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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Yesterday I went to the Short Hills Mall for the first time with a few friends and it had a Bang & Olufsen store there. I had never heard of them up until now, but I was VERY VERY VERY impressed by there tv sets.


They have a tv set called the Beovision Avant which is an HDTV widescreen set which comes I think in both tube and projection. I was looking at the tube model, and NEVER have I seen something look so amazingly clear in my entire life.


He had it connedted to a DVD player which was only doing 480p (and possibly some other internal line doubling, I'm not sure) and playing the fifth element. I have never seen anything like it before, and I've been looking at various HDTV's (including my own) for a while. It looked like the people were going to walk out of the TV at me. The image had a total 3D quality too it.


So then I figured it had to be something really amazing with a dvd, but no way could it do it with something like a video tape. So I asked the guy if he had it connected to a vcr or anything like that, and he had another set that just so happened to be, and it was playing Episode 1. Once again I was amazed! I felt like reaching in and grabbing people out of the TV!


The sets go for about $8500, and they are only 30 inches, but they are EXTREMELY impressive to see. I suggest anyone in the area of a major city to go check it out. To get more details you can go here http://www.bang-olufsen.com/


Does anyone know of any other TV's that have that 3D feel to it? I'm wondering if there is something I'm missing in the cheap Toshiba that i own, and if all TV's should look that way. Let me re-iterate that when I was watching the DVD it looked better then almost ANY HDTV PICTURE I HAVE SEEN!


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Quote:
Originally posted by chap:
Does anyone know of any other TV's that have that 3D feel to it? I'm wondering if there is something I'm missing in the cheap Toshiba that i own, and if all TV's should look that way. Let me re-iterate that when I was watching the DVD it looked better then almost ANY HDTV PICTURE I HAVE SEEN!

I don't have that much contact with a whole bunch of

HDTV's, but in my opinion on "regular" TV's the smaller the

screen the sharper and more realistic is the picture. It

always seems true that the smaller screens seem to have

the best brightness and color rendition. This is

especially true when you're relatively close to the set.

Unless you move back suitably far, a larger screen set

will always look crummy when viewed from too close.


I've always been a fan of direct-view sets, which is why

I went with the 34" Sampo HDTV. While watching DVD's from

my Sony progressive scan player at 480p on the Sampo made

my friend's jaw drop, showing him a demo of 1080i really

made him go totally speechless.


If you enjoyed the 30" direct-view B&O HDTV, I'd recommend

you try and find the 34" Sampo SME-34WHD5 for comparison.

I find it quite amazing (and have experienced none of the

problems some others seem to have had with the set). While

it is not "feature-rich" like other sets, it is a terrific

HDTV monitor with fantastic picture.
 

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Hi Chap! While I haven't seen the particular recent set you were talking about, I have seen an earlier B&O set that was also spectacular looking. That particular set was incredibly creamy smooth looking! Apparently, B&O has done this via control of contrast. Their sets have inherently low contrast ratios (thank goodness) that have enabled them to render very film-like images without looking too dim in the process. I have always found it amazing that no-one has ever discussed them. This is probably due to the fact that they are much bigger in Scandinavia than in the US. However, the price tag on the one you saw is way beyond my range . . . but I can dream!
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B&O took a few different stabs at the US retail marketplace in the last 20 years. The most recent approach is good old brick & mortar stores, located in high income areas.


To my knowledge, they do not have an HDTV compatible display, as their products are designed for the European market, which has no HDTV. Their PAL/NTSC direct view displays do look very good, but are no match for a properly set up HDTV.


Last year while in Europe, I saw a B&O 16:9 PAL direct view TV. It looked about 36" diagonal, and for PAL, was very good.


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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
When I spoke to the person he did say it was HDTV compatible, and you can hook a settop box into it. They have 2 different models of the same TV. One is for the US which I guess can handle our HDTV, and then there is the Euro version which probably can't. I personally don't like there website. There is barely any info whatsoever in there!


