Panasonic Dropping Plasma Business

Discussion in 'Displays' started by Ronald Epstein, Oct 10, 2013.

  1. Ronald Epstein

    Ronald Epstein Administrator
    Owner

    Joined:
    Jul 3, 1997
    Messages:
    46,644
    Likes Received:
    4,490
    Real Name:
    Ronald Epstein
  2. Ronald Epstein

    Ronald Epstein Administrator
    Owner

    Joined:
    Jul 3, 1997
    Messages:
    46,644
    Likes Received:
    4,490
    Real Name:
    Ronald Epstein
    Wanted to make a quick comment on the above...

    Plasma has always been my preferred choice when it comes to displays.

    I don't think you can get better black levels anywhere. My opinion.

    I was having lunch with colleagues a few weeks ago and I mentioned I was
    interested in buying a 4k display in the next year or two.

    The response I received was that I probably would not be able to tell the
    difference between my current plasma and a 4k display --- especially
    considering how close I sit to it (within 8 feet).

    The advice continued: "buy the best plasma TV you can get before they
    stop making them." Panasonic was the immediate suggestion. Their plasma
    displays come very close to the now defunct Kuro displays.

    Although I currently own an LG 3D plasma (now 3 years old), I think I am
    going to grab one of the last Panasonic VT60 displays before they are no
    longer available.

    I have seen 4k displays. They look wonderful. However, I can't really say
    for the moment that there would be a beneficial difference for me considering
    the size range I want (65") or for the viewing distance that exists in my home
    theater.

    I have no problem holding on to technology that will soon pass. I am very
    fond of plasma and I have no problem keeping that technology for the next
    few years while we wait for the price of everything else new to come down.
     
  3. Type A

    Type A HW Reviewer
    HW Reviewer

    Joined:
    Apr 7, 2007
    Messages:
    800
    Likes Received:
    44
    Location:
    Portland Oregon
    Real Name:
    Ty
    With those kind of losses I guess you cant really blame them. Does suck tho. I take comfort in the fact that my 58" and 65" Pannies will likely still be going strong when OLED gets to reasonable prices (one would hope anyway). 4k, and LED for that matter, can kiss my plasma's motherboard.
     
  4. Charles Smith

    Charles Smith Extremely Talented Member
    Supporter

    Joined:
    Jun 27, 2007
    Messages:
    5,214
    Likes Received:
    1,178
    Location:
    Nor'east
    Real Name:
    Charles Smith
    I don't understand why plasma fell off most consumers' radar in the first place. A sudden rampant fanaticism for the lighter and thinner screens?
     
  5. schan1269

    schan1269 HTF Expert
    HW Reviewer

    Joined:
    Jul 4, 2012
    Messages:
    17,112
    Likes Received:
    899
    Location:
    Chicago-ish/NW Indiana
    Real Name:
    Sam
    Samsung and Vizio producing brilliant "confuse the consumers with numbers and total bullshit" marketing.

    What also didn't help was Pioneer playing "we make the best TV and we'll take it to the grave...before we lower the price tag."

    Hitachi can be blamed a bit as well with their Director Series. They tried to eat some of Pioneer's lunch...in the end both starved to death.

    Panasonic's "upper brass" deserves a permanent vacation as well. Maybe Walmart should hire all of them so Walmart can implode.

    Seriously...who made these two decisions right on top of each other...

    1. Give DuPont 2 years worth of profits to advance OLED.
    2. Next month buy Kuro.

    Really?
     
  6. Todd Erwin

    Todd Erwin Cinematographer
    Reviewer

    Joined:
    Apr 16, 2008
    Messages:
    2,861
    Likes Received:
    217
    Location:
    Orange County, CA
    Real Name:
    Todd Erwin
    Ron, I would recommend looking at the ZT60. This model uses the Kuro black engine that Panasonic purchased from Pioneer, and definitely has deeper blacks that the VT60. At my store, we have the VT60, ZT60, and Samsung F8500 grouped together, and the ZT is simply amazing. Although most non-videophile customers gravitate to the Samsung, as it is the brightest plasma on the market. Gotta love Samsung for their moth to the flame mentatlity.
     
  7. Gregg Loewen

    Gregg Loewen Video Standards Instructor, THX Ltd.
    Insider

    Joined:
    Nov 9, 1999
    Messages:
    6,373
    Likes Received:
    32
    Location:
    New England
    Real Name:
    Gregg Loewen
    i really like the ST series. Once tweeked out you can't tell the difference between the VT and ZT (unless perhaps they are being viewed side by side).
     
  8. RolandL

    RolandL Producer

    Joined:
    Dec 11, 2001
    Messages:
    3,440
    Likes Received:
    819
    Location:
    Cromwell, CT
    Real Name:
    Roland Lataille
    When I worked in retail, plasmas were a hard sell. Most consumers did not like the reflections you could see on the glass screen.

    I have a 42 inch LG Plasma in my bedroom that looks wonderful as long as the lights are not on.
     
  9. Gregg Loewen

    Gregg Loewen Video Standards Instructor, THX Ltd.
    Insider

    Joined:
    Nov 9, 1999
    Messages:
    6,373
    Likes Received:
    32
    Location:
    New England
    Real Name:
    Gregg Loewen
    hi Roland.
    the problem is now....same issues with LCD / LEDS. Manufacturers have added the same type of gloss reflective surface.
     
  10. Ronald Epstein

    Ronald Epstein Administrator
    Owner

    Joined:
    Jul 3, 1997
    Messages:
    46,644
    Likes Received:
    4,490
    Real Name:
    Ronald Epstein
    If the difference is nominal between the VT60 and the ZT60 I will go for the latter.

