Slim projection (or DLP ?) bigscreens

What you see is what you get, including photography, displays, and video equipment.

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Postposted on Mon Dec 03, 2007 1:14 pm

I've read a lot about what Vrock saying to be true about out-of-box settings. They tune these things to look good next to their neighbors in a store isle under fluorescent lighting. A lot of the better ones have good home-use profiles already in them, but others you need to tune yourself when you bring it home. Apparently the settings are extremely stressful on the hardware, too.
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Postposted on Mon Dec 03, 2007 1:29 pm

Flying Fox wrote:
Vrock wrote:Personally I think the CEMs do this on purpose because they know lots of flat panel buyers are sports fans, and they try to tailor their greens to stand out to attract these folk's attention. Ugh.
Sports can mean hockey, basketball, car racing, etc.. Then the green doesn't really matter?
Football. People buy these things for football, especially around Superbowl time.
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Postposted on Mon Dec 03, 2007 1:31 pm

All this color talk reminds me that I really should get around to calibrating the projector I got from vrock a while back...
...
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Postposted on Mon Dec 03, 2007 1:35 pm

SpotTheCat wrote:I've read a lot about what Vrock saying to be true about out-of-box settings. They tune these things to look good next to their neighbors in a store isle under fluorescent lighting. A lot of the better ones have good home-use profiles already in them, but others you need to tune yourself when you bring it home. Apparently the settings are extremely stressful on the hardware, too.
It's worse than that. Though you can easily bring a set out of "torch" mode, things like inaccurate colors can't be adjusted on the majority of sets, even in the service menu.

The electronics stores seem to run the sets on the most contrasty image setting because they know that contrast draws the eye (and hence the buyer) hither. This is generally called "vivid" or something like that. On plasmas (and older CRT RPTVs) these high contrast settings can hasten burn-in and decrease the useful life of the set. On non-CRT RPTVs and LCDs it doesn't really hurt the set, it just looks ugly.
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Postposted on Mon Dec 03, 2007 1:39 pm

Personally, I'd never buy a TV I can't pick up and move by myself (or any appliance or piece of furniture, for that matter -- my fridge is the only thing I own that would fall into that category, but it has wheels). So for me that eliminates all the "thick" technologies at any sort of large size.

LCDs got so popular because plasmas did have a bad rep for lifespan in the early days, and like a lot of other things in tech the received wisdom doesn't always keep up with developments. LCDs were available in smaller sizes, so plasmas were out of a lot people's budgets until relatively recently. And LCDs went 1080 first, so they could claim that advantage as well. The backlight and black levels is a an issue, but many consumers are looking at them in the bright lights of a superstore not in the darkened ambience of specialty AV store. I think this also is why they always arrive from the factory with the brightness turned all the way up.
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Postposted on Mon Dec 03, 2007 1:43 pm

mattsteg wrote:All this color talk reminds me that I really should get around to calibrating the projector I got from vrock a while back...
And you have a colorimeter too, IIRC. Someday I need to learn to use one of those.
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Postposted on Mon Dec 03, 2007 1:53 pm

UberGerbil wrote:Personally, I'd never buy a TV I can't pick up and move by myself (or any appliance or piece of furniture, for that matter -- my fridge is the only thing I own that would fall into that category, but it has wheels). So for me that eliminates all the "thick" technologies at any sort of large size.
Plasmas and some larger LCDs may be thin, but they aren't exactly light. I wouldn't want to move one without a little help. My last 50" plasma weighed 90+ pounds with the detachable stand.

