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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Well, tonight was a bad night for the new GW II.


So bad that I am right now 100% on the middle of the fence with regard to keeping the TV or returning it, giving up on widescreen solutions for now and just going with their 40" XBR800 tube.


I watched Flyers hockey on Comcast SportsNet tonight and tried every mode and color temperature. Nothing could get the picture to look even remotely like my 36" XBR tube. Every sign on the boards blurred heavily when the camera panned. Every player would go out of focus with movement. The white had to be toned down to such a degree that the picture outside the game looked way too dark.


Worse, while watching a DVD during a dark scene I could not help but notice a bright green dead pixel, from 12 feet back. I then really looked and counted over 50 dead pixels. Most would be virtual imperceptible as they are almost just shadows but there's a solid red one, three bright greens and a cluster of blues. I suspect the brightest ones are actually not a single pixel but several sequential pixels that are out the same way.


I've been tweaking for several days now and the results are very mixed. Some content looks great but then other content just doesn't hold up. I'm actually finding myself getting fatigued watching the set with all the blur that it induces.


Most annoying was that I had to go upstairs to watch the end of the hockey game on my tube set to enjoy it.


Tomorrow the cable guys will be here and will install HDTV. I'm going to give the set a bit more time and if game 7 in HDTV looks great and HDTV channels look great, I'm going to hang in. If I have continued blurring issues and such, the set is going back and I'm going to have to admit total failure for my viewing habits with the current state of widescreen options.


First I had the burn-in issues, picture issues and size issues with the KP-65WV700 attempts. Now I have dead pixels, blurry images, washed out images, etc. LCOS looks to be a possible solution in the future so it might be best for me to cut my losses here, go for the better tube downstairs, bide my time and, in another 12-36 months see where things are then.


What I have liked are the looks of XBox games (even with the blur), most DVD and the size of the screen especially when it comes in such a thin, light design.
 

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Listen to umr, he is a genius. Use PRO mode. BTW, it sounds like your sharpness is way too high. Try turning the sharpness to about 25%, set the user custom advanced picture mode to clarity 100, reality 1. You should see a huge difference.


If you haven't made any user menu adjustments, the picture will NOT look as good as it will once you tweak to your personal preference. Too many people think it should look great out of the box with no changes to default setups. Trust me, that's not true.


Download umr's tweaks and the service manual. Get familiar with it, do the changes (write down the originals) and see what happens. I've had my set for a few weeks. It is incredible. Just give it some time and tweaking. HD and DVD are absolutely incredible and the SD is the best I've seen on a tv this size. Since your going from a low resolution to a high resolution set, you're now truly seeing how poor the PQ actually is.


Let us know your results.
 

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Hang in, especially through tonight for Flyers on CSN-HD (and Sixers tomorrow night). I've been enjoying my GWII 60 since January, particularly HD and DVD, and just recently got up the nerve to implement some of the basic UMR service menu tweaks. The improvement for SD stuff was noticeable. I also recommend that, if you do not need a cable box, run a cable line directly from the wall into the built-in tuner. I get much better PQ on the Comcast analog tier (2-99) this way, especially since making the UMR tweaks. I can't comment on dead/stuck pixels, because I haven't noticed any, and try my hardest not to look for them.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Quote:
Originally posted by umr
What have you tweaked in the service menu?
Not a whole lot. I changed only Input 1 until late last night (after this first post) when I also changed the coax input which is what the game came through so theoretically nothing should have really bothered it.


What I did change on Input 1 (which is just used for DirecTV via a DirecTV with Tivo unit, and not what I watched the game on) in order:


OSP from 0 to 1 (nice increase in sharpness)

PKNG from 25 to 0 (amazing decrease in perception of artifacts)


VGAM from 28 to 31 (things didn't change much)


CDLY from 4 to 7 (couldn't notice any difference)


And then I stopped right there as Page 6 started off with how hard the next section was and which is where I really started thinking I should ask for help.


But again, the game was watched on RG6 input, raw basic cable.


Picture had started out just over 50%. Brightness was just below it. Sharpness was around 40%. I moved all three all over in an attempt to help and nothing really did.


This was all initially done in Pro mode. I then switched off to Mild which was better initially and finally went with Standard/Neutral. But it was still a mess.


