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Pionner 503 vs 1000???

553 Views 7 Replies 6 Participants Last post by  Jim Boden
I'm in the market for a 50" flat screen. I've done some research on this site and spent some time visiting stores and I've seen the Pionneer1000 in person and I'm blown away. What a great Pic. They also had a Sony and Panasonic there but the Pioneer 1000 was much nicer. The only item that is better is the Runco (but who has 29K to blow?)

I've heard about the 503 and how it's much less expensive than the 1000 and it's as good as the 1000. Any thoughts??
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There are numerous threads on this; the panels are identical, except that the 1000 has (1) a longer warranty, (2) a different frame, and (3) comes with a video card installed. The 503 requires the PDA5002 video card, but unlike the video card with the 1000, it has a DVI port.

Note that the 1000 prices have come down some; while the 503 is cheaper (and can be had mail order from places like Dell with the video card), the narrower gap may suggest to some that the longer warranty is worth the $$$.

But the key point here: the plasmas themselves are otherwise identical. One is marketed to consumers, one is not, FCC Class B vs. FCC Class A.

That's it.

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Actually both are FCC Class B (PDP-503CMX)
How about using avideo scaler? Do either sets need them. Also how much for the video card on the 503?
deagle - i was rather unimpressed with the internal scaler. if you want to go with an internal scaler, conventional wisdom says fujitsu is your best bet.

the 5002 card will set you back not quite $500. if you want DVI you have to have it.

i run an htpc as my dvd player and scaler/processor - talking DVI to the panel. i think it's killer, but htpcs can be a real pain the a$$, so know what you're getting into.

the latest key digital leeza (an htpc, but done up properly) is a nice alternative. i've considered dumping my htpc and jumping to leeza (but no vcr outputs; and only one sdi in).

is the warranty worth it? that's for you to decide. if you buy a 503 and want the black urishi frame, there are many of them available, so that wouldn't be a problem for you.

good luck.

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I saw the Pro1000 side by side with the Panny. Using the infamous Star Trek Insurrection DVD the scaler looked fine to me on both of these offerings. I saw the Fujitsu separately and it looked fantastic. I completely admit that you can probably get a better picture on the Pioneer with a Key Digital Leeza but for my money it's not $5K better. The thing is, you have to decide. Bring some movies and give it a test drive. (I also admit that I would get a Leeza if $5K was an insignificant amount of money to me.:D )

Also, be careful about the combination of a Pioneer plasma and a Faroudja NR scaler. There is another thread around that was saying it locks in at 60hz refresh rate and appears to have tearing on camera pans. The folks were saying it is a very bad combination. I don't know if they have found a solution to it yet. Just a heads up.

I'm in the market too. I keep waffling back and forth between the Fujitsu and the Pioneer. Can't make up my mind! The good news is, the longer I wait, the lower the prices go :)

To answer your other question, the video card on the Pioneer costs about $450 retail. We've seen it on the web in the upper $390 range. Hold the phone! Here it is for !!$219!!??


Good luck to you.

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Thanks for the input guys. I guess you really don't need a scaler.

I'm the guy who started the thread about the compatibility problem between the Pioneers and the Faroudja NRS at:

http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showt...readid=136516. In my opinion, the NRS problem notwithstanding, the Pioneer does benefit from a scaler. With the NRS, the picture has a lot more detail and depth and colour saturation is much better.

Having said that, the Pioneer doesn’t really look bad without it, either. Given my druthers, I’ll stick with the NRS if Faroudja comes up with a solution for the problem. If they don’t and I have to return the NRS, I’m not sure I’ll bother with another scaler. The Leeza sounds good from what I can see on this forum, but it’s a lot more expensive. There are also others, such as the newly announced Centrestage models from Focus Enhancements, which seem to be priced very competitively, somewhat less than an NRS. They are new, however, and haven't been reviewed by anyone yet that I can see.

I suggest you try the plasma first without a scaler and come to your own conclusions. What one person thinks is great may not be true for someone else. I'm very happy with my Pioneer 503CMX but lots of people on this forum will argue that the Panasonic or Fuji or whatever else may be better. Beauty is in the eye of the beholder.
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