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Buying a Panasonic 42 inch Plasma

Discussion in 'Plasma TVs' started by ajb, Apr 24, 2002.

  1. ajb

    ajb
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    Hi all

    I've been toying with buying a Panasonic 42 inch plasma for a while now, and having done much digging, I thought it would be a good idea to post some results here. The recent 'best buy' in What Video & TV and HCC will no doubt mean that more people get interested, so the fruits of my labours are given below. Perhaps if the pricing on these becomes more open, we will all get a little lower prices.

    In terms of consumer displays, there are three options:

    (1) Panasonic TH-42PW4B. This is the silver Panasonic model. Claimed 3000:1 contrast ratio, and brightness of 650 cd/m sq.

    (2) Panasonic TH-42PWD4. This is the charcoal grey Panasonic model. Claimed 3000:1 contrast ratio, and brightness of 650 cd/m sq.

    (3) Toshiba 42WP16. This is the Panasonic TH-42PW4B but redbadged.

    Links:
    http://www.panasonic.co.uk/nw/products/category.asp?c=PRE
    http://projectors.toshiba.co.uk/plasma/

    There seems to be a lot of supply problems with option 1 at the moment, so the Toshiba option would appear to be sensible for those after silver.

    Pricing varies incredibly, and presents the usual toss-up between being able to see the plasma in action and having some good after sales care or having it at rock bottom prices.
     
  2. ajb

    ajb
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    In no particular order, and ignoring whether some are with delivery and some without (correct at 24/4):

    (a) www.audio-excellence.co.uk - Website quotes £4999 for both Panasonics, but there is likely to be substantial savings if you ask. No mention of Toshiba. Finance of some sort also a possibility.

    (b) www.sevenoakshifi.co.uk - Website quotes £4499 for the grey and £4999 for the silver, whatever the brand. Likely again to move on price if you ask and finance again a possibility.

    (c) www.ivojo.co.uk - Website quotes £4046 for the grey Panasonic, £3916 for the silver Panasonic and £3824 for the Toshiba. No mention of finance availability.

    (d) www.wedgwood-group.com - Emailed price list gives £4036 for the grey Panasonic and £3936 for the Toshiba.

    (e) www.projected.co.uk - Website quotes £4112 for the grey Panasonic and £3871 for the Toshiba.

    (f) www.audiovisualdirect.com - Emailed prices are £3936 for the grey Panasonic, the silver Panasonic is apparently "Not available from Panasonic in the UK for 2 months Delay" and the Toshiba is £3871.

    (g) www.hispek.com - Website quotes £5499 for the grey Panasonic. Finance available.

    (h) www.totalpanasonic.co.uk - Website quotes £4999 for the silver Panasonic.

    (i) www.dabs.com - Website quotes grey Panasonic at £4999, but £3,824 for the Toshiba. Finance available.

    (j) www.prcdirect.co.uk - Website quotes grey (they say black?) Panasonic at £3849, and silver Panasonic at £3879. No finance available.

    (k) www.plasmania.tv - Website quotes £3995 for the grey Panasonic. Finance available.

    (l) Sound & Vision Bolton - Phone call revealed they are not going to go lower than £4500.

    (m) www.rgbdirect.co.uk - Website quotes £3885 for the silver Panasonic. 0% finance is available on selected products.

    (n) John Lewis - No branches stock the 42 inch plasmas. Silver Panasonic can be specially ordered for £5995. Free 5 year warranty, but happy to be knowingly undersold on this product.

    (o) www.robertwhyteltd.co.uk - Website lists the silver Panasonic at £4399 but proudly boasts that they "will match any non grey plasma price and offer 6 months interest free credit".

    (p) www.empiredirect.co.uk - Website quotes the silver Panasonic at £3833 inc VAT and inc RCA board but excluding stand.

    (q) www.audiotechcroydon.co.uk - Website quotes the silver Panasonic at £4437 and the Toshiba at £4112.

    (r) www.ediscount.co.uk - Website quotes the silver Pansonic at £3782.

    (s) www.krishav.co.uk - Website quotes £3995 for the grey Panasonic. Finance available.

    (t) www.intoav.com - Website quotes £4220 for the grey Panasonic.

    (u) www.av-sales.co.uk - Website quotes £4124 for the grey Panasonic and £3845 for the Toshiba. They are about to implement finance.

    (v) www.discounttv.co.uk - Website quotes an amazing £3399 for the grey Panasonic and £3999 for the silver Pansonic. Finance available online.

    (w) www.homecinemaheaven.co.uk - Website quotes £5499 for the silver Panasonic. Finance available.

