Sony KV-36FV27

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Allan Mack, Jun 13, 2001.

  1. Allan Mack

    Allan Mack Supporting Actor

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    I just got my new KV-36FV27 and like it very much. However, I find that on some movies, the picture is very dim, and I have to crank up the brightness level in order see any detail in dark or shadowy scenes.
    I calibrated the set using the THX Opti-Mode on my Toy Story 2 DVD, and while it works fine with that movie, other movies are far too dark and dim (such as "Witness" and "Good Will Hunting", both anamorphic versions). I find that I have to increase the brightness level to maximum (+15) on the Panasonic DVD-RV31 in order to see details in shadowy areas. (My DVD player has built-in brightness control, so I am not actually using the brightness control on the TV.) Other movies, such as "Tootsie" and "Ben-Hur", only require a +7 increase in brightness. The movie "Superman", however, requires no increase in brightness at all. These movies were all viewed with all the lights turned off at night.
    I never had to do that with my 9-inch Sony and so I am wondering if there is something wrong with my new Sony 36 incher.
    Don't get me wrong--once the brightness is cranked up, the picture is awesome, but I am wondering if I am shortening the life of the tube if I have to do this for every second movie I watch. I'm also afraid that the set will get dimmer as it ages, as all TVs do, and by then even cranking the brightness to maximum won't help. I plan to keep this set for at least five years or more.
    I noticed in the store that the 32 inch WEGAs were consistently brighter than the 36 inch WEGAs, even with the same settings. Are 36-inch and bigger direct-view tubes inherently dimmer than smaller ones? Or would I have to upgrade to the 36XBR450 to get a brighter tube? I don't really want to get a rear-projection set, as I prefer the wider viewing area of a direct-view set. And I don't really want anything smaller than 36 inches because a lot of the movies I watch are letterboxed-anamorphic widescreen. (I also watch a lot of 4:3 movies and TV shows on DVD, so I still prefer a 4:3 set.)
    Right now, I use mostly the "Vivid", "Standard" and "Sport" picture modes. The "Movie" mode is far too dim to be useful. I have turned off Velocity Modulation and also decreased the sharpness in all modes.
    Is this dimness something I can fix by going into the service mode? I really do not want to do this if I can avoid it. Any help or comments would be appreciated.
     
  2. Rob N

    Rob N Agent

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    Allen - I have the 36-FV26 (last years version of your set). I suggest you get a copy of Avia or Video Essentials to run a full calibration on your new set. THX opti-mode is a good start but to truly get your set looking as good as it can (short of a full ISF calibration) you need one of these calibration DVD's. Keep in mind that a properly calibrated set will likely appear darker to the average person because most people watch with their TV's set way too high, its just something we're used to seeing.
    Get one of these calibration DVD's and run the tests. When properly calibrated you'll find that at first the picture looks too dark but after a week or so you'll begin to appreciate the greater level of detail and more accurate color reproduction. Keep in mind that the room lighting will have an effect on how your set looks (too bright/dim). If you have further questions I'd be happy to help. Once properly calibrated these set's are beautiful.
     
  3. Ken Stuart

    Ken Stuart Second Unit

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    Allan - a more descriptive Subject line might have gotten you more replies. Since the "27" just came out, few people have it or are interested in that particular model, so they haven't opened the thread. Merely adding " - not bright enough ?? " to the end would have indicated that you needed help, rather than just chat about features.
    I have a new KV-32FS12 and have not expreienced anything similar to what you describe - although I have not been making a point of looking for detail in dark areas. The set is definitely brighter than my previous KV-27V10. I have brightness set to something like 40-50%.
    You might want to see if you can get an Authorized Sony Technician (doesn't have to work directly for Sony) out there to look at it. This should be covered under warranty, but you might want to ask if they will have to charge you if they find that "there is nothing wrong".
     
  4. Perry Jonkheer

    Perry Jonkheer Second Unit

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    Rob,
    I just purchased the KV-36FS13 and am awaiting delivery. I have the Toy Story 2 DVD as well. Will the THX calibration suffice for this set? I know the AVIA and Video Essentials discs are mainly used for PJTV. Thoughts??
     
  5. Phil Iturralde

    Phil Iturralde Screenwriter

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  6. Rob N

    Rob N Agent

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    Perry - A calibration with Avia or VE will make a noticeable difference. THX opti-mode is a small step in the right direction (IMO). I toyed around with it on my Terminator 2 UE DVD but found that Avia was much more complete. IMO, on a scale of 1 - 10: "eyeballing" is a 3, THX is a 5, Avia/VE is an 8, and ISF is a 10. At least as far as making the set as good as it can be is concerned.
    I found the Wega's to be better then average out of the box (Standard and Movie modes). But, after I spent a weekend calibrating with Avia it was much improved. Avia runs about $40-$50 retail but, I think can be found for under $30 on-line. It may sound steep but, if you want a very good looking picture it is well worth it. Some places do rent Avia and VE but you are probably better off buying it. You'll go back to it several times "tweaking" the set until you have it just right.
     
  7. Brian Harnish

    Brian Harnish Screenwriter

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    I would like to add my own enthusiasm regarding Avia/Video Essentials. I calibrated my old direct view with Video Essentials and I was literally AMAZED with the improvement in the picture. Halos around letters were minimized; edge ringing was also minimized, among other problems. I can't even watch other peoples' uncalibrated sets anymore without commenting at least once about how much improvement Video Essentials/Avia will bring to their picture. Trust me -- Avia/Video Essentials is worth EVERY penny [​IMG]
    - Brian
     
  8. Allan Mack

    Allan Mack Supporting Actor

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    Hi everyone,
    Thanks for posting all your responses. I have since discovered that my particular Panasonic DVD-RV31 produces a dark image out of the box, and has to be calibrated in order to deliver a great picture. Other sources (cable, VCR) had no problems with brightness. Having said that, the KV-36FV27 produces an EXCELLENT image, especially in 16:9 mode with anamorphic movies. My unit has NO problems with geometry, band lines or bowing. I would give it my highest recommendation.
    However, since then, I have done more research and am now getting a 36XBR450. I saw both of them side-by-side today for the first time, and the 36XBR450 definitely has a smoother picture, with almost no scan lines compared to the 36FV27.
    You can read more of my comments on the comparison here:
    http://www.hometheaterforum.com/uub/...ML/007290.html
    Again, thanks for all the help...
     

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