UberGerbil wrote:LCDs got so popular because plasmas did have a bad rep for lifespan in the early days, and like a lot of other things in tech the received wisdom doesn't always keep up with developments. LCDs were available in smaller sizes, so plasmas were out of a lot people's budgets until relatively recently. And LCDs went 1080 first, so they could claim that advantage as well. The backlight and black levels is a an issue, but many consumers are looking at them in the bright lights of a superstore not in the darkened ambience of specialty AV store. I think this also is why they always arrive from the factory with the brightness turned all the way up.
Those are good points, I think. Now there 37" 768p plasmas and 42" 1080p plasmas on the market though, and prices favor plasmas vs. LCDs. I can't think of many reasons these days why a consumer should pick an LCD over a plasma for HDTV purposes.
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Postposted on Mon Dec 03, 2007 2:02 pm

Vrock wrote:
UberGerbil wrote:Personally, I'd never buy a TV I can't pick up and move by myself (or any appliance or piece of furniture, for that matter -- my fridge is the only thing I own that would fall into that category, but it has wheels). So for me that eliminates all the "thick" technologies at any sort of large size.
Plasmas and some larger LCDs may be thin, but they aren't exactly light. I wouldn't want to move one without a little help. My last 50" plasma weighed 90+ pounds with the detachable stand.
True. Which is why I decided some time ago that ~47" was the largest TV I would get (at least until we get away from glass).
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Postposted on Mon Dec 03, 2007 2:14 pm

UberGerbil wrote:
Vrock wrote:
UberGerbil wrote:Personally, I'd never buy a TV I can't pick up and move by myself (or any appliance or piece of furniture, for that matter -- my fridge is the only thing I own that would fall into that category, but it has wheels). So for me that eliminates all the "thick" technologies at any sort of large size.
Plasmas and some larger LCDs may be thin, but they aren't exactly light. I wouldn't want to move one without a little help. My last 50" plasma weighed 90+ pounds with the detachable stand.
True. Which is why I decided some time ago that ~47" was the largest TV I would get (at least until we get away from glass).
I helped a friend move a Sony 46" XBR4 and even that thing was something I wouldn't want to move myself.

Compared to the old 27" Trinitron downstairs though, it's a featherweight. :)
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Postposted on Mon Dec 03, 2007 2:27 pm

Vrock wrote:In your opinion, what is it about the plasmas that makes them look better? Color? Contrast? Overall brightness? For me it's definitely the contrast.
The contrast is definitely one of the factors, as is the color. I'm also a big fan of the viewing angle on plasmas, as you're not always able to sit directly in front of the set. We have a sofa directly in front of our set with a love seat to the left and perpendicular of the sofa. If my wife decides to hog the sofa, I can still sit on the loveseat (or the recliner on the other side of the room) and still enjoy a great looking picture. Brightness isn't that big of a factor for me. My set is only 5000:1, and it's more than adequate for my viewing needs regardless if the living room is very bright or dark. The image has just the right amount of "pop", and I couldn't be happier. Though I am pissed with Cox (my cable company) at the moment. They recently did something (possibly an upgrade to the STB) that makes the reds on my set bleed. A lot. At first I freaked out and thought it was my set. But after playing with the settings in every conceivable way, the reds still liked to bleed. I was unable to replicate the issue with both my Wii, Xbox 360, and my upscaling DVD player. So I called Cox and they said that I'm not the first person to complain about it, and that they're "working on it". Bastards.

I will tell you this though, regardless of which HD set you watch college football on, watching Boise State play at home makes my eyes bleed. :lol:

=Edit=
Forgot to mention that my set weighs 123.5 lbs with the pedestal that was included. Suffice to say, I had my father-in-law help me with getting it onto the stand. So yeah.....it might be thin, but that son-of-a-bitch sure isn't light.
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Postposted on Mon Dec 03, 2007 2:34 pm

The horizontal viewing angle on my 2407 LCD are almost perfect. I can sit anywhere in the living room and get almost the exact same picture as sitting right in front of it. Even the vertical viewing angle isn't bad. My friend has a 56" RP that makes it almost unwatchable if you aren't sitting down on the couch or the chairs, while mine it doesn't make much of a difference as long as you are abour 4' away.
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Postposted on Mon Dec 03, 2007 2:37 pm

