Issues with latest (1/12) Vizio firmware update - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 178 Old 01-31-2012, 08:02 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Thought I would start a new thread about this since I've had some problems with my Vizio TV (XVT553SV) since the latest firmware update, which was rolled out from December to January, and I've heard of others having problems too. I have the extended warranty so someone from there will be coming to look at my TV, but seems like this is something Vizio should get some more heat about since they claim there haven't been any other problems with the new firmware.

Main problem with mine is the frame rate. On filmed material, whether it be from any digital or analog media or broadcast, the frame rate becomes a bit jittery. This was a bit difficult to spot at first since some shots in movies are intentionally done like this, but after watching a few movies I'd seen multiple times and playing them over, and hearing of similar problems posted here, I've found this IS a problem with the TV, and it was NOT doing this before the firmware update. Turning film mode on or off doesn't make any difference, neither does game mode, and smooth motion of course still makes film look like video so that's not an option. If a disc is doing this I can pause it and when re-starting the problem will go away, and when scanning back there seems to be something in the picture that is flagging the TV to do this. (I'm wondering if this hasn't affected ALL TVs of this model but this is the sort of thing not all viewers would notice.)

Another frame rate problem I just discovered is with PAL DVDs, on a player that sends out an unconverted PAL signal. This TV can display PAL sources through its HDMI inputs, but after the update it is now forcing the "smooth motion" feature on, making filmed material look like video. This effect is amusing but of course should be kept off for serious viewing. I've found on PAL discs the effect stays on regardless of adjusting the smooth motion settings. Again, it was NOT doing this before the firmware update- I would have noticed this immediately if it were. One of my reasons for choosing this TV in the first place was its ability to display PAL properly.

A smaller issue my TV is having is with Pandora- when playing, normally you can hit the Exit button on the remote and stop it until you start it again- if you had the TV on a broadcast station, it would go back to that. After the update, when hitting Exit it now goes back to broadcast for about 5 seconds, then the screen goes black and the music from Pandora starts playing again. If you try to start another 'app' on the TV, it will start that up but again stop and revert to the black screen with Pandora playing. The only way out of it without resetting the power is to go back into Pandora and hit the Stop button. A minor problem compared to the others, but still annoying.

I've heard that others have had an excessive amount of reboots, where the TV will turn itself off for a few seconds while flashing the front light, then start up again. I've only had that happen one time during regular viewing since the update, but sounds like this is something else that should be looked into. I've heard some people from Vizio check this board so hopefully if enough people post they'll look into it further. I'd rather have another firmware update sent out that fixes these problems than have someone come over and likely not notice anything I'm talking about, and unnecessarily take the TV apart and replace stuff inside it.

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post #2 of 178 Old 01-31-2012, 08:53 PM
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sorry to hear about your problems, but I can assure you this isn't a first time ever, where firmware update mess things up. I had a BIOS update for my PC motherboard, that bricked it completely, I spend like 2 days before found working fix. Anyhow, have you checked if there is procedure to rollback the update to previous version by any chance? I know LG TV has rollback feature that requires some specific combination of key inputs on the remote. It may be best solution until they release fixed firmware in the future. I agree that technicians visit is probably pure waste of your time and their money.
Did you tell them the most likely issue is new firmware or they just don't listen?
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post #3 of 178 Old 02-01-2012, 01:02 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Some of their representatives claim that they haven't heard of any other problems with the firmware update. The person I talked to today at the warranty service number actually asked "And how was the firmware updated, over the phone?" Most of their people who interact with customers seem to have very little knowledge of the products. They get some praise from people for not being in India, but my impression is still rather poor. This isn't the first company I've called where I knew more about the products than the people on the other end however.

