Plasma noob: Panasonic ST50 has two weird things, is this normal? - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 17 Old 11-29-2012, 07:09 PM - Thread Starter
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I just got a new ST50 and there are two things going on that I'm not in love with. Thing is, this is my first plasma so I have no idea if this is to be expected or not.
To make things even more difficult, I don't know how to explain what is going on - I guess I don't know the tech terms - so I created two Photoshop comps to illustrate the problem. Here we go.

1. When I'm close to the TV, let's say 3 feet, I see some weird granulation on the screen. It's like a 64 or 32 colors .GIF image, the transition between colors is not smooth. See the picture attached, where I split the "screen" in two. On the left is what I would normally expect. On the right is what I get from my brand new plasma.
Immediately after I saw this problem, I drove to a nearby Frys and I looked at other TVs. No LED or LCD exhibited the same thing. Unfortunately they had only a couples of plasmas and they all had the same problem - granted, not as much as my Panny.
I saw an LG right next to a ST50 and while both had the granulation thing, clearly the ST50 was worse.
This got me thinking this might be a plasma thing, but here I am, hoping for an answer from people smarter and more experienced than me.

2. When I have a colored background and some white shape over it, some strange horizontal bands appear, spanning the whole width of the screen. They are very dim, but I have very good vision. See the second pictured attached, with the green background.
I saw this when before a trailer you get the rating screen, with dark green background and white letters. I see fade, white stripes running the width of the screen, one at the bottom of the letters and one at the top.

I'm pretty bummed. I bought this TV because the consistent great reviews. I hope this unit is bad and the two "traits" I just described are not a plasma characteristic.

Please chip in, and thanks in advance.

granulation.jpg 314k .jpg file

ghosting.jpg 12k .jpg file
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post #2 of 17 Old 11-29-2012, 07:56 PM
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Usually a calibration will get rid of these anomalies?
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post #3 of 17 Old 11-29-2012, 07:59 PM - Thread Starter
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Calibration like the famous D-Nice settings? Or is there something else? A link will be greatly appreciated.
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post #4 of 17 Old 11-29-2012, 08:10 PM
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The ST50 was highly rated by almost everyone. Calibrate and then see how it is and if it still doesn't work, exchange the set for another. LED wont touch plasma so hopefully it gets figured out. I ordered the 60U50 and if it isnt up to my par then I will get the 55ST50.
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post #5 of 17 Old 11-29-2012, 08:17 PM
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Second photo is a classic example of Line Bleed -

http://www.tweakguides.com/HDTV_10.html:
Quote:
Plasmas also suffer to varying degrees from an issue known as Line Bleed, a term used to describe an effect whereby a ghostly shadow-like extension of a bright image can be seen. The most common example is when an image with bright horizontal lines, such as window blinds, or the lines on the TV's built-in menus, can be seen extending beyond the boundaries of their original area. This occurs on plasmas because the power is not evenly distributed along a row or column of phosphor cells, and thus can affect nearby cells. Line bleed is an inherent part of plasma technology and is not considered a fault unless severe.

Unless you routinely view dark slides with white blocks in the center, would not worry about it.
Once you give your set a proper Picture Adjustment (or a real Calibration, if so inclined), this effect should rarely show up in normal programming.
Only time we see it on our 60ST50 is during the Rating Guide at the beginning of DVDs, and SOME End Credits - and it is pleasingly subdued even then.

Difficult to clearly see the glitch in your first photo, but what appears to be going in - and what your description hints at - is Posterization, or False Contouring. You will find these discussed at the same site as referenced above (and elsewhere as well).

This is a problem on our ST50 only with Less-Than-True-HD material.
A bit of viewing demonstrates that the False Contouring still shows up on our two older, but smaller, plasma sets, given the same source - however, the larger panel simply does a "better job" of revealing the Glitch....

Very impressed with the ST50 we have - hope you are able to enjoy yours as much....

PS: Download a copy of the AVS HD709 disk - has several very helpful videos on picture adjustments, along with a number of useful slides (and instructions) to accomplish the task.
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post #6 of 17 Old 11-29-2012, 09:09 PM - Thread Starter
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Thank you sir for your response. Well, I guess I won't be sending it back after all. Funny, I don't remember seeing the line bleed problem in the plasma cons when compared to LCD/LED.
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post #7 of 17 Old 11-30-2012, 05:30 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by metrathon View Post

..... Funny, I don't remember seeing the line bleed problem in the plasma cons when compared to LCD/LED.

Probably because it is not as prevalent as it was at one time. Again, we rarely see it on any of our 3 Panasonic sets, and can honestly say I have never been BOTHERED by it during the course of any Normal Program material - on ANY set (and we have a bunch of plasmas in the immediate family!).

Adjusting your panel's picture settings - using one of the "calibration" disks - might also lessen the visual impact, even during Credits or Film Rating displays.
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post #8 of 17 Old 11-30-2012, 06:23 PM - Thread Starter
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Just to clear this one out: the TV it's a keeper. I love it. Nothing and nobody it's perfect (not even me biggrin.gif) and in normal viewing conditions (on the couch, 6 ft away) the quality it's amazing.
The TV is 5 out of 5.