    (x) www.plasmapoint.co.uk - Website quotes grey (they say black) Panasonic at £3906 with free Panasonic RV-41 DVD player(worth about £250), and the Toshiba for £3948.

    (y) www.tmfsolutions.co.uk - Website quotes the Toshiba at £4046. The commercial version of the grey plasma is also available at £3860.



    So, the lowest price is www.discounttv.co.uk for the grey Panasonic, which is delivered for £3399. If you order from there, please say you saw the deal on the forums. This might encourage them to discount in the future to forums members. The company are completely new to me, and I believe their website has been up and running only a few days. I found it by chance through www.google.co.uk. A nice Lancashire lady confirmed to me 25/4 that she had stock of the screen available.

    I make no claims about service, authorised dealers, after sales etc etc, but rather I am just attempting to make the waters a little clearly over pricing.

    If any dealers read this and are thinking "well, if I could get everyone off this forum who wants to buy one to purchase from me for £3600 and give them 12 months interest free but still make enough to keep me in milk and water" or something similar, do let us know.

    Regards
    Andrew

    PS. I should point out that I don't work for any retailer and that I am yet to purchase, and have provided this information as a result of my own interest in purchasing.
     
  3. Blu-rayx

    Blu-rayx
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    wow, good info!!

    saves me looking around :D

    thanks


    dvd
     
  4. JSW

    JSW
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    ooooo Total panasonic are doing the AE100 pj for 1239 :)
     
  5. Joe Fernand

    Joe Fernand
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    AJB

    Plenty homework - even saves me price checking :)

    You missed one important site though!!!

    If we were to supply the TH-42PWD4BX to you at £3600.00 incl. vat and 0% credit we would have to stick to water alone as we could not afford the bread.

    Also you missed out the quality of the pre and after sales service you are looking for - interesting to note how many approved and non approved suppliers there are out there

    Best regards

    Joe
     
  6. benji_m

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    [From Spectre (admin) - Yep, sorry - had to remove the contents of this post as it was self-advertising. Same rules apply even to site sponsors - sorry Ben but I know you understand :)]
     
  7. Pyara

    Pyara
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    I too have been contemplating the idea of a 42" plasma, unfortunately the wife prefers a new kitchen. Nevertheless, I was looking at a Philips model 42PF9952, does anyone have anythoughts on this???
     
  8. Guest

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    I Called them earlier today and was given a price of £4000 (which included delivery) and the stock is available.Who did you speak to?
    I deal with a guy called george there give him a call and he will sort you out:devil:
     
  9. alanrob

    alanrob
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    Got to say that sub 4 grand for a 42" Panasonic Plasma is very tempting :D

    Pity I've gone and spent a fortune on a new kitchen :(
    Better start saving those pennies :)
     
  10. MartinN

    MartinN
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    Here is my option, for what it's worth....

    I had also spent time looking around, found a few sites cheaper than Joe at www.tmfsolutions.co.uk - but if you are going to spend £3500+ on a plasma who wants to take a risk?

    I'd rather spend a bit more cash knowing the thing is going to turn up, and it's what I want.

    A lot of people on this forum seem to have ordered stuff from Joe, and so far no one seems to have a bad word him. He's been very helpful with all of my questions.

    I'm about to order a Panny 42" in charcoal - I was going to go for a silver, but I've convinced myself the charcoal will look ok with my furniture - and save myself £200, which will pay for part of the stand that I'm after (again from Joe)

    Martin
     
  11. encaser

    encaser
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    If you don't mind lack of DVI socket upgrade, the 37" silver is going for £3026 at ediscount.co.uk
    They only do consumer models, I phoned and checked and the price right.
     
  12. Frankmo

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    I saw an NEC 42in Plasma in a shop window in Leeds, display model priced at £2999.

    Picture looked pretty good.
     
  13. encaser

    encaser
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    Just an addendum really first, but it'd appear a few more places are lowering price points - especially the 37".
    If Panasonic set/recommend the prices, which according to several dealers I've spoke to state as so, it'd appear that different companies have different sales levels or length of custom with Panasonic to account for varying reseller pricing. As there is no unity on pricing even with authorised dealers, which is a good thing for the consumer, but makes high priced dealers look like they need to re/take the business ethics course.

