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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
After spending much time on this forum before closing a plasma deal I feel most of the members as well as the online plasma buying guide find pasasonic pt-42pd3p the superior product over all else.I found only one panny model in a sears and it was set so dull and soft as to look poor compared to any crt models however all the plasma in sears looked awful.My next stop was best buy which had a jaw dropping pioneer 5030hd for 11grand but it was the most exciting thing around combined with the tuner box and speakers.My viewing area is only 6ft so I got about 2 ft from this set and it still lookeed great.Now my complicated opinion questions.1 Will the panny pt42pd3p look as good if not better than the pioneer when its properly set up? 2 Is a high def 50 put 6ft from a viewer an acceptable picture without pixel annoyance? 3 Ive seen a lot of plasma this week but only sears had the awful looking panny but should i ignore what Ive seen and stick with my original idea to buy the panny pt42pd3p saving myself some heavy cash in the hope that the pioneer 50 I saw in best buy will pale by comparison to the panny when I set it up correctly.I know this all sounds like im getting neurotic over plasma but this is a very big important decision for me and I need all the help I can get.
 

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Sears is probably feeding the Panasonic a crappy signal. If you watch a plain satellite or analog signal on the Panasonic and then see HD on the Pioneer, then of course the Pioneer is going to look better.


One hint: get the remote and hit the Picture button, then Normalize the settings. This will get rid of any whacked out settings.
 

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Point of clarification re: Esben's post. The 50" Pioneer available for under $6K is the 503cmx, not the 5030HD. It does not come with the set top box or stand that the 5030HD comes with. However, the picture is probably better because the set top box has an inferior scaler. You can get an excellent STB for under $1K.
 

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I doubt that the Pio would "pale by comparison" to the Panny.


They are both really great displays with different strong points.


In the first place, the Pio 503CMX is more often compared than any other 50" Pio and it can be had for way less than $11K.


Second, I would be willing to bet that the Panny that you saw was receiving a crummy signal as opposed to the display itself being at fault. The Panny's are great displays. Do yourself a favor and try to find a place that is feeding both the Pio and the Panny a proper signal and then compare. It might be hard to find a retailer showing the 503CMX. However, for all intents and purposes, it is the commercial version of the Elite series 50" Pios.


I am 10' away from my 503CMX. I would think that 6' is just far enough away to enjoy the 50" Pios or Pannys as well as the current crop of 42" displays.


You should not be dissuaded from the Panny based on the Pio "paling by comparison". Both make great displays and at least for me, when properly set up with both receiving comparable signals, neither brand pales by comparison to the other. However, IMO each has different PQ strengths.
 

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mattg3,

Before you make your final decision, go to a higer end shop (with a DVD you own) and give the panny another try. Make sure you see it with HDTV also
 

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This is indeed a big decision, but sooner or later you will have to stop analyzing and buy. You can ponder various "what if" questions forever, and the combinations and permutations of comparing this plasma to that, and then to another, and so on, are literally infinite.


My guess is that something was way out of kilter with the Panasonics you saw at Sears. As you have noted, these sets are consistently rated at or near the top in almost every review or test you read; and furthermore, they usually cost several hundred dollars less than competitive models from other manufacturers.


I was in the same boat a few months ago, and decided to bite the bullet and order a Panasonic vs. agonizing over the issue forever. I'm glad I made this decision - it is a very good set. You should be able to find a 42" Panasonic for around $3600, delivered; IMHO it represents about the best value around.
 

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Quote:
Originally posted by mattg3
I found only one panny model in a sears and it was set so dull and soft as to look poor compared to any crt models however all the plasma in sears looked awful. Ive seen a lot of plasma this week but only sears had the awful looking panny but should i ignore what Ive seen and stick with my original idea to buy the panny pt42pd3p saving myself some heavy cash.
I'd suggest buying ANYWHERE but Sears. The Panny they sell is an older model than what is generally available (they are still selling the 4u and not the more recent 5u model with many improvements) They are asking $4999+$499 delivery (this is manditory) + tax if applicable. I don't think they will haggle either. For me in MI this would run me $5800 total! You should be able to beat this price by almost $2000 on just about ANY internet site, including Dell (US government site.)


If you want to see a Panny in a halfway decent presentation, I'd suggest Circuit City. My local has both Panny's (HD+SD) and the Pio on display on the same wall. The downside is that they only have them on a HD feed and you can't see DVD or cable signals for comparison. I guess you could look at Sears for the worst possible signal and CC for the best and decide.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Thanks I will never go in Sears again
 

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I experienced the same observations as srgilbert. I've checked two Sears stores in the Philadelphia area and they both had the previous model on display. I also agree with the weak signal theory.
 
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