on April 6, 2005
I bought this through Amazon about a month ago. Shipping was very fast and as stated in another reveiw, the truckers brought the tv in, removed it from its packaging, and took the trash with them, it was great. Setup was easy. High definition is absolutely crystal clear, I've never seen a picture like this from a television before. Standard broadcast doesn't come close to the hi-def, but is above par with other tv's. I hooked this tv up with the toshiba sd-5970 dvd with HDMI and could not be more impressed with it. In closing, great tv, great price through amazon, and a great experience getting it.
on May 16, 2005
Since I wrote my initial review, let's just say that I've had more than my share of problems with this TV. It all started when the local cable company tried to install their cable card into this TV. After many weeks of Adelphia saying it was the TV and Toshiba customer service saying it was the cable card, we finally figured out that there was a faulty computer system in my TV (the cable card slot, the picture viewer would not work). Luckily this all happened during the warrantee period because the part that ended up getting replaced was a $1400 part, plus installation. It took months for the new part to finally get sent and installed. Then, everything worked. For a few weeks. Then slowly but surely sometimes when trying to tune into an HD channel, I would lose signal from the cable card and this problem would cause the whole cable to go out. Everytime this happens, it takes a good ten to fifteen minutes to reset and get all of your channels back. But worse than that, the problem has gotten worse and worse and now can happen several times in the same day. This can be very frustrating when you're trying to watch something particular or you have guests over to watch a big game or something. I am waiting to hear back from Toshiba about this issue, but I only have a few days left of my warrantee. I have to hope that nothing else goes wrong. So far, they have been very slow but have taken care of all of my problems and have been nice about it.
To top all of the problems off, a few weeks ago the lamp blew out. Fortunately it, too, is covered under the warrantee. The lamp is "supposed" to last 3 years. It actually lasted about 9 months of very light viewing. This lamp is a $400 part. If you're adding, that's $1800 they've had to send me for free, not to mention a lot of time without a working and a lot of hassle. I'm trepidatious about my warrantee runnning out on me and these very expensive problems continuing.
All that being said, when the TV is in full working order, I still think it has one of the best pictures around for the price. Of course, it is not worth the aggravation with all of the problems that I've had, but perhaps it's just that I got a problem child from Toshiba. I would not have bought this television from Amazon.com or any other on-line retailer because of the shipping problems. I would probably have gone with a retailer that could offer the extended warrantee, especially if that covered the lamp. I just think that if you spend over $2000 on a television that you shouldn't have to sink any more money into it for at least a couple years.****
I bought this TV about two months ago. I did a lot of research (...) to narrow down the best quality-to-cost-efficiency ratio. While at the time this set was still a couple hundred more than I wanted to spend, I notified Amazon of some lower prices I'd found around the Internet and within hours they had matched it (they match the total price because many other sites charged higher shipping and, of course, sales tax, which Amazon does not). I decided to take the plunge, having had three Toshiba TVs in the past and never being disappointed (one of them was a 40" CRT HD-Ready projection that was impressive at the time). The amount of features on this unit were staggering; the most enticing for me were the HDMI connections, the Cable Card slot, and the latest, more sophisticated DLP engine. I also ordered the stand from Amazon (through Crutchfield -- had problems with them shipping the stand expeditiously. I ordered the stand a day after I ordered the TV and the TV arrived over a week earlier and came from further away).
I had some problems with the shipping company. They delayed my shipment several days after the TV arrived in my area to wait for the TV stand I ordered (they were delivering both items). When it finally showed up at my house, there was a huge hole in the side of the box and only one small delivery driver. The driver hauled the TV inside my house, had me inspect that the hole hadn't done any damage, and had me sign some paperwork -- then he was off on his merry way. These televisions are so big that there's quite a lot of box and packaging, which became a nightmare when I had to break it down and send it out on several day's recycling pick-ups the next few days because there was so much (the delivery company, Eagle Global, was supposed to unbox my new TV and haul away the trash, which would have been much easier). I consider myself lucky, though, that the TV works fine because one drawback of ordering from Amazon is that once you sign the paperwork they wash their hands of your purchase unless you've bought into their very expensive warrantee. I dreaded having to schedule service through Toshiba if something had gone awry.
