32HX42 vs. 32HX41? New model a downgrade?

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by David_Rivshin, Aug 20, 2002.

  1. David_Rivshin

    David_Rivshin Second Unit

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    So I was all set to go with Panny's new 32HX42, but after doing some more research things got more complicated. According this this post http://www.hometheaterforum.com/htfo...hlight=%2AHX42 The HX42 models have the following new features:
    1) 3D Y/C filter
    2) 10-bit 60MHz A/D-conversion image-processing (said to eliminate false-contouring),
    3) increased bandwidth from 20 to 30MHz
    4) 8-bit PIP signal processing
    5) digital horizontal edge correction
    6) improved line doubler
    7) selectable (turn-off option) scan velocity modulation
    8) discrete remote codes, direct input selection, and video input labeling.
    PIP I could personally care less about since I'd never use it. The defeatable SVM sounds good. I could have sworn the HX41's already had 3D Y/C filters and discrete codes for everything. And the rest just seems like really minor improvements.
    So first question, which of the above are actually improvements from the HX41, and how much will they matter?
    Now the real crux of the matter: the HX42's apparently don't do anamorphic squeeze on 480i/p inputs, according to every source I've read. However the HX41's apparently do!
    So the $64,000 question, which would look better on anamorphic DVDs, an HX41 with the squeeze on, or the HX42 without the squeeze? Or would it probably be about a wash?
    PLEASE! if anyone happens to think/know that the HX42's do the squeeze on anamorphic 480p inputs, speak up. That would save me alot fence-sitting.
    For some background, I'll probably be using E* satellite in the near future, and watch DVD's maybe once a week or so, but am definitely picky about image quality when I do. And before anyone says anything, yes, these are the only two sets that I have a choice between. My entertainment furniture's TV shelf is only 35.75" wide, and the 32HX's are the best quality sets that will even come close to fitting.
    Of course I still have to go out and see if I can find someone who has 32HX41's left for sale. The silver lining is that they should be a few bucks cheaper than the 32HX42's by all rights....
    Thanks in advance everyone,
    -- Dave
     
  2. Bob S

    Bob S Extra

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    David,

    First off, I don't have an answer for you. But I am curious about something in your post. You say that your entertainment center opening is 35.75" wide and that the Panny is the best quality 32" set that will fit.

    What made you discount the Sony 32HV600 (35 3/8" wide) and the Toshiba 32HF72 (just under 35" wide)? The Sony does the squeeze automatically on 480i/p while I believe the Tosh does the squeeze manually (via button on the remote) on 480i/p.

    Just wondering...

    Bob
     
  3. David_Rivshin

    David_Rivshin Second Unit

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    Bob,
    My reasoning was that there needed to be room for a hand on either side of the TV. The entertainment center (Gusdorf 31704) has side walls along the TV space, and it's placed just a few inches from the back wall so there's no way for a person to get in back to help with TV installation.
    Seeing as any 32" flat screen TV weighs around 165lbs, it didn't seem like a good idea to tilt the TV into place from the front, but it should be lifted and set flat down. If you have a better way of installing the TV which wouldn't require clearance on either side then I'm all ears [​IMG] Of course, removing it at a later date is going to be a pain in any event....
    -- Dave
     
  4. John-Miles

    John-Miles Screenwriter

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    Well since its a tight fit anyway why not place a stand in front lay the tv down do all your hook ups and then slide the tv into place. the other thing is if your cables are not long enough the unhook them from your receiver and such to get the length you need then once the tv is in place reach around and hook up the cables to the other equipment.

    there is always a way around tight fits, i know i had to solve the same problem with my computer, the shelf it was in was just slightly bigger than my case and reaching around with my arm jammed betweent he case and the desk was a pain, so i cut a panel out of the side... not pretty but i dont care its convenient.
     
  5. ThomasL

    ThomasL Supporting Actor

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    David, my space is only 36 inches or so wide which the same conditions as yours, and I was thinking of doing exactly what John mentioned - if/when I upgrade to a 32 inch set. I was going to simply take another existing tv stand and put the tv on that (or some other support) and then hook up everything up and then slide it into place. Your point about getting to the back if things aren't working is a good one but I think that problem will exist with any 32 inch set you buy [​IMG]
    cheers,
    --tom
     
