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Can't demo...Help!!

Discussion in 'Plasma TVs' started by rosbif, Sep 30, 2003.

  1. rosbif

    rosbif
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    So I made a deal with the wife - when we moved, she'd let me buy a plasma screen - and we move in 2 weeks!!!

    My trouble is we live in Paris, where the shops seem to stock a couple of Samsung plasma, but mostly Thomson (surprise, surprise!) So really I am looking to buy blind....

    My choice seems to be down to the Panny 6 or the Hitachi 42PD3000. Both seem to be available for £3000 give or take.

    I will be using it for SKY+ and DVDs - the tuner would be nice but as we can only get french tv is not essential yet ;) I will connect it to a Yamaha RX630 amp.

    Any suggestions? I am thinking that the Panny is the most modern so possibly the right choice, but then the Hitachi looks to be the more complete solution (easier connections and speakers built in for when the wife can't be bothered with the amp) - with a higher res...

    I am thinking of driving over through the tunnel to collect it (av sales?) so if I could see the two together that would be an advantage...

    Any thoughts? (apart from the fact that I am asking the impossible????)
     
  2. MAW

    MAW
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    Witty user name! I should email Liam, he'll see you right, so to speak. Both screens have their devotees here. But you do already have 2 TV tuners, so you have no need of an analogue tuner, and the PW6 is the easiest plasma around to connect.
     
  3. rosbif

    rosbif
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    Thanks MAW,

    It does seem sensible to go for the latest one I must admit... Is the board that Liam is offering (the SCART one) the best idea? The Panny will work out slightly more expensive by the time I add speakers though... And the Hitachi is available from JL with the 5 years warranty...

    Choices, choices...

    Adrian
     
  4. hornydragon

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    Get a panny PA20 PW6 with built features Scart component analogue tuner etc etc a Plasma TV all fully integrated!!!!
    Much better than Hitachi IMHO
     
  5. rosbif

    rosbif
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    Thanks for that - I did see some mention of the circuitry built in adversely affecting the picture quality. Any seen these? Otherwise it would seem like a good option; are the tuner box and connection box separate?
     
  6. RickB

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    Only problem with a plasma with a tuner fully integrated into the screen is the number of cables you are going to have to run to it. It also means changing connections is a pain if the screen is wall mounted etc.

    I would go with the Hitachi - I tried the hitachi, panny and Pioneer HD models before chosing the Hitachi - the Pioneer had the best picture quality with the Hitachi very close behind - the Panny wasn't in the running but it was the standard res. model.

    I chose the Hitachi since I couldn't justify the large increase in price for a small improvement in picture quality of the Pioneer

    The only time the Panny wins over the Hitachi is during PC use IMHO.

    RickB
     
  7. rosbif

    rosbif
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    Thanks Rick,

    Not easy this is it!!! Did you see the series 6 Panny? The pioneer does have some fans here although the Panny and the Hitachi seem to be the main contenders... Is the Pioneer about the same price?
     
  8. hornydragon

    hornydragon
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    The extra circuitry does very little to the panny and Tuner is fully integrated to the back of the set no extra boxes.
     
  9. rosbif

    rosbif
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    But I presume it does mean that all the connection cables would have to run up the wall into the back of the TV?

    Would prefer something that just left one box to be chased in...
     
  10. hornydragon

    hornydragon
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    yes it does but all you need is a cable duct that will take a scart lead!
     
  11. RickB

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    Rosbif,

    No its definately not easy - yeah I have seen the 6 series panny - one of my friends has one (and I viewed it when chosing a screen) - he bought his a couple of weeks before I bought my hitachi - initially I went to buy a panasonic 6 series but ended up being caught in the quagmire that is buying a plasma. Incidentally as I mentioned he now prefers my screen.

    The panasonic 6 was a nice screen - but in terms of picture quality from normal AV sources (DVD/Sky/Freeview/Gamecube) the Hitachi and the Pioneer where in a different league. Only when using a PC did the Panasonic surpass the hitachi in my view.

    The problem with integrated tuners is that if for some reason you want to plug something else in or (like me this weekend - a friend brought his xbox round - easy enough job to plug into my AV box - but had it needed to go into the screen itself it would of been a nightmare !!

