42" Fujitsu Hitachi Pioneer Panasonic Plasmas, Opinions?

Discussion in 'Displays' started by Brett Hump, Oct 2, 2005.

  1. Brett Hump

    Brett Hump Auditioning

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    Hello Everyone! Please be kind, this is my first post.

    After much research, education in digital TV terminology, sifting through the LCD vs Plasma debate and wading through the industry hype, I'm in a "comfortable place" for purchasing a HDTV. I'm OK with plasma, and 42" is my optimum size.

    I'm comparing the higher end 42" plasmas -
    Fujitsu Plasmavision, Hitachi, Panasonic & Pioneer Pure Vision. At least these are the brands I've filtered down as the cream of the crop.

    My understanding is that Fujitsu & Hitachi co-own, with other partners, their own plasma manufacturing plant along with a R&D department. The argument goes, they would reap the rewards of the latest technology in their products. The AVM-II (advanced video movement)second generation video processing engine is supposed to be kick ass.

    My problem is that I have not heard or read much from reviewers & owners about Fujitsu's 42" plasma. Specifically, ANYONE OUT THERE actually own a Fujitsu P42HA40US or comparable model number? How do you like it. What's your story on how you came to buy this TV?

    I'd welcome similar stories on the other TV's I've mentioned - 43" Pioneer Pure Vision PDP 4350HD
    - 42" Panasonic TH42PX25
    - 42" Hitachi HDX61 or 62
    I've probably got the model numbers wrong. It seems they are fluid, depending on what country you're in and/or the model year/month.
     
  2. Arthur S

    Arthur S Cinematographer

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    From what I have heard, Fujitsu is getting out of the plasma business. They were way overpriced to begin with.

    Do yourself a favor and get a hold of the November 2005 issue of Consumer Reports and you will see who has the best 42 HD.
     
  3. Brett Hump

    Brett Hump Auditioning

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    Where did you hear, Fujitsu is getting out of the plasma business?
     
  4. Arthur S

    Arthur S Cinematographer

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    Late this week I can provide you with more specific information to help you make your choice.

    I would suggest that you keep an open mind. You are in for some real surprises.
     
  5. Rick Westfall

    Rick Westfall Stunt Coordinator

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    Hmmm...nice teaser Arthur. Since I'm in the market for the exact same TV, I'm anxiously awaiting your post later this week.

    Rick
     
  6. Brett Hump

    Brett Hump Auditioning

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    Go for it Arthur S. WHERE did you hear/read that Fujitsu is getting out of the plasma business?

    Actually, I do have an open mind as far as brands of plasmas are concerned. I'm not fixated on Fujitsu, however I'm not going to discount it either.

    I don't have an open mind as far as type of TV; for my particular application the flat panel would work great. I'm not interested in TVs that take up alot of real estate, and I don't have the logistics or money for a quality projector either. LCDs are an option however I'm interested in plasmas at the moment.
     
  7. Arthur S

    Arthur S Cinematographer

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    Surprise number 1.

    The Hitachi HDX61 was the lowest rated of 10 HD plasmas tested by Consumer Reports in March 05.

    The most important thing you need to do is to get your hands on the November 05 issue of Consumer Reports. Spend $5 or $6 dollars and learn what you need to learn.

    Fujitsu is a boutique brand that is quickly fading into obscurity. Way overpriced and not the top performer. You are caught up in mystique.

    I would guess you are shopping in boutiques.

    In fact, Sony had the best 42 inch plasma, the KDE-42XS955. If you can find one it would be a much better purchase than a Fujitsu.

    More to come later in the week.
     
  8. RickER

    RickER Producer

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    I keep reading Sony is getting out of the Plasma business in the US, but will still sell them in Japan.
     
  9. Arthur S

    Arthur S Cinematographer

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    Yes, Sony is getting out of the plasma business in the US. As with all plasma purchases, an extended warranty on a Sony plasma is a very good idea. Sony has sold a lot of plasmas and will be supporting them for at least 7 years.

    In the meantime, Fujitsu is just going to fade away. Whether they pull the plug or sales just dwindle to insignificant numbers, they are a bit player and it is only getting worse.
     
  10. Brett Hump

    Brett Hump Auditioning

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    Hey Arthur S.
    Where are all these unsubstantiated opinions coming from? You must of been dissed by Fujitsu or something. My original post asked for comments from people who have purchased or researched a 42" plasma Fujitsu or Hitachi or Panasonic, or Pioneer.

    I'm not asking for pronouncements from on high, just experiences with these brands.

