The OFFICIAL KD-36XS955 Thread... - Page 11 - AVS Forum
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post #301 of 965 Old 02-15-2005, 07:09 AM
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Just find a stand that can hold 240lbs.

www.studiorta.com makes some (that's what I was going to get).

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post #302 of 965 Old 02-15-2005, 03:50 PM
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Quote:


Originally posted by auntie_ellen
Is the KV-36XS955 too heavy to go into a standard entertainment center? Is the Sony stand necessary? Thanks!


The 36XS955 comes with the free Sony stand at Best Buy and through Sony Style. The XS955 weighs 234 pounds if I remember correctly. If you want to put it into an existing entertainment center or one you're looking at, you'll have to check with the manufacturer and find out the weight capacity of the entertainment center. Any reputable manufacturer should have that information. Also, you'll need an opening that is at least 40" wide.

Here's the TV at Sony Style with the stand.

http://www.sonystyle.com/is-bin/INTE...4%22to36%22TVs

You can call the stand manufacturer to get an extra glass shelf for the stand so you're not stuck with only one shelf.
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post #303 of 965 Old 02-15-2005, 04:00 PM
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if you go to best buy's web site,they have dozens of stands that hold 240 lb. sets

Life, Sometimes you wake up in the middle of it !
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post #304 of 965 Old 03-01-2005, 08:08 PM
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What settings or tips have any of you figured out since getting your 36xs955?

Just curious about what others have found works best for the various adjustments.

Has anyone noticed a spouse lock-out in the menu? Everytime I turn the tv on, my wife has it set to "vivid"!
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post #305 of 965 Old 03-02-2005, 04:16 AM
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I am using an existing stand that used to hold my Panny 32. It's made by Legends Furniture, model CT125DW. It is made of 3/4" SOLID oak plywood, and not the particle board that is often used in A/V furniture, especially those found in electronics stores like BB or CC.

It's just slightly wider than the Sony, and although at 20" deep it means the back end of the Sony hangs over by 5 inches, it's not a problem as the majority of the weight is to the front, where the biggest part of the tube is. In fact the Panny that it replaced actually stuck out further, and for a larger "footprint" than the Sony.

The cabinet is large enough to hold my home theater receiver, an MD recorder, my trusty JVC S-VHS unit, a Sony DVD changer, a Sony DVD recorder, a JVC Component Video Switcher, and a SA8000HD cable box/DVR. And there's still enough room for another two or three components. The components are arranged side by side, with a 3/4" SOLID oak vertical divider panel down the middle giving crucial extra strength to hold up this beast.

The model comes with two smoked glass doors, but I got mine cheap because one glass door was broken and there was a scratch on one side. I ended just removing the other glass door, and I prefer it that way so that the components don't overheat. The back is made of thinner oak plywood to give the cabinet additional strength, and I just drilled some large holes for the cables to pass through.

Although mine was a scratch/dent model, I could have gotten an unblemished one for about the same price or less as one made of particle board. The sticker on the back shows a suggested retail price of $280.
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post #306 of 965 Old 03-12-2005, 07:08 AM
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Well, it looks like my 36xs955 is going back to Best Buy. It worked fine for 10 days, but then decided to turn itself off with a nice bright flash and then flashed the standby light 7 times over and over. Unplugging the set and plugging it back in allowed me to turn the set back on and watch indefinitley. That was until two days ago. Since then it turns itself off in the same manner randomly at intervals of 30 seconds to ?? hours. Every time, the set must be unplugged and reset.

I can't seem to find info here on resolving this problem. Even the 34xbr960 guys never seem to post anything after the problem was fixed or the set was returned.

So the question is do I chance schlepping a 240# tv an hour to Best Buy to try again or do I bail out on the idea of a Sony altogether. Even if the next set works fine, who is to say that it will after day 91. It bugs me that according to SonyStyle's knowledge base that this sort of problem is normal. At this point I'm just not sure...
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post #307 of 965 Old 03-16-2005, 01:31 AM
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I'm sorry to hear about the trouble the set is giving you.

