Is my Panasonic TC-P55ST50 old already? - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 12 Old 01-23-2014, 01:30 PM - Thread Starter
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I haven't even owned this TV 2 years yet and already have tv buying fever again! What am I missing out on? How does my panny stack up against current 2014 TV's?
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post #2 of 12 Old 01-23-2014, 01:36 PM
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It's better than most 2014 TVs since it is a Panasonic plasma. Other than a 2013 Panasonic plasma I don't think it is worth replacing an ST50 right now. Keep it and enjoy it until OLED or LED is improved to match plasma picture quality.
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post #3 of 12 Old 01-23-2014, 01:43 PM
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That's a very personal question depending on how much you care about having the latest and greatest vs. saving the money.

I'll put it this way. I currently have a 50PZ85U that I got nearly 6 years (5 years and 8 months) ago. It has 8850 hours on it and is still going strong. I don't think it needs replacing, though clearly the black levels aren't great compared to today's plasma offerings, but still better than a lot of today's LCDs. I just ordered a 60ZT60 as a replacement because Panasonic is going out of business (Samsung F8500 would be my next choice). Do these new sets totally blow my old set out of the water? I'd say they are a solid improvement, but if Panasonic or Samsung were definitely going to keep making plasmas for a few more years, I would have waited. Disclaimer is that I care more about audio quality than video. For me, the 50PZ85U is still adequate, especially if you don't watch in complete darkness.

If I were you, I'd wait 2-3 more years, given that your TV isn't that old. Each year is only an incremental improvement. Who knows, maybe OLED will be cheaper or local dimming LCDs will perform better than your plasma down the road. Agree with The Void 100%.
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post #4 of 12 Old 01-23-2014, 03:27 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by blaket81 View Post

I haven't even owned this TV 2 years yet and already have tv buying fever again! What am I missing out on? How does my panny stack up against current 2014 TV's?

I get the buying a new tv fever, it's why we're members here, we enjoy our tech toys but the other members are right, no need to upgrade if it ain't broken. You have one of the best plasmas ever made. It is sad Panny has ended their plasma lifeline. OLED would be the only upgrade that would be meaningful at this point but they cost an arm and a leg. Get a Darbee if you don't have one, you'll feel like you upgraded too and it won't cost you 3K, just a suggestion.

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post #5 of 12 Old 01-23-2014, 05:46 PM
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I say keep it also till the next big thing is matured. My 55ST50 is perfect. I love this display not a single issue ever.

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post #6 of 12 Old 01-24-2014, 06:59 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by blaket81 View Post

I haven't even owned this TV 2 years yet and already have tv buying fever again! What am I missing out on? How does my panny stack up against current 2014 TV's?

I don't think any of the 2014 TVs will be better than an ST50 (unless you like curved TVs and have a really high budget). The 4K LED LCD TVs look promising, but they still have a lot of the typical LCD issues.

The only TVs that are better than the ST50 are the discontinued ST60/VT60/ZT60 (my 55ST60 looks way better than my 50GT50), and the still-available Sammy F8500 series Plasma which will reportedly continue to be made at least till summer.

I love everything about my GT50 with the sole exception of how soft the picture is on the 2012 models, especially the lack of facial detail compared to my other Plasmas (there are tons of complaints about this softness in the ST50/GT50/VT50 threads) but otherwise it's a solid performer. My GT50 is way softer than my ST60 and my older G10 which are both very crisp.

As Latinoheat pointed out, a Darbee Darblet made a big improvement on my GT50 and improved facial detail to an acceptable level (but it was still lacking).

Here are some posts about the Darbee if you're interested, it may be enough to quench your urge to upgrade to a newer TV.

http://www.avsforum.com/t/1403635/official-panasonic-gt50-series-discussion-thread-no-street-price-talk/3450#post_22345623

http://www.avsforum.com/t/1408338/official-panasonic-vt50-owners-thread/12000#post_23265009

http://www.avsforum.com/t/1399154/darbee-vision-darblet

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post #7 of 12 Old 01-24-2014, 07:25 AM
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Unless there is something you are not happy about with your TV, there really is no point in upgrading. Of course unless you just have the money to spend, then I say sure why not. I always say it comes down to financials. Show me your bank statements and I can offer better advice.

