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Best place to review PLASMA TV...

Shagga

Diamond Member
Nov 9, 1999
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I have been given the go-ahead to buy a Plasma Screen by the little wifie and before I make any brash decisions wanted to make sure I was buying the right product...

This is the TH42PA20BS which I am considering at the moment. £3,500 is my max. However, if i drop to the 37" version I can save a £1,000. Would I regret getting a 37" plasma over the more standard 42"?

Thanks all... :)
 

Analog

Lifer
Jan 7, 2002
12,755
1
0
I would stay away from Plasmas entirely. My company makes materials that go into these displays, and from the aging tests we've done, it is clear that they fade over time, and will experience burn-in. I think DLP may be a better alternative, but you'll have to ask some other members here on that one. I can only tell you what I know about plasmas.
 

spacejamz

Lifer
Mar 31, 2003
10,369
683
126

suggest that you also consider an LCD tv (Panasonic, Hitachi and Sony have some nice ones)....Plasmas will lose their brightness in about 5 or so years....
 

Shagga

Diamond Member
Nov 9, 1999
4,421
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Thanks all. I am aware of the inherent problems with Plasma per se and the issue of "burnr in". I understand "burn in" will only be an issue if a symbol of some sort is constantly displayed on the screen, like you get with certain satelite channels.

I read a quote from somewhere and it stated that you would have to sit on the same channel night and day for it to burn in which is unlikely...(I hope)

I have thought about LCD and done quite some research into it. Unfortunately, most of the 32" LCD screens I've seen are of a poor quality. The smaller versions have got better over the years, I know as I already have a 15" LCD and they are a lot better nowadays.

DLP is not an issue at the moment. I don't know much about it other than it's not really a flat panel...

Keep um coming guys... ;)
 

kt

Diamond Member
Apr 1, 2000
5,381
262
126
Originally posted by: Shagga
Thanks all. I am aware of the inherent problems with Plasma per se and the issue of "burnr in". I understand "burn in" will only be an issue if a symbol of some sort is constantly displayed on the screen, like you get with certain satelite channels.

I read a quote from somewhere and it stated that you would have to sit on the same channel night and day for it to burn in which is unlikely...(I hope)

I have thought about LCD and done quite some research into it. Unfortunately, most of the 32" LCD screens I've seen are of a poor quality. The smaller versions have got better over the years, I know as I already have a 15" LCD and they are a lot better nowadays.

DLP is not an issue at the moment. I don't know much about it other than it's not really a flat panel...

Keep um coming guys... ;)
Unless you are going to hang the TV on the wall, I don't see why you shouldn't give DLP a chance. It's not that much thicker than a LCD or plasma screen. Its weight is less than half of a similar size normal projection TV. The one I am looking at from Samsung is 50" and weigh about 80lbs. Not bad for a 50" screen. If you want more information on DLP technology a good starting point is at TI's site.
 

CFster

Golden Member
Oct 16, 1999
1,903
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Originally posted by: spacejamz
suggest that you also consider an LCD tv (Panasonic, Hitachi and Sony have some nice ones)....Plasmas will lose their brightness in about 5 or so years....
Plus they're hideously expensive to fix. You might as well buy a new one.

Also, they run hot as hell.

 

spacejamz

Lifer
Mar 31, 2003
10,369
683
126

Haven't seriously looked at them, but the Hitachi and Sony 50" lcds looked pretty good when I passed by them...

I wouldn't be interested in a LCD under 40" (IMO)...
 

Apex

Diamond Member
Oct 11, 1999
6,511
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www.gotapex.com
Great choice. Panasonic's latest generation ED panel (which that plasma is based on) is quite easily the best one on the market. It has the best contrast (both rated and real world) by far. Fujitsu makes some good choices as well, but they tend to be much more costly, and your performance per £ ratio is not as good with the Fujitsu's.

I'd personally suggest not going down to a 37" unless your viewing distance is very very VERY short.
 

Shagga

Diamond Member
Nov 9, 1999
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Originally posted by: Apex
Great choice. Panasonic's latest generation ED panel (which that plasma is based on) is quite easily the best one on the market. It has the best contrast (both rated and real world) by far. Fujitsu makes some good choices as well, but they tend to be much more costly, and your performance per £ ratio is not as good with the Fujitsu's.

