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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I'm looking for a replacement for my bedroom CRT TV. I now have the ability to watch HDTV there (versus just NTSC) and I picked up a Samsung UN32B6000 and LN32B650 last week to test out. I haven't tried the 650 yet but I've been fiddling with the settings on the 6000 and I still can't get it to display black correctly. I run the backlight at 2 or below and I've played with the other settings including white balance but I still can't get this display to look good. I haven't tried using a calibration disc yet. I'm about to swap out the 6000 for the 650 but I expect that it will be worse for black levels.


Is there any other 32" HD display (preferably a FP) that might do better in a totally dark room? I need the display now so I'm not interested in what's coming down the pipe (like a 32” OLED HDTV) unless it will hit the streets in the next month. I just couldn't take pounding on the old CRT to get it to stay on any more.


BTW, my HT/living room display is a Pioneer Kuro Signature PRO-141FD (60" plasma monitor) so I know what a good FP can look like in a dark room.
 

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Discussion Starter · #2 ·
^


So by the lack of replies can I assume that there isn't anything thing better for a totally dark room in a 32" HDTV right now? That's a sad state of affairs if this is the best that is offered in that size. I talked with a TV repair technician yesterday and he too didn't have anything good to say about LCDs in general and suggested the only option was to buy an older Sony 32" HD CRT and live with paying $400 to replace the power supply on occasion. I would really like to have a latest generation FP at that location but I'm not sure I can live with an LCD for video.
 

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This is probably going to be something you don't want to hear, but the truth is that there is no 32-inch flat panel out now that will look good (as in deep, black black-levels) in a totally dark room.


It's a bummer OLED couldn't be here now, instead of years from now.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
I'm starting to come to that realization. I'm starting to rethink this and go back to my original plan of getting a lower res display for there. I was originally thinking of having a EDTV there since I’m going over modulated composite video to the bedroom and LDs would look better at 480p than higher resolutions (relocating the display to the HT room for the rare LD viewing). I would have loved to have put a 32" EDTV plasma there but I don't know of any currently being made (nor any EDTVs for that matter). I then got U-Verse installed with the HD option. Since the recent install I’ve decided that HD would be my main fare back there now so I should go with a HDTV. I use a component connection from the U-Verse TV secondary STB situated in the bedroom though HDMI is available as well and of course the other analogs. I now must decide if I can live with an LED LCD FP there or try and find a good SD CRT (might have to be used rather than new due to availability). The repair tech argued that you don’t need HD on a 32” display. I used to think that also but now I’m starting to believe that I would notice the difference at my three foot or less viewing distance. I would hate having to give up the extra foot or so depth on the display that I saved going from a CRT to a FP and I also wanted the latest tech but unfortunately it looks like there isn’t much great tech in the 32” HDTV size.


Since a high performing 32” HDTV doesn’t seem to be available is there any other non-HDTV FP that would deliver superior black levels and video performance or are we still faced with the same basic technologies? I’d even step down a size if I could get the video fidelity I’m looking for. Darn Kuro … you can just never be satisfied with less after living with such a high quality image that those panels deliver.
 

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I have the 40" B650 and I think the blacks are fine. Took me a while to get them right, but I think it would satisfy you. Now, from following the B650 thread I note that different screen sizes use different manufactures for the panel and that might affect the performance in the smaller sizes.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by xortam /forum/post/16947636


...Is there any other 32" HD display (preferably a FP) that might do better in a totally dark room?

You might want to look at the Panasonics. They utilize the excellent IPS Alpha panel that has been very well received. My local KABC news station did a story several months ago with Consumer Reports where they tested all the top brand 26" & 32" LCD TVs and they rated the Panasonics the best, with better black levels and viewing angles and reliability than the others in the test.


My next-door neighbor has a new 37" model that i set up for her and it looks great, and has impressive black levels. And the Beach Mex restaurant nearby has a couple of new 720p 32" models on the wall and they also look great. Good blacks.


