I have 3 Sony flat panels (2-40" and 1-32") that are excellent. My daughter has 40" Sony and a 32" Toshiba and has great success with both of them.
Good places to get deals on these brands are Sam's Club, Costco, and New Egg. I generally don't shop Wal Mart for these types things. Costco take the MFG. warranty to 2 years at no additional charge. Sam's Club has a 90-day return policy no questions asked. New Egg is tought to beat when they have a sale on. You usually get free shipping with no sales tax on top of great pricing.
If you buy the really low priced brands you are probably getting what you paid for. Shop on-line and read the reviews before you buy.