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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
First off, apologies for starting yet another "pick me a TV" thread, especially as a Noob member.


That said, I have a fairly narrow application, price range, and environment for my new TV (first TV in a decade!) I would appreciate any advice forum members wish to offer based on their research. I have done my best and believe I would be most satisfied with a 40" Plasma. Here we go:


This TV will be a Cinematic TV used almost exclusively for viewing films of every genre.

No TV, no internet.

Content may be Blue Ray, DVD (with HD upscale) or streamed from a Western Digital hard drive interface to HDMI (usb would be a bonus, but not essential). Of course, I want to view HD content. Duh.

I will sit at whatever distance necessary to get the best picture, my budget will determine this! Not my room!

The room will be completely dark, glare not an issue.

Features, Remote, PiP, all that stuff doesn't matter (so far).

We are renters, so the TV will have to move in the future. Possibly several times.


Budget: ~$500 (sorry!)


In order of importance:


- PICTURE QUALITY.


The most frustrating thing about this process is that there are far too many "intangibles" that can't be measured in lines of resolution or hz. I would rather (it seems) have a 37" TV @ 720 than a 40" or 42" TV @ 1080 if the bigger screen has an inferior picture.


Could this (above) be the case?

Am I stuck making a judgment call at a big box retailer?

Is it always foolish to go with an off-brand?

Is it always foolish to put blind faith in a "trusted" brand like Sony, Samsung, or Sharp?

I worked at Gateway back in 2002 when we first introduced Plasma and they were frighteningly fragile, is this still the case?

Are Plasmas still susceptible to magnetic fields?


I extend a thank-you to the forum members who have posted such rich advice in the LCD vs. Plasma forum and for taking the time to read of my plight!
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by L1ft /forum/post/0


First off, apologies for starting yet another "pick me a TV" thread, especially as a Noob member.


That said, I have a fairly narrow application, price range, and environment for my new TV (first TV in a decade!) I would appreciate any advice forum members wish to offer based on their research. I have done my best and believe I would be most satisfied with a 40" Plasma. Here we go:


This TV will be a Cinematic TV used almost exclusively for viewing films of every genre.

No TV, no internet.

Content may be Blue Ray, DVD (with HD upscale) or streamed from a Western Digital hard drive interface to HDMI (usb would be a bonus, but not essential). Of course, I want to view HD content. Duh.

I will sit at whatever distance necessary to get the best picture, my budget will determine this! Not my room!

The room will be completely dark, glare not an issue.

Features, Remote, PiP, all that stuff doesn't matter (so far).

We are renters, so the TV will have to move in the future. Possibly several times.


Budget: ~$500 (sorry!)


In order of importance:


- PICTURE QUALITY.


The most frustrating thing about this process is that there are far too many "intangibles" that can't be measured in lines of resolution or hz. I would rather (it seems) have a 37" TV @ 720 than a 40" or 42" TV @ 1080 if the bigger screen has an inferior picture.


Could this (above) be the case?

Am I stuck making a judgment call at a big box retailer?

Is it always foolish to go with an off-brand?

Is it always foolish to put blind faith in a "trusted" brand like Sony, Samsung, or Sharp?

I worked at Gateway back in 2002 when we first introduced Plasma and they were frighteningly fragile, is this still the case?

Are Plasmas still susceptible to magnetic fields?


I extend a thank-you to the forum members who have posted such rich advice in the LCD vs. Plasma forum and for taking the time to read of my plight!

For your price point I can recommend a good 32" LCD from say LG/Sony/Samsung.


Plasma does not get magnetic interference and never has. For a good plasma say 42" 1080p you are looking more around $650+ from Samsung or Panasonic.
 

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For film based content, most viewers prefer the look of plasma.


Currently the smallest size plasma sold in the US is 42". Panasonic, Samsung and LG all offer a wide selection of units at this size.


When it comes to your price point, you will be basically limited to entry level 720p units. Nothing wrong with any of these. However, at this price point, none that I am aware of have any type of anti-reflective coating. This means you should not have the unit directly across from a window with direct sunlight.


If you are sitting at least 8' - 10' from the set the resolution will be immaterial. For entry level sets, I am not sure if there is one to be recommended over the other. You can probably base your selection on final price plus any aesthetic considerations. Unless something has changed, Panasonic usually has better reliability ratings than eithr LG or Samsung.


If you can afford about $350 more than your stated ceiling of $500 ($850 total), an excellent choice for cinema is the Panasonic TC-P42G25. The G25 series has an excellent anti-reflective coating plus THX color processing which is probably the best out of box experience for color and gray scale for a consumer TV. It is also 1080p which would resolve the full picture from your Blu-Ray player or any downloaded content on the WD.


I am sure there are some good choices out there for LCD also, but don't know much about this size and price point.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by L1ft /forum/post/19514075


First off, apologies for starting yet another "pick me a TV" thread, especially as a Noob member.


