Today I was browsing round a branch of a well known high street electrical retailer and, as you do, I ended up next to the plasmas. A PE50 as it happens. The following conversation occured: Assistant - Can I help you? Me - I'm just explaining to my son the difference between a panel only and a television. A - This is a panel. It's a plasma panel. M - No, I mean just the screen, no tuner or speakers. A - Why would you want that? M - I already have a freeview tuner and I already have an amp and speakers. A - We can't take them off, it's sold like that. A telly with no tuner or sound? I don't think anyone sells that. How much do think you would save anyway? M - I know you don't sell panels, I was just explaining the difference to my son. But seeing as you asked about price, I could get a panel off the net for about £1200 [the PE50 was priced at £1999]. A - We have an LG here for that price and it has speakers. M - But I don't want an LG, they make fridges. A - But LG and Samsung are the best there is. M - Really? A - Yes, they come out with the technology first and then Panasonic and Sony buy it off them and charge more. Look at the numbers, that's a good guide. See here, the Panasonic has a contrast ratio of something like 2000:1 but the LG has 4000:1 and that means it'll last twice as long. As the screen darkens over time and you up the contrast, with the LG you can up it further so you get longer life from your plasma. M - But I still would prefer a panel. [Assistant disappears for a while - just when I was getting into this] A - My manager says that the Staples store up the road have a 42" panel for £499 he thinks. M - But the quality will be rubbish. A - No, it's a plasma. But I doubt that it would have speakers for that price. Never in my life have I heard such crapp being spoken with such conviction.