The frustrating thing about these TVs is there seems to be NO way to manually change the firmware on them. They're always connected to the internet (at least they're supposed to be, you could disconnect them but then you wouldn't be able to use any of the built-in internet functions) and the company sends updates out to each specific one based on its serial number. I've heard that you can get firmware on a USB stick and plug that into the TV and change it that way, I've heard of them sending those to people but I don't know how they got them. Again, the people on the phone seem to have little to no idea how these things work. (Long story but last year my TV was unnecessarily replaced due to another issue I had with the picture- it turned out to be inherent in the way the feature was designed, but since the phone reps didn't know what I was talking about they replaced the TV and it had the same problem so I just had to turn that feature off. Must have cost the company a few bucks to do that, and I actually liked the design of the older set better.)
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post #4 of 178 Old 02-01-2012, 04:39 PM
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Some firmware only apply to a specific manufacturer of one of the components in the TV and not to other manufascturer of that component. This why some firmware updates apply only to specific blocks of serial numbers for the same model number.
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post #5 of 178 Old 02-01-2012, 09:01 PM
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Reposting my comments from the set thread re: Pandora post-update:
---
Latest response [from Vizio tech support]:
"I believe this was done by design. This way people can still have the music from Pandora playing in the background while using other apps."

Which doesn't make sense on the face of it, but you can actually navigate to other apps (after confirming to stop "video playback" of Pandora - the audio persists).

Sounds like a borderline "undocumented feature" which it might be nice to read about if they provided any information at all regarding the update.
---
You can retain Pandora audio in some other VIA apps (for instance, flickr), however the implementation seems buggy at best (frequent crashes of VIA).

I for one could live without the "updates" in this firmware update - Skype and YouTube widgets are nice but not worth this trouble. Would happily go back to the previous firmware.

Note to OP: also found a thread on the VIA app-enabled TV's in general: http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showt...226591&page=24
Though it seems your primary issue is more related to the set's primary function (video playback) than VIA apps.

Note to Vizio: HOW ABOUT SOME DOCUMENTATION ON THESE FORCED UPDATES?
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post #6 of 178 Old 02-01-2012, 11:56 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Yes, I've posted on the other Vizio threads but started this one since I want to get someone's attention about this, and seems to be a thing that's affected several TVs. I still don't think the Pandora issue is a "feature" because when I try to start some apps like Vudu or Netflix, it starts those up but again goes back to the black screen with music. If it were intentional, seems like it would keep playing the music until you started a movie, but it never lets you get that far. If you switch to an input, the screen still goes black when the music comes back on.

The company doing the warranty service is called Precision TV, and doing a Google search brought up many negative comments about them. They were supposed to call me back today to set the visit up but I never heard from anyone, so will have to call them back tomorrow- the main complaint about this company seems to be that they don't call back when they say they're going to. I just hope they're competent enough to fix the thing (had an unbelievably bad experience with Circuit City's "service" many years ago which resulted in a TV being practically ruined, which is why I wasn't sad at all when they went out of business!) Again, I don't think a serviceperson really needs to come over (unless they REALLY know about these TVs), a flash drive with a firmware update that will make it not do this would probably be sufficient.
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post #7 of 178 Old 02-02-2012, 07:52 AM
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I'm also experiencing the same issue after the update, and describing it as a frame rate drop seems to be the best description so far.

In addition, the new firmware doesn't allow for the removal of all the widgets any more. I experienced the random vizio reboot issue in the past, and my solution was to remove all the widgets. That worked perfectly, and I never had a reboot after that for 6+ months. With the new firmware, however, several widgets cannot be removed any more. I got my first reboot yesterday. So, my solution of removing the widgets won't work any more.

I really hate features that cannot be turned off.
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post #8 of 178 Old 02-02-2012, 12:39 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Yeah, they locked in Netflix, Vudu and Amazon VOD so they can't be deleted. Wouldn't be so annoying if they didn't have a limited number of widgets you can have at one time.

Just called the warranty company and they've ordered a new main board, which means I'll have to get my place cleaned up enough for them to take the TV apart again. (The main board was already replaced a few months ago when the VIA apps quit working altogether, you couldn't bring them up with the button or anything.) If this doesn't fix it I'll have to go a step higher than Vizio's usual customer service people. I'm REALLY annoyed with how it's forcing smooth motion on my PAL movies, making them look like sitcoms or soaps!
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post #9 of 178 Old 02-02-2012, 02:33 PM
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For those who are buying presently, I'd recommend NOT connecting to the internet if/until this is all sorted out, that way no update can be installed. Luckily I don't have any of these problems with the new firmware but if anyone I know gets a vizio, I'll make that exact recommendation to them. Sure they won't be able to use the widgets but most have a bluray player or a game console that have the same apps and those won't exhibit the stuttering and other odd behavior that ruins movies and games.

