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Discussion Starter #1
I have owned my Westinghouse SK-32H240s for about 18 months now, and I figured I would share my experience with other owners. If you have had similar problems or have any constructive comments please post!

About the TV

There is some confusion on the boards about this model, especially related to the menus. There are 2 versions, that look identical but contain different hardware:
TW-50601 - This model has the flashy graphic based menu's. It has power supply board PN VLT70039.50 REV5, and I believe the mainboard is based around an ATI chipset (haven't confirmed).
TW-50602 - This model has a simple text based menu structure with no flair. From what I understand, the powerboard is different and based on the unique firmware and menu, I will guess that the mainboard is different as well.

Life of the TV

Initially I was very happy with this TV. It has a great picture for the value, is easy to use, and the price was great. The unit itself looks nice, has great features for fitting non-HD content, and has a ton of settings you can adjust to get things perfect. In fact, you can adjust almost every setting of the TV from the Service Menu. To get there just navigate to the video options menu, type 560529 on the remote, and like magic the service menu pops up. (Dont mess with stuff in here unless you know what you are doing).


After about 6 months of owning the unit I started having problems. The unit was not properly handling HDCP handshaking with an upconverting DVD player causing picture to freeze randomly.


There was an available firmware update, version 1.52 on the website which incorporated a number of "fixes". I downloaded and installed the firmware, which was an easy process. The firmware fixed the HDCP handshake issue, but introduced new problems:

1. TV falls out of "External Speaker" mode if you adjust the volume. This is annoying since my external speaker system needs to the TV volume at 85 to receive a signal.

2. Can no longer adjust volume when no signal is detected. This is annoying when trying to switch to external speakers.

3. HDCP handshaking issues with the PS3... it will flash for 5-30 seconds trying to get things right.

4. Misreporting model in "System Info"... It thinks its a 42" model.


Based on this... don't bother to update the firmware unless you have to. There is no way to revert to the old firmware...which was much better.


Fast forward 8 months and the TV is having problems again. When watching the TV, all of a sudden anything white will become flashing blue (see pic below).



I suspect that this problem is related to the power supply board inside of the TV. I believe that it overheats, and the voltage is supplies to the mainboard wanders causing the TV signal to be scaled "beyond white". This is supported by the fact that you can make the blue go away by adjusting the brightness down (lowering what part of the signal corresponds to white) to a low value.


Also, putting a fan on the powerboard part of the TV so it stays cool, seems to fix the problem (about 85% of the time its good, sometime it still does it).


I tried twice with Westinghouse customer service, and once with Best Buy for some type of support. Since the unit is out of warranty, I was referred to a local repair show. The guys there were nice, but said there was nothing they could do since it would be "impossible to get parts" and "not worth the expense". Another call to Westinghouse referred me to Andrews Electronics in California, where I could order the boards and try replacing them myself.


I would do this, except that a new power board is $130 USD + tax , shipping, and exchange ( I live in Canada). So by the time I had the board it would be around $250, which is a lot especially if it wasn't the only problem. (Pics of the board below)




I modded the TV to try and improve cooling of the power supply board. and it offered some improvement... I still need to keep a fan on the TV to keep it from going blue, but has improved the situation considerably. Newer Westinghouse TV's seem to have vents to cool the boards, so its probably not an issue. Anyway, pictured below is the back of the TV. Note how the "vents" are stamped in for looks, but are not actually vents (they don't penetrate the cabinet)




I opened the vents up with a drill to add cooling:




As I mentioned above, the improvement was moderate. I wouldn't necessarily recommend Westinghouse owners try drilling their cabinets out to fix cooling, its more of a last resort fix.


Interestingly, there is a law firm investigating the high rate of Westinghouse TV failures for a class action lawsuit, if you are a owner you may want to submit your story here:

http://www.lieffcabraser.com/defects...nghouse-hd.htm


If anyone has had problems or a similar experience with Westinghouse, please share!


