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#1 of 13 OFFLINE   Ed Werner

Ed Werner

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Posted April 25 2003 - 12:59 PM

I just went out to Circuit City and purchased a Hitachi 57" digital widescreen model #57SWX20B

I have done as much reseach as I could, as well as side by side with many TVs before purchasing. The Hitachi just IMO looked better than some models up to 1G more. The colors are vibrant and detailed and the picture looks very sharp, even the cable tv signal they were sending to it in the store looked great! There was a Sony (sorry, forgot the model number but was about 700 more for the same size) right beside it that just looked for lack of better words...flat.

I initally wanted a Mitsubishi, but quickly realized that
1. I can't afford the model I wanted (711) and
2. They seem to look not so great in the stores and I have heard that they look their best after a calibration.

Toshiba was an option, but I have seen/heard alot of problems with them from guns going out to build quality issues.

Do you guys think I made the right choice for my price range(sub 3G)?

Now all I have to get is well....everything. LOL. I have a good beginning in the audio portion of my HT with my Integra DTR 8.2 and Polk speakers (csi40 rt600i fxi50) but I plan to add to all of this:
--Integra 2ch. amp
--RTi 150 fronts
--PSW 650 (off of a board member)
--FXi 50 rears (to add 7.1)
--Integra DPS 7.3 DVD player (to replace the crappy toshiba non progressive scan POS that I have now)
--Integra 6 disk CD changer
--Monster Line conditioner (prob HTs 5000)

I have all Monster cable interconnects, not the cheap ones, but not the expensive ones either. Mostly monster video 1 rca cables (need to replace now with S video and component cables) and their good audio cables (and the better of their fiber optic cable for the DVD) I also have to get the component Xbox cable, I just have the RCA now. I have 16g monster speaker wire to (you guessed it) monster bannana plugs (very nice, tool-less install, holds very well).

I will have alot for sale within the next month or two. A reciever (TXSR600), DVD player (Toshiba 5 disk) and cables. More on that later.

Sorry bout the long post. But I am new here and this is a MAJOR purchase for me. Even my wife has warmed up to the idea, so that is a major hurdle in the rear view, next is how to get the money to pay for all of this. Posted Image

Opinions welcome, thanks for lookin!


PS. Its funny to look at the guy at circuit city when he goes, "Well how are you gonna pay for this...obviously not cash, check or credit?" Then I pull out 3300 cash. Posted Image


#2 of 13 OFFLINE   BruceSpielbauer


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Posted April 25 2003 - 02:25 PM

>>I just went out to Circuit City and purchased a Hitachi 57" digital widescreen model #57SWX20B <<< Yes, I think you purchased a great unit. As a matter of fact, if I were buying today I would buy either the Hitachi or the Mitsubishi (which you considered), or the Pioneer Elite. I went with the Mits for many reasons, but several are no longer valid today. (At the time I bought, Hitachi's sets were not NEAR as good as they are with this year's models. Also, I am a tweaker, and I love trying to self-calibrate my Mits. Also, at the time I bought, DVI was not really an issue.) You bought a good RPTV set. I would not be too worried about choices of brands in cabling, since the "Monster" thing has a certain amount of hype built in (they are not BAD cables at all, but they are probably somewhat overpriced.) Concentrate less on that nonsense, since it will not really affect your sound or your picture quality, and try to concentrate on the other components you are going to eventually purchase. You did well. Welcome! -Bruce in Chi-Town

#3 of 13 OFFLINE   Ed Werner

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Posted April 25 2003 - 03:39 PM

Thank you so very much for the kind words! Even one response put my mind at ease. I sometimes get so nervous when purchase these things I start shaking...lol BTW, I just want to say that I am not saying any TV or MY TV is better than anyone elses. I just wanted to make that clear, and I hope that everyone enjoys their TVs reguardless of brand. Thanks again! Ed PS. I do know that Monster Cable is a little overpriced. I also know there are better cables out there. But I also factor in the convienance of just being able to hit a Best Buy or CC and how sooooooo much better they are then the crappy patch cables they give you with components, I am happy to spend the money and have piece of mind that no interference will get into the signal.

#4 of 13 OFFLINE   Jesse H

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Posted April 25 2003 - 03:57 PM

I too have a new HDTV baby coming to me on Sunday and I am SOOO excited!!!! Posted Image

Panasonic PT53WX42

Will be calibrating all day Sunday/Monday I'm sure, hehe.

