: 50" Pioneer Elite Pro-111FD vs 58" Panasonic PZ 800/850

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2008-12-11, 11:33 AM
Opinions wanted as this is my choice due to $$ considerations. Is the Pioneer's picture that much better as to negate the size difference?

The Pioneer seems to also have a more sophisticated anti image retention system which is important to me. The room it will be in is not that big but I still want the biggest picture while obtaining the best picture quality for the 5K and under range.

What would you do given the choice and situation above?


2008-12-11, 12:05 PM
Just my opinion.....The Kuro is argueably the best flat screen TV money can buy,albeit "only" 50 inches. The Panny is no sloutch and is 58 inches.
If your room is not all that big, then go with the Kuro. I had a projector as my only TV and the allure of going big was attractive at first, then I bought a 50 inch Kuro( obviously biased now) and don't regret it for one second. When I see those great blacks and overall picture quality, I know I made a good choice.
Best of luck.


2008-12-11, 12:26 PM
I couldn't agree more. I was planning on purchasing the exact Elite panel you're writing about. I decided to go nuts and grabbed the Elite 60" Signature Monitor (the bank has been calling relentlessly ever since)

It's an amazing panel...that goes for all the Elites, regardless of size. Yes, it's worth the extra cash or sacrifice in a bit of size. The Panny is a good TV, but ain't nowhere near an Elite.

2008-12-11, 01:08 PM
The Pioneer Kuros are widely considered the best panel TVs with Panasonics being second.

However, from what I have read the Mitsubishi Laser TVs are now the best displays available - even better than the Kuros. Aside from the power conservation benefits, they have better colour reproduction.


2008-12-11, 02:11 PM
Been hearing great things about the laser Mits's for a while now. Problem is from what I can gather the $$$ are great too!

2008-12-11, 02:17 PM
get a 60" Kuro, case closed. I moved from 5080 to a 106" Sony projector and now I always stuggle should I watch my new blu-ray on Kuro or projector! and end up I always have to watch the movie twice! The black, the pop up, the realistic color from the Kuro is hard to beat!

2008-12-11, 02:42 PM
If I could justify spending the difference for the 60" PRO-151 I wouldn't be thinking about the 58" Panasonic 800/850 at all but, as my budget is limited, the PRO-111 50" is about as much as I want to spend at present.

2008-12-11, 04:50 PM
Provided you don't put the two side-by-side, the 58" Panny is very nice. I've optimized both and in a totally dark room there is some difference, however, under most conditions, most people will be perfectly happy with the Panny.

I recently optimized a $20k+ 65" B&O TV and the PRO-141 60" Pioneer and yes they were nice, but were they worth the additional $? For people with a lot of money, or who want the absolute best, I guess the answer is yes, but I believe that for most people the answer is probably no.

This is not that much different than someone saying Bryston amps are great - yeah, sure, but... $.

2008-12-11, 07:07 PM
Excellent call 57. All true as far as I can see. Elite is the best, but at a premium correct. I bought the Elite 60" Sig Monitor and so glad I stretched my bank acc't to do so. Still blown away evey time I sit down in front of it!

After all, you will have only ONE of the TVs in your house ie. nothing to compare it to day in, day out...so the Panny is fine if you want the bigger size. If you demand absolute picture quality etc. then go for the 50" Elite.

Put it this way...I've seen the new 55" Sony XBR8...sure, great for an LCD but still can't match an Elite 60" and you're giving up 5" of size for the same cash. No thanks.

Paul Clancy
2008-12-12, 08:08 AM
If dimensionality, pop, depth that cr can bring is important to you then kuro is the best. Also I believe it has superior processing and user controls. If size is more important go with the panny.

2008-12-12, 08:42 AM
Law of diminishing returns comes into effect big time with these higher end displays...

2009-03-02, 01:19 PM
I just joined this forum as I too narrowed my choices to the exact 2 TV's being discussed here. Wondering if Khorn chose one of these yet and thoughts on it. Where I live, I am not able to actually see these displays and rely on reviews. If the TV was not always in a dark room, but one which had natural daylight coming in 2 patio doors on the wall the TV would be mounted influence a decision in either way. Would playing a Wii be a bad idea on either of these TV's due to burn in risk. Right now I am pretty sure I will be ordering the Pioneer 111fd. THanks for any input.:

2009-03-05, 08:42 AM
I bought the PRO 111FD and I think it is the best TV purchase I ever made!

On one short wall end of the room there are three large picture windows covered by wooden Venitian type blinds. The light also falls on the wall where the tv is mounted. There is no problem with light as far as the widow goes even with the blinds partially open. Maybe in the summer when there is more direct sunlight I might need additional window covering at the brightest times but, at this point I doubt it.

David Susilo
2009-03-05, 08:29 PM
I play Wii all the time. NO problem with both my PRO-1150 and PRO-111.

THe biggest problem of the Panasonic, to me, is the additional layer of "protective" glass. It blurs the picture unless you're 100% smack dab in front of the screen. I used to own the 50" 800U and I can't stand the bluriness so a couple of weeks later I bought the PRO-1150.