-Nick
 

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Since you appear to be new to this forum, I'm sure you have missed my earlier rants about the poor quality of Westinghouse LCDs. I personally know four people who have had that brand and all of the Westinghouse TVs have either failed completely or have suffered serious picture quality degradation. Luckily, I am not one of those four people.


Hindsight is always 100%, but once again I would not recommend Westinghouse as anything other than a throwaway brand. Being that is a bottom tier TV, it further proves that you get what you pay for. I hope the class action suit comes to fruition and wish you good luck.
 

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I have had the same problem with the white turning light splotchy blue. I thought it may be heat related, but not sure. Also had some other problems that seemed to be eliminated by using a can of keyboard duster to blow the dust out.

Did you mount a small fan near the TV on the wall?

I also was going to do a firmware update to see if this would be a fix for the problem.

Frustrating.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
I have a set of speakers next to the TV and have a small house fan sitting on top of them blowing across the back of the TV. I also have have been keeping the TV unplugged (flip a wall switch controlling the outlet) when I am not using it.


Between these two things, the TV has actually been working "perfectly" and I have not had any blue problems with it for a while. I even went and calibrated it with DVE and it looks quite nice actually.


I would recommend against the firmware upgrade since it wrecked more than it fixed. Unless your having specific HDMI / HDCP issues with the image freezing randomly I wouldn't bother to upgrade. The firmware update also doesn't fix alternating black/static screens that occur from HDCP handshaking with PS3's.


I have gotten used to keeping the set unplugged and turning the fan on whenever I go to watch it. Beyond that and the earlier problems, it actually hasn't been a bad set...


Good luck!


-Nick
 

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I have the same problem with my 32 lcd westinghouse ,after 20min color start changing to blue and purple , since so many have the same problem ,shows the factory defect parts and needs to be recalled and westhinghouse not willing to do any thing except reffer us to tv repair shop so we all need to take legal action ..
 

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I did something similar as nismonic. Mounted a house fan over the TV, and have it and the set plugged into a power strip. I turn it off every time it's not in use. I have not experienced the problem since.

Here's a pic:
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by grasswhacker /forum/post/16710411


I also was going to do a firmware update to see if this would be a fix for the problem.

Frustrating.

Honestly I wouldnt suggest doing anything firmware related to this set. Especially regarding the MCU.


Westinghouse's website is under construction. You won't be certain if you are getting the right firmware or the complete firmware. I have the 50601 C032A. I was having horrible issues with HDTV and went to do the firmware update. The instructions have you download and unzip a file. You are supposed to rename that file twice onces as cramfs-ap (X), then again as MCU (X). I read thru the instructions several times before I did anything, I thought it was odd to rename the same file with two different names, but the instruction was pretty ambiguous when it came to that point. So I copied them over to a thumbdrive. Disconnected everything. First thumbdrive, a scandisk wasnt compatible with the set even though it was FAT Formatted. I had an old dell thumbdrive and downloaded the firmware, took a few tries to get the update to take, but the MCU update, the set went blank for half an hour. The only thing I can think was that the file wasn't supposed to be used for the MCU and that there was supposed to be a different file. I have yet to find any MCU files for westinghouse products. So I sucked it up and called for support.



First call to service got me voicemail. Second call I got a person that transferred me into phonemail. Three emails got no response but to submit the emails to the same address I submitted them to in the first place. About a week later I got a phone call, mentioned that it was out of waranty, so they gave me the number of the service center. Phone mail again. Two days later I get a phone call, and they want me to send the set in, I asked about the main board and whether there was a jumper setting to reset the MCU, which I guess is similar to a pc's bios. Guess what, they have no idea. I said I didnt want to ship the set and that ended the call. They called again a week later and said they wanted to follow up, that call ended with the comment that we will get an estimate together and call back. That was two weeks ago. Well I don't expect that they will call back, the service is run by a third party group that does visio and westinghouse tv repairs. Oh and by the way, a westinghouse service rep informed me to check their site in a couple of months, the information there might be right at that time, but there is no expected date of completion for the website repairs. Part of the issue is that the entire database of serial numbers has to be keyed back in manually, which could mean that you can't be certain your SN will be recognized, and if it is, what they might have paired it up with.


