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New TV
Old 11-10-2014, 11:29 PM   #1
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New TV

Our 6 yo 42" LG LED TV has developed vertical lines, buzzing, and now blinking. So, we're demoting it to our video game TV and just purchased a Samsung 50" Plasma TV for $549 from best buy.

We've never owned a Plasma TV but the online reviews just raved about the picture quality vs price for Plasma and this particular model specifically, esp. compared to LED's.

I'm curious who here owns a Plasma, how happy you are with it, and how 'serious' you are about TV quality (IE, do you consider yourself a videophile or a casual viewer?)
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Old 11-11-2014, 06:16 AM   #2
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You jumped on the bandwagon just prior to the music stopping.

Plasma TV's are great - I bought one last January. But they are a dying technology:

LG last manufacturer to stop production of plasma TVs

Quote:
The announcement of LG ends the era of plasma TVs. There are no major plasma TV manufacturers left.
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Old 11-11-2014, 06:41 AM   #3
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We have plasma, like it a lot. It's getting old, though, and sooner rather than later will have to be replaced by something non-plasma for reasons that REWahoo pointed out.

How serious are we as viewers? Well, I'll spend lots of time researching options and reading opinions, but will try to keep the spending "reasonable". Like with our audio equipment, I find as as we age it is more difficult to actually see and hear the things that used to matter and distinguish one product from another.
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Old 11-11-2014, 06:48 AM   #4
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Like with our audio equipment, I find as as we age it is more difficult to actually see and hear the things that used to matter and distinguish one product from another.
+1

One of the nice features of buying a large screen TV is not only the size of the picture but closed-captioning is large enough to easily read.
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Old 11-11-2014, 11:04 AM   #5
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No more plasma for us.

I am a serious videophile (and audiophile) and recently bought a Samung 65 inch 4k curved TV. It is simply awesome and made us watch & enjoy movies again, old & new ones. There are not too many 4k contents except on YouTube. But I find some of the YouTube 4k videos enjoyable - mostly scenic time lapse videos, shorts, demos, ...

Some 3D movies are simply eye popping. I thought Avatar was good until I watched Star Trek Into the Darkness in 3D. Damn realistic. The TV does a decent job of simulating 3D from 2D material but the 2D 1080p picture quality is so good that I don't use the simulation much. The 2D 1080p played as is will have 3D effect without the simulation.

Samsung's smart tv app line up is also good. I can't get enough of Vimeo - all HD content.

DW and I are very happy that we made the leap despite people questioning the need for 4K TV without much content out there.
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Old 11-11-2014, 11:11 AM   #6
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No more plasma for us.

I am a serious videophile (and audiophile) and recently bought a Samung 65 inch 4k curved TV.
I appreciate the fact there are folks like you willing to spend for this new technology. The more who buy the latest and greatest, the sooner prices come down to a reasonable level. I would not have believed a few years ago that I would be able to purchase a 60 inch name-brand plasma TV for under $550, but it came to pass.
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Old 11-11-2014, 11:17 AM   #7
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I have two plasma TV's. The original one is the old school 50" we've had for almost 10 years...works great and the picture is pretty good (only 720). I came across a newer one on craigslist for $150 someone was looking to unload. It's in our bedroom and looks great too. I hate that plasma is going away...I do prefer them to LED.

Sent from my mobile device so please excuse grammatical errors.
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Old 11-11-2014, 11:42 AM   #8
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Went through this two years ago - differences between plasma and LED (which remember, is simply an LCD based system with LED light instead of fluorescent light), even then, was beginning to narrow - yeah, true videophiles were willing to live with the issues of plasma in exchange for "the best" video. There were continuing issues with plasma including heat and earlier failure modes. But, blacks were better (this difference narrowed significantly with distributed lighting with LEDs vice edge lighting).

So, I bought a higher end "smart" 60" LED (Sharp) for around $1500 ... 3D, etc ... still edge lit with all sorts of cool functions - it is at a second home.

Nine months later, we bought two Vizio "smart" 60" LED (edge lighting) for $688 each at a local Walmart. Non-3D and with less cool electronics. Put one at the second home and one replacing the 40" CRT at the main home.