    The best advice I could give is that if your seriously contemplating spending £3K - go out of your way to view the screens - even if it means spending some money to do it. Dont be persuaded by anyone elses viewpoint - everyone usually has there own reasons for it - be it a technicality they dont like, be it there own purchase etc. all I can tell you is I went through them all and ultimately decided on the Hitachi !!

    rickB
     
  12. rosbif

    rosbif
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    Rick,

    Dammit, thought I had made my mind up then to go for the Panny and now you say that.... I guess it is going to be impossible to choose without seeing them. And it looks like shipping to France will cost around £150 so it would be cheaper to drive over anyway to collect one...

    I thought that the higher res on the Hitachi would make that better for a PC? Your friend has the Panny 6 and still prefers your Hitachi?

    Oh boy....
    :rolleyes:
     
  13. RickB

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    Rosbif,

    It may be worth driving across to pick one up - assuming you can fit the box in your car (remembering to keep it upright to be on the safe side) as long as they carry the screens in stock.

    That way at least you could look at them yourself - its really not worth taking anyones word for it - I know people who are rabid fans of the Panasonic, the pioneer and the hitachi - so its better to check it out yourself and make your own mind up - just be careful about the way the screens are setup - an RGB or component input will look much better than composite - I know a couple of places who connect up the screens differently - dont know why or if its to try and sell a specific screen over any others..

    The Hitachi flickers a little during PC use (or at least it did for me whilst running 1280x1024 through it) - the image quality is nice and sharp however - I guess its a feature of the ALiS screen used in the Hitachi.

    Yeah - my friend prefers the Hitachi now - he decided against the Hitachi because he had read some negative comments about ALiS. Due to this he never demoed it at the time - he went straight for the Panasonic.

    Which ever screen you go for (Panasonic or Hitachi) neither of them are bad screens - infact both are pretty good so I wouldn't worry too much !! If you want the easy option - buy the Pioneer ;-)

    RickB
     
  14. rosbif

    rosbif
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    Rick,

    Thanks again for taking the time - much appreciated.

    Your last comment is intruiging though -
    What makes you say that?
     
  15. RickB

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    Rosbif,

    In my eyes the Pioneer 433 was the best model all round - good at PC - great picture quality - in the end my decision came down to those two - I chose the Hitachi since I dont use a PC with my plasma and the slightly better picture quality couldn't justify the extra expense - I had the budget for either but went with the Hitachi.

    Dont think many people on here would criticise the Pioneer - its an excellent screen.

    Rickb
     
  16. rosbif

    rosbif
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    OK - so where can I go near the tunnel that can do a decent demo of both the panny and hitachi? I see av sales has the Panny but not the hitachi - anywhere else nearer Folkestone?

    BTW - I presume the connections box on the hitachi is separate so you only have one cable up to the screen itself?
     
  17. MAW

    MAW
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    Liam in Tunbridge wells loks like your man. Got some good deals too. 1 cable + power for the Hitachi, with ingenuity and help from the man you'd have the same for a panny, and no analogue tuner. You are much more likely to find the panny in stock, the PC thing is to do with image scaling, but it does rely on either 3rd party software or a top end graphics card to make that difference worth wile. 852 x480 is not your everyday PC resolution. If you give it anything else you are worse off than with the Hitachi, which scales quite well.
     
  18. RickB

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    Rosbif,

    As MAW said - the Hitachi has one cable plus power to the screen itself. You could do the same with the Panasonic but then you would be incurring extra expense and an external device of some description to provide source switching.

    I can't believe there is nowhere in France that demonstrates Plasma screens - have you tried emailing Panasonic and Hitachi in France to see if they know where the screens can be demonstrated? Seems crazy to have to travel across the channel just to demo a screen.

    RickB
     
  19. rosbif

    rosbif
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    Rick,

    It's not only the demo-ing - it is the buying as well; screens that retail for £3000 in the UK are retailing at €5000 over here, a 15% price hike, and that's if I could find the model I wanted!

    The Hitachi does send pretty 'plug and play' although the offer of the Panny 6 with external scart box and Quintro switch make it almost the same.... But then there is no tuner or speakers.....

    Will have to talk to Liam to see if he can demo the Hitachi too. Or should I see the Panny PMA20 ?? HELP!!!
     
  20. RickB

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    Rosbif,

    If Liam has the Hitachi 42DMA400E then use that as a reference for the 3000 - its the same screen but no seperate AV box - its also High definition compatible.

    The tuner box of the Hitachi does make life easier especially since I use terrestrial TV teletext a lot for football scores etc.

    Either way - make sure you buy the one you are happiest with be it the Panasonic, Hitachi or something else entirely.

