Originally Posted by improwise
I would say that the main problem here is that Sony charges for "Ultra premium" but doesn't deliver it. Well, at least not to everyone. Sitting in front of my HX923, I see 2 things, the best image on the market (we don't have the Elite over here so I have never seen that) and...a stuck pixel. And this is my THIRD set, so it is not just a one time thing. I realize that there are other picture defects which are just nothing to do about, like every LCD that doesn't have IPS panels have bad viewing angels, but broken pixels in 2 out of 3 TVs...don't think so.
I remember back when the XBR4 came out it was a real breakthrough in LCD tech. Same with the 81 series Samsung (if I remember the number correctly - it used gloss screen though). Both sets had finally solved the could/triple ball/grey black problems that LCD had been suffering from for years (the XBR2, although nice looking had real bad clouding issues). Most people that had HDTVs didn't have true 1080p/120Mhz/24fps at the time so when those two sets came out it satisfied 95% of avs forum members (yes, the obsessive compulsive types like me - IT MUSST BE PERFECT or I WILL DIE! lol). The only people still complained in the XBR4/5 forums where the ones that were getting lemons (certain models built in Mexico; production issue). Certainly not the majority.
My XBR4 has minor clouding. From a scale of 0-zero clouding to 10-max clouding (does this even exist?) I would say my XBR4 was a 2. Very minor. My new LED based/HX929 55" has more clouding than my XBR4. I would say it ranks around a 4. But I remember hearing that those that were familiar with the behavior of LCDs need to experiment with the LED backlighting because it will accentuate or exaggerate any flaws your set may have. Since I was aware of this before buying the 929 I was prepared.
When I got the set...what I noticed from the get-go was that the BLACKS WERE AMAZING (just like Plasma)! But boy, was this set very sensitive to blacks and whites; I had to learn how to rein in the LED backlighting auto features and white balance. Currently I've managed to find a sweet spot for much better blacks than my XBR4 although not as black as the default settings that initially wowed me. Now, it's true that this set does have more clouding than my XBR4, but on both sets what I've noticed is that the clouds only appear on transitional signals not when content that is dark is actually being sent to the TV. For example, if I turn off my PS3 or activate a game there's a breif moment when there is no signal and it is then when you see the clouds. Also, when watching Comcast HD, during commercial breaks you might get a change where it goes from Dolby 5.1 to mono (or less than 720p) where the fade to black are absent an HD signal. So, 99% of the time I never see the clouds. Not unless i want to purposely make my self go crazy and turn off the cable box or PS3 and turn up the LED backlighting and just stare at the flaws! 8/
Now to be fair, dead pixels would drive me crazy since it's right on the screen when I watching transmitted content. I'd have to see the flaw to actually make a decision. But when the set arrived I checked immediately for any obvious issues. I found none that jumped out at me so I was good to go. If had found a dead pixel I would have returned it day 2 since the drivers said that they would replace it no problem as long as I saved the boxes for a few days. I can't remember if they offered to bring boxes if I had thrown them out. Nevertheless, so far so good.
One of the things that gorthocar said above is that he just bought a Panny. I'm sure that each HDTV maker has their own issues, I'm just not willing to go to another brand just to learn all about their "quirks." I just want the best picture I can buy in a 55" package. It's not like it broke the bank. I paid less for my HX929 55" than my XBR4 46" (can't give specifics for fear of getting yelled at by the mods).
Anyways, over the last 25 years, I've tried NEC, Samsung, Gateway, and Dell (which outsources their panels to Sharp, LG or Samsung). I usually go with Dell. Yes, even over the Apple Cinema Displays. I've settled for the two of their 2nd tier Dell U2412 over the top-of-the-line Dell flagship U2410. Hell, I don't even know what panel they use in this one. Probably the Samsung one. Either way, for HDTV and CRTs (in the past) I've tried Hitachi, Samsung and Sharp. But for some reason I keep coming back to Sony (Trinitron and Bravia only -- I didn't buy during the Wega line).
improwise, I hoep you get your deal pixel issue fixed since any flaw in the screen when content is being transmitted would drive me crazy. But if you move on to another brand it would be understandable.