So, we got six folks together and viewed half of a Blu-ray high impact action movie on the high end Sharp and then did the second half on the way cheaper Vizio. Net result - no one had a favorite. They all did like the better audio (six speaker with subwoofer) on the Vizio - (advice - spend the money on better audio)

IMO - buy the least expensive, largest "smart" device possible - take a look at off-angle viewing before you make your decision. BTW - viewing in Best Buy etc is pretty useless ...there is too much light and every device is adjusted to brightest setting.
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Old 11-11-2014, 11:48 AM   #9
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Seems the price of the 4K sets is coming down a lot, as have prices for LEDs sets. I didn't realize plasma sets were even being sold any more due to weight and power consumption, although their picture quality was always good.
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Old 11-11-2014, 11:57 AM   #10
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Yeah, re 4K ... magnified same basic issue as 1280 res ...nothing much out there uses this higher res - other than gaming - which, I suspect is not the core purpose most of us want? :-)
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Old 11-11-2014, 12:43 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DFW_M5 View Post
I didn't realize plasma sets were even being sold any more due to weight and power consumption...
Power consumption was a big concern for me so I researched the issue at length before buying ours earlier this year. The power required for new plasma sets is significantly lower than when they first hit the scene. Still higher than a LED/LCD screen, but not the electricity hog they once were. With outside temps at 90F+ half the year the last thing I wanted in the house was a large electric heater.
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Old 11-11-2014, 12:46 PM   #12
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Originally Posted by REWahoo View Post
I appreciate the fact there are folks like you willing to spend for this new technology. The more who buy the latest and greatest, the sooner prices come down to a reasonable level. I would not have believed a few years ago that I would be able to purchase a 60 inch name-brand plasma TV for under $550, but it came to pass.
You are welcome . Typically, I am not a trailblazer on TV and always bought the last year's model at discount. Then, I've made a mistake of taking DW to Best Buy where they had Samsung 65 flat & curved 4k UHD TV side by side. Really no comparison. We both thought the curved screen looked bigger than the other one. I think we get a larger peripheral view from the curved screen. To make a long story short, we both decided on the curved TV (3D, 4k, better picture quality all helped). For the next several weeks, DW keeps asking "where's the TV?" Then, I hit the on-line to buy one at a deep discount.

We never regretted the purchase. In fact, after watching yet another movie last night, we agreed that it was one of the best purchase we've made recently.
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Old 11-11-2014, 12:55 PM   #13
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I prefer plasma to LED. Better for watching sports...less blurring. Also I think there is less reflection with plasma over LED/LCD.

Sad to see plasma going away. Have a 55, 50 and 40 inch Panasonic. Also a 42 in Samsung. All work great.
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Old 11-11-2014, 04:34 PM   #14
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Sad to see plasma going away. Have a 55, 50 and 40 inch Panasonic. Also a 42 in Samsung. All work great.
Our price point was <$1,000 so we could not get into the 4k LEDs at that price and we also didn't want to pay for smart features that would just duplicate our Chromecast.

But, yes, it does feel weird buying a technology that is being end of life-ed. I image we'll enjoy the picture on this for 5 years or so and then the new LEDs will have come down in price when it starts to wear out.
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Old 11-11-2014, 05:18 PM   #15
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I have a Panasonic plasma and love it! Wonderful color and a nice sharp image. It saddens me that they will soon go the way of the dodo bird.
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Old 11-11-2014, 06:53 PM   #16
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Yeah, re 4K ... magnified same basic issue as 1280 res ...nothing much out there uses this higher res - other than gaming - which, I suspect is not the core purpose most of us want? :-)
1080p contents looks great, more realistic, and 3D like. Real 3D looks awesome - as in theaters. Yup, not whole lot of 4k content are out there: only Netflix, Sony, and another small company offer contents. But there are lots of demos & user posted 4k content in YouTube. It turns out, in addition to traditional 4k video/cameras, new smartphones have 4k video/camera capability.
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Old 11-11-2014, 07:19 PM   #17
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I prefer plasma to LED. Better for watching sports...less blurring. Also I think there is less reflection with plasma over LED/LCD.

