PDA

View Full Version : Advice needed on LCD vs Plasma




skorpien
Oct 7, 2009, 02:56 PM
Hi all,

I've been batting this idea of purchasing a new, larger screen TV for my living room and am needing some advice on which technology to go with. I've narrowed down my choices to two TVs, an LCD (LG 47LH55 (http://www.futureshop.ca/catalog/proddetail.asp?logon=&langid=EN&dm=DEBUG&sku_id=0770HDS0010121843&catid=)) and a Plasma (Samsung PN50B540 (http://www.bestbuy.ca/catalog/proddetail.asp?logon=&langid=EN&sku_id=0926HDS0010122395&catid=28399)).

I'm aware that LCD is the dominant tech, and I'm not wanting to get into the whole "Plasma is dead" debate, but I was wondering which of the two would be better for gaming. I've read that plasma has a near instantaneous response time, better colour reproduction, better contrast and that the burn-in issue has been resolved in the latest plasma models. However, I worry about colour fading and longevity. In essence, I want a set that will give me a great gaming and movie watching experience, but also one that will last a reasonable amount of time without significant decrease in quality.

I'm sure I'm missing more than a few facts, which is why I'm hoping you all will be able to lend your knowledge as well as your opinions. Everyone I talk to seems to have a negative opinion of plasmas, even though I keep reading online that it's unjustified. Any help would be greatly appreciated. Thanks in advance!



dhc
Oct 7, 2009, 03:16 PM
I spent SO much time on a similar dilemma earlier this year...

Long of the short is that I ended up going for a Panasonic Plasma. SD and HD broadcasts look great, DVD & BluRay look amazing. PS3 and XBOX - no issues at whatsoever. Would I buy another Plasma? No. Why? I'm so worried about image retention (burn) it drives me insane! You can't see any ghosting when there is colour on screen, but there is visible (albeit temporary) ghosting against the black.

Drives me mad, you may be of better stock :o

eddyg
Oct 7, 2009, 03:27 PM
I've had an nec plasma for 5 years and it has seen a lot of use. I have no issues with burn in. And would buy a plasma again because of the better blacks and softer picture than lcds.

Note that I bought a very expensive commercial grade plasma.
Cheers Ed.

skorpien
Oct 7, 2009, 03:53 PM
Thanks for the replies :)

dhc, so the ghosting/retention thing you see on your TV is temporary? You haven't seen anything that would suggest that there's been permanent damage done? I think I'll be okay with the ghosting if it happens on my set so long as I know it's not going to be permanently damaged. Also, this will probably be my last plasma as I'm sure OLED will be more affordable by the time I'm in the market for a new TV.

eddyg, do you mind me asking what make your plasma is? And where would I go about purchasing commercial grade plasma/what price would it be?

Also, can anybody comment on the quality of Samsung plasmas? I know LG is one of the best for LCD TVs, which is making me reluctant to go with another manufacturer, but since Pioneer is out of the running (for the most part), the closest highly recommended plasma manufacturer I came across was Samsung.

eddyg
Oct 7, 2009, 04:00 PM
Hi,

My Plasma is an NEC 42PV5 (very good in its day - would have been superseded by now).

Cheers, Ed.

dynaflash
Oct 7, 2009, 04:08 PM
fwiw, I have an older (albeit only one year older ) lg 42" lcd. I then a year later bought a 50" panny plasma ( one year ago ). Imo, the lg lcd has a better picture in the end but only by the slightest of margins. I do not notice better blacks on the plasma, as well i also detect no "ghosting" or burn in on the plasma. These days imo its a very fine sliver of difference in terms of picture quality and that is a toss up left to the individual viewer.

Now, ten years down the road ... who knows ?