    RickB
     
  21. hornydragon

    hornydragon
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    rosbif dont buy without a demo of a PA20 could you get cheap flight to a major city in the UK that has a choice of dealers spend the day and go back to paris with some food for thought! And bring us cheap booze while your here!!:)
     
  22. rosbif

    rosbif
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    Am kind of thinking that I should discount the PA20 as I would prefer all the connections to be in a separate box so they are tucked away... Did find it for £3225 mind at internettvsdirect.co.uk which seems a good price.

    Am thinking of driving up next week to av-sales; trouble is if I decide on the Hitachi that would involve another trip as I would have to get to a JL for the warranty!

    What fun...
    :rolleyes:
     
  23. hornydragon

    hornydragon
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    Liam should be able to offer the warranty at the same sort of price!
    You can have optional speakers on the PW6 but when you add the speakers and tuner module which limits connections you get to PA20 money. A good scart, component and an S-video cable should be all you need and will be almost as easy to run as the cable from the tuner unit!
     
  24. Elvis

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    You'll be lucky to find any 42pd3000's in stock with JL at the moment. If you think you might be interested in one you had better check with them first, otherwise you might have a wasted trip. I think there are some big deliveries coming in early and late october (see the 'first impressions' thread)

    JL can arrange courier delivery of course (although I don't know if that extends to france). Based on my own experience to date I wouldn't reccomend it unless you had no alternative.
     
  25. rosbif

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    I understand from that thread that there is a load arriving on the 3rd... I could always get that one delivered to my parents and then buy them a cheapy ticket over here! Still doesn't help the fact that really I need to see the damn tvs first!!!

    How many connections does the PA20 have in the back? Comparable to the Hitachi?

    This is giving me a headache - might have to go and open a bottle of cheap wine ;)
     
  26. luckydip

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    3 scarts at the back

    I am happy with my pa20, I think its the best complete option. I was worried about the picture quality from my NTL box (skysports). Using a decent scart most channels are great. What put me off the Hitachi was that the picture appeared fake. By fake I mean- I watched a wildlife proggie on it and the lions tail appeared as if it was computer generated. It just didn't seem realistic enough for me. Having said this there are a lot of peeps on this forum that have gone for the Hitachi.

    It has been said many a time before, try before you buy.:)
     
  27. RickB

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    luckydip, I think what you saw was more likely to be related to a badly setup screen. I dont have any of those problems (I used the Avia dvd to set mine up) and the screen looks great.

    RickB
     
  28. MAW

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    With the panny 6 option, you don't need the tuner, you have sky, and the sound from attached speakers gets absolutely nowhere near my aspirations even for tv sound, think of the music channels for starters, let alone movies. (Classic fmtv on in background) I'd rather have bose... now look what you made me do, I'll have to go wash my mouth out, or should that be hands? Any halfway decent amp and speakers will blow plasma speakers away, and generally simplify things, compared to the necessity of having them anyway for DVD. I find Panasonic's remote control for tuners clunky and non-intuitive, ie pants, and the hitachi one not much better. Bear in mind the future, and the probability of a universal learning remote of some sort. That's reason no.1 why I'm so passionate about monitor type plasmas, the TV ones are a total pig in that respect, no exceptions I've ever come across. Horrendous leary macros are the order of the day for pronto remote success, and God help you if they don't all reach their target.

    edit, check out that PMA400, it's the only serious competition to the panny 6
     
  29. rosbif

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    You're supposed to be making this easier!!! :D

    I already have the Pronto 950 so am ready with the macro building; I don't think I really need the tuner option yet anyway although we should make an effort to watch french tele really! I am still torn between the Panny and the Hitachi though, but the missus has now suggested that I really should be more patient and actually see the screens first. Guess that's why I married her! :laugh:

    Will attempt to get to Liams at the end of the month - although I guess that means I will have missed the Panny package deal anyway.. :rolleyes:
     
  30. MAW

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    There'll be another, don't worry. If you've got a pronto, I speak from experience and the heart, tuners are universally awful to do, I have most of the discrete codes for the panny, but not the tuner. It requires 'conext senstive' multiple codes to switch from say, analogue tv to AV2. 1st, tv/av, then av2, which brings up a coloured bar telling you which av you're on, then the 2nd press of av2 within 2 secs, but not before about 0.5 secs, will switch it. But the IR emissions of plasmas means it's not 100%.
    I'm sure you can see where that leaves you. A 2nd press of that command switches you back to analogue tv, it then ignores the av2 code.....
     

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