    One thing I did note as unusual, is that www.av-sales.co.uk list the BNC board as an add-on extra. I was told by more than one dealer that said board, allegedly, ships direct with the plasma from Panasonic, so what's that all about? Perhaps Joe could clear the issue? I was under the impression that if, allegedly, a consumer chose the DVI board that they would essentially still have the BNC board as a 'spare' and that the £300+ DVI would take its place onboard. In other words you'd have the BNC regardless? Otherwise the cost of the DVI board is rather more in real terms.
    :confused:
     
  14. Blu-rayx

    Blu-rayx
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    i'm new to all this,can someone please tell me what is a DVI board :confused:



    thanks


    dvd
     
  15. encaser

    encaser
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    Digital Video Interface. It allows you to connect, say, a pc graphics card with DVI output direct to, say, a plasma screen with a direct digital to digital signal. In theory - and practise - this offers the best uncorrupted signal as no conversion has taken place, particularly if the pc outputs the native rate resolution (i.e. the plasma screen is 852/480 and this is the size the pc sends) of the plasma then no internal scaling is done by the plasma. It just shows what is sent in essence.
    Confused, you will be?!
     
  16. Joe Fernand

    Joe Fernand
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    Encaser

    Just like you guys haggle and hustle so do the dealers - some keep more of what they can get back; others pass on the savings to the end customer.

    Two points to clarify (I think I'll start charging retailers for my time!!!)

    01. DVI interface is NOT available as standard or as an add on board on either the Consumer or the Commercial 37" Panasonic panel.

    02. Plasma display and Video Terminal boards:
    When we purchase from Panasonic we generally purchase two items for every Home Cinema plasma sale*.
    A - The Plasma Display - VGA input only.
    B - A video Terminal board - BNC, RCA or DVI.

    Where we quote a price on-line or in magazine adverts we always include the price of the BNC Terminal board for the 42" and 50" units and the RCA board for the 37" units.

    If a customer wants to order either the 42" or the 50" unit with the DVI Terminal board from new we do not automatic charge and include the BNC Terminal board - unless the customer request it.

    Add about £120.00 to our 42" and 50" pricing if you want to order the panel with DVI from new and around £360.00 if you want to have the BNC Terminal board and the DVI Terminal board.

    Hope this all makes sense.

    Regards

    Joe

    *Many of our commercial installs are VGA only so no video terminal board is required or supplied - watch out for this anyone looking at purchasing a second hand panel!
     
  17. chienmort

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    There are a number of issues here.

    1. Panasonic UK have just improved the warranty on B models.This does NOT apply to E models. B is for Britain and E is for Europe. (TH-42PWD4BX is UK model, TH-42PWD4EX is European)
    2. Some distributors only sell the Black TH-42PDW4BX model with the BNC input board. This is their choice. The Plasma is available to the dealer from Panasonic UK without the BNC board so you won't watse money when you buy a DVI card. Talk to Joe F, he knows the score.
    3. Silver units (TH-42PW4)are NOT available without Phono input board. Check the web site www.panasonic.co.uk. Black units are under Presentation Products.

    Deaddog
     
  18. encaser

    encaser
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    Thanks Joe, I should've been clearer citing the 42/50 for DVI. Perhaps you could do an option list stating the price for dvi from the getgo as an option as on you're site it appears to be overpricing a potential sweeter deal and possibly losing custom?
    Not criticising here but hopefully a helpful 'give back' suggestion!
    ;)
     
  19. Joe Fernand

    Joe Fernand
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    Encaser

    Thanks for the feedback - now I'll have to get my 'how to cut and paste in Dreamweaver' book back out again.

    I'll look at rewriting the pricing without confusing everyone even further - its strange but some potential customers that call in or email find that when I try to explain the various options available its all too complicated and they run down to the nearest TV Hypermarket and just get a 'plasma' TV of whatever flavour is available.

    Regards

    Joe
     
  20. ajb

    ajb
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    Hi all

    Sorry if I delayed telling you about the best prices so far, but I wanted to check them out 100% first.

    So, the grey is cheapest at www.discounttv.co.uk where it is 3399 and the table top stand is 150.

    As for the silver... If you use www.unbeatable.co.uk and their price match policy, they will do it for 3675. Not sure about delivery from there, but the stand is 134. They also offer buy now, pay in 6 months with no extra charge whatsoever.

    Please let me know how you get on guys... money is tight round here so I might not have mine in time for the World Cup afterall!

    Kind regards
    Andrew
     
  21. encaser

    encaser
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    discounttv have sold out of the Black PWD4 and aren't getting more.
    unbeatable only do a pricematch post purchase and with conditions that could catch you out - i.e. if rival reseller no longer has item in stock when they check. In theory you could save around £100 on top of the cheapest, but a lot of balls required, as their prices are high for the Panasonic plasma.
    Most of these pricematch joints put so many stipulations in - the worst being in stock amongst them - that in practise they rarely come off and leave people out of pocket.


