Top positive review
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Experience Using Toshiba TV In Home Theater System
on November 17, 2010
I ordered this TV from Amazon about three weeks ago, and received it one week later. Although I was concerned about safe shipment of such a large object, it arrived in excellent condition. The packaging, with foam plastic inserts to support the TV at all four corners, was quite impressive.
Set-up was very simple. I only had to look up a few points in the manual. The manual is even written in legible English!
The picture quality on this TV is excellent. I watched a football game on broadcast TV, and that was a completely different experience from watching the same games on my old CRT TV.
I bought this TV for use in my "Home Theater" system that I am still putting together. Playing movies from my HTPC or watching Blu-ray movies really demonstrates the excellent picture quality of this TV. Just as an aside, the remote is easy and fairly intuitive to use. That's not a big point, but a poor remote can frustrate the user of an otherwise excellent TV. This remote works well enough that it doesn't add any irritation to the total experience.
It was when I hooked up the TV to my existing stereo receiver/amplifier that I discovered one point about the TV that is less than perfect. I had not noticed any deficiency in the sound while watching broadcast TV or even watching DVD movies on the TV. But once the stereo receiver/amplifier was hooked up and I could hear the sound over that set with top quality Altec-Lansing speakers, the sound quality was much better. In short, if you want the best home theater experience with this TV, it will need to be supplemented with a good amplifier and speakers. But I expected that going in. I'm not downgrading the TV set just because its audio performance, with its small speakers, isn't quite up to what I get out of my 100 W amplifier and 15" speakers. Heck, each of those speakers cost almost as much as this TV!
This TV set is great for what it does - providing an excellent picture. The fact that it isn't also a professional sound system is irrelevant to its function. Besides, if we have a home theater system, we will have the tuner/amplifier and speakers already for other purposes.
Hooking up the audio output from the TV to a separate amplifier may be a trap for the unprepared. The TV sound out is via TosLink, which is an optical digital signal. I knew that from the Amazon description and pictures of the input/output connections for the TV. I had already ordered a TosLink optical cable and an optical/digital to analog sound converter and two RCA cables to connect to my amplifier. The total cost of those items was about $50. Not a big deal, but just an advance notice to any purchaser of this excellent TV that you really do need the cables and D/A converter, because the sound from your existing home theater or stereo amplifier and speakers will be needed for the complete enjoyment of this TV. If you have a more modern amplifier with optical digital input, only the TosLink cable will be necessary.
All things considered, I don't have any complaints, and I would buy this same TV again. In fact, I'm thinking about buying another one for my bedroom!
Five Stars! No doubt about it!