop /mobile
along with airtunes which I will use as a wireless bridge to be able to watch tv from my Mac in my office (already owned)
-AppleTV sync movies from my itunes library on Mac in office to TV (wishlist)
-Apple Airtunes stream my itune's mp3 collection on Mac in office to receiver and enable slingbox to stream cable TV to my other computers(wishlist)
Bestbuy's initial visit was pleasant as it helped me narrow my search initally by the type of system ( 5.1 channel system, 2.1 channel system, digital sound projectors) but what about 7.1 channel systems? so even though this made it easier to narrow it down it left out one entire category out. Circuit city didnt have this to begin with but it gave you different categories to narrow it down (systems with or without dvd, price, brand) where best buy just listed all the systems starting with the most expensive of course (and giving you no option to sort by price) and then in no specific order either. Best Buy also lacked a "compare" feature. Circuit city went a step ahead and included customer ratings on each listing which gave me a good idea even before clicking for more info. It also provided customer reviews which best buy lacks too.. this was very helpful in choosing the dvd and surround sound, even though I still used google to find other reviews this was a good start. circuit city's detailed view also offered much more information it felt like than best buy and even simple things like "email a friend"
this is a tough one since I never made it into a bestbuy store since most of my research was online, but their customer service is ok at best most of the time the staff at either store wont know much so I do all my research online before stepping in. I picked up the tv at the circuit city store and the person knew the basic stuff but since I knew what I wanted, it didnt leave much space for him to upsell me on another tv that I didnt need. I came in, pointed at it and bought it.
Product selection and Price:
I felt like bestbuy only had a few brands to choose from while circuit city had 12 and when narrowed down to audio system only gave me 4 brands in the type of system I was looking for where bestbuy had 11 different brands but all mixed in... Getting the best deal is also important to me so once I knew what I wanted I searched on that item for the best price. I used sites like pricegrabber.com and google's product search. This time around circuit city had the best deals around not only for the tv but also for dvd and surround sound.
i couldnt wait to get these hooked up but I needed cables and I highly recomend you never buy cables at the stores..the markups are crazy I used http://www.newegg.com/ for all my wiring needs
I bought 2 optical cables and 2 HDMI cables for about $30 delivered in 2 days where I probably would've spent that on one cable at the store..
I have pretty much everything setup, the only thing remaining is buying speaker stands and brackets for the back speakers..and picking up the airtunes.. and then Ill be ready to melt on the couch for a few days...