Pros Great value, nice looking bezel
Cons Awful "banding"/uneven backlighting causes darker lines during camera pans, buzzing emits from panel, somewhat limited inputs
Summary I am now on my second 46" 62u, and unfortunately my second fares no better than my first. I really thought this TV would be outstanding, and at first glance in-store (never a good way to judge a TV) everything is great. However, getting it home and playing stuff on it was a different story.
This panel has some major issues with "banding" (the quotes are used because that may not be technically what it is, but the effect is the same) - essentially, whenever the camera pans up to down or vice-versa, you will see multiple darker horizontal lines appear on the screen. Some people have also reported right to left/left to right vertical "banding," but I have not experienced this. Yes, the stationary picture can be fantastic, but the effect is ruined whenever the camera moves.
The other major issue I've noticed is a buzzing noise emitting from the back of the panel. Now, if you are in an area where there is other noise (PC, people talking, XBox 360, whatever) you may not notice it, but if you are in a quiet room watching a movie, during quiet parts it is very noticeable and very distracting.
Again, this is my second set as I've already exchanged once. I'd expect this quality from a second/third tier brand like Westinghouse, but not from Sharp. Until Sharp addresses these issues, I VERY strongly urge people to NOT purchase this set. Sharp may very well address these issues in the coming months, but as of yet there has been not a peep from them.
You can check around on various popular home theater forums like AVS to read about many people having similar problems. While I have seen a few people satisfied with the 52" model, I've yet to see one single person satisfied with this 46" model.
Pros Awesome picture quality, black levels, details, styling
Cons No CableCard slot
Summary I had been researching the purchase of my first HDTV for approximately two years. I finally took the plunge and purchased a Sharp LC-46D62U. Although I have not had the set for very long, I thought I would share my experience and impressions with it so far, in the hopes that it might be beneficial to those interested.
I am moving up from a 19" CRT. With that in mind, I'm sure you can understand that the size difference alone is staggering. The design of the set looks awesome. I really like the black bezel and the "hidden" speakers below. It has a very clean, modern look. When setting up on the included stand, the main case and stand felt solid and sturdy. I am definitely pleased in this area.
The menu is laid out well. Settings are placed in categories and locations that, for the most part, are highly intuitive. The only setting I initially didn't find was the black level enhancement. When I did find the setting, it was already turned on by default.
Overall Picture Quality & Performance
The picture quality of this display is absolutely incredible. The only input that has not been tested yet is component, as I currently do not have any available devices with that output. In all aspects, this set has vivid colors, excellent black levels, and a good trueness of pictures. For example, when watching a football game, the grass looks so clear and realistic. On some other televisions, it looks like the greens are glowing with an unnatural vibrancy. I have not noticed any ghosting or lag effects, even on rapidly-moving scenes. There has not even been a need to enable the 'Fine Motion' setting.
The only negative I have noticed is that the Sharp struggles somewhat to render smooth gradients. I'm not sure if this is the same or similar to the "banding" issue that some owners have experienced, but I'm guessing it's different since it is very slight. The effect that I can see looks exactly like a limitation of the video processor bit-depth, and I can make out the same effect on most flat panels, even those of other manufacturers. Since Sharp makes no mention of a particular bit-depth, such as 10-bit or 12-bit, my guess is that it uses a standard 8-bit processor, although I have absolutely no technical information to support that assumption (just a guess on my part).
I tend to prefer a slightly darker picture overall. The default 'Dynamic' picture mode has plenty of pop, but to me it's just way overpowering. My typical user settings are as follows...
- OPC: Off
- Backlight: -6
- Contrast: +35
- Brightness: -10
- Color: -2
- Tint: 0
- Sharpness: -8
- Color Temp: Mid-High
- Black: On
- Fine Motion: Off
- Film Mode: On
High Definition Picture Quality
The Sharp has a built-in QAM tuner, so even with basic cable I am able to receive the local channels in HD. The tuner picked up the channels without any problems. The number scheme is new to me, as it uses the QAM frequency, rather than a typical cable-mapped channel number. For example, the CBS high definition channel is 87.2, whereas if you have the HD cable box, the CBS HD channel is 653 or something like that. Since the channel numbers are difficult to remember, I entered them into the available favorite channel listing. The TV allows for four channels on four lines (sixteen total channels) to be entered as favorites, which can then be accessed by the favorite channel buttons on the remote.