  6. David_Rivshin

    David_Rivshin Second Unit

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    John, Tom,
    My mention of getting behind the TV wasn't so much to do cable hookup (I'm pretty good at doing that by feel, and there should be enough room for that), but for help in physically placing the TV in the opening. 165lbs is a alot of weight, and not easily managed, especially in tight places.
    The idea of building a temporary TV shelf infront of the entertainment center is interesting. However I'm not sure if it would then be possible to slide the TV back into the opening. Again I'm afraid the weight would simply be too much. Perhaps some of those magic furniture moving pads would be of some use, however. Has either of you (or anyone else) actually managed such a feat?
    With the 32HV600 there would basically be no room for fingers on the side of the TV during installation. With a 32HX* there would be about 1.5" on either side, which seems like it'd be a big help.
    But back to the original question, anyone have any opinion of whether the HX41 be a better choice than the HX42?
    Thanks for the words of advice guys [​IMG]
    -- Dave
     
  7. ThomasL

    ThomasL Supporting Actor

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    David, your post is reminding me of a commercial someone mentioned to me. A couple is buying a new tv set and when they bring it home they find there is a small amount of space still free on the sides in their A/V center, so they decide that they can get a *bigger* set [​IMG]
    I have not had any experience moving a 32 inch set. I think your worry is perhaps damaging the furniture when you place it in there if you have to slide it. Even with my 27 inch, I gave up on that. Since they can't be seen, the bottom of where the tv set sits in all scratched up from me sliding the set back and forth. I figure it's nothing that a little sanding and refinishing wouldn't fix anyhow and if there is always a tv in there, who will ever see it? [​IMG] My wife also thinks a few nicks and gouges give furniture some character so I can't lose on that regard. So, my idea was simply to set up some temporary scaffolding/staging in front of the opening and then when it is all hooked up, simply have you and some of your buddies lift/push/slide it into place. This had been my plan for fitting a bigger set - but if it's foolhardy then I may be stuck with a 27 inch since the furniture is not going anywhere anytime in the next 20 years. [​IMG]
    As for the difference between the sets, I have not used them and have only seen the earlier model. But I will say that if the new one doesn't do an anamorphic squeeze on 480i/480p material than that is a huge deficiency in my opinion. Showing a dvd movie in its native 16x9 shape with all vertical lines of resolution going toward filling the 16x9 space is going to look better than a downconverted 4x3 letterboxed image. But I have heard people say on 27 inch sets that they have not seen a difference (this was with a Sony dvd player + Sony Wega analog set - where they switched back and forth between 4x3 downconverted and 16x9 squeeze mode. I wasn't there so I can't comment on their "findings") but I think once you get up to 32 inches, the 33 percent better resolution and lack of artifacts is going to make a difference.
    cheers,
    --tom
     
  8. David_Rivshin

    David_Rivshin Second Unit

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    Tom,
    A Circuit City salesman assured me that their installers would fit the Sony into my entertainment center as long as it would physically fit.... Not sure I trust a salesman so much, but I'll ask around more about that. I gave up on the idea of having buddies install it for me after I helped my father install his onto an open TV stand. Sprained backs are not worth the $40 to have someone else install it [​IMG] Now, if only I could just take off of those stupid side speakers I could probably fit a 36" TV.... stupid consumer electronics [​IMG]
    As for damaging the furniture, that's somewhat in the back of my mind. I'm going to be putting down a 3/4" piece of hardboard ontop of my TV shelf to keep it from snapping in half. It's only 1/2" MDF, which is slightly bending under the weight of a 27" Trinitron, so I wasn't confident it'd hold a 32" flatscreen [​IMG] I don't particularly care if the hardboard get's chewed up in the processes, actually. I was really wondering if the TV would slide at all, but having pushed one around in the store alittle yesterday I think it might be OK.
    I completely agree that the lack of anamorphic squeeze on 480p the HX42's is quite strange. I honestly don't quite believe Panasonic would be that stupid. I'm going to bring an anamorphic DVD to BB or CC this weekend and have them hook up a progressive DVD player to an HX42. This is something I have to see to believe. If it doesn't do the squeeze then I think I'll do a test on my father's Sony, and see how much of a difference I notice at my 10' viewing distance.
    Why can't life be simpler? [​IMG]
     