Considering the sheer size of that set, I'd get a service tech to come and take a look. That is, if everything looked great before this happened. I can't imagine that it would be that big of a deal to fix.
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post #308 of 965 Old 03-22-2005, 07:05 PM
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DwainW-

I had some similarly mysterious on/off problems. My wife was accidently hitting the sleep timer button on the "less than great" remote. Worth a try!
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post #309 of 965 Old 03-23-2005, 12:51 AM
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>

aukwood,

How's geometry on your set? For example, when watching 16:9 format, do the border lines look straight? Reason I'm asking is that quite a few posters indicated geometry issues with the XS and XBR960 tubes.
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post #310 of 965 Old 03-23-2005, 09:30 AM
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Here is the continuation of my story for those that are interested. The next two paragraphs detail the exchange of my set, if you are only interested in my experience with the second set, skip to paragraph #4.

I ended up returning my first set to Best Buy. I talked to several stores in the northern Virginia area that were supposed to have them in stock per the BB website. If I were going to drive an hour+ to a BB, I wanted to make sure they had one ready for exchange. The story was similar for every store, "Our computer says we have one (or two), but we can't find it in our warehouse." With one store, I even asked for the manager right off the bat to maybe avoid potential phone-lackey problems. In this case the manager said, "I'm sure I saw the last one go out the door this morning." I contacted all but one store in the area, and decided that if they didn't have one that I was just going to return it, so I loaded up the set and headed for Herndon. Once again, they said that they were supposed to have two, but could find none. However, they were 'nice' enough to call around to other stores to see who might have one. Interestingly enough, two were confirmed in-the-box at the same store whose manager was sure that they had just sold out. Hmmm. I was assured that if I went to this second store, that it would be nearly impossible for me not to get a new set.

With this other store only 20 minutes away, I decided to make the drive and change my modus operandi. Instead of arriving and asking if they had a set in stock for exchange, I just told customer service I was returning the set. And if they happened to have one, I would let them talk me into exchanging it. I'm not sure if it was my new method, or just happenstance, but this time it worked. They took my lazy $1699 set and took it as a return, assuring me that my $1 stand was mine to keep for $1+shipping. Then they sold me a brand new $1699 set complete with a $100 mail-in-rebate. Ooohhh, is this why noone wanted to exchange? At any rate, the helpful customer service rep talked me into buying into the BB Value Zone (or whatever it's called) card and I would get another rebate on this purchase and all future purchases for a year. This purchase alone would net me about $50. So with $150 in new found savings, I decided the $200 4-year service plan was now a good option. In the end, I feel like the hassle of returning the set was worth being able to buy a 4-year service plan for $50. After my first XS experience, it will give me a renewed peace of mind.

As for the second set, this is day 10 and no problems yet. The geometry on this set is quite satisfactory except for a downward bending of the top right corner when watching 1080i. I figure I'll have to play with fixing that when I adjust the overscan anyway. Overscan on this new set is still 10% on the sides, but that is much better than the 12-14% horizontal and 12%vertical on the first set. But what is surprising to me is the striking amount of difference between the gray scales of the two sets. The first set's Normal setting icy blue, particularly on the bright end, while the Warm setting was red, red, red. I never measured to see just what the color temperatures looked like on that set (nor the new one yet either), but even if it were close to 6500K, the red component was skewed way too high. I found it unwatchable. The new set on the other hand has a reasonable normal setting if you are accustomed to blue TVs. It certainly is not as bad a your average TV. But the Warm setting on this set seems much more natural than on the first one. It may/will require some tweaking once I know this set is here to stay, but even out of the box it is not bad at all. Overall, this set seems a bit sharper than the first set as well. It just seems remarkable that there would be so much difference between two sets of the same model, particularly a higher end model like the 36xs955.

So the question remains, do I regret not going with the XBR or the 34" XS? Well, going in to this, I assumed I would be watching a 34xbr right now. I've owned two different XBRs over the last 15 years, a 27xbr55 from 1991-1996 and a 32xbr96s from 1996-2001. Both gave me years of trouble free performance and were head and shoulders above all competition. The XBRs once were a breed all there own. Not only did they have their own tubes, but the power supplies, control boards, comb filters, etc. were exclusively XBR, and the results showed under comparison. However the XBR now doesn't seem to offer as much over the XS line: A few extra frills like PIP and iLink, but nothing substantial as far as build or picture quality. Sure you have a little more control over DRC and the digital comb filter is 10 bit vs. some unknown quantity (who says it's not 10 bit also?), but in the end the 34XS and the 34XBR have very similar pictures. In fact, there was a bigger difference in the two 36XSs that I've owned than I saw in the 34XBR/XSs I compared. In the end, I couldn't for myself justify the extra $200 for the XBR. So the 34XS it was, until I started comparing the 34XS to the 36XS for another $200-300 savings. Again, the pictures in HD (where it counts for me) were very similar. Maybe the geometry is a little better on the 34", or maybe it's just that the top and bottom edges of the 34" picture are not visible. Either way, it's still a toss up to my eyes. Plus the 36 offered a free stand that I was expecting to pay at least $200 for or spend 10+ hours planning and building myself.