#5 of 13 OFFLINE   Ed Werner

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Posted April 25 2003 - 04:20 PM

Congrats! Let us know how you like it, I will be sure to do the same! What calibration disk should I get? I see all this talk about AVIA, but am I reading things wrong or are there two diff. disks AVIA makes? What about the other ones? Where should I get them? I would like something that helps calibrate both my HT Audio system and Video system. IF I have to buy two or even two different manufacturers to get the best results, then so be it. Suggestions? Should I have the set ISF calibrated (I think thats what its called right?) How much does that typically cost? For those that have had it done, did you notice a considerable difference after it was done? Thanks again, Ed *edit* I am going to go get an analog radio shack calibration thingy (<--technical name eludes me right now) so I can calibrate my speakers to the even levels that they should be. Not worth the extra cash for the digital right? Slower to respond right? Just making sure as I have allready bought too much redundant equipment and my wife is gonna have a conniption.

#6 of 13 OFFLINE   JoeyB



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Posted April 26 2003 - 01:11 AM

The analog RadioShack Sound Pressure Level Meter should be adequate for your purposes, and seems to be the preferred unit. I also avoid paying the extra $ for Monster cable, I'm not a "believer". BTW, most recommend 12G for speaker wire, but this does depend on the length of your runs. The Avia Guide to Home Theater DVD has all the patterns you should need for adjusting your TV. It also has audio tests for 5.1 (but not 6.1 or 7.1). I bought my copy from deepdiscountdvd.com. When buying big ticket items, I prefer to pay via credit card. It can give an extra level of protection if something goes wrong or if there is any dispute between you and the vendor.

#7 of 13 OFFLINE   Ed Werner

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Posted April 27 2003 - 09:43 PM


I came home from work this A.M. and went out to Best Buy around 10:40, waited till 11:00 when they opened Posted Image and bought some Monster 3 component vid cables (wallet still in intensive care) and an employee whom is into HT (read: not talking out of ass or brainless)suggested I go with at least their vid 2 comp. cable so I figured if I am spending that much allready I might as well just throw the extra money at the 3's. Boy am I not dissapointed. Yes I realize I am going from a 27" TV all hooked up with just mid-line monster composite cable, and considering my DVD player isn't even progressive scan, all I can say is DAMN. There is nothing like having the "whole package" that I have been looking for. HD big screen, and in my humble opinion a very nice sounding polk 5.1 speaker surround system and DTR 8.2 to run it.

Cable: Can be from pretty nice to grainy, even some moderate pixillation (i dunno if that is even a "the" word or if it is the right term) seems to be in a couple of channels with some obvious artifacts mixed in. Feed is from cable box(which is the first and formost weak link, and I am looking to see if I can upgrade soon) thru the reciever VIA a composite cable again. Plan to upgrade to S-Video from reciever to TV, but have to wait for upgraded box (if there is even one now) for S Vid or better from cable box to reciever.

DVD: *not progressive scan DVD player* That being noted, the picture is allready a 9 of 10. I am no expert, and prob don't know what to look for, but the picture was sharp, colors PERFECT, and I didn't notice a blemish the whole movie. This is where I am sold on the cables I bought. Even though the source isn't the best, you can tell (and reasonably deduct) that there can be basically no signal loss to produce a picture that looks so good. Can't wait to get the Integra DVD player I am looking at (DPS 7.3). Movie: Resident Evil wide screen version.

XBox: If you have a HD TV and XBox, you NEED to get the monster 400 cable and good fiber optic cable for surround. Summed up, it is like experiencing your new system, with new games for the first time...TIMES TEN. I was playing MechAssault online, and only got 1 kill (I usually average 10 or more per game) because I was in AWE of the graphics. The details in Hells Kitchen such as the lava pouring from those cauldrons into the pits, details so sharp, you break a sweat. I was shaking. You get the point.

The TV itself: It was literally a plug and play issue once I got myself at one with the remote, which is very nicely laid out. Actually it is similar to the ones I have been using before my CHAD that came with my reciever (Onkyo). You just plug it in, wait 20 mins while it plays a source (I used CATV) and then you just tap the Magic Focus button. The TV calibrates itself!! No shading, or lines of any kinds, colors are true and depending on what you set the temp to, can be toned down and turned up with great headroom. There are presets for watching movies, sports, news, etc. I just set mine on movie, and made a few tweaks to get the best poss. picture from what I am feeding it and again, it looks great with minimal amount of effort. No color, sharpness or any other kind of setup adjustment needed when going from my lowly cable feed to the much better DVD signal.

Benefits:I realized that in the near future, for not much over a hundred bucks or so, I can hook my laptop and use my TV as a display! OMG the possiblities are endless, this and other small things (and big) and my final conclusion is that I am SO GLAD I bought this model. I can just hook up a wireless card to the net which is at the Xbox not even 8 feet away. Another gaming world integrated into my home theater. Not to mention, downloading songs and immediately playing them on the system as well as streaming feeds. I need to upgrade to a new laptop now (PIII 600, I want a gaming laptop, the alienware ones on EBay look nice (without the alienware name or price).

