Originally Posted by Jawzey
The ST series I believe has the new "Louvre Filter" that is used for anti glare. I have no first hand experience with this new filter, but I am told that it is unpleasant and is actually a drawback in the higher end Panasonic models.
Whoever told you that is wrong. It doesn't detract from the picture quality and this year's version is a bit clearer than last year's version. The Louvre Filter on the ST50 is the same one that's used on the GT50 and VT50, and the VT50 won the big VE HD TV Shootout held in a completely dark room so i don't see how some people here keep insisting that it detracts from the picture quality because it does not. I've spent a lot of time checking out the GT50 in the dark auditioning room at Magnolia and it looks better than any other TV i've experienced with the sole exception of a 9G Kuro - the the ST50 has the exact same Louvre Filter and Black Filter as the GT50 does.
my best advice I can give you is to go to your local Best Buy and take a look at the two sets yourself. Choose the one with the best PQ to you.
That's actually not good advice - Best Buy is about the worst place to judge the picture quality of a UT50 (or even an ST50) since the store is way brighter than a home environment. When i see the UT50 at Best Buy all i see is the store lights, checkstands, shelving, and my own face reflected in all dark content the screen and it completely ruins the picture just like it does on the clear-screened LED LCD TVs. I have a smaller clear-screened LED TV in my home office and i see myself in the screen any time there is dark content being displayed and it wrecks it for me.
And people considering the UT50 are almost assuredly going to put the TV in a dark or light-controlled room so looking at one in a super-bright Best Buy store won't give them any idea of what it would look like in the dark or in their own home. Best Buy also doesn't adjust or calibrate these TVs and the source feed is usually not optimal so the picture quality is not representative of how much better it would look in a proper home environment with proper settings and a good source.
If someone doesn't need or want the Louvre Filter of an ST50, then the UT50 has better overall picture quality than any other non-filtered Plasma or LED LCD on the market regardless of price - mostly because of it's superior black level and contrast ratio. But looking at it in the store actually turns people away from it because of the reflections.