The bottom line for my choice of 4:3 is that the 36" is a bigger tube. Now I know that best picture is slightly smaller on the 36, but the 4:3 material stands up to the 36" size -- any bigger and SD starts getting ugly. The 16:9 picture could certainly stand to be larger, but unfortunately there isn't a 16:9 option larger than 34" anymore. If there was, I would certainly want to go that route. But with equivalent picture quality and near equvalent 16:9 picture size, why not save the bucks and go with the 4:3? Lesser issues include things like burn-in, which I don't really expect, but if it does occur, it will only be visible on the less important 4:3 picture rather than the more important 16:9 (lesson learned from 16:9 Toshiba RPTV that replaced the last XBR). This would not be the case on a 34". If this copy of the 36XS955 works flawlessly for the next five years, I'll be very happy with my decision.
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post #311 of 965 Old 03-23-2005, 02:32 PM
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You made the right decision--if you want a 36-inch you better buy them while they still last!
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post #312 of 965 Old 03-28-2005, 07:05 AM
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Just bought this TV and we are very happy with it. Just want to point out that if you use your sony card at sonystyle you get 10% off thru March 31. (they give you 10 points for every $1 you spend).
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post #313 of 965 Old 03-28-2005, 02:11 PM
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DwainW,

I just wanted to say that I had a similar experience to yours. I had to send back a faulty 36XS955 for a stange discoloration in the top left corner. The replacement set I recieved seems to look stunningly better then the first and has exceeded my expectations.
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post #314 of 965 Old 03-29-2005, 11:11 AM
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Quote:


Originally posted by gopher2k
DwainW,

I had to send back a faulty 36XS955 for a stange discoloration in the top left corner. The replacement set I recieved seems to look stunningly better then the first and has exceeded my expectations.

More power to you! But this "strange discoloration," which also affected my set, was easily corrected with the top-left LANDING code-group in the service menu (first four items). In fact, whoever set it up was obviously not having a good day! I reset all four corners to 128 (no correction) and then redid it to my satisfaction. I really wanted to save myself having to return it for another pig in a poke, if I could. Who knows, the new one could have been worse!

I suspect the workers assigned to adjust each set are given 41.7 seconds to accomplish everything, to maintain their quota! ('Scuse the cynicism . . .)

KenTech
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post #315 of 965 Old 03-29-2005, 12:09 PM
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KenTech, did you find the location of those parameters in the service manual, or did you have an online source? I have a copy of the service menu spreadsheet for the 34xbr910, and I don't know what may be different with the 36xs955.
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post #316 of 965 Old 03-29-2005, 03:59 PM
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ok. this is probably a strange question, but you guys are my best shot. is this tv able to letterbox videogames that are made widescreen?
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post #317 of 965 Old 03-30-2005, 04:13 PM
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Quote:


Originally posted by DwainW
KenTech, did you find the location of those parameters in the service manual, or did you have an online source? I have a copy of the service menu spreadsheet for the 34xbr910, and I don't know what may be different with the 36xs944.

I first found them in the widely-circulating spreadsheet for the late-model HS, XS, and XBR sets.

In the chart I have, the group is called LANDING and the codes are LT, LB, RT, and RB. Default settings are 128 for each, which is zero effect. Then you tweak, as required. If your set has different group names for the codes, the code-names themselves might be similar. Look for the above names.

These are not convergence controls but four magnetic coils that correct purity in the extreme corners. I don't know how completely different models sets do this. Did your finger slip just a bit, and you really meant XS955? Then it's easy, as above.