More good news: While at best buy, I decided for the heck of it to look at their selection of audio racks. I had looked not even a month or so ago and they had nothing that interested me. I wanted this 6 shelf model from Sanus, from their natural audio line. I have been pricing it online for a bit now. I turn the corner to the aisle and lo and behold, there is the EXACT rack I want in cherry to match my coffee/end tables. And its 50 bucks cheaper, not including what I would have paid for shipping!

Its almost like the HT god was smiling upon me today.

Sorry so long, but I even feel this write up isn't doing the TV justice. Posted Image

I am smilin like a butchers dog right now, and it will take alot to get me all the way down from cloud nine. :b

If anyone wants more, just ask, and I will answer any question you might have to the best of my ability concerning this TV or any parts of my setup.

Thanks for lookin, and take care,


#8 of 13 OFFLINE   Gary Lisker

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Posted April 28 2003 - 09:38 AM

Ed, I recently bought the Hitachi 51SWX20B and I'm really happy with it. The HT gods were smiling on me too, because Comcast in Atlanta started offering HD converter boxes about three weeks after I got the TV, so I'm now enjoying a few HD channels, which look great. If you do a search on this forum you'll find several helpful threads on recommended picture adjustments for the Hitachi SWX series. I ended up getting mine ISF-calibrated, and it wasn't cheap but the picture looks incredible now. It looked good to me before, but the calibration tech showed me where the colors were off as he did the adjustments. He also removed the protective screen, which may not be feasible if you have kids, but that thing reflected a terrible amount of glare and rendered dark movies (like Unforgiven) virtually unwatchable during the day. Without the protective screen, there's no glare.

#9 of 13 OFFLINE   BrianTran



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Posted May 01 2003 - 03:13 AM

Ed, I'm thinking about buying a Mitsubishi WS 65511. I have done some shopping and the lowest price I found was $3200. How much was your Hitachi? Did you shop for the best price before buying it at Circuit City? Would you recommend for me to get the Mitsubishi or the Hitachi. I did not consider buying a Hitachi. But, after reading your thread, I'm thinking about it. I understand that you say there needs to be some collaberation for the Mitsubishi to look it best. I'm a newbie. I don't even know what "collabertion" means. So should I even get the Mitsubishi? Thanks, Brian

#10 of 13 OFFLINE   BrianTran



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Posted May 01 2003 - 03:18 AM

What is RPTV? What does it mean?

#11 of 13 OFFLINE   Jon_Liu


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Posted May 01 2003 - 04:05 AM

RPTV means Rear Projection Television
Outside of a dog, a book is man's best friend. But, inside of a dog, it's too dark to read.

#12 of 13 OFFLINE   JuniorR



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Posted May 01 2003 - 07:32 AM

Ed: Glad to hear about your new TV. I, like you, just received my 57swx20b fro Sears. Purchased it on Fri ...arrived on Sat. To my disappointment, there was a huge crack on the right side by the handles. Sears said they would subtract $300 if I kept it. (By the way, I got the tv for $2844.50 including tax. Told them I can get it from pac-2000.com for a $2399 + shipping which was like $230, so they almost matched the price) Anyways, I opted to just keep the broken set until the new one arrived on Tues. I am VERY happy with it so far. Got HDTV box from Brighthouse (formerly Time Warner) on Tues as well, and the picture is outstanding! The best pic so far has come from the NBAHD channel, and others look great too. DVD is great too, though I have not tested out too many so far. Cable is ok, but thats about all you can get from Cable. I have not yet to tweak it yet, but probably will do it very soon. I have Avia, and it really can make a difference if you use it. BTW, I leave mine on Movie mode since that is the only mode that uses the 3:2 pulldown I think. I noticed it making a differece on some of the programs I was watching. And yes, Xbox is magnificent on it. I use the monster cables and monster optic cables, and picture and sound is great ..though my Asscend speakers and HSU sub help too! Speaking of tweaks, does anyone know which tweaks should be done 1st? (Red push, convergence, green push, etc) Good luck w/ you new baby, hopefully you will not be disappotinted and you got a good set and not one w/the ghosting or pastel problems (look for posts by Michael)

#13 of 13 OFFLINE   Jeff Adams

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Posted May 07 2003 - 02:57 AM

These sets sound very nice. I actually posted a thread last night in regards to Hitachi's flagship hdtv, the 57WXW20B.
"I'm your Huckleberry"

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