I'd personally suggest not going down to a 37" unless your viewing distance is very very VERY short.
Is the resolution of only 852 x 480 pixels VGA going to be a problem? I mean there are a number of 1024 x 768 panels available and are advertising better clarity. However, not so good contrast ratio's. I appreciate 852 x 480 is the "widescreen" resolution so will the images be scaled to the 1024 x 768 and/or have the black bands around the perimeter?

Thanks again. ;)

Unless you are going to hang the TV on the wall, I don't see why you shouldn't give DLP a chance. It's not that much thicker than a LCD or plasma screen. Its weight is less than half of a similar size normal projection TV. The one I am looking at from Samsung is 50" and weigh about 80lbs. Not bad for a 50" screen. If you want more information on DLP technology a good starting point is at TI's site.
I'll have a look at DLP and see whats available.

Originally posted by: CFster
Originally posted by: spacejamz
suggest that you also consider an LCD tv (Panasonic, Hitachi and Sony have some nice ones)....Plasmas will lose their brightness in about 5 or so years....
Plus they're hideously expensive to fix. You might as well buy a new one.

Also, they run hot as hell.
Yeah, they are expensive to fix if the panel goes awol and buying a new one is the only option really. LCD's apparently are as cheap as £50 to get the back light replaced if that should go which is excellent. But, for a 42/50" LCD in the UK will cost more than my house and again the 32" LCD's I've seen up and running are a better colour definition but the image sux. (Watching DVD is better though)

:)
 

Apex

Diamond Member
Oct 11, 1999
6,511
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www.gotapex.com
The 1024x768 are definitely better for HDTV, but for DVD resolutions, the ED resolution ones are just a bit better. 852x480 is the native resolution of DVD's on fixed pixel square pixel devices.

The pixels on 1024x768 plasma TV's are not square, they're rectangular. The panel itself is 16:9.

What resolution is most of your source material?
 

Shagga

Diamond Member
Nov 9, 1999
4,421
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71
Originally posted by: Apex
The 1024x768 are definitely better for HDTV, but for DVD resolutions, the ED resolution ones are just a bit better. 852x480 is the native resolution of DVD's on fixed pixel square pixel devices.

The pixels on 1024x768 plasma TV's are not square, they're rectangular. The panel itself is 16:9.

What resolution is most of your source material?
Okay, HDTV, forgot about that. In idiot's terms what is this and is it/will it really be required. But to answer your question as best I can, most of my material is based on std DVD resolutions, however, I like future proof. If you can get that with technology if you know what I mean.

:)
 

konichiwa

Lifer
Oct 9, 1999
15,077
1
0
I also recommend you take a look at some of the mini-projection TV's (DLP etc).

As far as I can see the only reason you should get a plasma over one of the thin rear-projection screens is if you are ACTUALLY hanging it on a wall or if you want a conversation/art piece.
 

Apex

Diamond Member
Oct 11, 1999
6,511
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www.gotapex.com
Originally posted by: Shagga

Okay, HDTV, forgot about that. In idiot's terms what is this and is it/will it really be required. But to answer your question as best I can, most of my material is based on std DVD resolutions, however, I like future proof. If you can get that with technology if you know what I mean.

:)
For standard TV & DVD, the ED panels will definitely be the best, especially when you take money into account. HDTV resolutions are better on the higher res panels, but the difference isn't huge. It all comes down to money, and I don't know the price differential there.
 

Shagga

Diamond Member
Nov 9, 1999
4,421
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71
Decisions decisions. Have been looking at the Panasonic TH42PA20BS a little further and it would appear that access to the scart/s-video sockets etc are via a panel on the "front!". This is a complete no no for me. It will look terrible. I couldn't understand why most of the images which show the TH42PA20BS on a stand do not show a DVD player on the shelves below. This would be aweful to look at with all those potential wires all over the place.

However, I have picked yet another panel which is more expensive but has a good spec and certainly more future proof. It's the Pioneer PDP434HDE and it looks the biz.

