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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Sorry for the long lack of news regarding my new 64PP9751. It arrived late yesterday afternoon and by the time I got things set up it was pretty late. And since I had to steal the VGA cable from my home office monitor (more on that later) I was without PC for the rest of the TV viewing evening.


My euphoria was a bit short lived. Overnight the Nor’easter the local (Boston) weather guys have been predicting finally hit. By the time the 6:30 am news came on we’d already seen 2 – 2.5 inches of rain which lasted from midnight last night until approx 4:00 this afternoon. Soooooooooo, rather than write this review first thing this morning like I had originally planned, I’ve been pumping water out my basement (and my parents basement, and the warehouse at work…).


Enough of my sob story--on with the review!


The unit arrived in good shape save for the protective screen, which had been chafed pretty badly by the clip-on display frame. This also happened with my 9905 and I suspect happens to every one of the units. Philips really should consider shipping these sets with the display frame unattached—it clips onto the set in less than 30 seconds and would prevent what I expect is a pricey service visit to replace the damaged parts. After wheeling the unit in place I began connecting cables and ran into snafu number one. The 5 BNC connectors from the 9905 have been replaced with RCA plugs. Determined to use my VGA to 5 BNC cable, I took a ride to Rat Shack and picked up 5 BNC-to-Phono adapters.


With everything now cabled properly I powered the unit up, switched to Aux 4 (HD Y Pb Pr) and am immediately greeted with a VERY magenta image of my HTPC desktop. No problem—I’ve seen this before on my 9905. I just need to select the “Input Type†from the set’s menu. Unfortunately, this menu category, which on the 9905 included an option for “RGB Directâ€, has been eliminated from the 9751. It appears that this input now only accepts Y Pb Pr / H V. The good news is that the set also includes a VGA input (Aux 5 RGB VGA). The bad news? I don’t have 15’ VGA Cable. Determined to make this work, I pack the kids in the car and head out to the local CompUSA. What are the odds they’ll have a 15’ VGA cable? Slim AND none. A ten foot cable? Nope. A six foot cable? Wrong. A VGA extension cable? Bingo. I’m pretty sure I have a 6’ VGA cable at home somewhere so I buy the extension and head home to finish up.


Now, where’s that VGA cable? Oh yeah—I remember, it’s on my monitor in the home office. After RE-cabling, powering the set up, and switching to Aux 5 the color now looks OK but the convergence and geometry look the pits. The very top of the image dips down approx one inch at the mid point—no amount to user convergence it going to correct this. What’s weird is that the geometry error is approximately the same for all three guns. I’m pretty sure Philips wouldn’t let the set pass final QC with the geometry this whacked out so I’m not sure what happened. A quick look at the service convergence confirms the bad geometry—looks like I’ll need to use the convergence template to try to touch this up. After attaching the convergence template it becomes quickly apparent that Philips has changed the position of the grid lines—at least I hope they have, otherwise my geometry is VERRRRRY goofed up. I decided to correct the dip at the top of the image using the template as a straight line reference only and to converge Red-to-Green and Blue-to-Green. There’s a bit of twist to some of the grid lines, but I'll have to correct this later, once I have the new template in hand.


The very good new is that the horizontal line bowing I was seeing on my 9905 very much improved on this set.


As a side note, if anyone knows what the new convergence template and service manual part numbers are, I’d appreciate the info.


With the geometry and convergence quickly(???) adjusted, it’s time to take this baby for a ride! Immediately noticeable is the fact that my Windows desktop looks much sharper than it did on my 9905. Icon text, which had been pretty soft at 1064 X 600 now looks much crisper, particularly near the edges of the display. At this point it’s too late to pop in a DVD, so I decided to watch the news using dTV, which looks good despite Dish Network’s extremely over compressed local network feeds.


I don’t have an HD STB yet so I can’t report on how well the set does in that respect. I suspect, however, that it will be outstanding as was the case with the 9905. I ordered a Dish 6000, 8VSB Module, Dish 300 dish with dual LNB, SW64, from Dish Depot this morning (between basement drainings). While typing this post I received a confirmation email--everything was on its way and should be here on 3/28. Mark at Dish Depot was great in all respects; response, pricing, turn around time etc.


General Observations—Good stuff


Fan noise: Much improved over the original 9905 fans. The fans in the 9751 are very quiet and appear to spin at a lower RPM.


