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Author Topic: Always get an extended Warranty...  (Read 9492 times)

FLYING SE7EN

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Always get an extended Warranty...
« on: May 23, 2006, 09:46:53 AM »

So I thought I'd finally post about the adventures of HDTV repair.   

In March of 2003 I finally pulled the trigger and purchased a 57" Toshiba widescreen CRT rear projection HDTV. 

I was pretty frakking excited as I had pined for a large widescreen TV for about 5 years at that point.  I was as happy as a clam for the first few days and then, while watching a DVD, the TV went "POP" and the screen went black.  My heart sunk and I think I threw up in my mouth a little.  A few seconds later the TV turned back on by itself and everything went back to normal.  After catching my breath and changing boxer shorts, I made a call to the retailer who sold me the TV and promptly bought an extended warranty for ~ $150.  It turns out that this was one of the best things I ever did because normally I would reject the idea of extended warranties as just unecessary profit for the retailers.  Big mistake.

Fast forward to December of 2005.  I started noticing a few wavy lines at the top 10th of the screen while watching HD broadcasts and I also started noticing a weird scrambling of the image for a second or two when the TV was first powered on.  I gave it a week or so and when the problems didn't go away, I gave the retailer (OneCall.com) a call.  They put me in touch with my extended warranty company, NSI.  After reporting my problem to NSI on January 6, 2006, they told me a technician from a local Toshiba authorized service center would be in touch to schedule a visit to diagnose/fix the problem.

On January 27th, the guy shows up and takes a look at my set.  By now the problems are getting worse, the wavy lines are now on the top 1/8th of the screen and the scrambled image on powering the TV lasts for about a minute.  After spending about a half hour looking at the guts of the TV and tweaking a few things the repair guy says that he doesn't know for sure whats wrong, but he does know that if he were to replace 3 of the set's main hyperboards (  ???  ) it would do the trick.  I said great, order them up!

They ordered the parts on February 2nd.  As of this writing, the parts are on back order with no ETA.   

I started harassing the warranty company about a month after the parts were ordered and kept getting stonewalled.  They said that as long as the parts were still being manufactured, I'd have to wait.  I don't like to wait, do you? 

By the beginning of March, I'd had it, so I turned up the pressure by calling the warranty company every day and getting more and more angry at the poor bastards in customer service.  I guess I'd finally raised enough hell that a supervisor in claims gave me a call and I told the whole tale making sure to include a lot of "this is unacceptable's" and "this is not what I paid fors" and so on.  He assured me that my case would be discussed at the next meeting and a decision would be made whether to replace the TV or to make me wait.

He called me the next morning and told me they would replace the tv.  ;D 8)

They ended up giving me a credit at OneCall.com for what I paid for the Toshiba and I put it toward a new Sony 60" 3LCD set and I'm as happy as I could be.




The best part about the story is that I was told I'd be responsible for disposing of my malfunctioning Toshiba.   Now it's important to understand that the Toshiba still works, it just needs about 5-7 minutes to warm up and then the standard definition picture is fine.  Who knows how long it will remain usable, but until it totally stops working, I've decided to dispose of it upstairs in the bonus room/kid's play room!



So hopefully we've all learned to always, always, always buy the extended warranty.


P.S. - There's nothing in the TV stand in the pictures because I just got it yesterday.  I'm sure my wife will have it stuffed with knick nacks very soon.

P.S.S. - Here's a link to a before and after shot of the TV's.... http://web.infoave.net/~drashforth/HTbeforeafter2.jpg
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Geese

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Re: Always get an extended Warranty...
« Reply #1 on: May 23, 2006, 10:09:37 AM »

Um...so when's the next videogame party at your place?   :D

BTW - I see that the native resolution is 1366 x 768. Do you have any issues running in 720p? Is text crystal clear?
Are there any irregularities with the picture since the 360 would be displaying a non-native mode of the LCD? Just totally curious!
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ICandee

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Re: Always get an extended Warranty...
« Reply #2 on: May 23, 2006, 11:02:23 AM »

Holy mother...When do you guys need a babysitter again?  That turned out looking great Boss!  The stand matches perfectly!
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sean80

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Re: Always get an extended Warranty...
« Reply #3 on: May 23, 2006, 11:30:54 AM »

I always get the extended warranty now especially after going through three headsets and one controller on the 360.  The $50.00 warranty more than paid itself off. 

Nice tv btw....I'm mucho jealous.  :)
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FLYING SE7EN

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Re: Always get an extended Warranty...
« Reply #4 on: May 23, 2006, 12:43:43 PM »

Mark,

No issues whatsoever with the 720p, at least that I can see.  Text is razor sharp and 360 images and HD is stunning!  I can honestly say that the difference in picture quality on the 360 between this set and the old one is as striking to me as the difference between xbox 1 and the 360 on the old set!
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FLYING SE7EN

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Re: Always get an extended Warranty...
« Reply #5 on: May 23, 2006, 04:16:04 PM »

Just another note on the resolution subject:

Unfortunately, until they come up with a standard for HD, any set that you buy these days is going to have to scale at least some content to match your display's native resolution. 