But the unit was easy to set up, easy to install on the stand (a somewhat cheap and flimsy but nice-looking stand). I had it up and running in no time and didn't have much trouble comprehending the manual.
Right now I have DirecTV (blame my girlfriend for that one), and it is a financial investment to get HD service through them (plus you can't use the Cable Card). The contract is almost up, so Adelphia seems like the best way to go there. I did go out and by a Terk HD antenna for my local stations and the picture is amazing (though the rabbit ears over my sleek TV are unseemly). The current DirecTV digital programming looks very poor on this TV. It seems to me that this TV is begging for an HD source. In fact, at first I was very disappointed in the picture even on DVDs played on my progressive scan Panasonic DVD-S47. I didn't see any of the rainbow effect that they warn about, but artifacts are all over the place - especially distracting in dark or busy action sequences. This problem accounts for my subtracting one star from the review -- but from what I have read and understand, a new DVD player with progressive scan upconversion should not only make the picture close to true HD-quality, but also should make those artifacts disappear. If that's the case, then I have nothing but praise for this TV. It's slim, it's light, it's got a beautiful screen, a ton of features (ready for the technology of the next few years at least), and Toshiba has once again proven to be the best bang for my buck.
The is the first review I've ever written about anything I've ever purchased. I thought maybe some people would like to know what to expect when they are ready to invest thousands into entertainment. I based my decision on many factors, and one important one was customer reviews. This set couldn't be much better for what I paid. I think now that it's a matter of setting up other components and inputs for this set to really shine. If the Toshiba SD-5970 DVD player I'm getting today clears up the little glitches in DVD play that I think it will, I wouldn't hesitate giving this television a well thought out 5 stars.
Addendum 7/12/05 -- I purchased a Toshiba upconversion DVD player (everything about the player, other than the HDMI picture and sound, are horrid and designed by chimps somewhere), and the difference in the picture is very noticeable. The ghosting that had bothered me so much on DVDs is now virtually gone and the HDMI connection creates a sharp, crisp picture (although no aspect ratio control whatsoever). An easy upgrade to 5 stars, especially at the price I paid for it and $100 Amazon gift card I received. Getting HD cable this week because this TV is an absolute joy to watch.
on August 11, 2005
This is a follow up to my review of 7/05. I stated in my review that I had some issues with the verticle bars and loss of video at various times since I purchased my set in 5/05. I have been contacted by TOSHIBA recently, and a "file" has been created for my complaints. I have no idea if anything else will be done to settle my claim for a new replacement or not. I gave them details of my problems and asked them to let me know their decision. I will insist on the identical model, as I love the hd performance and I am willing to give them another chance to make it right by me. As of today, two weeks after their phone interview, I have not gotten any response on my claim. I would still reccomend this television almost without hesitation (pendind a fix by TOSHIBA). For the money, the digital picture is very good to outstanding and the hd performance will knock your socks off!!!!.............still waiting............
on October 3, 2005
Inspect screen Before signing and accepting delivery of any Toshiba DLP, be sure to check the screen to make sure that the coating on the inside of the screen is uniform. On mine, there was a circle about 10" in diameter that you can see in certain lighting and even when the TV is off! It will appear lighter than the surrounding areas at times and can be annoying. I called Toshiba and had a service man come out and even though he acknowledged that this is common, Toshiba will not replace the screen. I would have given them a negative 10 if it were possible just because of their attitude. So, look at the screen VERY carefully before accepting or purchasing. If you see this problem, refuse to accept it. Or else just buy a Samsung or Mitsubishi DLP to avoid the problem I have.
carefully before accepting delivery