Video Input Selection: Improved but not ideal. From what I’ve been able to determine in the short amount play time I’ve had with this model, issuing a channel change when in any mode EXCEPT Aux 4 (HD Y Pb Pr) and Aux 5 (HD RGB-VGA) will cause the set to switch to the Ant A input. From there it should be pretty easy to create a Pronto macro the simulates a press of the Source button along with the appropriate number of up or down directional key presses to select the desired video input. Unfortunately, issuing a channel change while in the Aux 4 or Aux 5 modes does nothing. I think a workaround to switch to Aux 5 for example, might be to create a macro that consists of simulating the following button presses:


1. Source Button

2. Delay

3. Up Directional Arrow

4. Delay

5. Up Directional Arrow

6. Delay

7. OK Button

8. Delay

9. Channel Up (or Down)

10 Delay

11. Source Button

12. Delay

13. Up Directional Arrow (Menu selection is now on Aux 5)

14. Delay

15. OK Button


Switching to Aux 4 would require steps 1 – 14 plus the addition of the following steps:


14. Up Directional Arrow (Menu selection is now on Aux 5)

15. Delay

16. OK Button


PIP and Guide Plus: Great additions if you use the NTSC tuners (Ant A & Ant B) and the analog video inputs (Aux 1 – 3). Unfortunately, but not surprisingly, neither of these options is available on Aux 4 and Aux 5.


Multiple Video Mode Switching for Aux1 and Aux 2. Separate menu selections for Aux1 Y Pb Pr and S-video inputs. Ditto for Aux 2. Conceivably, (wild ass guess warning!) you should be able to double up two sources on one input assuming you’re using an AV receiver to switch audio sources.


PRICE!: At this price point, the 9751 is awesome considering it’s video performance and 9†CRTs.



General Observations—Nit Pickin’


My “Owners Manual†and “Setup and Quick Use Guide†consisted of photo copied and stapled documents—not quite appropriate for a set with an MSRP of nearly 8K. And given the fact that the serial number placard sports a manufacturing date of November 2000, you’d think they would have had time to include REAL manuals.


The bundled Pronto is the OEM version of the old 1MB model TS1000 NOT the current 2MB TS2000 Model.


Reduced Wide Band Component Video Input Flexibility: I much prefer the 9905’s additional “Input Type†menu selections (RGB Direct. RGB, Y Pb Pr).


The aforementioned chafed screen protector and clip-on frame.



Overall, based on the very limited amount of time I’ve spent in front of it, I’m quite happy with this set. I’ll post some more observations as soon as I can.


Regards -- Steve



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STOP DFAST, BOYCOTT JVC, LONG LIVE HDTV


[This message has been edited by SteveV (edited 03-22-2001).]
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Harlock,


When I was shopping around for a 9905 last October, I quickly discovered that there weren't any to be found anywhere near Boston. I called Philips customer service and explained that I wanted to buy the set but couldn't find anyone that sold it. The CSR went through her list of retailers that "should" be carrying the set--I had been to all of them and had no luck. She suggested I contact the Philips employee store and when I asked if I should give them her name she gave me an authorization code to reference.


The bottom line was approx a 30% discount off of list including free shipping! Unfortunately, Philips now outsources management of the employee store to ALMO (sp?)Distributing and no longer allows consumers to buy directly.


I had a variety of problems with my 9905 and Philips agreed to take it back. And since I had purchased it through the the PES, they grandfathered me for the 9751.


Regards -- Steve


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STOP DFAST, BOYCOTT JVC, LONG LIVE HDTV


[This message has been edited by SteveV (edited 03-23-2001).]
 

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Glad to hear things seem to have advanced over the 9905. I may have misread your initial test, but it wasn't clear how the set performs with standard inputs, say, a DVD test disc with perhaps a grid pattern into the S-video or composite DVD input, or, any other NTSC signal into one of the inputs other than component. You implied there's still bowing, and I wonder if the there's a difference between standard inputs and your component input (a PC?).


Also curious if you can uncover whether this set has 3:2 pulldown for Genesis processing. Suspect it easily could, since the 9905, my Philips contact pointed out, has an early Genesis circuit, and your set likely has updated Genesis processing. This same source mentioned being very impressed with the new Sage/Faroudja chip imaging. It would be nice, since Philips is willing to replace noisy fans, that we might also update deinterlace modules, or perhaps just a single chip, if owners are willing to pay for the change. I've been delighted with the 9905 Genesis images (I get 3:2 pulldown with my DVD machine), but if there's a significant improvement with Sage/Faroudja processing I'd consider updating the 9905. -- John


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[This message has been edited by John Mason (edited 03-23-2001).]
 

