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I am contemplating upgrading to Plasma. I have just started to comb this forum so I apologize if this has been addressed somewhere.


There seems to be a lot of opinions about black level and pixelization with plasma tvs showing an ntsc source.


I currently have Sony XBR400 (Wega) direct view (i think this is the correct terminology). In a side by side comparison with say the leading 50" panasonic plasma, what would I expect to see? The low end plasmas tvs that I've seen on display at Best Buy and Sears always look a little blurry to me. Would my Sony blow away the plasma or would I be completely shocked at how good the Plasma looked in comparison? I would like to replace the sony with a plasma tv so it needs to perform well with regular old digital cable.


any and all opinions are appreciated.


thanks,


Mike
 

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The larger the screen, the blurrier it is.


I'm not sure how big your Sony is, but directview CRTs have a very high contrast ratio (in fact, Sony "invented" the term, I believe for their trinitron invention in the 80s).


It's always a trade off, bigger screen vs. quality & price. The bigger the screen, the more expensive and complicated it is to compensate for loss of clarity.


what most of us do is evaluate how big a screen we want, then decide on technology (e.g., a 42" would be wasted on a projector, for example), what our lighting conditions are (which also determines if you need a flat screen directview, a front/back projector, or a plasma).


Not every room is right for plasma and not everyone is plasma oriented.
 

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oferlaor is pretty much on the mark. Plasmas are especially good for:


1. Spaces where you don't have much room.

2. Light is a problem ruling out rear or front projection.

3. or you have decorating requirements. Plasmas look nice.


Plasmas also fall into a definite size niche: 42" - 60" covered by other display mediums.


So, plasma may be the way to go if you rate any of the above as important and you have the means to purchase. If Picture quality is your highest or only consideration and the above are not important to you, you might do well to consider another display type.


Also, I'd hypothesize that your display type is also a matter of taste. That is to say, judging displays is somewhat subjective. Look at a good plasma display with an HD and DVD signal; if it doesn't really blow you away, you also may prefer a different display medium.


And finally, don't judge plasmas by what you see at Best buy. Though the Best Buy folks may be bright enough from time to time to use an HD demo loop on these displays, often their display selection is limited to models that may or may not really show off what a plasma display can offer. I'd suggest shopping around a couple of AV stores; especially look a the Fujitsu, Panasonic and Pioneer models.


Good luck. --Karl
 

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Major Astro,


Ain't I always on mark?!


One last thing, out of the box, plasmas are TERRIBLY calibrated. The standard calibration for these units (which is usually how it's setup in most places), is WAY to sharp, contrast is WAY too high and brightness is set all wrong. The plasma is set to pretty much shine brighter than the one standing next to it...


I find that with default settings (e.g., I had to reset my plasma settings after *someone* - read: my son or daughter) changed some settings on me. I had to recalibrate the screen again after the reset. I found it physically painful to look at the uncalibrated screen (when white was being shown, I could feel it burning into my retinas like looking straight into the sun...).


So, when looking at a demo room, ask for the remote and don't be afraid to play around with it.


As Major Astro says, most places have no idea how to set the plasmas up for a decent picture so you can only compare screens in places that do know what the heck they're doing...
 
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