Viewing Review: Great Picture, Bad Sound! - AVS Forum | Home Theater Discussions And Reviews
Great Picture, Bad Sound! Edit
by Dizzy49 Combined Rating: 3.4
After much argument and some begging and pleading, I received this has a "paid upgrade" from my old Samsung DLP that I absolutely LOVED! In my eyes, this thing had some big shoes to fill.

Pros Cons
  • Great colors (after tweaking), dark blacks, 3D and Smart TV for bragging rights
  • Flimsy stand, horrible buzzing even with sound turned off, required considerable tweaking for optimal results
After much argument and some begging and pleading, I received this has a "paid upgrade" from my old Samsung DLP that I absolutely LOVED! In my eyes, this thing had some big shoes to fill.

Specs alone, the PN60E6500 had the goods. 600hz, 3D, SmartTV, WiFi, Black Pro Panel, Wide Color Enhancer, Eco Sensor, Cinema Smooth, AllShare, ConnectShare, etc. To be honest, I didn't know what half of the stuff meant, and still don't!

When it arrived, the first thing I noticed was how small the box was, and how light it was. Don't get me wrong, I could move my old DLP by myself, but it wasn't exactly easy, and it fit nicely on my equipment stand. The new one was incredibly slim, my 27" Dell monitor is thicker than this thing, and I could easily pick it and move it by myself (not recommended though).

As I set it, the next thing I noticed was that it had a fairly generic and borderline flimsy stand. Reminded me of the stand that came with my wife's $75 off-brand monitor. Once connected it seemed sturdy enough. I next pulled out the two sets of 3D glasses and remote and handed them to my son to unwrap and put batteries into while I connected all of the cables.

It has nearly every connection imaginable and I could connect 3 HDMI devices, along with the VCR (for old Disney movies, I was outvoted on keeping it), and the Wii. Once it was set up, I wasted no time, and popped Cars BD into the PS3 to watch. As it was going through the trailers and things, I was playing with the settings. Lots of picture modes and things to fiddle with. I don't remember which I settled on initially.

As the movie started I hopped on the couch and settled in, and that's when I noticed the buzzing immediately. Right in the viewing sweet spot is a very noticeable buzzing. If I shifted to the left or right (i.e., the far ends of the couch vs the middle) it was barely audible, but it was bad right in the middle. My initial thought was that the speaker was blown or something. Much to the dismay of the family, I refused to watch the movie like that, and I disabled the speakers in the menu, and took another 10 min to connect it to the sound system (connecting it is easy, getting to my equipment is not). I probably should have done it to start with, but I was anxious! After it was all connected, I sat back down and fired Cars back up. The buzzing was still there! I double checked that the internal speaker was disabled, then immediately hopped online, and sure enough, the buzz is a known issue for this line. I promptly traded seats with my 3rd old daughter while I scoured the internet and AVS for fixes.

While I did not find any fixes, I did find suggestions for settings from my trusted AVS friends. I spent some time navigating the menus, and they were simple and intuitive as well as visually appealing. Wifi setup was fairly straightforward and easy. I played with the SmartTV Hub thing a bit. I had to agree to at least a dozen user agreements before I could even get in. I purchased a Netflix movie and it wasn't too bad. It wasn't as crisp as a BD, probably due to the compression. I hooked up the Ethernet and tweaked settings, and it was better, but still noticeable difference to me. I thought most of it was fluff with Netfix and Pandora being the two most useful things offered.

Then I moved onto what was going to be the big feature for me. Could I successfully connect it to my media server and move my WDTV to the master bedroom! Try as I could, it would not connect to a Windows share. I turned Plex on (I turned it off to see if it would connect to a Windows share by itself) and it detected the server. Navigation was slow, and awful! The interface reminded me of a BAD Windows 3.1 port, and I think my old 4mhz 8086 ran faster! It would play 720p material, but 1080p was choppy, even with Ethernet (Cat6 and Gigabit switches throughout). The WDTV would have to stay a bit longer.

The next test was the 3D. I personally am not a fan of 3D, but my kids are. I popped in How to Train Your Dragon and put on the 3D glasses, and then we realized the first issue. There were 3 of us, and only 2 glasses. My son gracefully gave his up to his little sister. The glasses look cheap at first glance, but they are lightweight (even with the battery) and fit my big head, and my daughters head. They are fairly durable (anything my daughter touches HAS to be or it won't last). It took me a minute to figure out how to connect the glasses, and that the TV had to be in 3D mode before they would stay on. Once we got past that it was smooth sailing. Once in 3D mode you can select a couple options, so it supports various 3D modes, and it was really easy. The picture looked pretty much as I expected (in a good way). I then handed my glasses to my son and checked off 3D off my list of tested features.

The last test was for and by my wife. She is a digital artist, and so she did some comparisons and testing of her own to for color reproduction. None of the built in settings reproduced colors to her satisfaction. One I thought was OK, but she said it was way too dark. It took us several weeks of testing to find settings that she felt were suitable. I can't argue, I think the picture looks great!

I replaced the WDTV with a HTPC built with the help of Assassin HTPC later. After several weeks of tweaking, I found settings that I liked with help from AVS forums. I didn't care for most of the built in picture settings. They were too dark, too red, or colors were blown out. I enabled the Cinema Smooth, but that would be a personal preference for most people. I disabled the Eoc Sensor as well as it left the picture too dark for our tastes.

Overall, after some experimenting and tweaking, we are quite pleased with the picture. The remote is easy to use, and the 3D mode and glasses were simple. I found many of the 'features' to be useless, and I would have preferred to pass on most of them for a basic TV with a larger screen. By far the largest issue is the buzzing. For me, the only thing that could ruin a great movie worse than bad audio is a terrible ending. Many friends and family ask my recommendations for Computer and AV equipment before purchasing, and I have told them to steer clear of the Samsung Plasma TVs. If the audio wasn't an issue I would have given it 4 stars since you still really needed to tweak the picture for the best results.
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GFelizardo 09-04-2013, 10:02 PM

I had this problem with a JVC LCD TV, which was annoying. Surprisingly to me, turning the brightness to the max and the backlight to full fixed the problem. Must be the attenuation of the light that causes the buzz, much like a dimmer switch. It worked for me since this was a bedroom TV, and the picture quality was still excellent with the enhanced brightness.

denide 09-04-2013, 07:59 AM

My last plasma set was pn50b850 Samsung. I too had trouble with audible buzzing when the tv had to produce a high brightness image or a mostly white screen. found out online it wasn't the audio speakers but the cooling system and fans. have since upgraded to the panny 55st60 and buzzing is no longer an issue.

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