Need Help Deciding Which Plasma to Get - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 23 Old 02-17-2007, 06:21 PM - Thread Starter
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Alright, so I've been looking at plasma tv's for awhile now and haven't been able to make up my mind on which one to get. I need one that's no less than 40 inches and no more than 45 inches. My viewing distance is about 8 ft. I want a plasma that gives me a better picture than my current Sony PFM-42X1 plasma. I was thinking of going for a Pioneer, but am not sure. Any help would be appreciated...
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post #2 of 23 Old 02-17-2007, 07:35 PM
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Looks like you need a 42 inch as there are no other options that fit your parameters. I would suggest Panasonic or Pioneer. What is your budget?

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post #3 of 23 Old 02-17-2007, 07:36 PM - Thread Starter
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I'm willing to spend up to $4,000
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post #4 of 23 Old 02-17-2007, 08:40 PM
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Plasmas of 40-42" (720p) size are intended for viewing from 8 feet, while LCDs (1080p) are best suited for closer viewing distances. At 8 feet, you should be looking at at a 42" 720p plasma or a 50-55" 1080p LCD. Edited for clarification.

The 50" Pioneer 5070 at around $2500-$2800 is in your price range. You are not going to find a product in the 40-45" size that offers comparable picture quality.
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post #5 of 23 Old 02-17-2007, 10:30 PM
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If you MUST stay within that size, go with the Pio 4270 or 940. Neither will be a problem with your stated budget.
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post #6 of 23 Old 02-17-2007, 10:44 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bfdtv View Post

At 8 feet, you should be looking at something between 50" and 55". Displays of 40-42" size are intended for viewing from 6 feet or less.

Oh come on.....that's only true if you want to experience a movie-theater effect from the front row. A 42" TV is fine for up to 12'....I have mine at 10' and it's fine. 6' is going to be either a tiny room or at the foot of a bed.

No1, take a look at the Philips 42" 9631 w/Ambilight. In your price range, and a nice TV. Panasonic is also fine, and 42" models will be fine for your 1st HDTV. You can go for killer size in a few years with your next model.
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post #7 of 23 Old 02-17-2007, 11:31 PM
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At 12' from a 42" screen, a person with 20/20 vision can only resolve ~480p resolution. To see high-definition at 12', you would need a 63" TV. To resolve 1080 resolution, you would need a 95" screen. The larger you go, the better high-definition looks (to a certain point).

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Originally Posted by PhilipsPhanatic View Post

Oh come on.....that's only true if you want to experience a movie-theater effect from the front row. A 42" TV is fine for up to 12'....I have mine at 10' and it's fine.

Well, we can agree to disagree.

To get the "movie-theater effect," you have to go considerably larger. Many on this forum view 80-120" screens from 8'. AVS has several forums dedicated specifically to that kind of thing. As much as I like larger screens, it is not appropriate for a bedroom in my house.

I have a 42" in my bedroom and it is not fine from 11'. It's fine for highlights on ESPN, or the opening monologue from Leno or Letterman, but I wouldn't want to watch it from 8', let alone 11', as my primary display. Quite frankly, the quality of high-def stinks from that distance.

A 50" from 8' is not BIG for regular use. It's a small to moderate size for a mix of SD and HD, but it's large enough that you can actually see and experience high-def. Moreover, 50" panels exceed the quality of those available in the 42" size.
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post #8 of 23 Old 02-18-2007, 06:39 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bfdtv View Post

At 12' from a 42" screen, a person with 20/20 vision can only resolve ~480p resolution.

I have a 42", and from 12' away I can easily tell the difference between a SD 480 signal and a HD signal.

If you have a generous budget, you might consider an NEC 42xr4a (check forum sponsor.projectorpoint. who carries them). The 42xr4a in my opinion is actually better than the latest model NEC 42xr5 since NEC is ditching their superior 12-bit processor (in the 42xr4) in favor of a lesser 10-bit processor (in the 42xr5) engineered by Pioneer.
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post #9 of 23 Old 02-18-2007, 08:04 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dufusyte View Post

The 42xr4a in my opinion is actually better than the latest model NEC 42xr5 since NEC is ditching their superior 12-bit processor (in the 42xr4) in favor of a lesser 10-bit processor (in the 42xr5) engineered by Pioneer.

The video processor in the old NEC may or may not be better, but there is far more to quality video processing than the "bitness" of the calculation. When it comes to video processing performance, the "bitness" of the calculation is not first, not second, not third, not fourth, not even fifth on the list of attributes thats determine output quality once you exceed 8-bit. Features like per-pixel, motion adaptive deinterlace with 4-5 field processing, a SD/HD multi-directional diagonal filter, automatic cadence detection for both SD and HD signals, and scaling with 1024 taps will have far more of an impact than 12-bit (as opposed to 10-bit) processing.
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post #10 of 23 Old 02-18-2007, 09:38 AM
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What about Sony, are they any good?
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post #11 of 23 Old 02-18-2007, 02:10 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by no1mtsfn View Post

Alright, I need one that's no less than 40 inches and no more than 45 inches.