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post #318 of 965 Old 03-31-2005, 08:29 AM
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Thanks for the info, I'll take a look for those asap. And yes, I meant 36xs955. Sorry for the confusion.
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post #319 of 965 Old 03-31-2005, 02:42 PM
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Ok here's the deal with me. I currently have a 32HS420, but when watching HDTV or DVDs or even when playing current and future widescreen video games I find the 29" viewable 16:9 area to be much too small. But the 28-29" 4:3 picture on the 34XBR960 is too small for 4:3 viewing on that set. I would really love to get my hands on a new 40XBR800, but seeing as how unlikely that is, is it more worthwhile for me to get the 36XS955 for both 4:3 and 16:9 viewing or keep the 32HS420 for 4:3 and pick up a 34XBR960 for 16:9 viewing? The reason that this choice is hard is that 32" 4:3 does feel a bit small now (although still livable) and I notice that on my friends 40XBR800 that his SD and ofcourse the HD/DVD sources look better than my 32HS420. Would the 36XS955 provide a better overall picture (one closer to his 40" in quality) than the 32HS420? Or is this just my eyes fooling me and is the 32HS420 just as good for SD and 480P(gaming) 4:3 viewing? I wish the 40" was still around, then I wouldn't have to go through this, lol.
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post #320 of 965 Old 04-07-2005, 08:44 PM
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ok fellow KD-36XS955 owners please help me out
sorry for the basic lingo but I am by no means a videophile

just received this set today replacing my almost 10 year old 27" RCA F27675BC (no I don't think the BC is for Before Christ)

anyways I have the set hooked up to Directv
on my old 27"er the pic looked great (I only moved up because I wanted a larger, modern, flat screen, set capable of HD for the future)
with the new Sony the first thing that struck me was the blurring and lack of clarity in any on screen text and lack of overall picture sharpness.
I was watching the college hockey game on ESPN and the logo/score inlays on the screen did not look sharp nor did the overall picture...found it really hard to read the names on the back of the jerseys. Baseball looked even worse. This was not just limited to sports programming of course.

Any initial thoughts about some adjustments I could make or is this just a limitation of the directv feed being made increasingly visable on a larger set (like I said my old set looked great)? Does 9 more inches of picture really sacrifice so much detail? I have played with the basic settings and haven't found a cure. I have not touched the service menu a) because I don't know how b) because I don't want to play around with stuff I have little knowledge of.

many more questions to come I'm sure
thanks in advance for hopefully helping me start to improve this to my liking
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post #321 of 965 Old 04-08-2005, 07:51 PM
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made a few tweeks and things look slightly better than last night
the yellow digital clock against the black background on '24' (rerun tonight) looked sharp as a tack

but the blurring/out of focus effect is most visable when watching sports programming
very hard to read names and numbers on jerseys
and made even worse on sports highlight shows like Sportscenter where the feed is not live

still looking for some tips on how to possibly 'clear' this up on the KD-36XS955
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post #322 of 965 Old 04-09-2005, 02:43 PM
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Green globs? I thought they were just bad luck for some, but now I have them too!
Well, not me but my 36xs955. So far turning the set off and on degausses it and cures the problem. I'll keep you all posted how things work out.
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post #323 of 965 Old 04-29-2005, 09:18 AM
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I had the same problem. When I got my 36xs home and plugged in directv, it looked like garbage. A couple of things that did help was to use an s-video cable out of the receiver to the TV. I also have a dvd recorder that is progressive scan which the D-tv signal routes through before going to the TV. If the tv signal output out of the DVDR is progressive scan, the picture is much worse than using a component (interlaced) output. This can be checked by setting the remote control to TV mode and hitting Display. Should show as 480i and not 480p. Correctly setting up the display (brightness, contrast et) did help "somewhat". Picture doesn't seem as bad now 2 months later. I probably just became de-sensitized.

Not sure if I'm the only one, but I can tell absolutely no difference between the TV DRC mode settings (interlace, cinemotion, progression) Am I the only one?

Also, has anyone found a way when waching over the air hi-def to keep the vertical stretch mode constant, without having to redo each time you change channels? With over the air hi-def I also wish there was an option for Anemorphic widescreen instead of Letterbox. Kind of a "half vertical stretch". Letterbox is way to small, but a full stretch looks goofy.
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post #324 of 965 Old 05-14-2005, 06:56 PM
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I've reciently purchased this monitor though eBay. I live in Canada and got a super deal. Unfortunately, I had to drive 4 hours to pick up. But oh well... she's all mine... MINE!!!

Noticed some people complaining about SD with this TV. Here's some ways to dramatically increase the image quality of SD.

Forget about Component Cables. Garbage for this set. Don't blame the set. Seen many HD TV's that look like garbage with Component. What did you expect? It's the lowest of the low, and on a set of this size (and larger) garbage in is garbage out.