Like most things ( including video encoder settings ;) ) I would let you're eyes be the judge and go the route that suits you.

bt22
Oct 7, 2009, 04:58 PM
skorpien,
i was curious if you have considered the LED LCD by Samsung. I am "told" it has the same picture qualities of the Plasma without the burn in issue. My original intention was to buy a plasma, but the local Circuit City and Best Buy's recommended i buy an LCD which i did... Samsung 52" 850 series. I have often regretted it mainly because i have just as much reflection on the screen as i think i would have with the plasma which they all said i should only buy a plasma for a room with no windows. i think i would consider the new LED if i was buying now. my 2 cents...

miniConvert
Oct 7, 2009, 05:01 PM
Panasonic make the really good plasma TVs these days AFAIK. Used to be Pioneer, but they've since exited the market :(

Otherwise an LED backlit LCD TV would be a good way to go.

skorpien
Oct 7, 2009, 05:55 PM
skorpien,
i was curious if you have considered the LED LCD by Samsung. I am "told" it has the same picture qualities of the Plasma without the burn in issue. My original intention was to buy a plasma, but the local Circuit City and Best Buy's recommended i buy an LCD which i did... Samsung 52" 850 series. I have often regretted it mainly because i have just as much reflection on the screen as i think i would have with the plasma which they all said i should only buy a plasma for a room with no windows. i think i would consider the new LED if i was buying now. my 2 cents...

You make a good point, but cost is a huge reason why I narrowed down my choices to LCD and Plasma. I would love to purchase an LED TV, but it's just not in my budget :(

Panasonic make the really good plasma TVs these days AFAIK. Used to be Pioneer, but they've since exited the market :(

Otherwise an LED backlit LCD TV would be a good way to go.

Again, cost is why I went with Samsung for plasma. The only cost comparable Panasonic plasma I was able to find at local retailers isn't even full 1080p. I live in Canada, so Amazon or Newegg is out of the question since the Canadian sites don't stock a large selection of TVs for some reason.

Unless there's a specific reason not to go with Samsung for plasma, I just might go down that route. I haven't really heard much to make a case for the LG LCD though... Even though it's 240Hz and has 2ms response time...

VirtualRain
Oct 7, 2009, 06:02 PM
I thought Plasma was all but dead... but from this thread, it appears to be alive and kicking!

When I purchased my LCD two years ago, no one was recommending Plasma. What's changed?

SnowLeopard2008
Oct 7, 2009, 06:06 PM
Plasma is dead... LCD is better for gaming, because of the faster refresh rate and more development into LCD vs. Plasma.

skorpien
Oct 7, 2009, 06:16 PM
Plasma is dead... LCD is better for gaming, because of the faster refresh rate and more development into LCD vs. Plasma.

Faster refresh rate? Really? The Samsung I linked to is 600Hz. And response time for a plasma is at 0.001ms (or something along those lines). In comparison, the LG I linked has 240Hz refresh rate and 2ms response time. Unless I'm missing something, the plasma is blowing the LCD out of the water with those specs...

And besides, I don't want to get into the "Plasma is dead" argument (as stated in my first post).

Error Type -43
Oct 7, 2009, 06:17 PM
I thought Plasma was all but dead... but from this thread, it appears to be alive and kicking!

When I purchased my LCD two years ago, no one was recommending Plasma. What's changed?

Nothing's really changed. It's just the myths about plasma technology has been debunked. New "features" found on LCDs to correct slow refresh rates such as 120hz/240hz has never been an issue for plasmas since its inception. Burn-in was a concern early on but, as mentioned earlier, isn't a problem with the current-gen models. You might still see image retention (which is different from burn-in), particularly on LG and Samsung models. But if you go with a Panasonic, specifically their S-series or better, you won't be disappointed (Pioneer sourced their plasma panels from Panny before they exited the market).

basesloaded190
Oct 7, 2009, 07:00 PM
Plasma is dead... LCD is better for gaming, because of the faster refresh rate and more development into LCD vs. Plasma.

that's the most ridiculous thing I've ever heard. Everything you said there is false. Do some research my friend

tbayrgs
Oct 7, 2009, 07:07 PM
Plasma is dead... LCD is better for gaming, because of the faster refresh rate and more development into LCD vs. Plasma.

This is simply not accurate. You can't compare refresh rates listed for LCDs vs. plasmas as the are using different techologies and are measuring different things. The benefit of plasmas is the absence of motion blur--LCDs will suffer from motion blur (though to varying degrees depending on the model).