That said, I have a fairly narrow application, price range, and environment for my new TV (first TV in a decade!) I would appreciate any advice forum members wish to offer based on their research. I have done my best and believe I would be most satisfied with a 40" Plasma. Here we go:


This TV will be a Cinematic TV used almost exclusively for viewing films of every genre.

No TV, no internet.

Content may be Blue Ray, DVD (with HD upscale) or streamed from a Western Digital hard drive interface to HDMI (usb would be a bonus, but not essential). Of course, I want to view HD content. Duh.

I will sit at whatever distance necessary to get the best picture, my budget will determine this! Not my room!

The room will be completely dark, glare not an issue.

Features, Remote, PiP, all that stuff doesn't matter (so far).

We are renters, so the TV will have to move in the future. Possibly several times.


Budget: ~$500 (sorry!)


In order of importance:


- PICTURE QUALITY.


The most frustrating thing about this process is that there are far too many "intangibles" that can't be measured in lines of resolution or hz. I would rather (it seems) have a 37" TV @ 720 than a 40" or 42" TV @ 1080 if the bigger screen has an inferior picture.


Could this (above) be the case?

Am I stuck making a judgment call at a big box retailer?

Is it always foolish to go with an off-brand?

Is it always foolish to put blind faith in a "trusted" brand like Sony, Samsung, or Sharp?

I worked at Gateway back in 2002 when we first introduced Plasma and they were frighteningly fragile, is this still the case?

Are Plasmas still susceptible to magnetic fields?


I extend a thank-you to the forum members who have posted such rich advice in the LCD vs. Plasma forum and for taking the time to read of my plight!

If you really want to enjoy a movie 46inch is the minimum.


Do some saving then buy yourself a 500$/1000$ 50inch 1080p Plasma,you wont regret it.


If you want PICTURE QUALITY and CINEMATIC this will bring you close (a TOP-Plasma or TOP-LCd would be better,minimum 2000$).


Go to the Plasma forum and start athread over there http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/forumdisplay.php?f=167 ,ask for the best 500$/1000$ 50inch 720p or 1080p Plasma.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by L1ft /forum/post/19514075


Am I stuck making a judgment call at a big box retailer?

Is it always foolish to go with an off-brand?

Is it always foolish to put blind faith in a "trusted" brand like Sony, Samsung, or Sharp?

I worked at Gateway back in 2002 when we first introduced Plasma and they were frighteningly fragile, is this still the case?

Are Plasmas still susceptible to magnetic fields?

1. Most big box retailers have a 30 day money-back guarantee so worse case scenario is you setup the tv at home and don't like it, you can always return or exchange it. Just be sure to ask about the return/exchange policy before you buy.

2. I think its pretty safe to say that brands like Dynex, Westinghouse, etc aren't going to give you the absolute best picture quality. They are budget sets and obviously not meant for someone that demads the highest standards in PQ.

3. Likewise, buying a tv from a mainstream brand like Sony, Samsung, etc does not guarantee you will get great PQ. The best way is to narrow the field to some models that fit your budget then do some online research and see what owners are saying.

4. No, plasma tvs are quite robust. That doesn't mean you should abuse it or that the glass won't crack if a Wii remote gets accidentally thrown at it, but I wouldn't call them fragile (though they certainly aren't tanks like CRTs are)

5. If you are referring to the ability to place a center channel or other speaker next to the tv and not have it distort the image, then the answer is I do not believe plasma (or LCD for that matter) suffer from that (unlike CRTs).


Take a look at the 46" 720p Panasonic TC-P46C2 at sears.com. Its currently on sale and within your budget restrictions. Not sure what kind of PQ it produces but do some research and see what other owners are saying about it.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Thanks everyone. This is very helpful. I appreciate these answers. Back in 2002, the Plasmas were EXTREMELY fragile, just from jarring them they'd break. Also, we had speakers next to the screens and after about six months or so we could see distinct color distortion on the sides of the screen of these Plasmas.


Yes, specuvestor, the 600hz of Plasma favors film and 120hz in LCD is out of my budget.
 

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Are all the 600Hz Panasonic plasmas 24fps-capable? My P50G10 is (at 48HZ, which does flicker some) but I can't tell by reading the specs.


Maybe the OP doesn't care, but I prefer 48Hz with some flicker to a 2:3 pulldown. Also, as I've been away from all the plasma threads for a while - is there concern over the rising black levels still, or has that all been "corrected" for new models?


Fred
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by L1ft /forum/post/19519079


Thanks again.

Viera at Sears

I saw an advertisement for the 50 inch Panasonic Plasma for $100 more than your posted 46 inch at Sears. And all the Panasonic Plasmas are 600 Hz subfield drive, which is nothing like 120 hz in LCD, just so you are clear. Plasma is inherently good with showing motion without blur. 120 Hz is to reduce motion blur compared to 60 Hz LCDs.