If using S-video, buy the best you can afford. I've used many types of S-video cable. The best, and a great value to boot, is Acoustic Research Pro II series. All text is much sharper and grain in background detail is noticibly reduced. Edge detail has also improved. Avoid the cheap and mid-range stuff.

If you also have a Home Theater (not HT from a box) then your receiver might offer S-video up-conversion to Component out to the TV. This further step does help to further clarify S-video just a touch more. However, if you don't have a home theater system that can do this, the Pro II S-video is your absolute best bet for direct to TV connection from SAT.

Have digital Cable? Get Sat. Less compression, better colors/less bleed, less background grain.

Other PQ issues...

I've deciphered some of the on-screen service menus without the Service Manual (Sony won't send it to Canada - Thanks!). The factory defaults are pretty close, but I was able to further the sharpness and definention. Once I find a way to get my hands on the real SM, I'll post some results on here as to what made the biggest difference.

If you have a DVD player, you HAVE to use component (not composite) into this set. It's the only way to get 480 P into the TV from the player. S-Video only supports interlaced signals and will dramatically reduce the res from the DVD player. Also, be sure to set on the DVD player that your TV is 16x9. I know it's a 4x3 set, but you'll get the maximum res from the DVD player this way. I'm using a Pioneer 47ai.

When setting up the on screen menu, it's best to work with the "Standard" image setting, and just increase all settings (except color, turn it down a bit) for the overall best picture. I've noticed if you set the screen to Vivid, it blows out alot of mid-level detail. For some SD material, I would recommend it (with color turned down). Other than that, just stick with Standard. The Movie setting is too dark for any use. If you're looking for a stronger contrast or less grain, etc from the DVD image, I would set this on the DVD player itself.

Enjoy!
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post #325 of 965 Old 05-15-2005, 09:47 AM
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Question..

Why do some digital stations appear to have a small 4x3 in the center of the screen, and a lot of wasted black space all around?

Answer..

A true HD signal (not just "digitized" 4x3 over sat or cable) is designed and broadcast for a 16x9 area on your screen. So when you view the 16x9 broadcast on the 4x3 set, it takes up a band across the screen. The TV isn't adding bars at the top or bottom of this, there's simply no info there from the broadcast.

A fair number of HD signals (I use free OTA with an antenna) are, at this time, simply upconverting a lot of traditional 4x3 programming. What this means is that you'll also see black bars at the left and right of the 4x3 programming, being broadcast in the 16x9 mode. When these stations are broadcasting true HD, you'll see the black bars at left and right of the 16x9 field dissappear.

Why the KD-36 is better than the KD-34...

Sony offers 2 sets that, from cabnet design to guts inside, are pretty much the same TV. The only difference is that the 36" model is 4x3, while the 34" model is 16x9.

Ok, but why should I get the 4x3 set? It's not widescreen and I was told to get widescreen...

- The 4x3 set is 400 US cheaper because 4x3 sets have less s+x appeal

- 16x9 broadcasts are only 1 inch less wide than the true 16x9 set... a very marginal dif.

- traditional 4x3 broadcasts are huge on the 4x3 set, and very small on the 16x9 set

- The 4x3 set offers more practical zooming fuctions for digital 4x3 or 16x9 images for a truely huge picture.


Some other items of interest...

Noticed some complaining of green globs in the upper portions of the TV. I will note that when I got the TV home, it did pass by one of my speakers, even though the speaker is a good distance away from it now, it did cause some discoloration at the top. Recycling power caused it to go away and I've never seen it again. I think passing this TV by any magnetic field during installation, moving, etc. (even if you didn't know you did). causes some sort of shift. Again, after recycling the power (which degauses the screen) I've never seen the issue again.

My last TV, a Panasonic GAOO, was very easy to affect with magnetic fields such as speakers. If I passed a speaker by the screen, it would take hours for the discoloration to go away. And typically that discoloration was green in tone. With the Sony though, all it took was recycling power, which certainly seems better to me.

If this issue keeps reappearing, check for anything too near the TV, such as unshielded front speakers, using an unshielded center channel, putting a HT receiver or powerbock under the TV's stand. If it keeps resappearing and you've eliminated all factors, then the TV may be faulty.


Picture Brightness...

