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Harrods Visit

Discussion in 'Plasma TVs' started by johndonovan, Jun 11, 2003.

  1. johndonovan

    johndonovan
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    Went to Harrods today to have a quick look around the plasmas. I noticed a few things which I would welcome comment on as my big day to purchase is looming:

    1. There was a very wide variety of screens in there displyaed really well
    2. All screens were either showing Freeview or DVD mainly with either RGB or component connections - so well set up.
    3. At the risk if herecy, I actually found that 3 screens were significantly better on Freeview than the rest:
    Fujitsu - either 42 or 50" HHA
    Hitachi 42PD3000 (or something similar)
    Sony latest 42" 42B2 or something - sorry didn't really want to wonder round Harrods with a notebook!:blush:

    I guess it re-affirms the value of looking for yourself, but I found both the Panasonic and the Pioneer 50MXE had a more grainy and less stable picture than the ones I mention above. As I will be mainly watching TV, this is key for me. Most looked great with DVD anyway.

    Maybe I'm missing something really key here - and I would welcome any further information I may be missing - but my eyes told me the above.

    I asked the (really nice) guy from Harrods had he had any Fujitsu 50HHA screens returned due to fan noise and he said no, but if anyone out there has lived with one for while I would really welcome the users view as to my eyes that looked the best of the lot.

    Opinions, comments welcome.

    thanks
     
  2. saabfan

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    John,

    I went through the same exercise last Saturday. I thought the two Fujitsu looked very good, including the Alis screen (P42HHA10). The Pioneer looked grainy but please keep in mind this was the 433HDE not the better 433MXE.
     
  3. johndonovan

    johndonovan
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    Thanks - yes I did see the 433HDE, but they also had a 503MXE which I didn't think looked as good as the Fuji
     
  4. IanM

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    I've had the 50" Fujitsu XHA (I think the HHA is 42" only) for about 5 months now and I'm more than happy with it. The picture is superb; it's subjectively better to my eye than either the Panasonic or the Pioneer that are raved about on these forums. It also has an excellent set of connections: HDCP-DVI, VGA, Component and a terminal board slot with 2 options: a SCART socket or both an S-Video & a 2nd component connection. I haven't heard of any plans for future boards, but it's nice to know that the possibility is there.

    People have asked about the fan noise before on this forum and I must admit that it is noticeable during very quiet scenes if you are listening for it. I'd say that anyone who is particularly fussy would be annoyed and would probably be better off with the Pioneer. I am surrounded by computers at work so maybe I'm more tolerent but I honestly never notice it unless I'm listening for it.

    For more information it's best to look at the US avsforum where it is much more common and is probably the current favourite 50" display.

    Cheers,
    Ian.
     
  5. dinarly

    dinarly
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    I’ve been looking closely at the 50 inch models – but not had a chance to see the Fujitsu. From the things I’ve read about the Fujitsu, it does seem to be a current favourite.

    However, a review of Plasmas in What Home Cinema this month (loads of Plasma covered) puts it behind the Panny. The reason is put down to motion artefacts. The review says 'pans and movements leave a glowing, dotty effect'. This issue with the Fuji is also mentioned elsewhere on the forum I think.

    Have you (Ian) noticed this effect on either Sky or DVD?
     
  6. IanM

    IanM
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    I haven't noticed this on mine but I'll have a more careful look this evening.

    Did they test the XHA or the XHS model? The XHS model is due out sometime soon and uses an external AVM+ processor instead of the internal AVM processor used in the XHA. The reason I ask is because the 42" AVM+ models have had some criticism in these forums regarding motion artifacts, and there could be similar problems with the 50".

    Cheers,
    Ian.
     
  7. Spanjab

    Spanjab
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    Get the Panasonic, most of the others lack of a good black will grate in my opinion.
     
  8. dinarly

    dinarly
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    The model reviewed was the P50XHA10ES. The Panny reviewed was the TH-50PHW5. They also reviewed the Pioneer PDP-503HDE (no MXE review) and the Yamaha PDM-1 as well as loads of other sized panels.

    I am tempted to wait for the XHS model – I delayed so long anyway a few more months won’t hurt.

    Spanjab: my understanding is the blacks and colours are at least good on the Fuji. Also, the interfaces make offered on the Fuji make the panel more adaptable than the Panny (and similar to the Pioneer?).

    Apologies if this reply is repeated – the browser spat me out on the first attempt did not seem to get posted.
     
  9. IanM

    IanM
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    The Fuji uses the Panasonic glass and is just as good at dealing with blacks as the Panny. I'd always thought and heard (up until now) that it was better in terms of processing.

    I had a look at the magazine at lunchtime and it is the same model as mine. They really don't like the motion processing do they! In fact they hate it so much that I wonder how I (and dozens of more knowledgeable users on avsforums) have missed it. I'm hoping that it was a problem with their test model. If it's one of those things that you don't notice until it's pointed out to you then I'm not going to be happy!

    One good thing is that they did say that it would have been the best display if it wasn't for that problem. And they mentioned a third videoboard option, which intrigued me. I couldn't find any details on it anywhere on the web though. Does anyone know any more?