Oh yeah, the store I saw the advertisement for the 50 inch 720P Plasma for $100 more than the 46 is Boscovs.

http://www.boscovs.com/StoreFrontWeb...Number=7010500
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
I'm still reading of "concern", I'd too like to know about the black levels issue and if it has been resolved.


I do wish to avoid 2:3 pulldown, this pretty much has me sold on Plasma, which I thought avoided this issue at 600hz.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by HopefulFred /forum/post/0


Are all the 600Hz Panasonic plasmas 24fps-capable? My P50G10 is (at 48HZ, which does flicker some) but I can't tell by reading the specs.


Maybe the OP doesn't care, but I prefer 48Hz with some flicker to a 2:3 pulldown. Also, as I've been away from all the plasma threads for a while - is there concern over the rising black levels still, or has that all been "corrected" for new models?


Fred

You are right. 24p capable HDTV is relatively new and I am assuming the OP will check that his plasma has this capability.


48Hz is 2:2 pulldown while 600Hz subfield is more a marketing gimmick against LCD 120/240Hz for J6P to compare against, and nothing to do with pulldown. Marketing aside 24p plasma is better for film with 2:2 3:3 or 4:4 pulldown, though panny 4:4 pulldown seems to have some problems as some threads suggest.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·

Quote:
Originally Posted by spyboy /forum/post/19519751


And all the Panasonic Plasmas are 600 Hz subfield drive, which is nothing like 120 hz in LCD, just so you are clear. Plasma is inherently good with showing motion without blur. 120 Hz is to reduce motion blur compared to 60 Hz LCDs.

Actually, I'm not clear on this. I assumed 600hz was 5x better than 120hz.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by L1ft /forum/post/19521449


Actually, I'm not clear on this. I assumed 600hz was 5x better than 120hz.

No, plasma's 600hz subfield drive and LCD's 120hz or 240hz refresh rates are not analagous to each other. They each refer to two very different things. LCD utilizes 120hz or 240hz technology to help improve the poor motion resolution that is inherent to most LCDs. Plasma has no real need for such technology as it naturally handles motion/fast-moving images quite well. However, many consumers don't realize that so plasma manufacturers started to tout plasma's 600hz subfield drive as a marketing strategy to counter all the buzz about 120hz/240hz refresh rates on LCDs.


Here is a link to get you started on what plasma's subfield drive is referring to:

http://hometheater.about.com/od/tele...d_Drive_Is.htm
 

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Both links are rampant with misinformation. The only competent information in both is that 600Hz subfield drive refers to the compiled refresh rate miltiplied by the pulse rate and that it is used solely as a marketing tool. Aside from that they make no sense explaining why it is used and how it relates to motion



Makes you wonder where they get there information from.
 

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I often see a VERY nice Panny 720p 50" plasma for just a few dollars over your budget, I would heartily endorse it. I have one of it's 42" brothers in my mix of plasmas and LCDs and it preforms very well. With the holiday deals coming up I know you will find it well under 600.


Performance wise I have no issues, and in some cases I feel it outperforms my pro-calibrated Samsung, particularly on SD content.
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
My wife played the "trump" card at BB the other day. Damn tvs were playing sample video that included text and she freaked out on the jagged look the 720 plasmas offered. I tried explaining to no avail.


The good news is, our budget is slightly increased to accommodate 120hz LCD and that puts us squarely with the Vizio E420VL. The M420NV sells for $630 but appears to have no PQ advantages over the E420VL, just more inputs/outputs.


Not only is this set 100,000:1, 120hz, but the upgraded warranty from Costco seals the deal. It's about time our membership started paying for itself.


My only concern is that my (rather expensive) Yamaha receiver was the LAST one to come without HDMI, and I've heard that running audio over RCA causes lag issues. That would truly suck.


I/we haven't looked at this first-hand yet, so that would be the only deal breaker. That, or some last-minute advice from this forum!
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by L1ft /forum/post/19545034


My wife played the "trump" card at BB the other day. Damn tvs were playing sample video that included text and she freaked out on the jagged look the 720 plasmas offered. I tried explaining to no avail.


The good news is, our budget is slightly increased to accommodate 120hz LCD and that puts us squarely with the Vizio E420VL. The M420NV sells for $630 but appears to have no PQ advantages over the E420VL, just more inputs/outputs.


Not only is this set 100,000:1, 120hz, but the upgraded warranty from Costco seals the deal. It's about time our membership started paying for itself.


My only concern is that my (rather expensive) Yamaha receiver was the LAST one to come without HDMI, and I've heard that running audio over RCA causes lag issues. That would truly suck.


I/we haven't looked at this first-hand yet, so that would be the only deal breaker. That, or some last-minute advice from this forum!

Don't worry about the audio issues. Just use an Optical Audio cable and you should be good to go. Go HDMI straight to your TV, then go Optical from your DVD/BD player to your receiver. Make sure you tell your player to output sound from your Optical rather than your HDMI and you should be fine.
 
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