Anyone know of any reviews of this any where as in "What Plasma" they quote "Quite Simply the finest plasma screen on the planet"... which has got to be a good thing.. :)
 

Apex

Diamond Member
Oct 11, 1999
6,511
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www.gotapex.com
The PDP-434HDE is a good panel too, with higher resolution (1024x768, marginally better for HDTV, marginally worse for SDTV, EDTV, & DVD). NEC's colors are good too. Contrast is not nearly as good as the Panasonic panel, so the shadow detail is less and black level is higher.

BTW, yes the TH-42PA20U/P has connectors in the front (under a panel), however, this is what it has on the back (US model):

1 DVI
2 Component (YPbPr or RGBHV)
2 S-Video
3 Composite
2 RF Antenna
1 RF Split output (from antennas)

So, you can simply ignore the front inputs and use the back.

TH-42PA20U/P Operating Manual
 

Shagga

Diamond Member
Nov 9, 1999
4,421
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71
Originally posted by: Apex
The PDP-434HDE is a good panel too, with higher resolution (1024x768, marginally better for HDTV, marginally worse for SDTV, EDTV, & DVD). NEC's colors are good too. Contrast is not nearly as good as the Panasonic panel, so the shadow detail is less and black level is higher.

BTW, yes the TH-42PA20U/P has connectors in the front (under a panel), however, this is what it has on the back (US model):

1 DVI
2 Component (YPbPr or RGBHV)
2 S-Video
3 Composite
2 RF Antenna
1 RF Split output (from antennas)

So, you can simply ignore the front inputs and use the back.

TH-42PA20U/P Operating Manual
Thank Apex. I was looking for the manual but with no luck. I'l dl it and have a look. Cheers

:beer:
 

AgaBoogaBoo

Lifer
Feb 16, 2003
26,096
0
0
I would advice away from it right now because the technology isn't there. You WILL notice burn in within a few months or maybe a year or two, but then the warranty will be out so it's not worth buying now. What kind of area will this go in? You could get a projector. If not, I'd reccomend holding off the purchase and saving the money. I'm pretty sure you'll have something you can pay off like credit card bills, car payment, etc. with that money.
 

MazerRackham

Diamond Member
Apr 4, 2002
6,572
0
0
DLP is the way to go for sure at this point. Non-projection LCD displays are too small/expensive, and CRT rear projection is pretty much dead. Your other choice could be LCD rear projection, but if you're in the market for plasma you should be able to afford a DLP set, which is probably better. I haven't been too impressed with the plasma displays I've seen, but the DLPs have had outstanding image quality... Samsung makes the best at this point.
 

Koing

Elite Member <br> Super Moderator<br> Health and F
Oct 11, 2000
17,092
2
0
As a side note this guy is in the UK and there are not 'many' DLP RPTV available.

HDTV is a no no as we won't have any HD sources until blueray dvd stuff or what not comes out. We don't get any HD OTA stuff or will. This country is using digital instead. Looks pretty good to me and 'practically' DVD quality on the better channels. Of course you get the odd channels with crap bit rates and look pretty blocky at times.

I'd go with either the Pany of the Pio. Both great models. Get the 42" not the 37"!

The fade isn't going to be 'noticable'. Your CRT tv also fades. Yes it does fade over time like a CRT but did you notice the change? Probably not as it was gradual and slow.

Burn in is not an issue if you don't leave it on the same channel over 24hr period or so. Even then it will fade with different programs on over time. Just don't leave it on the same channel and go out for the weekend.

LCD has problems with sport stuff and pans. Plasma does not.

http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/forumdisplay.php?s=&forumid=40

This place will help.

This place has more uk specific stuff. The other place is more American based:

http://www.avforums.com/frame.html?http://www.avforums.com/forums/forumdisplay.php?s=&forumid=82

The UK 42PA20B doesn't have DVI if I remember correctly.

Koing


 

Shagga

Diamond Member
Nov 9, 1999
4,421
0
71
Originally posted by: Koing
As a side note this guy is in the UK and there are not 'many' DLP RPTV available.

HDTV is a no no as we won't have any HD sources until blueray dvd stuff or what not comes out. We don't get any HD OTA stuff or will. This country is using digital instead. Looks pretty good to me and 'practically' DVD quality on the better channels. Of course you get the odd channels with crap bit rates and look pretty blocky at times.

