Plus ça Change

We’re moving to a new house at the end of the month. After fifteen years in one place, that’s necessitated some de-cluttering in preparation to pack and move.

One thing that’s not coming with us is my 60-inch Hitachi plasma TV.

It’s 13 years old, and still works fine. But that’s the thing about elderly electronics and major appliances: They work fine, right up until they don’t. There’s zero guarantee that it wouldn’t simply croak not long after being moved and re-installed in the new place. So we’re leaving it behind for the new homeowner, for as long as it lasts.

While de-cluttering, one thing that became apparent when looking at listings on Kijiji and Facebook Marketplace is that there are two things that are almost impossible to get someone to take off your hands, even for dirt cheap or even free: old sofas and old televisions.

Which brings me to the point I’m sanguine about, which is that televisions are a poor of store value, which should come as a surprise to none of you at this point.

When it was new, my Hitachi retailed for $10,000. I didn’t pay that, obviously, but at staff accommodation it was still a lot of money.

Today, flat panel televisions sell for much, much less.

Consequently, it’s hard for me to work up much enthusiasm to pay top dollar for a TV that boasts bleeding-edge technology today.

This time around, shopping for a new TV I was very pragmatic. I elected for the lowest price 75-inch Samsung that has Smart features (primarily for IP control compatibility for the remote control app I use).

Cost? $1,499 at retail. And free delivery.

Shopping around, I noted that it’s still possible to spend twice that for a 75-inch display, and the ones that are 85-inches or are larger are pricier still. But it was difficult to justify spending any more, when so little nets me a 20% bigger screen than I already had.

I’m sure that it’s a nice TV. It will look great on the wall. But am I excited about it?

Not really.

I don’t know if it says more about the industry in general or me in particular that buying a big new TV isn’t really a cause for celebration. It’s just one more thing on the check list for the new house.