I'd still say the future for plasma is certainly grim--they are limited in size, are heavier/thicker and use more energy but I for one prefer the picture quality. Spend the same $ on a plasma or LCD and I'd bet the plasma is a better value, though I doubt it'll stay that way much longer.

To the OP, I have a 50" Samsung plasma I picked up about 18 mo. ago and I love it. I watch a lot of sports and action flicks and play some video games so I choose it over a comparable LCD for reduced motion blur. Picture quality is great, colors pop and I've had no burn in issues. In fact, I accidentally fell asleep with the menu for an xbox game on the screen overnight and had no resulting burn in.

Granted, if I was shopping now and had the budget for it, I'd probably be tempted for a new LED backlit LCD. ;)

Cloudane
Oct 7, 2009, 07:12 PM
Difficult subject! I went through this earlier in the year.

From what I understood of it, plasma is lower resolution usually, so if you want to use a computer on it you might be better off with LCD. Whilst plasma is still supposed to be very slightly better quality picture for TV stuff.

Given the weight, the slight danger of plasmas (if it ever ends up flat on its face, it's toast) and the fact that I wanted to use a Mac Mini with it, I went with LCD. No regrets. But there's very little between them I believe.

skorpien
Oct 7, 2009, 07:14 PM
To the OP, I have a 50" Samsung plasma I picked up about 18 mo. ago and I love it. I watch a lot of sports and action flicks and play some video games so I choose it over a comparable LCD for reduced motion blur. Picture quality is great, colors pop and I've had no burn in issues. In fact, I accidentally fell asleep with the menu for an xbox game on the screen overnight and had no resulting burn in.

Granted, if I was shopping now and had the budget for it, I'd probably be tempted for a new LED backlit LCD. ;)

Thank you for your reply. Glad to see somebody actually using and liking a Samsung! My budget won't allow for a Panasonic let alone an LED backlit LCD...

Do you notice any ghosting effect on your TV?

xxBURT0Nxx
Oct 7, 2009, 07:14 PM
Go plasma... you will not be upset. Much better picture quality than an LCD. I wouldn't get the samsung though. When compared side by side with the panasonic models, the samsungs were a lot more dull and had a washed out picture. The panasonic is much more vibrant.

I personally have the tc-p50x1 which is a 50" 720p panel. Picture quality is great, and I got the set for $800. If you want to go the 1080p route, i think it was like $1100 for the 50" Panasonic model.

However, you should know that television and stuff is not broadcast in 1080p, so unless you are using a bluray player. But if you are in a budget crunch, there is nothing wrong with a 720p panel... they still look great.

skorpien
Oct 7, 2009, 07:17 PM
Difficult subject! I went through this earlier in the year.

From what I understood of it, plasma is lower resolution usually, so if you want to use a computer on it you might be better off with LCD. Whilst plasma is still supposed to be very slightly better quality picture for TV stuff.

Given the weight, the slight danger of plasmas (if it ever ends up flat on its face, it's toast) and the fact that I wanted to use a Mac Mini with it, I went with LCD. No regrets. But there's very little between them I believe.

Thanks for the input :) The plasma I'm looking at is full 1080p so resolution should (theoretically) be the same as a 1080p LCD TV, correct? I'm looking to use it strictly for TV, movies (BluRay) and gaming. I'm not looking to hook up a computer to it so that's a non issue. And considering I have no pets or kids (and will make my friends buy me a new one should they knock it over), I think I'm safe for the falling flat on its face thing haha.

basesloaded190
Oct 7, 2009, 07:19 PM
Go plasma... you will not be upset. Much better picture quality than an LCD. I wouldn't get the samsung though. When compared side by side with the panasonic models, the samsungs were a lot more dull and had a washed out picture. The panasonic is much more vibrant.

I personally have the tc-p50x1 which is a 50" 720p panel. Picture quality is great, and I got the set for $800. If you want to go the 1080p route, i think it was like $1100 for the 50" Panasonic model.

