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KURO KRP-500M vs Panny TC-P54Z1 - advice please

post #1 of 33
Thread Starter 
I'm in South Africa and we really get ripped off for these toys. I'll quote prices in ZAR (with USD in brackets). I would really appreciate any advice you guys are willing to offer.

I have a Pio 8G KURO PDP-508XG (not fullHD, but that is definitely not the most important thing on a panel) that I purchased exactly one year ago for R40 000 ($5440). That is still the only 50" Pioneer available in SA, still at the same price. Anyway, I am still blown away by the absolutely brilliant picture. It is in a dedicated room, running off a Oppo BDP-83. We mostly watch TV on an older 42" LG, not a bad panel, but certainly no KURO. While they are still available I was thinking of importing a KRP-500M, putting that in the dedicated room and then at least I would have my 8G as my everyday TV.

I figured my best option would be to get a local company bring in the KRP-500M with KRP-TS02 stand for R30 000 ($4080). At least I would not carry the risk of it going missing or getting damaged in transit, but I would not have any warranty. I placed the order 2 days ago, but now cancelled it because I spoke to a local dealer that has a Panny TC-P42Z1 in stock for R45 000 ($6120).

So:

KRP-500M
=======
Best reference panel ever made as far as I can see
50"
R30K
Will only get it in a month
No local warranty
Will have to run off a 220V to 120V step down transformer

Panny TC-54Z1
===========
54"
R45K
Can get now
Locally supported

What do you guys recommend? Please no fanboy comments
DNice, I love my 8G KURO (actually thought nothing could be better) ... will I be happy with the Z1? ... will I always wonder if the KRP would be better?

Any advice would be much appreciated.
post #2 of 33
Thread Starter 
oh ... I also need to mention that I will probably not be able to get it properly clibrated in SA, so it needs to be good with out-of-the-box settings or at least using settings available on the net/forum
post #3 of 33
Quote:
Originally Posted by Hendrik vR View Post

oh ... I also need to mention that I will probably not be able to get it properly clibrated in SA, so it needs to be good with out-of-the-box settings or at least using settings available on the net/forum

The 500M is the best flat-panel display in the world right now - there's nothing wrong with the Panasonic, but if you're going to all this trouble you might as well get the best.

And since you're wondering about calibration, I would check out Value Electronics in Scarsdale, New York, which has a package deal where you can have your 500M calibrated at the store before it is shipped by D-Nice, who is a tremendously knowledgeable and skilled calibrator..

Not sure if they can ship to South Africa, but it's worth a try.
post #4 of 33
Thread Starter 
Wow, yes, if that is a possibility, I wouldn't mind a KRP calibrated by that man!


I'm very worried about the number of complaints I see about KRP's that got damaged during transit. Even if I would not be carrying the financial risk, it might take months to get a KRP safely here.

The locally supplied Z1 (with full guarantee) is really starting to look good. Would it beat my 8th gen KURO in every department ... black level, shadow detail, colour correctness, image processing, motion etc. ?

Another question on the WirelessHD that comes with the Z1 ... can it only be used to connect the Panny controller to the panel, or can that connection be made with an HDMI cable and could one then use the wireless bits to connect a source component to the setup?
post #5 of 33
Well let's look at this rationally. At the price you're paying ($6000) for the z1, you could get 3 of the krp shipped to you if you can find a US seller will to do so. You'd have to pay for customs and probably some enhanced shipping so that it arrived in one piece, but your cost would be way less. One thing you should be aware however is the KRP can use up to 400w max (this'll matter most during breakin if you don't have it done in advance - normal use is somewhere around 230-280W). I don't know what kind of electricity you have going there, but you might want to check to make sure it'll be able to handle whichever panel you want.
post #6 of 33
Quote:
Originally Posted by Hendrik vR View Post

Wow, yes, if that is a possibility, I wouldn't mind a KRP calibrated by that man!


I'm very worried about the number of complaints I see about KRP's that got damaged during transit. Even if I would not be carrying the financial risk, it might take months to get a KRP safely here.

The locally supplied Z1 (with full guarantee) is really starting to look good. Would it beat my 8th gen KURO in every department ... black level, shadow detail, colour correctness, image processing, motion etc. ?

Another question on the WirelessHD that comes with the Z1 ... can it only be used to connect the Panny controller to the panel, or can that connection be made with an HDMI cable and could one then use the wireless bits to connect a source component to the setup?

Actually I think the new Panasonics are still mostly bested by the 8G Kuros.

And let's face it - once you've had a Kuro, second-best isn't going to be good enough. I really think you should investigate getting the 500M.
post #7 of 33
Quote:
Originally Posted by p59teitel View Post

Actually I think the new Panasonics are still mostly bested by the 8G Kuros.

How so?

They're pretty identical in terms of black level. But Panasonic is brighter, color accuracy is comparable if Panny is set to the THX mode, Panasonic has 1080 lines of motion resolution and there is clearly less PWM noise present. And someone might even appreciate the fact that 12G Panasonics use less power than Pioneers.

