SD and HD TV viewing advice

edited 8 March 2013 at 5:51PM in TV MoneySaving
62 replies 9.1K views


  • chili2001chili2001 Forumite
    342 Posts
    I've just bought a multi award winning LCD Panasonic TX-37LZD85 and its a superb tv for the cash, or you could get their top of the range TX-37LZD800 which was too rich for my budget (cheapest i've seen is £950 compaired to £799 for the LZD85).
    They also do some quailty (larger) plasma screens if thats the way you want to go but depending on how much you want to spend I would go for a Pioneer plasma!
  • InactiveInactive Forumite
    14.5K Posts
    Leopard wrote: »

    Sadly, the only person in Parliament who seems to be capable of adding 2 to 2 and coming up with 4 (with no interest payments on it) is Vince Cable - who has been stating for years what was bound to happen but to whom nobody in Government or the Treasury wanted to listen.

    Agree 100%, shame that he is part of an unelectable party.
  • Inactive wrote: »

    Agree 100%, shame that he is part of an unelectable party.

    It's more than a shame; for Britain it's an unfurling catastrophe. Heads are buried firmly in Whitehall's mud, leaving thinking parts pointing optimistically upwards to the moon.

    The really alarming thing is that they still haven't grasped the degree to which the forces they have unleashed combine interactively to fuel an ever-accelerating downward spiral that has now got beyond their control.

    With each successive setback they naively believe that things have finally bottomed-out and are about to improve. Nothing could be further from the truth. And until this finally dawns on them, things will continue to get worse in Britain because its economy will continue to collapse.

    But we had better not pursue this any further, here. :cool:

    Let's get back on topic.


    What I would advise you to do is go to a Panasonic/Pioneer dealer and examine very closely, in both HD and SD modes, a properly set up 42" plasma.

    Then go to a Sony dealer and examine very closely, in both HD and SD modes, a properly set up 40" LCD.

    Upon this experience, and after reading comparative reviews in respected journals to alert you to the factors you need to consider, then buy the television that produces the image that you, personally, prefer.

    These specialist dealers will be doing their hardest to display their product to the best of its ability. Places like Currys, by contrast, will have them adjusted in such a manner as to persuade you to buy something like an LG instead, upon which they would make more profit and earn more commission.

    As to the inherent differences between plasmas and LCDs, a lot of rot has been advanced in this thread by those who have made a large investment in one or the other, have no actual experience of the other type, and are anxious to reassure themselves that they bought the right one.

    This happens throughout the forum. It's the same with the relative merits of PC laptops and Apple laptops (a debate that actually revolves around which operating system the user prefers, rather than the hardware itself).

    The fact of the matter is that the best of both types of television are very good indeed and the unobjective chant the endlessly repeated mantra that they have read somewhere which supports the television they've bought themselves, to the detriment of the other one.

    It's a common human trait. :grouphug:

    You need consciously to overcome that instinct and make up your own mind. Do you want to spend a lot of money and the next few years watching the type of television that somebody else likes best or the type of television that you like best?

    Anyone who witters on about the inability of an LCD to produce a good black level would be amazed if they saw the jet-black colour that a current model 52" Sony can actually produce, together with all the tints that exist between black and grey, when it's been properly set up (or even straight out of the box). But if they've just spent a thousand or few on a plasma because they've been told that that a plasma produces a better shade of black, they don't want to be confronted with that fact.

    It's also true that the top brands of both type have better upscalers than the others and, in consequence, make a better job of presenting an SD image on a large HD panel.

    So, go to the respective specialist dealers and make up your own mind. There is a difference between the image produced by a plasma and the image produced by an LCD - but only you can decide which of the two you prefer yourself. It doesn't matter a damn what anyone else thinks; they aren't going to be spending hours looking at it - but you are.

    If a lot of people didn't personally prefer an LCD to a plasma, Sony would stop making them - because people wouldn't be buying them; they aren't cheap. And exactly the same can be said of plasma televisions. It isn't about scientific statistics measured in a laboratory and printed on a piece of paper; it's about what your own eyes prefer to look at. And only you can decide that.

    aliEnRIK prefers plasmas: I prefer LCDs (and so, fortunately, does my companion!). Marty J likes glossy screens: we hate them. So, are they right or are we? All four of us are right. Our eyes and our visual perception are different. :)

    So, ultimately, if you like to watch television, forget about price, forget about power consumption, forget about technical specifications, bear in mind connectivity, bear in mind reputation for reliability, go to see Pioneers, Panasonics, Sonys and Samsungs in specialist dealers' shops, study them hard, decide which image you like the best and then buy it in the largest size that will fit in your room. :)

    And then enjoy it! :T

    Don't laugh at banana republics. :rotfl:

    As a result of how you voted in the last three General Elections,
    you'd now be better off living in one.

