Official Pioneer 4360/5060/Elite Experiences, Set-up, Questions & Pictures Thread!!! - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 5600 Old 09-18-2005, 12:25 PM - Thread Starter
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OK, I actually have the 5061 in my possession, now up and running. Some initial impressions…

As background, I previously had a Fujitsu PDS-5002, which died after 3 ½ years and didn’t seem worth repairing at the estimated $2500. I had a Panasonic for a few weeks before that, which I returned due to a buzzing issue.

I really liked the Fujitsu. The blacks were excellent—same as the Panasonics (not surprisingly, as it’s the same glass in both). The Fujitsu added much better deinterlacing; the Panasonic was quite poor in this area, with lots of combing. I believe later models are better in this regard, but not up to the level of Fujitsus. What I didn’t like about the Fujitsu was fan noise, which I partially quelled by lining the back cover with Dynamat, replacing the four fans with quieter models, and placing acoustic foam behind the unit. This problem has been addressed with current Fujitsus, which are much quieter. In terms of picture quality, the only complaint I had was occasional false contouring.

OK, now on to the Pioneer. First, some unpacking notes. The box included not only a table top stand, but also a wall mount, which I don’t need. (My understanding is that this is only true of the Best Buy models). The stand at first seemed to be lightweight plastic, but there are heavy metal supports which go inside it. The stand was labeled as made in Japan, the media box in Malaysia, and the plasma panel itself, interestingly, was assembled in the USA with Japan and USA components. The bezel around the screen is thinner than on previous Pioneers, but I believe still a bit thicker than the Fujitsu’s. A nice touch was the inclusion of a screen cleaning cloth.

I have the media box connected to an HD-TiVo by component (I have an HDMI cable on order, but from what I’ve read, the expected improvement is somewhere between slight and imperceptible), an SD DirecTV TiVo via S-video, and a Panasonic RP-91 DVD player via component. In addition to satellite, the HD-TiVo is also connected to a rooftop antenna for over-the-air HDTV. Finally, I have an RCN digital cable box connected via S-video. (I don’t use cable much, but it’s included in my condo fee, so I can’t get rid of it.)

When I first turned it on, it was really bright, with oversaturated colors. Torch mode, I guess. The black level was also quite high—kind of a medium gray. I didn’t panic, knowing it needed some adjustment. I first turned off the default “dynamic” mode, and then I briefly did some calibration using the Video Essentials DVD (the older version).

With this done, I re-examined the black level. The Fujitsu, although it had a silver frame, had a strip of black glass around the image, and I was always aware of some difference between that black and the black on the screen. That is, black on screen was a somewhat grayer. Well, with the Pioneer, that difference (compared to the black bezel) seems about the same. That is, the black level on the Pioneer appears equal to that on the Fujitsu. At first, I even though it was better, but I’m not as sure now. Still, looking at black objects onscreen, I think the word “inky” can reasonably be applied. I certainly wouldn’t expect any complaints in real-world viewing.

An additional test I’d like to try out when it’s dark out tonight is to look at the Pioneer with the screen blanked. I have a hack on the TiVo to blank the screen when paused for more than 30 seconds (to decrease burn-in), so I’m very used to seeing how much light the Fujitsu put out when displaying nothing (i.e., black) in a darkened room. I think that’s a slightly less subjective way to interpret black level. I’ll let you know how it goes.

After calibration, I watched some of the test materials on Video Essentials. Even with the good black level, I could see somewhat more detail in the dark areas, and I did not see any false contouring in these areas (which was where it was most visible on the Fujitsu). The deinterlacing (which I checked with the DVD player set to interlaced output) was excellent.

I then changed over to HD, watching the Bears-Lions game. The image was certainly crisp and detailed. The colors certainly do have some pop to them. I haven’t quite decided whether they pop too much—i.e., are they lifelike. The color rendition is somewhat different than on the Fujitsu, and at least initially, I felt the Fujitsu was more lifelike. With a bit more viewing time, though, I started to get used to the Pioneer’s colors, and they started to seem quite pleasing.

I should remember to mention the issue of noise. There really isn’t any. If I put my ear up to the plasma, there’s a whisper of a buzz, and if I get close to the media box, there’s a very slight fan noise. Both are imperceptible from a few feet away, and are much less than the hard drives in my TiVos.

Overall, I’m very pleased. The picture quality is outstanding, in terms of black level, detail, color, and deinterlacing of SD material. The unit looks great, and it’s very quiet. I’ll leave it at that for now, so that I can finish watching the Bears lose.

--Eric
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post #2 of 5600 Old 09-18-2005, 12:30 PM - Thread Starter
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To add a few points:

-Before anyone asks for pictures, I have to admit I'm the last person on the planet who doesn't own a digital camera.