I must say though, I still have never seen an HDTV picture do what it did. I first saw the picture when I was about 30 feet away and was impressed, and then when I got within 10 feet I was totally amazed. I really would like to see an HDTV that looked that good with non HD material.


Its outta my price range right now as well though I can picture myself saving up to buy it. . . . who knows.


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B&O has always been first about the design and the visual appeal and then about the electronics. In other words "form before function". I've always been of the opposite school, "function before form", which means I'd rather have a big ugly box that performs well first and then worry about the aesthetics.


While B&O stuff sometimes looks stunning, you're paying a lot of the bucks so that their creative designer can design something that looks good first and then turn it over to the engineers.


For the price you pay for B&O, you can buy some pretty good high-end equipment that is superior in function. But hey, if you just want stuff that looks good ...


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Chap,

You are ABSOLUTELY correct! I've seen them at Roosevelt Field on Long Island. They too have a B&O store and have 2 of the 30" sets hooked up to DVD players. They had what I thought was unquestionably the best looking picture I've ever seen on a direct-view. The depth and clarity was stunning. I love my Panny Tau 34" HDTV, but the DVD display on the B&O is unquestionably better than the Panny or the new Sony HD2. It's strange that I've never seen it hooked up to HD programming. What was interesting was that immediately above the B&O direct-view was a 42" plasma HD display (I believe it was a Fujitsu), hooked up to DTVs HD demo. The B&O DVD picture was superior in every way. It makes you wonder why they aren't supplying the B&O set with HD material when it's obviously available in the store.


One thing you'll notice is that the B&O pictures are set for a very "tame" picture. They are displayed with low contrast & brightness compared to the average display at other retailers. This is a much more professional way to display a direct-view set. However, considering you're paying about $250/inch and the picture is quite small by today's standards, I don't think it represents a "good buy".
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Ken, I agree with you on the good buy part. Its very expensive, but I STILL have yet to see ANYTHING else that gives me a picture like that. If all sets did what this one did I think I wouldn't give this one a second thought. I wish I could get a differnt model without all those options like the swivel base, and the built in reciever (even though all of that stuff is amazing).


I think I'm going to try to call ahead and setup a demo to come see it with an HDTV connection in it to see what it looks like. I think they didn't hook an HD signal in just because the majority of the country still has regular NTSC and DVD's and VHS, and not HD. Who knows?


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I checked out the B&O specs on the site and it doesn't actually mention HDTV anywhere. There is a reference to 1080i as a scanning format for the front projector but 480p for the tube. Confusing because there only seems to be one model which looks too slim to be a rear projector so I don't know what the front projector reference is to.


Tony
 

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Chap,

You may be right about the reason they only display DVDs, but I still find it odd that the Plasma set was showing HD and the store had TWO B&Os which both were showing DVD. It would seem they could have hooked up one to the HD source.


My feeling is that as good as the DVD was, I would still INSIST (especially at that price) it look even better with HD. If I can see no difference, than I might begin to get concerned about the set's ability to display HD. But, that DVD picture, WOW!
 

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As a B&O owner for the past 9 years, I can attest to the PQ based upon comparisons to other TVs available at that time (and now). I paid $2,000 for a B&O 26" MX5000 in 1992 and everyone who saw the set marveled at the PQ. Also, the geometry was perfect on that set as well as the new 30" widescreen sets (from what I've seen at the local B&O retailer). Other factors were the interconnectivity of their other components (discontinued). These were truly interactive. Unfortunately, with cable or DSS, a lot of this advantage is lost since learning remotes cannot learn the B&O codes and their remotes are not 'learning' types. I had the 7000 series audio system and the performance was great.


These components are, aesthetically, the most beautiful I have seen. I have recently sold my components since the new B&O TV won't fit into my custom built entertainment Center. There is no doubt that their equipment is very pricey but if you consider it to be the best to suit your tastes and you can afford it, what the hell, go for it. You won't be sorry.


I've kept the catalogs for old times sake.


Forever a B&O disciple,


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Tom Taylor
 
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