However, you should know that television and stuff is not broadcast in 1080p, so unless you are using a bluray player. But if you are in a budget crunch, there is nothing wrong with a 720p panel... they still look great.

amen to that. I hope this doesn't turn into a 720 vs 1080 thread, but i couldn't agree with what you said more! (p.s I am a 720p panasonic plasma owner)

Xapphire13
Oct 7, 2009, 07:46 PM
Go plasma... you will not be upset. Much better picture quality than an LCD. I wouldn't get the samsung though. When compared side by side with the panasonic models, the samsungs were a lot more dull and had a washed out picture. The panasonic is much more vibrant.

I personally have the tc-p50x1 which is a 50" 720p panel. Picture quality is great, and I got the set for $800. If you want to go the 1080p route, i think it was like $1100 for the 50" Panasonic model.

However, you should know that television and stuff is not broadcast in 1080p, so unless you are using a bluray player. But if you are in a budget crunch, there is nothing wrong with a 720p panel... they still look great.

I'm pretty sure some television over here in Australia is broadcast in 1080p... and almost certain its broadcast in 1080i at least.

srexy
Oct 7, 2009, 07:54 PM
Don't know what your budget is but you need one of these basically.

http://www.visualapex.com/plasma/plasma_details.asp?chpartnumber=TH-50PF11UK

I've had my 7 series version (720p) now for 4 years in constant use - great room/HT room/viewable from kitchen/Oprah viewing etc. - and it shows no sign whatsoever of burn-in. Yes you do get slight ghosting against dark backgrounds if the backgrounds remain static but it's not burn-in and is very temporary.

*Note - the commercial Panasonics have no speakers.

tbayrgs
Oct 7, 2009, 08:17 PM
Thank you for your reply. Glad to see somebody actually using and liking a Samsung! My budget won't allow for a Panasonic let alone an LED backlit LCD...

Do you notice any ghosting effect on your TV?

Ever so slightly noticeable ghosting on occasion, much as srexy mentioned in his post. To be honest, I really don't notice it, had to take a look again after I read your post.

For reference, here's a link to the model of plasma I have (http://reviews.cnet.com/flat-panel-tvs/samsung-fp-t5084/4505-6482_7-32460966.html?tag=mncol;lst), no longing available as new model's have replaced it.

An FWIW, Panasonic does make the best plasmas on the market and if you can get one on your budget (though I'd stick to 1080p at the size you're looking at), I'd go for it.

xxBURT0Nxx
Oct 7, 2009, 09:32 PM
I'm pretty sure some television over here in Australia is broadcast in 1080p... and almost certain its broadcast in 1080i at least.

I doubt it's broadcast in 1080p, but since you are in AU i guess it is possible. Only 1080p content you can get broadcast in the US is on demand 1080p movies from DirecTV. Either way, your 720p set will play 1080i content just fine. Too many people play into the marketing of 1080p Full HD...

Xapphire13
Oct 7, 2009, 11:19 PM
I doubt it's broadcast in 1080p, but since you are in AU i guess it is possible. Only 1080p content you can get broadcast in the US is on demand 1080p movies from DirecTV. Either way, your 720p set will play 1080i content just fine. Too many people play into the marketing of 1080p Full HD...

I'll check later on tonight. And I know for definate Foxtel HD is 1080i (Foxtel == Sky or w/e you have in America). I'll post back later to whether i'm right or wrong about television broadcast =].

EDIT: Just checked some digital channels and here are the Australian broadcast resolutions

Nine HD - 1080i
SBS HD - 720p
Seven HD - 1080i
One HD - 1080i
ABC HDTV - 720p

So I guess you were right about it not being progressive, but looks like were moving towards 1080 in australia.

basesloaded190
Oct 8, 2009, 12:24 AM
I'll check later on tonight. And I know for definate Foxtel HD is 1080i (Foxtel == Sky or w/e you have in America). I'll post back later to whether i'm right or wrong about television broadcast =].

EDIT: Just checked some digital channels and here are the Australian broadcast resolutions

Nine HD - 1080i
SBS HD - 720p
Seven HD - 1080i
One HD - 1080i
ABC HDTV - 720p

So I guess you were right about it not being progressive, but looks like were moving towards 1080 in australia.