  • aliEnRIKaliEnRIK Forumite
    17.7K Posts
    Part of the Furniture Combo Breaker
    Its not so much that I prefer plasmas. Its that Panasonic plasmas for the price tend to hammer everything else. And Pioneer plasmas are considered the best tvs in the world

    Pioneers also tend to have the best upscaling software so that SD content looks its best. I really dont mind what the make and model is so long as ~
    deepest blacks, correct greyscales and colour calibration, no digital artifacting, ok ish sound (I use an av amp so not that fussed so long as it has an optical out), best scaling software, capability of selecting setup for each and every input (In fact 2 setups for the PS3), plenty of hdmis, several scarts, s video, video, component and vga socket.
    Essentially ~ pictures look as natural as they possibly can. Neither adding nor taking anything away. I want to be able to think that I can physically walk into that screen :p

    You also mentioned plasmas having reflective screens? My girlfriend commented when she first saw my Pioneer that it DOESNT reflect at all and it was kinda spooky being completely black. Personally I hadnt even thought about it till she said

    I would put my tv up against anyones here though (in MY setup). the ONLY once thats clearly better that ive seen is my dads own 50" Pioneer (But then that is classed as the best tv on the planet at this moment)

  • Don't laugh at banana republics. :rotfl:

    As a result of how you voted in the last three General Elections,
    you'd now be better off living in one.

  • aliEnRIKaliEnRIK Forumite
    17.7K Posts
    Part of the Furniture Combo Breaker
    Bigger in this case is NOT better ;)
  • Marty_JMarty_J Forumite
    6.6K Posts
    Leopard wrote: »

    I think I saw that TV in the States; it was about $5,000. It looked amazing.

    I saw more expensive ones though; Panasonics and the like that were $10,000 and upwards.

  • - - - - - Drumroll - - - - - Music - - - - - Lights - - - - - Curtains - - - - - Spotlights - - - - -

    :xmastree: :bdaycake: :bdaycake: :xmastree:
    _party_ :dance: :beer: :dance: :beer: _party_ :dance: :easter_ba :EasterBun:easter_ba :dance: _party_ :beer: :dance: _party_

    Don't laugh at banana republics. :rotfl:

    As a result of how you voted in the last three General Elections,
    you'd now be better off living in one.

  • edited 8 April 2009 at 11:35PM
    cosmicvegcosmicveg Forumite
    25 Posts
    edited 8 April 2009 at 11:35PM
    ccsurvival wrote: »
    I would say that hitachis arent the most expensive, but not bargain basement. What I mean by bargain basement is your goodmans, albas and brands that you have never heard of but seem to be on great offers.

    Saying that however, my original recommendation stands. Your sefest bet is a middle of the road samsung which I would say is an exceptional performer.

    Hitachis are defintely bargain basement, in fact you will find that most Hitachis are made by the Turkish company Vestel. This company probably makes more TV's for europe than any other manufacturer, whenever you buy a TV that is unbranded, ownbranded or an obscure brand name then these guys probably make it. I assure you the quality is poor, very poor.

    I see the plasma / LCD debate never ends :)
    LCD owners will always tell you LCD are better and plasma owners the same.
    It isn't as clear cut as that, some LCD in particular the LG 5000/7000 series offer a picture that can rival any plasma and some plasma offer poor picture quality indeed.
    Without doubt the Pioneer Kuro gen plasma are the finest televisions ever created but that comes at a premium.

    I wouldn't be too concerned with facts and figures, 1080p means very little when it is unlikely that Tv will be broadcast in that format in the forseeable future anyway. The only reason for having 1080p is for bluray and PS3 but its difficult to see the difference unless you're a total nerd with a magnifying glass.

    I would recomend asking for a demonstration using an SD broadcast not the usual HG component video they use in stores. To be honest most branded TV's can give an excellent picture when set up correctly, you would be amazed how many TV's I see with contrast up full and everybody glowing bright red like david dickinson. You don't have to be an expert to set up a decent picture, just set contrast to around 66-75% and watching the news or a chat show reduce the saturation/colour until the skin tones look realistic.

    If youre sat 8 feet away then perhaps you would get a better experience from a 32" in which case you would be looking at LCD. I would recomend sticking with a big brand LG/Samsung/Panasonic/Pioneer. These aren't perfect but the viewing experience is likely to be better.
  • InactiveInactive Forumite
    14.5K Posts
    Good post, all makes sense.:T
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