    No disrespect to ajb.
     
  22. ajb

    ajb
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    [From Spectre (admin) - I deleted the contents of this post as Andrew didn't make it apparent that he was quoting a retailer. The post initially appeared to FROM a retailer and so I removed it.
    Sorry.]
     
  23. CarlB

    CarlB
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    I got the Black model from Discount TV last week. It arrived on Wednesday this week, though I am waiting for the stand as they have to source one from Panasonic.

    Still, have everything connected and really pleased with it - great picture and so crisp compared with my Toshiba 40WHO8B projection set.
     
  24. Guest

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    Sound and Vision have came back to me also with a price of £3800 (including table top stand,delivery and VAT) or £3900 with wall bracket on the silver model!!

    I can see the plastic take a real hammering very soon:cool:
     
  25. encaser

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    Jorgie, Try emailing unbeatable with the offer, as ajb suggests, and all things being equal (unbeatable charge >£1000) you may slice >£100 off.


    I've found another dealer for the Black PWD at £3455 inc VAT & del, but am waiting on email to see if they are authorised dealers.
    A pricematch would be a handy bonus, but I'm not holding my breath as they are p1ss poor at getting back with more than one sentance. If a result comes off I'll be sure to post.

    Annoying how these resellers can afford to sell cheaper but are content to slay the unsuspecting.:mad:
     
  26. Guest

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    thx encaser, I will try them:p
     
  27. Joe Fernand

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    Hello all

    Been sitting in the wings reading the various posts over the last few days and biting my tongue and I'm sure I'm up for a few flames now but here goes.

    Panasonic Consumer dealers are not authorised resellers of the Charcoal D4 model - just like I am not an authorised reseller of the Silver TH-42PW4B model; we sell the Toshiba clone.

    The dealer who had the D4 on at £3,400.00 had five units at this price - a great price but a bit misleading to say it is their price for this unit. This was a one off deal as Panasonic UK tried to shift some stock at the end of last month; the dealer still has it listed on its site but call in and they will tell you no more to be had.

    For customers waiting on the Charcoal pedestal stand then it will be a long wait - there are none in the UK or Europe until the end of June at the earliest; it may be worth a phone around to find one but don't hold your breath.

    Encaser - we work to a fixed margin on plasma panels and I can assure you we are not 'slaying' our customers. For whatever reason the Pro dealers in the UK were not offered the deal that would have allowed us to supply the D4 model at the discounted rates you have found elsewhere - and as the discounted rate was dependent on the Consumer resellers purchasing a pro rata quantity of Silver panels then the deal was fairly limited in its uptake.

    So happy hunting but maybe some regard for dealers - if we don't make profit we don't exist and who do you turn to when problems occur. You have mentioned elsewhere that you don't really need a dealer because of manufacturer warranties - I would argue the opposite; first off your contract is with the dealer you purchase from not the manufacturer and though the dealers rely on the manufacturers to undertake warranty repairs if you have a problem you will find a good dealer invaluable in fighting your case and ensuring you have your problem resolved.

    Best regards

    Joe
     
  28. johnson

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    I must say I agree with Joe.
    We must realise all dealers are not "made" the same.
    you must be very brave to put your trust and considerable amount of cash into a dealer working on very tight margins(who may not be here in six months)
    Joe seems to have put alot of effort into helping people here,and in my book that shows him to be at least a partially descent bloke.
    I realise that if he's prices were way above others it would be hard to choose his services,but if there's only a small amount in it I would rather deal with someone who seems willing to help with problems.
    I am looking to get a plasma in the next couple of months(I'm waiting for the 43 mxe) and my first port of call will be a phone call to Joe.
    Regards
    Simon
    Any news on the new pioneer anyone?
     
  29. benji_m

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    [From Spectre (admin) - Sorry Ben, had to remove the contents of your post as it is self advertising and this is against the forum rules].
     
  30. CarlB

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    Benji_m,

    I bought my charcoal Panasonic plasma from you (Discount TV)last week and have been delighted with the service so far. I also understand you have been in business for over 20 years and are an authorised Panasonic dealer, so I feel reasonably secure that you will be around for the next 12 months.

    If you do secure any more of the charcoal panels I would have no hesitation in recommend yourselves to anyone that is interested. There may well be some cowboys out there, but I think attempts to besmirch your company are unfounded in my experience.

    Now, I trust I won't *really* have to wait until June for the charcoal pedestal stand as Joe suggested, will I? You quoted me two weeks... ;)
     

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