New to AVS forum and first post.
I've looking to upgrade my 11-year old Toshiba 36-inch HD CRT and am considering the 50GT50. I have done extensive online and in-store research for quite some time (on the 2012 Panasonic Plasma line vs. other makes and models). I was hoping to get some user feedback that pertains to my situation.
I don't watch much cable TV at the moment (Walking Dead, some HBO series), but I do game on my Xbox 360 (on the weekends) and have a Sony Blu-Ray player I received for Christmas that I plan on using.
The reviews for this TV seem to be very positive. I am a bit concerned about the buzzing, but it seems this is a luck-of-the draw type of issue whereas it is always present but to a lesser extent in certain models.
I went to Best Buy this past week (been there several times) to check out the 50GT50. Thankfully, they had it in the home theatre section and not in the main part of the store, so the lighting was more forgiving. I requested "The Dark Knight Rises" and was pleased with the picture. I even messed with the settings (THX, THX Bright Room, etc.). Although THX was a lot better than the other modes, I feel it could definitely use some further tweaking.
I feel that for this price, the comparable LEDs do not hold their own. Movies seem to have a certain film quality that the LEDs lack. However, and I hope I don't offend anyone, I feel that the higher-priced LEDs have a "crispness" that the GT50 (plasmas, in general?) doesn't have. I know there are a lot of "smoke and mirrors" regarding LED picture quality and that most agree the picture on plasmas are better, but I couldn't help but to notice this. I also realize these sets can look vastly different once they are in one's home. In addition, these LEDs that I'm referring to are twice as much (or several hundred dollars more). I also can't stand the "soap opera" look - yuck.
If I pull the trigger, I don't plan on getting this calibrated (will probably just find some nifty settings online - D-Nice?). However, I will do the proper break-in for the first 200 hours. After that, I feel I shouldn't have to tend to the TV (IR, image retention, etc.). (I only game for a few hours on Friday and Saturday evenings.)
My main question concerns how this TV handles gaming. Coming from an HD CRT with no lag time, will I notice a substantial difference? I believe the "game mode," which I'm not fond of using because it will reduce the picture quality, has a lag time of 30 ms. I'm not sure what the regular modes have and how noticeable it may be. Also, does the picture look crisp and vivid for games, or are LEDs better suited? Would anyone recommend using the Panny for movies and keeping my current set for gaming? I know my current TV isn't "true HD," but I literally have no issues whatsoever when gaming (lag, blur, etc.), but I guess the higher resolution (and other advancements) would transolate into better PQ. I asked if I could get a gaming demo at Best Buy, but they couldn't do it.
Bottom Line: What will be the difference in a gaming experience (good and/or bad and how vast) when compared to my current TV?
If gaming wasn't a factor, I would be pretty set on this TV as movies look pretty fantastic.
Thanks for reading - I appreciate any insight (and sorry if I rambled or misspoke on any of these items).
(I'll also post in the gaming forum.)