    That display should last me for the next 5 years till OLED displays become the norm
    and drop down to consumer prices.
     
  11. Robert Crawford

    Robert Crawford Moderator
    Moderator

    Joined:
    Dec 9, 1998
    Messages:
    29,449
    Likes Received:
    4,815
    Location:
    Michigan
    Real Name:
    Robert
    I bought two Panny plasmas in the last 20 months so I'm very sad to read this news as I thought they gave me the best picture I'd ever viewed on a TV display I owned.
     
  12. Gregg Loewen

    Gregg Loewen Video Standards Instructor, THX Ltd.
    Insider

    Joined:
    Nov 9, 1999
    Messages:
    6,373
    Likes Received:
    32
    Location:
    New England
    Real Name:
    Gregg Loewen
    i think the VT60 is definitely the set to get!
     
  13. Jason Charlton

    Jason Charlton Ambassador

    Joined:
    May 16, 2002
    Messages:
    3,531
    Likes Received:
    395
    Location:
    Baltimore, MD
    Real Name:
    Jason Charlton
    This really is bummer news. I had tabbed the ST50 as the replacement for our ancient 32" CRT still in our family room. Had been putting off replacing the set because the current set is in a nice entertainment cabinet that will need to be replaced, too (it's always a domino effect...).

    The article mentions ending production in "early 2014" - any thoughts on whether or not we should expect any new models/stock to roll out between now and then, or do you think it's better to grab now before they're all gone?
     
  14. RolandL

    RolandL Producer

    Joined:
    Dec 11, 2001
    Messages:
    3,440
    Likes Received:
    819
    Location:
    Cromwell, CT
    Real Name:
    Roland Lataille
    Yes, my Sony KDL55NX810 LED has a glass screen but I don't see the reflections like the LG Plasma.
     
  15. schan1269

    schan1269 HTF Expert
    HW Reviewer

    Joined:
    Jul 4, 2012
    Messages:
    17,112
    Likes Received:
    899
    Location:
    Chicago-ish/NW Indiana
    Real Name:
    Sam
    That is because the NX810 features Sony's Polyglass. Which is anti-glare.Probably got lucky you bought that one instead of a 701/801. Were you even paying attention to the glass composition of the LCDs you were comparing?So comparing an anti-glare flat panel(regardless of LCD or plasma) to a non-coated flat panel (again, regardless of LCD or plasma) should never be done.

    Also Edge-Lit LCD should never be used for BD reviews. They have zero light conformity(which means there is no way to judge contrast) and their ghosting problems are legendary(means you can't judge sweeping scenes from "epic movies" such as Ben Hur)
     
  16. atfree

    atfree Cinematographer
    Supporter

    Joined:
    Jan 28, 2012
    Messages:
    2,840
    Likes Received:
    1,931
    Location:
    Boiling Springs, South Carolina
    Real Name:
    Alex
    I've owned 2 Panny plasma's for my primary TV viewing over the past 10 years. They were always the best reviewed sets for picture quality and I've loved their performance. Very sad.....

    IMO, plasma's fate is very similar to what we're seeing with blu-ray and physical media vs. streaming/online content......basically consumers, as a whole, simply don't differentiate between quality and convenience/price.

    Plasma's have always been more expensive that LED's/LCD's so you couldn't grab a 42" plasma for $400 at the local Big Lots.....but you could grab a off-brand LCD/LED for that price (or lower). Plus, LED's/LCD's in "torch" mode at the local store are very eye-catching vs. a plasma which is a more lifelike and realistic image. I was amazed a couple of years ago at a "Black Friday" sale at a local electronics store. I went at 4am to get a new laptop and people were lined up at the check-out with 65" off-brand LCD TV's that were selling for $500! I figure either the displays are now at the local dump or the owners are blind from having their retinas fried by the default torch-mode settings.

    Where I make the connection between plasmas and blu-ray/physical media is that the average consumer sees "HD" on Netflix and says "Oh, that's the same as blu-ray" when in actuality it isn't close.

    Unfortunately, the lowest common denominator usually wins out.

    Fortunately, I just bought an ST30 series 2 years ago and it is wonderful. It will last until OLED, which from all I read has the potential to be better than plasma, becomes readily available at a reasonable price.
     
  17. Kevin EK

    Kevin EK Producer
    Reviewer

    Joined:
    May 9, 2003
    Messages:
    3,035
    Likes Received:
    494
    I'm truly saddened to read this. My 65" Panasonic VT plasma is the best set I've ever owned. It's a truly remarkable picture. My thinking at this point is that I'll hang on to this TV and continue having it calibrated for at least another 10 years, which I had figured would be its life span in any case - perhaps even longer. By the time I have a need to buy something new, the market will presumably have something to at least get close to its quality.
     
  18. DaveF

    DaveF Moderator
    Moderator

    Joined:
    Mar 4, 2001
    Messages:
    17,499
    Likes Received:
    1,382
    Location:
    One Loudoun, Ashburn, VA
    Real Name:
    David Fischer
  19. Jim*Tod

    Jim*Tod Second Unit

    Joined:
    Jan 5, 2006
    Messages:
    494
    Likes Received:
    170
    Location:
    Richmond, VA
    Real Name:
    Jim
    I have had my ST30 for two years now and daily marvel at the picture quality. Nothing for me beats a well calibrated plasma.
     
  20. RolandL

    RolandL Producer

    Joined:
    Dec 11, 2001
    Messages:
    3,440
    Likes Received:
    819
    Location:
    Cromwell, CT
    Real Name:
    Roland Lataille
    The NX810 was freebie from when I was a salesman.
     

Share This Page