Well, I just came back from 90 minutes at the largest Mitsubishi dealer in the country (Paul's TV in La Habra, CA - "I AM the king!"). And, since I spent the entire time watching the 525 and comparing, here is my report:
First of all some information - the 52525 is (obviously) available now. I don't think I can list the Paul's price here...but, lets say it is right around the $4k point we've been discussing. The 62" will be out next week.
This is the FIRST AVAILABLE HD2+ DLP set. It uses the HD2+ chip, a 7 segment wheel, and a "proprietary" Mitsubishi light engine.
Now for some viewing facts...
I was able to watch SD through an S-Video feed, a 480p progressive feed from a progressive DVD player through component, and a HDTV 1080i feed through component (scaled to 720p by the TV).
I compared all three feeds and PQ to the 55813 Diamond Series CRT RPTV and to the PD-5030 plasma TV. Side-by-side-by-side, sitting 8-10' away.
Initial impressions of the HD2+:
This is what you've all been waiting for. Heck, it's what I've been waiting for!! But, I can sum it up quickly: LOWER YOUR EXPECTATIONS NOW!
The HD2+ is great looking, but it is no miracle chip. The contrast superiority is noticeable - it has that patented DLP 3-d feeling of depth to the picture (well, at least with HDTV). It IS a bit brighter and sharper than the Sammy HLN with HD2 (and, obviously, much sharper than the HD3 HLP's), but not a LOT more. But, improved contrast, black level, shadow detail are only slightly improved. Just, don't go in expecting the 2nd coming, or you will wonder what all the hype has been about. It looks better...just not amazingly so.
It IS much sharper and better looking, with deeper blacks, than the plasma. MUCH more. I think the picture clearly tops LCD/Plasma (there was a Panny LCD behind me to glance at).
I noticed no rainbows...and I waggled and shook the hell out of my head.
AND, the dithering is MUCH more improved over the HLP's, and especially the HLN's. Some dithering still remains during fast movement (saw it during some soccer footage), but this is the area of most improvement (other than blacks/contrast).
Screen door? Not in HDTV...but, lesser inputs had noticeable pixelation...let's get to that...
The PQ for SD:
The 55813 wins this category hands down. I know all 3 TV's have the "AVMP" Mitsubishi engine to help with SD transfer, but only the CRT RPTV looked halfway decent. There was SO much pixelization on the SD pic for the 52525, that I flat out said, "I don't think I can watch regular TV on this set."
The PQ on DVD:
This is where I'm most interested, since I watch about 65% DVD on my set. I played PotC, Open Range, and RotK, checking multiple scenes for color, greys, blacks, CR, brightness, etc.
The colors are very nice, though (as I said) I am not blown away. The depth of the CR and blacks are noticeable. Being a person who prefers a more "filmlike" look, I still prefer the 55813, but it lacks the depth of the HD2+. Video games probably look AWESOME on the HD2+.
Here's the big problem, and it is likely a Mitsubishi thing, not HD2+: LOTS of pixelization. The 55813 picture is sharp AND smooth. The plasma screen is smooth, but lacks the sharpness, depth, or strong blacks of either of the other TV's. The 52525 is sharp and deep, but VERY rough. I tried turning progressive scan off, but it made little difference. Lots of artifacts clearly visible and disappointing. I would suggest someone view a 720p digital feed through the HDMI port and report back. I'd be anxious to see what that looks like. I suspect, it will look MUCH better. But, bottom line, until I see what it looks like, I will not buy this TV. Someone could even take a look at a 1080i component feed from a DVD player. It's possible that downconverting would look better. But, I think I am confident in saying that upconverting to 720p looks crappy. Again, for DVD viewing (until I see a pure 720p feed on the HDMI input), I would pick the 55813.
VERY nice. This is where the TV shines. This is where you really see the depth and sharpness. Excellent picture, and next to the plasma? It put the plasma to shame. So much more vivid, sharp, deep. It really does feel 3-D. The 55813 does quite well too...but, again, it is more "filmlike" - lacking that DLP depth/3-D quality.
So, there you have it. I'm sure we'll see many more reviews and opinions, but that's mine for now.
I, for one, have two things I now MUST view - the JVC DILA set, and I have to see a 720p digital feed into this set to see if DVD can look better.
A few notes:
The screen sucks. It catches everything - any light around is reflected. You'll want to remove the screen or get a better model with an anti-glare screen.
The rep said the Diamond 52825's will be in by the end of the month! Medallions coming at the same time.