Usacomp2k3 wrote:The horizontal viewing angle on my 2407 LCD are almost perfect. I can sit anywhere in the living room and get almost the exact same picture as sitting right in front of it. Even the vertical viewing angle isn't bad. My friend has a 56" RP that makes it almost unwatchable if you aren't sitting down on the couch or the chairs, while mine it doesn't make much of a difference as long as you are abour 4' away.
I'll take your word for it. I have a 2407 that I use strictly as a computer monitor, so the viewing angle for me is kind of moot.
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Postposted on Mon Dec 03, 2007 2:45 pm

Usacomp2k3 wrote:The horizontal viewing angle on my 2407 LCD are almost perfect. I can sit anywhere in the living room and get almost the exact same picture as sitting right in front of it. Even the vertical viewing angle isn't bad. My friend has a 56" RP that makes it almost unwatchable if you aren't sitting down on the couch or the chairs, while mine it doesn't make much of a difference as long as you are abour 4' away.
In my experience with LCDs the picture is still quite viewable from off angles, but it's washed out. It's mostly noticeable in darkness (where LCDs show all their weaknesses). Even the finest LCD TVs from Sony and Samsung have sweet spots where if you're one seat of out them, the black level is all shot to hell.
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Postposted on Mon Dec 03, 2007 3:49 pm

Vrock wrote:In my experience with LCDs the picture is still quite viewable from off angles, but it's washed out. It's mostly noticeable in darkness (where LCDs show all their weaknesses). Even the finest LCD TVs from Sony and Samsung have sweet spots where if you're one seat of out them, the black level is all shot to hell.


2nd that. (2x magnavox lcd 37mf437b, 19 benq fp931, GatewayFPD2485w)

The other "strikes" against plasma is the pixel pitch, and you have to get a high altitude model possibly if you live above say 6,000 ft.

Plasma link

The biggest problem I have found so far with all the hd technologies is 2 pronged..

1. It is expensive. I ain't saying it ain't worth it, but it takes a lot of money to get hd sources, and then the hd sources lead me to problem 2.

2. Extreme variability in hd source quality. This varies from parts from some stuff being standard def, to some motion artifacts... blockiness, smear, tearing, stutters, to the whole picture "graining" out or "blocking out". Interlacing/deinterlacing success and motion problems. Due to these problems, you may wear yourself out going through setup screens enabling/disabling Processing your TV does.

I leave my set to display whatever source comes in natively... no pixel scaling. so when a standard def commercial comes on in the middle of an hd program is drops down boxed in the screen.

I notice some digital "crawl" with every hd tv I have looked at. If you get a picture with some fine grain detail and near still or little motion, and watch it, the stuff appears "crawling" even though it shouldn't be.

Even with some problems, I ain't pining for the good ol days of 25" crts. A reasonably good hdtv of any technology provides so much more detail that I enjoy it more. I just darken the room and enjoy.

I got to play with some type large sony rptv this summer in a house we rented, and it had a very nice picture. I don't know the model or what the technology was, but it looked like a nice alternative for its rather large size.
standard def was fugly on it, but what hd source I had and could find was beautiful.
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Postposted on Mon Dec 03, 2007 4:37 pm

cass wrote:2. Extreme variability in hd source quality. This varies from parts from some stuff being standard def, to some motion artifacts... blockiness, smear, tearing, stutters, to the whole picture "graining" out or "blocking out". Interlacing/deinterlacing success and motion problems. Due to these problems, you may wear yourself out going through setup screens enabling/disabling Processing your TV does.
Thank the cable companies for recompressing an already compressed signal so they can shove more channels down the pipe. Bastards.

cass wrote:I notice some digital "crawl" with every hd tv I have looked at. If you get a picture with some fine grain detail and near still or little motion, and watch it, the stuff appears "crawling" even though it shouldn't be.
I've never seen this with Blu-ray or HD-DVD. I'm betting it's source related?

cass wrote:I got to play with some type large sony rptv this summer in a house we rented, and it had a very nice picture. I don't know the model or what the technology was, but it looked like a nice alternative for its rather large size.
standard def was fugly on it, but what hd source I had and could find was beautiful.
Standard def is fugly on all fixed pixel displays because of scaling. Another reason to miss CRTs.
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Postposted on Tue Dec 04, 2007 12:21 am

Vrock wrote:
cass wrote:I notice some digital "crawl" with every hd tv I have looked at. If you get a picture with some fine grain detail and near still or little motion, and watch it, the stuff appears "crawling" even though it shouldn't be.
I've never seen this with Blu-ray or HD-DVD. I'm betting it's source related?