I'd go with either the Pany of the Pio. Both great models. Get the 42" not the 37"!

The fade isn't going to be 'noticable'. Your CRT tv also fades. Yes it does fade over time like a CRT but did you notice the change? Probably not as it was gradual and slow.

Burn in is not an issue if you don't leave it on the same channel over 24hr period or so. Even then it will fade with different programs on over time. Just don't leave it on the same channel and go out for the weekend.

LCD has problems with sport stuff and pans. Plasma does not.

http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/forumdisplay.php?s=&forumid=40

This place will help.

This place has more uk specific stuff. The other place is more American based:

http://www.avforums.com/frame.html?http://www.avforums.com/forums/forumdisplay.php?s=&forumid=82

The UK 42PA20B doesn't have DVI if I remember correctly.

Koing
Great post Koing and very helpfull. :) The point about DLP is correct. In fact I don't even think you can get this technology in the UK yet. A friend of mine who lives in the States has just bought a 53" Samsung version and although not being used to it's full potential he says it's pretty good. One thing I have learnt is that peoples opinions are subjective.

The Fade and Burn-in wasn't concerning me too much but it's nice to hear others opinions on the subject.

Is it fair to say that DVI is what I want. Is the analogue signal that bad? A few reviews I've read say that terrestrial TV which is not digital is not very good at all. However, the Pioneer makes a better job of producing clarity.

The only issue for me is what Apex mentioned ...

The PDP-434HDE is a good panel too, with higher resolution (1024x768, marginally better for HDTV, marginally worse for SDTV, EDTV, & DVD). NEC's colors are good too. Contrast is not nearly as good as the Panasonic panel, so the shadow detail is less and black level is higher.
Would this be your take on the Pioneer also?

Many thanks. ;)
 

0roo0roo

No Lifer
Sep 21, 2002
64,868
83
91
Originally posted by: Shagga
Originally posted by: Apex
The 1024x768 are definitely better for HDTV, but for DVD resolutions, the ED resolution ones are just a bit better. 852x480 is the native resolution of DVD's on fixed pixel square pixel devices.

The pixels on 1024x768 plasma TV's are not square, they're rectangular. The panel itself is 16:9.

What resolution is most of your source material?
Okay, HDTV, forgot about that. In idiot's terms what is this and is it/will it really be required. But to answer your question as best I can, most of my material is based on std DVD resolutions, however, I like future proof. If you can get that with technology if you know what I mean.

:)
nothings required... but hdtv is sweet. 1920x1080........ 6x detail of a dvd. makes that plasmas res look rather pitiful..which is why real hdtv plasmas cost more:)
 

Shagga

Diamond Member
Nov 9, 1999
4,421
0
71
Originally posted by: 0roo0roo
Originally posted by: Shagga
Originally posted by: Apex
The 1024x768 are definitely better for HDTV, but for DVD resolutions, the ED resolution ones are just a bit better. 852x480 is the native resolution of DVD's on fixed pixel square pixel devices.

The pixels on 1024x768 plasma TV's are not square, they're rectangular. The panel itself is 16:9.

What resolution is most of your source material?
Okay, HDTV, forgot about that. In idiot's terms what is this and is it/will it really be required. But to answer your question as best I can, most of my material is based on std DVD resolutions, however, I like future proof. If you can get that with technology if you know what I mean.

:)
nothings required... but hdtv is sweet. 1920x1080........ 6x detail of a dvd. makes that plasmas res look rather pitiful..which is why real hdtv plasmas cost more:)

Sorry, I suppose I should have been a little clearer. I know nothing is required but I do insist on quality. Will DVI give me better quality?
 

Apex

Diamond Member
Oct 11, 1999
6,511
1
71
www.gotapex.com
DVI definitely gives you the best quality for a plasma set, no question about it. However, how much better depends on the source and the plasma. They do vary a bit. Going native rate through the DVI input is going to be ideal.

The reason SD, ED, and DVD look better on the 852x480 sets is because that's the native resolution, or closest to it. There's the least scaling necessary at this resolution.
 

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