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When is the best time to buy a TV?

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(Read caption) An employee walks past TV sets at Yamada Denki LABI electric shop at Tokyo's Shimbashi district in 2010. November is still considered the best time for TV deals, writes Louis Ramirez.

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Welcome to another Ask an Editor column, in which our knowledgeable DealNews staffers answer your questions about shopping, saving, and making the most of your hard-earned dollars. Check out our latest inquiry, and then read the details below about how you can submit a question of your own!

Question: When should I get a new TV? I am not in a rush, I can wait up to 6 months. It has to be 40" and super cheap. Doesn't have to be name brand. I can buy it from online or in store in the US.? -Alex

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Response From Our Features Writer, Louis Ramirez:

November is without a doubt the best time of the year for TV deals. If you're in the market for a new TV, we specifically recommend you shop during the days leading up to Black Friday. While most retailers will entice you with deals on large 55" sets, it's still possible to find blockbuster deals on smaller 40" sets. And the best part is that most, if not all, of the blockbuster TV deals you see in-store will also be available online with free shipping.

For the past three consecutive years, November has been the month to beat for 40" to 42" TV deals. Moreover, November prices have steadily dropped each year, with last year showing an impressive year-over-year decline of 33%. As far as actual prices are concerned, you can expect to see off-brand HDTVs in this size category hit $118 or less on the week of Black Friday. (Name-brand models will comfortably hit under the $300 mark).

Unfortunately, there's a downside to buying a new TV during Black Friday season. At the start of January, the entire tech industry convenes in Las Vegas for the annual Consumer Electronics Show. At the show, TV manufacturers like SamsungPanasonic, and LG debut their TV lineups for the new year. While many of those TVs won't hit retail shelves until much later in the year, they automatically date any TV purchase you may have made in November.

But it's not as bad as it sounds. Generally speaking, any tech you buy today will be outdated quickly. Also, TV technology doesn't change dramatically year to year (unlike, for example, smartphone processors). So even though your TV may be outdated by January, the manufacturer will still support it, and chances are it'll boast many of the same features as the newer models.

Note: This article is part of a series where we respond directly to reader questions about products and deals. Got a question about what computer you should buy, when to book a flight to Asia, or something else? Send it to us at letters@dealnews.com.

This article first appeared on DealNews.


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