Plasma Advice...EDTV vs. HDTV

Discussion in 'Displays' started by MartyP, Nov 10, 2003.

  1. MartyP

    MartyP Stunt Coordinator

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    I was considering taking the plunge and buying a 42" plasma television. I am a little confused about EDTVs vs. HDTVs. I know that EDTVs don't have the native resolution that HDTVs have. I guess I'm wondering how important that is for watching standard cable TV and DVDs. I can't see paying so much extra each month for digital cable when so little programming is in HD. I also don't want to spend thousands on a plasma set that will be obsolete in 3 years.
    I've read about reliability issues with plasma. Would it be wise to wait for the larger LCDs (42")
    Can anyone give me some advice?
     
  2. Steve_L_B

    Steve_L_B Stunt Coordinator

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    It largely depends upon your viewing distance. My wife and I have a 42" ED Panasonic plasma. We compared it side-by-side with the HD version and determined that at about 10 feet, you could barely tell the difference as far as resolution is concerned. The ED display also exibited a slightly brighter picture with better apparent contrast and we definitely preferred it for SD/Cable and DVDs. At our viewing distance of 10-11 feet, HDTV also looks terrific on the Panny ED.

    I definitely recommend that you compare the two yourself. In general, if you are going to sit at 8 feet or less, go with the HD display, it will look sharper because of its smaller pixel structure. At 10 feet or more, the ED display should look great and will save you a couple of thousand dollars. Between 8-10 feet, it's a tougher call because at this distance, some people begin to notice the pixel structure of the ED display.

    Regards,
    Steve
     
  3. MartyP

    MartyP Stunt Coordinator

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    Thanks for your input, Steve.
    Our viewing distance will be 11'. I guess it'll be important to make sure that I'm 11' feet from the monitor when viewing in a store to get an accurate idea of what it would look like in our family room...
     
  4. Bill-T

    Bill-T Extra

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    If you have no intention of ever watching high def for the life of the set, save some bucks and get the ED set. Just remember ED IS NOT HIGH DEFINITION!
     
  5. DaveGTP

    DaveGTP Cinematographer

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    *Sigh* The Panny ED Plasma is VERY popular. You don't have to have no intention of "ever watching high def". For a lot more input, check out the avsforum.com plasma forum. Best source for a lot of 1st person information about the sets.
    Many people have viewed the Panny sets downconverting HD to it's native resolution, and were unable to tell the difference between the HD and ED sets beyond a certain amount of feet (I generally hear 8-10ft). Some people could tell. Depends on your eyes, I guess.
    And the ED sets are supposed to be a touch better for DVD, and better for SD sources as well - less upconversion has to be done on the images.
    And you're still better with a Superior ED Panasonic (with it's best-in-class for plasma black levels) and excellent picture, than you would be with one of the ALIS based HD plasmas.
    I'll be getting my ED Panny plasma someday. The only other 42incher near a decent price is the Pioneer 43", but for the extra $1500-$2000, is a few more lines of resolution worth it? For Hi-def TV that will still look very good, and only when you get closer to the TV?
     

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