Have I ruined my TV
January 13, 2012 3:38 AM   Subscribe

Have I ruined my TV?

I have this Samsung LED TV, and up until last night it was working fine. I had it attached to the wall (using a standard tilt mount), and as a result the input plugs have become hard to see. Last night, I was trying to stick my USB pen drive into the TV to watch a movie, and as I couldn't see the input jacks correctly, I have stuck the USB plug from the pen drive into an HDMI input. It didn't go all the way; in fact, the contacts barely touched, but immediately after I did that, the screen went black and all I have now is the audio.

The TV seems to be working, since I can change channels, source (HDMI, set-top box, PS3), hear the audio, etc. But the Samsung logo disappeared from the boot screen, and I cannot see the pictures anymore.

Did I fry my TV's video card, or is there any kind of recovery procedure I can apply without having it serviced?
posted by dcrocha to Technology (11 answers total)
It does sound as if you've done some damage there. I assume you've tried the usual thing of unplugging it from the mains, waiting a while, then plugging it back in?
posted by le morte de bea arthur at 3:52 AM on January 13, 2012

Response by poster: Yes, I have tried all that, and left it unplugged the whole night to no avail...
posted by dcrocha at 3:52 AM on January 13, 2012

While it is unplugged, try pressing the power button on the TV a few times, and holding it down for a few seconds. This works sometimes with electronic devices because (I think? Maybe this is all bollocks...) it discharges any capacitors. This has worked for me previously with laptops and washing machines that were malfunctioning.
posted by EndsOfInvention at 3:57 AM on January 13, 2012

It does sound as if you've done some damage there.

How? An HDMI connector has a +5VDC pin and a bunch of logic lines. So what if you short out the pins? It shouldn't cause any damage. And a USB stick certainly isn't carrying any dangerous voltages. My guess is that you can somehow reset it and keep trying that.
posted by three blind mice at 4:49 AM on January 13, 2012

I've read of various modern televisions being bricked when someone plugs a USB key into something that isn't meant to accept one -- HDMI, service ports, and the like. I think you may want to call Samsung; I'm having trouble tracking down links for what I've read previously, unfortunately, but as I recall it's usually not user-fixable.
posted by ellF at 4:52 AM on January 13, 2012

Do you still get the on screen display when switching channels, or absolutely no video?

One other thing to check, is it possible you could have placed some strain on the mount. I have heard about someone only getting a picture when a samsung TV was not mounted. In this case, I think it was related to the mounting bolts placing pressure on something within the TV. You might want to check the mount.
posted by NoDef at 6:06 AM on January 13, 2012

Another place to check is at AVSForum - you can usually find model-specific threads where folks discuss tweaks, calibration, optimal settings and whatnot. Might be worth posting in there to see if there's a factory reset option someplace in a service menu.
posted by jquinby at 6:35 AM on January 13, 2012

Call their tech support line. Describe the symptoms, but don't mention sticking a USB key in the HDMI port. Is it still under warranty?
posted by empath at 6:55 AM on January 13, 2012 [2 favorites]

Response by poster: @NoDef I get absolutely no video, unfortunately.

I will call Samsung's hot line to see what they say.
posted by dcrocha at 7:03 AM on January 13, 2012

Best answer: This is from another forum, posted by a Samsung tech.

There is a reset option, however I don't believe it's going to help, particularly if you have a power issue. If you'd like to try it anyway, with the TV powered ON, press and hold the EXIT button on the remote for 15 seconds until you're prompted to "RESET?". Click YES in the television will restore back to factory standards. That said, if it's an issue with the power supply or any other internal part, it's probably not to change anything. I'm not trying to be defeatist here, just realistic. I hope that's conveyed with the respect that I'm intending to come across with.

posted by MarvinJ at 7:09 AM on January 13, 2012

Go to the Samsung Support page for your TV. Click on the Troubleshooting Guide (located under the Common Inquires heading) - Picture Troubleshooting - No Picture - I Have Audio But No Video. Follow the steps under Finding the Source of the Problem.
posted by plokent at 11:17 AM on January 13, 2012

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