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Have I made the right Decision?


I have purchased the KV40XBR800 instead of the KF50XBR800 GWII and I have till wed morning to Change my mind and get the KF instead.


4:3 instead of 16:9, 40†instead of 50â€, 27†thick instead of 16â€, 315lbs instead of 120lbs. All of these points are making rethink my decision. The main reason I picked the KV over the KF was PQ and versatility. Right now I am watching a 32†5 year old low end Sony and the picture is pretty good, so going to a 40†XBR should a been a big improvement in both size and quality. Also I usaed the $1,000 saving to buy a High End Yamaha DTS receiver.


So have I made the right decision?
 

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If you can live with the widescreen sources at a smaller size, then I'd personally stay with the 40XBR800 over the GWII. The 40" picture quality is much better. The 40" just has a much more vivid pciture than the 50". The 4:3 sources will be just about the same size. True, the cosmetics (depth & weight) are better on the GWII but how often will you move the TV?


I'm still waiting on getting an HDTV. I have a Sony 35" 35S42 and it has a good picture but just not HDTV. I looked at both the GWII and the Samsung 5065 DLP and just am not sold on the picture quality on either. I've been looking at the 36HS500 and the 40XBR800 and like both. The picture is actually better on the 36" though. The step from the 36" to the 40" was a little disappointing too. I've seen the 36HS500 locally for as low as $1690 but the best price I've seen locally on the 40XBR800 was $2699 (10%off XBR televisions at a place called Sound Waves). I really like the picture on the Sony directview HDTVs better than any TV I've seen yet but I've decided (a least for now) to wait and see how the Panasonic 52DL52 looks before I make a purchase. I've seen this TV advertised on the internet for just over $3600 and it's weight and depth is similar to the GWII.


To sum up, it really comes down to a personal preference. The GWII is really neat looking and has nice cosmetics, but in return you sacrifice black levels as well as a bright vivid picture (vivid at least in my opinion). You also run the risk of bad pixels on the GWII. These were enough to steer me away but it really all comes down to your personal preference.


- Greg
 

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How about a third possibility, i.e., a CRT-based RPTV, 50" or larger?


(A 50" 16:9 HDTV-ready television will give you slightly more 4:3 image than the 40XBR800, and a LOT bigger widescreen image. You can get smaller, tabletop CRT or LCD (Panasonic) RPTVs, but you will have a smaller-than-40" 4:3 image size.)


(Note: Hitachi seems to be favored by a lot of people over Sony when it comes to the low-to-mid-priced CRT RPTVs.)


It will give you a better picture than the 50XBR800 (which I have), and a better picture when it comes to DVDs and HDTV than the 40XBR800.


It will weigh less than the 40XBR800, though more than the 50XBR800.


It won't need a $350 - $500 stand like the 40XBR800.


Downsides: 50" (and up) CRT RPTVs take up more space than either the 50XBR800 or 40XBR800 (both of which you can place your components under, on a TV stand). CRT RPTVs have "burn-in" potential (so does the 40XBR800, but much, much, much less so). Convergence and focus, etc., can be do-it-yourself-service-menu-weekend-long tweaking jobs, if you don't want to give $300 to an ISF technician -- but some people enjoy this aspect of RPTVs (i.e., playing engineer).
 

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eweiss,


I am not sure the CRT RPTV has a better picture in all respects than a GWII. The blacks are a definite winner for the CRT based systems, but from what I have heard the GWII can beat most CRT RPTV's on HD resolution. Most people have not seen a HD test pattern on these TV's so they are only comparing live images or 480p test patterns.


A fellow here was able to see some 1080i test patterns on some high quality CRT RPTV's and claimed they resolved about 80% of what the GWII is capable of resolving. I was not there myself, but I believe he saw those results.


I also think the GWII might be brighter than many CRT RPTV's. I know mine works much better in difficult lighting than my mother in-laws 54" Mitsubishi for example.


CRT RPTV's also suffer from more problems with off-axis viewing that should be considered.


