RCA MM36110 Questions

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Harold A, Mar 29, 2001.

  1. Harold A

    Harold A Stunt Coordinator

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    I am looking at direct view 36" HDTV ready sets. I am very interested in the RCA. I want to see if all my information is correct.
    First, is has higher resolution then both the Sonys and Panasonics. I think it can actually display 1080i. It does not have an internal line doubler, which I think is probably a good thing since I have a progressive scan DVD player and all I hear is complaints about internal line doublers and NTSC material.
    How does this tv handle 1080i HDTV from the RCA STB? I assume 1080i material is displayed letter boxed, Is it squeezed? If not are there black or grey bars?
    Is there any reason that this tv does no get bought up like the Sony and Panasonics? I know it is not a flat screen but I am not that impressed with the flat screens there seems to be many geometry problems with them.
    Does anyone know the dimensions of the matching stand both the outside and inside? I can not find any information on it on the RCA webpage.
    Thanks
     
  2. Abdul Jalib

    Abdul Jalib Stunt Coordinator

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    The RCA MM36110 almost certainly has higher resolution than the Sony 36XBR400, and probably has higher resolution than the Panasonic CT-36HX40 as well. You cannot really say that one set displays 1080i and another does not. All these
    sets accept 1080i and do the best job they can of displaying it; the RCA just comes a lot closer to displaying the full HDTV resolution than the Sony and probably the Panasonic. The RCA's HDTV picture is apparently spectacular, though its resolution will still fall short of the best HD-ready RPTV's.
    Out of the box, the MM36110 does not display 1080i properly. I believe it will crop the image left and right, but however it messes 1080i up, you can correct it via the service menu by changing the height and width of the image for 1080i mode, so that you get a letterboxed 16x9 image that is not distorted or cropped. Unfortunately, it sounds like on this particular set, decreasing the vertical height will leave the picture at the top of the screen, so you have a big letterbox bar below and none above. This letterbox area would be unscanned and hence black. I would be surprised if you could not fix the centering with additional service mode adjustments, but I've never heard anyone say it's possible.
    RCA has lots of glitches/failures in their sets in general. Their first version of a 38" HDTV had a little problem of bursting into flames, apparently. Sony has a great reputation in TV's with the general public, marketing, marketing, marketing, but if anything you're more likely to have quality control and design problems with the Sony sets than the RCA.
    I never saw a MM36110 or MM32110 in any of the stores I visited.
    Line doublers are great when they are great. You can get a great line doubler for the MM36110 by using a HTPC or a DVDO iScan Pro.
    A HTPC will also solve the main handicap of the MM36110, which is its lack of an anamorphic squeeze for DVD's. Using the HTPC, you can pump in 600p nonanamorphic, which is the equivalent of 450p anamorphic, and which will actually be superior to 480p anamorphic from a progressive DVD player, because of the superior processing of the PC.
    In short, this is a very quirky set that really wasn't designed very well by RCA in terms of user features, but the tube is great, and you can tweak it into a monster of a HD-ready TV.
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  3. JakeR

    JakeR Stunt Coordinator

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    I think the RCA sets are downright laughable. The F38310, when introduced last fall, was recalled due to the sets apparently catching on fire at the most inappropriate times. (Like, next to your couch.)
    I've seen the 36" HD set, and yes, the picture is quite lovely. DVD looks fantastic. Two quibbles:
    1. The screen bubbles out. In the era of great RPTVs, and Sony and Panasonic flat screens, this is very distracting. For me, anyway.
    2. It's an RCA. 'Nuff said.
    Talk to a repair center. Talk to anyone who sells electronics and has to deal with RCA's terrible quality control. That the company isn't out of business is due solely to older folks who come in looking for the brand based on the fact that the RCA they bought in 1979 is still going strong.
    When you can walk into Sears and price-match a Panasonic 36HX40 for the same price, or cheaper, as the RCA set, I question why anyone would even consider it. I was definitely intrigued by the price drop on the "new" F38310, especially considering the built-in decoder and features, but I advise everyone not to be tempted. You are setting yourself up for disappointment.
    (Speaking of the decoder, DirecTV only offers HBO and after-midnight PPV, whereas Dish also offers Showtime and reasonable airings of order-only movies.)
    Stay far away.
     
