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Dell W2606C 26" LCD TV

post #1 of 10
Thread Starter 
Does any one know who's screen is used in Dell's (relatively) new 26" W2606C LCD TV? I've just ordered one for my home office... There was a good deal on them up here in Canada.

FWIW, the specs say:

Brightness: 500
Contrast ratio: 800:1
Response time: 12 ms
Viewable area: 575.8 x 323.7 mm (22.67 inches x 12.74 inches)
Native resolution: 1366x768 (WXGA)
Horizontal viewing angle: 170 degrees
Vertical viewing angle: 170 degrees

BTW, in case you're interested, here is the documentation.

I've been told that some Dell screens are made by LG-Philips, so I checked their website. The specs of their LC260W02 are identical in terms of size, but the other specs are different.

Chi Mei doesn't make a 26" as far as I can tell.
post #2 of 10
Thread Starter 
I wonder if it may be based off the 26" Philips.

I'm told that some Dells like the 23" are based off Philips models, and that the 26" Dell has the same menu design as the 26" Philips. Plus, as I mentioned above, the LG-Philips LC260W02 screen is the same physical size as the Dell's.
post #3 of 10
Thread Starter 
Got the TV. Massive shipping box. No obvious stuck pixels seen yet.

As expected, poor to medium quality analogue SD cable truly sux through S-video. Higher quality SD cable is mediocre at best, and much worse than on my CRT (but again, I was expecting this).

The remote is pretty good actually, much to my delight.

No obvious video banding. I'll assess better when I try a greyscreen.

480i DVD through component is pretty reasonable, but I can see some rare combing. I'm guessing this TV uses the Pixelworks chip, but I'm not sure. An added bonus is that the TV accepts a PAL source. (My DVD player can output PAL.) I can't tell you if the video quality is any better though. Most of my PAL DVDs are not reference quality. They're usually hard-to-get movies with relatively poor transfers.

Unfortunately, I don't have a progressive scan (and definitely not an upcoverting) DVD player for this TV, and my HD cable box for this TV has not yet arrived.

I have not yet tested VGA. I forgot that I don't have an extra VGA cable at home to hook up to my iMac.
post #4 of 10
Thread Starter 
So I installed everything. Still no stuck pixels. No banding with the greyscreen. No lockups. The base swivels sideways and tilts vertically. Very solid and nicely built. It even looks good, which is in stark contrast to Dell PCs. Viewing angle is very good, and noticeably above average, but I wouldn't say it's the absolute best for viewing angle.

I'm using VGA with the Mac. OS X senses the TV as 1360x768. Dunno why it's not 1366x768, but the TV can be set to a "1:1" setting on the TV so there is perfect pixel mapping. (According to the TV, 1360 is the proper setting.) I just get 3 columns of black pixels down each side which I don't notice. There is also a "Fill Aspect Ratio" and "Full Screen" setting that scales up slightly to use those extra 6 pixels, but there is no point in doing that.

The only annoyance is that the TV sends this info even when it's off, so the Mac always thinks there's an active screen attached, even when the unit is off.

Colours via VGA in bright scenes are very good. Blacks and dark greys are OK, as is contrast, but I've seen better. I'd say this screen (rated 800:1 contrast ratio) is not as good as the iMac's (rated 800:1 also, although excellent IMO despite the sub 1000 rating), but better than the iBook's (which isn't given a rating). DVD from the iMac is quite nice too. It's better than from my cheap 480i player over component. 720p trailers look good too. Unfortunately, my G5 2.0 with 64 MB Radeon 9600 is struggling with 720p when the second screen is attached. With the native iMac screen 720p plays fine. However, once I plug in the second screen, 720p video sometimes stutters. Now I have another good reason to get an iMac Intel Core Duo.

(Click to enlarge)

I hooked up my HD cable box to the TV, and have it set to 720p most of the time. It also works fine via 1080i. 480p sorta works too, but it doesn't look anywhere near as good. 480i is not supported over DVI. One cool thing is that if I use that "1:1" setting again, the TV sets itself to 1280x720, with a black rim all around the screen. No scaling needed. Scaled to fill the screen it still looks awesome, so I leave it that.

One bonus of the remote is there is a "DVI" button, so it instantly takes me to the DVI input. Too bad there isn't a "VGA" button. There is also a useful "Info" button, which tells me the resolution, refresh rate, audio and video settings, etc.

HD channels are very nice. Again, colours in bright scenes are great, but again blacks and dark greys are good but not as good as the best I've seen on LCD. Mind you, I was checking out the Sony Bravia XBR 26" and for some strange reason it was thrice the price.

It seems that this TV is designed to be used in a fairly bright setting. In dim light you really have to turn down the brightness, but I find that if you go below 40 (out of 100) brightness, the contrast suffers severely. So, I added another lamp to this room, and turned up the brightness on the iMac to match.

Image quality from my HD box over component is good, but DVI is noticeably better. It seems this unit is built for digital, and that analogue suffers a bit. SD channels over S-video range from OK, to downright crap. No comparison whatsoever to CRT. Mind you, the Bravias don't look so hot with SD channels either over S-video, but I'd say the few I've seen are superior to this set for SD channels to a certain extent. CRT still blows away the Bravias though for SD.

However, if I switch to DVI, the SD channel quality improves noticeably. ie. My Scientific Atlanta 3250HD deals with analogue SD cable better than the TV does, which doesn't really surprise me, but still is a bit of annoyance.
post #5 of 10
Thread Starter 
Hmmm... The W2606C has only been out a few months, and Dell has already replaced it with the W2607C.

The new W2607C gets a combo ATSC HD and analogue NTSC tuner, 8 ms response time, and slightly better viewing angle. Unfortunately, the contrast ratio drops from 800:1 in the W2606C to 600:1 in the new w2607C.
post #6 of 10
Any idea what the OTA HDTV tuner in the Del W2607C is?

(how does it compare in OTA HDTV reception to other HDTVs and the fifth generation LG tuner chips in computer HDTV cards?)
post #7 of 10
It's imperative to get extended warranties. Dell will not fix TVs, they only replace. See the Dell TV customer forum for W2600 information.
post #8 of 10
I know im rehashing an hold thread but anyone who has this or other dell tv's what are your brightness settings at what picture settings do you have, i want to make my tv look good!
post #9 of 10
I'm having the same problem. During the day or in bright light the 26" dell W2606C looks ok. At night when there's very little light in the room I can barely make out the contrast on anything dark. All the dark colored things on the screen have no contrast. For example someone's head of hair is solid black and you can't see their hair at all, its just a mass of black.

I've fiddled with all the controls on the tv and I can't seem to improve the picture. Any suggestions?
post #10 of 10
Thread Starter 
TV is now dying. It shuts itself off, for no apparent reason. @$#%$#!

I've only had the TV for 18 months.
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