    Waiting for the XHS might be a good idea, although by then it won't be long until the new Panasonic is due out...

    Cheers,
    Ian.
     
  10. dinarly

    dinarly
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    I hope in looking for ‘motion artefacts’ that you don’t find them – for your sake and mine.

    I have dithered for so long that I’ve got into the habit of saying a few more weeks won’t matter. My current thinking is that if the new Fuji (50 inch XHS) isn’t due until late this year or later, then I’ll get the XHA (subject to no motion artefacts).
     
  11. johndonovan

    johndonovan
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    from my own (humble) point of view, the main attraction for me at Harrods for the Fuji 50" was that, whilst any 50" screen size does tend to highlight motion artefacts (over, say, a 42"), the fuji was the most rock solid and sharp picture of all the 50" displays I saw.

    But then, what do I know, I'm not an expert reviewer ;)
     
  12. dinarly

    dinarly
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    I found your review very helpful – I’d give it 8/10 – well on the way to becoming an expert reviewer.

    I guess the only way I’m gonna’ tell is by checking it out with my own eyes.
     
  13. IanM

    IanM
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    I spent a couple of hours watching Sky tonight and the only dodgy motion I saw was from England's defence.

    I'll do a more thorough test when I can, but I couldn't see any nasty motion artefacts. Football is one of the most difficult types of program to show on a big screen due to the sheer lack of resolution in the source (roll on HDTV) but it always looks more than reasonable on the Fuji to me. And when I looked carefully the panning and scanning didn't seem to degrade the picture at all (which surprised me) let alone show the problems described in the review.

    I wonder if it was just the source that they used (a particularly dark scene from Road to Perdition) that brought it out. They did mention that using fine mode (which is designed for dark scenes and which I prefer to use most of the time) improved it a lot.

    You're right about seeing with your own eyes because these things are very subjective. The two favourites on this forum (the Panny and the Pioneer) are very different beasts with different strengths. I've always thought that the black levels of the Panny blew the Pio out of the water, but lots of other people prefer the greater detail that the Pioneer shows.

    However, having said that you should see for your own eyes, I must admit that I spent months comparing and contrasting screens and then ordered the Fuji unseen. I based my decision on the fact that it used Panny glass (which was my favourite of those that I had seen); had loads of connections; and got rave reviews in the US.

    I'm happy I did because I've yet to see another 50" display that I personally like as much. I doubt that this situation will last given the rate at which this technology moves, but I'm enjoying it whilst I can...

    Cheers,
    Ian.
     
  14. dinarly

    dinarly
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    Took my own advice and yours and went to see the displays in Harrods. They have a very impressive set-up. It is all Plasma and LCD displays – no CRT’s!

    I checked out the 50 inch panels : Fujitsu (XHA), Pioneer (MXE), Panny (5) and a Sony (didn’t get number).

    The only disappointment for me was the Pioneer. If was a pleasant surprise in that the colours were better than I’d been lead to believe. However, it did have a grainy effect that I couldn’t detect in the other panels.

    The Panasonic was showing a terrestrial program – a very colourful kids programme similar to tellie-tubbies (to set the scene). The colours were stunning and motion very smooth.

    The Sony was being fed from a top end (apparently) DVD machine playing the latest Bond thing. It had a very natural colour and I found it a little easier to watch then the Panny (perhaps the material showing had something to do with it). It was also very smooth and like the Panny didn’t show any of the (slight) graininess I saw on the Pioneer.

    The first panel I found was the Fujitsu and the colours was stunning. This first impression was tempered by after viewing the others but in the end it still had the best balance of colour (to my eyes anyway). It was being fed from a DVD (average quality apparently) showing Austin Powers (the scene where Fat Bast’d is ‘flying’ over the bathers in the Japanese Bath House – too further set the scene). It was on a par with the Sony (IMHO) for smoothness of motion and in the natural colour stakes but seemed to be a little sharper when it mattered.

    I would be happy to spend my money on any of the panels I saw with the Fujitsu, the Sony and the Panasonic particularly close in the picture quality stakes.

    So, all I am waiting for now is information of the release of the Fujitsu XHS (and 50 inch Panny 6) and I’ll go and get one – well after agreement from the wife and the fireplace has been removed and the wall prepared and a low cupboard found and installed, and, and, and…

    Reading back over the posts, I realise I have only confirmed the messages from John and Saabfan – but at least this forms a consensus (for once).

    So John, what do you think of my ‘review’?
     
  15. lumpsucker

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    Dinarly,

    The XHS is due out in September. I'm on the waiting list for one. I too would like to compare the spec of the XHS with a Series 6 Panny 50" but I can find no information regarding a new 50" Panny, either spec or release date.

    I'll post more news on the XHS as I get it.

    Regards

    Simon
     
  16. dinarly

    dinarly
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    Lumpsucker (nice!)

    Joe Fernand has added to the ###STOP PRESS### posting on this forum. He is attending the Panasonic 6 Series product launch (I suspect it will focus on the 42inch model) on the 6th July and has asked that we post questions that we would like answers to.

    So…I’ll post one there asking about the 50inch model (dates, etc).
     

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