I gotta think its going to be YEARS until the US is broadcasting anything in 1080p. By the time they do, 4k TV sets will be coming out.

skorpien
Oct 8, 2009, 03:08 AM
Thanks everyone for your input. You've given me a lot to think about. While I won't be going with the commercial grade Panasonic (Canadian price puts it out of my price range), I'll still try to find an affordable Panasonic plasma. I think I'll make a trip out this weekend and see if I can compare the Samsung and Panasonic models. If the difference is negligible to my eyes, I will just end up going with the cheaper one. But if it's too much of a difference, I'll just have to save up a bit longer and get the Panasonic. *sigh* Patience really isn't a virtue I possess when it comes to electronics :( Thanks again!

Cloudane
Oct 8, 2009, 04:56 AM
Thanks for the input :) The plasma I'm looking at is full 1080p so resolution should (theoretically) be the same as a 1080p LCD TV, correct? I'm looking to use it strictly for TV, movies (BluRay) and gaming. I'm not looking to hook up a computer to it so that's a non issue. And considering I have no pets or kids (and will make my friends buy me a new one should they knock it over), I think I'm safe for the falling flat on its face thing haha.

Should be great then, and theoretically capable of 1920x1080 even with a computer input.

If it concerns you at all, watch out for TVs that claim to be 1080p but which are in fact only 720p native but take a 1080p input and downscale it. As people say the difference between 720 and 1080 is arguable if you don't sit right in front of it with 20/20 vision - but I think misleading marketing says a lot about a product and its manufacturer.

We just have a cluttered house, and genuine experience of an LCD falling off a dodgy shelf (and surviving, albeit with a scratch) but for most folk it's not an issue :) The "keep vertical" thing might even be a myth to be honest, I'm unsure.

Ultimately I think the best way is to see them side by side, preferably in a professional A/V retailer (not your equivalent of Currys... I think the nearest thing is called Best Buy in the USA? As they won't have set them up properly).

Big fan of Panasonic here... I'm almost OCD in terms of detail/quality and anything less would've driven me nuts (like the 20" iMac panel does) so the extra cost was worthwhile. YMMV.

aidym
Oct 8, 2009, 07:47 AM
I had the same decision to make a few years ago and was originally looking at Panasonic & Pioneer Plasmas. However, I ended up getting a Sony 40" W series LCD - and I don't regret it one bit. LCD's tend to be a lot brighter than plasmas and therefore work well in brightly lit living rooms, also the reviews of the W series were excellent. The picture quality is excellent and it worked out quit a bit cheaper than plasmas of equal quality.

Edit: Plus I got Sony's TOTR HD/DVD recorder free, 5 years warranty for both the TV and recorder for free and Sky HD for £50 - all from the Sony Centre :) :) :)

xxBURT0Nxx
Oct 8, 2009, 09:25 AM
I gotta think its going to be YEARS until the US is broadcasting anything in 1080p. By the time they do, 4k TV sets will be coming out.

1080i sucks for HD programming.... it can only handle a max of 30fps, so things like sports look terrible when displayed in 1080i because they can't playback at 60fps.

To the OP:

I'd get this (http://www.bestbuy.ca/catalog/proddetail.asp?sku_id=0926HDS0010121052&catid=28399&PCName=tv_panasonic&logon=&langid=EN&test_cookie=1) tv. You will be very happy with the picture quality. Blacks are outstanding, bluray's look amazing, HDTV is as good as broadcast is gonna get for a while. Then if you have left over money in your budget invest in a bluray player or surround sound. I'd also keep in mind using the PS3 as a bluray player. Only $299 and it can do a lot of other cool stuff too.

dhc
Oct 8, 2009, 12:00 PM
Thanks for the replies :)

dhc, so the ghosting/retention thing you see on your TV is temporary? You haven't seen anything that would suggest that there's been permanent damage done? I think I'll be okay with the ghosting if it happens on my set so long as I know it's not going to be permanently damaged.

Yeah, it's temporary and goes pretty quickly, but.. when I'm watching a bluray with letterboxing bars, I'll often see a ghost of the onscreen volume display or menu in the black bars. Maybe I'm just being over critical, but it does get under my skin!

