I have done a lot of searching and although there is some dialog about the XBR7 on some of the other threads, there really isn't a thread on this model specifically.
I bought a 40" one this Saturday, and I am very happy with the purchase. I was comparing it to the XBR6, but I really liked the look of the side-mount speakers, and I couldn't afford the XBR8.
This is my first flat panel purchase. I have been saving for a long time!
Anyone else out there who owns one? I'd love to discuss calibration settings. I found that with the full black screen of the menu and in SD broadcasts, I can see grey clouding on the sides. This is only apparent after the set has been on for a few hours and is warm. I reduced the backlighting from 9 to 6 and that seemed to mostly take care of it, but since I work next to the store where I bought it, I asked the salesman who helped me out about it today. He suggested that is has inconsistent backlighting and that I should exchange it because the problem could get worse. I'll probably do that this weekend so I don't have to leave it in my car at work...
It is totally fine in full HD broadcasts - just when there is a black "nothing" on the screen like the menu.
Other threads have discussed this issue. Apparently it is pretty common.
Sound and picture otherwise are great. Our room is shallow and very wide. Viewing from the sides is no problem at all. Plus our old TV had serious glare problems in the afternoon. This one has none of that.
I'll post a photo of it tomorrow.
Love to chat with other XBR7 owners...