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Samsung SP-46L5HX LCD RPTV

Discussion in 'Televisions' started by mucwhore, Feb 11, 2004.

  1. mucwhore

    mucwhore
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    Since one week I have a Samsung SP46L5HX. Wanted to post my first impressions and a question.

    First the question: I cannot enter the service menu. The combination MUTE-1-8-2-POWER while in stand-by does not work for me. As soon as I press the '1', the TV switches on, and even though I press the remaining keys, it only comes up with the normal TV picture. Any ideas?

    Now my impressions about the TV:
    1. You can and will notice the fan (or mine is damaged) in your silent living room. Even 4 meter away.
    2. The reaction to the remote is slow. Channel switching is slow. Time from Power-On to picture is fast (<10s) (manual says 25s).
    3. Analog cable TV tuner seems to be quite good. Sure, there is picture noise, but not as bad as seen on other TVs this size (compared at the dealer).
    4. DVD picture is sharp and colours are nice (via RGB, DVI not tested yet). Black level is not the best compared to my old CRT, but gray tone separation is good (on the dark _and_ on the bright side). Occasionally I can see pixel noise on certain dark grays. Internal de-interlacer works quite good (verified with Test-DVD).

    Overall it is a fine and stylish set if you can live with the LCD-typical grayish black-level and the fan noise.

    -Dirk
     
  2. bongpig

    bongpig
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    mucwhore, do you play games at all?
     
  3. mucwhore

    mucwhore
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    I have an XBox connected to the Samsung, if that's what you meant.
     
  4. bongpig

    bongpig
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    No,No ... im talking about tiddlywinks! ;0)

    ... but seriously, how does the Xbox look?

    It was good to read your comments above. The not so black black I can live with so long as there is still detail in the darker scenes.
    From the sounds of your post the set handles dark gradients well, even though the bottom of the range isnt so black.

    Im interested in the 43L2 myself. I think it shares tech with your version.
     
  5. mucwhore

    mucwhore
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    XBox:
    Although I was a bit (read: VERY) disappointed when I discovered that the european XBox doesn't support progressive playback, I have to admit that it looks pretty impressive on the Samsung screen even if just dealing with interleaved PAL. But even though I'm satisfied with the 576i for now, I will investigate further into the mod-scene in order to teach my XBox 720p-output. Theoretically the visual experience should increase noticeably from 576i to 720p: Native display resolution, hence no scaling - and no de-interlacing neccessary. The de-interlacer of the TV is quite good, but I think the fast movements within a game are quite challenging for it (maybe I'm wrong and the interlaced frames delivered by the XBox are generated and recognized as film-mode frames which can be perfectly restored by the de-interlacer, but I found no info on that yet.) After all that nitpicking I have to say that it's a stunning experience to play XBox on this large, bright and colourful display.

    DVD Picture Quality:
    After being unsure whether I bought the best TV for that huge amount of money, I went to the dealer again to find the Samsung SP-46L5HX right between it's two main competitors (at least in germany): the 44" DLP RPTVs from LG and Thomson. They both had better black than the Sammy LCD RPTV but also a very reflective display which was a problem with all the lights in the store. The lower resolution of the DLPs (576 vertical) was visible in the small PIP-picture. Overall the Samsung's picture was the best of the three. After that I was confident that I bought the best TV for the money.

    Today a friend of mine visited me to take a look at my new TV. He owns a Thomson 52W640 CRT RPTV, and he's very comfortable with it. But although he noticed the grayish black after I pointed it out, he said that the picture of the Sammy is sharper and overall better than the Thomson's.
     
  6. bongpig

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    Thanks mucwhore.

    Not all Xbox games support Progressive scan. Certainly no UK titles support it, so you'll have to get hold of some progressive ready US imports.
    Do you already have a microsoft high-def pack?

    Personally, I was quite keen on connecting 2 networked Xbox's and using the split screen feature. Now that could be alot of fun!
     
  7. Maninblack

    Maninblack
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    How are you getting on with this set??
     
