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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I am in a desperate search for information regarding my HDTV. I have gone to Toshiba (who had no answers whatsoever), they sent me to some local service centers (who also had no answers), who then sent me to a local distributor (etc.....). Very frustrated individual typing here......


I have a Toshiba TN50X81... supposedly top of the line when I got it, and I must say that it does have quite a nice picture on it. However, it is a 4:3 HD display with no Pic Size option to go with it. Also, it does not natively support 720p.


My question is two-fold:


First, what are the possible resolutions on this TV if I were to hook it up to a HTPC? I have seen threads that state any resolution is possible on a HDTV , however, i am really a noob when it comes to resolution vs. refresh rates and such. If it is possible to get 720p (and, indeed, any possible resolution) through a HD display, how is it accomplished? I realize that there are certain PC components that will need to be purchased, but I am more concerned about possibly doing damage to my display if I were to utilize the incorrect refresh rate?


Ideally, I would like to make a completely multi-purpose HTPC for surfing, gaming, DVD, HDTV, etc...., but I don't want to damage my display in the process (and one of the guys at Toshiba said that i needn't worry about refresh rates because it wouldn't damage the TV in the event of an error, just some of the picture wouldn't show up or it wouldn't display anything if the refresh rate was incorrect). Okay, that was a bit more than I intended to ask in the first question, but now on to the...


Second, does anyone know of any sites that house the kind of product information that I'm looking for? The manual that came with the unit is a joke (it only mentions HD possibilites in 2 sentences throughout the entire text, and, even then, it's only in the instructions for hooking up a STB), and the people at Toshiba, though they tried to be as helpful as possible, don't know anything. I would like to have some sort of comprehensive list of the possibilities of my TV (considering how much it costs). Even the link to the thread that gave instructions on setting up resolutions would be helpful since it seems that I cannot find it again by myself.....:confused:


Additional information that might be pertinent: I would be using a Radeon 32mb DDR card for the time being (just for surfing and games, not HDTV reception right now), though if anyone had suggestions for a better card with more possibilites, I would certainly be interested. From what I've read in here, it seems that my little $50 (9 months ago) Radeon is a great card to use for this stuff.


Thanks for any help that might be given,


Pimpa
 

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Pimpa,


First off, Toshiba is WRONG to tell you that you will not damage the set if you feed it the wrong timings!!! Not that I have done it, but I have seen a set damaged.

Anyways, I will try to answer your 2 questions. Your Toshiba is a great set and definitely capable of displaying an incredible image, if you set it up correctly and have a little fun with the service menu (but that is another can of worms). As far as being able to display ANY resolution, that isn't quite possible. I own the 43" version of your set, and have spend a lot of time to get what I think looks great. To start things off, you have to decide if you want to run a 16:9 or a 4:3 display. Unfortunately on our sets, you are limited to running it with 1080i picture size "on" or "off" which translates to compression "on" or "off". If you were to pickup one of the newer models, you have a picture size button where you can select "normal", "letterbox", or "compressed". So make the choice and stick with it. I decided to go with 16:9 and turned the 1080i picture size "on" in the menu. Now using a transcoder, Powerstrip, and a Radeon 32DDR LE with the 7093 beta driver, I am running 540P timings with no overscan. If you are familiar with Powerstrip, the timing and resolution is:

856x484 (with 540p timing) 856,98,72,94,484,26,1,52,37575,336

As for your Radeon 32DDR, it will be fine for DVD playback and most other applications. I don't use mine for any gaming, but I have heard that it is a little weak in that area, but that will be up to you to decide.

If you are willing to spend a good chunk of time tweaking and playing, not to mention a few days of searching this forum for info first, I guarantee that you will not be disappointed with the results of your Toshiba.

I don't know if this is the info you were looking for, but if not, don't hesitate to ask more questions. That's why we are all here on the forum to share info. Good Luck.


Tom
 

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From what I've read techs saying, generally running it at an unsupported resolution won't break it instantly. What is happening is the guns are operating out of spec and can't keep up, making gibberish. If it comes up like that, don't have a heart attack but immediately correct the problem. Leaving it like that for 30 seconds or more could damage it, but I think it is not an instantaneous thing...
 

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Actually, it's usually the horizontal deflection output circuit that breaks when the scanrate is out-of-spec. Back in the day of fixed-frequency computer monitors (which had similar circuitry to some of todays HDTV's) I've seen more than one horizontal output transistor fry instantly when the wrong resolution was selected...


Hopefully most new TV's include a protection circuit to prevent out-of-range scanrates from doing damage, but unless the warranty guarantees coverage, I wouldn't want to find out the hard way. :)
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Hey,


Thanks for the information, guys, it will come in very handy for me. Unfortunately, I will be unable to put any of these to the test right at the moment (just found out I'm moving) but when I do, I will at least have a point to jump off from.


Perhaps someone can answer one more question: per the service menu, is there a trusted site out there that anyone knows of that has a guide to work through that thing? I convinced the first technician that came out to fix the convergence to show me how to do that by myself, and I know how to actually get into the service menu, but i'm just not sure what all the other options are in there. I know that you can do some pretty amazing things once you learn about it, so I'm wondering where to start looking for that info.


Once again, thanks to you all for your time on this,


Pimpa:D
 
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