-I just saw some graded dark backgrounds which I know would have caused false contouring on the Fujitsu, and there was absolutely none on the Pioneer, just a smooth, perfect transition.

-The black level of screen elements--TiVo menus, scoreboard background, etc.--is really outstanding. At least as good as on the Fujitsu (and by extension, Panasonics).

-The Bears are actually winning, at least so far.

--Eric
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post #3 of 5600 Old 09-18-2005, 12:40 PM
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Eelton,

Thanks for your early review. You sound restrained in your assessment. Reads like the panel has a solid, quality PQ, perhaps on par with the best today, but nothing dramatically ahead. Is that a fair reflection?

A couple of questions:

1- Is the stand that comes with the 5060 swivel or no?
2- Did Pio add the ability to rename inputs (eg, from "Input 1" to "Cable")?
3- How is the performance with motion? Any detection of lags when something moves across the screen, particularly diagonally, at moderate speed?
4- A big favor! What is the height measurement of the inner box the panel comes in. That will determine if I can pick mine up in my Escape or will need delivery.

Thanks!

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. . . . . . . . . . . Peter

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post #4 of 5600 Old 09-18-2005, 12:46 PM
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Eelton,

Another thought. In my experience, plasmas tend to improve in PQ after the first 10-20 hours of use. Don't ask me how or even if that is real or just subjective perception after getting used to a new set.

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. . . . . . . . . . . Peter

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post #5 of 5600 Old 09-18-2005, 12:55 PM
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I'm drooling now. Seems as if Pioneer came through with the 6Gs ( I knew they would ). Deep blacks, rich colors, excellent design.... what more can one want?
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post #6 of 5600 Old 09-18-2005, 12:57 PM - Thread Starter
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Peter--

I was trying to avoid gushing or losing objectivity, but I think the Pioneer is overall better than the current Panasonics--black level at least as good, great colors (I'm pretty much used to the "popping" colors at this point), better detail in dark areas, and better deinterlacing. At this point, I can't really point to anything that needs improvement--or really that could be improved.


To answer your questions:

-The stand doesn't swivel. It's the same as the one in the bochures--a flat silver stand.

-From what I can tell from reading the manual, you can't rename inputs.

-I haven't seen any artifacts with motion. The noise reduction came set to "mid" as the default. I've since turned it off based on others' suggestions, although I didn't notice any artifact with it on. I'll have to experiment more.

-The inner box is about 53 by 35 by 14.5 inches. I can't say anything about the outer box which holds everything (media box, stand, wall mount, speakers, and the plasma box ), as I asked the delivery people to take that away.

--Eric
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post #7 of 5600 Old 09-18-2005, 01:02 PM
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Peter, you may be able to squeeze the inner box and separate MR/stand boxes in your Ford Escape. If you want to keep the outer box....as yoda would say "Delivery you will need".
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post #8 of 5600 Old 09-18-2005, 01:14 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by D-Nice View Post

Peter, you may be able to squeeze the inner box and separate MR/stand boxes in your Ford Escape. If you want to keep the outer box....as yoda would say "Delivery you will need".

Thanks Eelton, for the measurements. 35" high is the critical measurement for fitting the largest box.

D-Nice.... I think it is too close to risk. 35" is an inch or two to big to fit in the back hatch. I could put the back of the back seats up with the bottom of the back seats forward and put it in through the rear side door. I would make the height ok that way, but then I measure exactly 53" across. I don't want to go through all that at the store and not be able to fit it. I could borrow a friend's minivan, but I think it will be worth arranging delivery. I'm a bit concerned about BB's policy on returning a broken (not defective) panel if I transport it home myself and it was already cracked. If they deliver and it is broken in the box, it'll be on them. I suppose I could open it up at the store to check first, but it's looking like too much of a hassle.

BTW, the outer box can collapse flat and go on top of everything else, if I did go that way. At least that worked with the 43".

And, according to Yoda at least, whether or not I pick up the plasma myself, I will still need delivery (especially after returning my 4312 to Costco).

.
. . . . . . . . . . . Peter

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post #9 of 5600 Old 09-18-2005, 01:34 PM
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I looked at one of the 5061 at the local BB yesterday afternoon and just stopped by again this morning and they do look good. They have the new Panny there also and it's possible to see them both at the same time but comparison is not the best because the panny is on the end of an isle with brighter lighting while the Pio is in an isle with more subdued lighting. Even so, based on store settings and zero tweaking I would hazard to say that the Pio looked at least on par with the Panny on overall black levels while still retaining very good shadow detail. With the canned feeds running on both sets it's almost pointless to evaluate overall PQ but the Pio did look to perhaps have a bit less scaling noise. It would be very interesting to see them both side by side, dialed in and fed the same sources.


ron
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post #10 of 5600 Old 09-18-2005, 01:53 PM
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Are there any differences in the wall mounts? Want to make sure I get a tilting mount that will fit properly.

