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post #1 of 13 Old 08-09-2012, 12:16 PM - Thread Starter
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I've been reading the plasma forums and decided for a plasma I would buy a Panasonic 55 inch UT50 if I were to decide to go with plasma. But I want to weigh my options. Can someone help give me idea of some good LCD TVs that are out right now? I would like to go with 55 inches or close to it, I'm upgrading from a 32" Sony BX300. I like the TV and don't see anything wrong with it, I would just like a larger screen. I didn't know if LED lit TVs were as good as CCFL, but I don't really know the details of how each work. It just seemed to me that a panel lit by the edges would be dim in the center compared to the edges unless some really intricate light diffusion was used . And from what I read about "full array" panels is they don't have local dimming.

I would be using the TV for at least 95% movies and then PC use, gaming (some PC, some console) and viewing pictures, the amount of use would be in that order. As for price, I don't really want to spend more than $1100 since I can easily finance a TV that amount, tax included.

What are some of the favorite brands for LCD? Is Sony still a top brand or have others like Samsung and LG kind of become the go to brand? I know that the black levels of plasma can't be beat by LCD, but even though my living room is typically not well lit without the 4x bulb CFL ceiling light on, I think LCD will be okay for me. I'm mostly concerned about IR with plasma because the majority of my movies are not 16x9 some most of my movies will display black bars, either on the sides or top and bottom.

Suggestions and ideas are much appreciated and if anyone can explain why LED isn't as bad as I think compared to CCFL, I'd love to hear the reasoning.
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post #2 of 13 Old 08-09-2012, 01:52 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by anikun07 View Post

I've been reading the plasma forums and decided for a plasma I would buy a Panasonic 55 inch UT50 if I were to decide to go with plasma. But I want to weigh my options. Can someone help give me idea of some good LCD TVs that are out right now? I would like to go with 55 inches or close to it, I'm upgrading from a 32" Sony BX300. I like the TV and don't see anything wrong with it, I would just like a larger screen. I didn't know if LED lit TVs were as good as CCFL, but I don't really know the details of how each work. It just seemed to me that a panel lit by the edges would be dim in the center compared to the edges unless some really intricate light diffusion was used . And from what I read about "full array" panels is they don't have local dimming.
I would be using the TV for at least 95% movies and then PC use, gaming (some PC, some console) and viewing pictures, the amount of use would be in that order. As for price, I don't really want to spend more than $1100 since I can easily finance a TV that amount, tax included.
What are some of the favorite brands for LCD? Is Sony still a top brand or have others like Samsung and LG kind of become the go to brand? I know that the black levels of plasma can't be beat by LCD, but even though my living room is typically not well lit without the 4x bulb CFL ceiling light on, I think LCD will be okay for me. I'm mostly concerned about IR with plasma because the majority of my movies are not 16x9 some most of my movies will display black bars, either on the sides or top and bottom.
Suggestions and ideas are much appreciated and if anyone can explain why LED isn't as bad as I think compared to CCFL, I'd love to hear the reasoning.

Most edge-lit LED-LCDs are inferior to CCFL-LCDs of recent years, specifically in the areas of screen uniformity and viewing angles. They are also far more expensive on average. However, there aren't many CCFL models available this year, especially in the larger screen sizes (and only entry-level models are left at this point).

For Samsung this year, I'd go with the UN55EH6000, which sells for about $1,200. The lower EH series models are all under 55", the largest ones being 50".

For LG this year, I don't think they make any non edge-lit sets in your price range (not sure if they make any in ANY price range either).

For Sony this year, the KDL-55BX520 appears to be a CCFL model for about $1,200.


At this point, it should be clear I don't recommend edge-lit LED-LCDs of any kind, simply because they are designed for thinness/style (thin panel thickness and bezels) over PQ and value. It seems you feel the same way about this backlight technology/layout.
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post #3 of 13 Old 08-09-2012, 02:28 PM - Thread Starter
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Thanks Plasma, I feel the same way about edge lit. I kind of get the feeling the LCD TVs are moving in a direction of poor PQ for "affordable" sets. Since I never owned or have seen a plasma TV in someone's home I'm afraid to buy one because it may not be what I want. I've always owned and watched LCD TVs and monitors, so I have some expectation of what I'm getting. But I feel at a loss of where to start looking at LCD TVs. For plasma every pretty.much says Panasonic or Samsung, not a whole lot to choose from, LCD is different in that regard.
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post #4 of 13 Old 08-09-2012, 04:31 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by anikun07 View Post

Suggestions and ideas are much appreciated and if anyone can explain why LED isn't as bad as I think compared to CCFL, I'd love to hear the reasoning.


