I bought a Sony VPH-1031Q in 2000. It was among the smallest CRT PJs, which still meant 100 lbs. or so. It had such a short throw that I could never really get it setup right. Convergence was a bitch, sync on green was a bitch, fabricating the cable it needed was a bitch, etc. This was the vintage of CRTs where you had to take the cover off and turn little dials with a special screwdriver to make convergence and other adjustments. Not exactly plug and play.
I guess it gave me a certain admiration for the CRT folks, but also reinforced the impracticality of the whole thing. Sure, perfect blacks are nice, but having to fiddle around with little dials every time you fired the thing up was truly bothersome. Also, I could never decide if the CRT "smoothness" was a blessing or a curse, but it was the most striking characteristic to me. Sometimes it came off more as a sort of blurry imprecision...no replacement for fixed-pixel accuracy. It was definitely "film-like," but that isn't always a good thing.
I had bought it on ebay from a guy who advertised it as "new," though what could really be considered "new" several years after being discontinued?
Anyway, I hadn't put more than 10 hours on it before realizing it would never work in my space, so back on ebay it went. I sold it to a guy in Atlanta for maybe $50-100 more than I paid for it. I packed it well and insured it like crazy, but surprise, surprise, it broke in shipment. I suspect it was the power supply. I felt pretty bad about it and wanted to at least make sure the guy who bought got the insurance money, if not a refund, but he was so pleased to have a new 1031 with new tubes that he happily carted it off to some Sony repair shop and probably got hosed on the repair.
Anyway, I didn't hear how it turned out, but I always hoped that 1031 got back into service and was put to good use by someone who could make it live up to its potential.