With respect to Clarity and Reality, as I mentioned elsewhere (and to be clear, Reality is up, Clarity is horizontal and right) I notice a huge difference. If I go to all clarity (extreme right) and no reality (at the bottom) then the picture goes from sharp to blurry. In fact, going the other way dramatically increased the picture in XBox games via S-Video and removed much of the blurring effect when game elements moved. It also stopped the wierd effect of SD DirecTV images of anchors and such from going from extremely sharp to extremely blurry as they moved.


I should say that every tight shot of the game looked very good. It was when they showed a typical backed-off shot with many players moving about and LOTS of white that the picture went to complete hell.


Of course none of this says anything about the dead pixels but even with them, it's not bad. The bright green one is now showing itself to me in many shots (it's about an inch above where a typical 4:3 show HORIZONTAL black bar shows when they put out a show in widescreen and about 3/4 of the way across the screen).
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Quote:
Originally posted by trickd
I also recommend that, if you do not need a cable box, run a cable line directly from the wall into the built-in tuner. I get much better PQ on the Comcast analog tier (2-99) this way, especially since making the UMR tweaks. I can't comment on dead/stuck pixels, because I haven't noticed any, and try my hardest not to look for them.
That's the way it is now. Since I have a dish, I only keep basic cable around for Comcast SportsNet and a backup of the locals and such if the dish picture goes out.
 

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If you have cable for predominantly CSN, I think you'll be pleasantly surprised with CSN-HD. Even for the non-HD broadcasts (like last night's game), the PQ is very solid, and goes, in my novice judgment, from "more than acceptable" to "very good" when watched in "normal" rather than a stretch mode. PQ on the HD broadcasts (Flyers, Sixers, Phillies) ranges from excellent to breathtaking (putting aside random and infrequent pixellation, as noted before).
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
I prefer to watch 4:3 with the bars. The stretch modes just annoy me for the most part. Drove me nuts on the classic RPTV's as the gray bars were quite distracting and then you constantly worried about burn-in. I'm a bit concerned that you and I watched the same game on the same feed and apparently you found it very good to excellent and I found it unwatchable. What full settings did you run it in?


One thing I don't understand. I thought All the games were in HDTV. But then again, I guess games out of Toronto wouldn't qualify as they're not being shot in HDTV most likely. Doh. Good thing tonight's game is at home.


Trust me, I really want to hang in. I'm literally depressed over this whole affair. This is a more than $5,000 investment. I spent $1,700 on my 36" XBR just about 5 years ago (a great price at that time as retail was $2,500 and most were discounted to $2,200). My thinking is an investment of this much more should be a breeze to impress me over my other set. Is that being unrealistic? Yes, I know a tube is hard to beat, but all this set would have to do is to show SD decently across all material (not just basic shows) and to excel with DVD's and HDTV. DVD's, for the most part, have blown me away, at least the more epic ones (Dances With Wolves, Lord of the Rings, Matrix, etc.)
 

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I was watching last night on CSN-HD (channel 172). Although the broadcast was only SD (you're right about ALL road games being SD), the PQ is noticeably better, particularly on "normal mode" than standard def CSN (channel 35) through either the STB (Moto 5100 HD box) or right from the wall. I watch in "pro" mode, and it appears I have made the same SM tweaks as you (when you make them after you get the HD box, they have to be made not only for each input, but for each signal type within an HD input (i.e., on a 480i signal, 1080i, etc.). I usually watch in "wide zoom," but last night I watched about half the game in "normal," just to compare the PQ (as usual, the PQ in normal is noticeably better).


Not all home games are HD. At least for this year, CSN-Philly and CSN-Baltimore/Washington are sharing one mobile HD prodution unit, which shuttles up and down 95. For example, Game 1 of the Sixers/Hornets series at FU Center was not HD, as the truck was in Washington doing the Caps/Lightning game in HD. Game 2 tomorrow night is HD, as is Thursday's Phillies game. There is a full schedule of HD broadcasts on the CSN website. It is my understanding from sources on this forum that next year there will be full-time in-house HD production in both the FU Center and the new Phils' stadium, so presumably all home games on CSN will be in HD.
 

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This is just my opinion. The expectation of Standard Definition programming for a lot of us are very high. We like to compare the output of GWII/DLP to how well our 36 inches TV performed. I find this comparison to be unfair. The problem is not on the TV but on the compressed source. Satellite or Digital Cable compressed their signals. The compression is worse on non-premium channels. When you think, you are tweaking the GWII on a specific channel, do not expect the same output for another channel (that might be compressed further). I have compared the OTA signal as well and I can say that it looks better but not all the time.


DVD/HD: I think we all agree that the TV performs well out of the box (with very little tweaking).