Its definitely source related, but I don't thinkg Blu-ray or HD-DVD will cure it. I will tell you more after I get my first HD dvd here in a few weeks.

The problem I think is color space compression and heavy sharpening processing from low light sources captured with an inadequate device. What reading I am doing on the subject right now suggests that shimmering and crawl will become more and more of a problem because the source sensors are too dense (small with high number of pixels) to allow the correct number of photons to impact each pixel area for each pixel to be accurately sampled. Maybe some uncompressed format with large (1" plus sensors) will help this problem.

This is a large problem with all HD (prosumer,consumer) camcorders right now.

In short, yeah I think its source related and related to the very digitizing, compressing and storing of the digital data.
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Postposted on Tue Dec 04, 2007 7:27 am

Well, Blu-ray and HD-DVD have far less compression and greater bandwidth than broadcast HDTV does, so I'm betting you won't see those issues with them.
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Postposted on Wed Dec 19, 2007 11:53 am

FYI, rumor has it that Sony will be getting out of the rear projection TV business next year (which is a shame considering how well their new SXRD sets have been rated). Toshiba and Hitachi are already out, so that just leaves Samsung and JVC making DLP and LCOS sets respectively.

Apparently the higher margin of flat panels, combined with the "coolness" factor that leads so many to buy them, has contributed to this decision. I only hope the LCD folks at Sony can fix the problems of motion blur, backlight banding, and backlight bleeding that are apparent with the current generation of sets *sigh*.
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Postposted on Wed Dec 19, 2007 1:43 pm

Has anybody done a side-by-side comparison of the 120Hz LCDs with the 60Hz ones? The ones that actually do motion prediction and interpolation should help with motion blur.

I have to say, I'm pretty tolerant / oblivious to a lot of image quality issues when watching TV (as opposed to working with a computer screen) -- heck, I don't even mind static-filled OTA analog broadcasts. But what I do tend to notice is MPEG compression artifacts, mostly because I was up to my armpits dealing with them about 10 years ago and thus was "trained" to detect them. So glitches don't bother me, but I sure notice the blockiness you can get in cable and sat DTV.
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Postposted on Wed Dec 19, 2007 1:51 pm

UberGerbil wrote:Has anybody done a side-by-side comparison of the 120Hz LCDs with the 60Hz ones? The ones that actually do motion prediction and interpolation should help with motion blur.
I've demoed one of those LCDs in my house. They don't help a whit with motion blur because they're (sadly) still 8ms panels (albeit 10 bit ones).

The blur isn't from the source framerate it's from the display refresh rate. The interpolation and prediction algorithims (Sony calls theirs "motionflow") can do a nice job at smoothing out judder, though, and the 120hz does get rid of 3:2 pulldown once and for all, so it has its uses.

My SXRD has motionflow and I leave it off...it can make things look a little artificial and introduces artifacts of its own (you can detect when it "locks" onto a frame and starts interpolating). I do let the 120hz do the 5:5 for Blu-ray, though.
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Postposted on Wed Dec 19, 2007 2:05 pm

