"Impressive HDTV for the price."4.0 starson by Gadsi
Pros: Impressive Night/Normal/Dynamic Viewing modes.
Cons: Slow remote control/options interface.
Slight image countoring and double/reflective imaging.
Summary: For its price ($1300.00 tax include) This TV performs very well and beyond expectation, visually wise. I have another HDTV, a Toshiba Regza 720p 32' LCD. And while the Toshiba received raving reviews (bought at $499 at on boxing day), the Hitachi produces a cleaner and sharper image (including SD programing, compressed movies files, etc...)
It has an optical digital output, which is a good thing if you connect it directly to a receiver and run most of your electronics (consols, DVD players and such) through the TV. However, while the receiver (Z-5500) receives the signal, I have yet was able to select the Digital output option on the Audio settings. I keep getting the 'this option cannot be selected, which is a little bit of a let-down, but not the biggest deal, it was a freebiee bonus anyways.
The TV's internal speakers are not very impressive, in fact, they actually distort at loud volumes with 3/4 bass up. You definitely need a Surround or external receiver and speakers to get the kick out of this TV. Again, I cannot praise the image quality enough. There is some evident flicker action going on, but once you play the movie, or play the game, it's literally un-noticable, and I have sensitive eyes. If this was a CRT, I'd be popping the advil to get rid of the head-ache.
A big minus is no VGA input... In this day and age, no PC input... Come one, that one is a must in my opinion. I'm aware of the options to connect it, but not everyone wants to go and start buying HDMI/DVI cables and buying PC graphics upgrades or VGA to HDMI converter boxes, for that amount alone you can afford a better TV that has VGA and full 1080p. So yes, that aspect is slightly dissapointing.
Luckily for me, my PC supportd DVI/5.1 Digital/Coaxial and the works, so I was able to connect via DVI/HDMI (and paid for the cable.) I've only tested it with a lower resolution since my drivers don't support 1280/1080 (odd numbers by the way), but the deafult screen looks good even at 1234/780, though it cannot read the 16:9 flag well and squishes the image.
Now, for the goods, as someone else here mentioned, this baby is brilliant with the VideoGame world. I don't even own the X360, but I have the modded original XBOX, and have the Xbox Media Center running. And man oh man, it supports 720p/1080i and with this TV, the difference somehow is clear (although you have to sit closer to see it.) From testing Ninja Gaiden Black to Halo, to Black, to GTA San-Andreas... I am speechless, that TV definitely outshines the Regza by a mile, hands down.
And for C-net reviews, I have to agree with the consumers here, sorry C-net you guys underestimated this TV, or perhaps had too much expectation from it. This is an entry level HDTV, and not only an Entry Level, it's a brand-name entry level at a price of a no-name entry levels at its size. Please compare products with proper respective ratio. There is no doubt that this TV won't match the new LG's or the Full 1080p Samsungs slimline. But you know what, I've compared it 1:1 with the Sony 720p Bravis, and it outshined it while the Sony cost about $150-$200 more. Yes the TV has some issues, namely the slow interface or the cluncky stand. Then again, mount in on the wall, connect an HD device and fair surround system and its up the with the big-boys easily.
Turst me, if it outperformed the Regza, this TV can't be this bad.