The Good Can produce deep blacks with excellent shadow detail; can resolve every line of 1080 resolution sources; compact design with bottom-mounted speakers; incredible amounts of picture control; ample connectivity with dual 1080p-compatible HDMI inputs, three component-video inputs and a PC input.
The Bad Somewhat expensive; inaccurate primary colors; no picture-in-picture; disappointing VGA connection.
The Bottom Line Although more costly than its DLP competition, the excellent picture quality of Sony's KDS-60A2000 will be worth the difference to most viewers.
Sony has enjoyed a lofty place on our top HDTV products lists for a long time, first with the KD-34XBR960 CRT television, then with the KDL-V40XBR1 LCD, and most recently with the KDS-R60XBR1 rear-projection, our highest-rated HDTV for 2005. So it stands to reason that we'd expect big things from the less-expensive successor to the 60XBR1, Sony's KDS-60A2000 ($3,699). On paper, this HDTV offers just about everything its predecessor delivered: an SXRD light engine, full 1,920x1,080 (a.k.a. 1080p) native resolution, and scads of inputs and picture controls. It also brings a couple of improvements, including the ability to accept 1080p sources via HDMI and a more compact cabinet. In person, its image quality is just as impressive, delivering all the sharpness of the highest-resolution HDTV formats, excellent black level performance, and good color. Of course, it also costs a few hundred more than some of its competition, but if you're looking for the state of the high-def art, it's worth it.
Editors' note: When we first received our KDS-60A2000 review sample we noticed that it could not resolve any of the finest details in a 1080i test pattern. When we showed Sony's engineers the failed pattern, they promised to look into it. After issuing a vague preliminary statement that was originally printed here, the company followed up by admitting that some models in the field may indeed be incapable of resolving all of 1080i. Click here for details.
Sony also provided instructions that allowed us to modify the service menu to address the issue ourselves (we encourage owners who want to get the fix for their TVs to contact Sony directly). After the fix, our KDS-60A2000 passed the test pattern normally. Overall, we don't consider this issue a deal-breaker either way, since we found it impossible to discern prefix images from postfix with normal program material. See the Performance page of this review for more.
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