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Author Topic: Panasonic Plasma TV?  (Read 1142 times)
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Crusis
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« on: September 27, 2012, 01:08:46 PM »

After fighting with Sharp for almost a year we have decided to dump our 60" LCD and get a new TV. During my research I came across some amazing reviews of the Panasonic plasma TV TC-P60ST50. Does anyone have experience with this set or with newer plasma in general?

Our current TV was awesome but last year it started flickering really badly and shutting off. Sometimes it shuts off 5 or 6 times over and over and it's ridiculous. Sharp sent techs, they replaced the power supply, the input board ... nothing worked. When the extended warranty time ran out they refused to let me renew it so in the trash it goes. Pretty sad that a 2 year old $2000 television is such a piece of crap.

Anyway, Panasonic - good? The cnet review blew me away. I thought Plasma was dead tech.
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McNutt
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« Reply #1 on: September 27, 2012, 01:22:56 PM »

Panasonic makes some of, if not the best, plasma sets out there.  I bought a 50" Panasonic plasma last year and have been very happy with it.  Very bright and amazing picture.  It's a thin body too, so it's not five inches thick.  It's not as thin as some of the LEDs, but it looks awesome on my wall.  Go check one out at a store and see if you like it.  It's definitely a viable TV option. 
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« Reply #2 on: September 27, 2012, 01:24:01 PM »

In general, you can't go wrong with a Panasonic set.
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« Reply #3 on: September 27, 2012, 01:25:28 PM »

I have a 58" Panny Plasma and love it. Panasonic does make some of the best plasmas.

Go for it.
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rshetts2
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« Reply #4 on: September 27, 2012, 01:39:31 PM »

Plasma is definitely not a dead tech.  Several companies make excellent plasma tvs.  They have excellent ( some say superior ) pictures when compared to LED/LCD.  The only time Ive known a plasma to under perform is in a very brightly lit room.  Panasonic is considered the top company for plasma and the price point for screen size is better than LED/LCD.  I have both a Panasonic plasma and a Samsung LCD and I actually prefer the plasma as it seems to have better blacks and thus better contrast.   Unless you absolutely need an ultra thin LED/LCD due to positioning constraints ( plasma tv are very thin but LEDs can be thinner ) or a brightly lit room is an issue, you cant go wrong with a plasma.
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« Reply #5 on: September 27, 2012, 02:17:14 PM »

I love Panasonic plasmas. I would generally take a low end panny plasma over 90% of the high end LCD/led tvs. I just compromised on a low end 60" Samsung plasma for my basement since it was 100s of dollars less than the cheapest panny I could find locally, and while I am pleased with it overall, I am already dreaming of replacing it with a bigger panny in a few years...

Panasonic plasmas are awesome.
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« Reply #6 on: September 27, 2012, 05:42:24 PM »

I had to return 2 50" Vizio plasma sets to Costco under the old warranty plans (hdmi issues in one and the other just died). Having to choose under the newer warranty, I went with a Panasonic plasma.  It's still going strong.

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Crawley
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« Reply #7 on: September 27, 2012, 06:09:16 PM »

I've had my Panasonic plasma set for several years now (4 years?). No regrets on that purchase at all - other than I purchased right as prices were starting to fall on HD sets. Works and looks great.
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« Reply #8 on: September 27, 2012, 06:58:15 PM »

I have a Panasonic VT20 that I purchased last year. Almost perfect black levels, subtle color reproduction, and 3D. It's great! smile

A couple of things to keep in mind: A new plasma screen is brighter than it will be when it has been worn in, and you may notice a sort of rainbow-like artifact on white colors during this time (not everyone is able to see it, but it bothered me quite a bit). This effect seems to fade with use however. I haven't seen it on my screen for at least 6 months. A plasma screen also consumes significantly more electricity than a similar LCD or LED screen. It's also sensitive to light, which means you shouldn't go for plasma if you are unable to darken the room when you're going to use it.
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« Reply #9 on: September 27, 2012, 07:44:00 PM »

Yeah, there was a rainbow effect on mine too during really white scenes.  Like TiLT, I haven't seen it in awhile.  I guess it was only during the early days.