SD Material: Here is a whole different ball game. My second TV (the replacement) has performed very well out of the box. I have not tweaked the Service Menu and right now I have it on Video 3 through composite. As UMR suggested composite gives better PQ than S-Video. I also have an HTPC with a capture card and Dscaler. I watched a lot of basketball through my HTPC because I can control the aspect ratio in combination with Dscaler, it gives you a better picture than the composite line.

Quote:
Worse, while watching a DVD during a dark scene I could not help but notice a bright green dead pixel, from 12 feet back. I then really looked and counted over 50 dead pixels. Most would be virtual imperceptible as they are almost just shadows but there's a solid red one, three bright greens and a cluster of blues. I suspect the brightest ones are actually not a single pixel but several sequential pixels that are out the same way.
If I were you, I will ask for a replacement. A dead pixel visible from 12 feet is annoying.
 

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I really feel fortunate after reading a lot of these posts. I thought my cable signal was average at best, it is just basic Comcast cable, but it looks really good to great on my GWII 50".


I watch it in 'Standard' mode with the color temp set at 'Neutral'. The tweaks in 'pro' mode actually made it a tad too dark and grainy. Interesting. The hockey games last night were great looking. I even watch my SD in 'Wide Zoom' and the PQ was way more than acceptable.


I would be REALLY surprised if my basic cable signal was THAT much better than everyone else's, but I guess it has to be, especially when UMR's tweaks actually make it slightly worse (again, PLEASE take no offense at my opinion of UMR's tweaks, they just did not improve anything for me and in comparison, make SD look grainier and darker, not a 'bash' on the tweaks, just a fact for me).


Maybe I got a GWII with different/newer factory store service menu settings !?!?!? I HIGHLY doubt that, but I can't figure out why else I have NO issues with SD and the tweaks don't make improvements.


Oh well...
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Quote:
Originally posted by motjes2
This is just my opinion. The expectation of Standard Definition programming for a lot of us are very high. We like to compare the output of GWII/DLP to how well our 36 inches TV performed. I find this comparison to be unfair.
I agree with you in principle with one major exception. A TV must present TV well to be of value. My 36" XBR does with ease. I'm willing to bet the 40" would as well. I'm also willing to bet future technologies will have no issue at some point (or at least as few as our XBR tubes).


My issue is that television (SD) is still the main viewing habit of most of us. If the picture there is bad, and again, the hockey game was nearly unwatchable, then it's not worth a whole lot to us. It's sort of like having a car that runs great in reverse. The problem is, I mainly drive forward.


I do not think it's unfair to expect a $5,000 TV to provide a decent picture from a direct, very clean basic cable source. Comcast SportsNet is one of their best pictures. CNN and other basic cable programs look just fine, if a bit grainy, but it just seems right now to me that I've run into the hard wall of LCD weaknesses, blur and wash-out. I do HOPE that I can tweak my way out of this but I'm troubled by having to go through so much work just to get an acceptable picture. 40 minutes with Video Essentials on my XBR tube and I was set, so far for the life of the TV.

Quote:
If I were you, I will ask for a replacement. A dead pixel visible from 12 feet is annoying.
Very much so. The odd part is, I see them all over the screen on a black screen but these few are BIG. It's as if the others are stuck in a color but not really illuminated or are in some way muted. But then these few (and there's a blue set that's a 1/8" in size) are very obvious and larger than the others. Wish I knew more about the technology to be able to explain why the difference happens.
 

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Agrajag,


the problem with SD most probably is with the source rather than the TV. When I watch WB over the air here in NYC, the signals looks very much like Fox WideScreen format. Very PQ and no complains. When I change to satellite (same station), the signal is 10 times worse!!.


I will not hesitate if I were you about the dead pixels. Get a replacement while you can.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
It's a 30 day thing. I happened to mention to the sales guy that the Internet has Service Menu tweaks to improve things but didn't say a word about my using them. But when I called to warn them about the possible return and the dead pixels their first comment was, "Well, you probably caused them when you went into the service mode." Yeah, right.


If it comes to it, I'll point out that the remote has a button for the the "Service Menu" right on it and fully admit to using it.


HDTV just showed up. It's MUCH better including standard basic cable. Tonight is still the big test to me. HBO HD looked really nice of course though I wasn't blown away. It looked like DVD to me. Of course it was just Mothman Prophecies and not anything impressive.


Oh, the installer said HDTV receivers don't support 5.1. He had no idea what the single Digital Out was for.
 