  4. Harold A

    Harold A Stunt Coordinator

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    I looked at the Panasonic but the thing that concerns me is the geometry problems people seem to have. I dont want to go through several TV sets before getting one with a proper picture.
    As for the RCA catching fire, I am a volunteer fireman and welcome the challenge plus I got sprinklers and insurance.
     
  5. Carol Curtis

    Carol Curtis Stunt Coordinator

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    My local Radio Shack has the RCA MM36100 last years model. You might want to check your RS to see what it looks like. If they don't have one ask them which RS in the area has it.
    FROM RCA'S 2000-2001 CATALOG:
    (Believe it or not they have the size listed in 2 different places & the measurements are different?)
    MM36110
    PAGE 9 OF THE CATALOG:
    HEIGHT 28 1/5"
    WIDTH 38 3/5"
    DEPTH 26 2/5"
    PAGE 73 OF THE CATALOG:
    HEIGHT 28 1/4"
    WIDTH 38 1/2"
    DEPTH 26 3/8"
    OPTIONAL BASE RRS36G (no measurements given)
    FROM RCA'S 1999-2000 CATALOG:
    MM36100
    PAGE 13 OF THE CATALOG:
    HEIGHT 30 9/10"
    WIDTH 33 3/5"
    DEPTH 24 3/10"
    NO BASE LISTED FOR IT
     
  6. PeterG

    PeterG Agent

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    Would someone please advise where exactly they have read that the F38310 has caught fire?
    I do remember reading here or on avsforum where there was one individual who posted on the TV and mentioned, very tongue in cheek to me, that it was recalled due to being prone to catching fire. This "catching fire" comment seems to have been picked up by some people as actually meant seriously.
    The reason for the recall I have read is:
    a) Colour purity issue
    and
    b) Periodically going to black for a second or so every 28 minutes or similar period.
    Looking forward to reading up on the source of this.
    Peter
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  7. Harold A

    Harold A Stunt Coordinator

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    After going to 3 different BB this week and comparing the 32hx40 to the MM36110 I can honeslty say that at least to me the RCA is the way to go especially because they are lowering prices.
    Every hx40 I looked at either was titled or was severely bowed in the middle. I do not want to go through the hassle of sending several hx40s back until I get a good one. I can definatley live without a built in line doubler. I might miss having vertical squeeze for DVDs but on a 36" tv I do not believe it is that big of a difference.
    On a side note why do all HDTV reasy tube tvs have to put the speakers on the side? Do they just love watching all of us throw away are existing TV stands?
     
  8. JakeR

    JakeR Stunt Coordinator

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    Funny about the RCA running 10 hours a day, every day...we ('we' being me and the local electronics retailer that employs me) recently put out a 52" RCA HD-ready projection set. Three weeks later, it was dead. It looked as if someone had put a fishbowl in front of the lenses, as the image bowed inward and produced bright red ghosts around everything. Like a 3D effect. Has to go out for service, as it can't be fixed in-store.
    I had actually entertained the possibility of buying the F38310, especially considering the price drop, but not after that incident. Rarely, if ever, do sets arrive and promptly crap out weeks later.
    And after long hours spent admiring the Sony and Panasonic sets, I find myself too distracted by a bubbled tube. Just my preference. I really have no personal grudge against RCA, but I would highly recommend that if you decide to buy one, go for a local retailer with a fair exchange policy.
     
  9. Andy_A

    Andy_A Second Unit

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    I think it is ignorant and hasty to automatically discount RCA "just because it is RCA". I sell tvs and in my opinion, they make a very fine product. I've tweeked the MM36110 quite a bit and I can honestly say the clarity beats the Sony KV36XBR400. Hands down. You can also pick up the RCA for 10 above cost. Yes, 10 above cost. That is what stores are selling it for now. Around 1599. Who really cares if the screen is not flat when you put in a dvd and turn out the lights? I know I don't. I really think one of the biggest attractions of flat screens is that people can say "I got me one o' dem flat screen TVs!" I just don't get it- especially the price people pay for them. Sure they look good, but so does the RCA MM36110. And for a fraction of the cost. In addition, the "fire" issue is news to me. It sounds like some Sony crusader picked up this rumor and ran with it...
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    "There are no stupid questions, but there sure are a lot of inquisitive idiots."
    -source forgotten
     

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