Vrock wrote:I've demoed one of those LCDs in my house. They don't help a whit with motion blur because they're (sadly) still 8ms panels (albeit 10 bit ones).
That's interesting (and unfortunate). They're 10bpc? Do they claim support for "deep color" (not that I know of a consumer source for that).
The blur isn't from the source framerate it's from the display refresh rate. The interpolation and prediction algorithims (Sony calls theirs "motionflow") can do a nice job at smoothing out judder, though, and the 120hz does get rid of 3:2 pulldown once and for all, so it has its uses.
Yeah, I always thought they should've started at 120Hz, seeing as how it was a convenient multiple of film and video frame rates (well, close enough) and would've simplified the whole chain. I guess the tech wasn't available at the time (at least, not at a sane price).
My SXRD has motionflow and I leave it off...it can make things look a little artificial and introduces artifacts of its own (you can detect when it "locks" onto a frame and starts interpolating). I do let the 120hz do the 5:5 for Blu-ray, though.
Well, of course the problem is that it has to guess and sometimes it guesses wrong. There's potential for adding additional "hints" in the stream to aid in that, but it's going to depend on the algorithm the screen is using. You could imagine Sony adding hints to Sony Pictures BR streams that only help its screens.
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Postposted on Wed Dec 19, 2007 2:17 pm

UberGerbil wrote:That's interesting (and unfortunate). They're 10bpc? Do they claim support for "deep color" (not that I know of a consumer source for that).
Yes, they do deep color and support the new xvYCC color space. I think Sony makes a HD camera that supports deep color, but that's all I know of.

UberGerbil wrote:Yeah, I always thought they should've started at 120Hz, seeing as how it was a convenient multiple of film and video frame rates (well, close enough) and would've simplified the whole chain. I guess the tech wasn't available at the time (at least, not at a sane price).
Agreed on all counts.

UberGerbil wrote:Well, of course the problem is that it has to guess and sometimes it guesses wrong. There's potential for adding additional "hints" in the stream to aid in that, but it's going to depend on the algorithm the screen is using. You could imagine Sony adding hints to Sony Pictures BR streams that only help its screens.
The two modes that Sony offers are a Standard and a High mode. Standard can really smooth things out and they look pretty natural with the occasional visible artifact. It's pretty decent, really. High on the other hand is an absolute joke. It makes everything look like a video game, it's so uncannily smooth in such a bad way. It's hard to describe, you have to see it yourself.
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Postposted on Sat Dec 22, 2007 11:56 am

It's all but confirmed that Sony will not produce rear projection TVs next year. Anyone who wants what's arguably the best 1080p TV for the money right now needs to get one quickly.
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Postposted on Sat Dec 22, 2007 12:38 pm

I wonder how this will change the price of replacement bulbs, if at all.
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Postposted on Sun Dec 23, 2007 10:42 am

SpotTheCat wrote:I wonder how this will change the price of replacement bulbs, if at all.
I would think it wouldn't, at least not in the near term. I'm pretty sure that Sony is required by law to maintain stocks of service parts and the like for several years after phasing out a product, plus it's just good business. The aftermarket supply might dry up but I'd bet Sony will still have bulbs. Heck, Pioneer still has parts you can order for some of its laserdisc players made back in the 90s.

With the A3000 sets having bulbs that are supposed to be good up to 8,000 hours, I'll likely replace the TV before the bulb goes bad.
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Postposted on Sun Dec 23, 2007 11:04 am

Vrock wrote:You know what those 52" LCDs are good for? People who care more about how a television looks than how it looks, if you get me. Style over substance. If you're going to go flat panel, do yourself a favor and get a plasma. Even the best LCDs aren't as good as a decent plasma; especially when it comes to temporal resolution and black levels. Then there's backlight leakage, poor viewing angles, and backlight banding, all of which can ruin watching a TV in a darkened room. Frankly I'm amazed that LCDs are as popular as they are when plasmas are cheaper; it shows that the average consumer either doesn't know or doesn't care about image quality.

you have clearly never seen sony's bravia XBR series. the viewing angle is 178 degrees and the color and picture quality are amazing.

