Well, I havent looked at this thread in I dont know how long... Unfortunately I'm back to report that my HL-T6176S has developed seven white dots in the upper right corner of the screen. I did the basic research on the white dot phenomenon, and the DMD chip failure, and the way that Samsung is trying to stiff as many owners on the repairs as possible.
Thru several calls to the corporate "customer service" number, and a candid chat with the local approved service center, I have determined a few useful facts, forgive me if this is redundant:
1. Samsungs Tier 1 service reps are soley there to get you to go away and go pay for your repair yourself. They will say nearly anything and deny just about everything to this end.
2. According to tech center, white pixel dots are the DMD chip, period, no matter how much the call center denies it.
3. The DMD chip costs just about $200 from samsung, but they wont sell direct to you the consumer, or at least thats their line.
4. There seems to be a magic number of complaints per specific model (size and series) of tv which will trigger Samsung to be willing to recognize your tv as being flawed. The costs on repairs of HL-Ses are already covered, and certain sizes fo HL-T have hit the threshold. In my particular case, I have found that the trigger number for the 6176 has not yet been hit.
I would recommend owners facing the white dots issues to call the 1-800 number for Samsung tech support and not be dissuaded. Eventually the trigger number will be hit, but the sooner the better. There is no reason why $2500 tvs should be failing at 3 yrs old.
I am quite disappointed in both the durability of the technology and the quality of Samsungs customer service on the issue.
That aside, i still love the TV