The HD picture quality is absolutely stunning. When viewing 1080i source material in 'Dot by Dot' mode, the picture is phenomenal. Even on 720p material, the picture looks amazing. The picture just blew me away while watching some recent NFL games and highlight shows on CBS, NBC, and FOX. The picture has practically no pixelization. The clarity and depth of the high definition material on this set is better than I have seen on any other HDTV.
Standard Definition Picture Quality
Comparing the picture quality of the high definition channels mentioned above to the standard definition channels is really like apples and oranges. However, the Sharp does a commendable job of rendering SD programming. While the 'Smart Stretch' display mode expands the SD material to fill the whole screen, I generally prefer to leave the original aspect ratio in tact by using the 'Side Bar' display mode. For SD programs in the 16:9 format, the 'Zoom' display mode fits the picture to fill the entire screen, with excellent quality (for SD). As previously discussed by another forum member, turning the 'Sharpness' setting down helps considerably with the SD picture quality.
DVD Picture Quality
The clarity of regular DVD movies is impressive. I have tested this using both a regular interlaced GE DVD player over composite (probably about the worst DVD player and signal possible) and using the DVD drive in my PC connection using a DVI-HDMI cable (see the next section for details). Obviously, the DVI-HDMI-connected DVD usage through the PC is much clearer than the standard player over composite. The colors and details are very good. While not up to the quality of a true HD signal, the television renders standard DVDs exceptionally well.
PC Picture Quality
This is one of the major reasons I initially decided to go with an LCD over other display technologies. My connection uses the DVI output of an ATI video card, which is connected to the HDMI input on the Sharp via a DVI-HDMI conversion cable. Quite simply, the picture is amazing. The colors are true, and the clarity is magnificent. The text is crisp and easily readable, even at normal seating distances. Contrary to the CNET editor’s review, the Sharp does accept a 1920 x 1080 PC resolution using the HDMI input. Without any tweaking, the Sharp shows the signal as '1080p'. The display mode is set to 'Dot by Dot' to avoid any overscan. Having a 46" monitor with this type of quality is something to behold. The Sharp really shines in this manner.
This is one area where I think the Samsung panels perform slightly better than the Sharp. Still, the viewing angle on the Sharp is quite good. The Sharp has slight picture washout at angles, particularly in the dark black colors. There is also an interesting effect - it appears that the viewing angle is better at extreme angles than at about 45-50 degrees off-angle. For example, if you start directly facing the screen at the center and move your way in a semi-circle out to an extreme angle, the picture goes from ideal, to slightly washed out, then improves again. My guess is that this is a result of the 'multi-pixel' technology. Overall, the viewing angle is very good. The only LCD panels I have personally seen with better viewing angles are the new Samsungs.
For a television, the sound is quite good. It's better than a lot of other sets I have heard, but it begins to show its limitations when the volume is turned fairly high and/or the source audio contains a significant amount of bass. For the best experience with movies, video games, etc., a dedicated home theater audio system should definitely be utilized.
Before I purchased this Sharp model, I had narrowed the potential field to the Sharp LC-46D62U, the Samsung LN-S4695D and LN-S4696D, and the Mitsubishi LT-46131. I did not get a chance to view the Mitsubishi in action, but I was able to compare the two Samsung models with the Sharp in store. While I think both of the Samsung models are very nice, the Sharp just looked a lot smoother. The biggest difference was when the Sharp was receiving a high definition signal and set to 'Dot by Dot' display mode. With those settings, there are virtually no scaling artifacts. When compared directly to the Samsungs, the artifacts on the Samsung panels became more noticeable. When the Sharp is changed to 'Zoom' or 'Stretch' mode, it more closely resembles the picture on the Samsungs, with regard to scaling artifacts. The areas where the Samsung panels beat the Sharp are trueness of viewing angle, and possibly processor bit-depth. I can't say how it directly compares to the Mitsubishi, as I did not have a chance to view it in comparison.