I second the Pioneer 4270. More accurate color and better processor compared to other 42", displays very good SD's as well.
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post #12 of 23 Old 02-18-2007, 02:24 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SaleenS7TT View Post

What about Sony, are they any good?

Sony doesn't make plasmas now, not sure they ever did.
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post #13 of 23 Old 02-18-2007, 03:54 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PhilipsPhanatic View Post

Sony doesn't make plasmas now, not sure they ever did.

Sony used to make plasmas, but no more, they sank all their resources in the LCD market.
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post #14 of 23 Old 02-18-2007, 05:04 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cybertec View Post

Sony used to make plasmas, but no more, they sank all their resources in the LCD market.

They definitely made use to make them. The plasma I have now is the Sony PFM-42X1.

Will the Pioneer 4270 give me as good a picture as the Sony? They are the same resolution....
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post #15 of 23 Old 02-18-2007, 06:52 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by no1mtsfn View Post

They definitely made use to make them. The plasma I have now is the Sony PFM-42X1.

Will the Pioneer 4270 give me as good a picture as the Sony? They are the same resolution....

Most 42" plasmas use 1024x768 resolution. You have to step up to the 50" size to get a significantly better panel, as I noted above.

The 42" Pioneer would be an improvement over your Sony, but not a substantial one. The Sony was pretty good for its day.
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post #16 of 23 Old 02-18-2007, 06:52 PM
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Another recommendation within your requirements goes to the Pio 4270 but I would advice you to get 5070. It's like another world.
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post #17 of 23 Old 02-18-2007, 07:35 PM - Thread Starter
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Problem with the 50 inch is that it's for my bedroom and i don't think i have enough room for it...
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post #18 of 23 Old 02-18-2007, 07:40 PM
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Pioneer 5070
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post #19 of 23 Old 02-18-2007, 08:05 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by no1mtsfn View Post

Problem with the 50 inch is that it's for my bedroom and i don't think i have enough room for it...

There you go, if you think you have no room for the 5070, 4270 will be your choice, plain and simple.
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post #20 of 23 Old 02-21-2007, 09:39 PM
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I've installed both the Pioneer and NEC 42" sets. I like the Pioneer but I really think the NEC is a better display IMO. You also get a better waranty.
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post #21 of 23 Old 02-23-2007, 07:45 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bfdtv View Post

At 8 feet, you should be looking at something between 50" and 55". Displays of 40-42" size are intended for viewing from 6 feet or less.

Maybe in videophile land, but not real world. I must respectfully disagree with that assessment. I think up to 12-16 feet is just fine with a 40-42."
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post #22 of 23 Old 02-24-2007, 06:44 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by no1mtsfn View Post

Alright, so I've been looking at plasma tv's for awhile now and haven't been able to make up my mind on which one to get. I need one that's no less than 40 inches and no more than 45 inches. My viewing distance is about 8 ft. I want a plasma that gives me a better picture than my current Sony PFM-42X1 plasma. I was thinking of going for a Pioneer, but am not sure. Any help would be appreciated...

For a 42" display, the 2006 NEC that was recommended is definitely the best choice IMO followed by Pioneer Elite as a close second. Everything else is definitely a notch below.

IMO and with my eyesight, 8' is near the edge between 42" and 50". Personally I would prefer the 50" display but I want a wide-angle expereience. Others might be happier with a 42" display. For movies and drama, the 50" to me is preferable. For just "TV", news and casual programs, I guess the 42" serves just fine. Poor SD can actually have some advantages on a smaller screen. As many have said though, screens do seem to shrink once you get them up and live with them for a while. Out of hundreds that have commented, only two or three that I have read complained of too big a screen whereas many have regretted not going a size bigger.

You say the distance is "about 8'". How accurate is that estimate? Have you measured from eyes when seated to plane of screen? Does the distance varry with different seating? Does the seating move? Can you mount on a wall with an articulating arm? These might be some additional consideration when deciding on size.

Cheers,

Gary
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post #23 of 23 Old 02-24-2007, 03:02 PM
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I would go look at a Pioneer Elite 940 - a great panel from 8 feet.

As mentioned previously, a 1080P panel is another matter - you would need to go with a 50.

We have a Pio 920 (2 generations ago) and watch from 9 ft and it is fine. Yep - you could go with a 50 - but a 42 inch 940 would be a great from that distance.

And you will have cash left over to buy a top quality DVD player. I would recommend a used Pioneer Elite 59AVi.

We have had our Pioneer Plasma for 2 years and never had any regrets.
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