One benefit of buying a "monitor" and a separate standalone ATSC tuner is that if either the screen or the tuner goes bad, or if you want to upgrade either one later on, you can do so without having to pay for both!
I got this 42" TV/monitor back in November as an Open Item at Best Buy for $999. It was on display there, so I had the unusual opportunity to evaluate the exact model I would purchase =)
One of the key features to me was that it did NOT have an ATSC tuner that I would never use! I didn't want to pay an extra $100+ for a component I would never need. I get my TV signal from a Scientific Atlanta 8300HD cable box which outputs at 1080i just fine, and works as an HD DVR to boot. If a lack of tuner is the only reason you are holding back, just get a standalone ATSC tuner (google for standalone ATSC tuner), but really the only reason you need a tuner is if you plan to pickup TV signals off an antenna.
I've not evaluated the sound quality, as my sound is hooked up through an external amp/reciever/switch that outputs 5.1, so I don't even use the internal audio.
The 360 and Wii look great on it (especially with component cables), and since it's not a plasma screen, I never have to worry about burn-in from extended gameplay. I can read the text in high res games and the response time is great, i've never noticed it having any display lag that used to be a problem on LCDs several years ago.
A few minor caveats:
- Some people will probably not like the black level. This is an inherent problem with LCDs, but I've heard that newer, more expensive LCD screens mitigate this problem better than the Westy. If you're a videophile, you'll probably be bothered by this when watching a dark movie in a dark room. I noticed this at first after swtiching from a CRT, but it never bothered me, and now I don't notice it anymore. One of the "bright sides" to this is that it's an exceptionally bright screen, and performs well even when watched in a room illuminated with tons of sunlight (which plasmas have a problem with).
- It seems to require very precise pointing of the remote control to know you pushed a button on the remote. It's almost like the IR sensor is behind a tunnel or something. It's not much of a problem for me anymore since I only used the remote for turning it on/off and after enabling DMPS it turns itself on automatically when it gets a signal and off a minute after no longer getting one.
- I've seen some people complain in the AVS forums about the HDMI being a bit glitchy with some equipment (mostly the PS3), but I use component for everything (switched throught the receiver), so I've not had to deal with this.
These being the only flaws, I still think it's a bargain. At least at the time I did research back in November, this seemed like the sweet spot in the LCD HDTV market (the most bang for the buck), and I doubt it has changed much in the past few months.
PS: Discovery HD channel is awesome =)