Great Flat Panel Face-off: Feb/Mar Sound Vision - Canadian TV, Computing and Home Theatre Forums
 
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post #1 of 11 (permalink) Old 2008-01-22, 04:19 PM Thread Starter
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Great Flat Panel Face-off: Feb/Mar Sound Vision

The purpose of this thread is to discuss this article and this article only

The Great Flat Panel Face-off is an article in this months S&V magazine where they compare the Pioneer Elite Kuro Plasma against the LED driven Samsung.

Model Numbers: Samsung LN-T5281F and the Pioneer Pro-110FD

From the summary of the article

Quote:
there was no question that the plasma was our winner, based largely on the incredible strength of its reproduction of blacks

If you have read the article, I welcome your comments.

Posts asking about the article or discussing stuff not in the article will be considered off-topic and deleted.

Last edited by hugh; 2008-01-28 at 02:54 PM.
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post #2 of 11 (permalink) Old 2008-01-22, 04:19 PM Thread Starter
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post #3 of 11 (permalink) Old 2008-01-22, 05:32 PM
 
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I couldn't help but feel the reviewers were slanting towards the plasma during the whole article. While I'm not arguing that the plasma may have won overall, but everytime the LCD beat out the plasma in any minor way it was glossed over.

#1 - cost: Plasma $6,000 LCD $4,500 while the price was mentioned in the article, I feel it should be somehow reflected in one of the scoring systems, maybe quality/value or something.

#2 - picture detail:

Quote:
Picture Detail
The Samsung LCD was slightly better at cleanly reproducing the highest-resolution portion of 1080i and 1080p test patterns, while the Pioneer plasma introduced a bit of noise in that area
Why give them both 10's? Give the LCD a 10 and the plasma a 9.5

#3 - Contrast

Quote:
To the LCD's credit, its less-deep black made for more shadow detail: You could better see the brickwork of the mansion than on the plasma, and there was more detail in a large tree in front of the building. We couldn't have achieved that on the plasma without adjustments that would have sacrificed some of the richness of its black reproduction.
How can you not score points for more detail in the shadow? If I'm sitting in my basement watching a movie without the other tv to compare to, I'm thinking that I'd rather see the detail than just black.

I will note that I may be a little biased here myself, as I'm currently considering buying the Samsung 5271. But I do think that the strengths of the LCD in this review were ignored while the strengths of the plasma were unfairly weighted. Just my humble opinion though.
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post #4 of 11 (permalink) Old 2008-01-22, 05:32 PM
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I read the article this afternoon. Although under the circumstances that they tested, they found a "clear winner", there were several things they failed to mention in the article, or glossed over.

1. What about in less than ideal conditions - say more light in the room, or during daylight.

2. What about SD input (yes I know it's an HDTV).

3. What about burn in (yeah, I know no burn in under HD conditions).

4. And the shadow detail comment really got to me too.

So, if you're in a controled lighting condition and you never watch 4:3, then the Kuro wins, but under those conditions, I'd probably buy the Sony Black Pearl FP.

The article was clearly trying to make the plasma the winner. A very biased point of view. S&V will get a lot of mail regarding this "review". I'm not saying LCD is better than plasma, but I am saying that a balanced report would have been appreciated.

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post #5 of 11 (permalink) Old 2008-01-25, 01:16 PM
 
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Home Theater Magazine has a similar face-off in the February edition. I got mine yesterday. This was a comparison between different technologies (LCOS, Plasma, LCD) with all sets costing around $3000 give or take $500. All panels were 1080p except for the Pioneer 5080HD which was 720p.

Apparently, they somehow hid the edges of each display so the reviewers could not tell which panel they were looking at. They viewed in the dark and light, with SD and HD. They measured contrast ratios and brightness levels. The clear winner was the Pioneer 5080HD with the Panasonic TH58PZ700 coming in second. Again, plasmas rules and Pioneer is on top.

