Top critical review
21 people found this helpful
Recorded video cannot be ported to other devices and very poor PVR
on 30 September 2012
I've had this TV for over 2 years and decided the picture from the internal freeview tuner is decidedly wishy/washy (especially with SD pictures). So I now use a freesat box and get a much better (sharper with better colours) picture.
Stupid TV doesn't always remember that I've set it to external input once waking up after being on standby. Really annoying as I nearly always watch from my satellite box. Doubly annoying as sometimes it takes a minute for the TV to switch to a different input after switching on.
I have tried to connect up a USB hard drive, but found this TV does not recognize it. I contacted Sony who have suggested that USB hard drives which have their own power supply are not supported. So you must buy a USB drive which is powered only from the USB cable. Also it should be noted that the TV formats your hard drive in such a way that it cannot be read by Windows. Also the video files appear protected/encrypted and non transportable. I was able to see the hard drive under linux, but the video files appear to be in a non standard format that is not supported by any video player that I know of. So if you wanted to record from the TV and then watch the video on your laptop or port your videos to another drive then this is not possible. Because of this ridiculous level of copy protection and no time-shift facility the TV loses two stars!
The fast forward function when skipping through recorded films/programmes is really very poor. Only one or 2 frames are shown for something like 30 seconds of video. This makes it very hard to skip adverts or to quickly locate a point in the film. Also you can't delete or cancel recordings whilst a recording is in progress. I'm really very disappointed about the PVR on this TV. Would have expected something better considering the amount paid for the TV.
Most of the time the TV is non-responsive during the first 30-60 seconds after switching on the TV. I've checked the batteries on the remote and they are fine. I see the TV LED flash which acknowledges the remote, but the TV refuses to change channels very soon after switching on. This is very annoying and I need to check another TV in order to determine if this is a real fault or not on my TV.
I tried the DLNA. I installed homestream application onto my high performance laptop from the sony website. Then I was able to tell homestream to share a folder on my laptop with the TV.
Then on the TV I was able to see this folder from the media->photos/photos/music->homestreeam->folders menu. One negative was that the stream rate wasn't high enough to play high definition 1080i videos. The video was stop-start and I'm not sure if this was a bandwidth problem or a problem with the wireless connection. I found the starting up of the homestream software is unreliable within Windows 7 (64 bit). I was unable to get the software running the second time after I had run it once. I reinstalled the software and had the same problem. First time the software works fine. The next time I use it the software was unable to communicate with the TV (or vice versa).
The TV easily copes with fast moving action. I watched 'Quantom of Solace' the other day in HD and this TV had no problems with the fast action scenes.
The audio quality is more than acceptable and is just as good as my old TV (LG5700). I have no idea why other reviewers say it is poor because it certainly is NOT poor. If they want a sound bar then they should go and get one.
I used to watch all my TV through the PS3 playtv and I can say the SD pictures are almost as good. So clearly there is some good up-scaling hardware in this TV. The SD is almost as good as HD in some broadcasts. Sometimes I put the TV on BBC1 and the quality is almost as good as BBC1-HD.
I tried a 3D movie and it works very well. I thought initially there was a problem with the TV's 3D,but I found that I had to go through the video setup on the PS3. Then everything was fine. I have seen objects floating/offset in front of the TV by typically up to 30cm, but with special effects this occasionally has been as much as 1 metre. I have so far seen no ghosting or crosstalk problems. The main thing about 3D is the extra depth you get in the pictures. The 3D quality is very good. A big advantage of active 3d over passive 3d is that you can watch it from anywhere in the room. You don't need to be dead centre when watching the TV. Also you are getting maximum HD resolution in both eyes. Whereas for passive TV's you are only getting half the HD resolution in each eye. The 3D glasses I purchased (Sony 250) are not comfortable to wear over glasses.
The power consumption of this 'A' rated TV is incredibly low. I am seeing it only consume 50 Watts on my energy meter when on a HD freeview channel.
The EPG is very good. It is easy to skip to the next days listings. There's also a nice feature of typing in the channel number whilst in the EPG to jump quickly to that channels programme information. Also the scrolling of the EPG is quite fast. I saw a leading Philips TV and was astonished just how slow the EPG scrolling was and this was one of the reasons I chose this TV.
From the EPG you can select programmes to record and you can also do 'series record' (press info button when on a program) and this works very well. The only negative is that the TV automatically selects non-HD version of programmes when doing series record. I can't see a way around this problem.
The default beep heard with every keypress of the remote was annoying. I found this could be switched off on the settings->sounds (keypad tone) menu.
I was unable to find ITV or 40D catchup TV services on this TV. Various internet websites claim no Sony TV's have these particular services.
I have found BBC iplayer though.
One final niggle was the complete lack of handling slots (or grip points) on this TV. The back of the TV is smooth with few places where you can get a grip on it when installing the TV onto its stand or moving it. It might be a real issue if you live on your own because you probably need 2 people to safely mount this TV on its stand.