Originally Posted by northman
And second, a bit more vague: I have a 5-year old Sony CRT, a KD-34XS955 (HD, 10801, hdmi, etc). I don't know if CRTs are scoffed at these days but I actually really like the picture. I've never owned a plasma or lcd. I'm thinking plasma rather than led/lcd for all the obvious reasons--my question is simply whether I'm going to be getting a better picture with the two panasonic plasmas than on my CRT. What can I expect? It's *really* hard to judge from standing in front of the dozens of big bright screens in the big box stores around here. I find it both overwhelming and underwhelming. And my CRT doesn't have off-angle problems, floating black, image ghosts, etc. (Basically I want to hear that either panasonic will blow away my CRT!)
Sorry but that's not gonna happen. I have a 34XBR960 and no current flat panel has a better contrast, superior viewing angles, less input lag, color accuracy (debatable), warmth, and overall depth/sharpness than it. I also have a Pioneer 5020fd, and while this isn't an Elite, it's still a far cry from the Sony side by side with same signal, same source, same cable.. SD, HD, Blu-ray, DVD, no matter. It's just not gonna happen. Maybe the Pio 500m rivals it? But probably only by a hair.
If it's size that your after, then you have no choice to upgrade. By all means, a 9G Pioneer will satisfy you enough that you'll forget about the small 34" size. But don't think by forking over a lot of cash for a plasma today is going to net you a greater picture that what you already have (XS955 is a beast). It's just not gonna happen.
Plasma gurus can flog me all they want, but I think this genuinely answers his question.