I agree about "too much reading". . . and the results you get are, unfortunately and usually, more confusion. For the price range your are considering, I think you already narrowed it down but I would give the edge to the 55EH6000. I've looked at several and compared them to both Panasonic and Sony. The 55E6000 is a limited Full Array Direct Lit LED TV. Unlike even more expensive edge lit Samsungs, it isn't plagued with micro dimming and some other issues. Samsung essentially took their CCFL TVs and converted them to a limited Direct Lit LED Array behind the LCD panel and also used a diffusion layer to get a pretty even light distribution. The EH series is limited in inputs, but if 2 aren't enough there ARE HDMI switches or you can always ad an AVR with more HDMI capability.

All in all I was impressed with the EH series which are much better than some reviewers make them out to be. To be sure, color saturation and blacklevel could be better, but with the right settings and ambient room lighitng ( use a bias light behind the TV) I think you will be well pleased. Especially coming from a 32" older tech TV.

EDIT: Seriously consider try using a small light source behind the TV and limit ambient light from entering the sides of your eyes from room or ceiling lamps. By using a small 13 watt CCFL lamp behind the TV, perceived black level will be increased and the "black bars" will not be a problem in 4:3 movies. Also, keep the back light level of the LEDs down to 25% to 30% of whatever the maximum setting is. Lower back light will give optimum black level for any TV. But you probably know all this.smile.gif


Here's a link at Crutchfield. Look under "Details" and then, "Video Features" for a description of the LED back lighting.

http://www.crutchfield.com/p_30555E6000/Samsung-UN55EH6000.html?search=55EH6000&skipvs=T#details-tab
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post #5 of 13 Old 08-09-2012, 05:12 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by anikun07 View Post

I've been reading the plasma forums and decided for a plasma I would buy a Panasonic 55 inch UT50 if I were to decide to go with plasma. But I want to weigh my options. Can someone help give me idea of some good LCD TVs that are out right now? I would like to go with 55 inches or close to it, I'm upgrading from a 32" Sony BX300. I like the TV and don't see anything wrong with it, I would just like a larger screen. I didn't know if LED lit TVs were as good as CCFL, but I don't really know the details of how each work. It just seemed to me that a panel lit by the edges would be dim in the center compared to the edges unless some really intricate light diffusion was used . And from what I read about "full array" panels is they don't have local dimming.
I would be using the TV for at least 95% movies and then PC use, gaming (some PC, some console) and viewing pictures, the amount of use would be in that order. As for price, I don't really want to spend more than $1100 since I can easily finance a TV that amount, tax included.
What are some of the favorite brands for LCD? Is Sony still a top brand or have others like Samsung and LG kind of become the go to brand? I know that the black levels of plasma can't be beat by LCD, but even though my living room is typically not well lit without the 4x bulb CFL ceiling light on, I think LCD will be okay for me. I'm mostly concerned about IR with plasma because the majority of my movies are not 16x9 some most of my movies will display black bars, either on the sides or top and bottom.
Suggestions and ideas are much appreciated and if anyone can explain why LED isn't as bad as I think compared to CCFL, I'd love to hear the reasoning.

personally you said 95% movies key word there plasma is a superior movie experience compared to lcd anything unless you getting a over priced elite i would revisit plasma technology again. when i want to watch movies i go straight to my new lg plasma and put it on and folks that come over are stunned try watcing a james bond film on a new school plasma you will be blown away Gaming is a toss up pending alot of factors pc use does not matter as you just want a bigger screen smile.gif
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post #6 of 13 Old 08-09-2012, 05:40 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RockmanX View Post

personally you said 95% movies key word there plasma is a superior movie experience compared to lcd anything unless you getting a over priced elite i would revisit plasma technology again. when i want to watch movies i go straight to my new lg plasma and put it on and folks that come over are stunned try watcing a james bond film on a new school plasma you will be blown away Gaming is a toss up pending alot of factors pc use does not matter as you just want a bigger screen smile.gif

