Help buying wide screen TV

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by James_C, Nov 26, 2001.

  1. James_C

    James_C Agent

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    I am fairly new at HT. I have slowly been upgrading my system for the past year. I am starting to look at wide screen tv's. Unfortunatly, I don't know much about them. I have seen a thread here about the Panasonic 47" wide screen. Is that a good model? What are some good names to look for in a Wide screen?? I'm looking to spend around $2000 or so. Thank you!!!
     
  2. Craig

    Craig Second Unit

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    Other makes I'd consider are the Toshiba 42"($2000 or less) and 50" (under $2500) widescreens and the Mitsubishi 46" ($2000 or less). The Panasonic seems to be a good set, at least from most of the posts here.

    If you're using the set mainly for DVDs and HDTV then you'll get a very good picture on most HDTV sets. Picture varies with cable and satellite and is very much dependent on quality of input signal.

    I've had a 56" Toshiba widescreen for two years and couldn't be happier, you won't regret your purchase.
     
  3. Carlo Medina

    Carlo Medina Executive Producer

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    Please do think about ISF calibration. A good ISF'er will make a world of difference to any of these sets, but particularly the Panasonic (my TV). After a good ISF calibration you will be hard pressed to tell the difference picture-wise between these sets. The only differences will be bells & whistles (menu options, # of inputs, etc.) and that will vary from manufacturer to manufacturer.
     
  4. James_C

    James_C Agent

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    ISF calibration?? Excuse my ignorance!! What is that? Also, what is "burn in"?? And is it a problem with wide screen??
     
  5. JohnHN

    JohnHN Stunt Coordinator

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    ISF stands for Imaging Science Foundation and ISF calibration usually refers to grey scale calibration although many other tweaks are possible. Most sets have a grey scale (which should be black and white) that is colored, usually tilted toward blue. Manufacturers do this to make the sets appear more vivid when there is substantial ambient light (e.g. showrooms, livingrooms). Usually a set has several picture modes with "movie" being relatively close to correct and "sports" being very blue. You cannot fix the grey scale using standard user controls (color and temp). You need to use the service menu and you should have a color analyzer. Most experts (and I am NOT an expert) recommend waiting until the set has been used for 100 hours before paying to have the grey scale adjusted. For one thing, you don't want to pay to fix the grey scale on a lemon. You can read more about ISF calibration and other tweaks at
    http://www.keohi.com/keohihdtv/
    Of the other tweaks, the most basic is setting the user controls (contrast, brightness, color, temp, sharpness) correctly. You can, and should, do this yourself as soon as you get the set. Have the Avia test DVD (or Video Essentials, but I find Avia easier to use) on hand when the set arrives.
    It is particularly important to lower contrast to the point where, in a darkened room, white just appears white, rather than grey. This contrast setting is usually much lower than the TV's default, even in movie mode. If you watch TV with a lot of ambient light you may have to raise contrast well above this point, but be aware that doing so will cause the TV to age prematurely. And the TV will look its best in a dark room. Note that when you lower contrast you will probably have to compensate by raising brightness. Avia gives test material to help you do this. One common point of confusion: it is contrast, not brightness, that controls light output. Brightness, paradoxically, controls black level.
    Many other tweaks are possible. I have done a 56 pt convergence, mechanical and electronic focus on my Toshiba 50HX81, but these require going into service mode and/or actually opening up the TV. You have to be a bit (perhaps more than a bit) foolhardy to do this kind of thing. Of these tweaks, the 56 pt convergence was worth it. The 9pt convergence permitted by standard user controls just doesn't cut it. The focus adjustments, on the other hand, caused no harm but didn't much good either.
     

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