1. The "Model" you have.
Panasonic TH-42PD25/U (ED model)2. What convinced you to purchase this particular "Model".
a) Outstanding picture, confirmed by great reviews, here and elsewhere.
b) Complete, deluxe feature set, including ATSC tuner, PIP, Cable Card, HDMI, front inputs, Auto picture mode, and more.
c) Excellent price from local B&M with great customer support.
After a year and a half of research, choice narrowed to this and the Sony KE42M1. In the end, PQ seemed equal, but Panasonic's extra features and lower price won the day.3. What you like best about your Plasma.
a) Picture quality, which is absolutely stunning on the best HD input (I still haven't gotten over how great the Super Bowl looked, and Cubs/Sox games are gorgeous).
b) PIP. I had never had it before, but now I'm addicted.
c) Auto mode. My room varies from extraordinarily bright in the day to much darker than normal at night. The set adjusts beautifully.4. What you don't like about your Plasma.
a) Loss of detail in shadow areas.
b) Uneven black on external inputs.
c) Styling. It's not bad, but I like many other plasmas better.5. What "Feature(s)" you wish your Plasma had.
a) Detachable speakers. I don't use the built-in ones and would prefer a more compact cabinet.
b) Learning remote that integrated better with DirecTV and could turn entire HT system on or off with one button.
c) Additional HDMI inputs.
d) Separate memory for each input.
e) Direct input selection via the remote.
The latter three are minimal problems for me at this point, as I run external sources through an iScan Ultra, but will become more important when I ultimately add HDMI devices that don't go through the processor.6. What advice or suggestion would you make to the "Manufacturer" about your Plasma.
Return a full featured ED set to the line. It shouldn't be necessary to have to move up two steps in the HD line to get things like PIP, etc. ED is all some people want or need. I love the fact that my set feels like a luxury unit, not one that has been stripped of features, even though it was at the low end of the plasma price spectrum.7. What was your biggest "Surprise" after you received your Plasma.
a) Crystal clear HD OTA pictures from my 40 year old rooftop antenna through my built-in ATSC tuner in an area where analog pictures are unwatchable due to multipath.
b) My best picture (confirmed by DVE) came using factory settings (Standard or Auto). I spent a month trying everyone's recommendations and was never quite satisfied. After the first 100 hours, I decided to recalibrate, and tried the factory settings (which I never had before!
). They gave me colors that were nearly perfect, except for green (which looks fine, even if it doesn't test perfectly).8. What "Problems or Issues" have you had with your Plasma.
a) Loss of shadow detail in dimly lit HD scenes.
b) Uneven blacks. To correct this, I darken the output from my DVD player, but that leads back to the same loss of shadow detail I have in HD.9. Do you really think that todays "Prices" are worth it.
I wouldn't have bought one if I didn't think they were. Today's prices are even better, of course, than what I paid at Christmas time. This purchase was a stretch for me, but I haven't regretted it for a minute.10. Any additional information that you want to add is encouraged.
a) My PQ is excellent to good from all sources (OTA HD, DVD, Laserdisc, DirecTV SD, and videotape) although my iScan Ultra deserves part of the credit.
b) Now that I'm past the first 100 hours, I tend to watch SD in 4:3, not because the distorted shape bothers me, but because it looks sharper to my eye. For the most part, it looks as good as it does on my 32 Sony CRT.
c) I've had my Plasma for five months, and still get a thrill out of it every time I see it, on or off.
Even though prices continue to tumble, I'm not sorry I didn't wait any longer.