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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Anyone aware of a good comparison between 720p LCOS (or microdisplay in general) and plasma?


I had kind of settled on the 56" JVC 720p. Then I foolishly stopped into the Plasma forum and learned about the 50" Maxent HD plasma which is also in my price range.


The ability to wall-mount and the wide viewing angle are quite attractive. Of course, the larger size of the JVC is also quite appealing.


I'm most interested in learning about the image differences between LCOS/microdispaly and plasma. The two types of displays never seem to be located next to each other in the store, so I can't really get a sense for how the two compare picture quality wise.


For example, I've heard folks say plasma has a more "3-d like" quality. I'm not quite sure what that means. Are there other such differences between the two? Which one is better in a semi-bright room? Which can handle reflection from a window better?


Thanks for any info,

Ed Lee
 

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The Sony & JVC 1080p LCOS sets are the closest to a good plasma that I've seen in a RPTV. Up to 50", the plasma proabably has a slightly better PQ at about the same price, albeit with a chance of screen burn-in. Beyond 50", plasma starts to get very expensive and I don't think there are 1080 plasmas available yet so SDE is an issue. The one thing that bothers me about plasma is the huge power consumption (~600 watts) which is environmentally an issue. Not only is that > twice the power of any RPTV, it can heat up a small room which could be a concern in warm weather. One other issue is altitude. If you live in Denver or beyond in elevation, you may have to forego plasma.


The only 720p LCOS sets IIRC are JVC and Brillian. The JVC isn't close, and the Brillian is more than most 1080p sets. While quite good, it's very expensive.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by paulbf1
The Sony & JVC 1080p LCOS sets are the closest to a good plasma that I've seen in a RPTV. Up to 50", the plasma proabably has a slightly better PQ at about the same price, albeit with a chance of screen burn-in. Beyond 50", plasma starts to get very expensive and I don't think there are 1080 plasmas available yet so SDE is an issue. The one thing that bothers me about plasma is the huge power consumption (~600 watts) which is environmentally an issue. Not only is that > twice the power of any RPTV, it can heat up a small room which could be a concern in warm weather. One other issue is altitude. If you live in Denver or beyond in elevation, you may have to forego plasma.


The only 720p LCOS sets IIRC are JVC and Brillian. The JVC isn't close, and the Brillian is more than most 1080p sets. While quite good, it's very expensive.
You need to realize that the power consumption of a plasma is generally around half of what the specs show when viewing on a calibrated set. Once it's calibrated, which normally means the brightness, picture, contrast is toned down, the plasma is consuming much less power. A projected TV, which uses a lamp that's on all the time, generally uses less power than a plasma but not something that is noticable. Keep in mind that viewing a plasma in a home theater enviroment is normally darker with most lights out, wheras viewing a RP/LCD, which is brighter, is normally viewed with more lights on. What i'm trying to say, and this is backed up with lab tests, is that using a plasma or an LCD/RP under normal conditions is inconsequencial as far as power consumption.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by elee532
Anyone aware of a good comparison between 720p LCOS (or microdisplay in general) and plasma?


I had kind of settled on the 56" JVC 720p. Then I foolishly stopped into the Plasma forum and learned about the 50" Maxent HD plasma which is also in my price range.


The ability to wall-mount and the wide viewing angle are quite attractive. Of course, the larger size of the JVC is also quite appealing.


I'm most interested in learning about the image differences between LCOS/microdispaly and plasma. The two types of displays never seem to be located next to each other in the store, so I can't really get a sense for how the two compare picture quality wise.


For example, I've heard folks say plasma has a more "3-d like" quality. I'm not quite sure what that means. Are there other such differences between the two? Which one is better in a semi-bright room? Which can handle reflection from a window better?