I always thought plasmas were bad for bright rooms, but my den is nothing but windows and I never had a problem with the brightness. 
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Crusis
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« Reply #10 on: September 27, 2012, 08:34:22 PM »

Okay. I'm sold. Thanks for everyone's input. I'll check Costco but I found the set I want for $1600 (!!!) on Amazon and that seems like a freaking steal. I'm looking at the 60" version.
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JCC
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« Reply #11 on: September 28, 2012, 03:27:06 AM »

Quote from: Crusis on September 27, 2012, 08:34:22 PM

Okay. I'm sold. Thanks for everyone's input. I'll check Costco but I found the set I want for $1600 (!!!) on Amazon and that seems like a freaking steal. I'm looking at the 60" version.

Sadly, at my Costco I can never find any panny plasmas bigger than 50" these days. I hope you'll have better luck. My best buy had a 60" Panasonic for $1399 recently. The 60" Sammy I bought was only $950 on Labor Day weekend. That was too low for me to resist. I would expect the panny to look better, but I am satisfied with this set. (Its main flaw is a bit of motion blur with sharp camera movements...)

Let us know what you end up getting!
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rshetts2
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« Reply #12 on: September 28, 2012, 01:11:05 PM »

Quote from: Crusis on September 27, 2012, 08:34:22 PM

Okay. I'm sold. Thanks for everyone's input. I'll check Costco but I found the set I want for $1600 (!!!) on Amazon and that seems like a freaking steal. I'm looking at the 60" version.

I got my Panny plasma from Amazon last year and the price included delivery, set up and removal of all the package trash.  Throw in the fact it wasnt taxed and it was pretty hard to beat.  enjoy your new tv.

One caveat, its not as much of an issue with the newer sets but plasmas do have a "break in" period.  Following the guidelines will help you avoid any potential screen burn in issues.
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Crusis
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« Reply #13 on: September 28, 2012, 03:58:14 PM »

I can't find a single store around here that carries the TV. ARGH! I'm not going to spend the money if I can't at least see the picture. I may be getting an LED after all. I read that Panasonic's really hurting financially.
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Bullwinkle
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« Reply #14 on: September 28, 2012, 04:38:43 PM »

Quote from: Crusis on September 28, 2012, 03:58:14 PM

I can't find a single store around here that carries the TV. ARGH! I'm not going to spend the money if I can't at least see the picture. I may be getting an LED after all. I read that Panasonic's really hurting financially.

Good luck with that.

I've found that whenever I've needed a new TV, I do the research and find the right one and can never see it in a store anywhere.

You should look into Amazon's return policy, though.  They're usually pretty great about stuff like that.  You may be able to get the set, live with it for a few days and then swap it for a different one if it's not what you wanted.
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« Reply #15 on: September 28, 2012, 09:30:34 PM »

I bought a 55" Panasonic VT30 plasma last year (their top-end set) and it's an incredible TV...incredibly sharp picture, great color, and really impressive 3D. It was widely regarded as one of the top consumer-level HDTVs on the market last year, and pretty much anyone that has seen it has commented on how much better it looks than most other TVs they've watched.

Quote from: Crusis on September 28, 2012, 03:58:14 PM

I can't find a single store around here that carries the TV. ARGH! I'm not going to spend the money if I can't at least see the picture. I may be getting an LED after all. I read that Panasonic's really hurting financially.

I wouldn't let inability to see the TV for yourself keep you from buying that Panasonic if it's well reviewed. Any viewing you do in an average store isn't going to be a realistic representation of what the picture will look like in your home anyway. The quality of content is usually poor because it's split across so many screens, and the sets are so improperly calibrated, that you really don't get a good idea of how it will look set up in your own room with high-quality content.
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Crusis
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« Reply #16 on: September 29, 2012, 01:46:31 PM »

Best Buy had this set for $1398 on their site so they matched it in store. It was priced at $1899 in store - even the manager that had to okay it was like "holy shit." ...They did have an smaller Panasonic Plasma but I just couldn't get over how dark the screen was even after messing with some of the settings. I have 45 days since I'm a BB silver/platinum-whatever-they-call-it member so I can exchange it if I change my mind. I don't think we'll watch a lot of 3D but my wife really loved the passive tech this set provides over the Panny. This TV was such a steal it was hard to pass up.