  9. ThomasL

    ThomasL Supporting Actor

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    David, the fact that the current state of television is not simple is the reason I'm still using my 2 year old 27A40 NTSC-enabled [​IMG] Toshiba. Two years ago, I gave my mom our older 25 inch Sharp and decided to upgrade. At the time, HDTV-ready sets were still extremely expensive from my perspective so I opted for a temporary holdover with component and Svideo inputs since the Sharp only had one set of composite inputs and no audio out which I also wanted. The set was a noticeable improvement for dvd viewing (after I fixed a grayscale issue) and is a nice "temporary set" that can be moved somewheres else when the next upgrade occurs. But when will that happen? That is where it gets unsimple [​IMG]
    We only have analog cable in my area anyhow so the main reason for a HDTV-ready set would be 480p with the 16x9 squeeze option for dvd viewing. So, here I am still waiting to eventually make the jump. But at this point, the longer I wait, the more I will get for my money (except for the weight hopefully [​IMG] ) and eventually, the cable companies will begin piping HDTV down their cables - unless they want to lose more and more business to satellite setups. But with so many things still in flux, I've decided to continue to be patient. Also, doing some measuring and some calculations, I've determined that while most 32 inch 4:3 HDTV-ready sets will fit tightly into my space and give me a 40 percent bigger picture on both 4:3 and 16:9 material, I'm not sure I really want that. Right now, 4:3 material is big enough on the 27 inch from about 8 feet away. I'm afraid any bigger will just more of the artifacts and interference that is in the signal. I do realize that once channels are DTV-ized that they will look a lot better. But then I also calculated that the current crop of 34 inch 16x9 sets will actually fit more easily into my space and give me about the same size 4:3 image (equivalent to a 28 inch 4:3 set with black/grey bars on the sides) and about a 90 percent bigger with a 16:9 signal. That latter fact is the real selling point for the 16:9 set since I want my best source (dvd) to have the biggest picture. So, this has led me to be more patient, continue lurking in forums like this [​IMG] and see if 16:9 HDTV-ready sets will continue to drop in price over the next few years.
    cheers,
    --tom
     
  10. Bob S

    Bob S Extra

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    David,

    Interestingly, Crutchfield has now added the 32HX42 to their site and they list one of the features as
     
  11. Bob S

    Bob S Extra

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    Well, I got a reply from Crutchfield, and they basically say that they haven't actually looked at or tested the 32HX42 yet. They based their description on the specs given to them by Panasonic. They said to check back in a couple weeks and they would know for sure if the HX does the squeeze on 480i/p or not.

    Interestingly, the Panny 32HL42 is now also on their site for $100 more. In its description, they are even more explicit about the 32HL42 doing the squeeze:

     
  12. David_Rivshin

    David_Rivshin Second Unit

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    Last Friday I went to my local Best Buy to test out the anamorphic squeeze on the 36HX42 they had on display. In the adj2 menu there is an option for aspect ratio control, which was greyed out on 480i input material. When we hooked up a DVD player sending an anamorphic 480p signal the option was still greyed out. So it seems like everyone was indeed right about the HX42 sets [​IMG]
    I did notice that Crutchfield explicitly, and in great detail, lists the HL42's as doing anamorphic squeeze. I would guess that Panasonic needed something other than better speakers to distinguish the HL's from the HX's, so they threw in anamorphic squeeze on 480 inputs. As much as I would dislike such a move, I would also understand the business case behind it. All these sets are cheaper than last year's, in any event.
    Now an interesting thing I think I read in a Usenet post was that maybe you can manually engage the squeeze on HX42 models in the service menu.
    Anyone know any other differences between the HL's and the HX's? I wouldn't mind the 32HL42, except that physically larger. Seems like it should fit in my entertainment center, but it would also move my center speaker up another 3/4", which I'd prefer to avoid seeing as it's high enough already [​IMG]
    And BTW, I talked with a crutchfield salesperson on Friday also to inquire about fitting a 35.4" TV into a 35.7" opening, and mentioned the lack of anamorphic squeeze on the HX42's. He didn't know anything about that, mentioning that their computer system didn't have detailed info about the set yet. Of course he was also surprised that Panasonic would leave such an important feature off a $1400 MSRP TV. Oh, and he seemed to say that if it'll fit, the delivery guys will get it in, if anyone was curious. (What I wouldn't do for an extra 5 inches in my entertainment center.... oh well...)
    -- Dave
     
  13. Brent Hutto

    Brent Hutto Supporting Actor

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    I wouldn't be surprised if the HL42 added back in the squeeze they took out during the so-called upgrade from the HX41->HX42. That's probably pretty standard marketing these days.
    I also wouldn't be surprised if they are using 810 lines instead of 1040 to do the squeeze. If so, Crutchfield's catalog copy is wrong when it was "all 480 lines".
    If it does a real squeeze (rather than an in-TV downconversion) then knowing this model was coming out could have saved me $400 versus the 36XBR800. Then again, in six months there'll be something better, faster, cheaper still. All I know is Fellowship of the Ring sure was fun on my new TV! [​IMG]
     

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