All in all, I had a more pleasant experience having a catheter removed after it was left in for two weeks longer than it was supposed to, and not having any pain killers.


So if you are thinking of updating firmware I highly suggest that you don't do it, at least not with anything on westinghouse's website. Secondly if you are looking to purchase a tv, don't buy westinghouse. Spend an extra hundred and get something worth the money. I have a 35 inch Mitsubishi Tube I bought back in 1993, the color, the clarity is as good as the Westinghouse I bought less than 2 years ago, and is still working as it did when I bought it. The westinghouse has been replaced, repaired, and now a doorstop in the 2 years I bought it. It turned itself on and off, trouble with ports, 15-30 second handshaking switching from normal digital to HDTV channels using an HDMI cable, yet has no issues with doing it over RCA cables. And service is horrid if you can even call it service. I usually try to find something nice to say about a company, and all I can think of it was a good brand back in the 70's, but even my mother says she'll never get a westinghouse product again after this fiasco (I had bought 2 thinking it was a good deal, one set was junk out of the box and I ended up spending another hundred dollars replacing it at bestbuy because they didnt have the same exact one in stock, turns out I had the 50602's, and they exchanged the bad one with a 50601, but had to charge me extra because it wasnt the same model? I no longer do business with them because I feel they should have honored the sale since I brought it back in the next day).


Be wary of doing any firmware updates, because if it bricks, it can nullify your warranty from what I've been told, even if you use their file and follow their instructions. As for debricking a set, I havent found a way to do this since in order to update the MCU/Cramfs you have to have access to the menu, which cant be accessed once it bricks. Supposedly the LED color has something to do with the state of the set, but they wouldnt tell me what colors mean what.


Just my two cents, hope no one else has to go thru this hell.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
sporati, your story would explain why my TV thinks its a SK42-H240s after the firmware upgrade instead of a SK32-H240s.


When i did my firmware upgrade I ignored the part in their instructions where it said to rename the file and use the same update for both the MCU and the screen, it sounded too weird to me. That really is too bad that their instructions tell you to brick your set if followed exactly.


There may still be hope for unbricking your set though; there is a thread going on about custom firmware for the Westinghouse units. The guys there have been flashing and re-flashing firmware a fair bit and may be able to help undoing any damage that was done:

http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showthread.php?t=1128245


-Nick
 

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Yeah, I've been following his work, sadly there has been no update since his last post saying trident was going to release the GL. Then there will be a wait until he gets around to the 32H240S 50601. His work is impressive and he's definitely smarter than all those I spoke with at WH and their repair service combined. I ended up just buying an 32LG70 to replace the set, but am still looking at using the 240S as a monitor if I can get a self installing firmware. Otherwise I'll just give it to a friend that needs a tv and doesnt mind spending the 200$ to get it fixed. I hope others found my account with Westinghouse enlightening and will avoid their firmware updates for some time to come. Maybe one day Westinghouse will find a way to become a reputable company it once was considered. In the meantime, if you got a set, dont upgrade your firmware, if you don't have one of their sets, I would suggest avoiding them as they are a crapshoot.
 

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OK. So I followed the instructions on Westy's website for upgrading my 32H240S 50601 firmware exactly as directed, and I end up bricking my TV. That was before I discovered this forum. Any way I can reflash the TV back to the prior state?
 

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Nick-


My SK-32H240S has developed the same blue blotches on white areas.


I have noticed it immediately after turning unit on, then suddenly goes away for quite some time, later it comes back (sometimes, not always).


You indicated power supply/overheating problem may be the culprit, since I get the symptoms from power-up, I dont agree its overheating at that moment. However, I do suspect power supply has a component that has gone out of tolerence. Have you changed it since your last posting?


Which board did you suspect? The one exposed in you photos (on the left) is the Inverter board, used to drive the high voltage of the cold cathode backlight tubes. The main power supply would be under the central metal shield.