One thing I don't like is that we had a 60" before even though it was a larger backlit LCD. The size difference is noticeable. Actually I have the LG temporarily setup because I have to take the old set down and mount the new one on the wall. I'll post a pic later.
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rshetts2
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« Reply #17 on: September 29, 2012, 02:39:25 PM »

Grats on your new TV.  If you stepped down in size, yeah youre gonna notice, especially if it is in the same place as your 60" was.
  As far as the screen "darkness"  I am willing to bet that it was due to the situation in the store and not an actual issue with the TV itself.  Ive heard of people having issues with a Panny Plasma but that is one complaint Ive never heard, especially once the set is properly calibrated.  Im betting it had to do with the in store lighting and there probably wasnt a lot you could do beside kill the lights in the store, to get a true representation of the tv's picture.
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« Reply #18 on: September 29, 2012, 04:45:01 PM »

There's also the chance you've gotten used to watching improperly calibrated pictures, making bright, sharp colors look best in your eyes. When I bought my Panasonic VT20, I quickly learned to trust the judgment of expert advice for how to calibrate it properly, and the picture was considerably darker than I expected. The thing is, it's dark in a way that enhances the detail in the picture and produces more natural colors. I properly calibrated TV will seem darker than you'd expect it to be, and will be able to show very subtle colors. A typical thing I noticed people look for was the red in actor's chins. If you can't see it, chances are the screen is of poor quality or isn't calibrated right.

The thing you absolutely must not do under any circumstance is to set your TV to dynamic mode, or whatever it's called on your set. This will saturate the picture with color and brightness, but will kill detail and color balance and get you used to this kind of thing. To most people this will look better right away, but it doesn't last. Better to get used to correct calibration right away.

Plasmas are particularly good at this kind of thing. The VT20 I bought got great reviews comparing it to so-called "reference screens" in quality. These are screens that show perfect colors as intended by the creator of the movie, and the VT20 was so close that the differences were barely noticeable, if at all. I'm not sure if a LED screen can do the same thing. Depends on the screen I guess, though plasma is better suited to this kind of thing.
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« Reply #19 on: September 30, 2012, 03:40:11 PM »

Quote from: TiLT on September 29, 2012, 04:45:01 PM

There's also the chance you've gotten used to watching improperly calibrated pictures, making bright, sharp colors look best in your eyes. When I bought my Panasonic VT20, I quickly learned to trust the judgment of expert advice for how to calibrate it properly, and the picture was considerably darker than I expected. The thing is, it's dark in a way that enhances the detail in the picture and produces more natural colors. I properly calibrated TV will seem darker than you'd expect it to be, and will be able to show very subtle colors. A typical thing I noticed people look for was the red in actor's chins. If you can't see it, chances are the screen is of poor quality or isn't calibrated right.

Agree completely. People keep flocking to LEDs because (in addition to form factor differences) they are in love with the jacked up contrast/brightness settings the stores use because their interiors are overly lit. People think plasmas look too "dark". No, they are designed to show things properly.

Quote
The thing you absolutely must not do under any circumstance is to set your TV to dynamic mode, or whatever it's called on your set. This will saturate the picture with color and brightness, but will kill detail and color balance and get you used to this kind of thing. To most people this will look better right away, but it doesn't last. Better to get used to correct calibration right away.

Again, total agreement from me. Dynamic/Vivid modes are horrible, and often not good for the life of the television either.

Quote
Plasmas are particularly good at this kind of thing. The VT20 I bought got great reviews comparing it to so-called "reference screens" in quality. These are screens that show perfect colors as intended by the creator of the movie, and the VT20 was so close that the differences were barely noticeable, if at all. I'm not sure if a LED screen can do the same thing. Depends on the screen I guess, though plasma is better suited to this kind of thing.

100% agreement.
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Crusis
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« Reply #20 on: October 01, 2012, 02:50:51 PM »

So far I am very pleased with the new TV and equally happy that it works. Our old LCD was really annoying with it's constant flickering and shutting off at random times.

My family room has a large sliding glass door to the side and sunlight streams through it so any chance of a Plasma was pretty much out the window when I viewed one of the Panasonics at the store.

The 3D on this LG is pretty freaking amazing. I have to admit that I was not all that interested in 3D but this set has changed my mind. Since it uses passive 3D it is very similar to the Real3d movie theaters. We picked up Hugo to give it a whirl and the movie was quite breathtaking. I still can't believe I got this set for under $1400.
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