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Do the Panasonic commercial panels have better blacks?

ddlooping

Active Member
Hi all. :hiya:

I am so far disapointed with the black level of all the Panasonic (and others) plasma screens I have seen:
- 37PE500
- 42PE500
- 42PV500
It went from barely acceptable in low-lightning conditions, to really disappointing (darkish grey) in a dark room.
This was after a fair amount of tweaking in their respective menus, including bringing the brightness all the way down and contrast all the way up. :(

Is there a setting in the service menus that would allow for better black levels?
Do the commercial Panasonic panels have better black levels?
Or is it as good as it gets with the current technology?

TIA :)
 

Badger0-0

Distinguished Member
The pannys are accepted as the best blacks.
Try the search facility.
Without trying to sound nasty, I really wonder what you want?
I've never seen a perfect CRT, especially at 42", let alone any other technology..
 

Mep

Well-known Member
I have 2 panny 7 series and the blacks are excellent IMHO....there are tweaks to black available in the advanced settings menu...but you don't need it
 

ddlooping

Active Member
Badger0-0 said:
The pannys are accepted as the best blacks.
Try the search facility.
Without trying to sound nasty, I really wonder what you want?
I've never seen a perfect CRT, especially at 42", let alone any other technology..
1) I know the Pannnys have the best blacks amongst plasmas screen, that's what I have personally observed (I haven't looked at B&O and Loewe though). ;)
2) Why would I need to use the search facility. :confused:
3) What I wanted was to find the blacks on the Pannys personnaly acceptable, so I would have bought one.
I'd appreciate if an ISF guy could tell me if the blacks can be improved via the service menus and/or if they are better on the commercial panels (PWD/PHD as opposed to PE/PV).
4) My Tosh is not perfect, but I wouldn't trade it (unfortunately) for a plasma if what I have observed are the best black levels plasma technology can deliver at the moment.
 

MAW

Banned
The SD pannys are blacker than the HD ones. I don't know that panels are capable of blacker blacks than TVs, but they are much more tweakable, and all screens arrive set up for display in Currys, ie Halogen light. Bright pictures rule, black levels are nothing. My HD glows dimly in a dark room, but appears pretty black with daylight/lights. I am aware it's not the blackest, that would be the PWD. If that is what pushes your buttons, like has been said before, you need to find the display whose shortcomings irritate you the least. If you can trade a spot of posterisation and lack of resolution (believe me this does not matter at all) for the blackest blacks, it may be a way forward.
 

ddlooping

Active Member
Thanks for the reply, MAW. :)

If SD panels have better blacks than HD ones I guess I will have to wait until I can demo a PWD8.
The PE models don't leave me much hope though. :(
 

Badger0-0

Distinguished Member
ddlooping said:
1) I know the Pannnys have the best blacks amongst plasmas screen, that's what I have personally observed (I haven't looked at B&O and Loewe though). ;)
2) Why would I need to use the search facility. :confused:
3) What I wanted was to find the blacks on the Pannys personnaly acceptable, so I would have bought one.
I'd appreciate if an ISF guy could tell me if the blacks can be improved via the service menus and/or if they are better on the commercial panels (PWD/PHD as opposed to PE/PV).
4) My Tosh is not perfect, but I wouldn't trade it (unfortunately) for a plasma if what I have observed are the best black levels plasma technology can deliver at the moment.
I'm sorry, I may be picking flies here, but :

1) You know the Pannys are the best :smashin: Surely you know the screens are better than tellys???

2) Because you asked a question that Noobs ask and I'm sure you already know the answer.

3) How many times do you need to be told they're good, or to go and see it for yourself??? Gordon and Piers haven't discussed it enough??? I refer you to your second question.

4) I totally undestand. But you already know this, so why ask???

To sum up, why ask questions that you already know the answers too????

If your aim is to educate, come out and say so :smashin:
If not, can't you make up your own mind???

Sorry, I'm ranting.
But I don't see why you're asking. You have the knowledge and experience, IMO :smashin:
No offence meant, honestly :rolleyes:
 

gizlaroc

Well-known Member
ddlooping, you are in essex, I am about an hour or so up the M11, why don't you come and see a Panny panel running one evening so you know what they can do?
The offer is there.
 

ddlooping

Active Member
I ask these questions for two reasons:

- Everybody raves about how good the blacks are on Pany screens, including the PV500.
My friend has a ran-in 42PV500 and after having calibrated it with DVE the blacks were extremely poor.
We then turn the brightness all the way down, but this didn't have much effect on the depth of the blacks.
Hence my question about a setting in the service menu.
Either my friend's PV500 is not set-up properly, or both him and I are more demanding in terms of black levels than all the people raving about it.
I also tried a couple of PE50 and could only get the blacks to look a darkish shade of grey.
Both the PEs and the PVs had better blacks than the other plasmas I tired though.

- I have never had the opportunity to demo a Panasonic commercial panel.
I'd like to know if they have better black levels than the TV versions.
I don't think that question has already been clearly answered by an unbiased ISF calibrator or a non self-professed expert.

