Originally Posted by Stereodude
Your Hitachi was most likely crushing blacks when it did that. My 57S715 could be set so it has 0 luminance black, but the gamma curve would run off into la-la land (well beyond 3) at the bottom end and the lowest few shades of grey weren't distinguishable from black. If you set it up so that the lowest shades of grey were distinguishable from black and attempted a flatter gamma curve, black was definitely no longer 0 luminance and the set had a blue color cast that was very hard to eliminate. Eliminating the color cast required sacrificing grayscale accuracy in the 20-40IRE range toward the reddish side. Ultimately black ended up with as much (or more) glow than the F8500.
whatever the case, it looked phenomenal (at first, after a few years I had issues setting black level to show 'below black' so it was tough to dial in the perfect black level without having that reference) and dark scenes in a dark room have never looked as lifelike since. I know that in mixed content, those blacks skyrocketed, but I don't care, blacks always look dark with mixed content. what I do know is that a solid black screen looked exactly the same as the screen being off. and a solid black screen with only a few small areas having above black content looked like that above black content was the only thing that could be seen in my entire room. when I had the CRT, it was so rewarding to watch in the dark.
for ME, finding a display that shows black as black is the most important part of a good image. I can accept black crush, low ansi contrast, slight issues with color, input lag, dim(by other ppl's standards) whites, and even poor motion. I just can't accept 'blacks' that are the brightest thing in my room
overall, I would agree that the f8500 presents a 'better' image than my hitachi crt. but PERSONALLY I preferred the picture on the hitachi to the f8500 for the majority of how I use my TV's.
I can't find the receipt to confirm, but it was either a 46w500 or 46f500. my brother bought it, and I blame him for all the money I've spent on TV's since because I never used to care about video. I was the guy watching movies on a 27" crt with 6grand worth of speakers and amps around me, haha.