57XBR2 with Avia Calib. vs. 57HW40 Prof. calib.?

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by David Glenn, Feb 20, 2002.

  1. David Glenn

    David Glenn Second Unit

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    If I go 57", I'd have a very difficult time choosing between a Sony 57HW40, 57XBR2 and a Toshiba 57H81.

    Ok, so here's what I'm asking:

    If I purchase a Sony 57HW40 or a Toshiba 57H81 and have it professionally ISF calibrated will it look as good as a 57XBR2 that is out of the box or is calibrated using Avia?

    BTW, 70% of my viewing will be DVDs and I have Direct TV.

    My logic is that I'm hoping to achieve a similar picture quality to the XBR2 and still save money if I get one of the non XBR 57" RPTVs professionally calibrated.

    Since I have Direct TV, If I go with the XBR2, I'll need to get a separate HD tuner anyway.
     
  2. Jenna

    Jenna Second Unit

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    David,

    I just purchased the Sony 57HW40 (after being unable to find a Toshiba 57HX81 locally). A good friend of mine (who works at BestBuy in TV/Stereo Dept) calibrated the set using the Avia Home Theater DVD. Let me tell you, the picture quality far surpassed what I had imagined. We watched "Moulin Rouge" via Sony's DVP-NS700P progressive-scan DVD player and the picture was crystal clear, and the colors popped from the screen.

    My friend commented that the initial factory settings were very close to "perfection".

    I've seen (and fell in love with) the 57XBR2 -- the hi-def image was the best I've seen; however, I just couldn't justify the $2K price difference, knowing I'd still have to purchase an expensive HD-Satellite tuner. I'm having DirecTV installed in the next 2 weeks, so I won't be able to see the HD quality...but I'm quite amazed at how well the set handles my digital cable signal. It looks as good as some DVDs.
     
  3. Christian Dolan

    Christian Dolan Stunt Coordinator

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    David,

    It’s kind of like this: Using Avia is like changing yur own oil. Getting a pro calibration is like getting a tune-up with an experienced mechanic. Plus, it’s the only way to confidently know that you have an accurate gray scale, since, like trying to set audio levels without an SPL meter, it can’t be done just by eye. Hope this helps.

    -Christian
     
  4. Andy_A

    Andy_A Second Unit

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    If you want the best, get the XBR. It is the best Sony has, definitely in the high end with Pioneer Elite, Mits, etc. The HW 40 is also very nice, though...
     
  5. Chris PC

    Chris PC Producer

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    I would prefer the Sony's over the Toshiba cause the Sony displays the native 480p of a progressive DVD player while the Toshiba upconverts the 480p to 540p.
     
  6. Michael TLV

    Michael TLV THX Video Instructor/Calibrator

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    Greetings

    In general, a fully calibrated HW40 Sony will look superior to the XBR (which just used AVIA).

    Full calibration goes through a variety of checks and balances on the TV ...

    With just an OOTB XBR ... you are at the mercy of random luck. Maybe some vibration on the way to your hame makes the focus go off ... maybe carrying it down the stairs does the trick ...

    If your XBR is out of focus ... no amount of AVIA tweaking will fix that or money paid to the dealer. You need to get down and dirty to make things right.

    Colour accuracy of the XBR's is also no worse or better than the standard HW40 sets. All you get are snazzier menus.

    Regards
     
  7. David Glenn

    David Glenn Second Unit

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    Thank you Michael and everyone who replied to this thread.
     

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