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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Im closer to the actual purchase thanks to this forum but one more issue needs clarification.Im on non digital cable and my main source of entertainment are dvds.Will my overall picture be better on a panny 42 hd or the pt42pd3p?Ive read people say the hd version is only good for high def stuff and actually gives a softer picture to non high def sources.I want the best overall picture possible with the sources Ive mentioned and anyones comments would be appreciated. thanks
 

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I just picked up the 42pd3-p and I went through the same thing trying to decide between it and the hd version. The one thing that cleared it up in my mind was seeing them side by side. Other peoples opinions will only get you so far...... But here is my opinion anyhow :)


The 3-p was much better with DVD and SD television and that the HD was only marginally better with HD(but only when I was within about 6 feet). At a normal viewing distance I thought that the 3-p was just as good with HD and the picture is brighter. Once I threw price into the equation, the 3-p was a no brainer for me considering the $1300 difference. And to top it off, it took me about 45minutes to explain why the hd version was more expensive to my wife. She thought that the 3p was better all around...
 

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I'm facing a similar decision with similar doubts, but the issue that has me puzzled isn't video input, it's PC input.


We have a PC in another room acting as an MP3 server. That PC's video signal is currently being fed into the TV (Trinitron CRT) via S-video. I want to make sure that whatever PDP we end up with can produce a clean, readable image off the PC. While _most_ of the PDP's use will be for TV (mix of HD and non-HD cable with regular DVD playing), I foresee a non-significant amount of its time being used for PC interaction.


To complicate matters more, my wife is adamant that whatever display I decide on has to fit inside this armoir she's in love with. The internal width is 41", meaning that these 42" Panasonics are about the biggest units I can fit inside that cabinet (most other 42" plasmas are more than 41" wide).


With that in mind, would the 1024x768 res of the HD Panny (TH42PHD5UY) make a significant difference over the non-HD Panny (TH42PWD5UY)? I thought I read that neither unit has DVI, so I'd be feeding the PDP an S-video signal from the PC. Would that reduce the image quality difference between these two? Unfortunately, there aren't any local dealers that carry _both_ these units for me to see them side-by-side.


TIA.

- Craig
 

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Quote:
Originally posted by srgilbert
You should know that both Panny's have a standard VGA computer monitor input.
Ah, jeez, duh. {smacks forehead} Thanks.


After more reading (man, there is so much out there), I'm not sure I want to jump on either of these Panny's due to them currently lacking a guaranteed upgrade path to DVI with HDCP. Yes, the TH-42PWD5UY supposedly has an optional DVI board, but (a) it's extra, (b) it doesn't support HDCP, and (c) I've yet to find it for sale anywhere. My guess is that the next round of models from Panasonic will have this (DVI+HDCP) as a standard feature.


Thanks again for the reply.

- Craig
 

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Quote:
Originally posted by cmf
Ah, jeez, duh. {smacks forehead} Thanks.


After more reading (man, there is so much out there), I'm not sure I want to jump on either of these Panny's due to them currently lacking a guaranteed upgrade path to DVI with HDCP. Yes, the TH-42PWD5UY supposedly has an optional DVI board, but (a) it's extra, (b) it doesn't support HDCP, and (c) I've yet to find it for sale anywhere. My guess is that the next round of models from Panasonic will have this (DVI+HDCP) as a standard feature.


Thanks again for the reply.

- Craig
This brings up a question for me: If a plasma's native rate is 480p, is there any need to be concerned with a DVI upgrade path so long as componnent inputs are available down-the-road? Any down resizing of hi-def currently and in the future will be converted to 480p anyway on this set. Is this a correct understanding?
 

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MichaelFaulkner posted:


"This brings up a question for me: If a plasma's native rate is 480p, is there any need to be concerned with a DVI upgrade path so long as componnent inputs are available down-the-road? Any down resizing of hi-def currently and in the future will be converted to 480p anyway on this set. Is this a correct understanding?"


Yes, now and forever.



cmf posted:


"After more reading (man, there is so much out there), I'm not sure I want to jump on either of these Panny's due to them currently lacking a guaranteed upgrade path to DVI with HDCP. Yes, the TH-42PWD5UY supposedly has an optional DVI board, but (a) it's extra, (b) it doesn't support HDCP, and (c) I've yet to find it for sale anywhere. My guess is that the next round of models from Panasonic will have this (DVI+HDCP) as a standard feature".


Everything that I have read concerning Panasonic indicates that they favor DVI-HDMI, not HDCP. Fall 03 was suppose to be the target year, we shall see. I wouldn't waste my time or money on the optional card from Panasonic- its only 1024x768 (4:3) and you lose the component inputs.


Dave
 

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I also just went through the Panny SD vs HD decision. It was tough. I went with the HD and at times I have wished I got the SD. But I know for sure that if I got the SD I'd at times also wish I got the HD.


Ignoring price, the two things that I focussed on were:


1) Visible grid. The SD has a very visible grid (to me).

2) Brightness. The SD has nice brightness.


I was able to view the SD and HD side-by-side. With identical DVDs (although different players.) I was able to adjust brightness to be identical. Doing this, DVD material looked practically identical to me. Other than the SD's grid, any differences were so minor I couldn't trust my eyes.


I also saw the HD next to some Panasonic rear-projection display. Up close, at 4-5', the plasma looked nicer in several respects (nicer picture, no bright spot, nicer flesh tones.)


At home, the HD's brightness is plenty in the evening. Depending on source, I have the picture turned down between 1/4 and 1/2 of the range. During the day I do wish it was brighter (but I had troubles here with my regular TV.)