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Very interesting that you notice significant improvement in standard basic cable. There seems to be a large number of users of the Moto 5100 box (myself included) who report poor PQ on the standard analog tiers, and reports of various firmware updates intended to address this. If you have not yet reviewed it, there is a lengthy thread under HD Hardware devoted to the 5100, with an excellent FAQ by miatasm. Definitely worth checking out for any 5100 user.


Good luck with CSN-HD tonight, and go Flyers! I'll await your impressions.


As for installers, my Comcast installer not only had no clue about digital audio (he watched me hook it up the digital coax out to the receiver), he also had no component cables on hand, and politely tried to persuade me to return the ones I was pre-armed with in favor of using his "free" RCA composite cables which would "give me the same thing." Scary.
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Well, here in our Comcast area we don't get the Motorola boxes. We get Scientific Atlanta boxes.


And yes, the installer was quite clueless. In fact, this one didn't understand how my cable splitter worked!
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
I will also say that so far, HBO HD has been very washed out. The locals look great, especially CBS (ABC looks not nearly as nice so far which is a 720p picture which makes me wonder about their view that 720p is imperceptible from 1080i). Still awaiting the DTV Loop on PBS here. Starts at 8pm.
 

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Quote:
Originally posted by Agrajag
...Picture had started out just over 50%. Brightness was just below it. Sharpness was around 40%. I moved all three all over in an attempt to help and nothing really did.


This was all initially done in Pro mode. I then switched off to Mild which was better initially and finally went with Standard/Neutral. But it was still a mess.


With respect to Clarity and Reality, as I mentioned elsewhere (and to be clear, Reality is up, Clarity is horizontal and right) I notice a huge difference. If I go to all clarity (extreme right) and no reality (at the bottom) then the picture goes from sharp to blurry. In fact, going the other way dramatically increased the picture in XBox games via S-Video and removed much of the blurring effect when game elements moved. It also stopped the wierd effect of SD DirecTV images of anchors and such from going from extremely sharp to extremely blurry as they moved.


I should say that every tight shot of the game looked very good. It was when they showed a typical backed-off shot with many players moving about and LOTS of white that the picture went to complete hell.


Of course none of this says anything about the dead pixels but even with them, it's not bad. The bright green one is now showing itself to me in many shots (it's about an inch above where a typical 4:3 show HORIZONTAL black bar shows when they put out a show in widescreen and about 3/4 of the way across the screen).
You need to look at some resolution test patterns and something like Microsoft WHQL for deinterlacing performance. The extra sharpness of reality is not reality, but it is fantasy. The reality setting is not adding information, but corrupting it.


You do not appear to understand YC delay. Copying my numbers is not how you set this parameter. You need to correct alignment errors of chroma and luma information with CDLY. The parameter under PIC-BOOST only works for 480i inputs though.


The number of posts with people complaining about the values in the tweaks file appears to be growing. Many of the values are not meant to be used directly. My settings were only included for information purposes (after much begging) in many cases. They are also only of much use if you are doing ALL of the tweaks. A partial implementation will generally require different settings.


I am on the fence about you spending more effort calibrating a set you plan on returning, but I would suggest you adjust GAMM, picture, brightness, sharpness, color and hue to get an idea of what the set can do. This does not mean you copy my settings. You must use your calibration disk to set them properly except for GAMM.


You might just want to bag the whole HD RPTV thing if you are not satisfied after that.
 

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Quote:
I will also say that so far, HBO HD has been very washed out. The locals look great, especially CBS (ABC looks not nearly as nice so far which is a 720p picture which makes me wonder about their view that 720p is imperceptible from 1080i). Still awaiting the DTV Loop on PBS here. Starts at 8pm.
It seems as though your brightness is set too high. I've seen several people on here complain about the "screen door" effect. I don't see this on the set. The blacks may be a little grey, but VERY little (only on very dark scenes). As odd as this sounds, set the contrast HIGHER and the brightness lower (completely opposite of normal RPTVs). This advice is coming from someone who owned a CRT base RPTV before my GWII.
 

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CCsoftball7,


Your suggestions about picture and brightness are very correct. Getting these close to correct are critical for obtaining a good PQ. Unfortunately, I have come across some video devices that are difficult to adjust properly. They are so far off of correct voltage levels that a service level adjustment is required to get it right. Most devices are not able to generate a test pattern like a DVD player can. I believe the Ultimate TV box does and it is very easy to calibrate because of this.
 
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