Well I finally opened the box and mounted the Philips in the bedroom (about 9-10 feet viewing distance).
First impressions were generally positive but I quickly discovered some issues which I'll highlight here:
1. DVD picture (using progressive scan) was excellent.
2. Cable HD picture (no way to test at present), but 480p Xbox looks simply amazing on this set (using component input and optical audio)!
3. SD picture actually fairly decent (and better than my Westinghouse 37" LCD) by a good bit.
4. Style is clean and the system is dead quite with no fans, (but it would be nice if the speakers were removable as I'll never use them).
5. Audio quality from built in speakers is fairly decent (although not important to me).
6. Rather cool looking remote (but with issues, see below).
1. No discrete codes for sleep and other functions on remote (this will likely be a killer for this set). As I was unable to even program many functions (like sleep) into my Harmony 880, this set will likely be returned. I simply don't wish to have multiple remotes anymore.
2. Won't allow for PBP using AV1 and AV2 inputs (probably must use HDMI or perhaps s-video for PBP (split screen) to work.
3. Seems to take an abnormally long time to turn on once the power button is pushed (upwards of 12 seconds). While that seems like a small time to wait, I've never seen a set take anywhere near that long to actually "light up" and can be a bit annoying when looking to grab some news or weather checks before running out the door.
While the set has some solid features and built in ATSC tuner and cablecard options (nice pluses), along with a marginally acceptable SD picture for a set of this type, I would otherwise keep it. HOWEVER, as it's a bedroom set, I do REQUIRE discrete access to functions such as SLEEP, SCREEN BRIGHTNESS/PRESETS... and this set does not apparently have them. If someone knows of a solution (or that I'm simply wrong on this matter), please let me know!
I'll probably continue to try it out for a little while longer, but if no solutions are found, will definitely be returning it. Perhaps I'll try the Costco Syntax 37" that goes on sale next Monday (I'm pretty much an LCD vs. Plasma guy). I'm actually a bit disappointed as I've had a Philips/Magnavox 65" rear projection set in my living room for many years and it's been reliable and provided a solid image.
Sorry about the brief details but since it's not a keeper for me (and likely means I won't be getting other Philips sets unless the lack of decreet code issue isn't the same across the line), I haven't given it that much of a test run as yet.
If however my issues aren't that important to you, I'd have to say at first glance this set is pretty decent.
Good luck all... my search continues!