Well, after initially ordering a Panasonic 42PV500, my new 436XDE arrived yesterday morning at 9am. I simply got fed up waiting for PV500 stock, and jumped at the option of buying one of the first of the new Pioneers. I spent a few hours unpacking and unravelling all my AV cables, and by 3pm I was ready to switch it on.... As it replaces a 7 year old 28" CRT, the new screen size is obviously very impressive. I found myself interested in TV programmes I wouldn't normally watch as the picture just drew me in. The Freeview image, using my old and badly setup rooftop arial, is actually extremely good. I didn't expect much as my Humax box had previously failed to get a clean signal. I soon decided I preferred the freeview digital image to Telewest Pace reception using the cheap freebie scart cable. On Telewest, the picture was more washed out looking and overall just looked flatter. My trusty Sony DVP-S735 DVD player was set to work using the scart connection. I then tried switching to component outputs, but as I only have audio RCA phono leads at the moment, I am unsure whether I am seeing the picture at its best? I have ordered a good quality component cable, but that will be another couple of days in the post. On DVD, the image is very clean and crisp, but it lacks a bit of the dynamism, drama, bright colours and punch present on freeview. Probably the cables, hmmm... hope I don't need a new HDMI player and haven't just wasted £60. On DVD, I found the blacks rather grey watching "The Grudge" last night, during the many dark scenes. The living room was very dark, and I could see what people mean by the common plasma effect of what I would describe as backlit blacks. Curiously, I only notice that grey-black effect on some DVD's (particlularly that one), because viewing freeview digital the blacks do look black. I will reserve judgment on blacks until I stop adjusting the settings and my DVD component cable arrives. Overall, the picture is beautifully clear, with bright, vibrant colours and contrast. I have chosen the "Standard" setting and placed contrast at 40, brightness at 0, colour is -9, other settings are default factory. I experimented with 100Hz versus default 75Hz and can confirm that judder appeared at 100Hz. I do not notice any judder on the 75Hz setting... so no complaints there either. I'm impressed with the design, build quality and ease of setup. The piano black screen bezel looks great, and the remote control is very sturdy with a nice brushed aluminium finish. The sound from the Pioneer side speakers was much better than I expected. Easily the best I have ever heard from a TV and ideal for everyday TV viewing. I was a fraction disappointed that the Comet supplied stand was the fixed type. I'm very happy with my new purchase and can't see anyone making this their first plasma being less than delighted. I can't compare it with other screens. I feel intrigued by the idea of optimizing the picture by having a professional calibration carried out. Or can this be achieved by just experimenting? I'm also looking forward to improving the DVD image. Any thoughts whether it's worth upgrading that now??!!