PANASONIC 65" 1080p PLASMA (TH-65PX600U) Owners Thread - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 743 Old 10-05-2006, 02:03 PM - Thread Starter
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Since I will be getting a TH-65PX600U in a few days and since there are already a few owners, I think it is time for an owners thread.

Other threads of interest are First impressions and info and pictures.

As usual, no price talk.

My Magnolia rep did some checking and I will be also getting the Sanus VMPL3 tilt mount (really just wanted flat) with the VMXA1 extension needed for this plasma.
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post #2 of 743 Old 10-05-2006, 03:45 PM
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Also expecting in the next few days.
The Panasonic rep recommended the Peerless ST680 tilt mount.
Things a monster.
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post #3 of 743 Old 10-05-2006, 09:48 PM
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My set is coming this Saturday.

After receiving an e-mail from Panasonic that the commercial pedestal stand will work with the consumer set (and a Tweeter and a Magnolia salesman thinking the same thing), I purchased a commercial stand from a local vendor who sold it at the dealer's cost price. (Much less than the price of Panasonic's MSRP of $1199 for the consumer stand.)

For those that are going with a table stand instead of wall mounting this route might prove to be a good alternative if you want to spend less money and prefer more black in your set-up than silver. (Fingers and toes are crossed.)
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post #4 of 743 Old 10-06-2006, 01:17 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Larry Hutchinson View Post

Sanus VMPL3 tilt mount (really just wanted flat) with the VMXA1 extension needed for this plasma.

The new Sanus VMPL3 comes with flat & tilt mount arms !! If your mount does not have both, you got a left over.
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post #5 of 743 Old 10-06-2006, 07:54 AM - Thread Starter
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Don't forget to take pictures, folks. Before and after, unpacking, sample images and stuff like that.

Also, remember that some credit cards will double the 1 year warrantee. I'm having to drag my wife along to Magnolia so we can use her AMEX card since none of my VISAs have that feature.
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post #6 of 743 Old 10-06-2006, 08:29 AM
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Larry I have an AMEX card but don't know anything about this double warranty. Is this for all AMEX accounts?
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post #7 of 743 Old 10-06-2006, 08:45 AM
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Damn, that Panny is going to leave one large gaping hole in your wallet
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post #8 of 743 Old 10-06-2006, 11:13 AM
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Coming real soon now, folks.....finally.

Quote:
Originally Posted by GBFreek View Post

Damn, that Panny is going to leave one large gaping hole in your wallet

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post #9 of 743 Old 10-06-2006, 11:14 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jason30 View Post

Larry I have an AMEX card but don't know anything about this double warranty. Is this for all AMEX accounts?

Looks like it, from my reading of the americanexpress web site.
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post #10 of 743 Old 10-06-2006, 11:35 AM
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I can't seem to find anything about warranty. Can you post a link from americanexpress.com with the details. Thanks
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post #11 of 743 Old 10-06-2006, 12:44 PM
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My Pre-order arrived last Wednesday, I just hav'nt had time to pick it up.

Jason 30, see this link:

https://www124.americanexpress.com/c...tBenefitDetail

This month's new word. The Dopeler Effect: The tendency of stupid ideas to seem smarter when they come at you rapidly .
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post #12 of 743 Old 10-06-2006, 01:08 PM - Thread Starter
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Mine will be delivered Sunday afternoon but it will be a while before I can get it mounted.

Since the studs in my wall are lined up just about right, I am hoping the VMXA1 extension is not really needed with the Sanus VMPL3. Anybody know for sure?
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post #13 of 743 Old 10-06-2006, 01:37 PM
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post #14 of 743 Old 10-06-2006, 01:41 PM
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Thanks Tonypaul
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post #15 of 743 Old 10-07-2006, 09:23 AM - Thread Starter
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Thanks. Chris, for that info.

I ended up tracking down the VMXA1 extension (amazon.com) and should have it in a few days.