The information in this post reflects the experience I have had with my panel thus far. This is only my opinion, and please take it as such. There are many excellent manufacturers and models from which to choose, with each having its own share of strengths and weaknesses. From my experience, the Sharp has exceptional performance. I could not be happier with my first HDTV purchase of the Sharp LC-46D62U.
Pros Black is beautiful!
Cons No PC Input
Summary Contrary to one of the reviews ... I have NO "banding" NO uneven backlighting and the panel is silent. Just a spectacular picture with the best black level I have seen on a LCD. I came very close to buying the Sony 46" XBR2. But after seeing the black level of the Sharp I was sold. The picture setting out of the box were poor, but once adjusted this set is spectacular.
I was very hesitant to buy an LCD because our family watches a lot of DVD's in the evening and the black levels I have seen to date I thought would leave me wanting a plasma or missing my old Pioneer Elite projection set. DVD's look better on this set than they do on my DLP set or 46" XBR2 I watched in the store (although SD looks slightly better on the XBR2).
I hooked up the new HD DVR (HR-20) from DirecTV and I am in love. The black level of this set allows evening viewing of even darkly lit movies.
It would have been nice to have a PC VGA port, but I would rather feed a digital signal through a DVI to HDMI cable using the pixel for pixel mode for the cleanest possible picture. A good receiver with HDMI switching will allow for hooking up any equipment you desire. I will be using the Denon 2807 shortly.
I would highly recommend this set to anyone in the market for a flat panel.
"Fantastic TV!"on by SLG66
Pros Very Stylish Looking; Unbelievable HD picture quality, Great viewing angles; Lowest Refresh Rate at 4ms
Cons None at this time other than I wish I went bigger!
Summary As with anything, you can always find poor reviews and/or experiences online. I have recently moved and sold my 60" Sony Grand Vega rear projection TV with the house. I loved that TV and had no complaints with it. Due to size constraints in the new place, I had to downsize a bit. As such, I was wanting to get an LCD to improve the "sharpness" and brightness of whatever unit I got.
Based on reviews and the fact that I am a Sony loyalist, I was hesitant to look at the Sharp Aquos based on the complaints of banding and SD picture quality. I finally went to a store where I could compare the units side by side. While this is the best way to compare the units in use, it is very difficult to get a true feel for the unit as the set up could be wrong, the in-store feed could be degraded, etc. However, the picture was stunning and the look of the unit far outweighs its competitors. Even the Sony Bravia with it's fancy glass surround.
Based on price/value, style(look of the unit), picture quality, and consumer reports rating I chose the Sharp Aquos LC-46D62U.
This TV is fantastic right out of the box. I have no complaints thus far, no banding effects, tremendous High Def picture quality for both movies and sports. The black levels and depth are amazing and I can only imagine how intense the picture will be when I get Blue Ray or HD DVD(now that's another topic altogether--why two formats??????? Reminds me of the old Beta/VHS days. Which one will emerge?)
The standard definition channels look absolutely fine. I don't compare the picture quality of SD to that of HD channels as that is comparing apples to oranges. I compare the picture quality of SD to my old tube TV. It is totally acceptable.
You can't go wrong with this TV. In fact, you can't go wrong with most Brand name high quality HD TV's. Remember, you won't be looking at the TV you choose next to all the other models. Once you get it home, you will think, how did I ever watch TV in standard def? Once you go HD, you will never go back...
Pros beautiful looking tv, picture is stunning, black levels are outstanding,
Cons nasty "banding" issue plaguing Sharp, could be more inputs
Summary This TV is beautiful on or off. I had a LC-45d40u and must say Sharp really raised the bar with this panel. The picture is more vibrant and blacks are so much better I thought my eyes were deceiving me. Using the "Digital Video Essentials" disk to calibrate I noticed this TV rendered the "below black" levels that my previous model couldn't realize. Simply amazing! And 1080P to boot!
I spent many hours comparing this with the Samsung and Sony models and kept coming back to the Sharp. It is a real shame this line is plagued by a QC problem but Sharp is stepping up and admitting there is a problem which is encouraging. Hopefully soon those that got a "banding" set will get a replacement and see what this TV truly has to offer.