Interestingly, I'm still able to barely see the HD's grid from my viewing distance (8'). So I know the SD's grid would have bothered me for sure. For HDTV material I'm drawn further in, to maybe 5', and I'm glad I can move in w/o the grid being distracting.


As for Dish network material, I found that if I adjust the sharpness all the way down, bring up the picture and brightness, use "full" aspect setting, and set the vertical size to the max, I get a pretty good picture - at least one who's artifacts aren't overbearing.


I'd make the same difficult choice again. Someday I wish there didn't have to be a choice. I bet in five years when I'm wanting to upgrade again, I'll have an easier and cheaper choice.


Erik
 

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Hi Naegu,


Congratulations on your purchase and also the fact that you DID make a decision. I am also torn between these two models and at times throw in Pio 433CMX in the basket as well to make my life more torturous (I am looking at 42/43" models only).


Have done extensive viewing in stores of all three models (both Panas and Pio 4330 HD) and somehow prefer both panas to Pio irrespective of any source. However I still like Pio's upgrade path.


Between HD and WD pana, it indeed is a tough choice.


For HD sources, HD model shines - no doubt about it. You see the crispness in written text specially. At any distance, the difference is very visible. The PQ also is definitely better on HD.


On DVDs, I agree the difference is very minimal but somehow I did not find the brightness an issue on HD. Since store conditions are not ideal, may be members owning at home "throw light" there. But still, the grids are very visible on WD even for DVDs and they can be bothersome.


I did not get a chance to compare the regular cable on WD and HD. I have seen the cable feed on WD and to me it looked passable. It was not great but not bad either. I have not got a chance to see regular SDTV broadcast on HD and that's where I need the help from members owning these sets. Is WD significantly better than HD on SDTV broadcast? Since SDTV viewing is going to be a sizeable portion of the display usage for at least a few years unfortunately, this factor is equally important for me. If HD is equally good for SDTV also, I would pretty much go for the HD model but if WD is superior, it is a toss up.


Please help me.


Sanjiva
 

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I HAVE THE HD IN NYC WITH TIME WARNER DIGITAL CABLE. THE PQ ON SDTV IS GREAT- SOMETIMES I EVEN GET CONFUSED AND THINK I AM WATCHING HD - (ONLY SOMETIMES!) - I USED TO HAVE THE 38" DIRECT VIEW RCA HDTV AND ITS PQ ON SDTV WAS AWFUL!
 

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Sanjiva,


I ended up with the panny HD model. Since I've never had a WD and HD side-by-side on my setup, I can't really answer the question about which is better with SD. However, I can say that the HD is as good as or better than the 32" panny CRT that it replaced. This is primarily with D* SD material. With DVD's the panny HD is definitely better than the CRT and with HD material, well, it leaves me wanting to see a lot more! So if you're worried about a decrease in quality by going to the panny HD, IMHO, it's nothing to worry about.
 

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OK, I keep thinking I'm getting all this, and then I come across a piece of inconsistent information and I'm back to wondering if indeed I understand anything at all. I've read the FAQ (twice) amongst other sources, but I'm still confused on using these two Panasonics with RGB or DVI input from a PC.


The native res of the WD model is 852x480. The WD model only lists standard VGA as the only resolution it can display uncompressed (higher resolutions get compressed). Does that mean if I found a PC video card that could output 852x480 the unit would not accept it? Obviously, I'd like to be able to fill the entire screen 1:1 with PC display output if possible -- is it?


Regarding the HD model, its native res is 1024x768. So, if I feed it a 1024x768 signal, that will make circles look like flattened ovals, right? So how does it accommodate/correct that? Would I actually only be using a fraction of its native resolution to obtain a non-squished PC image?


Sorry to rehash something that I'm sure has been hashed before, but searches came up either empty or with thousands of hits, and the FAQ only scratches the surface of this issue.


Thanks in advance,

- Craig
 

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Quote:
Originally posted by cmf


The native res of the WD model is 852x480. The WD model only lists standard VGA as the only resolution it can display uncompressed (higher resolutions get compressed). Does that mean if I found a PC video card that could output 852x480 the unit would not accept it? Obviously, I'd like to be able to fill the entire screen 1:1 with PC display output if possible -- is it?
I don't think there are any video cards that can do 852X480. However, you can feed 848X480, 856X480, 856X484, etc and adjust the plasma for 1:1 pixel mapping. I have tried up to 856X488 and could still get 1:1.

Quote:
Originally posted by cmf


Regarding the HD model, its native res is 1024x768. So, if I feed it a 1024x768 signal, that will make circles look like flattened ovals, right? So how does it accommodate/correct that? Would I actually only be using a fraction of its native resolution to obtain a non-squished PC image?
There is no way to get 1:1 pixel mapping on a 1024x768 panel and still have a correct looking desktop. It depends on what you are using your PC for. If its just for DVD or Dscaler playback, they (the dvd and DScaler software) allow for AR adjustment so you can get 1:1 mapping and correct AR on video playback.
 

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i just picked up the non hd set, price was pretty much the main factor, as the diffrence in picture quality (dvd AND hdtv) was not worth the extra 2,000 or so. just wondering how much everyone picked theirs up for?
 

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Like all of you I was plagued with the SD/HD decision, I painfully thought/read/observed/read/and thought some more. It came down to the value index; price divided by performance… clear winner was the TH42PWD5UY. I’m watching a dvd as I speak and I’m in love the picture, took the $1500 I saved and went Christmas shopping. =)
 

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Oh yea... $3800 from 1800plasmas.com, including wall mount, great service, free 2 day shipping, and best of all no high California state taxes!
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
Great advice I wanted to hear now if I could only get that 11 grand plasma pioneer plasma i stood in front in Best Buy out of my head and finally settle for the panny 42
 
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