  8. bongpig

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    mucwhore.
    Can you set up the tv differently for each input. eg AV, s-video, component.
    It seems my 43L2 keeps the same settings when switching inputs. Am I missing something?
     
  9. mucwhore

    mucwhore
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    bongpig:

    I didn't try different input settings. But as soon as my new DVD player arrives I will also have to configure the inputs. I'll post my experiences then...

    Regarding the XBox, no I don't have the high-def pack. And I thought Microsoft doesn't sell it in Europe. Is progressive PAL possible with it?

    Maninblack:

    The longer I have the TV the more I'm satisfied with it. I'm getting used to the fan noise and start enjoying the fine picture quality. I have a few minor issues for which I plan to call the Samsung service:

    1. DNIe (Samsungs digital picture enhancer) is always in test mode after turing the TV on. Test mode is the mode where you have one side of the screen with DNIe and the other side without.

    2. The TV's time is always lost after switching the set off.

    3. Only when routing the TV-Audio to the AV-Receiver, a loud 'knack' is audible when switching TV channels.

    4. When switching the TV on, the lamp sometimes needs a few start-up tries to lighten up. I can hear the fan starting, but the lamp stays black, after a few seconds the fan stops and some relais are clicking. Then the fan starts again and so on. After a few tries the lamp lights up and everything is ok. Most of the time the lamp starts up on the first try, but nevertheless I wonder why it sometimes has to restart itself multiple times?

    Speaking of service... if anybody knows how to enter the Samsung's service menu, PLEASE post it here. I searched all the web, but every Samsung code I found doesn't work on the SP46L5HX.

    -Dirk
     
  10. bongpig

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    thansk for the info Dirk

    just like you, im liking my set more and more with each day. The black levels are the only problem I have overall, but I can live with it.
    You light warming up doesnt sound very healthy. Ive not had any problems as yet, but ive probably only used the set for around 200 hours so far.

    As for the Xbox. You can get a US hi-def pack, and it will work with PAL machines but not with PScan. However, I still use the hi-def pack to connect my pal xbox as this gives me a better image than scart even without PS. I get tizzing with every other method but using the HiDef pack, which gives me a VERY solid image.

    And the Service menu?
    Ive got a few people looking for a service manual for me. Im not holding my breath though. Ive been searching for the service mode codes for ages but zero luck. Damnit!!!!
    Ive heard there are gamma settings in the service mode that'll help our blacks. Thats what im hoping for myself.
    Please, let me know if you have any luck.
     
  11. PerM

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    mucwhore: According to a Swedish AV forum you are supposed to press the following when the set is in standby:

    INFO -> MENU -> MUTE -> POWER

    I haven't tried this on my set yet but what I can read it should work.
     
  12. bongpig

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    Thanks PerM

    I tried once this evening, but it didnt work. I dont want to turn the tv on and off too many times, so ill try again tommorow.
    Maybe I pressed the buttons too slowly? Who knows.

    Do you have one of these sets PerM?
    Has it worked for you?
     
  13. PerM

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    Bongpig: Yes I have a SP-46 my self. I hadn't tried the service menu before but I just did right now, and it works. There is tons of settings in there. I don't even understand half of it.

    It seams to be divided into different bords or chips.

    In my small experiment I could at least find my software version: 2003-10-11 T_KN2PEUV_1009

    And My lamp time 213H.

    Hope you all get it to work.

    If you have any suggestions on improvements to do, please post them here.
     
  14. bongpig

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    Can you tell me anything regards the method?
    Did you have to press the buttons quite quickly in sequence?
    Ill be trying again tonight. Hopefully I can get it to work, otherwise Ill have to assume that this code doesnt work on the SP-43L2.
    I was hoping it would, as the two tv's share so much, including software,manuals and menu system.

    Was there any kind of gamma setting in there? If so, what kind of difference does that make to the overall black levels?
     
  15. PerM

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    Bongpig: It worked directly when I tried. I had the TV set in Off mode (Standby) and then I pressed the buttons rapidly one after the other. Not extremely quickly though. Maybe 0.5 sec between each key.

