Utterly shameful. According to a Consumerist reader, Best Buy sells its already sketchy $300 HDTV calibration service by putting two HDTVs next to one another: a "calibrated" HDTV and a "non-calibrated" one, both showing ESPN. The scam? The non-calibrated HDTV is actually just pumping out standard-def ESPN, which had also been set to stretch the picture out. The Consumerist' comments is filled with other gems of Best Buy deception, including the fact that cheaper televisions are set up for display with RCA cables, while the more expensive televisions are fitted with HDMI.
This is just outright deception. There's certainly some calibration fiddling that can go down when you buy a new HDTV, but for 99% of all people, it will display just fine out of the box, with the pre-programmed picture settings being perfectly sufficient for most people (including me). If not, a $10 calibration DVD will do you. Granted, there's a certain sort of person who gives their money to Geek Squad — I will charitably call them "idiots" — and I sometimes wonder when the U.N. is going to confiscate Antarctica from the King Penguins and gift it back to them as their Holy Land. But this still makes my blood boil.
How can Best Buy possibly think this is going to fly? If it really took $300 to make your expensive new television not look like smegma-smeared pixel ass, you wouldn't be worrying about calibration... you'd be worrying about filing a class-action lawsuit.
Best Buy uses tricks to sell calibration services [Consumerist]