So, I had a Samsung plasma and the buzzing was MUCH louder on that 2006 model than on the GT50. I barely hear it at all with no audio playing, and do not hear it all when watching the set. It's not an issue, imho.
Last night I started watching with some basic calibrations (special stuff turned off, brightness/contrast dialed in appropriately), but I still have a ton of settings to figure out, including "Native 1080p" mode, which means it supports "4x4x4" content, which I do not understand. I will try to do some research on this.
I started off with Episode 9 of "Game of Thrones" which I think is a TRUE test of black levels. The episode starts off pitch black, and, as another character walks into the dungeon with a torch, slowly, ever so slowly, we see the profile of Ned Stark against the black walls of the dungeon. The entire scene takes place in the shadows, and the set performed amazingly well. This would have destroyed my old 720p plasma (the shadow bands would have been evident), and I think this is a great showcase for the almost 25,000 levels of gray that puts this set apart from the ST50. I am really hoping that other people use this scene to test these sustained black levels; this is where the whole concept of seeing "detail within shadows" really makes sense. The GT50 seemed to relish the challenge, and as my eyes adjusted to the gloom, it was fun to see the many, many details, the stitching in the clothes, the tangled hair, the worn skin—all emerging from the dreary, dark space.
The rest of the episode was equally spectacular, with scenes in the desert, forest and throne rooms pushing the GT50 in a variety of different directions. Gorgeous. I am writing this now hundreds of miles away from my set and I cannot wait to fly back tonight and watch Mad Men to see how it looks.
After Game of Thrones we watched New Girl (my wife needed to laugh after the extraordinarily sad ending of that episode), and the set handled the picture with poise and grace. Indeed, I can't help but think that I am finally watching a TV that LOVES to be on, you know? The Samsung I had before was fine, good, but it struggled with some content, the detail wasn't there, the shadows murky, the reds far, far too hot. The colors on the GT50 are consistent, I did not see any blooming as I used to see on the Samsung, and the contrast, oh the contrast, was fantastic—once your turned the "Panel Brightness" setting to Low, that is. There is no way to turn that setting off (makes sense), but you certainly don't want it higher than Low--you cannot see the dark bars on the S&M disc's contrast test at all with it set on Medium.
I will get into specific options with my next post, but so far, so good.
ps - if anyone has a calibration service they can recommend in Los Angeles, please let me know, I want to get this done soon.