Does the new 6G mount any differently from the 5G? Will the same mounts work?
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post #11 of 5600 Old 09-18-2005, 02:04 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by eelton View Post

I was trying to avoid gushing or losing objectivity, but I think the Pioneer is overall better than the current Panasonics--black level at least as good, great colors (I'm pretty much used to the "popping" colors at this point), better detail in dark areas, and better deinterlacing. At this point, I can't really point to anything that needs improvement--or really that could be improved.

I appreciate your restraint. It's hard to accept reviews that are all "wow" and "the best".

With my Pio, I had to dial down the color level to -5 or more to have it look natural. Many others have said the same, at least with the 4 and 5 Gens.

Quote:


-The stand doesn't swivel. It's the same as the one in the bochures--a flat silver stand.

This is the only "downgrade" that I can detect with the new series. The 5050 had a very heavy swivel base. From the pics, it looks like the elite 1130 retains it.[/quote]

Quote:


-From what I can tell from reading the manual, you can't rename inputs.

Yes... I wasn't too hopeful about this. Not a huge deal, but it would be nice.

Quote:


-I haven't seen any artifacts with motion. The noise reduction came set to "mid" as the default. I've since turned it off based on others' suggestions, although I didn't notice any artifact with it on. I'll have to experiment more.

I have experienced some motion artifacts with my 4G and some have complained about it in the 5Gs. Many others have said they don't see any. It is subtle, and not a deal killer anyway, but if the 6G improves that at all it would be great.

.
. . . . . . . . . . . Peter

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post #12 of 5600 Old 09-18-2005, 02:07 PM
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Since we are underway with the real thing, I wonder if this should become the "Official Pioneer 6th Generation Plasma Thread." With Eelton's review and all the follow-up, it would be a shame to lose it with the start of a new thread. If Eelton agrees, perhaps a mod could change the thread title.

.
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post #13 of 5600 Old 09-18-2005, 02:11 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:


With my Pio, I had to dial down the color level to -5 or more to have it look natural. Many others have said the same, at least with the 4 and 5 Gens.

It does look better to me when I do that. What confused me is that when I make the adjustments to color and tint using the blue filter and Video Essentials, I end up with color at +10 (and tint at +4). I have HD test patterns recorded on the HD-TiVo from HDNet, and I end up with the same result.

I have to go with my eye, though, and decrease the color.

--Eric
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post #14 of 5600 Old 09-18-2005, 02:35 PM
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For the first quick review. Sounds very encouraging. Blacks are blacker and retain detail. Colors still pop. Can't wait for my Pio to arrive. Happy days are just around the corner.
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post #15 of 5600 Old 09-18-2005, 02:57 PM
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Since nobody asked yet, what exactly is the "4060" model that is mentioned in the thread title? Did the 4360s shrink while crossing the Pacific Ocean?
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post #16 of 5600 Old 09-18-2005, 03:00 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mooneydriver View Post

Since nobody asked yet, what exactly is the "4060" model that is mentioned in the thread title? Did the 4360s shrink while crossing the Pacific Ocean?

Typo on my part.

I am unable to correct it.

It should have read "4360".

I tried!

Dave

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post #17 of 5600 Old 09-18-2005, 03:06 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by eelton View Post

It does look better to me when I do that. What confused me is that when I make the adjustments to color and tint using the blue filter and Video Essentials, I end up with color at +10 (and tint at +4). I have HD test patterns recorded on the HD-TiVo from HDNet, and I end up with the same result.

I have to go with my eye, though, and decrease the color.

I adjusted the color on my new 5050 to -10. The 5060 must be much different out of the box to set it to +10, or the color must be oozing out of your panel.

I want a Masquerade.
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post #18 of 5600 Old 09-18-2005, 03:06 PM
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Best Buy (Northern Boulevard/ 50th St - in front of Home Depot - Queens / NY) got both Models on Display. All I can say is Wow!!! The blacks on the 50" Model looks very impressive with HD feed.
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post #19 of 5600 Old 09-18-2005, 03:07 PM
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Ok, where are those guys who complained about motion judder with 5G (and older) Pios? Can you please retest with 6G and let us know about your results? Thanks very much!
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post #20 of 5600 Old 09-18-2005, 03:26 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by eelton View Post

Peter--


-The stand doesn't swivel. It's the same as the one in the bochures--a flat silver stand.

.

Too bad. I really like the swivel stand. I was even hoping Pio would offer a motorized remote control version. I guess Pio is looking to cut costs - and most folks will end up wall mounting.