And as for the original matter, I would personally ignore the Z1 and buy a V10. According to a few reviews they're identical in terms of picture quality. The Z1 does look definitely very sleek but IMO it would be more rational to buy a P58V10 or even a P65V10. Always aim for the bigger picture size
post #8 of 33
^^^....but the price of a 58V10 is MUCH higher than a 500M.
post #9 of 33
Quote:
Originally Posted by Collusion View Post

How so?

They're pretty identical in terms of black level. But Panasonic is brighter, color accuracy is comparable if Panny is set to the THX mode, Panasonic has 1080 lines of motion resolution and there is clearly less PWM noise present. And someone might even appreciate the fact that 12G Panasonics use less power than Pioneers.

And as for the original matter, I would personally ignore the Z1 and buy a V10. According to a few reviews they're identical in terms of picture quality. The Z1 does look definitely very sleek but IMO it would be more rational to buy a P58V10 or even a P65V10. Always aim for the bigger picture size

If you set the Panny to THX mode to get maximum color accuracy, then you croak the light output to around 10 ftL less than what a properly calibrated 8G Kuro 5080 puts out - so unfortunately you can't have that cake and eat it too. "Lines of motion resolution" is an utterly worthless marketing gimmick number, right up there with the 600 hz sub-field drive number nonsense. And plenty of people who've posted here think Panasonic's picture is as noisy or even noisier than other plasmas, and there's no number to quantify that quality anyway.

That's not to say the Panasonic is a bad display - it's a very good display. But it's not better than an 8G Kuro, and doesn't come close to the 500M.
post #10 of 33
Why are you looking at a 54Z1? It looks sexy but it is ridiculously overpriced considering it is the SAME EXACT TV as the cheaper 54V10.
post #11 of 33
He's in South Africa and may not have the same electronics choices we do here in the U.S.
post #12 of 33
Quote:
Originally Posted by p59teitel View Post

He's in South Africa and may not have the same electronics choices we do here in the U.S.

I personally own a KRP-500M purchased from Value Electronics. They did the 150 hour burn-in and ISFccc calibration by D-Nice himself, pre-shipping, I believe this gives you the best display available in the world, it is stupendous. Buy this if they will ship to you, it blows away the panny, and you will be amazed how much better it is than your 8G Kuro. Give them a call, maybe they can make arrangements.
post #13 of 33
according to the site, you have to be within 300 miles of their retail establishment for Pioneer purchases.
post #14 of 33
Thread Starter 
Hi Guys, thanks for the help ... I think I lost the plot along the way.

I didn't order the KRP because I needed a new TV (My 8G is still the best panel I have ever seen) ... I did it because I wanted the BEST before it disappears forever. ... and it just irritates the hell out of me that people around here thinks a Sinotec 40" LCD is superior to my KURO because it is fullHD!!!

Buying a Panny V series locally (still need to check whether they are available, we are always about 2 years behind!) might make more sense as it will have local aftersales support and it will probably be cheaper than importing a KRP, but I think I'll always wonder what the KRP would have been like.

I'll go view the Panasonics over the weekend just so I know I've done my homework properly, but come Monday I will probably start organizing a 500M again. ... if I can get one calibrated by D-Nice, BONUS!

That Z1 does look very slick
post #15 of 33
Is the Elite PRO-101FD monitor not an option for you? Being the Signature series, it is apparently made of hand-picked components and has a 100-hour break-in done at Pioneer factory. I suggest this model only because you say you're looking for the BEST.

The picture this produces apparently is nothing short of spectacular!
post #16 of 33
Thread Starter 
Mmmm ... the only 50" locally available is the 508XG for R40 000

If I want to import, my safest option is basically to use one of three companies, who all as far as I can see, just sell amazon (both us and uk) stuff. To cover tax, import duties, insurance and shipping, they almost double the exchange rate, ie. I end up paying double the amazon price.

So my choices are:
KRP-500M (with stand) - R30 000
PRO-101FD - R50 000
post #17 of 33
Quote:
Originally Posted by vinnie97 View Post

according to the site, you have to be within 300 miles of their retail establishment for Pioneer purchases.

That's for delivery by their company van (personalized delivery in essence). I recently got a 500M delivered from Value Electronics and I'm 1600 miles away.
post #18 of 33
Someone in Aruba got a 500M from them too.
post #19 of 33
Quote:
Originally Posted by Hendrik vR View Post

Mmmm ... the only 50" locally available is the 508XG for R40 000

If I want to import, my safest option is basically to use one of three companies, who all as far as I can see, just sell amazon (both us and uk) stuff. To cover tax, import duties, insurance and shipping, they almost double the exchange rate, ie. I end up paying double the amazon price.

So my choices are:
KRP-500M (with stand) - R30 000
PRO-101FD - R50 000

That price tag does seem prohibitive!

