April 09, 2009 by Simon Scotland
Q. I have an older model Toshiba Rear Projection 50H81. I love this TV but there are TV station logos burned in to the screen. Also about 1/3 of the screen on the left side has a brown tint on it causing light colored (like snow) scenes to look bad. Would I be better off upgrading to a LCD HDTV or repairing the screen on this set? And where would I get the material to repair it? - Mike
A. Unfortunately the logo burn-in is not something that can be easily repaired and certainly not a job you could do yourself. The images have been burnt into the CRTs which lie at the heart of the screen.
I would say that replacement is the way to go. Also video specifications have changed since that set was made and while it can accept 1080i images it wouldn’t handle 1080p and it doesn’t have HDMI inputs. These are specifications you will need in a TV to get the most out of Blu-ray and other high definition sources.
As to the choice of the replacement I would think carefully before you make a decision. Although rear projection TVs are not popular in the UK, I do have quite a soft spot for them. There is something undeniably cinematic about them as, after all, they are projecting the image. Flat screen technologies have their advantages such as size, weight, energy consumption and viewing angle. But if you are in love with the concept and image feel of rear projection, there is no reason to discount this technology. While fewer sets are being made, there are plenty available from the likes of Sony, Samsung and JVC. DLP and LED technology have made some significant advances in picture quality - and no logo burn in!
If you decide to go the flat screen route I would highly recommend viewing some choices from a good retailer where they have been set up properly. If you tend to watch TV in a darkened room, try to see the sets in this type of environment. All but the latest LED backlit LCD screens have a permanent backlight which produces a grey cast behind the blacks. Plasmas tend to be better on this and the Pioneer Kuro (while stocks last) is the best consumer screen available.
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Simon spent eight years in the feature film production. Upon leaving the industry he formed Beyond the Invisible in London UK which specializes in high end whole house entertainment systems, home theaters and lighting control and currently has a staff on ten. He is a certified CEDIA designer and avid collector of Citroen automobiles.
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