no, i don’t get the picture

Last November, I noted that my television was showing signs of failure, and might need to be replaced. Recently the signs have been mounting. For probably close to a year, the set might work fine for a few days, then out of the blue I can turn it on to find the picture distorted; this can last a few hours or a few days, and then the screen reverts to normal.

Over the past few weeks, though, there have been some new behaviors. Occasionally, in the middle of watching a program the picture will just vanish. Usually when this happens, just turning the set off and back on will bring the video back.

And last night, about halfway through Sunday’s TiVoed episode of Sex and the City, Sarah Jessica Parker suddenly started to flouresce in a kaleidoscope of colors. After a few moments of wild color oscillations–though oddly mostly just in the flesh tone range–like some sort of cool media player visualization, the video desaturated leaving us with only a grayscale image. Briefly disoriented, I imagined Carrie and Aleksandr leaving Manhattan for Pleasantville.

Turning the set off and on again resolved this issue as well, at least for the nonce. But it probably really is time for the boyfriend and me to start shopping for a new set.

3 thoughts on “no, i don’t get the picture

  1. How old is the television? If it’s from the early 90s or so, you might consider getting it repaired rather than replacing it.
    Newer televisions are made cheaply, they’ll tend to die in 4 or 5 years. Older televisions are made much better, and will tend to last much longer than the newer ones.
    e.g. We have a ~1990 TV that finally gave up the ghost last year, after 13 years of service. We paid ~$100 to get it repaired, and the guy that repaired it (who’s been working on TVs almost forever) checked the rest of it out and figures that with the fix he made, it’s now probably good to go for another 10 or 15 years.
    Of course, if you want bigger or whatever, this advice doesn’t help. 🙂

  2. The TV is probably about six years old (I bought it sometime the first year after moving into my condo the fall of 1997).
    I don’t know that I’ll go any bigger (the ailing one is a 40-inch widescreen), but I do want at least an HD-ready set.

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