One weird thing, and something to take note of, is that none of the so-called experts noticed that one set was displaying lower resolution, and they actually selected it as having the best picture of the bunch. This is great news for me because I have been struggling with the whole 1080 vs 720 thing since my panel will be about 12 feet away. Everything I have read says at that distance it won't matter, and this just helps to convince me.
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post #6 of 11 (permalink) Old 2008-01-28, 02:58 PM Thread Starter
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Deleted some posts asking for links. These are print articles. If these articles come online then please feel free to post links.

Also deleted some posts regarding which model numbers were compared. To streamline, I have deleted those posts and added the model #'s to post #1.

UPDATE: JVincent has informed me the article is available online at:

http://www.soundandvisionmag.com/fea...l?print_page=y

Thanks jvincent!

But please folks, read the article before commenting!

Last edited by hugh; 2008-01-28 at 04:19 PM.
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post #7 of 11 (permalink) Old 2008-01-28, 09:36 PM
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There was no mention in the article of the power consumption either when the sets were fully on or in stand-by mode. This is to me a serious omission as power usage is going to be an important consideration as we become more aware of how our power usage is affecting the planet.

I too by the way felt that the reviewers were prejudiced in favour of plasma over LCD.
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post #8 of 11 (permalink) Old 2008-01-31, 02:16 PM
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S&V Mag also have the Best of in 2007 Award, and both the Kuro and 5281 are in it, so I don't think they are biased views. I have the 5281 LCD and a Panny plasma and while they are both great pieces they each have thier own merits. In day light, I watch the LCD and at night the plasma. The plasma picture is "grainy" and close to film-like, while the LCD is a crisp and sharp picture, digital-like.

I guess the best to make out of the comparison review is that LCD is in the running now with plasma, where as just a year ago LCD didn't even enter the race. In the future, these comparisons will become more mainstream as LCD enabling technologies (LED back lighting) come to fruit with more manufactures, eg: the soon to be released Toshiba, LG, HiSense, Dolby Vision, and Samsung 82 series.

Did I say Samsung 82 series? Yes, damn, my 4 month old TV is already obsolete! Guess I wait for the upgrade bug to infect me again

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post #9 of 11 (permalink) Old 2008-02-05, 05:23 PM
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I concur with most of the criticisms levied against the S&V shootout
.

One of the things I wish they would do is test the sets in a completely dark room, in a room with a lamp or two on, and in a room with a reasonable amount of sunlight streaming in.

Sure, the way they test might approximate a videophile's viewing room. Then again a videophile may just go the FP route if they are using a dark dedicated viewing room.

The conditions in these tests are not indicitive of the average user. They should also do some PS3/X-BOX/Wii gaming on them as well as lots of people game on their HDTVs nowadays as well.

Not a "real world" evaluation of these two excellent sets. In the "real world" where there is a decent amount of day light viewing and with a lamp on in the evening the results might be considerably different.
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post #10 of 11 (permalink) Old 2008-02-05, 05:32 PM
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All in all I thought they did a fair job.

The viewing angle issue with the LCD would probably have been the biggest issue for me after the black level.

One thing I would have liked to see in the extended test bench is a more graphical representation of their test data. They could have easily plotted the data on a CIE chart to show colour accuracy.

I'd also have liked to see a gamma curve. My experience suggest that 35 ftL of light output might be too high.

Zoo, I think most people who are going to be dropping a lot of $$$ on these sets are probably going to use them in light controlled.
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post #11 of 11 (permalink) Old 2008-02-05, 05:36 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jvincent View Post
All in all I thought they did a fair job.

The viewing angle issue with the LCD would probably have been the biggest issue for me after the black level.

One thing I would have liked to see in the extended test bench is a more graphical representation of their test data. They could have easily plotted the data on a CIE chart to show colour accuracy.

I'd also have liked to see a gamma curve. My experience suggest that 35 ftL of light output might be too high.

Zoo, I think most people who are going to be dropping a lot of $$$ on these sets are probably going to use them in light controlled.
You may be right. However, my viewing room has a fair bit of ambient light (french doors face south-west) and my wife prefers the curtains which allow some light to come through. She also flips through magazines, does work etc while we watch TV at night. Thus, for me a review that takes ambient light into account is important.

For "real" movie viewing we typically have the lights out; but even then there are times we are re-watching an old favourite and my wife will have the corner lamp on.
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