I've noticed that Sony's lower-end version of this TV... think it's called the 410 (silver cabnet, not gray) has a slightly brighter overall picture with SD than mine. However, it's HD signal processing is not as sharp or bright (my TV does have super fine pitch tube). It's not a huge brightness thing, just very minor. I think a set either has to be calibrated more towards HD or more towards SD. However, with OTA HD broadcasts of 4x3 SD material (still with me? then my set is superior.
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post #326 of 965 Old 05-15-2005, 10:50 AM
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Quote:
Originally posted by logoguy905

Noticed some people complaining about SD with this TV. Here's some ways to dramatically increase the image quality of SD.

Forget about Component Cables. Garbage for this set.

I own this set and have thoroughly researched service mode, absent any help from Sony aside from the usual service-manual charts. Check out the articles here:

http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showt...0&pagenumber=1

The service-data charts for your set and other goodies are attached to some of the messages.

Where you have said "component" I think you mean composite. Component-input quality (such as from a DVD player) is quite excellent.

Garbage in, garbage out, indeed! Feed it a good SD signal, as from good analog cable, it looks nearly like HD in quality when viewed at an acceptable viewing distance for SD. But Sony's picture-mode settings are, in my opinion, brain-damaged, and Standard screws with the signal so much with its "dynamic-picture" features that you never get to see what is really there.

This set is capable of exquisite display of SD material to the degree that is good quality. Broadcast mush will appear, well, mushy!

KenTech
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post #327 of 965 Old 05-15-2005, 02:01 PM
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Hi Ken,

Thanks for the link to the service info. Looked for it previously here, but was unable to find.

Sorry if I mixed up the terms component with composite. Everyone does it from time to time
As long as you know the difference, that's pretty much what matters. Manufactures should have called component cable something else. Bad enough we have so much jargon... but to make a superior set of cables similar in name to an inferior cable was just bad judgement on their part. But that's a diff. rant

I've yet to start tinking with color and contrast in the SM. I've only worked on the sharpness/convergence settings as yet. My assumptions on picture settings were from the standoint as an "average" user. If someone had not yet tinked in the SM, then I would say a mildly adjusted set from "Standard" gives the best results. I do increase the contrast quite a bit, and increase brightness a bit. I turn down color a few notches so that color doesn't bleed. The VIVID setting gives a much better contrast, but my factory settings for this setting have bleeding reds and bigtime loss in mid-level detail. I won't even be tinkering in this area though the SM until I pick up Video Essentials. I've used some of the screens with THX Optimizer on better DVD's for the sharpness/convergence cettings.
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post #328 of 965 Old 05-16-2005, 09:07 AM
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I've noticed some threads about the brightness issue of the monitor. Not so much the black level, but how it automatically darkens the picture when more than, say, 25% of the screen goes full-tilt white.

I'm thinking this could be one of two issues..


A - Intentional...

A limiter (software/hardware?) has been put on the TV.

Anyone know how to deactivate this if this is the case? I don't care if turning the feature off shortens the life of the set. I only plan on having it for about 4 years before I upgrade. I really hate this possible "feature". I bought a CRT for it's intensity and brightness of image. Defeating the primary benfit of CRT technology isn't an upgrade to me.

I do recall the 420... the more basic version of this set, appearing to have a brighter white point when full coverage of the screen was occouring.


B - Unintentional...

The Capacitors on the TV were designed with the smaller 34" 16x9 models in mind and the exact same boards were used in my larger 4x3 set. The capasitors are not the right size for a set of this size.

This makes more sense to me. If you watch any 16x9 material, including 4x3 within the 16x9 area, it always seems to be bright to me. Yes, there is some dimming here and there, but it's quite moderate compared with standard 4x3 viewing.

A TV requires capacitors in order to store up energy for quick and bright images. If the capacitors are damaged (they failed in my GAOO after 10 years of use... replaced for about 200 bucks 2 year ago) then the image runs out of steam when needing to display bright images. This is similar to a power amp for your stereo needing capacitors for storing up energy for very loud and dynamic passages. Every time you want to take things "full tilt", it simply doesn't have the power in reserve to do so.

I feel one thing that furthers this thought is I've read of some people returning their "dark" sets for ones that appear MUCH brighter... manufactured after Sept. of 2004. My set was built in August of 2004. So, perhaps Sony woke up and put bigger capacitors on the 4x3 set in October and onwards, or they manually fixed some of the darkness issues in the SM. Anyone out there with the brightness issue AND have a TV manufactured in October 2004 or onwards?


Anyone have any thoughts on this?
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post #329 of 965 Old 05-16-2005, 12:34 PM
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My 36XS955 is a January build. I don't have a problem with maximum brightness (but I did come from a CRT rear projector), however I do have a problem with uneven brightness. So far no one including my wife has seen this pattern. I hesitate to point it out to my wife in particular, because it is one of those things that once you see it, it is hard to not see it.