Thanks for any info,

Ed Lee


What the "3-D" means is that an image on a plasma is shown directly onto the screen using phospers like a CRT tube TV. On a RP TV the image is projected onto the screen using a color wheel or panels. A lot of people feel a projected picture doesn't feel as real or it looks processed. You have the addition of the SDE which is negated by the SXRD because of pixel density but generally 720 sets will show this the closer you get. Most people do see SSE which is more evident in high contrast scenes but most people seem to tolerate it as a product of the technology.

Generally a projected TV will be softer than a plasma.....people vary in their preferences. I personally like the SXRD for HD programming but do not like how DVD's look on it.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by lipcrkr
You need to realize that the power consumption of a plasma is generally around half of what the specs show when viewing on a calibrated set. Once it's calibrated, which normally means the brightness, picture, contrast is toned down, the plasma is consuming much less power. A projected TV, which uses a lamp that's on all the time, generally uses less power than a plasma but not something that is noticable. Keep in mind that viewing a plasma in a home theater enviroment is normally darker with most lights out, wheras viewing a RP/LCD, which is brighter, is normally viewed with more lights on. What i'm trying to say, and this is backed up with lab tests, is that using a plasma or an LCD/RP under normal conditions is inconsequencial as far as power consumption.
I have no reason to doubt you, but LCDs are about 1/3 of the power consumption of plasmas. I agree with your calibration scenario but if you're watching it in a bright room, you'll probably be drawing close to the stated power.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by paulbf1
I have no reason to doubt you, but LCDs are about 1/3 of the power consumption of plasmas. I agree with your calibration scenario but if you're watching it in a bright room, you'll probably be drawing close to the stated power.
No, what i'm getting at is the electrical power that is used or not used from other sources depending on the display. Whenever someone mentions the power output of a plasma it's generally done to assume that buying a plasma means your utility bill will be higher. But what i'm saying is not only does the wattage flucuate on a plasma but chances are if you are watching a plasma, your room will probably have the lights out or dimmed wheras watching a RP/LCD which is brighter and not as much affected by having the lights on will offset whatever difference a plasma may bring. You would be surprised to find out what other appliances/electronics in your house is using much more power than the plasma. There was a recent discussion in the plasma forum on this subject:
http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showt...er+consumption
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by lipcrkr
but chances are if you are watching a plasma, your room will probably have the lights out or dimmed
Not trying to nitpick, but this is a very strange argument. It's like saying a Denon receiver sounds better than a Sony since the room will probably have less background noise. Why do plasma owners watch in the dark, while RPTV owners watch in a more lit environment? What kind of objective lab tests would make different assumptions about the environment for each technology?


Sure, plasma isn't using 600W all the time. On average, it may use the same as an RPTV when calibrated correctly. However, reality is that not everyone has a nice dark home theater room to get the lowest power consumption from their plasma, and not everybody will calibrate their sets.


That being said, recent advances from manufacturers have reduced power consumption of plasmas to half what it used to be. Today's plasmas use the same amount of power on average as any other digital display technology. I wouldn't get hung up on power consumption when comparing technologies. The image is the important part. If you get a better image at the expense of more power consumption, it's worth every extra watt. :D
 

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I went down this road about a month ago. I went out expecting to buy a plasma set, but ended up buying a Sony LCOS. Both have their pluses and minuses. Their presentations are different, so to at least some extent, personal preferences will dictate. That said, 1080p LCOS will have better detail and better contrast than most plasmas. Plasma isn't for everyone, but neither is LCOS.

In the end, it will depend on what you like the best.

J
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Big J
I went down this road about a month ago. I went out expecting to buy a plasma set, but ended up buying a Sony LCOS. Both have their pluses and minuses. Their presentations are different, so to at least some extent, personal preferences will dictate. That said, 1080p LCOS will have better detail and better contrast than most plasmas. Plasma isn't for everyone, but neither is LCOS.

In the end, it will depend on what you like the best.

J
I think a 1080p Plasma will be better. SDE, which is the worst on plasma, should be eliminated on 1080p sets.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Thanks for the responses folks, and for helping me understand what folks mean when they talk about 3-D. However, the discussion of power consumption hasn't really helped with what I need.