    P.S. Your Consumers Report reference named Sony as one of the best HDs (strange time to leave the U.S. market with that kind of status) and the Toshiba was named the BEST BUY.
     
  11. Rick Westfall

    Rick Westfall Stunt Coordinator

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    Arthur,

    Is there some big release occurring at the end of the week? What's up with all the teasers?
     
  12. KenWong

    KenWong Stunt Coordinator

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    I rarely comment in threads, but wow, Arthur- you seem to be a really huge fan of sony and very disgusted by fujitsu. That's where I would disagree with you. To the OP, I will only comment on the plasma that I have experience with- that I SELL at work... Sony does throw a pretty good picture but for its price, but I think there are far better. And to use "Consumer reports" as a guide I think is the huge mistake, this is a home theater forum, and I think if you suggested Sound/vision, the perfect vision, that would be a lot better.

    But here's my opinion to you Brett:
    Sony XS955, pretty good picture, but for the price, (retail wise) I would not recommend it. The non-elite pioneer is much better in picture quality than the Sony, and it's only $500 more, and you get a extra inch- Pioneer comes in 43,50,61. Then there are the pioneer elite which is one of the best pictures on the market, hands down. Deep blacks, natural color, Monday night football on the elite is amazing.

    So now we get to the Fujitsu plasma. To be honest, and not to attack your knowledge [arthur] but have you ever even seen the TV in person or have you clung onto your consumer report. First hand, Fujitsu is one of the highest rated plasma, and the AVM chip- gimmick or not, makes the set look incredible. The color is not exagerrated, and probably the truest that I've seen on any plasma. Usually they are top notch next the the pioneer elite, and they might be overpriced but when you're looking for the best, I highly recommend them. And so what if they're inside of a boutique or high end AV shop, isn't the best/high end stuff usually in these little shops.

    I've only seen the 37' panasonic plasma and my god it's a gorgeous picture, very natural colors as well and picture quality was very good, it wasn't the best though, but better than any costco set. Panasonic seems to be a very good "economical" set, great picture for the price.

    And I wish I could comment on Hitachi, but I don't deal with them personally, though I heard good things about them.

    So to sum it up for you Brett, I'm not going to comment on the number of inputs each one has, or the physical look of each set. Or if one company is "fading away." Picture quality on the Elite and Fujitsu are top, IMO. Regular Pioneer picture is very good as well, and so are panansonics. Last in the category are sony's, they're averaged price, and you get a good picture from them.

    One note of advice though, I would also take a look at Mitsubishi's line of plasmas. I personally think Mits makes a great television set, though I'm not too wild about their 1080p DLP nor their cars, their plasmas been pretty good and they just dropped in price. -Ken
     
  13. Jonathan^DO

    Jonathan^DO Auditioning

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    Arthur.... i question your knowledge and i feel you shouldn't speak anymore about the topic unless it can be substantiated.
     
  14. Brett Hump

    Brett Hump Auditioning

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    Thanks Ken
    I have seen the Fujitsu, Pioneer Elite,"non-Elite" & Panasonic higher end models. The Hitachi seems to be the smaller brother of Fujitsu(crude analogy). I have not looked at Sony closely because my general impression (right or wrong) was that the company wasn't seriously in the game. Perhaps just riding on their reputation, rather than being one of the companies driving the plasma market. Arthur, I'm actually open minded enough to go check out Sony.

    Of those brands I've seen, I would agree with you Ken, the Panasonic in particular was very good at displaying subtle tones of skin colour & texture. Its my understanding the Panasonic & Fujitsu have SOME of the most advanced video processing in the business.

    I wouldn't like this thread to get bogged down on Arthur S. comment about shopping at "boutiques", however, since Ken responded on this point, I will too. I'm a small business guy (you know, part of the silent majority that drives the economy - that government & big business likes to sh*#t on). H-E-L-L-O Arthur! Those "boutiques" are SMALL BUSINESSES too. They service a niche market quite well. The whole world can't be turned into one great big chain store, although this is your proposition.
    As well, the "boutiques" are not immuned to price competition. They feel the chain stores breathing down their necks.
     
  15. Joseph DeMartino

    Joseph DeMartino Lead Actor

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    Oddly enough the business about Sony getting out of the plasma business came up in another thread where it was pointed out that Sony doesn't make plasma panels. They just put their brand on panels manufactured by - wait for it - Fujitsu. So much for vast inside knowledge and news coming "later this week" [​IMG]
     
  16. Brett Hump

    Brett Hump Auditioning

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    Mr Demartino
    Touche! I like the "wait for it" part.
     