H.isidorius
Oct 8, 2009, 03:02 PM
.... I will just end up going with the cheaper one. But if it's too much of a difference, I'll just have to save up a bit longer and get the Panasonic. *sigh* Patience really isn't a virtue I possess when it comes to electronics :( Thanks again!

I think you should read a bunch of reviews as well on a particular model. I am currently looking around for a new TV as well and I am not hugly impressed with most of the Panasonic models available. The screens are quite reflective and quality (at least in the shop) between Samsung/Panasonic plasma is quite limited. Build/Look and feel differ a lot by the way, but that is what you like or not.

For LED TV's a lot of new models are entering the market now including ones from Sharp and Philips. You should have a look at those as well before deciding.

Interisting link, although you probably knows it http://www.whathifi.com/ and, if you can read German, magnus.de.

xxBURT0Nxx
Oct 8, 2009, 03:24 PM
I think you should read a bunch of reviews as well on a particular model. I am currently looking around for a new TV as well and I am not hugly impressed with most of the Panasonic models available. The screens are quite reflective and quality (at least in the shop) between Samsung/Panasonic plasma is quite limited. Build/Look and feel differ a lot by the way, but that is what you like or not.

For LED TV's a lot of new models are entering the market now including ones from Sharp and Philips. You should have a look at those as well before deciding.

Interisting link, although you probably knows it http://www.whathifi.com/ and, if you can read German, magnus.de.
Panasonic is known for making the nices plasma out there. Used to be pioneer, but they don't make the kuro's anymore so now panasonic is known for having the best plasmas...

jcschlic
Oct 8, 2009, 03:45 PM
I bought one of the first 1080p Sony LCDs that were released a few years ago. (50 inch, the "slight projection" ones - remember those?) and it's sitting in my basement getting a lot of use.

I mounted a 42" Panasonic 1080p plasma in my living room about a year ago.

Both have been great. Which one has a better picture?

The Panasonic

It may be a tough comparison but I used to work at Best Buy in the home theater department in college (for three years) and Panasonic plazmas have always been the best picture combined with value. And best of all they've gotten cheaper over the years...you can get a 50" one for like 1100-1200 bucks right now.

skorpien
Oct 8, 2009, 03:50 PM
Just another question for you all, does anybody know of any good retailers in Canada (Calgary, Alberta specifically) that would have decent home theater departments where one could compare different models? I'm racking my brain trying to think of something, but everything keeps coming back to Future Shop and Best Buy. Thanks again!

I bought one of the first 1080p Sony LCDs that were released a few years ago. (50 inch, the "slight projection" ones - remember those?) and it's sitting in my basement getting a lot of use.

I mounted a 42" Panasonic 1080p plasma in my living room about a year ago.

Both have been great. Which one has a better picture?

The Panasonic

It may be a tough comparison but I used to work at Best Buy in the home theater department in college (for three years) and Panasonic plazmas have always been the best picture combined with value. And best of all they've gotten cheaper over the years...you can get a 50" one for like 1100-1200 bucks right now.

I'm assuming you're in the States? Those prices for Panasonic would be perfectly within my price range, but if that's USD then I'll have to add at least $500 to get the CDN equivalent :(

mchalebk
Oct 9, 2009, 09:46 AM
First off, you would be much better off doing your research on a home theater forum than a computer forum. In my opinion, the best place to do this is AVS forum:

http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/

I did quite a bit of research last year on TVs, considering both LCD and plasma. Here are a few random comments/responses:

1. Regarding LCD manufacturers, LG is not generally held in high regard on the HT sites I've gone to. Far and away the top two brands among HT people are Sony and Samsung. For years, Sony has had the reputation as the best, but a lot of people feel that Samsung has equaled or surpassed Sony. Toshiba sometimes get mentioned as being in the same class, though appears to be harder to find. Sony's are far more expensive, which helps a lot of people choose Samsung.

2. A lot of people claim that burn-in/image retention isn't a problem on plasma sets anymore. However, it is still a huge topic of conversation on the AVS Forum plasma page. If you plan to do a lot of gaming, I would spend some serious time over at AVS Forum researching it and then draw your own conclusions. As someone who watches a lot of 4:3 material, I finally convinced myself that plasma wasn’t for me (they kept recommending stretching the image to fill the screen, which I won't do; and why should I need to stretch it if burn-in isn't a problem? Hmm...).