The question is, how far are you willing to go?
post #20 of 33
Consider the Risks

Pioneer KRP Shipments and Damage Tracking Thread:
http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showt...8#post14185548
An AVS dealer said the US damage rate is 40+%.
International insurance must be very expensive. Then paying the customs broker for a damaged display.

I just saw Blood Diamond (poor Leonardo) Hmmm!

9G Buzz:
http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showthread.php?t=1044254
post #21 of 33
Quote:
Originally Posted by Hendrik vR View Post

KRP-500M
=======
Best reference panel ever made as far as I can see
50"
R30K
Will only get it in a month
No local warranty
Will have to run off a 220V to 120V step down transformer

You can erase the step down transformer from that list, ALL Kuros support 220V EVEN if rated at 120V only.
I live in Uruguay, South América, my 500M was bought in Miami, states 120V/60hz at the back, and has been running at 220V/50Hz for the last two months, no problem at all.
The 500M also supports Pal and Secam, even being a NA model, that's why I chose it.
If you go for the 500M I highly recommend the ISF patch.
post #22 of 33
The Z1 should be very close to the 8G Kuro, both visually and by the numbers. However, it can't touch the 9G 500M Kuro. Still, it's a very nice display with outstanding aesthetics, if you can afford it. I'd rather wait for next year's Panasonic models, though.
post #23 of 33
Quote:
Originally Posted by H_Prestige View Post

The Z1 should be very close to the 8G Kuro, both visually and by the numbers. However, it can't touch the 9G 500M Kuro. Still, it's a very nice display with outstanding aesthetics, if you can afford it. I'd rather wait for next year's Panasonic models, though.

You reckon next year's Panasonics would beat the 9G Kuros?
post #24 of 33
Quote:
Originally Posted by mpedris View Post

You reckon next year's Panasonics would beat the 9G Kuros?

I have no idea. But it seems they will be quite nice indeed.
post #25 of 33
Quote:
Originally Posted by mpedris View Post

You reckon next year's Panasonics would beat the 9G Kuros?

It is possible that next year's Panasonics will be the 9G Kuros!
post #26 of 33
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kal Rubinson View Post

It is possible that next year's Panasonics will be the 9G Kuros!

Heh! Actually, from I've heard Panasonic is concentrating on the 3D stuff for next year and not trying to make Kuro Redux.
post #27 of 33
Quote:
Originally Posted by p59teitel View Post

Heh! Actually, from I've heard Panasonic is concentrating on the 3D stuff for next year and not trying to make Kuro Redux.

Yeah, a market strategy of losing more money faster doesn't generally go down well with the bean counters.
post #28 of 33
Quote:
Originally Posted by JonW747 View Post

Yeah, a market strategy of losing more money faster doesn't generally go down well with the bean counters.

Amusing comment, but not actually a sensible one.

Pioneer panels were expensive because they didn't make enough, not becuase of what they were. I see no reason why Panasonic would not wish to incorporate some Pioneer tech into their 2010+ panels. It surely won't raise the cost much (or at all) and will likely improve the picture quality. It's a no brainer in fact.
post #29 of 33
Quote:
Originally Posted by Chippy99 View Post

Amusing comment, but not actually a sensible one.

Pioneer panels were expensive because they didn't make enough, not becuase of what they were. I see no reason why Panasonic would not wish to incorporate some Pioneer tech into their 2010+ panels. It surely won't raise the cost much (or at all) and will likely improve the picture quality. It's a no brainer in fact.

Corporations like Pioneer pay their accountants a lot of money to figure out how much they need to sell a TV for and how much volume they need to achieve to turn a profit.

Any change that requires re-tooling a factory is a major change and a major investment, and even small changes add up for a company dealing in high volumes.

So while Panasonic as a larger volume producer may have lower overhead costs and hence can afford to produce and sell TVs at a lower price, that doesn't mean they're in the business to throw profit away. A feature isn't added just because it sounds cool (they have marketing departments to make their product sound cool), it has to actually result in increased sales, increased market share, increased profit, etc. If they have to retool a factory, or throw away millions of $ in inventory to engineer something a better way, it'd better recoup that lost money.

Panasonic takes a completely different approach towards design, pricing, and engineering - and we simply cannot predict which if any features will make sense to them to incorporate.
post #30 of 33
Hi Henrik

I'm Andrew, also a South African and also facing the same problem of desperately wanting a KRP-500M with a stand of some kind. (Pioneer has discontinued this model right?) I just saw one here in Malaysia, but its a display model and they want R31600.00 for it.

I was just wondering how did it all go for you in the end. Did they ship it unscathed? How much did it end up costing you in total? Any voltage issues or anything else you could advise on? I hope you don't me asking, I just don't know where to start, but after viewing every possible display I could (LED's) included I have no doubt the KRP-500M is the best I have seen to date. I bought a Pioneer BDP-LX52 player (I believe its one of the very few 48 Bit Colour Processors around) I couldn't believe the quality of this player even on a Sony LCD. So with my R3000.00 HDMI cable I'm hoping I'll have a beautiful image..

Your advice / help would be greatly appreciated
Andrew
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