  17. Arthur S

    Arthur S Cinematographer

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    I know some of the Sony panels came from NEC. I will check, but I'm confident that Sony used no Fujitsu panels. If you can provide a reference for your statement, please do so.

    Ok, I see now, you have no reference beyond some thread. Still, feel free to knock yourself out to provide anything even semi-official stating that Sony ever used Fujitsu panels. Good Luck.
     
  18. KenWong

    KenWong Stunt Coordinator

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    NEC is a huge OEM manufacturer and does make panels for a few companies including Sony. However, seems like Sony does use the glass screen from Fujitsu, or may have at one point. But why does this matter to the original reason of this thread? I don't know. Arthur, may I know what plasma set you own or do you even own the Sony XS955? Also, have you ever compared picture qualities between the Sony and the 43' Pioneer Elite or Fujitsu, I mean- can you honestly say that the Picture on the Sony was actually better than the Elite and Fujitsu?

    Hey Brett, how is the search and research going anyways? http://www.avdeals.com/classroom/whomakesplasma.htm

    Here's a list of OEM manufacturers, don't know the validity of it but seems pretty accurate.
    -Ken
     
  19. Brett Hump

    Brett Hump Auditioning

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    Thanks Ken for the web reference on OEM manufacturers. Kinda answers to Arthur S. nicely. Although, we could be conspiracy theorists, and say this info is corporate dis-information (if one were so inclined).

    It seems the Fujitsu sales guy was correct, in that, the 42" is manufactured by Fujitsu, in partnership with Hitachi. I'll have to check out this fact that the Hitachi is the EXACT same plasma as its more expensive cousin Fujitsu. Can anyone else comment on this?

    As far as my search & research is going, I'm still open to brand choice. The 42" plasma is the pivotal factor here in this thread. The aforementioned brand names still appear to be at the head of the class for this size & type of digital TV. There are plenty of posts about the 42" Panasonic. For good reason.

    Anyone out there actually own a Fujitsu, Hitachi, Pioneer Elite or higher end 42" plasma? Let me know how you like it. Would you do the deed again? Any regrets? After having your baby for awhile, any suggestions to the manufacturer?

    The price range among them is reasonable (when compared to each other). The prices are insane & very untraditional, when compared to the standard CRT prices we've been used to for decades. I believe, that's why we are reading reviews that say the CRT is the best value for the money; however so is a Honda Civic compared to a Mercedes. I think some people mistakenly compare different TV technologies by price only, and it is a useless exercise.

    The other interesting issue is 720p vs 1080p. It looks like the 1080p sets & infrastructure is just now coming on stream & for the foreseeable months (?), years (?) ahead. Countless threads & industry chatter is speculating the timeline. Anyway you look at it, the 1080p is becoming a standard sooner or later.

    There are a couple of models out there for those people who have deep pockets & like the "bleeding edge" of the 1080p format. I'm definitely not going to wait for 1080p. That's for my next TV purchase in 2015.

    Right now, my interest is feedback from people who actually own these TVs, not the endless pontifications, opinions and industry/consume hype. Also, I'm somewhat interested in comparing features & video processing of these models, without getting into a debate about how is smarter than the other.
     
  20. Arthur S

    Arthur S Cinematographer

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    Brett

    Have you recovered yet from finding out that the Hitahci Director Series, (highly touted by the boutiques that sell them), HDX61 was the lowest rated of 10 42 inch HD plama by CR in March 05?

    This simply points out that whatever homework you had done up to the time of your initial post was, um, in its formative stages.

    If you as a small business person wish to throw your money at overpriced, overhyped, brands/models, in stores with huge overhead, by all means spend away.

    There are still a few die hards over at the AVS Forum, who have good things to say about Fujitsu, in addition to the ones who have been complaining that their Fujitsus have died right after the warranty expired. In fact, Panasonic gets about 60% of the discussion at AVS and their members actually got it right this time. Panasonic is the performance leader. I have seen the 42 inch Sony and it was just stunning, however, as Sony is leaving the plasma market it just makes sense to go with the Panasonic TH-42PX50 for about $2,800.

    Please feel free to disregard CR, the only source of professional testing that accepts no advertising, has a lot of video engineers, uses trained panels of viewers comparing the image to professional studio monitors. And compared 11 panels at one time. One of the moderators here, Gregg Loewen did an ISF calibration for CR and had nothing but glowing comments about their facilities and staff.

    Instead, follow the advice of Ken and check out Sound and Vision, that rag is now 65% advertising.

    Or do we add advertising to the list of things that make this country great?
     

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