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Old Mar 20, 2013, 02:22 PM   #26
MN7119
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Have 2 Samsung SmartTVs LED (60"and 55") and could not be happier. Samsung left Sony in the stone age when talking about TVs. Panasonic is well known for great plasma TVs. LG? No thanks!!!!
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Old Mar 20, 2013, 02:50 PM   #27
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Originally Posted by BigMacAttack1 View Post
Well, Sears ended up being out of stock on the ST50. However, I was able to get a comparable model for the price: The new-for-2013 50ST60 for $800 delivered on April 2. It does say that there were minor improvements to the screen but it does also include a couple of pairs of 3D glasses. So, even though I'm not happy about waiting 2 more weeks, I'm happy with the resolution provided. Looking forward to getting my new TV!

http://shop.panasonic.com/shop/model/TC-P50ST60

Found a few more improvements on the ST60, including slight increase in audio watts (18 on the ST50 and 20 on the ST60) and, more importantly, a dual-core processor.
The Panasonic ST 50 is a very nice plasma TV. You will be glad you go this TV as it does very well across the board on all tests.

Media playback - did you get the ATV 3? If not, you may want to consider the following to play with:

Western Digital's upper end offering
Roku
Dune Media players (pricier but absolutely excellent image)
various blu ray players that offer media playback

AVR - some "receivers" will do airplay which allows you to use your iphone/iPad/iPod and computer with iTunes to directly access and play music. I do this all the time.

Best to you with your Panasonic and hope you get a few years of enjoyment. You will love going from 50 to 60 inches. It is a great bonus!
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Old Mar 20, 2013, 03:16 PM   #28
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Originally Posted by phrehdd View Post
The Panasonic ST 50 is a very nice plasma TV. You will be glad you go this TV as it does very well across the board on all tests.

Media playback - did you get the ATV 3? If not, you may want to consider the following to play with:

Western Digital's upper end offering
Roku
Dune Media players (pricier but absolutely excellent image)
various blu ray players that offer media playback

AVR - some "receivers" will do airplay which allows you to use your iphone/iPad/iPod and computer with iTunes to directly access and play music. I do this all the time.

Best to you with your Panasonic and hope you get a few years of enjoyment. You will love going from 50 to 60 inches. It is a great bonus!
Thanks Phred! I actually stayed w/the 50" but got the 2013 model instead of the 2012 (ST60 instead of the ST50). 60" just seems too big for my needs. Do you know: with smart TVs and smart Blu Ray players, would that make Apple TV obsolete in regards to being able to stream from my Macbook Pro to the TV (movies, iTunes, pictures, etc.)? I did get the Apple TV, but am now in the market for a Blu Ray 3D player--if I can find one that would let me stream video/music wirelessly from my Macbook Pro, making me not need the Apple TV, that would be great!

Edit: Seems DNLA and Apple don't play nice together, so I'll still need the Apple TV to steam wirelessly to my TV!
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Last edited by BigMacAttack1; Mar 20, 2013 at 03:36 PM.
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Old Mar 20, 2013, 03:54 PM   #29
js81
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BigMacAttack1 View Post
Also leaning towards LED for lighter weight and better energy consumption (and better picture?).
Lighter weight - probably.
Better energy consumption - definitely.
Better picture - subjective, but I tend to say not even close.

Remember, though, that LED simply refers to the back light, not the screen itself. It's still an LCD screen, but with an LED back light instead of a CCFL.

That being said, I won't buy anything for my personal use except a plasma - the black levels, viewing angles, and lack of motion blur trump all else to me. LCDs have improved on all three of these of late, but I feel they still pale in comparison to an even modestly priced plasma. That being said, I will say that if I were buying an LCD, it would be a Vizio - great value and quality for the money, IMHO.

EDIT: Read the whole thread before posting, doofus... congrats on your new TV.
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Old Mar 20, 2013, 04:45 PM   #30
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BigMacAttack1 View Post

Edit: Seems DNLA and Apple don't play nice together, so I'll still need the Apple TV to steam wirelessly to my TV!
I have Twonky Server running on my iMac -- it's DLNA server software. No problems streaming wirelessly to my LG BluRay player or Sony BluRay player. I like being able to play .mkv files and ATV just won't do that.

I also have an Iomega StorCenter 4TB RAID drive that has a built in DLNA server. That also works like a charm
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Old Mar 20, 2013, 07:44 PM   #31
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Don't know if it will effect your decision at all, but a report in a UK hifi and video magazine today states Panasonic is set to pull out of the plasma TV business.

http://www.whathifi.com/news/panason...-of-plasma-tvs
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Old Mar 20, 2013, 07:48 PM   #32
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Originally Posted by Attonine View Post
Don't know if it will effect your decision at all, but a report in a UK hifi and video magazine today states Panasonic is set to pull out of the plasma TV business.

http://www.whathifi.com/news/panason...-of-plasma-tvs
That just means that I'll have a collector's item! Really, though, that's unfortunate b/c they're regarded as the best company to produce plasma TVs in the business. That being said, I'm very comfortable with my purchase and I'm sure if I have any warranty issues, they will do a good job of honoring them.
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Old Mar 20, 2013, 08:03 PM   #33
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Quote:
Originally Posted by oldgeezer View Post
I have Twonky Server running on my iMac -- it's DLNA server software. No problems streaming wirelessly to my LG BluRay player or Sony BluRay player. I like being able to play .mkv files and ATV just won't do that.