BTW, one of the first things I intend on doing is verifying 1:1 1080P driven from my Mac Mini running both MacOS and Windows.
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post #16 of 743 Old 10-07-2006, 04:54 PM
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I'm just wondering what kind of walls you guys are mounting these on. Are your walls solid concrete? Or are you attaching the moutns to the 2x4s in the drywall or something?

I'm looking into picking one of these up, but don't know if it is possible to have it installed where I want it.

Thanks
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post #17 of 743 Old 10-08-2006, 02:11 AM
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You know it's going to be an anxiety-ridden day when the delivery guys/installers from Magnolia:

1. Arrive 30 minute early (because they probably were told to "just leave" from their previous installation.
2. Decide it's a smarter move to unbox and take off all protective wrappings from your set in the middle of the street.
3. Wear no sort of gloves (insuring they leave several nice sets of fingerprints on your set), but plenty of metal keychains, beltbuckles, and zippers while they try to manhandle your set into the house.
4. Have difficulty attaching the power cable, but refuse to consult the instruction manual.
5. Try to screw down your set to its base without using screwdrivers because they don't have any.
6. Delight in renaming the inputs on the video selection from "DVD to Cable to CD to anything you want," because that's about all they're really good at.

(And, of course, coming with a two man crew so you have to lend a hand so you don't end up with a pile of glass and electronical parts.)

Well, today my set arrived/was delievered/escaped the clutches of the "capable" hands of the Magnolia team.

As others may or may not know, Panasonic wisely chose not to ship pedestal stands with this TV. And then, they wisely chose to leave the optional stands in Japan, so if you wanted to buy a stand at the $1199 list price you couldn't do that either. Well, I elected to try a commercial Panasonic stand for about half the price and also I prefer the black look and...it kind of fits. Due to about an extra 2 and 1/4 inches (which is the silver bottom part of the set--the part where the commercial set ends and magically the consumer set begins), the TV doesn't sit completely down on its posts. And the metal supporting columns which bolt on to the back of the TV only line up at one hole out of three. But the TV sits on the stand heavily and solidly without any fear of toppling over. (And a welder or metal-worker can easily drill in some additional holes in the columns for further stable bolting, so I might go that route.)

On to my first impressions.

Most of the day was spent fiddling around with my DVD players (an Onkyo upconverting SP-1000 and and a RCA HD DVD player) connected to the set. As a point of reference, I'm sitting eight feet back from the set.

The Onkyo had no problem being recognized as an HDMI device, but the RCA wouldn't link up. (Bad cables? Bad HDMI port? Panasonic's attempt to make sure only Blu-Ray players can be used on the set?) I tried switching cables and inputs. Nada. Okay, I'll work with the Onkyo.

I switched from Vivid mode to Standard and popped in "Amercian Splendor" a low budget indie film. Not impressive. Watchable, but nothing to write home about. Next I try "Star Wars: Phantom Menace." I decide to give the THX Optimizer a whirl before starting. The starfield at the beginning--not the greatest blacks, but pretty good for a plasma. Then some scenes aboard some ships. Wow! Incredible! Some shots look like live TV. Looks as good as some HD DVDs I've viewed. Rich H. was right! (Speaking of HD DVD, I switch over to the RCA player.)

Bending the end of the HDMI cable back and forth yields success. Things link up. I put in "The Searchers" HD DVD. Looks great, but it looked great on my old RPTV. Try "American Splendor" on this machine. Still nothing to write home about.

Next I proceed to pull out "Avia" and Video Essentials" and do a little more calibrating on both players.

"Spider-Man 2" on the Onkyo is next. A tad too much red. Not as sharp as "Star Wars." Try it on the RCA. Not too much red, looks pretty good, but needs more calibration.

Next, it's onto the "Serenity" HD DVD on the RCA. Wonderful. Beautiful picture. I tweak it by eye to bring out better blacks and contrast. It's getting there.

I decide to screw around with those picture enchancement "goodies." Leave the picture at "Standard." Color Temp at "Normal." Switch on "C.A.T.S." God, what the hell is that?! Quickly switch it off. Run through them all, but for the most part leave them off. "3:2 pulldown" option? Nice.