As Randy said, there are better Plasma's out now but I do not think you will be blown away coming from an ST50. If it was an LED, sure.

Now if you were going to go with a better plasma and jump up to a 65", then that is another story. I am all for going bigger and that will probably have the bigger impact overall.

Also, we are talking about 2013 TV's. No 2014 TV's have really been released yet and when they do it will really just be LEDs.
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post #8 of 12 Old 01-24-2014, 10:48 AM
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I had a 55ST50, but upgraded when the 60ST60 was selling for $997 in November. Knowing this was going to be the last year of Panasonic plasmas and only having to pay $100 net for an upgrade (after pricematching, credit card cashback, and selling my old set), it was a no-brainer to me.
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post #9 of 12 Old 01-24-2014, 01:26 PM
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Unless you're going to get a bigger tv there isn't really a point in upgrading.

You're suffering from G.A.S. (Gear acquisition syndrome) and people all over suffer from it. No matter what forum you go to people will post there that have it.Trust me, go to a guitar forum and it's filled with guys consistently debating amps and trying to upgrade, if you go to a camera forum its filled with guys pixel peeping cameras and always looking to upgrade. Same thing here and we all get it. Sometimes we are better off sitting back and just enjoying the tv.
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post #10 of 12 Old 01-24-2014, 05:26 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bubbleboyjones View Post

Unless you're going to get a bigger tv there isn't really a point in upgrading.

You're suffering from G.A.S. (Gear acquisition syndrome) and people all over suffer from it. No matter what forum you go to people will post there that have it.Trust me, go to a guitar forum and it's filled with guys consistently debating amps and trying to upgrade, if you go to a camera forum its filled with guys pixel peeping cameras and always looking to upgrade. Same thing here and we all get it. Sometimes we are better off sitting back and just enjoying the tv.
It also depends on what you are using for a source to your TV, upgrading other than going bigger can't improve programs that are shot soft,dim what have you.

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post #11 of 12 Old 01-24-2014, 06:16 PM
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Originally Posted by tenthplanet View Post

It also depends on what you are using for a source to your TV, upgrading other than going bigger can't improve programs that are shot soft,dim what have you.


Well i was making a general statement. If you have the room, going from a 55ST50 to a 65VT60 for example would likely give you the a lot more wow factor. If you're keeping your current TV size Im not sure any 55" is going to be that great. The safe bet when you already have a great TV is to get both a better panel and a bigger one.
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post #12 of 12 Old 01-24-2014, 09:43 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bubbleboyjones View Post

Well i was making a general statement. If you have the room, going from a 55ST50 to a 65VT60 for example would likely give you the a lot more wow factor. If you're keeping your current TV size Im not sure any 55" is going to be that great. The safe bet when you already have a great TV is to get both a better panel and a bigger one.
I did just that going from a 55UT50 to a 65VT60 last week and totally agree. My UT50 is sitting just a few feet away from my VT60 in my basement until I decide if I sell it or move it somewhere else. When I first hooked it up I didn't notice a huge difference in pq over my UT50. Of course it's not broken in yet and I have definitely noticed the darker black levels on the VT. Funny thing is I hooked my UT50 to the coaxial from my cable with a splitter to compare the HD pq. Last Saturday I had both tvs on the same show and my 12 year old came down and said, that one looks brighter (the UT50). Obviously being brighter doesn't make it a better tv but the UT does still have a great picture. I originally planned to sell my UT50 but I may keep it knowing how good the pq is.

Of course the VT60 is a better overall tv than the UT50 but I think the biggest difference for me was going from 55 to 65 inches. I wasn't planning to upgrade so soon but when Panasonic suddenly decided to get out of the business and knowing I wanted to get a bigger tv at some point I decided to take the plunge. I was thinking about getting a 60 inch ST60 or VT60 but I'm really glad I stepped up to 65 inches. When I got my UT50 last year I was coming from a 50 inch plasma so the size was not that much bigger but the deal from Costco was so good I couldn't pass it up. If you're going to upgrade from the ST50 I would definitely look to go bigger.
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