Thanks, Larry
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Larry,


I have not changed anything since last time (aside from moving the TV to a different room). I tested the set without the fan and have been able to repeat the blue every time, however with the fan the tv seems to be okay.


There are likely several ways that the power supply can fail, perhaps one of your components reaches a proper operational state only after having warmed up, causing the blue on start-up.


The way I understand the layout of the boards, is that the power supply and the inverter board are both on the same board. In my second image, if you look at the bottom right of the exposed board you will see the two black cables coming into the board. These supply the 120VAC to the board and i believe that the little "fenced off" area in the bottom left is the the power supply.


The header at the top right of the board (cable coming out and going into the central metal shield) has several of the pins listed as "+12VDC, +5VDC, ground, and some that seem to control functions such as "power", normally "closed", Blue LED On (BLON?).


This leads me to believe that the conversion from 120VAC to 12VDC and 5VDC is occurring on the inverted board (along with its functions of supplying the backlights).


I believe that the central processor board is very similar to small computer, hosting the linux based operating system, input headers, image processing, and other features.


Hopefully this helps. One of these days I would like to stick a volt meter on the mainboard power supply header to determine the voltage with and without the blue.


-Nick
 

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Nick-


OK my curiosity got to me today and I decided to explore behind the back cover.


I was under the impression there was another "power supply" based on some suppliers of replacement (scavanged) parts for Westinghouse SK-32H240S. Some of these parts suppliers had associated a metal caged power supply with this model. After opening the unit, I removed many screws to expose the raised center area seen in your photos. Only the Main circuit board is to be found under this cage, no power supply as I would have hoped. In reading many other models of LCD TVs, most all had this power supply separate from the Inverter board... not cheap-O Westinghouse! You are correct, the two black wires plugged into the lower left connector come directly from the AC cord jack. The Inverter/Power Supply board 'looked' good, no scorched components. I did not bother with taking any voltage measurements.


However, there was another reason to open that center section. I wanted to see where the LCD panel is connected to the LCD Controller board. As I suspected, its found under this metal cage at the top of the set, and under another RF cage. (BTW- the Main board is buried deep inside the cage. It would be a b*tch to replace.)


The reason I wanted to find the LCD Contoller board was because in my researching this problem, I saw several mentions about the ribbon connectors between the LCD panel and the LCD Controller board developing poor connections, possibly corrosion causing various lasting and/or intermittant display problems. Also possible culprit can be the LCD Controller itself.


Soooo I carefully removed the sheild off the board and disconnected the two ribbon cables at the board and the LCD side, wiped them clean with 91% Isopropol alchohol and a lint free cloth and reattached each ribbon. {See Photos [from the top looking down]} I also cleaned the LCD Controller input cable connector. Put on some of the internal covers, powered up and VIOLA! NO MORE WHITE AREAS TURNING BLUE.



So far I am extremly pleased with the results and so is my wife & daughter as this was our 'main TV' in the den. Hopefully this will solve it forever or quite sometime.

PS- It took me a while to figure out the ribbon cable connector was not your typical plug and receptacle type, rather its a Compression connector which holds the ribbon tight to the contacts within the connector. To open this connector slip either a finger nail or X-acto blade between the Blue Tape of the ribbon cable and the White connector. Lift Up the edge of the White connector and it will hinge away from the ribbon. Then the ribbon will slide out from the connector. To replace, simply square up the ribbon as you insert it fully into the connector body and swing the white piece back down until it snaps on each end. Although the ribbons look idendical, I paid attention to avoid reversing the insertion or swapping the ribbon cables.

 

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Discussion Starter #14
LarryK420,


Nice work! I will open up my TV again this weekend and see if I can work the same magic! (fingers crossed).


I can see how heat could potentially be causing my issue as well, if the expansion of the metal connectors is causing them lose proper connection. Hopefully that is the case!


Ill take a look at the mainboards too and try and post some pics for other people browsing the thread (may also help sort out the differences between the TW601 and TW602 models of this TV).