3. If I were going to get a plasma, I would seriously consider the Samsungs. From my research, I got the impression that Pioneer was the best and Panasonic was second best, and no one else was close. However, Pioneer is out of the business and a lot of people seem to think that the recent Samsung models can now compete with the Panasonics. Do your research.

4. Do you need a thin, hang-on-the-wall kind of TV? If not, it might be worth considering DLP sets (which is what I finally decided on). Yes, it is a dying technology (Mitsubishi is the only manufacturer left in the business), but it offers a great picture for a very reasonable price. They may be deeper than LCD or plasma sets, but they’re actually as light or lighter (for the screen size). If you want a really big set (I don’t think they even make DLP sets under 60” any more), you can’t beat DLP. Check out this unit:

http://www.amazon.com/Mitsubishi-WD-60C9-60-Inch-1080p-Theater/dp/B002HHLGD4/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&s=tv&qid=1255098981&sr=1-1

Once again, you would be much better off spending some serious time over at AVS Forum than getting opinions from people on a computer forum. The people who obsess over this stuff are hanging out over there. The sheer amount of information will be overwhelming at first. However, if you put in the time and learn to sift through the chaff, you’ll be in a much better position to make an informed decision.

xxBURT0Nxx
Oct 9, 2009, 10:07 AM
Just another question for you all, does anybody know of any good retailers in Canada (Calgary, Alberta specifically) that would have decent home theater departments where one could compare different models? I'm racking my brain trying to think of something, but everything keeps coming back to Future Shop and Best Buy. Thanks again!



I'm assuming you're in the States? Those prices for Panasonic would be perfectly within my price range, but if that's USD then I'll have to add at least $500 to get the CDN equivalent :(

If you are talking about a store to go into and physically see the tv's I have no idea because I'm not in Canada. However, if you go to Best Buy Canada's website (which I linked you too above) you will see the Panasonic's in your price range. They also do free delivery or shipping (don't remember now) on orders over $40 or something like that.

EDIT-

In RE: mchalebk

1. Agreed, Samsung and Sony are definitely considered to be the better brands.

2. Burn in is not the problem with plama sets, it's image retention. Burn in means it will not go away. Image retention will go away if you do certain things. If you watch a lot of ESPN, you will notice that you may see a faint ESPN logo even when you are watching a bluray for example. If you did a white wash, or displayed one solid color on screen for a little bit, your image retention would go away. I have a plasma and I play a lot of video games and haven't had any problems with IR. My tv sees a lot of the constant images (football all day sundays, espn and videogames during the week) and I still don't have IR, and if I did I would just do a whitewash to get rid of it.

3. From what I noticed (actually looking at all of the different sets side by side), is that the panasonics looked much better than the samsungs. The panasonic plamas all looked much more realistic, the colors popped more, and overall the image was smoother. The samsungs were a bit more washed out and the colors weren't as vibrant. The samsung's still look great, but when compared side by side to the panasonic, you can really tell the difference. (I also had several friends who looked at the sets at different times with me and all agreed that the panasonics had the better picture quality (at least in the price range I was looking at (42"-50" for ~$1000 give or take a few hundred)

4. DLP is another technology that is great, and you might be able to get some at cheap clearance prices because they are not being made anymore. I know my local best buy has a few samsung dlp's on sale for dirt cheap, and if you can get your hands on an older sony lcos set, they were regarded as probably the best tv on the market 4 years ago. Mitsubishi also makes great DLP sets. Only thing I would keep in mind about DLP is viewing angle. It sucks to be quite honest. I would say anything more than 45 degrees off center and it becomes annoying. For some people's set ups this is not a problem, but for others this may be a deal breaker.