I want a Masquerade.
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post #21 of 5600 Old 09-18-2005, 03:32 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cheridave View Post

Typo on my part.

I am unable to correct it.

It should have read "4360".

I tried!

Dave

Would you like someone to create a new thread and just merge this one with the new one?
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post #22 of 5600 Old 09-18-2005, 03:46 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mit07 View Post

I adjusted the color on my new 5050 to -10. The 5060 must be much different out of the box to set it to +10, or the color must be oozing out of your panel.

The +10 really only applies to the DVD player, the settings for which I calibrated using Video Essentials. Looking again at the HDNet test patterns, they really aren't the right type to guide color adjustments, and I have the color turned down to zero on that input.

A lot of this reflects differences between sources. I've also found that I have to turn the brightness down for the SD TiVo, or the blacks are much lighter than with other sources.

--Eric
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post #23 of 5600 Old 09-18-2005, 03:56 PM
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Eelton,

Thanks very much for the review. Have you had a chance to watch it with a high degree of ambient light? I saw the pios at CEDIA and thought they were by far the best plasmas on display. I'll be doing most of my watching in low light, but I'm wondering how good these are in bright light. My living room has windows without shades (don't ask), and I've read (confirmed by the Pioneer-sponsored study of plasmas) that plasmas are inferior (can't be truly appreciated) in bright ambient light conditions relative to lcds and rear projection MDs, which are far brighter.
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post #24 of 5600 Old 09-18-2005, 04:11 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by movie buff View Post

Eelton,

Thanks very much for the review. Have you had a chance to watch it with a high degree of ambient light? I saw the pios at CEDIA and thought they were by far the best plasmas on display. I'll be doing most of my watching in low light, but I'm wondering how good these are in bright light. My living room has windows without shades (don't ask), and I've read (confirmed by the Pioneer-sponsored study of plasmas) that plasmas are inferior (can't be truly appreciated) in bright ambient light conditions relative to lcds and rear projection MDs, which are far brighter.

It was reasonably bright in my living room this afternoon. The image does suffer, of course, but it was still very good. Now, I'm not talking about direct sunlight on the plasma, which really washes things out. At any rate, the Pioneer is brighter than the Fujitsu I had previously, and is therefore better able to cope with ambient light.

--Eric
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post #25 of 5600 Old 09-18-2005, 05:19 PM
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Madshi - I am the motion judder guy on the 5G observation. As soon as they set the first 6G up in Canada I'll take a look see. But sounds like the panel buzz, black issue, noisy media box have all been taken careof. With the typical Pio vibrant colors and what I now understand is improved scaling sounds like Pio hit the nail on the head , and this is with the base consumer version, cant wait to see the Elite.
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post #26 of 5600 Old 09-18-2005, 05:32 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Trunorth View Post

With the typical Pio vibrant colors and what I now understand is improved scaling sounds like Pio hit the nail on the head , and this is with the base consumer version, cant wait to see the Elite.

Trunorth - is there any reason to believe that the Elite PQ will be better than 5060, and if so, what is it?
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post #27 of 5600 Old 09-18-2005, 05:36 PM
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Can you tell me the width of the speakers? I have a 47.50 wide cabinet and the 4360 is 42.40 wide without the speakers attached.
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post #28 of 5600 Old 09-18-2005, 05:40 PM
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Eelton,

Thanks for that insight. One more quick question. How do SD channels look from either directv or cable? does the stretch mode degrade the picture any?
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post #29 of 5600 Old 09-18-2005, 05:56 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by D-Nice View Post

Would you like someone to create a new thread and just merge this one with the new one?


Good idea.

Eelton should bail out Dave ( ), start a new thread, and the threads should be merged with a correct title.

4060 is misleading, particularly to newbies.
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post #30 of 5600 Old 09-18-2005, 06:21 PM
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Wojtek - I am advised there is improved video processing in the 6GElite model. This info. provided by owner of our local high end AV shop yesterday. I have not confirmed same relative to any official specs or stats but believe it to be good info.. The current Elite vs consumer version has similar step up in video processing. Lets just say there will have to be material PQ improvement to justify the C$2K/$3K difference in price at MSRP here in the Great White North. In Canada the 4360 MSRP is basically $5K vs $7K for the Pro930. On the 5060 you're at $7K vs $10K on the Pro1130. I am advised that the PQ is better but not by a huge amount by the same AV owner who saw them at CEDIA. Seems to me you have two issues here one price/PQ comparison against Pannies and two competition between models within the same brand. While we're on MSRP, the Sony SXRD MSRP at BB in Canada are listed at $5K for the 50XBR and $6,500 for the 60XBR. Aint competition great !
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