Thank you for your help. Panasonic and Amazon should send you a commission for making me keep the TV smile.gif
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post #9 of 17 Old 11-30-2012, 09:38 PM
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I have two Panny TC-50PU54's and they occasionally do both of those things but I considered it slightly annoying but the grainy thing did alarm me at first. The granulation I only saw once or twice or maybe 3 times and it did worry me a bit until I realized it wasn't going to be happening all the time, Plus it happens only with certain Blu-Ray transfers. It was the worst on the Blu-Ray for James Cameron's Aliens. In fact it was seen in more than one third of the entire film. Not good. But I was thinking maybe the TV was reveiling such a pure image that is so sensitive that it picked up the original grain from the negative. Wasn't sure. That does exist in some movies no matter how good the transfer is. Check out the begining of The Exorcist, as the Iraq segment fades to Georgetown and the camera pulls in over the bridge toward M street and the rear of the house at 36th and Prospect where the exteriors of the McNeil house were shot, you'll see a good amount of grain in that too. Again not sure if the TV is simply unable to process certain information or f it is picking up on original film grain from the print. One way to know for certain is that if it happens with material shot digitally or more recently then we'd know it's an issue with the TV it's self On the other hand I have not detected it at all in nearly every other Blu-Ray I have watched except maybe one other. I don't see it at all on dvd's, streaming DVR or HDTV though


As far as the ghost lines, I see those too sometimes and figured it was totally normal for plasma. It's very mild and only noticable once in a while, not an issue to me

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post #10 of 17 Old 12-02-2012, 09:10 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by metrathon View Post

Just to clear this one out: the TV it's a keeper. I love it. Nothing and nobody it's perfect (not even me biggrin.gif) and in normal viewing conditions (on the couch, 6 ft away) the quality it's amazing.
The TV is 5 out of 5.
Thank you for your help. Panasonic and Amazon should send you a commission for making me keep the TV smile.gif


Just my two cents, but I never understood why anyone would have to sit less then 6 ft from a set in the first place. If you do, you probably need to go to a a larger screen.



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post #11 of 17 Old 12-02-2012, 09:17 AM - Thread Starter
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Ian, I'm not sitting so close. It's just that when I first powered the TV I was on my knees, right in front of it so I immediately noticed the two issues. Normally I sit ~ 6 ft away and everything it's perfect.

And there's another thing, like I said. I have two desktop computers, with two 24" 1920 x 1200 Samsung monitors and they are perfect, no matter how close you get to the screen. I know that when you stretch the same resolution on a screen double in size, you'll start seeing artifacts but still it took me by surprise.

Very happy with the TV now. I gave it 5 stars on Amazon.
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post #12 of 17 Old 12-02-2012, 09:22 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Natja-ss-1334 View Post

I have two Panny TC-50PU54's and they occasionally do both of those things but I considered it slightly annoying but the grainy thing did alarm me at first. The granulation I only saw once or twice or maybe 3 times and it did worry me a bit until I realized it wasn't going to be happening all the time, Plus it happens only with certain Blu-Ray transfers. It was the worst on the Blu-Ray for James Cameron's Aliens. In fact it was seen in more than one third of the entire film. Not good. But I was thinking maybe the TV was reveiling such a pure image that is so sensitive that it picked up the original grain from the negative. Wasn't sure. That does exist in some movies no matter how good the transfer is. Check out the begining of The Exorcist, as the Iraq segment fades to Georgetown and the camera pulls in over the bridge toward M street and the rear of the house at 36th and Prospect where the exteriors of the McNeil house were shot, you'll see a good amount of grain in that too. Again not sure if the TV is simply unable to process certain information or f it is picking up on original film grain from the print. One way to know for certain is that if it happens with material shot digitally or more recently then we'd know it's an issue with the TV it's self On the other hand I have not detected it at all in nearly every other Blu-Ray I have watched except maybe one other. I don't see it at all on dvd's, streaming DVR or HDTV though
As far as the ghost lines, I see those too sometimes and figured it was totally normal for plasma. It's very mild and only noticable once in a while, not an issue to me

Yes, the granulation is horrible. But thank god it's impossible to see once you're like 4 ft away. They look like dancing pixels, moving constantly even on still images, like the TV ran out of its color palette so the transition from the darkest green (for example) to black is very abrupt. The solution: don't get close biggrin.gif
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post #13 of 17 Old 12-02-2012, 11:21 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by metrathon View Post

Ian, I'm not sitting so close. It's just that when I first powered the TV I was on my knees, right in front of it so I immediately noticed the two issues. Normally I sit ~ 6 ft away and everything it's perfect.
And there's another thing, like I said. I have two desktop computers, with two 24" 1920 x 1200 Samsung monitors and they are perfect, no matter how close you get to the screen. I know that when you stretch the same resolution on a screen double in size, you'll start seeing artifacts but still it took me by surprise.
Very happy with the TV now. I gave it 5 stars on Amazon.


Plasmas will show more artifacts then LCDS, but from what I can see, it looks like your experiencing color banding. What picture mode are you using?



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post #14 of 17 Old 02-23-2013, 03:17 PM
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This is normal. Neoplasma has dithering when viewed reallt close but at normal viewing distances you cannot see this. The line bleed is also normal for plasmas but nit visable during normal content . Only some game menus and graphic images. Caveots of this plasma technology.
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post #15 of 17 Old 02-23-2013, 04:31 PM
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The "granulation" you are referring to sounds like common plasma dithering. You can almost always see this up close.
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post #16 of 17 Old 02-25-2013, 06:42 PM
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Plasmas are like Monets. You want to stand back a little smile.gif
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post #17 of 17 Old 02-25-2013, 07:56 PM
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If you don't notice it with normal viewing distance, then you're fine.

Most people, including me, when they first get plasmas, exhibit OCD tendencies.

Eventually, you'll get it calibrated, whether professionally or you do it yourself, watch some BD's or HD content and say wow.

I still see the dithering when I walk past the display at 3 feet, but I don't watch it at 3 feet. I watch it at 13-15 feet and the blacks are wet and the whites pop.
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