But in general I would have to agree, AVSforum is the place to go for all home theater knowledge. There is so much info over there you probably wouldn't even read through it in a year. People over there will help you with tv and ht recommendations, and there are even some guides and settings on generally accepted calibration settings and such for various tv models.

mchalebk
Oct 9, 2009, 02:38 PM
Burn in is not the problem with plama sets, it's image retention. Burn in means it will not go away. Image retention will go away if you do certain things. If you watch a lot of ESPN, you will notice that you may see a faint ESPN logo even when you are watching a bluray for example. If you did a white wash, or displayed one solid color on screen for a little bit, your image retention would go away. I have a plasma and I play a lot of video games and haven't had any problems with IR. My tv sees a lot of the constant images (football all day sundays, espn and videogames during the week) and I still don't have IR, and if I did I would just do a whitewash to get rid of it.
I was just looking through the master burn-in thread over at AVS Forum. While the majority of talk is about IR, burn-in is still a topic of discussion. For instance, here’s a post made on 9/25:

“Does anyone know if this Break In DVD could possibly fix a uneven wear I am getting on my 10 month old Samsung A450?

“I did break in my TV originally when I first got it not with the DVD but made sure not to turn up the brightness and contrast for first 200 hours and not to leave anything on screen.

“But now I am starting to get thin vertical lines on both sides of my TV and I tried the scroling that samsung has built in for 5 hours yesterday overnight and it did not fix it.

“So my question is will this DVD burn in possibly fix it? Could it make things worst?”

When I inquired about 4:3 viewing habits last year, I got a bunch of comments indicating that 30% was a lot of time to be viewing 4:3 images and that I should just stretch the content.

There is also an awful lot of talk about how careful you need to be with varying your viewing habits and breaking in the sets. I’m not saying that burn-in is or is not a real concern any more, but it is obviously still of concern to a great many owners of plasma sets.


DLP is another technology that is great, and you might be able to get some at cheap clearance prices because they are not being made anymore.
Samsung quit making them, but I’m pretty sure Mitsubishi still does.

Only thing I would keep in mind about DLP is viewing angle. It sucks to be quite honest. I would say anything more than 45 degrees off center and it becomes annoying. For some people's set ups this is not a problem, but for others this may be a deal breaker.
It is true that DLP sets don’t have the off-axis viewing capability that LCD or plasma sets have. However, I suspect most people would find this a non-issue under actual viewing conditions. After all, how satisfying can it be to watch a movie when you’re 60 degrees off axis? However, it's a good point. if you need extreme off axis viewing, a DLP set is probably not for you.

skye12
Oct 9, 2009, 02:47 PM
Get a Samsung B750 series LCD in whatever size. These are the best bang for the buck I've seen for the money. Stupid to pay for the LED backlighting right now.

aross99
Oct 9, 2009, 03:27 PM
First off, you would be much better off doing your research on a home theater forum than a computer forum. In my opinion, the best place to do this is AVS forum:

http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/



This is an excellent point.

You can find more than you ever thought anyone could know about LCD's and Plasmas at AVS.

Be prepared to read though. Many threads are HUNDREDS of pages long, but they are filled with good information.

I have a Pioneer KURO plasma, and have not experienced any burn in at all. I watch a decent amount (25-30%?) of 4:3 content, and as far as I can tell, I don't have any burn in at all.

In my mind the Plasma will provide the best picture, as long as you don't have a huge amount of light in the room. The image on most Plasma's is slightly darker than an LCD (often referred to as running in "Torch mode"). Higher end Plasma's have special ISF modes that can be unlocked to provide similar light levels to LCD's...

Burn in comes from having a static image on the screen for a long time. The brighter the image and the longer it stays there, the worse the burn in can be.

The prevailing wisdom over at AVS is that you should try to watch as much 16:9 content as possible during the first 150 hours or so, and minimize gaming with static displays. After that, the Plasma panel should be aged enough that burn in should not be too much of a problem.

Most models have some type of mode where it can help erase temporary image retention if it does occur. My KURO has a screen wipe that moves across the entire screen for as long as you leave it running.

Take this all with a grain of salt though - I don't game on my KURO, so I don't know what you experience would be for sure.

By the way, the 50" KURO's are still available if you look for them. There are a number of threads dedicated to this over at AVS. Most of the 60" models seem to be just about gone. I just read about someone in Canada getting one the other day...