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Sony Bravia KDL-46W4500 46in LCD TV - Sony Bravia KDL-46W4500

John Archer

By John Archer

Reviewed:

Summary

Our Score:

6

Having recently kind of liked the 46W4500's bigger brother, the 52in 52W4500, my aforementioned optimistic strain was definitely hoping for the 46in model to step up a gear. But as you can guess from my downbeat opening to this review, the 46W4500 goes the other way.

The main reason for this is the extent to which the 46W4500 suffers from the only real problem I had with the 52W4500 - pools of leaking light spilling across the picture during dark scenes.

I'd hoped that this problem as noted on the 52W4500 would have turned out to be a one-off, restricted to the 52in model in the W4500 range. But it's actually even worse on the 46W4500.

The darkness of the cell Bruce Wayne ends up in after his fight with other prison inmates early on in Batman Begins on Blu-ray thus looks really washed out in places, with overt grey clouding and a resulting lack of depth and background detail.

Grey clouding is hardly a rarity on an LCD TV, of course. But the localised nature of the 46W4500's clouding is anything but common, and in my opinion is even more distracting and annoying than if the greyness had affected the screen uniformly.

The light pooling problem seems somehow more aggressive on the 46W4500 than it did on the 52W4500, so that once you've become aware of it over very dark shots you also start to see traces of its existence over even relatively medium brightness shots.

As well as clearly reducing the 46W4500's black level response, the pooling problem makes many pictures look strangely patchy and inconsistent, and possibly even has a negative impact on the set's colour toning. Certainly something is going on that makes the 46W4500's colours seem less vibrant and natural in tone as those of the 52W4500.

Making the problems with dark scenes even worse is the fact that the 46W4500's pictures degrade quite significantly in terms of black level and colour response if watched from much of an angle.

ilovethemonkeyhead

October 28, 2008, 11:12 am

light might bleed seems to be a real problem with some of the w4500 series panels. however, i've seen the 40 inch version of the screen and i personally haven't seen any light bleed. do you think you could show a picture demonstrating how bad the bleed can get?

Eric67

October 28, 2008, 1:28 pm

Other professional reviewers such as what hifi and lesnumeriques consider this an excellent TV. Now who's right?


I think you had a faulty set, I cannot imagine this model is that bad.

Anders Åkesson

October 28, 2008, 1:29 pm

The problem you describe as picture-ruining light pooling problem what usually is referred to as clouding? And doesn't this phenomena go away after a couple of hundred hours of viewing?

basicasic

October 28, 2008, 4:03 pm

This is the sort of review I want to read. I'm hoping to buy a large screen TV soon and if its bad news I want to know about it. Too many review sites are scared witless to criticise an item they're testing for fear of upsetting manufacturers and getting crossed off the review sample list.





And even if it is a faulty set thats inexcusable too. If its a Sony supplied review sample then you would expect it to be one of the best samples they could find. If its randomly purchased for testing then their quality control is questionable. It could be any member of the public paying top money for a 'Sony' and getting poor quality for it.

darkcamel

October 28, 2008, 7:08 pm

Another Sony tv with apparent picture issues. Also that silver bit at the front is a design faux pas. They had the cloudy screen issue with the X2000. Personally I wouldnt touch a Sony with the QE2s barge pole, having seen Panasonic and Pioneer plasmas. Nice to see a balanced review rather than those magazine reviewers trying to keep their advertisers happy.

Luan Bach

October 29, 2008, 4:45 pm

People in other forums are reporting the same issue. I'm kind of glad I bought the W4000 now.

Lew

October 29, 2008, 6:47 pm

John,...HELLO, anyone looking to buy a sony tv would have noticed alot of confusing moves on sony's part regarding HDTVs in the 4 months, eg;





1. canellation of the 40x4500- with only the bra pro 2 as an anvantage over the z and w 4500.


2. which is the better pick x3500 or w4500 (40 inches)- sure the x3500 is better at sd, dvd, free view, screen uniformed, build, looks, softer hd image and at the most darkest of scences it's black is deeper or on par....but the w4500 is better at brightness, contrast, features, viewing angle (poor uniformed screen), sharper at HD (weak on sd/freeview), cheaper build, uptodate menu system.?????? which does one pick,???? hellthe cost the same now





3. WHAT HAPPENED TO THE PRO ENGINE?...anyone. they seem not to care for it, they jumped to pro 2 and Bravia Engine 2, the z model should have got the pro engine so there would be reason enough to get it over the w4500. maybe it seem the usefulness of the pros is pointless when you consider free hd freeview?????????





4. the price of the 46x4500??? compared to the better, not as bright 50 pioneer 8 an 9th





...............well i have to say till two months ago i was set to buy a 40x3000, but now i am sooo so lost , i think will just buy a pioneer 50 and cover all the bases (future, value, image qaulity and build).





I would love to see you review the 40w4500, to round off everything, coz i respect your take and reviews?





kind regards,


Lewis

Lew

October 29, 2008, 6:59 pm

David ,...HELLO, anyone looking to buy a sony tv now, would have noticed alot of confusing moves on sony's part regarding HDTVs in the 4 months, eg;





1. canellation of the 40x4500- with only the bra pro 2 as an anvantage over the z and w 4500.





2. which is the better pick x3500 or w4500 (40 inches)- sure the x3500 is better at sd, dvd, free view, screen uniformed, build, looks, softer hd image and at the most darkest of pictures, it's black is deeper or on par....but the w4500 is better at brightness, contrast, features, viewing angle (poor uniformed screen), sharper at HD (weak on sd/freeview), cheaper build, uptodate menu system.?????? which does one pick,???? hellthe cost the same now





...REALLY HOW IMPORTANT IS THE BLACK OVER THE PRO ENGINE ?





3. WHAT HAPPENED TO THE PRO ENGINE?...anyone?.... they seem not to care for it, COZ WELL they jumped to pro 2 and Bravia Engine 2, the z model should have got the pro engine so there would be reason enough to get it over the w4500. maybe it seem the usefulness of the pros is pointless when you consider free hd freeview????????? IF AND WHEN IT HAPPENS AND WORKS????





4. the price of the 46x4500??? compared to the better, not as bright 50 pioneer 8 an 9th





...............well i have to say till two months ago i was set to buy a 40x3000, but now i am sooo so lost , i think will just buy a pioneer 50 and cover all the bases (future, value, image qaulity and build).





I would love to see you review the 40w4500, to round off everything, coz i respect your take and reviews?





kind regards,


jack

jose 1

November 27, 2008, 6:31 am

See the pictures of the cloudind on my tv http://whathifi.com/forums/1/1...


is really very annoying....

adamuchan

December 16, 2008, 3:25 pm

This is a very interesting article indeed, our house was burgled 2 weeks ago, they stole our plasma from our room but left the Sony Bravia 46 in V series tv in the lounge. With my insurance claim I bought a 46 in W series with 100 hz motion flow today. I then replaced the sony in the lounge (Which is only 3 months old) with this new W series.... I thought that the w series had to have had a flaw with it!! I thought u have to be kidding, the V series (Cheaper version) runs rings around it in every respect, We have Sky HD and a sony PS3 runnning at 1080P. I am staggered at the lack of crispness of the picture compared to using the V series LCD in the same way. I may take this TV back, it is horribly disappointing. The cheaper V without fancy motion flow rains all over it for HD moving images, the 46 in W series makes HD look like a good SD with its blurry patches. What have you done sony???

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