Good job posting in this one thread, now you all need to email this link to Vizio repeatedly until they do something about it. I've bought 7 of their sets, sold 5 locally and still have 2, and none of them have had problems, but I won't support them in the future if they don't atleast show they care about their customers!!
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post #10 of 178 Old 02-09-2012, 03:57 PM
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My XVT553SV has firmware C7.0.1.0S, updated on December 28, 2011. After that, our problem with video freezing and spontaneous reboots started for the first time (we've had the TV since late 2010). Others have reported reboot problems even before this latest firmware update, but for us the firmware update definitely made the problem worse.

Starting soon after we got the TV, we've had the HDMI handshake problem during warm up. For the first five minutes or so on 1080i or 1080p sources the screen is heavily pixelated. After the warm up period it stabilizes and is fine after that. It also does it on 720p sources, but the effect is much less noticable (more like "swigglies" in high contrast edges). That does not appear to have been affected (better or worse) by the latest firmware update.

Both the HDMI handshake problem and the freeze/reboot problem are related to cold startup. The reboots occur very frequently (maybe 1 out of 3 times we turn on the TV), but always during the first minute or two of use. It seems to occur most frequently on 1080i/p sources during the handshake pixelation period, making me think that the two issues are somewhat related.

I'd love to see a firmware update that addresses both issues.
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post #11 of 178 Old 02-13-2012, 06:21 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Well, I had the main board replaced today and the TV still has the SAME problems! When turned on YouTube and Skype are already there, so whatever introduced the problem to the TV likely stayed with them. Doing the "clean storage" doesn't get rid of them nor does it solve the picture problem. I've deleted all the apps as well to see if that made any difference, but it doesn't. Vizio's warranty department is separate from their main customer service department, and they're closed for the night so I will have to wait until tomorrow to contact them. I tried telling the regular customer service people anyways but they were little help (the guy I talked to didn't even know what PAL and NTSC were- how do you get a job with a TV company without knowing that?) The two Level 3 people I spoke to last year are no longer there either. Feeling very annoyed right now but will wait til I can talk to the warranty people tomorrow. If they aren't any help I will have to call the main company in Irvine.
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post #12 of 178 Old 02-14-2012, 04:58 PM - Thread Starter
 
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They are sending Precision TV out again to "do something else" with it. Vizio still won't admit that this is a widespread problem.
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post #13 of 178 Old 02-14-2012, 11:31 PM - Thread Starter
 
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The people on the phone didn't seem interested when I mentioned that I'd seen several other mentions of this problem. I guess what's going to happen now is someone a little more knowledgable will come over and "diagnose" what the problem is. I'll be sure to have a lot of movies ready to show when they do. Hopefully whoever comes will actually see the problem; I could see someone (like former Circuit City 'technicians' I've dealt with in the past) at least pretending there's nothing wrong.

It really seems to do this a lot when playing laserdiscs more than anything else. I've also noticed it on a few CED videodiscs (yes, I know that's getting really obscure, but I collect those and watch them.) All my old equipment is running through my Pioneer receiver and sending a 1080P signal to the TV via HDMI.

Latest more-recent media I've noticed this on- My Bloody Valentine DVD (original Paramount release) does it about 51 minutes into the movie, when the girl is alone and a bunch of suits drop down from the ceiling then the killer gets her. I think the quick cutting triggers the weird motion, it goes back to normal the scene after that.

