The word for today, boys and girls, is GREAT!
As in, this thing is GREAT!
I got a call from Seko- they wanted to deliver early. I raced home, passing them on the way and gesturing to follow me. I later learned the driver thought maybe he had cut me off and the gestures were of a less friendly nature. But they soon realized what was going on. Very polite, carried it in, helped me move a couch, brought the TV next to where it will be, moved the couch back, maybe 5-10 minutes total. BTW, have you looked under your couch lately?.........
First off, I don't hear any fan noise. But I wasn't listening for it. I'll play a bit of Dangerous Liaisons later and listen carefully.
We watched some OTA (after I realized I needed to cycle the 721 to restore the OTA cable connection). The system found all the NTSC channels we normally get, plus it pulls in Baltimore's channel 2 (not very well, but watchable in a pinch). Picture was good. I have some speckle noise that is due to over amplifying but when I use a smaller amp, I lose a station. In between would be best, I might get an adjustable amp. But frankly, it only happens on NTSC, esp channel 5, and I don't think I'll be watching much NTSC anymore.
It picked up the ATSC stations I normally get, and everything looked fine. Except it does not show a picture (or sound) for 30-1 & 30-2, stations I sporadically get on my ATI HDTV Wonder. I must conclude that the tuner, while certainly good enough for the channels I normally might watch, is not quite as sensitive as the tuner in the ATI HDTV Wonder. I did not suddenly get WMPT, as I hoped. Maybe the LG LST-4200A due in later this week will do that.
Reception quality- PQ? MUCH better than I expected. Certainly I can easily watch OTA on this set, full size. And guess what- we watched a pre-recorded VHS tape of Riverdance. It was watchable. Not great, but again, quite watchable, which is more than I expected. I thought SD, esp VHS, would be only viewable in reduced size, by using POP- or twin, as JVC seems to call it.
We watched bits of DVDs. Looked great! And after I remembered to set the DVD player to 16:9 from the old 4:3 setting, the Panorama/Cinema/Full/Regular settings began to make more sense. Full now seems to adjust properly for different aspects on different DVDs. BTW, don't try to set your aspect ratio on an opening menu screen or such- it's likely the aspect ratio of that screen will not match the actual movie.
Again, DVDs were very good- great. Later I'll switch the player to progressive mode and see if it makes a difference as to which piece of equipment converts to progressive better.
We used the THX optimizer, since we did not have AVIA or DVE handy. We tweaked and improved the picture. Later, when my wife showed up, we reduced the yellow a bit more to improve the skin tones with DTV OTA.
I have no HD source but OTA, and that doesn't start until 6, I guess. I'll tune in 26 and others and get a real handle on just how good this set can be.
Blotching- this is what I call a reported defect on some earlier sets where a black field will have a lighter colored area on one side, and maybe a purplish color somewhere else. THERE IS NONE. On light grey screens and on black star fields from Star Wars, color is consistent.
Color banding: None. I looked for this just before typing this up. Absolutely not a trace.
CA. Sorta. Maybe convergence in this case. Using THX I put a white circle up on the screen. Getting up close and personal to the screen reveals the right part of the circle has a 1-2 pixel green side on the left, and magenta on the right. This is not visible on the left side of the circle. At the bottom of the circle, green on top, magenta on the bottom. This is not visible at the top of the circle. Or maybe I have green and magenta reversed. In any event, it is not noticeable from my normal 12' viewing distance, or even outside of very roughly 2 feet. More on this later.
Very little video noise on edges. I did not notice any until I later showed some scenes to my wife, where it was occasionally visible. This was NTSC so it's the source and how it's handled.
No motion artifacts when scenes are panned. No blurring in fast motion.
E* SD material looked even better than DTV OTA . Very watchable. I will have no trouble watching the History Channel on this set.
I previously watched an NTSC 36" set for most viewing. Also JVC. I will admit that the NTSC OTA does look better on the 36" CRT, but not by a large amount. I am really REALLY surprised at the SD PQ. Pleasantly surprised.
We thought that the edges looked bowed in at bit. I put a piece of styrofoam packing material next to the sides as a straight edge. Not bowed in, just my imagination.
Side bars are grey. I don't see a menu option to change this to black, but I certainly have not yet mastered the menu. Some 4:3 material is broadcast in a 16:9 format with black bars.
And yes, black is black. I'm not too sensitive in this area. We watched parts of the Matrix also, and this movie has a lot of black. I could see details in the black. I suspect side by side with a good CRT would show a difference, but when this set is fully tweaked, probably not too much. I'm happy with it now, and I expect it will get better as I learn to tweak. I might get an ISF cal. We did not try changing modes (theater, etc).
One thing I do not care for, and hope I will find an alternative to, is the single input button. You must cycle thru each mode to get to the one you want. I may just need to RTM and learn a better way.
Also, I do not have this plugged in as well as I could, in the sense that my compulink is not working properly to automatically shift inputs when I shift from OTA to DVD to E* to tape. The JVC compulink eliminates the need to select which input on the TV to go to, it just does it when you select the different sources on the receiver. I think if I move my DVD to video 2 I may solve much of this. I did not realize how much I was accustomed to the compulink until I was asked which outputs I was using from each source (S-vid, component, etc). I had forgotten- I just let compulink do it automatically so I never have to remember. If you don't have and use the JVC compulink system, this paragraph may not make much sense to you- don't worry about it. Minor.
Mine is up high, too high, eye level is about the bottom of the screen. Still, wonderfully watchable. I might angle the set down slightly to compensate. The furniture it's on has high WAF so it stays.
It turns out I did not have a male to male VGA cable, so I have not hooked up the laptop yet. My wife & I will go out tonight and forage for one. Guess I'd better pony up supper, too.
I'll try to post pictures later.
IT'S A KEEPER!