Wednesday, October 10, 2007

Picking the Right Size Flat Panel

From the desk of Lee Distad's Professional Opinion:

Talking with clients, friends and family about their prospective flat panel purchases, I’ve come to realize that most people seriously underestimate what size screen would work best in a given environment.

What people shopping for a new flat panel typically don’t take into account is that with a flat panel, there is zero footprint into the space of the room, unlike the old days of CRT Rear Projection where a 50-inch screen was two-and-a-half feet deep. Combine the lack of depth with the reduced minimum viewing distance (owning to the greater level of resolution and clarity that new sets deliver), and you can wrangle a much bigger screen into your den or living room than you could 10 years ago. Add falling prices, and bigger panels are accessible to a broader range of customers than ever before.

Since last spring, the catchphrase in the industry has been: “Fifty is the new 42.” Okay, I admit that I started it, but everyone I speak with in the ‘biz’ agrees with me. Fifty-inch panels are the new default main room television, with 42-inch sets basically being a bedroom or small condo size television now.

Really, the only limiting factors in flat panel size selection are logistics: having the set be able to fit lengthwise and height wise on the wall with regard to millwork, art, and anything else that shares wall space with the set. Oh, and budget. How much television your clients can choose to buy is also a factor; but I consider that a minor detail, since the majority of the retailers who read this site are pretty upscale.

I’m not saying that you should strong-arm your clients into buying a bigger set than they thought they wanted. But make sure you do the job that a consultative salesperson should: show them what their options are, and open their minds to the possibilities. I suspect that when you do that, they’ll agree with you, and order bigger panels. Mark my words, by next spring, the catchphrase will be: “Sixty is the new 50.” (For more of Lee Distad's Professional Opinions)

1 comment:

Marketnews - Christine Persaud said...


I'd argue the point that "most of the retailers that read this site are upscale". We have retail readers of every ilk!

As for screen sizes, if you're alluding to the high-end custom retail crowd, I think 60 has been the new 50 for some time now. But you are right: that may spill into the mainstream crowd more quickly than we think!