also the main benefit for LCD screens over plasma is pixel perfect resolution, and computer compatibility. a plasma @1080p uses some odd resolution, where an LCD uses actual 1920x1080. it's very sweet for my HTPC setup.
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Postposted on Sun Dec 23, 2007 11:17 am

leor wrote:
Vrock wrote:You know what those 52" LCDs are good for? People who care more about how a television looks than how it looks, if you get me. Style over substance. If you're going to go flat panel, do yourself a favor and get a plasma. Even the best LCDs aren't as good as a decent plasma; especially when it comes to temporal resolution and black levels. Then there's backlight leakage, poor viewing angles, and backlight banding, all of which can ruin watching a TV in a darkened room. Frankly I'm amazed that LCDs are as popular as they are when plasmas are cheaper; it shows that the average consumer either doesn't know or doesn't care about image quality.

you have clearly never seen sony's bravia XBR series. the viewing angle is 178 degrees and the color and picture quality are amazing.
I demoed a top of the line 46XBR4 in my home for 30 days. I calibrated it and spent nearly 80 hours watching various types of content on it. It's the best LCD TV I've ever seen. That being said, it also had some major issues which I couldn't live with.

The viewing angles were one of them. If you're one seat out of the sweet spot with this TV, the black level takes a considerable hit, especially if you're watching in a light controlled room. Two seats out of the spot, and you might have well just spent your money on a Vizio LCD TV. As for 178 degree, I LOL. Yes, the picture is visible at 178 degrees. Visible and watchable are not the same thing, though.

The color was good on this TV, accurate but a bit oversaturated. I could have lived with it, because the contrast was outstanding as was the clarity of the picture. It produced a very noise-free image.

Motion blur is also apparent since the XBR series uses an 8ms panel. Temporal resolution is shot all to hell when the camera pans.

The biggest problem with this set was the backlight. There are multiple reports of clouding and uneven backlighting with this TV. The one I demoed had a mild case of this, and a small ray of light leaking out of the bottom right hand corner which was very distracting with 2.35:1 movies. An even bigger problem than the backlight bleeding/uniformity was the backlight banding. This manifests itself as multiple horizontal bands that appear in bright scenes when the camera pans up and down. Very distracting.

I wound up returning the set. For $2800-3000, I expect near perfection in a TV set. The Sony XBR4 had too many issues to merit its pricetag. Which is a shame, because the contrast and clarity of the picture was quite impressive.

leor wrote:also the main benefit for LCD screens over plasma is pixel perfect resolution, and computer compatibility. a plasma @1080p uses some odd resolution, where an LCD uses actual 1920x1080. it's very sweet for my HTPC setup.
Where did you get this info? 1080p plasmas are in fact 1920x1080.
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Postposted on Sun Dec 23, 2007 12:21 pm

Vrock wrote: I demoed a top of the line 46XBR4 in my home for 30 days. I calibrated it and spent nearly 80 hours watching various types of content on it. It's the best LCD TV I've ever seen. That being said, it also had some major issues which I couldn't live with.

You are a very discerning user. That bit hasn't been said much around here.
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Postposted on Sun Dec 23, 2007 12:23 pm

lordtottuu wrote:
Vrock wrote: I demoed a top of the line 46XBR4 in my home for 30 days. I calibrated it and spent nearly 80 hours watching various types of content on it. It's the best LCD TV I've ever seen. That being said, it also had some major issues which I couldn't live with.

You are a very discerning user. That bit hasn't been said much around here.
The XBR series is supposed to be for discerning users, so the things I mentioned are worth mentioning.
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Postposted on Sun Dec 23, 2007 12:31 pm

Vrock wrote:
lordtottuu wrote:
Vrock wrote: I demoed a top of the line 46XBR4 in my home for 30 days. I calibrated it and spent nearly 80 hours watching various types of content on it. It's the best LCD TV I've ever seen. That being said, it also had some major issues which I couldn't live with.

You are a very discerning user. That bit hasn't been said much around here.
The XBR series is supposed to be for discerning users, so the things I mentioned are worth mentioning.

I am guessing there are levels of discerning users then. I've seen the TV in question at the local store where I picked up my HDTV and I found it really, really good. Provided it wasn't in an environment controlled by me but I still found it damn good.
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