2009-03-06, 08:41 AM
Or you could consider waiting a couple of months to check this baby out:

The new flagship Panasonic VIERA plasma in 2009 is the Z1 series, with a revolutionary one inch thin panel design and Wireless HD connectivity to deliver the ultimate sleek, uncluttered HDTV viewing experience. Also included on the VIERA Z1 is VIERA CAST web menu with the new streaming HD movie rental capability via Amazon Video-on-Demand. The Neo PDP design of the VIERA Z1 produces a brighter picture, deeper blacks, improved native contrast ratio (40,000:1) and Full-Time 1080 TV lines of motion resolution. Other Z1 model features include; 1080p resolution, a THX Certified Display; an Infinite Black panel; 600Hz Sub-field Drive; and VIERA Link, and VIERA Image Viewer for playing back digital still images and AVCHD videos recorded on SD Memory Cards. The Z1 series will be available in the summer of 2009 in the new TC-54Z1, 54-inch class screen size (54" measured diagonally).

Terry Fraser
2009-03-06, 09:24 AM
THe biggest problem of the Panasonic, to me, is the additional layer of "protective" glass. It blurs the picture unless you're 100% smack dab in front of the screen.
I have 2 Panny Plasma's and I certainly dont see any blurriness at any angle. I haven't seen the Pioneers but for me the Panasonic displays are the best I've ever owned. I understand that its important to some people but having to get a bank loan for a TV is just crazy.

2009-03-13, 02:12 PM
I play Wii all the time. NO problem with both my PRO-1150 and PRO-111.

THe biggest problem of the Panasonic, to me, is the additional layer of "protective" glass. It blurs the picture unless you're 100% smack dab in front of the screen. I used to own the 50" 800U and I can't stand the bluriness so a couple of weeks later I bought the PRO-1150.

The PZ800 has a Anti-reflective screen shield which is a thin coating that has been applied to the surface of the glass. It's only noticeable when the TV is off. In fact, when you're sitting 8 or more feet away there's no way you'd be able to notice the Anti-reflective coating because mine has a few scratches in it (thanks to my cat loving the TV so much) and you've got to be within 3 feet to see them.

The thing that amazed me with the Panny is just how clear the picture was viewing from a wide angle.

Like 57 said, "Provided you don't put the two side-by-side, the 58" Panny is very nice".

And cnet review states: "Yes, again Pioneer's Elite plasmas delivered better performance overall than this (58PZ800), Panasonic's best plasma for 2008, but for all but the most ardent videophiles the extra price to go Elite won't be worth it".

Go with the Panny and put the money you'll save towards a kickass 7.1 surround sound system. The picture is only 1/2 of the package!

David Susilo
2009-03-14, 10:39 AM
whether something is worth the price (or otherwise) is really depend on your visual acuity, your budget and you persoinal caring (or not).

For example, my dad can clearly see the difference between 9G and 8G Pio and 800u in my house although they are not in the same room. His choice for his house AFTER seeing all that? Sony XBR5! Why? Although he can see the difference, he doesn't care about picture quality so making paying for anything beyond the XBR price (close-out pricing at the time, making it cheaper than 800u) is not worth the money.

Me? it's a different story. The differences are too big for my level of acceptability yet I don't have the money to buy another Pioneer plasma, so I sold my 800u and have the 3rd room only using my old 20" Toshiba CRT TV.

Beyond all that, regardless how "clear" a protective glass is, refraction will always be there. It's just simple physics. The further away the protective glass from the light source (ie, the plasma screen itself), the blurrier/hazier the resulting image will get.
I encounter this during my time consulting for commercial theatres and currently in my photography. Even when the manufacturer claim the material to have "zero" effect.
Tu push things further, take a picture with and without lens filter (even if your lens filter is a B+W filter costing close to $200 for a 82mm diameter) You WILL see the difference.
I'm pretty sure that Panasonic does NOT use a $200-grade for 82mm of diameter for their 50" TVs.

Regardless, I do admit and strongly agree that the Pana 800U is a kick butt TV for the money and suitable for most of the population. Just not the best and there many people like me looking and won't settle for less than the best either because of visual acuity or sometimes just because of snobbery.


2009-05-20, 02:07 AM
If I saw the PZ800 in isolation, I would be perfect happy with its picture.

However, I had the opportunity to see the 111 and the 800 side by side in a darkened showroom (Pure mode on the 111, THX mode on the 800) and there was NO COMPARISON WHATSOEVER.

The Kuro demolishes the PZ800 in blacks, shadow detail, pop, clarity, colour saturation, and it does not take a videophile to appreciate the difference. Even my girlfriend said that looking at the Panny after the Kuro was like watching through a foggy haze.

2009-05-20, 10:17 AM
That explains the price diff right? I own a PRO-141, and I still grin each time I turn it on to watch something! Susilo & myself think alike...hard to settle for second best when you've seen THE best right? It is a matter of budget. Personally, I ran out of coin by the time I bought my BD...so I grabbed a Sony S350...couldn't stretch for the Elite BD-05. Besdies, I'm not convinced that the gap between the Pio/Panasonic panel(s) is the same between BD players.

I imagine it won't take more than 2 generations for whomever to manufacture/release a panel that's superior to an Elite (in whatever technology LED/LCD, Plaz, OLED) but for now, they truly are somethin to behold...best of the best. That's the sad part about Pio exiting the TV biz...Imagine their panels in 5 years time???