I also have an Iomega StorCenter 4TB RAID drive that has a built in DLNA server. That also works like a charm
Thanks for the tip on Twonky--I learn something new every day. Since I already have Apple TV and it plays so nice w/my Macbook, I think I'll keep it for now, but I'll file Twonky away. Do you ever have compatibility issues with your Mac? Is there a way you can stream from your iMac onto a TV and yet still surf the web?

As an aside, I do believe/hope the DLNA on my Panasonic TV will play w/my Synology DS212J NAS and can pull media off of that to stream to my TV, freeing up the laptop to surf.
Can anyone verify this?
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Old Mar 20, 2013, 10:10 PM   #34
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BigMacAttack1 View Post
Thanks Phred! I actually stayed w/the 50" but got the 2013 model instead of the 2012 (ST60 instead of the ST50). 60" just seems too big for my needs. Do you know: with smart TVs and smart Blu Ray players, would that make Apple TV obsolete in regards to being able to stream from my Macbook Pro to the TV (movies, iTunes, pictures, etc.)? I did get the Apple TV, but am now in the market for a Blu Ray 3D player--if I can find one that would let me stream video/music wirelessly from my Macbook Pro, making me not need the Apple TV, that would be great!

Edit: Seems DNLA and Apple don't play nice together, so I'll still need the Apple TV to steam wirelessly to my TV!
When you say iTunes do you mean just music or do you mean also movies purchased from iTunes?

Putting Twonky on your computer will do the trick if that is the way you want to go. Another option would be to get a small NAS (network attached storage) unit that has some features like DNLA etc.

My AVR (receiver) does airplay which allows my computer, my iPad, iPhone to all send music to the AVR. My blu ray unit plays most typical movie file formats and that happens to be an Oppo. I do believe there are cheaper blu ray players that will also play media files including music. It may be possible for your TV via the Viera Link or connect or whatever it is called to see your Mac on the network if it has DNLA services and thus play directly most movie formats and music. The exceptions would most likely be on hi def movies using HD Audio DTS-Master etc and lossless Apple music files. Typical 256 AAC will play as will Flac and other music files.


My system
Panasonic VT50
QNAP NAS (2)
Oppo Bdp 103 blu ray player
Dune 3 Base Media player (mostly retired)
TiVo 3
Mac Mini quad 2.0 i7

From the NAS, the TV can play music and movies (other than mentioned above). The Oppo plays all but Apple lossless. Dune plays pretty much everything. Mac Mini will of course play everything but HD audio on movies.
Oh - should say they all do photos.

For blu ray - look at typical makers such as Panasonic, Samsung, LG to name a few. They are cheaper. The Panasonic has the ability to possibly share remotes and services.

Dune Media player has a primitive front end but plays pretty much everything and comes in various version including one that houses both a hard drive and blu ray player. My model is old and though it has a drive inside, I stream from my NAS. I have locally turned on several friends to Dune line of players and each seems to think (other than the menus) that it is the best item they have purchased for movie file playback. They all agree that the music playback is clunky and that iTunes is far nicer.

NAS - check out Synology and QNAP and as some would suggest ReadyNas.

I'll just say that this is an expensive hobby on two fronts - in general it is expensive and gets more expensive when we try to go too cheap and end up replacing stuff because we didn't thoroughly shop for the right stuff for a few dollars more.

Hope this helps out. If you have specific questions feel free to pm me.
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Old Mar 20, 2013, 11:18 PM   #35
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Great choice! I think the only thing better than the Panny ST50 lines are the higher Panny lines. You won't be disappointed. I wouldn't worry about Panasonic getting out of the plasma biz. The company will still exist. They will honor their warranties.

Be sure and come back and post your impressions.
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Old Mar 21, 2013, 07:32 AM   #36
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Originally Posted by BigMacAttack1 View Post
Yeah, I forgot about the lack of love for Samsung here on this site. I have had problems with the TV ...
Is there that great of a difference between 720p and 1080p?
I've got a Sammy LCD (installed in a bright room) and have had zero problems but my Father-in-Law had a similar model that died within a few years of purchase. 1080 vs. 720 depends on the source you view most of the time. If your signal is consistently true HD, then it matters. If you mainly watch regular cable or DVDs then you could probably save $ and go with the 720p.
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Old Mar 21, 2013, 08:32 AM   #37
allaboutmac
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When to buy

Just an FYI.

I read that March/ April is the time to buy TV's. The manufacturers introduce their new models in April so you should start to see decent discounts on the current models in stock at most stores. I would think this would help you negotiate and even lower price on any model you are interested in.

Sorry, I can't remember where I read it.