The brightness level across the screen varies in little patches by a small amount. The only time I see this is during camera pans over moderate to bright backgrounds with little contrast -- clear skies work well. The effect is that it appears that my tube is dirty or has a bunch of fingerprints on it. During these shots, my eyes fix on the static pattern instead of following the camera motion, and I get pulled out of the 3-D world of the XS955 and am reminded that I'm looking at a TV. Displaying a full white or light gray field shows this mottled pattern, but it's seems so slight that you wouldn't think it would show up much in program material.

Has anyone seen this issue with their 36? It may just be that I'm overly sensitive to the limitations of such a big tube, but I just wonder if this is common or a defect in my set.
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post #330 of 965 Old 05-16-2005, 01:09 PM
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Quote:
Originally posted by logoguy905
I've noticed some threads about the brightness issue of the monitor. Not so much the black level, but how it automatically darkens the picture when more than, say, 25% of the screen goes full-tilt white.

I'm thinking this could be one of two issues..


A - Intentional...

A limiter (software/hardware?) has been put on the TV.

Anyone know how to deactivate this if this is the case? I don't care if turning the feature off shortens the life of the set. I only plan on having it for about 4 years before I upgrade. I really hate this possible "feature". I bought a CRT for it's intensity and brightness of image. Defeating the primary benfit of CRT technology isn't an upgrade to me.

When I first got my 36XS955 (which has nearly the same service-code set as the HS420), I was offended by the brightness limiting that was taking place. I have an electronics/systems background, so I immediately wondered exactly where this limiting was taking place. One assumes the video signal exists at some point in the chain of circuitry without limiting, passing thru various amplifiers, filters, and gain adjustments, and then hits the limiter. Then it passes to more processing and gain adjustments, finally reaching the display. If one boosts the video level *after* the limiter, the effect of the limiter will be less obvious. Maybe there has to be a corresponding lowering of the video gain before the limiter.

But this is theoretical: I don't know exactly how this processing chain works. But I experimented and found that adjusting the black level and picture (white) brightness with the *global* settings made the whole thing quite tolerable. Normal program material seems to be affected very little, and I am actually a bit grateful for a toning down of a full-white screen, as commonly occurs during commercials.

First, I made sure the *known* brightness limiters were turned off: 2170P-2 #4 YLMT should be set to 3 (default for my set). Also set 2170P-4 / ABLM and ABLT to 0. I haven't yet discovered any others. Note that modes other than Pro invoke some of these limiters.

In Pro mode, I set my Brightness and Picture sliders to dead-center = 31 and color to Normal. I set 2170P-1 #5 SBRT to its midpoint (31) and calibrated the black level with #9-11, RCUT-BCUT, with a decent pluge pattern from Digital Video Essentials, getting the dark-gray color reasonably neutral (pre-calibration). This established a normal black level for the Brightness slider. Then I set the RGB-drive settings for a good viewing brightness on SD channels in the evening. After careful color calibration to approx 6500K, the settings I have lived with are, for 2170P-1 #6-11 (RDRV-BCUT), 42-28-22-31-18-14. And 2170P-4 #21 GAMB is set to 1 to correct yellowish mid-tones. (For any settings of GAMR, GAMG, and GAMB, GAMB is always set 1 higher than the other two.)

The bottom line has been that this set is quite reasonably bright with minimal limiting for evening SD broadcasts. I can up the Picture to 40-ish for darker programs. DVDs and most HD material are plenty bright with Picture in the middle setting of 31. SD broadcast TV is black-level anarchy, so I continually diddle the Brightness when switching programs. But it's near the center for most SD and all HD material.

I think that this brightness limiting has a good engineering purpose, limiting the heating and resultant distortion of the aperture grille and the pink and green patches that occur. It may help with high-voltage regulation by limiting the total beam current. I believe the limiting is totally intentional and has nothing to do with capacitors in the circuit. If I did discover a magic switch to turn off all limiting, I might just leave it on, since the current dusplay is so satisfactory. For a large CRT, it is amazingly bright, and that means a huge beam current from the poor electron guns in the back, more so than for smaller sets.

I recommend you go into service mode and try some different settings -- after writing down the original settings, of course. You could end up with something very similar to what I now have and enjoy.

KenTech
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