Sony 57hw40 vs Toshiba 57hx81

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Bill Bradstreet, Dec 26, 2001.

  1. Bill Bradstreet

    Bill Bradstreet Stunt Coordinator

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    Well, I did a search and didn't come up with anything. I assume this question has been asked before though.

    Can someone help me understand the pro/con between the Sony 57HW40 & Toshiba 57HX81?

    I've always liked Sony TVs but have always felt that they were expensive. But now, I'm seeing that I can buy a Tosh 57hx81 for $2,500 - $3,000. The Sony is only from $2,800 - $3,200. That's not much of a difference.

    I've never been good at understanding the different features and what each manufacturer calls them. Are there any features found on the Sony that aren't on the Toshiba? What about on the Toshiba that aren't on the Sony?

    Thanks in advance. I spend more time on the audio side of this forum. I like a good image, but haven't spent enough time over here getting my hands around the latest technology.
     
  2. Steve Schaffer

    Steve Schaffer Producer

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    Both are good sets, you'd probably be happy with either one. I got the Sony because after many hours of shopping and playing with both I felt the Sony DRC did a better job than Tosh's doubler with ntsc sources.
    Toshiba converts all 480i and 480p signals to 540p. Sony converts 480i to either 960i or 480p, your choice, and displays 480p natively.
    Both sets have 3/2 pulldown for film based interlaced sources. Toshiba links this to thier "Movie" picture mode, Sony lets you select it in any picture mode.
    Toshiba stores separate video settings for each input, but only one set of user adjusted settings is available per input. If you change cable or satellite channels and need to make an adjustment, you have to go into the menu.
    Sony lets you store 4 sets of picture settings, but they are not linked to the inputs. If you change cable channels and the picture is "off" you can select one of your other stored sets of adjustments by toggling one button on the remote.
    Part of my research was checking out the separate mfg forums over at Home Theater Spot. I got the impression that the Toshiba needs more tweaking, that the Sony was better out of the box. All my set has really needed is a quick session with the AVIA calibration disc, in the user menu.
    Sony lets you display an HD or Progressive scan input as one of the pictures when you're using the PIP, I don't think Toshiba does but could be wrong.
     
  3. Bill Bradstreet

    Bill Bradstreet Stunt Coordinator

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    Thanks. That's the level of info I was after. I figure I'd be happy with either, but I can't leave well enough alone when it comes to this stuff. I like to feel I made an educated decision (not necessarily the correct decision of course).
     
  4. MichaelG

    MichaelG Second Unit

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    Bill, I noticed yesterday at BestBuy that they had the 57" model on sale for something like $3050 or so. May only be $200 or so off, but it made me think about it. I do like Toshiba, and own a pre-HD widescreen Toshiba and love it. But, after looking at it next to the Sony for the last few weeks at BestBuy I like the Sony better than the new Toshiba's (H81's). I guess that I am not sold on the upconvertion to 540p, I also like the option of 960i from 4801 that the Sony has. If you have a local BestBuy swing over there and see if they have it on sale.
     
  5. Bill Bradstreet

    Bill Bradstreet Stunt Coordinator

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    I may have to do just that! Hmm... so, for the new house what do I need more? a new RPTV or a washer/dryer? ;-) Tough decision. :-P
     
  6. Kishu

    Kishu Stunt Coordinator

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    Bestbuy carries the H81 series and not the HX81 sets of Toshiba. I have seen HX81 sets in SF Bay Area and they look good out of the box (i.e. without any calibrations)
    Many stores have poorly calibrated sets and hence one cannot make judgement calls on them as is. I think very few BB or CC stores carry calibrated TVs. If you are a serious shopper take the Avia Disc and make comparisons [​IMG]
    As far as Tosh Vs Sony is concerned, the costlier XBR2 is definitely a great set. For the same price range I think it is a toss-up between HX81 and HW40. But typically Sonys are better out of the box and have lesser quality issues unlike Tosh. You can get a good price on Sony HW by making Sears match lower prices.
    Cheers,
    Kishore
     
  7. MichaelG

    MichaelG Second Unit

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    Kishore, I actually went into the service mode on the Toshiba set at BB and at least did the convergence to check how sharp (no not sharpness setting) the picture was compared to the Sony. For both sets I turned the contrast down to about 35% of the full setting, color in the middle, brightness in the middle, and sharpness setting to about 20%. I thought the Sony picture looked better. I don't know how to get into service mode on the Sony to do full convergence so it (the Sony) didn't get the benefit, but to me still looked better. The reason I really like the Sony better though is because it will display a 480p or 960i (I didn't know that was a feature of this set until it was posted), and the Toshiba only does 540p (upconverted signal of 480i or 480p). I have been looking at the new Toshiba's vs other TV's for at least a few months now, IMO the Sony looks better. I would go over to hometheaterspot.com and look at the Sony forum and see what they say about the set, I'm sure they have lot's of reviews or opinions.