Let me know if you need more qualifications about my queries. ;)
 

ddlooping

Active Member
P.S: Maybe the following would make my queries clearer.
I am tempted to order the 42PWD8 from Alastair (av-sales), but I would be gutted if the blacks were the same as on the PV500.
 

ddlooping

Active Member
Thanks, gizlaroc, if it was up to me I'd be there in a sec (well in an hour). :)
I'll try and see if a friend can give me a ride, I don't have a car. ;)
 

dickst3

Novice Member
I would say so. My PWD7 has great blacks (not greys), at least to my eyes. After reading this thread yesterday I was looking out for blacks last night and they were fine.
 

MAW

Banned
I don't think it's been deliberately altered, the bezel colour is right. You need to see one though, for God's sake don't buy on the strength of a photo!
 

Sulis

Standard Member
Yep - you obviously have a very specific look in mind, so don't buy anything until you've seen it. Unfortunately, unless you go to a specialist you're unlikely to see any plasma that's been set up properly (if at all).

It sounds like you know your stuff, so I'm assuming that you moved the PV500s you saw out of Dynamic mode to Cinema. I'm surprised you found the blacks bad, since mine are very good, but of course a completely blank screen will show some luminance.

Or you could just get this: http://www.tomshardware.com/hardnews/20050923_170519.html
 

stevelup

Distinguished Member
MEP, Sorry but I disagree - the photo posted by ddlooping is extremely dodgy.

Just sat looking at my PWD6 now (which is turned off), and the unlit screen is almost exactly the same shade of grey as the bezel. If anything, it's a little lighter than the bezel.

As that photo was clearly not taken in a dark room (you can see the bezel!), then it must have been doctored.

Here are some objective photos - all taken using exactly the same exposure settings.

Unless your monitor is calibrated properly, you won't be able to make sense of these.

Make sure you can see the difference between X, Y and Z on this chart first (borrowed from www.dpreview.com) :-



Lit Room - Panel Off



Lit Room - Panel On



Darkened Room - Panel Off



Darkened Room - Panel On

 

gizlaroc

Well-known Member
That photo tells you nothing mate, sorry.

Turn the brightness up on your monitor 10%, then turn it down 10%. It tells you nothing.

The Panny panels have the best blacks available simple as that, whether they are good enough for you only you can decide.
 

stevelup

Distinguished Member
Gizlaroc - was that directed to me, or to the poster of the original photo?

I thought my analysis was pretty fair?
 

gizlaroc

Well-known Member
Stevelup is that with the brightness down to 0%?

The reason I ask is my PHD6 looks a lot darker than that when showing no signal.
 

gizlaroc

Well-known Member
stevelup said:
Gizlaroc - was that directed to me, or to the poster of the original photo?

I thought my analysis was pretty fair?

No that was at the original photo mate, didn't realise there was another page of posts!
 

stevelup

Distinguished Member
Yep, that is "zero" light output.

I must point out that I'm completely happy with my panel. We don't watch it in complete darkness anyway - we have bias lighting behind the screen.

Steve
 

gizlaroc

Well-known Member
So the brightness setting is down as far as it will go?

I would say my PHD6 is definitely darker than that, but again I am using and lcd to view the photo so I guess I really can't tell.
 

stevelup

Distinguished Member
That is *always* the problem with trying to judge these things using anything other than a properly calibrated CRT monitor.

Unless the Z box on the test chart I supplied you is showing as zero light (which it won't be on an LCD), then there is no way you can properly appraise the photographs.

If nothing else, we have proven the complete futility of looking at pictures :)
 

stevelup

Distinguished Member
Oh yes, almost everybody in the design / publishing trade uses calibrated equipment! We all think it's new calibrating our screens but designers have been doing it since the late 80's...
 

macana

Novice Member
The which blacks are blacker debate is something that can only be addressed by each person's own perspective - go look at the screens and decide for yourself.

My question is a bit different... does someone have a definitive list of the differences between the features/specs of the commercial vs. consumer panels?

At the moment, my perception is that the colour of the bezel is the only difference and since I prefer the charcoal I am leaning towards the TH42-PWD7UY commercial panny.

Any advice/comment?

Thanks in advance for the help.
 

Joe Fernand

Distinguished Member
AVForums Sponsor
ddlooping

The PWD8 and PHD8 should be top of your shopping list - they are far easier to configure and adjust than the TV models.

If the PWD8 and or PHD8 don't go black enough for you then forget it your not going to like any Display - that said both of these Displays can and do produce very decent Black levels and very decent detail in the dark Ares of an image; then again you can use an external Video Processor with finer adjustment and control to eek out even more detail in the low areas of an image than the Displays own processor will show you.

The 'Integrator' Menus that are easily accessible on the Display models allow you to achieve far better control over the Display than the 'User' menus on the TV models.

Keep in mind to using DVE or similar to 'Calibrate' the Display means you are simply 'adjusting' that one Input with that one Signal (usually 480P @ 60Hz) - the Displays have independent settings per Input and per Signal so you need to be able to adjust every Input to suit every source.

Best regards

Joe
 

Joe Fernand

Distinguished Member
AVForums Sponsor
macana

Why not the 8 Series Display?

Potentially makes life a little simpler as its 'HD Ready' and there are no Consumer versions!

Panasonic Consumer have now stopped support for Displays and solely concentrate on the Viera 'TV' range.

The TH-42PWD8BK is Charcoal and the TH-42PWD8BS is Silver - only the Bezels are different.

Best regards

Joe
 

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