If the OP does go that route, the Panasonic 50" ST50 can be had for about $1,200 and is a vastly superior choice to the 55" UT50.
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post #7 of 13 Old 08-09-2012, 08:10 PM - Thread Starter
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I agree about "too much reading". . . and the results you get are, unfortunately and usually, more confusion. For the price range your are considering, I think you already narrowed it down but I would give the edge to the 55EH6000. I've looked at several and compared them to both Panasonic and Sony. The 55E6000 is a limited Full Array Direct Lit LED TV. Unlike even more expensive edge lit Samsungs, it isn't plagued with micro dimming and some other issues. Samsung essentially took their CCFL TVs and converted them to a limited Direct Lit LED Array behind the LCD panel and also used a diffusion layer to get a pretty even light distribution. The EH series is limited in inputs, but if 2 aren't enough there ARE HDMI switches or you can always ad an AVR with more HDMI capability.
All in all I was impressed with the EH series which are much better than some reviewers make them out to be. To be sure, color saturation and blacklevel could be better, but with the right settings and ambient room lighitng ( use a bias light behind the TV) I think you will be well pleased. Especially coming from a 32" older tech TV.
EDIT: Seriously consider try using a small light source behind the TV and limit ambient light from entering the sides of your eyes from room or ceiling lamps. By using a small 13 watt CCFL lamp behind the TV, perceived black level will be increased and the "black bars" will not be a problem in 4:3 movies. Also, keep the back light level of the LEDs down to 25% to 30% of whatever the maximum setting is. Lower back light will give optimum black level for any TV. But you probably know all this.smile.gif
Here's a link at Crutchfield. Look under "Details" and then, "Video Features" for a description of the LED back lighting.
http://www.crutchfield.com/p_30555E6000/Samsung-UN55EH6000.html?search=55EH6000&skipvs=T#details-tab

I thought I might have read that the corners of direct lit Samsung LCDs had dimmer corners, but maybe that's why you recommended 25%-30% of the max brightness.

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Originally Posted by PlasmaPZ80U View Post

If the OP does go that route, the Panasonic 50" ST50 can be had for about $1,200 and is a vastly superior choice to the 55" UT50.

I know this isn't the PDP forum, but why is the ST50 so much better than the UT50? By reading the UT50 Discussion Forum they make it sound like it's just as good as the ST50. I've considered the ST50, too, but didn't know that I needed the filter. I was mostly just worried that the PDP wouldn't look as sharp and crisp as LCD for still frames as mentioned by some of the ST/UT owners have commented. That would be due to the dithering of the pixels. The still frames look quite good on my 32" and it's only 720p - I know I would have to sit a little closer than the 10' that I sit at in order to have the acuity to see 1080p, but as I said, I was concerned the still shots wouldn't be as crisp.

Since you mention that James Bond movies looks amazing on your PDP, I assume you would say that all movies will look better on it compared to LCD. My favorite movies to watch are Star Wars and James Bond. I can't wait for the Bond 50 box to come out next month. But how do you like the LG compared to Panasonic? That's one brand I haven't looked at much but only because it feels like the general consensus of PDP owners seem very partial to Panasonic.

Thanks for you help, I really appreciate it. I wasn't getting the suggestions I needed in the individual panel or the "What Should I Buy?" forums, too much bombardment of questions.
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post #8 of 13 Old 08-10-2012, 06:23 AM
 
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Just curious. Would a 46" TV be large enough for your room size and viewing distance? Generally, a 46" LED would have better screen uniformity and perhaps a bit better crispness. Also easier to move when needed. Also, I tend to like a the thicker bezels on TVs for better panel support which usually results in more even back lighting for LED/LCD. A 46EH600 can be purchased for well under $1,000.
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post #9 of 13 Old 08-10-2012, 06:39 AM - Thread Starter
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My room is 13x13 feet, and my eyes are about 10 feet from the screen. I didn't think 46" would give me the size increase I wanted over a 32". Even though the size vs distance calculators suggest at least 60", that's just too big. I was originally thinking 50" but at that time I was looking at the ST50 and BB only carries the 55" in stores in my area so I had my mind set of 55" because of that. Thanks for the PM, the details you sent were awesome, I wouldn't have guesses about power and brightness with plasma. My room lighting during the day is dim, not a whole lot of sunlight comes in, a light is needed in order to read. The TV is about 18" from one wall and the couch is about 10' opposite the TV. We have a ceiling light in the center of the room that uses four 60 watt replacement CFL bulbs so it's plenty bright but so as bright as a sunroom facing south would be. You mentioned the EH6000, but I don't think that is 3D. I wasn't sure if LCD were only passive 3D and plasmas do active now, does it matter? I don't know how often I would watch 3D, but I do really want to see Despicable Me in 3D.
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post #10 of 13 Old 08-10-2012, 08:26 AM
 