Another one is Scott Pilgrim Vs. The World on Blu-Ray- does it during chapter 10 when he's walking through the snow and the girl comes flying out of nowhere. The motion jitters after he punches her and she says "You punched me in the boob!" This disc is a pain to cue up though since it takes several minutes of loading.
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post #14 of 178 Old 02-15-2012, 09:19 PM - Thread Starter
 
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If you have an HD-DVD player, an easy test for the stuttering effect is the Warner HD-DVD intro that's at the start of most of their discs. There is a lot of quick cutting that triggers it on and off- during the shot from "Phantom of the Opera" at the start of it when the camera pans down, it starts stuttering there then goes back to normal after the Harry Potter clip. Noticed it stutter again during the "Million Dollar Baby" and Batman Begins clips. I've seen this intro almost a billion times so I know what it's supposed to look like- these scenes weren't intentionally shot that way.
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post #15 of 178 Old 02-15-2012, 11:44 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Uh, somebody said that already. You even copied their spelling error.

Anyways, found a good movie on HD-DVD to test this problem with- Charlie and the Chocolate Factory. Does it so many times it would take too long to list them all, but easiest is skipping right to chapter 2 and you'll see it during the shot of the town with the kid going into the house. Played this several times and it always did it. I have the same movie on standard DVD though and it did NOT do it on that copy, so probably only the HD-DVD will trigger it. I watched this disc before the firmware update and it definitely did not have that problem then.
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post #16 of 178 Old 02-17-2012, 05:08 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Another test- Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets on Blu-Ray, checked the first 5 minutes of this and it goes in and out of 'stutter mode' several times.
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post #17 of 178 Old 02-19-2012, 06:01 AM
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I'm noticing this problem sometimes too, but I've only noticed it with blu-rays that are from UK so far. Never a problem when watching a TV show or playing Wii.
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post #18 of 178 Old 02-19-2012, 07:03 AM
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When a display can not keep up with its graphic input it drops frames and then will stutter in order to catch up. The dropped frames can be caused by problems with either the graphic or audio driver, since audio is processed first. The problem normally occurs when handling high motion content or slow panning of scenes.
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post #19 of 178 Old 02-20-2012, 08:53 AM
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Sent an e-mail to support, posted on their facebook wall, and sent them a tweet.
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post #20 of 178 Old 02-20-2012, 01:10 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I don't see anything about this on their Facebook wall- did you get the issue resolved, or did they just delete it?

I just had the tech from Precision TV come back and while I was willing to give him the benefit of a doubt before, I have to say now he is rather incompetent. The way he spoke I couldn't understand many of the words he was saying- I wish I had recorded the conversation. I showed him the problem coming from both my Blu-Ray and HD-DVD players, he could see the problem but insisted that was how the players were sending the signal out and the TV was just displaying what it was getting from them (at least that's what I THINK he was trying to say.) Then he said I needed to "adjust my player to conform to the TV"- I handed him the remote and told him go ahead, and he didn't know what to do then. He then suggested my receiver was causing the problem as it was introducing a "signal delay", and that I should instead hook the players directly to the TV and use the TV's audio output to the receiver. That just about destroyed his credibility right there- obviously if I hooked them up that way, the lossless Dolby formats would be down-rezzed to standard Dolby Digital and any DTS or multi-channel PCM tracks would be downmixed to 2-channel. After he left I hooked the player's HDMI directly to the TV anyways, and the stuttering problem was still there. My Pioneer receiver actually doesn't seem to "process" HDMI video at all.

I called Vizio right after that and told them about the experience; they said they'd like to wait until Precision TV enters everything into their records which won't happen for about 24 hours, and then possibly have another service company come look at my TV. We'll have to see how that works out. Needless to say I'm pretty annoyed; if I had more money right now I'd probably just go buy another brand of TV and sell this one if or when it gets fixed.