There seems some inference in this discussion that LCOS might work better than plasma in bright rooms. Am I correct on this? Our room doesn't get super bright light, but it's by no means a dark home-theater type room either.


Can anything be said in general about black levels between the two types of technologies?


The new 1080p sets are out of my price range, so I'm most interested in the 720p JVC vs. less expensive 50" plasmas such as the Maxent.


Thanks for any aditional help,

Ed Lee
 

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The genius of the Video Display Industry is knowing that even if it loses money by Plasmas becoming lower margin with competition from Micodisplays--it makes up the difference in replacement bulbs--either way you're going to pay more in MAINTENANCE than you had to in the direct-view CRT days. Aren't you glad you get to pay them to just to watch TV? Their battle cry is pay us now AND pay us later!
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Artwood
snip...


--either way you're going to pay more in MAINTENANCE than you had to in the direct-view CRT days. Aren't you glad you get to pay them to just to watch TV? Their battle cry is pay us now AND pay us later!
This sounds like a WAG to me. After talking to a number of TV service men, the CRT sets being built now are crap. The circuit boards are marginal, the tubes have a tendency to leak and the assembly workmanship 2nd rate. I had a Sony XBR go south a few months after warranty expiration ($300) and my parents had 2 die after eight years (tube failure). The only thing positive to say about CRT sets is, they're cheap (and have good PQ if you like a small screen). Certainly not less maintainance.


As for bulbs, that's the known cost of ownership for having a large screen. At least RP bulbs are cheaper and last longer than FP ones.
 

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I have no doubt that Direct-view CRT sets no longer last--why not make everrything go bad so you can sell it again?


As recently as 5 years ago you could buy an Average Direct-view CRT set--run it 24/7 for 8.5 years before you'd have to replace it. Run any of the great advances swooned over around here and tell me how many times you'll replace the bulbs running 24/7. The point is NOT who runs a set 24/7--that's about as bogus as sayin who would run an automobile 100,000 miles in a year--the point is cars and displays should be reliable enough to where you can use them and not have to worry about BABYING them.


Anyone who doesn't believe that the Video Display Manufacturing companies would much rather sell you another set after you've shelled out big time the second time around for a bulb--hey why shell out for a third bulb why not just buy a whole new set?-- is NAIVE.


I'll make this challenge to ANYONE out there--run any technology display you want to 24/7 against an el cheapo Direct-view CRT and tell me which one will die first. Why is it that the cheaper set weill last longer?


All of this is not to say that everyone should buy el cheapo sets--it's just that you would think with higher prices for bigger sets that the GENIUSES who make such things should be able to figure out a way to either make them more reliable or make the bulbs last longer or be at a cheaper cost!


This post is now over --We return you to your regular PROGRAMMING: The convenience of replacings bulbs--Oh Gee!
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Artwood
I'll make this challenge to ANYONE out there--run any technology display you want to 24/7 against an el cheapo Direct-view CRT and tell me which one will die first. Why is it that the cheaper set weill last longer?


All of this is not to say that everyone should buy el cheapo sets--it's just that you would think with higher prices for bigger sets that the GENIUSES who make such things should be able to figure out a way to either make them more reliable or make the bulbs last longer or be at a cheaper cost!


This post is now over --We return you to your regular PROGRAMMING: The convenience of replacings bulbs--Oh Gee!
At least with just replacing a bulb you get another 2+ years out of it. And then again and again and again if you decide to keep it for several years. A CRT dies and that's it. It's no good anymore unless you want to pay the high cost of getting the tube replaced. And most likely that won't be possible.


I agree on the price of the bulbs and they should be cheaper. But then I look at my cable bill every month and realize that a $200 bulb replacement doesn't seem so bad. And then I look at what I spend on DVDs and so on...
 

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A DLP will look as good as new with a new bulb (unlike a CRT or plasma that wears out).
 

