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Sony 52XBR4 Update

I thought I’d provide an update on our Sony 52 XBR4 TV after having it now for a couple of months.

First, on the CNBC ticker problem I mentioned: I believe this to be a problem with CNBC and not the TV. Last week, DirecTV added CNBC-HD to their lineup and the ticker now scrolls just fine. In fact, the picture quality is amazing. However, CNBC is still broadcasting their motion video in SD over the HD channel (kind of like cheating). Their video covers a smaller area on the screen so it appears better.

Also, in the last month, DirecTV has added several other HD channels including Sci-Fi, HGTV, Food, USA and others to where their selection now tops both Cable and Dish network. The quality difference between the 1080i output of DirecTV and their usual “SD” format is like night and day. The choices being broadcast in HD are sufficient enough and the SD quality poor enough to where I do not want to watch SD broadcasts and tend to flip over to something (or anything) on HD.

We have watched several DVD’s and the pictures are very nice. I have yet to purchase either the Blu-Ray or HD-DVD player as I am hoping that the market will sort out a winner soon. I did note that Costco is carrying a $250 HD-DVD from Toshiba while the Sony is at $450. This is a significant price differential with the only difference that I can see being that the Toshiba is 1080i while the Sony is 1080p. Can anyone tell the difference?? I am hoping that by Christmas time, the market will provide a better indication. Right now it is wait and see for me.

We have also hooked the Nintendo Wii to the TV and the picture is pretty good but not stunning. I believe that the best the Wii is capable of is 480P and it shows!

Anyway, if you are in the market for the 52XBR from Sony it is a very good TV that I expect will last for many years to come.

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