Discussion in 'Plasma TVs Forum' started by Brogan, Dec 1, 2003.
You're gonna love it. Component from the 868 gives a fabulous picture - can't wait for tomorrow
BTW, I have had no problems with picture drop-outs as reported by 434 users, although input switching does take a couple of seconds.
Sadly I will only have RGB (pass through from Sky) from the 868 until my HDMI lead arrives.
I've got more than enough recorded material on Sky+ to keep me busy for several weeks though so it's no big loss.
Time to unpack those boxes...
Haven't switched it on yet....still sorting out wires, cables, etc.
The big switch on will be later.
I'm trying to decide which celeb' to book for the event .
One thing I will say - the silver speakers are distracting and detract from the overall impact of the screen.
I may well remove them and just use the amp and surround speakers.
Congrats on your new baby.
You got the player, I got the cable, Lets spend lots of money (to the tune of the pet shop boys)
Just finsished connecting it all up.
Next step is to re-calibrate my AX5 speaker set-up as the front speaker has now moved back to the wall (it was previously on top of the TV).
Then all I need is the HDMI cable and I'm all set.
Had a brief panic attack when I couldn't get the PS2 to work via component and then I thought there might be a setting in the config menu...and there was...phew!
And the wife's almost as excited as I am...
I have to say, I'm nearly as excited as you are as I am contemplating very similar kit (PDP504HDE ordered with JL - anyone know of a good pricematch?, contemplating AVi 868, AX5i and B&W Signature 7NT's and CWM 650's for same delivery date). Do let us know what you think right after your power up!
Birefcase, I've seen your PM's and will get around to replying some time later this evening.
Right now I'm a little busy trying to work out what the hell to do with a room-sized cardboard box...
Well just watched Ice Age (SKy+ recording) and it was great.
This is the first time we've been able to put the 504 and AX5 to use together and we are well pleased with the results.
Sky TV via Scart 1 RGB: rubbish - very poor quality picture with lots of noise, blurring of edges, etc.
PS2 via compnent: great (but didn't have it on for more than a minute or so).
PC via VGA port: very poor - lots of ghosting.
DVD: haven't tried it yet due to no HDMI cable and I would only be able to try it via RGB pass through from Sky+ so I'm not going to bother.
Overall the screen looks great but as I have mentioned above, the speakers stick out too much, being silver.
They also look a bit odd, half stuck behind the display.
Watching with the lights off/down low, they are a little distracting so I may move them to below the screen or just remover them altogether.
The remote is very nice, having a metal top case.
The media receiver is also nicely finished and a little retro with the black glossy strip across the front.
One thing is very clear - this display will take a lot of setting up.
I suspect I will get this done professionally as there are so many adjustments, I have a feeling you could be forever fiddling with the settings trying to get it right.
So, could I have bought bettter? Definitely?
Do I wish I'd gone for a Panny or something else (e.g. PJ)? No.
Am I happy? Yes.
Was it worth the £5k+? Of course not! It's a damn TV...
Apologies for the complete lack of "technical" comments but I really couldn't tell the difference between great, good or average so I'll leave that to more experienced reviewers.
Congratulations.... take your time, use the THX optimiser or similar and you will gradually get to the picture that is really to your satisfaction! Yes it takes time! I can tell you, I reported settings twice already and yet I finally got to what I call my best settings last Saturday 28 days after I installed it!
All the best,
Any chance of posting your settings - just in case I missed a post on the 504...?
stupid question alert
Where can I get a THX optimiser?
/stupid question alert
The THX optimiser is included in DVDs using the George Lucas certification. You can find it on Monsters Inc, Starwars I, Starwars II among others. AVIA and Video Essentials are other dedicated discs you can buy for home cinema setup but in my opinion they cost a lot adding little on what the THX optimiser offers already.
My settings are as follows:
Colour Temp Mid
MPEG NR Mid
I tend to use Power Save for all generic viewing.
Settings could vary a bit for each different input but I have tried to keep the above as a general setting.
I've just ordered Starwars II from CD-WOW yesterday so I'll use that when it arrives.
I'll also set my display up and compare the settings to yours and see how we match.
Looks like I'm going to have a few late nights...
Thanks for that Costas. I'll give those settings a go tomorrow (I haven't even touched mine yet!).
Oh I almost forgot...
No dropouts at all in the last 3-4 hours.
Input switching is annoyingly slow.
Are you having any lip-sync problems? I had to dial in a few ms of delay using my Meridian 565. It was very slight, but noticeable.
Im a little confused by your comments on your new purchase.
You start by say that watching Ice Age from Sky+ was great yet you then go on to say that Sky TV via RGB SCART is rubbish.
Do you mean that the movie channels look great but that the poorer, lower bit-rate, channels look rubbish or that all channels have bad noise etc?
Then you say that the PC input is very poor and that only your PS/2 looks great but only viewed for a brief time.
You then sum up by saying that you could definitely bought better but dont say what but rule out the Panny or a PJ and conclude that you are happy with your £5+ grand set up.
Am I missing something? With that sort of review I would be less than happy!!
It would be great if you could elaborate a touch more, as I had a 433 Pio and could never get a picture I liked and returned it eventually, and was starting to think that the newer 434 was a huge improvement I have resisted the urge to view for myself as yet for the sake of my bank balance but from what youve said Im not sure now.
Brogan, congrats and all that. It's been a long time coming. I'm just trying to marry these two statements together:
"Well just watched Ice Age (SKy+ recording) and it was great."