Here are three current models:

http://www2.panasonic.com/webapp/wcs...parisonResults
 

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You are gonna have to think outside the box on this one. Is there any way you can re-arrange the room or use a wall mount or floor pedastal mount or ceiling mount and use a 42" 1080p plasma?


For example, a ceiling mount can be used to hang a TV above the foot of the bed which will achieve the 5' minimum reccomended seating distance for a 42" widescreen, while not using any floor space and not overhanging any walkway. A ceiling mount is basicly a ceiling bracket and telescoping tube with a conventional tilting wall mount on the bottom, at monoprice they cost $25 or so plus the wall bracket of your choice.


My reccomendation is the Panasonic Viera TC-P42S1, about $900 street price, a gorgeous new 2009 plasma model with 1080p.


Alternatively for less critical viewing a 720p model such as the Panasonic TC-P42X1 plasma would be around $650 street price.


A good alternative for the ceiling mount (I admit they are hard to install) is a floor pedastal, which will also easily accomodate 1-2 A/V components. This creates a small obstruction at the foot of the bed when changing linens, but not bad overall. However the cost of this alternative is $300-$600 depending upon what you buy.


The slickest approach is to have a retractable HDTV that sinks into what appears to be a shallow bureau or blanket chest at the foot of the bed. This starts at $800 and you can easily spend $2000 on Ethan Allen's fine hardwood furniture - but spouses tend to like the "nothing visible" approach.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·

Quote:
Originally Posted by av.pallino /forum/post/16964705


The best small 32 inch FP I've seen is the bang and olufsen. They are local dimming LED and similar blacks to my Pio 151FD.

Thanks for the heads up ... that sounds great! Do you have a model number on the B&O? I'll look into it in a bit.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·

Quote:
Originally Posted by zack8322 /forum/post/16965716


I have the 40" B650 and I think the blacks are fine. Took me a while to get them right, but I think it would satisfy you. Now, from following the B650 thread I note that different screen sizes use different manufactures for the panel and that might affect the performance in the smaller sizes.

I haven't viewed the 650 too much yet so I should do the swap and see how I like it there. I checked it out at Fry's when I was comparing the two side-by-side but didn't get much time with it. The salesman wanted to go home as the store was about to close so he just had me bring them both home to try and return what I don't want (which may land up being both of them). I did notice the 6000 was showing blacks with a blue tint in the store while the 650 didn't have that issue much but I think I've corrected that now here at home. I did watch the 650 in my dark living room the other night but didn't play with the settings enough to give it a fair chance yet. The blacks didn't look much worse than the 6000 but still not acceptable.


When you say the blacks are fine on the 650 ... can you get the black side bars nearly as black as the bezel in a dark room? Will you share your settings with me? Did you play with the white balance? I’ve tweaked that some too and got some improvement in the image. I would love to see some settings that will get this display to deliver a proper black level but I doubt it can. I may just have a more critical eye than you. I do still need to fire up some calibration discs and tweak these displays properly (without owning a light meter at the moment).
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·

Quote:
Originally Posted by RandyWalters /forum/post/16965864


You might want to look at the Panasonics. They utilize the excellent IPS Alpha panel that has been very well received. My local KABC news station did a story several months ago with Consumer Reports where they tested all the top brand 26" & 32" LCD TVs and they rated the Panasonics the best, with better black levels and viewing angles and reliability than the others in the test.

One of the reasons I landed up with the Samsung was because it has a Dynamic Contrast feature which comes in handy for viewing in this application. I don't want to disturb the sleeping wife when the content turns to a brightly lit scene but I need to see what's going on in the shadows of darker scenes. Too many times in the past have I woken up the wife only to ask me to turn the brightness down on the CRT TV. I find that a low setting on the Dynamic Contrast works quite well for me. I will check out the Panny's though since I'm not thrilled with I have now.


