Panasonic’s latest 3D Plasma, the snappily named TH-103VX200, features full HD 1080P picture with 3D capability, but at a whopping 103” screen. That’s as big as some peoples Projection screens.
This beast of a screen weighs in at a rather hefty 200 Kgs, so don’t expect to be mounting it on your stud wall without making sure it won’t pull the whole lot down the following day.
Usually at this size, the picture quality reduces dramatically, but Panasonic seems to have created a screen that manages to cope well, and offer a picture that could well be the better of some much smaller units.
HD Component to be chopped. - Click to see the article in the Hi-Def section.
Pioneer is said to be reviewing its options regarding its flat panel business says the Wall Street Journal article.
Many companies are looking at their production profits at this time, and Pioneer is considering whether it should cease all productions of flat panel displays, both LCD and Plasma.
This follows last years decision to cease production of its own panels and instead source them from Sharp and Panasonic.
This it would seem still hasn’t put their panel production on a financially profitable footing, hence the recent decision to possibly withdraw altogether from the panel market.
An announcement is expected as soon as next month.
In a review where yet again the price was quoted incorrectly, the Planar was awarded a full five stars with comments such as - "Even more remarkable is how great standard-definition sources look..." and "..the sensational purity of its pictures, HD images look utterly pristine, with no grain, no noise and no processing glitches" and finally what is becoming the familiar wording for this panel "possibly the single most subtle and satisfying TV picture performance that money can buy".
Check out the full review here.
There appears to be no manufacturer left to speak out in support of Plasma.
In what has been a very rocky month or two for Plasma it would seem that our favourite panel format (not including the new Planar) could be set to die out.
Pioneer recently announced that it will soon be stopping making Plasmas in favour of LCD. This came as a major shock as Pioneer have always been the major proponents of Plasma displays. This has no doubt been fuelled by the announcement that Plasma inventors and the major suppliers of the best quality display panels to other manufacturers "Fujitsu" has decided that it "no longer sees a viable future financially in the manufacture of Plasma display panels". This also means that Hitachi (part owners of Fujitsu) are now unsure as to their role (probably none it would seem) in the future of Plasma, especially as they're set to bring out a new range of 42, 50 and possibly even 55" LCD's. It's possible that they are only denying that have yet to make a decision to avoid being stuck with stocks of Plasmas.
Recent reports worldwide about the substantial costs in making Plasmas compared with the decreasing costs and better profits of making LCD panels appear to be leading the market in only one direction. Further concerns that with the disappearance of the inventor of the breed and major supplier of the Panel Glass itself there will be a shortage of spares in years to come, will no doubt only exacerbate the situation.
LCD has always had a few advantages, no screen burn, which for people using them for gaming is probably the biggest boon, lower power consumption, no reflections off the screen for those in lightened rooms (Plasma displays must have glass fronts, which is prone to reflections) and perhaps longer life were the others. Certainly LCD panels are improving, and it would seem that they now have the capability to make one as good, and indeed better than a Plasma, but it's expensive to do, and expensive is not a place where major big sales manufacturing wants to be. As a rule we still believe that in most instances Plasmas are better to look at than their LCD cousins in the larger sizes. We only know of one exception to this rule, but it would seem that the end quality won't dictate what the manufacturers make. In these times of what is apparently a global recession, the only thing they are likely to follow is their pockets, and this is definitely telling them that LCD is the way to go.
Planar will not be known to many of you, but in reality they are one of the Worlds largest display manufacturers. Things like cash machine display, petrol pump displays, hospital displays, many of these are made by Planar.
As such there is no reason that you should pay any attention to this. It's not until we mention names like Runco and Vidikron that all of a sudden their name will mean more. Because Planar is the owner of these brands.
Those of you who read the mags will also realise that Planar make some VERY nice home cinema projectors. Very nice indeed.
However they also make a range of high end LCD monitors.
Now regular readers of our pages will know that large LCD's are as popular with us as, well....... let's not go there. But, it seems like we may have to re-think our position on this.
The PD470 is their flagship 47" LCD monitor. On the face of it you may think that there are already plenty of these out there, but not like this.
Planar has poured all of its substantial knowledge into this high flyer of an LCD. Motion blur is all but non-exsistent, Black levels are on par with the best Plasma, viewing angle is even decent. Further more it is fully HD with 1080 x 1920 resolution and 24P capable. It also has a very attractive picture frame surround in Piano Black, which aids the viewing experience. As it is purely a monitor panel, it has no speakers and therefore is very small relative to its picture size, so no need to take over the living room.
Why is it this good? The reasons are many fold, but in a nutshell, they have used the finest available panel coupled to a very high grade on board video processor. Higher than any other manufacturer has fitted to a panel up to now, and even higher than many stand alone scaling boxes.
The results are clearly evident, this panel has greater depth of field in its picture than any other panel, be it LCD or Plasma than we've ever seen. It really is a kind of 3D realism.
With this much on offer it certainly isn't a cheap option. But for the discerning viewer who wants the very best it is the only stop.
We urge you to check out the spec on Planars web page.
But more than that, come in and see it working, as seeing is really believing.
50, in this case is not a reflection of Pioneers age, but more of their new 50" full 1080p Plasma panel.
Pioneers 42" screen has gained many fans for it's gorgeous looks and now that same look is available for this 50" monster.
If you are an avid magazine reader, then you'll already know that it has picked up a hat full of awards.
Stunning contrast levels and vivid images set this screen apart from all but a handful of other top end screens. On HD playback it really has one of the best pictures available.
Standard quality playback is low on motion blur and artifacting, making it a joy to watch on all occasions.
Hitachi has long been our favourite Plasma manufacturer for picture quality.
(Actually our favourite is Fujitsu - who invented the Plasma. However, their cost rules them out for most people, but as we've mentioned before, Fujitsu is owned by Hitachi. So, the technology developed by World leading Fujitsu filters across to Hitachi usually three months later).
The new Hitachi 42" and 50" inch screens both feature 1080 lines and 1080p handling for startling images, even from standard material. On Hi-Def they look drop dead gorgeous.
Add to this HDMi and Component inputs, A host of Scarts, Memory card reader, Computer input, Freeview and Analogue tuners, as well as a motorised swivel base and the package becomes complete.
They also feature a new look and can come with a rather special Piano Black surround.
Priced very competitively it looks like our opinion of Hitachi will continue for some time to come.
The real truth - how brave are you?
Feeling brave and really want to know the truth about LCD Vs Plasma. Then follow THIS link to read an independent report listing the findings. If your a big LCD fan we might advise you not to go any further because you won't like what you read!