I too am looking for a new TV. My Samsung is 5-6 years old. When I fire it up the LCD 46" screen lights up like a starry night with pink pixels. I have to turn it off and fire it up again and it clears up. I just waiting for it to completely die. I received tons of compliments on this TV's picture quality. It's a LN-T4665F. It has a boatload of inputs. 3 HDMI ports VGA DVI (2) Svideo, Standard audio inputs, etc. I guess Samsung was trying to cover every eventuality with this TV.

I lean towards Samsung too. Good luck with your search.
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Old Mar 21, 2013, 10:57 AM   #38
BigMacAttack1
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Quote:
Originally Posted by phrehdd View Post
When you say iTunes do you mean just music or do you mean also movies purchased from iTunes?

Putting Twonky on your computer will do the trick if that is the way you want to go. Another option would be to get a small NAS (network attached storage) unit that has some features like DNLA etc.

My AVR (receiver) does airplay which allows my computer, my iPad, iPhone to all send music to the AVR. My blu ray unit plays most typical movie file formats and that happens to be an Oppo. I do believe there are cheaper blu ray players that will also play media files including music. It may be possible for your TV via the Viera Link or connect or whatever it is called to see your Mac on the network if it has DNLA services and thus play directly most movie formats and music. The exceptions would most likely be on hi def movies using HD Audio DTS-Master etc and lossless Apple music files. Typical 256 AAC will play as will Flac and other music files.


My system
Panasonic VT50
QNAP NAS (2)
Oppo Bdp 103 blu ray player
Dune 3 Base Media player (mostly retired)
TiVo 3
Mac Mini quad 2.0 i7

From the NAS, the TV can play music and movies (other than mentioned above). The Oppo plays all but Apple lossless. Dune plays pretty much everything. Mac Mini will of course play everything but HD audio on movies.
Oh - should say they all do photos.

For blu ray - look at typical makers such as Panasonic, Samsung, LG to name a few. They are cheaper. The Panasonic has the ability to possibly share remotes and services.

Dune Media player has a primitive front end but plays pretty much everything and comes in various version including one that houses both a hard drive and blu ray player. My model is old and though it has a drive inside, I stream from my NAS. I have locally turned on several friends to Dune line of players and each seems to think (other than the menus) that it is the best item they have purchased for movie file playback. They all agree that the music playback is clunky and that iTunes is far nicer.

NAS - check out Synology and QNAP and as some would suggest ReadyNas.

I'll just say that this is an expensive hobby on two fronts - in general it is expensive and gets more expensive when we try to go too cheap and end up replacing stuff because we didn't thoroughly shop for the right stuff for a few dollars more.

Hope this helps out. If you have specific questions feel free to pm me.
Thanks again! I think I'm just going to keep the ATV3 since it plays so nice w/my Macbook and I like the layout of iTunes/my library of music on the TV via ATV. I have a Synology NAS and I'm going to try and stream my movies from it right to my TV via DNLA. Stay tuned as I get my new TV April 2.
And I hear ya on the "buying cheaper and needing to get the right equipment later"--done that a few times!..but I'm learning!
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Old Mar 21, 2013, 04:48 PM   #39
oldgeezer
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BigMacAttack1 View Post
Thanks for the tip on Twonky--I learn something new every day. Since I already have Apple TV and it plays so nice w/my Macbook, I think I'll keep it for now, but I'll file Twonky away. Do you ever have compatibility issues with your Mac? Is there a way you can stream from your iMac onto a TV and yet still surf the web?

As an aside, I do believe/hope the DLNA on my Panasonic TV will play w/my Synology DS212J NAS and can pull media off of that to stream to my TV, freeing up the laptop to surf.
Can anyone verify this?
Twonky is one of my start-up applications and is available any time my iMac is powered up -- which is 24/7. It absolutely does not affect my ability to surf the web or run any other applications. I ran it on my prior 2008 iMac which had only 3gb RAM with no problems whatsoever so it doesn't appear to require much in the way of system resources.

I've even watched different movies on two TVs simultaneously without any problems.
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Old Mar 22, 2013, 04:34 PM   #40
BigMacAttack1
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Well, sears.com has the 50ST60 on sale for $1000 ($150 less than MSRP) with free delivery. Delivery is about 1.5 weeks out, as the TV is just now being released for the Spring '13 season. Good deal on a great TV--I'll post my impressions after I receive mine April 2!

http://www.sears.com/panasonic-50inc...1&blockType=G1
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Old Mar 22, 2013, 05:39 PM   #41
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Just a casual FYI

Read that Panasonic will be joining Sony in a venture to get OLED TVs out and may indeed be pulling out of the plasma TV market.

On an up note - Samsung has come out with a new plasma that supposedly has very good blacks and is as "bright as an lcd" TV.

It really doesn't matter when one buys a TV, next year's model will always have more in store (save for that elusive perfect video).

Three years ago, I bought a 37" 720 LCD TV for a family member that is still running strong and serves up regular TV that meets the needs. My needs are different and thus the late Kuro 50" and now VT50 Panasonic.

My take is perhaps that Sony is hurting and Panasonic can't match Samsung on (cost of production) pricing so its Sony/Pan vs Samsung in this game.
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