I don't mind the viewing angle problem with LCDs in this application since I'm dead in front of the display. In fact, a poor viewing angle is a plus for me (wife doesn't need to see everything I'm watching when she's out of the room
).
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·

Quote:
Originally Posted by Gary McCoy /forum/post/16966498


You are gonna have to think outside the box on this one. Is there any way you can re-arrange the room or use a wall mount or floor pedastal mount or ceiling mount and use a 42" 1080p plasma? …

No. There are a number of reasons that I can’t go larger or relocate the placement of this TV. The dimensions of these 32” FPs work perfectly for this location. The wife was balking on having me get even as large as a 32” HDTV but she didn’t have a good feel of how it would look there. She now agrees that a 32” isn’t too big for this spot but any bigger would be a problem even if I could live with watching a 42” from only three feet away. The TV sits in front of a closet so I could get creative about setting it into the closet but that presents a lot of problems along with the time and effort to adapt the area and still be able to use the rest of the closet. A bigger display is just going to be more of a disturbance to the sleeping wife so 32” is as big as I’m going to go for a bedside TV.

Quote:
… Alternatively for less critical viewing a 720p model such as the Panasonic TC-P42X1 plasma would be around $650 street price. ...

I was originally considering placing a 720p HDTV there (since 480p EDTVs don’t seem to be available) because I wanted something that would display my old LDs better than the big 60” Kuro plus I was watching everything via modulated composite. Now that I have U-Verse TV and HD in the room, that will be my main fare so I want to optimize for that. A 720p display would still do just fine there for HD versus 1080p but are there any 720p FPs with excellent black levels? I’ll look into the recommendations.
 

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OK. I used a Samssung LN-32A450C (32", 720p LCD with semi-gloss screen) on a tilt/swivel wall mount in a difficult location where the desired space was a small wall section between the entrance door and closet. The wife is happy with it, and views it from 7' away. I calibrated two viewing modes for different ambient lighting. "Movie" mode is calibrated for darkness and in this case the backlight setting was 4. More commonly, "Standard" mode is calibrated for moderate incandescent lighting. I did discover that the "Dynamic" mode on a Samsung cannot actually be calibrated due to the variable brightness/contrast, don't bother trying.


One possibility for a bedroom is finding an older but still usable direct-view CRT. The later Sony VVegas and RCA/ProScan models around 32-36" have excellant blacks and good geometry. But they do lack HDMI inputs which means that disk playback is limited to 480p on the analog inputs, not that bad on a 32" screen.
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·

Quote:
Originally Posted by Gary McCoy /forum/post/16967570


OK. I used a Samssung LN-32A450C (32", 720p LCD with semi-gloss screen) on a tilt/swivel wall mount in a difficult location where the desired space was a small wall section between the entrance door and closet. The wife is happy with it, and views it from 7' away. I calibrated two viewing modes for different ambient lighting. "Movie" mode is calibrated for darkness and in this case the backlight setting was 4. More commonly, "Standard" mode is calibrated for moderate incandescent lighting. I did discover that the "Dynamic" mode on a Samsung cannot actually be calibrated due to the variable brightness/contrast, don't bother trying. …

Wouldn’t a Samsung 650 be as least as good as a 450 720p for black levels and overall video performance or are the panels that different in quality? I realize that you couldn’t calibrate a dynamic contrast setting but I can calibrate it with it off (maybe for morning medium-low ambient light viewing) and work off of that to derive "no ambient light" viewing settings. BTW, is the light on the bottom of the 6000s supposed to be Samsung’s attempt at bias lighting? I haven’t gotten around to reading the manual or even any of the marketing literature yet on these displays.

Quote:
… One possibility for a bedroom is finding an older but still usable direct-view CRT. The later Sony VVegas and RCA/ProScan models around 32-36" have excellant blacks and good geometry. But they do lack HDMI inputs which means that disk playback is limited to 480p on the analog inputs, not that bad on a 32" screen.

I stated in my second post that the TV repair tech recommended a used Sony. The wife hate’s the idea of putting a big deep CRT back into place there after living with the thinness of the 6000 FP but one’s gotta do what one’s gotta do.