-Nick
 

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Hey guys, my friend gave me his TV acouple days ago cause he had color problems with it after awhile. But its fine when I just threw a fan on it.


Now this part, I wish I hadn't done. Today, I just got the purple light instead of the usual orange light when its shut off. Now it won't turn on. This was due to the fact that I did a firmware upgrade and attempted to the MCU update, but I shut it off during the update after it won't do anything only saying "Transmitting...." for the past hour, so I just shut it off.


But after watching TV for a good hour or so, went upstairs REAL quick, came back down, it was shut off. Then noticed this pink/purple standby light instead of the usual orange light. Is there any way I can ever get it to turn back on or I'm gonna have to use it as a coffee table?..


Any help would be appreciated...


The TV was fine, I mean it froze and I had to power cycle it acouple of times, using a fan and all.....until I did the update, it stayed shut.
 

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Discussion Starter #16
There were a pile of problems with the firmware updates available on the westinghouse site.


Firstly, the instructions show you how to update the set firmware, and the MCU firmware. The problem is that the download only comes with 1 file.


To make the whole process even more confusing the Westinghouse instructions actually tell you to rename the files so that the TV recognizes them.


I have updated the firmware on mine, however i was wary of renaming the file to get the MCU to accept it so I did not. As it turns out, following their instructions and renaming the files seems to the brick the TV's by causing the MCU to load firmware that was only intended TV.


My recommendation to anyone who reads this: do not upgrade your firmware. Even the firmware I installed was wrong, the TV now thinks its a 42" model.


The Westinghouse site has the firmware all mixed up and the vague instructions tell cause you to brick the set.


I am opening up my TV this weekend, I will see if there is a serial port or a jumper to reset the mainboard after failed firmware upgrade.


-Nick
 

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I own a refurbished Westinghouse LTV-32W3 purchased from E-cost. After about 6 months i encountered the same picture problem after the TV warmed up (about 20-30 mins) except it was green blobs where the white was and red speckles and outlines around the black areas of the screen. I finally found an old post on Justanswer where the tech said to detach the "lvds" or main video cable from the back of the backlight housing where it is taped on and also to remove any glue from where it connects to the lcd controller board on the backlight housing. I had no glue but i did remove a piece of foil heat shielding tape from the connector. Believe it or not this worked so i am led to believe that electromagnetic interference was interfering with the video signal. Hope this helps you out.
 

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Steveofcourse


I seriously doubt the removing the foil tape had any EMI benefit as the manufacturer's placement of the foil is to sheild EMI/RFI either radiating To or From the object it surrounds. By removing the foil you may have introduced a new problem where EMI/RFI will cause spurious artifacts to the video or sound.


I would maintain the action of disconnecting the cable connector essentially cleaned the connection by the wiping motion of unplugging and plugging back in and therefore solved your video problem.


Larry
 

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Don't have the 32", but my VK-42F240S has stopped recognizing any of the HDMI inputs. It also scales a 1920X1080 input over VGA differently every time I turn it on with no rhyme or reason, sometimes filling the screen and sometimes with black bars. I'll never buy another Westy LCD and will probably just give the one to my son to use with the component inputs...


John
 

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It took me a while, but i found this thread in a google search and tried LarryK420's fix. One hour or so later, I still have a perfect picture (edited this time right before posting). So I think it may have worked for me. Just in case anyone wanted to know if it worked for anyone else. I'll keep using the TV and see if it holds up for at least an hour, and try it a few more times throughout the next couple days and let y'all know whether it holds up.


Also, this wasn't very difficult to do, as I have little to no experience poking around inside a TV. All you need is a standard phillips head screw driver and really small phillips screwdriver, like one from a glasses repair kit (for the last casing around the Controller Board). I was lucky and had a set of small phillips and slot screwdrivers, but I'm pretty sure you can find them pretty easily at a tool shop or even walmart.


I had actually left this problem alone for almost two years, and today it got ridiculously horrible, so it can and will get worse if you do nothing and just try to put up with it (like my fiance).
 
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