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Steve, I have some questions relating to the various aspect ratio modes of this set. Can you help?
  1. IIRC the 9905 (or was it a model before that?) lacked a proportional zoom mode for 4:3 letterbox (aka non-anamorphic) DVDs. Was this fixed for the 64PP9751?
  2. Is there aspect ratio control on 480p sources? ("lock in full")
  3. In 4:3 mode are the side bars gray or black? The 55PP9701 I saw had black side bars, which I think would exacerbate the chances of burn-in problems.[/list=a]

    Thanks, Stephen
 

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Way to go man! I'm so happy you got the set and all that and I can't wait to see a review on the HDTV performance when you get your set top box. Oh let us know how progressive DVD's look to!! You're the first 2001 Philips owner in the forum!! I followed your situation closely because there is no question in my mind that the Philips is the single best HDTV out there. With the 9 inch guns and now the 2001 model with a price around $6500, all I can say is wow!


[This message has been edited by dpak2000 (edited 03-23-2001).]
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Ken,

Thanks!


John,

I no longer use my set-top DVD player so I haven't looked at PQ. I'll be doing some re-cabling when my Dish Networks 6000 HD receiver comes in so I try to hook up my Sony DVP-S7700 and do some testing then. I'm currently using my HTPC and dTV software for deinterlacing and scaling Dish Network DBS material. PQ varies quite a bit depending on how compressed dish's signal is. It's usually very over-compressed and the 9751 does as well as could be expected. It's a shame Dish and DirecTV have taken the quantity over quality approach to their business. I'd gladly lose 30-40% of my available channels for an increase in PQ.


As far as the bowing is concerned it is VERY slight and given that the geometry needs some touching up it may even be possible to improve it more. I only looked at Aux 5 (SVGA) and Ant A (NTSC) geometry. Both looked about the same. I'm not sure about 3:2 pulldown. There's nothing in the literature that I've seen. Maybe LB can shed some light on the topic.


Stephen,

1.) I'm not sure whether or not the 9905 had proportional zoom--I own so few 4:3 DVDs it's hard to remember. Not sure about the 9751. I'll try and check next week.

2.) I use don't have a progressive scan DVD player--just the lowly interlaced output Sony DVP-S7700 http://www.avsforum.com/ubb/wink.gif So I can't comment on the "Lock on Full" issue.

3.) Black side-bars. However, Philips uses an orbiting feature called APAC--Advanced Phosphor Aging Compensation (??). APAC moves the 4:3 image one pixel at a time to prevent burn-in issues. Since it only works for the non-HD/non-PC inputs I haven't seen it in action. From what I've heard it works pretty well.


dpak2000,

Sorry no progressive scan DVD player. However, I can say the DVD playback from my HTPC looks AWESOME--actually better than with my 9905. While HTPC DVD looked very good on my 9905, the image was a bit soft. The 9751's image is much sharper. I suspect the 9905's focus was a bit off.


Thus far, no complaints!


Regards -- Steve


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STOP DFAST, BOYCOTT JVC, LONG LIVE HDTV


[This message has been edited by SteveV (edited 03-24-2001).]
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Quote:
Originally posted by duer:
Steve,


I spoke with the Philips Publications department today.

They said the service manual for the 64PP9751 will not

be ready for another month. Cost will be $35 for the CD

version and $60 for the hard copy version.


The revised ETA for my 9751 is next Wednesday.

Next Wednesday--Cool! You must be getting pretty anxious by now. Did Publications volunteer any info on the Convergence Template by chance?


Regards -- Steve




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STOP DFAST, BOYCOTT JVC, LONG LIVE HDTV
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Quote:
Originally posted by harlock:
Where can one purchase this thing. I can't seem to find it anywhere, on the web or B&M stores.


Harlock


You'd think that Philips and Marantz were on a crusade to keep their flagship models a secret. Back when I was looking for the 9905 there were none in the Boston area despite the fact that we have 4 HD stations. The Marantz HD-6400W; the 9905's rich identical cousin <g> never even made it on the Marantz site. Any while Marantz's version of the 9751 IS on their site, there's something wrong with their web page. Clicking the "specs" link results in the display of a blank page with the words "No Value"--I doubt that this is the mental image the were looking to project.


And while my 9751 indicates a manufacture date of November 2000, there's still no information on this model on the PhilipsUSA site. Oddly, the now discontinued 9905 is still displayed prominently.


Makes me wonder what in the hell they're doing.


Regards -- Steve


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STOP DFAST, BOYCOTT JVC, LONG LIVE HDTV
 
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