    I understand that the two sets I looked at were not completely calibrated, but I have a Toshiba widescreen now (love it) and did at least do the convergence on the floor model, but I still like the Sony better.
     
  8. Kishu

    Kishu Stunt Coordinator

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    I have not compared HX and H simultaneously but I believe HX is a better set compared to H. Maybe others can correct me. I donot think 480 to 540p is a significant factor unless you are REALLY observing wrt DVD movies. For NTSC/moving images it should not be major issue at all.
    I did notice in HX, when I used resolution patterns,that 540p upconversion had taken its toll [​IMG]
    My $0.02
    Cheers,
    Kishore
     
  9. Michael D. Bunting

    Michael D. Bunting Screenwriter

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    Make sure you check out the Sony and Toshiba forums over at:
    www.hometheaterspot.com
    Lots of good information and price info on both the Sony & Toshiba sets.
    I myself had a Toshiba 57HX81 - but returned/exchanged it for a Sony 57HW40 due to some "ghosting" issues that some of the Toshiba sets have been found to have recently. I'm really happy with the Sony now.
    Remember to check arounf for pricing on the Sony or the Toshiba. Don't pay anywhere close to $3K for either of these sets. They can be had for $2500 - $2700 fairly easily w/ price matching the competition. Try getting your local Sears to price match intenet prices for the Sony 57HW40 - some have gotten this to work.
    I bought the Toshiba 57HX81 for $2479.96 + tax
    Then bought the Sony 57 HW40 for $2680.99 + tax
    more info on the Sony w/ receipts:
    www.buntingonline.com/sears.htm
    Good luck!
    Mike
     
  10. Dave F

    Dave F Cinematographer

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    Michael,

    I am also returning my Toshiba (50HX81) due to bad ghosting. I had heard that the Sony's also exhibit this. Having both sets, what are your thoughts?

    Thanks,

    Dave
     
  11. Michael D. Bunting

    Michael D. Bunting Screenwriter

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    Dave

    I really noticed the "ghosting" on the Toshiba 57HX81. It got to be so bothersome (to me and my wife) that we started looking for the ghosts and not watching the movie! To some folks - this ghosting issue is a non-issue. Some see it - some don't!

    I had no other problems w/ the Toshiba other than the ghosting. Since I could return it - I did.

    The Sony. I have not noticed any ghosting or ringing on the Sony like some say is evident - at least not while watching DVD or DIRECTV. I did notice it with a blank screen while in 4:3 normal mode on the Sony. The vertical bar on the right definitely left a ghost or shadow to the right of the bar itself. This worried me for a moment - but when I tried to find the ghosting on DIRECTV or DVD - for about 3-4 days looking real hard - I just didn't see it - at all on my set!

    And with the Toshiba it was the first thing I noticed. No matter what input source I viewed - it was there.

    I'm very happy with the Sony.

    I prefer my DIRECTV picture on the Sony over the Toshiba and I prefer the DVD playback on the Sony set as well.

    I have self-calibrated my set w/ the Avia DVD two times and think I have an excellent picture. I'm hoping our (HTF) Gregg Loewen can improve this picture even more when he stops by to calibrate my TV next month or in February on his calibration tour. I know he will!

    Again - alot of folks are happy w/ the Toshiba. Some folks hate Sony. I thought I was happy w/ my Tosh until I noticed the ghosting - I'm now very happy with my Sony and I'm glad I returned the Toshiba.

    Good luck - Hope I was of some help!

    Mike
     
  12. Dave F

    Dave F Cinematographer

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    Thanks Michael - that helps quite a bit. I think I'll push for the Sony. [​IMG]
    -Dave
     
  13. Kishu

    Kishu Stunt Coordinator

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    Besides the Sony, I don't think Pioneers have such incidents of ghosting either...

    Cheers,

    Kishore
     
  14. MichaelG

    MichaelG Second Unit

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    The Pioneers are great, but I don't think that you can even get a non-elite for
     

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