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Originally Posted by BillP
A DLP will look as good as new with a new bulb (unlike a CRT or plasma that wears out).
But some of us don't think a DLP looks good new.......or old.....or whatever.....lol.
 

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A Flat Panel LCD could last up to 60,000 hours before the backlight would have to be replaced--it WOULDN'T be unsalvageable like a Plasma or a Direct-view CRT. How many BULB CHANGES would be necessary before one hit the 60,000 hour point with a LCoS, DLP, etc?


Also don't kid yourself about how great a DLP will look with a bulb changwe--sure that is true, but only for a very short time--bulbs dim much faster than Plasma so most of the time you are watching a rapidly dimming image.


Of course one might say--So what? That's why you don't get a Plasma in the first place. I agree. What's the best brightness-reliability for the long haul compromise...Flat Panel LCD!


One last thing regarding Direct-view CRTs--sure they can last about 8.5 years if run 24/7, but IF they are BABIED the way most bulb replacers baby their displays they can last 20 or 30 years! How many bulb changes would that be BULB REPLACEMENT FANS?



Bottom line: Spin it anyway you want to: bulb replacement at the current rates of time for the current prices is RIDICULOUS! My argument isn't with the wonderful people here who HAVE to put up with it--my sympathies are with them--my argument is with the rip-off companies who are getting away with the practice!


I think the Video Display Industry should strive to dream the impossible dream and make bulbs last 8 years like Direct-view CRT pieces of junk used to last--is that too much to ask? One might say but that would cost alot of money--well the freakin' CRT tubes would last 8 years and would cost about 4 or 5 hundred dollars--that's not a whole lot more than they're asking for replacement bulbs--and they had THICK glass and weighed hundreds of pounds--Don't tell me that the materials used to produced replacement lamps cost anywhere NEAR that amount! Also don't tell me that they are proportionally more expensive than home light bulbs--they're astronomically more.


How about $100 dollar replacement bulbs built by the Chinese and sold by Wal-Mart? Don't tell me it would be impossible to do--are you listening Wal-Mart?


Repeat after me: I am not a bad person if I advocate long replacement bulb life for smaller costs! If all the wonderful technologies we use here can drop as precipitously as they do in price--couldn't replacement bulbs also drop that much?


Come the next big trade show what would be more important to you: the ususal minute improvements in Picure Quality or much cheaper replacement bulbs that didn't degrade in brightness as fast?


P.S. I hope each and every time I mention this ripp-off that all the Industry Plants will have heartburn and that their excuses will become lamer and lamer and lamer. To the Video Consumer: Cheers!
 

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This is a question I have looked at and contemplated for hours. The fact is, both sets have extremely decent pictures but if I had to pick a winner, I'd give the edge to a good plasma because of it's brightness, sharpness, and overall picture stability. But again, the Lcos is no slouch by any degree. This said, consider you should consider the pros and cons of each which should be the factor in determining what you go with.


The biggest problem with the plasmas is as they ages and dim, you can't simply plug a new lamp into the back like a RP and have it look new again. On the other hand, the poor brightness and viewing angle of a RP is also something to consider. There two points are the most important and largest differences between the two and should very much help you decide which to go with .
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Artwood
Also don't kid yourself about how great a DLP will look with a bulb changwe--sure that is true, but only for a very short time--bulbs dim much faster than Plasma so most of the time you are watching a rapidly dimming image.
Based on everything I have read, that is not a true statement. The bulb does not dim slowly over a long time period, but rather goes rather fast toward the end of its life span. I'm still on my 1st bulb, 28 months after buying my DLP, and it is not dimming at all (based on AVIA).
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by BillP
Based on everything I have read, that is not a true statement. The bulb does not dim slowly over a long time period, but rather goes rather fast toward the end of its life span. I'm still on my 1st bulb, 28 months after buying my DLP, and it is not dimming at all (based on AVIA).
That's one of the most important points so far in this thread.


:)
 
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