Sad to see plasma going away. Have a 55, 50 and 40 inch Panasonic. Also a 42 in Samsung. All work great.

I thought the reflection problem was worse with plasma due to glass screen. Reason why I put it in question form is my Panasonic plasma has always been downstairs in total darkness. I bought a 50 in LED for upstairs that was 60hz. I was concerned there would be blur on hockey games but there is none. In fact even though downstairs plasma is a higher quality tv, I find myself not going downstairs because the games appear fine to me on the cheaper LED. I must admit I am getting 70 in fever though...


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Old 11-12-2014, 11:31 AM   #18
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A couple of years ago, was in need of replacing our family room TV. Research led me to selecting an LG 42" 720p plasma TV. It was the largest TV that fit into the cabinet area. At 42" or smaller, 720p vs. 1080p is negligible viewing difference. Power consumption was the lowest on the govt. rating scale ($15.00 annually). The larger the TV the farther away you should sit for optimal viewing (ours is about 8' from the couch). Keep that in mind when shelling out the big bucks for the larger TVs out there - not to mention their overpowering presence in a room. Plasma's refresh rate is far superior to LCD/LED (no pixelation evident in action scenes). Run your fingers across the screen of an LCD/LED or tap on it lightly - it will most likely exhibit color lines or flashing upon a light tap (plasma is glass and doesn't exhibit this type of plastic screen issue - or scratching the plastic screen if not properly cleaned). I imagine age and use will eventually cause the failure of the plastic screen vs. the longer life rated glass plasma screen.

At that time - manufacturers were eliminating a lot of the connection types available on their TVs (cost reductions). The LG plasma had the most audio/video input/output possibilities. I have it connected to a TIVO, DVD, VCR (yes, a VCR), and home theater system. Pays to always look at the back for connection offering. It gets costly to buy any type of adapter/converter. LG also offered a 2 year screen warranty with the plasma (LCD/LED only went 1yr. at that time, even with LG). Plasma has a predicted screen life twice that of LCD/LED.

Plasma is a little heavier than the plastic screen TVs because it has a glass screen (duh), and it does have more reflection issues in a bright sunny room. From what I've read - plasma went away as it cannot be manufactured under 42" size screens profitably, and screen costs are much higher than the cheaper to make LCD/LED screens. Skinny profits can lead to obsolescence on a quality product (might I mention Pioneer TVs), and to cheaper replacement products. You're not always getting a better product. Plasma TVs should be at a bargain price these days (while you can still find them)...

Edit/Add: I mentioned TIVO as I use over-the-air (antenna) TV. Tivo is my OTA DVR for time-shifting programs, and repetitive commercial skipping. I watch a large percentage of time-shifted TV these days. There are >80 broadcast channels (some are movie channels) in the greater Chicago metro area. They provide amazing HD broadcasts on many of them (better than the current compressed cable streaming IMHO), but you have to remember that currently, all broadcast TV is standard definition and 720p HD (and not 1080p). 1080p takes twice as much bandwidth to broadcast as 720p, and broadcasters aren't willing to spend the money to upgrade to 1080p anytime soon. You can do Bluray DVD or streaming for available 1080p, but regular TV is probably a long way off from 1080p.
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Old 11-12-2014, 11:50 AM   #19
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A buddy of mine that works in million dollar a/v systems in LA purchased plasma over the others due to clarity and "truest black" picture...

His company is the only on the west coast that installs IMAX theaters in private homes to give you an idea of his expertise and he personally sold 2 recently...

my $.02
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Old 11-12-2014, 12:04 PM   #20
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Gotta get far enough into this to understand "true black." While plasma has a basic tech advantage on black, the LED systems that are "back lit" are as good as the plasma systems - this is generally not true of the "edge lit" LED light systems.

Certainly agree that with small screen, 1080 isn't much better than 720 ... so, get the big screen and take advantage of the technology advances ...we thought 60" was going to be too big ... I would happily replace them now with 80" if the cost was reasonable ... and I am a "late adopter."
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