(All through my testing this day I play around with the "Overscan" control. On 16:9 material, it works well. On 4:3 films, it needs to be tweaked so it can be used. The bottom of the picture has some "garbage." Maybe the entire picture needs to be lowered. I'll have to go into the service menu and see what I can do in the coming days.)

Final film for the night, a black and white classic "How Green Was My Valley" upconverted on the Onkyo. Beautiful. A little more tweaking on the Picture and and Brightness controls and it really shines. Everyone is talking about how great the Toshiba/RCA players upconvert SD DVDs, but the Toshiba is no slouch and I actually prefer it as my upconverting player. (Luckily, TH-65PX600u has two HDMI ports on the back.) I flip through all the different aspects: Full--looks great-- like the picture was shot in wide-screen/H-Fill--WTF?/Zoom--no thanks/Just--it just doesn't cut it; Full does the job so much better/4:3--a prefer totally black sidebars so I'll have use this sparingly until the set is broken in.

I "played" around with almost all the settings today, but I don't want to turn this into a book. Lots to tweak and play with so getting the right combination for some stunning viewing should be achievable. And no eye fatigue after a sleepless night the night before and looking at the TV most of the day. I've ready to watch more and more.

Where to go from here? See what the people are saying about the new commercial 65 inch Panny. If it's demonstratively better, I'll probably switch over since I've already got the stand. I'm not much of TV guy. More of a film freak, so that set might suit me better. Buying this set was cheaper for me and came with a 30 day "no hassle" return policy.

And finally, yeah, I did tip the installation guys twenty bucks when they left. I figured that they might just invest the money in some Home Theater magazines and get a better clue about their jobs.
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post #18 of 743 Old 10-08-2006, 08:13 AM - Thread Starter
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Franchot: My Magnolia guys arrive this afternoon. Thanks for the warning.

agent009: In my case, I will be mounting to the studs behind a wood panel wall. I had a devil of a time finding the studs as my stud finder was useless on this wall (but worked fine on other drywall types.)

I ended up having to transfer measurements on the outside of the house to the inside and then drill a number of tiny test holes. I used a piece of wire to gauge if I had hit the stud or not.
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post #19 of 743 Old 10-08-2006, 08:40 AM
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Franchot, great review but a bit scary reading about the genius installers. Do you have a source for broadcast HD like cable or sat?
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post #20 of 743 Old 10-08-2006, 09:01 AM
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Great Franchot. Let us know how your impressions of this display evolve as you tweak it.

BTW, you mentioned lack of viewing fatigue. I meant to mention that as well. Since I often view in complete darkness I was a little worried that 65" of plasma may up the viewing fatigue factor in the dark. I'd always been comfortable viewing the previous 65" plasma in dim lighting, but this was the first time I could do completely lights out. Happily, I found no increase in viewing fatigue while watching the new Panasonic 65 (for about 2 hours) under such conditions. The cinema
mode was particularly soothing to watch.
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post #21 of 743 Old 10-08-2006, 11:49 AM
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Franchot thanks for sharing. My take based on your comments is great set but not exceptional ? Be curious to get your thoughts on cable source SD/HD etc..
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post #22 of 743 Old 10-08-2006, 11:52 AM
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I would not have tipped those delivery men. Tips are for when workers make you happy and give you what you want.....

Bobby
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post #23 of 743 Old 10-08-2006, 01:29 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bobbykansara View Post

I would not have tipped those delivery men. Tips are for when workers make you happy and give you what you want.....

Well, I was happy that they brought me the set and they did give it to me. Honestly, the tip was nominal in my eyes for guys who aren't professional installers, but Magnolia delivery men. They were courteous and polite, and they probably deal with many brands and configurations, so I can't blame them for not knowing everything. Just as long as the set was delivered and up on its stand without any damage, I was happy. I can (and prefer) to take it from there. (I enjoy the experience of running through the set-ups and configuring everything myself.) Had they done more, I would have probably felt obligated to tip more.

