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Should I get a broken Samsung 46" HDTV fixed?
June 27, 2010 5:10 PM   Subscribe

Has anyone repaired a Samsung 46 inch flatscreen successfully? Mine is only 2 years old and has 3 thin white lines going through it creating 4 horizontal sections in the screen. In addition the right half of the screen is blurry. That blurriness is a problem that we've had for a while but after the tv was on for about 15 minutes it would go away. Now within the past week the white lines have appeared and the blurriness doesn't go away.

I'm trying to decide if it is worth trying to get a repairman to come look at it or if we should just buy a new tv. I've done alot of searching online and have found several similar stories as mine with this Samsung 46" but haven't determined if anybody has figured out what the problem is and how much the part/repair is.

If anyone is an electronics expert or has had a similar experience with a HDTV and knows what the problem is and the approximate cost to fix it--I would appreciate some guidance.
posted by nmk17 to Technology (12 answers total)
 
Any potential solution depends entirely on what kind of screen it is... LCD? Plasma? DLP? Projection?
posted by SquidLips at 5:42 PM on June 27, 2010


It is an LCD.
posted by nmk17 at 5:44 PM on June 27, 2010


we have the samsung 36 - within a few weeks of getting it, one entire side went dim. we called support, they sent a guy out - everyone along the way said that if it was a display problem like that they were just going to replace the entire board - it was easier that way.
posted by nadawi at 6:04 PM on June 27, 2010


OK. LCD rules out bad convergence as the blurriness culprit.

The fact that you have white lines, and not black lines, means (I believe) that there is power getting to those rows of pixels, but something is forcing them to be all white.

I'm not a repair guy, but I am an IT guy who has seen his share of LCD screen issues. It's not necessarily an apples to apples comparison, but in my experience, the equipment is cheap enough nowadays that it's usually not cost effective to repair. I can't really explain the blurriness, that is a problem I have never seen on an LCD, and seems strange, given the nature of an LCD screen. If it's a clear distinct line between blurry and clear parts of the screen, my first inclination would be a bad display logic / control board, which might be the cheapest thing to fix, I would think. But I'm sure someone with more expertise than I will have some better ideas.

If it were my TV I probably wouldn't think twice about going to get a new one as opposed to repair, and I would steer clear of LCD, IMHO. YMMV.
posted by SquidLips at 6:06 PM on June 27, 2010


I'm not a TV repair guy either but I concur with SquidLips. Generally speaking, it's pretty tough to get parts for out of warranty TVs these days. A quick search on Froogle shows that a new Samsung 46" LCD starts at about $550. Any repair would cost you at least half that. Doesn't seem worth it to me. Like SquidLips I also prefer plasmsa to LCD (unless you do a lot of gaming where burn in can still be an issue).
posted by sockpup at 6:16 PM on June 27, 2010


From what I've seen the LCD itself (which sounds ok from your description) is the most expensive part of the tv. The board isn't worth anything. You may be able to get your hands on a used board and hook it up to see.
posted by thekiltedwonder at 12:17 AM on June 28, 2010


The fact that you have white lines, and not black lines, means (I believe) that there is power getting to those rows of pixels

Nope. LCD pixels darken when powered. That's why the best screen saver pattern for an LCD panel, and the only one that will eliminate temporary burn-in patterns if used consistently, is all-white.
posted by flabdablet at 6:22 AM on June 28, 2010


Blurriness on a LCD panel is probably caused by an addressing fault that's losing the distinction between odd and even columns in that region, resulting in an effective halving of the panel resolution.

If that were my TV, I'd be lugging it into a repair shop rather than having somebody come out. Any decent tech will have seen the fault you're describing and should be able to give you a pretty good estimated cost to repair on first sighting of the fault. Getting somebody to come to you will involve paying them for travel time.
posted by flabdablet at 6:27 AM on June 28, 2010


Unfortunately there is no way I can physically bring it to a repair shop and it is $100 each way for them to pick up and drop off plus $75 to look at it. If it is repairable they apply the $75 to the repair bill but it's still $200 just to transport it.
posted by nmk17 at 9:39 AM on June 28, 2010


"Unfortunately there is no way I can physically bring it to a repair shop and it is $100 each way for them to pick up and drop off plus $75 to look at it. If it is repairable they apply the $75 to the repair bill but it's still $200 just to transport it." Looks to me like you've pretty-much answered your own question. You have a piece of electronics that is going bad. IT will cost a minimum of $275 to fix it. You can get a new one for around $500. Case closed. My five year old Samsung is doing just fine, but if it went bad tomorrow, it would be my new boat anchor and I don't even own a boat.
posted by Old Geezer at 11:15 AM on June 28, 2010


Hmm... Did you buy it with a credit card? Depending on the credit card, you might have an extra extended warranty. I would check that out before buying a new TV.
posted by parakeetdog at 1:26 PM on June 28, 2010


Update: it needed a new LCD panel which was ridiculously expensive to fix so I bought a new tv. The guy that looked at it said that he had seen a lot of problems with that particular model of samsung. I ended up getting a 46" Sony Bravia LED and I love it.
posted by nmk17 at 7:55 PM on July 20, 2010


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