The U-Verse installer said that component looks better on these STBs than HDMI so that’s all I’ve tried so far (don’t even have an HDMI cable, only DVI and no HDMI-DVI adapter). Apparently the HDMI chips get too hot where they’re placed in these STBs and they also pick up some noise so they’re problematic. I’d be driving it via the STB 95% of the time and it can scale down to 720p, 480p, or 480i as well as the native 1080i. I haven’t tried to compare the scalars of the STB versus the displays yet since I’ve mostly been sticking with the native 1080i except when dubbing to an NTSC DVDR.
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·

Quote:
Originally Posted by tbird8450 /forum/post/16967578


At a 32" size, I don't think you're going to do much better than what you've already tried. You're certainly not going to match the performance of your 60".

I wouldn't expect to match the performance of my 60" Kuro except with another 9G Kuro though there are IQ advantages with going to a smaller screen size. I just want something that I can place there where I won't be frustrated looking at the greyish side bars and lack of dimensionality and such that you suffer when not having deep blacks as a foundation.
 

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I have a Panasonic 32LX700 in my bedroom which is very dark and it gets a fantastic picture with outstanding blacks. It gets about the best LCD picture that I have seen and I've seen quite a few different brands and models. My choices were between the Panny and the Sonys and the Panny won out with better color and a sharper picture. By the way both LCDTVs had the 120Hz Pro Motion feature. Good luck.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by xortam /forum/post/16967400


I haven't viewed the 650 too much yet so I should do the swap and see how I like it there. I checked it out at Fry's when I was comparing the two side-by-side but didn't get much time with it. The salesman wanted to go home as the store was about to close so he just had me bring them both home to try and return what I don't want (which may land up being both of them). I did notice the 6000 was showing blacks with a blue tint in the store while the 650 didn't have that issue much but I think I've corrected that now here at home. I did watch the 650 in my dark living room the other night but didn't play with the settings enough to give it a fair chance yet. The blacks didn't look much worse than the 6000 but still not acceptable.


When you say the blacks are fine on the 650 ... can you get the black side bars nearly as black as the bezel in a dark room? Will you share your settings with me? Did you play with the white balance? I've tweaked that some too and got some improvement in the image. I would love to see some settings that will get this display to deliver a proper black level but I doubt it can. I may just have a more critical eye than you. I do still need to fire up some calibration discs and tweak these displays properly (without owning a light meter at the moment).

Check out the B650 thread and the B650 calibration thread, lots of info and settings. I just recently posted mine again in a thread, but here they are:


Movie mode

Back light 4-5

Contrast 99

Brightness 46

Sharpness 15

Color 49

Tint 51/49


Black tone and DC OFF

Gamma +1

Color Space Auto

WB 23, 23, 21, 23, 13, 18

Flesh tone 0

Edge E. Off


color temp WARM II

DNR OFF

and 5/1 for Auto motion.


There are a lot more posted, try a few if you are not happy with mine. differing panels may have an effect on these settings. I initially disliked this set very much since the black levels were nowhere near those of my pro calibrated plasma. These create an image that might have better blacks than my plasma. And no, I don't think you might be pickier than me.....


This is a fine unit and I would wholeheartedly recommend it except for the issue all LCds share and that is off angle viewing, it is poor at best. If you had space for a bigger unit i say go Panny plasma, as a secondary set I love my 42X1, it is what I recommend to everyone that asks me what to get as a starter set. Great image and great value. If they have a bigger budget I tell them to move up in the line or look at some of the Sammy's.
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·

Quote:
Originally Posted by zack8322 /forum/post/16968356


Check out the B650 thread and the B650 calibration thread, lots of info and settings. I just recently posted mine again in a thread, but here they are: ...

I checked out the 650 and 6000/6100 threads some before picking up the displays. I've tried settings like those that you posted already. I haven't tried your white balance settings though and I'll give them a try tonight.


See the above posts in regards to size and viewing angle.
 
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