Quote:


Be curious to get your thoughts on cable source SD/HD etc..

I won't be doing any SD or HD cable or satellite for the set for some time. Maybe never. (I have other TVs for those.) You'll have to ask other people who are getting the set about those questions. This is strictly a movie TV for me. (I did hook up an external antenna to see what channels I could pick up. Nothing. I'm up in the hills and I can't get anything without a satelite dish or cable. The TV Guide stuff looked cool though, as did the channel reception strength indicator screen.
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post #24 of 743 Old 10-08-2006, 02:35 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bobbykansara View Post

I would not have tipped those delivery men. Tips are for when workers make you happy and give you what you want.....

It was $20, practically inconsequential realtive to the plasma's price.
Remember that people on the sites are very picky, but generally not jerks.
I mean you would have to be a jerk to have $20 superglued in your pocket.

This bloody Redcoat said I was a terrorist.

Somewhere along the way I become an Elitist who looks down on the
cheap bastards who call themselves my AV Hobbyist peers.
I am not prepared.
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post #25 of 743 Old 10-08-2006, 03:02 PM
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Quote:


I did hook up an external antenna to see what channels I could pick up. Nothing. I'm up in the hills and I can't get anything without a satelite dish or cable.

You live in Signal Hill and can't get a signal because of the hills? Oh, the irony. :|
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post #26 of 743 Old 10-08-2006, 03:12 PM - Thread Starter
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It's here!

Unfortunately, until I get the mounting extension and move it to its final position, I won't be able to view video.

But as, shown below, I did connect to my Mac Mini.

Here is the delivery:



And here it is leaning up against a wall connected to my Mac Mini running Windows XP:



Didn't even take off all the packing just in case it did not pass the test. It did.

You can click here for the full size image. (It looks a lot better in person than in that photo.)

To get 1920x1080 on Windows I had to enable unsupported modes but running Mac OS, if was just there in the list.

I'll have more comments later.
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post #27 of 743 Old 10-08-2006, 03:24 PM
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Man after all this time waiting for this display I can't believe we finally have an "owners" thread.
Keep the reports coming! Let us know if these things will accept native rate/pixel-to-pixel signals too.
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post #28 of 743 Old 10-08-2006, 03:36 PM
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Here are three shots to illustrate the glare on the screen. I have some plantation shutters in the room with curtains over them for daytime viewing. I removed a couple of curtains. The movie is "Sleepy Hollow" in HD DVD. One with a camera flash. One without flash. One with no flash or movie. It's a sunny day.

If you want more pics, let me know.
LL
LL
LL
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post #29 of 743 Old 10-08-2006, 04:00 PM
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Quote:


You live in Signal Hill and can't get a signal because of the hills? Oh, the irony. :|

You're suppose to look at the lovely hills and not TV. If you know the history of this town, the hills were once lined with oil derricks and very few people lived here. With the housing crunch in Southern California, it's now just the opposite.

One more shot. If you can't control your outside lighting and you're bothered by glare, better keep looking for that dream TV. Otherwise, the images in a darkened room are truly wonderful and look to get better as the tweaking continues. Can't wait for tonight..."Dazed & Confused" "Land Of The Dead" or "The Adventures Of Robin Hood" in HD DVD. Tuesday--"Batman Begins"
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post #30 of 743 Old 10-08-2006, 04:15 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by R Harkness View Post

Man after all this time waiting for this display I can't believe we finally have an "owners" thread.
Keep the reports coming! Let us know if these things will accept native rate/pixel-to-pixel signals too.

That's what my connection to the Mac Mini shows. (Perhaps you posted at the same time as mine.)

BTW, the desktop looks much better (but dim) in cinema mode and good (but not as good) in standard.

Also, here is one thing I had been wondering about: the distance between mouning points is about 42.5 inches. And while I am at it, the box it came in is 66x47x22 inches.
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