"Sky TV via Scart 1 RGB: rubbish - very poor quality picture with lots of noise, blurring of edges, etc."
So how are you watching your Sky+ if not through the RGB input 1? That's where I input my Sky, and I'm quite happy with it. I have Sky via my VCR in input 2 without the RGB, and DVD via component/prog scan in input 3. Nothing in 4 as yet, and a PC in, yes, the PC input.
Edit - loonatic posted his while I was writing mine. Great minds obviously think alike AND simultaneously.
Generally the quality of SKY channels is poor, although there are some exceptions like BBC1.
It's not something you really notice with a good quality CRT but on a plasma it shows.
I don't have any frame of refernce but it may be what people refer to as posterisation. I'm just guessing though...
Yes, Ice Age was great but I attribute that to perhaps a higher bitrate when it was broadcast and the fact that it is animation.
After all, that's why every demo of a plasma is done with animated moves.
PC input is poor - I'm typing this from the lounge and the characters aren't very clear.
Maybe that's down to a cheap 5 metre VGA cable?
Or perhaps the display just needs setting up properly?
PS2 did look good but I only viewed it briefly - I was basically just checking it worked before putting everythiung back in its place.
As for buying better - I don't think anyone doubts that you can get better - there are no end of posts about the better blacks on the Panny and the better scaling of this, that and the other, etc.
My comment was mainly aimed at those people who would say "but you could have got better". Yes, I know I could have but I'm happy with what I've got. Same goes for my 868 DVD - it isn't the best on the market but I'm happy with it.
Surely that's the important thing - to be happy with what you have and not with what you think you should have based on somesone elses comments?
Bear in mind I only switched it on about 5 hours ago and I haven't even opened up the settings menu yet....
This is my first plasma and although I was prepared for the reduction in PQ compared to a CRT, it may take a bit of getting used to.
P.S. Apologies for any spelling mistakes - I'm typing this in the lounge and the characters are a bit blurred...
See my reply to Loonatic above concerning Sky PQ.
As I have said, perhaps I just need some fine-tuning to optimise the various feeds.
Overall I'm happy and I have no regrets.
At the end of the day, it's only money, you only live once, you can't take it with you, et., etc.
I would like to re-assure you that the 434 is a huge improvement over the 433. I sold the 433 (9 months old) to get the 434! I believe Brogan has still some setup to do and perhaps he has not now necessarily expressed everything as he really meant it.
Please visit all other threads with 434 initial comments from first buyers including myself. Your own eyes and taste will be the judge if you get Panasonic or Pioneer. I tested them both and Pioneer was the winner by far.
I have absolutley no problems with 434 other than the slow switching between the inputs. I am sure that this is because all conversions in the media box are all digital but this is your huge advantage for the picture. I am impressed with performance on sources other than DVD. It is smoother, clearer and crispier with far less atrifacts including analog TV and VCR. My wife spotted it immediately as I was disconnecting the 433 and put up the 434 even before I said anything. Watching sports like football is so much better on the 434,
I am sure later software versions should also address the slow switching but this is definitely not something to stop you buying this beauty....
I'd just like to add to what Costas has said.
The display is a stunning piece of kit but it is (obviously) very dependent on the feed.
SKY is notorious for low bit-rates on some of the channels and this becomes all too evident on a large plasma.
Supply a good quality feed however and the screen comes to life.
I did test a few DVD's last night and even on RGB pass through from the Sky box the picture is superb.
Likewise, PS2 games take on a whole new dimension - it's like looking at the screen through a new pair of coloured glasses.
I also had some time to play around a bit and the picture did improve so I'm sure it's just a matter of fine tuning.
What I didn't want to do was just blithely say how brilliant the 504 is when we all know it isn't.
It does have problems with input switching and the blacks could be blacker but, those "faults" included, I'm still happy I went with the 504 and given the choice, I wouldn't change.
Perhaps my first few posts came across a little too negatively but I was attempting to give an overall balanced view.
Try it, you might like it.
That is a relief Brogan! I can see where you're coming from now. I am about to follow you down the same PDP504/Avi 868/Ax5i route so please do keep us all posted with any hints and tips that you pick up along the way. Costas, Togad and all the other xx4 Pioneers, the same appreciation of your posts applies to you all too!
The Home Gallery is a nice feature too.
The ability to copy files to the PCMCIA card and then display them as static images or as a slideshow is pretty cool.
Ideal for showing off the holiday snaps
Have you tried the JPEG feature ? It is useless for people with cameras above 4 megapixels. (2400 x 1800 size limit). When you convert them on your PC the media box won't display them...
I haven't tried any of my own images but then again, I don't have a digital camera so mine are all scanned.
Surely if you convert the image to the correct resolution, etc using PSP or Photoshop there shouldn't be a problem?
Looking at the files on the card, they are all 1280 x 768 with 24 bit colour depth so I would have thought any file matching that spec' would work?
Nice to hear your screen is up and running.
the 50ins compared to the42/43ins screens always look alot worse with sky and anything else other than dvd so u wont see your setups full potential till then.
but if its like my 503 woz you should be greeted by a very 3D look to the pic esp in bright material and starwars 2 will look fantastic.
Then play a vcr to remember how it once looked. (aaarrhhh get that off)
after spending some time with me m8s 434 868 via hdmi combo i may chuck in me pw5 and get one although ill use the dvi output of the A11.
Sorry for being off topic, but just out of interest Gandley, whats the price difference between an 868 and an A11?
too flippin much
are u sat down
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