I was given a credit at OneCall.com so I had to choose a replacement from their stock.  One thing I knew for sure was that I was not going to go down in screen size, so that left out a bunch of sets.  I wanted to find something that would do 720p natively, unfortunately, none of the current Sony LCD sets over 50" have 1280 X 720 native resolutions, so if I wanted to stick with a set that could meet that spec, I'd have had to go with a 61" Samsung DLP.

Not only did I not want to spend that much extra $$ (it was supposed to be a replacement after all), but after spending a good bit of time looking at the DLP sets at Tweeter, I just didn't like the way they looked when compared to the LCD's. 

For some reason, I see a lot of digital noise on DLP sets regardless of manufacturer and screen size.

That pretty much left me with one option:  The 60" A20 from Sony.  I spent a lot of time looking at the set, reading the 16 page thread about it over at the AVS forums and checking it out in person at local retailers.  To my eyes the scaling that needs to be done to get a 1280 X 720 image to fit the 1366 X 768 resolution of my set produces no noticable artifacts or irregularities, and in fact looks spectacular (have I mentioned that yet?).

My advice for anyone going down this road in the future is to try to figure out what resolutions you use the most (480i SD, 480p, 720p or 1080i) and find a set that can natively display your most popular resolution.  If you can't do that, make sure that your set has a good scaler/line doubler (AVS is a great resource for this type of info).  Finally, go out and see the set with your own eyes, particularly in a high end store as they will more than likely have better lighting than your Best Buys and Circuit City's.



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Geese

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Re: Always get an extended Warranty...
« Reply #6 on: May 23, 2006, 04:40:32 PM »

To my eyes the scaling that needs to be done to get a 1280 X 720 image to fit the 1366 X 768 resolution of my set produces no noticable artifacts or irregularities, and in fact looks spectacular (have I mentioned that yet?).

Excellent! That's what I was wondering about. Glad to hear the 720p isnt compromised. I know my wife's 27" LCD 1280x720 native looks great in 720p, but has quite noticible irregularities when displaying 480i/p. Have you tried vanilla Xbox games on it yet? How does 480i/p look?
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FLYING SE7EN

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Re: Always get an extended Warranty...
« Reply #7 on: May 23, 2006, 07:04:19 PM »

480p for regular xbox looks better than it ever did on the old set.  UC2 last night was fantastic.  I've also tried Halo2, Psychonauts and SW:Battlefront 2 and they've all never looked better!!
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adamsappel

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Re: Always get an extended Warranty...
« Reply #8 on: May 24, 2006, 12:48:41 AM »

Before, my hatred of you was amorphous, and without reason. Now that it has basis, it has the heat of a thousand suns.
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Failsafe

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Re: Always get an extended Warranty...
« Reply #9 on: May 24, 2006, 10:24:16 AM »

Did you get a new TV or something, Jeff?
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FLYING SE7EN

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Re: Always get an extended Warranty...
« Reply #10 on: May 27, 2006, 01:11:09 AM »

Here's a couple of screenshots I took tonight.  I used my digital camera with my finger covering the flash, so they don't exactly do the TV justice but it's the best I could do.

I also updated my first post with a picture of the Tosh in the playroom.

J.


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ICandee

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Re: Always get an extended Warranty...
« Reply #11 on: May 27, 2006, 01:47:12 PM »

Wow, that is a beautiful picture.
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FLYING SE7EN

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Re: Always get an extended Warranty...
« Reply #12 on: July 16, 2007, 10:38:32 AM »

Not again!

My TV has been malfunctioning again.  Now, at random intervals, the picture just goes away and when I hit the power button, I'm greeted with 5 blinking red lights.   I've called the extended warranty company and they've got a tech coming out in the next WEEK or so.   Over at the AVS forum, there seems to be a guy who had this problem and it turned out to be a lamp driver on the board, or something of that nature.  I'm crossing my fingers it doesn't completely die on me over the next week or two (the problem is intermittent).

I'll update the thread as I get more information.....


J.
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Bryan

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Re: Always get an extended Warranty...
« Reply #13 on: July 16, 2007, 10:42:06 AM »

Sorry to hear that Jeff.  Please let us know if it is fixed before the wedding - I don't want to bother coming over if your TV is broken.
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mathewh

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Re: Always get an extended Warranty...
« Reply #14 on: July 16, 2007, 11:02:01 AM »

mandingo: that is hella-terrible. i hope the kinks get worked out tout-suite for yoos. for now i think we'll just stick with a) our diet pepsi, and b) our 32" tubey teevee box.
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