On The Bias I recall some Philips TVs having a built-in ambient lightsome type of glow from behind the TV.
This was supposed to help with dark-room viewing. Since then, few if any manufacturers have followed suit, but I continue to see occasional articles that say this is a good idea because it helps make viewing less stressful on the eyes.
What Black Dots? I enjoy your segments with Leo Laporte on The Tech Guy radio show and podcast, but I really must disagree with your comments on plasma versus LCD. I agree that plasma blacks are blacker and that colors are more vivid. But I just cannot stand the matrix of black dots on plasma screens. I also dislike the reflective screenthe distraction of reflections more than offsets any loss through a non-reflecting screen.
I recently added Energy CF-50 towers to my system. My other equipment includes Definitive Technology C/L/R 2002 center and SM 350 bookshelf speakers for the surrounds, all powered by a Denon AVR-1912. I'm concerned that I may be underpowering my speakers, because within the first two weeks, the left speaker blew out. Luckily, I was able to exchange the blown speaker, but my question is, should I upgrade to a more-powerful receiver?
Blu-ray Blues My TV is a Panasonic TH-42PZ80U and my Blu-ray player is a Samsung BD-P1500. They are connected with an HDMI cable. I've noticed that some Blu-ray discs aren't as sharp as others and really look just like a DVD. Am I being ripped off? Are some Blu-ray discs simply DVDs labeled as Blu-rays to make more money? I can't see anything wrong with my setup. Has anybody else had the same problem? How do I fix it so I get Blu-ray quality every time I watch a Blu-ray?
I own an 18-wheeler, and I spend around 20 days a month in this truck. It is my home while out on the road. I have upgraded the stereo system with a custom ported subwoofer and a head unit with Bluetooth, which is great with my iPhone. Can you recommend a small LCD or LED TV (24-32 inches) that will provide great picture quality? Do any of these TVs come with Bluetooth so I can play it through the stereo in the truck without having to run wires? If not, is there any aftermarket solution to link the two or any other suggestions you might have?
Calibration Conundrum It has been mentioned in many articles that a professional calibrator can enter adjustments for different lighting conditions and different inputs. But how do you calibrate something other than a DVD or Blu-ray player that can play test discs? How do you generate test data from a cable box, game console, etc.?
No TV! I want to replace the aging rear-projection TV in my home theater, possibly with a Pioneer Elite PRO-111FD. I will be watching mostly Blu-rays with no broadcast viewing at all. Since most Blu-rays have some sort of letterboxing, will there be a problem with image retention or burn-in? If so, what 50-52 inch LCD do you recommend?
I have two plasma TVs, an older Philips 1080i/720p and a newer Panasonic 1080p. I have Verizon FiOS with HD DVR that lets me choose 720p or 1080i output. Which should I choose for the best picture for watching sports? I seem to remember reading somewhere that 720p is best for sports and 1080i is better for movies, but I'm not sure if that still holds true.
Also, I'm considering getting a new 1080p set, and I see you have the Panasonic TC-P50ST30 rated as one of your Top Picks. I can get a good deal on the 60-inch version of this TV and was wondering if your review holds true for that size. I see you review a lot of 50-inch TVs, but not the 60-inch versions. Do the 60-inch versions lose picture quality because the screen is 10 inches bigger with the same number of pixels? Do they just make the pixels bigger?
Cash Grab I have long heard and read that "high-end" HDMI cables are a cash grab and offer minimal if any benefit when compared with bargain brands. Are there real gains in "high-end" HDMI cables? If so, which companies would you suggest looking into?
Job Training In looking for a good part-time job (hopefully working into full time), I ran into a guy who advised that I take a video-calibration technician course. Who is best to teach this? I heard that an ISF course is available through a school in Colorado. I have also heard you and Leo Laporte chat about THX in glowing tones, and I see online they hold courses in Las Vegas and Dallas.
Calibration Challenge I've been listening to you on Leo Laporte's radio show for years. One of your pet subjects is the correct calibration of HDTVs. I would like to challenge you on this. I have previously accepted your advice, but now with multiple media sources running into my TV, I find that one setting doesn't suit all of them. I'm sure that accurate calibration is fine in a perfect world, but because media quality often changes, I have to change the picture settings to suit the media in order to fully appreciate the viewing experience.
Between the Cambridge Audio Azur 840C and Oppo BDP-95, which sound better for music? I know the Oppo can play SACD, but is the difference significant? I have a Sunfire 200Wpc amp and Von Schweikert VR-4 Generation III speakers.