    When I press the last button "POWER", the set switches on and when the light comes on the main service menu is displayed.

    There is lots of gamma settings. And every colour also has a setting RGB. This is then repeated for the different inputs (DVI, RGB and such).

    All the people in the Swedish forum also have the SP46 model. Maybe it don't work on the SP43 model, but that would be strange. What does "mucwhore"have for a model? Does it work for him?
     
  16. bongpig

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    muchwhore has the same set as you. He'll be happy to read this I would asume.:)

    Ive just tried it again, and it didnt work. Ah well, the hunt continues!

    I would be interested to hear whether the gamma settings affect the black level in any way.
     
  17. bongpig

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    Also, off the topic of service menus, can I ask any owners a PQ question?

    Basically, with large areas of flat colour, vertical bands show up. these are hard to describe. Its like a ripple running across the screen. It doesnt move, but kind of distorts the image below it.
    Its very subtle, but shows up on large flat areas.

    Anybody else seen this?
    Ive a feeling its more to do with my mains then the tv itself.
     
  18. mucwhore

    mucwhore
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    PerM: Your code works for me - thank you very much! I also have the SP-46 as bongpig already told you. I just entered the service menu and wrote down the current settings. Maybe I'll post them here so that others could see what settings are available and where their values differ from mine.

    bongpig: It's strange that the code doesn't work for your SP-43. Maybe your timing wasn't right? I did it like PerM said - about 0.5 or less seconds between presses - and it just worked the first time I tried.

    And for the vertical bands: I never saw something like that. And I checked the display extensively with a test DVD.

    Best Regards and cheers to PerM for the code!
    Dirk
     
  19. bongpig

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    Dirk,
    Please let me know how your tweeking goes. As I said earlier, im only really interested in how the gamma setting affects the bottom level black. Other than that, im very happy with the picture.

    Keep us posted.
     
  20. mucwhore

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    So far I hadn't the courage to play with the gamma settings...

    But what I found out is that the SP-46 is equipped with a Faroudja DCDi chip (a Genesis FLI2200). I strongly assume that it does the line-doubling/de-interlacing, but then it seems strange to me that the usual 'DCDi by Faroudja' writing is nowhere to be seen on the display chassis... And if in fact the FLI2200 does the de-interlacing, would it make any sense to buy a progressive DVD player? (As they can't de-interlace better than the Faroudja for sure, at best they can use the same chip.)
     
  21. cjking

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    I believe that Samsung have licenced Faroudja technology and I've read that in the USA they sell TVs both with and without the Faroudja name being mentioned, even though both kinds contain similar chips. The ones mentioning Faroudja cost more. I speculate that they may have to pay extra to use the Faroudja brand name over and above what they pay to licence the technology, so they are trying to strike a balance by only using it on their more expensive US sets.

    I think the DVD players will not have a better deinterlacer built in, and I doubt the theoretical advantage of avoiding a digital to component and back translations before reaching the TVs deinterlacer is worth paying for. (If you can find a decent non-progressive DVD player with DVI maybe you can avoid those translations anyway.)
     
  22. mucwhore

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    True - I also think it doesn't matter wether the D/A/D-conversion takes place before or after the de-interlacing. But what about the film-mode flags on the DVD which can/should be evaluated by the de-interlacer? Are they only available within the DVD-Player? Or are they also transmitted to the display, so that the display's de-interlacer can make use of them?
     
  23. cjking

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    I don't know the answer to the question re. flags, however I own an Iscan Pro and I think I read somewhere that they do not believe a decent deinterlacer ought to rely on flags, as these are often missing/wrong. The Iscan detects film mode by examining the actual video fields. I've seen the blue light (indicating film mode detected) come on not just for DVDs but for TV movies and even (I think) some TV adverts, which were presumably shot on film for cinemas and copied to video for TV.
     
  24. Stevey

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    Doesn't the toshiba WH36 range of RPTV beat all of these?
     
  25. bongpig

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    Depends on what you need your tv for Stevey
     

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