EVERYONE else who's been having this problem, PLEASE post what you've done about it here. I still think whoever's in charge of the firmware updates isn't owning up to something that's caused this. The more that's posted here, the less anyone can deny that there's a problem.
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post #21 of 178 Old 02-20-2012, 09:33 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Well, not sure if anyone's reading this, but in case you're keeping track of material that makes the TV do this- don't know how many people have "Short Circuit" on Blu-Ray, but if you skip to 1 hour 15 minutes into that, there's a scene where first the robot busts into a bar, then a guy jumps on top of the bar and fires a gun which shows as a bright flash, followed by someone else breaking glass over his head. It seems like the gun flashing is triggering the TV, as I've played this several times over and it's been doing that every time. Other scenes I've played repeatedly have at least some of the time not made the TV go into the weird frame rate. It does go back to normal if you pause it for a second. I even tried this on TWO different Blu-Ray players, and yes Mister TV Service Guy, I tried hooking one of them directly up to the TV's HDMI input rather than the receiver. I lost my DTS-HD Master Audio when I did that of course, but the picture problem still persisted. If you let the scene keep playing a few more seconds, after everyone runs into the cars and starts chasing the frame rate goes back to normal.
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post #22 of 178 Old 02-21-2012, 11:11 PM
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Please watch this and tell me if your screen does this!. Go to YouTube and put xvt3d554sv problem, sorry cant put link, you will see a video that shows inside Xbox watch that and tell me if that's what yours is doing. I have also just got a main board but did not fix the problem. I'm getting another one sent to me that vizparts said was never ever in a tv.... Yeah till I get it and everything is the same. Oh yeah my tv is a XVT3D554SV and my problem started when my firmware updated and gave me skype, YouTube and a messed up screen. And when they said to you they never heard about this BS!! I have called them and been fighting with them sence DEC 18 2011 and they won't tell the truth about there fk up. Who yeah!!!! You guys are going to laugh at this one. They told me even if it was a firmware that it's my fault for downloading it, that there's a choice to download or not. Really? When on turn my tv on it was downloading right away. I wish vizio was still a generic because when they weren't well known is when they maid good TVs. Still have there first ever model with not 1 problem and there's well over 100k of hours put on it.
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post #23 of 178 Old 02-22-2012, 12:49 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Is your video the one with a paused game and a box that says "Youtube Uploading" on it? I don't have an XBox but use my laptop computer on this TV a lot, it sometimes flickers to black when using that but only for less than a second. The problem there is most likely with my computer, it's improved since I got a different HDMI cable for it. I've never had it black out as long as in that video.

Vizio contacted a more reputable repair service in the area so they're going to come check it out now. Hopefully they'll at least acknowledge that this IS a problem. I could not believe that other guy, he was on par with the people you'd get from Circuit City or any cable company!
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post #24 of 178 Old 02-22-2012, 02:04 AM
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My screen blinks for half a second also at random times. Some times 1 time in 5 minuets some times it won't do it all day. But the screen shake problem is always there I'll put link
here to make it Easier for you to see let me know if this is sort of the problem your having
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post #25 of 178 Old 02-22-2012, 02:15 AM
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Try to watch the inside Xbox logo it does this on every input besides when my watching cable tv from wall no box
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post #26 of 178 Old 02-22-2012, 02:16 AM
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post #27 of 178 Old 02-22-2012, 04:19 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Link doesn't work. Nice username by the way, but you may want to proofread a bit before posting, also cable TV is a rip-off

My TV's problem does happen on broadcasts, noticed it on "Everybody Hates Chris" last night. Also seems apparent during "The Office" though the station here that carries that has a huge annoying logo onscreen making it hard to watch anyways.
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post #28 of 178 Old 02-22-2012, 04:25 AM
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Link works just click it. I rarely watch cable but never saw it on there. My package just came with this new main board. I'll will message back here after I'm done.
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post #29 of 178 Old 02-22-2012, 08:34 AM
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Might be a related issue but not the one that is mentioned here. The stuttering makes it look like the framerate dropped to about 10-15fps, everything looks like it's in slow motion almost.

The response I got from twitter just basically said that they release a new firmware ASAP if they find something wrong.

Also just got done with Vizio chat (useless of course) and they said there are no documented issues with the firmware.
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post #30 of 178 Old 02-22-2012, 10:23 AM
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It using a PC it is important to know what the CPU utilization is when the system is dropping frames or stuttering. If it is low 10-25% that would indicate that the graphics chip is doing most of the work.
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