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Oh, I didn't see that you also wanted 3D. There are pro's and cons there. First, not sure where the current 3D technology will end up. Still not a lot of 3D program material. But if 3D is what you want then the plasma may be better, or maybe a Samsung ES series. I feel LG has slipped this year in almost all areas. Perhaps with the room size and distance a 50" PDP might be best then? As always. . . trade off with everything. But if you are looking at Best Buy you can ask and make SURE you can return a TV if not satisfied. Maybe try a Panasonic plasma and if not your cup of tea then an Samsung LED. But then you start to push $2,000+ becsuse they seem to like to load on "smart TV" features.
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post #11 of 13 Old 08-10-2012, 08:48 AM - Thread Starter
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I just looked at Sony, Toshiba, Sharp, and Samsung websites and didn't see much for 3D. I don't know how much 3D content we'll watch or own, but there may be a couple titles so I think I'd like that capability. I was flat out against 3D 'til I saw Prometheus on a 3D IMAX screen. I know it wouldn't be the same at home, but I did like the subtleties the depth gave the viewing experience. It seems like Plasma is the only way to get 3D and something that isn't edge lit for under $2000. But at least by exploring the LCD options I can have please of mind that I looked and couldn't find what I was looking for.
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post #12 of 13 Old 08-10-2012, 10:26 AM
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Dim room, movies, square room. That's a no brainer for plasma. Better blacks, better motion, better detail in shadowns, better viewing angle, better screen unformity. Plasma will blow you and your guest away in that situation.

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post #13 of 13 Old 08-10-2012, 10:57 AM
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I know this isn't the PDP forum, but why is the ST50 so much better than the UT50? By reading the UT50 Discussion Forum they make it sound like it's just as good as the ST50. I've considered the ST50, too, but didn't know that I needed the filter. I was mostly just worried that the PDP wouldn't look as sharp and crisp as LCD for still frames as mentioned by some of the ST/UT owners have commented. That would be due to the dithering of the pixels. The still frames look quite good on my 32" and it's only 720p - I know I would have to sit a little closer than the 10' that I sit at in order to have the acuity to see 1080p, but as I said, I was concerned the still shots wouldn't be as crisp.
Since you mention that James Bond movies looks amazing on your PDP, I assume you would say that all movies will look better on it compared to LCD. My favorite movies to watch are Star Wars and James Bond. I can't wait for the Bond 50 box to come out next month. But how do you like the LG compared to Panasonic? That's one brand I haven't looked at much but only because it feels like the general consensus of PDP owners seem very partial to Panasonic.
Thanks for you help, I really appreciate it. I wasn't getting the suggestions I needed in the individual panel or the "What Should I Buy?" forums, too much bombardment of questions.

The dark screen filter is one important difference as it overcomes a common issue with plasmas screens: glare and washout of blacks/contrast ratio under direct ambient light. With the dark screen filter, the ST50 holds CR and black levels as well as any glossy LED/LCD on the market today. Only matte screen LEDs/LCDs will be more suited for bright room viewing. Furthermore, the ST50 is a mid-range set with PQ very close to the GT50 and VT50. The UT50 is an entry-level 1080p set, which provides lesser picture quality across the board.

from CNET's review of the UT50:

The good: In pure dollar/performance terms the Panasonic TC-P50UT50 is one of the best TVs we've seen, with astounding picture quality for the money. Black levels are the equal of Panasonic's ST50 series in a darkened room, shadow detail is very good, and colors are accurate. Unlike an LCD, as a plasma TV it has superb off-angle and uniformity characteristics. Despite the low price, the UT50 is still studded with the latest features, including 3D and Smart TV.

The bad: The UT50 series doesn't perform very well in a lit room, with blacks becoming muddy and indistinct. The performance of 3D is only passable, with quite distinct ghosting effects. The TV lacks advanced setup controls, which makes tweaking a better picture almost impossible. With only three video inputs it's not suited to users with lots of gear.

The bottom line: The Panasonic TC-P50UT50 plasma TV nearly matches the world-beating picture quality of the ST50 series, at an even lower price.
from CNET's review of the ST50:

The good: The affordable Panasonic TC-PST50 series exhibited outstanding overall picture quality, characterized by exceedingly deep black levels with great shadow detail, accurate colors, and solid bright-room performance. Unlike LCDs, as a plasma it has superb off-angle and uniformity characteristics. The styling is attractive and the feature set well-chosen, including excellent onscreen help options.

The bad: The ST50 uses more power than competing LCD TVs, and doesn't perform as well in bright rooms as those with matte screens. It doesn't come with 3D glasses, and it showed more crosstalk in 3D than some competing TVs. The ST50 is only available in 50-inch and larger sizes. Three HDMI inputs is one fewer than most midrange TVs offer.

The bottom line: With flagship-level picture quality for a midlevel price, the Panasonic ST50 series sets the value standard among videophile-grade TVs.
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