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Panasonic TH46PZ85U plasma initial thoughts and why I chose it over LCD (1 Viewer)

Steve Schaffer

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Just an addendum to my previous post.

A couple of months ago the Sears store where I work set up an endcap display to promote a series of SoundStage BluRay concert discs. The display consists of a Samsung BluRay HTIB connected to one of their 650 series 50"Plasma sets, running a special promo disc that has a bright white SoundStage logo constantly visible in the lower left corner of the picture. This was run 12 hours a day for a couple of months and has resulted in some burn in that is noticeable when the set's switched to the regular store feed and is diplaying a solid light colored picture. The set is in full torch mode.
So it is still possible to burn one in but ya gotta work at it.

Anecdotally, all but a couple of the 7 Panasonic plasma sets we carried are no longer available even for order, they've been selling so well.
 

LanceJ

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I've also been checking out HDTVs for a family member, and the SD-on-HDTV quality issue is definitely an...um....issue.
htf_images_smilies_smile.gif
But similar to your own findings, to my relief I've found out that in my opinion SD dvds can look really nice on a flatscreen set.

The last HDTV I "auditoned" was a 50" Panasonic plasma, cannot remember model # but it was priced at @$1800, being fed a signal from a Panasonic BD player. Fortunately the store had shut down the 3 million watt overhead mercury vapor lamps in the TV portion of the store so they weren't a problem, and by doing so created a pretty good simulation of a home living room at dusk with no tablelamps turned on. I calibrated the TV by eye & shut off any enhancement modes & VNR systems.

I brought along Attack Of The Clones, Titan A.E. and the Superbit version of The Fifth Element. Standing about 10ft back AOTC & TFE looked really good! We could tell they weren't HD but nevertheless, they still looked detailed and the colors were great. There was a vaguely "soft" look to them but there were no jaggies or other obvious artifacts that detracted from the viewing experience i.e. the suspension of disbelief thing was still suspended. :D Titan A.E. didn't look as good though, mostly because of the artifiacts seen on the edges of certain objects, sort of like jaggies but really more what is seen on many Youtube videos and lo-res .jpeg photos. But unless we were looking for them, they weren't a problem.

I am really glad most of the HDTVs I've tested have done a good job with SD material, and now look forward to buying my own such (plasma) TV as soon as I am able to. I will be buying a BD player and will be watching OTA HD programs, but most of my media library is of SD form - heck I still watch VHS tapes :eek: - and many of my favorite TV shows were shot on SD videotape & so will never be in HD form (whether via OTA or on disc).
 

Subavision212

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Edward W. Suba Jr.
I have had my PZ850U up and running for the last three days and it is one amazing display. I can't imagine what it will look like once I get it over 100 hours and get it calibrated. It certainly has a very film-like quality picture, almost velvety if that makes sense. After I got my Sony BDP550 set up with HDMI connection and 1080/24p and watched Horton and Surf's Up I think my mouth hung open the whole time. I've been watching a Toshiba 65 inch RPTV over component for the past six years that had a great picture after calibration so the blacks on the Panny don't have the same punch but they are still very nice and in the ballpark. Great contrast and the image is razor sharp.There is even a dramatic improvement in my cable HD. I looked at a number of displays and did my research and glad I got this one. The set is very easy to use and set up. but boy what a picture. That's my two cents since I've been watching this set and for me, it's a real winner.
ed
 
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Ron,

Just picked up the TH46800U a couple of weeks ago. Thanks to the new models coming out, I got this at an $800 (CAD) discount. I have to say that it was your post about the 85U that pushed me 'over the edge' between this set and a Sony LCD. The price, of course, was a large contributing factor, but I told (re: begged) my wife that I was more concerned about the PQ above all else. I had the sound covered, but I was fence sitting forever on which type of display I was going to purchase. I had narrowed it down to the TH4685U that you got, and a Sony LCD which was around the same price. When the A/V store where my brother-in-law works nabbed a few of the last '08 TH46800Us to hold over until the new models arrived, I jumped on it.

I'm delighted with this display. Coupled to the Sony BDP-S550 Blu-ray player, the image can't be touched at this price. If you get the chance, check out Baraka (Blu-ray). Your jaw will drop.
 

Ronald Epstein

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Mark,

Congrats!

Very happy to hear that you are satisfied with your Panny.

I am still amazed at the picture every time I take a look at my
Mom's TV. For her, it's the best thing that has happened to her
daily dose of entertainment in a long time.
 

Ray Chuang

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Ronald,

Since the time you had a chance to get that Panasonic plasma display, I had a chance to see Samsung's new UN55B7000 LED-backlit LCD panel.

All I can say is that the UN55B7000's picture quality was nothing short of astonishing, to say the least. :eek: It's the first time I've seen an LCD panel have plasma-like deep blacks, and once you switch on the 120 Hz mode even very fast motion is very smooth, too. Indeed, when I saw the Blu-ray version of The Chronicles of Narnia: Prince Caspian on the UN55B7000, the picture was so astonishing that I could see foreground and background details with great clarity in terms of color and contrast that most other "conventional" LCD panels miss--I almost wondered if I was watching output from a theatrical-grade digital movie camera.

I've actually seen the TH46PZ85U and while I do agree that the picture quality is outstanding with excellent contrast and smooth motion, unfortunately you can also feel the heat coming out of the panel if you're anywhere close to the panel itself, the big bane of plasma TV's in general.

Given Samsung's success with their new LED-backlit flat-panel TVs, it will be VERY to see how much better these new LED-backlit panels will get in the next few years until OLED technology matures.
 

Nick Graham

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Ron, your recommendation on this TV was right on the money. I ended up going for the 46" instead of the originally planned 42", and it's probably the best investment in my home theater I've ever made. The first night I hooked it up, I popped on one of the IMAX scenes from The Dark Knight blu-ray, and just about had an out of body experience.
 

Ronald Epstein

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Nick,

Good to hear.

I went against sound advice in buying a plasma for the room it
was going to be placed in (which has a lot of windows and would
cause reflection problems).

The good news is, the reflection isn't a huge issue --- especially
when I see how beautiful the picture quality is when watching a film
in darkness.

Panasonic makes great plasma displays.
 

googus

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I just pick up a Panasonic TC P50SI and all I have to say what a great set...

Also I got it from Best Buy with a Samsung P1600 Blue ray with three years no interest. Also I have employee discount web site offer from Panasonic and Best Buy matched it and reduce their price buy close to 500 bucks. The set cost me only 1218.00 that is cheaper than the 47in visio LCD.
 

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