This past holiday season, we purchased a High Definiton LCD TV. After seeing prices drop from $10,000 a few years ago to $1000 we decided the time had come for us to try HDTV. We paid about $1100 for a 37″ LCD HDTV. We’ve been quite happy with the quality and resolution of the TV. We enjoyed it so much that we opted to sign up for additional HDTV channels by signing up with a satellite provider. I initially thought that $1100 was pretty much all that I would spend on the TV but I should have suspected that this, like every other piece of electronic equipment I’ve purchased, would have some cascading expenses that I had not considered.

First, if you don’t have a built in decoder on your TV then you’ll need to purchase one. Cost $300+

Second, you will need to purchase a series of cables to get “optimum” performance on your TV. Cost $40-$300

Third, you will need to pay an additional fee for HDTV converter box to your cable/satellite provider. Cost $10+/month

Fourth, if you own an XBox or Playstation, you will need to purchase additional cables to hook them up to the TV. Cost $50

Fifth, you’ll likely not want to watch anything other than HDTV broadcasting so you’ll sign up for more channels with satellite or cable company. Cost $30+/month

Sixth, you’ll need to purchase some rabbit ears to pick up those additional “hidden” channles that stations broadcast. Cost $20

I’m sure there are other expense to come in the future. We can’t record HDTV broadcasts on our VCR so it’ll only be a matter of time for an HDTV VCR to come out. We do have the option of using DVR on our receivers but this also requires and additional monthly fee.

If you see an HDTV advertised for $499 out there (I’ve seen a few recently) be forewarned that this is only the beginning of some cascading expense you’ll incurr over the course of owning an HDTV.