I also can see the grid pattern from a CRT display at normal viewing distances. However, I can't see any screen door effect from the LCD at the same distance.


I think the GWII is better or equal to most other TVs on some material depending on the level of brightness of the source. My GWII looks as good as any I have seen on the PBS HD feed when the image is bright and on animated DVD's like Toy Story II. The resolution and smooth color field of the GWII is one of its greatest strengths. Dark material like Blade Runner or Das Boot is where the black levels become an issue, but I still find the performance acceptable with proper back lighting. Everyone has there own preferences of course.


I found out it is possible to see screen update artifacts on the GWII which you may want to see if it bothers you. I have been seeing checker board type images that last about 100 milliseconds on my GWII with some HD material. These are apparently caused by the LCD updating half the pixels followed by the other half. I thought it must be in the source, but have been told it is the LCD technology itself. This effect is usually observed on commercials when they quickly place a high contrast image over a white field.


I personally think a Pioneer Elite has a great picture in many respects, but it does have a few more limitations than size and burn-in.



xb1032,


I believe the vivid picture problem you are seeing in the store is related to the out of the box gamma being set too low and the dark gray blacks. The picture quality improves greatly if you adjust the gamma to something closer to 2.2 instead of what I believe is about 1.8 to 2.0 out of the box. The blacks become much less of a problem with a higher gamma.
 

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Quote:
Originally posted by umr
eweiss,


I am not sure the CRT RPTV has a better picture in all respects than a GWII.
I defer to your more expert evaluation. My experience with HD on the GWII is in-store live/taped feeds -- not resolution comparison.


It's nice to know that my GWII will do a great job on HD when I move up in the world to HD.
 

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umr,


I made my comparison is based off of what I saw in the store by setting the GWII to vivid. That was about the best that I could do. I've never actually seen a TV calibrated by a service technician so I really don't know how much better improvement is actually made after a calibration.


But from what I saw, I can't imagine the TV getting the kind of picture coming from the 40XBR800 or 36XBR800. The picture on the GWII was definitely good, Shapness was great, but it just didn't have the bright colors and black levels that I want out of a HDTV. It all boils down to personal preference. I think that I prefer more 'vividness' out of a picture than do most. A lot of people on this board really like the GWII and the Samsung 507 but neither of them have quite the vividness that I want. I was actually considering buying the 50XBR but I decided against it because I wasn't satisfied with the vividness & risk of bad pixels.
 

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Aside from the black levels I found the image quality of the Grand Wega to be excellent. I did see some artifacting but the image was brighter and sharper then the CRT RPTVs and the screen geometry far superior to the larger FD-Trinitron Wegas. I like the overall image quality of the direct view Wegas though and I have a small one in the bedroom and an 21" FD-Trinitron monitor for my PC.


However, I find the screen size of even the 40" direct view to be too small for Widesceen material and too heavy to ever move. The CRT RPTV's were too large and too dim for my taste. There brightness falls off dramtically when viewed off axis.


I plan to buy the 60" GWII (I was going to buy the 50 but my wife and I decided it wasn't quite as big as we would like).
 

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There is absolutely no comparison between the kv-40xbr800 and the kf-50xbr800. The 40" tube is WAY better in all aspects of picture quality--bright, vivid, sharp, defined, accurate--the best tv, in my opinion, for the money. I like the picture of the Sony 40" better than any plasma I've ever seen, in fact! Granted, the Sony is 4:3, 320 Ibs., and over 2 feet deep, but I would match it up with cable, vcr, dvd, hdtv, whatever, to any tv in the world--by far the best tube in existance (looks, ease of use, and PQ). If letterbox bars don't bother you too much with DVD or hdtv, and if the cosmetics are ok, then you have definitely made the right decision. The LCD is a great tv for it's size, but these two models aren't even in the same ballpark. And people can say what they want, and throw around all the statistics that they want, but I have seen these side by side numerous times---the difference is massive. GOOD CHOICE!!
 

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One problem with the large Trintron Wegas that really bugs me is the screen geomerty. Straight lines are often curved on these sets. FWIW I do own a 20" Wega.
 
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