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Panasonic 42PE50 v Hitachi 427200

Discussion in 'Panasonic TVs Forum' started by Majid Khan, Jul 25, 2005.

  1. Majid Khan

    Majid Khan
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    Is anyone aware if the pic quality for SD , ie. Freeview and DVD progressive scan on the PE50 is superior to that of the Hitachi 7200 ?

    I realise that the Hitachi is HD-Ready and priced just a couple of hundred pounds more, but assuming my main priority is to get the plasma which has the best picture quality for watching SD content - which would be the better option?

    Is the PE50's contrast ratio of 4000:1 likely to give a more vibrant and colourful picture than the 1000:1 of the Hitachi? and also am I right in thinking that the PE50 does not suffer from the problems/flaws that are present in the PV500 - ie, horizontal line, contrast flickering etc.

    I realise that the Hitachi would be more future proof and it would seem crazy not to go for something which is HD-Ready, but I honestly dont think I will be watching HD for at least another 3 years - well, not unless Sky donate me a free HD box and charge nothing extra for their HD subscription, so maybe I would be better off worrying about HD when the time comes along and I am going to be watching HD content.

    For the next 2 to 3 years, I cant see myself watching anything other than SD, so my main priority is to get a big screen which gives best PQ on SD.

    The three options I am considering are :

    Sony 42MRX1 (was considering the Sony 37XS1 previously but have now decided to go for a 42 inch screen - best PQ I have seen on a plasma - period. Only the price factor that puts me off! £2900 is the cheapest I can find it.)

    Hitachi 7200 (looks good and decent price, the HD thing really is a bonus for me)

    Panasonic PE50 - (seems to have a superb contrast ratio, better blacks than the Hitachi, and also a good price).



    I will appreciate any advice, thanks..
     
  2. Majid Khan

    Majid Khan
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    I've just spoken on the phone to a mate, who's just purchased the Hitachi.. apparently from what he says, the picture quality on the Hitachi is superior to the Panasonics, because they have a picture processing engine, "PICTURE MASTER", which scales low res video to high res and therefore gives a 'near HD' picture on even Sky.

    I'm not sure how true this is, but he sounded quite impressed with his tele.

    Having seen the Sony MRX1 showing Freeview, I realise that the superb pq it offers must be due to its WEGA pic processing engine..

    Is anyone aware if there is any picture processing engine on the Panasonic PE50?
     
  3. superpixel

    superpixel
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    Hi Majid

    All TV's have picture processing - some have weird and wonderful names, some don't. So that doesn't help you - you still have to choose on quality in the end I'm afraid. As it happens, I personally think the video processing of the Viera's is very poor whereas Hitachi's is excellent.

    I'd say the first thing to do is head round to your mate's and check out his 7200 with Sky/Freeview. Then do the same in any shop with the Panasonic - Freeview doesn't change in quality with aerial feed, so it will be at the best it can be- just be satisfied that you've played with the settings to get the best pic possible.

    As for the contrast issue, yes the new Panasonic has very slightly better blacks (indistinguishable in any ambient light though) and a lot more brilliant whites than the Hitachi, but what's inbetween counts for a lot too - this is where the Panasonic looks washed out, lacks depth and shadow detail, whereas the Hitachi gives more depth and a more CRT like picture.

    If you can wait for a couple of months, then the Pioneer 436 and Sony KDE-V42 would be worth adding into the mix too....
     
  4. Majid Khan

    Majid Khan
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    Hey Superpixel, just the chap I was looking for ! :)

    Having looked around and done a bit of research and obervation, .. well what I've decided is that for the time being I'll go for a non-HD 42" plasma, priced at under £1500 preferably.

    I've spoken to the missus and she wants nothing other than a Sony! so I am now seriously thinking about going for the Sony 42M1B (black version) <-- its priced at just under £1400 on RGBDirect ..

    Superpixel, do you have any experience of this set or know of any reviews for it online?

    I am obviously going to get a demo of it from the Sony Centre as soon as I can, and decide whether it is the right choice for me.

    The alternatives I will be looking at are the Panasonic 42PE50 and the Hitachi 5200.. but I would much rather prefer to get the Sony, if it meets my expectations.

    I'm planning to get another plasma later in the year, hopefully a top of the range Sony :) HD-Ready and with awesome PQ... and perhaps take the older one upstairs for my bedroom. I just get this feeling that by Christmas this year, there will be far superior HD-capable plasma technology out there.. so i've got two choices, either wait .. or instead I could get a mid range plasma now and then get a better one later in the year or early next yr.
     
  5. superpixel

    superpixel
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    i don't like to rain on your parade majid but...

    there will be no new HD-ready Sony I'm afraid - their new range consists of just two plasmas (42" and 50") and the 42" is a standard-definition panel (but it does have HDMI and accepts all HD signals). The only other seriously new screen to wait for is the Pioneer 436.

    I don't like the KE-42M1 much - too much solarisation, a subjectively large pixel structure and slightly too intense colours. It is like chalk 'n cheese in picture style to the 42XS1 or 42MRX1. It does however have the best blacks of any plasma screen by far, being truly at CRT levels. I don't think it makes much sense to buy this model when the KDE-V42 replacement is out in a few weeks (with a new panel, new generation Wega Engine, and HDMI).

    I don't like to point you to reviews as they can't be trusted in the slightest. I think if you have a more thorough look at the current models from Hitachi, Pioneer, Panasonic and Sony then you'll get a better idea of what you prefer. Don't forget the Pioneer - rumours of it being poor at Freeview/Sky are just that (there are flaws, but they are there on DVD too!)

    best of luck
     
  6. greeny

    greeny
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    I've just been in a similar situation to you Majid. The question being is it worth paying the extra now for a HD screen.

    I tested the Hitachi 7200, Pioneer 435, Panasonic PV500 against the Panasonic PE50.

    For me the PE50 not only matched the others but was the best of the bunch. (in particular it coped with movement judder/flicker better than the PV500) and was the cheapest.

    My tests were done using SD DVD component outputs to each screen. I also tested using Sky, but all looked poor on demo.

    So I bought the PE50 for £1700 including 5 year guarentee and DVD recorder (availiable for under £1500 with 1 years guarantee/no recorder).

    I am very pleased with the screen which I have had for 2 weeks now, and the sky picture is excellent.
     
  7. Majid Khan

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    superpixel, went down to the Sony centre today and had a demo of the 42M1, I took over a recorded DVD with football just to see how the plasma coped with fast motion, and let me say that I was quite impressed.

    Overall the pic quality was pretty good, although I must confess that having taken a more detailed look at the Sony 42MRX1 - it really is beyond belief how sharp and clear the picture was - the strange thing is, even the football on my recorded DVD loooked razor sharp on that screen, far better than what I could get even on my current 32" Sony CRT.!

    The 42MRX1 is the only plasma that I've seen which really gets your jaw to drop - it is close to picture perfection, in my view.

    It is amazing to think what it would be like with High Def !! wow.

    But yes, the 42M1 while it looked far below the class of the MRX1, it looked pretty good too.. lets say, better than a lot of other plasmas I've seen at Dixons/Comet etc.

    I'm more or less certain that I'll for the 42M1 for the time being, but the 42MRX1 is definitely one that I am looking to get in the future... be it HD ready or not, with pic quality like that! who needs bloody HD ! hehe.

    If anyone has honestly seen a plasma with better PQ than the 42MRX1, please do let me know..
     
  8. Alan A

    Alan A
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    MK
    The screen will never look good in Currys/Dixon/Comet, they don't set them up like a dedicated AV/HiFi shop do.
    Go and have a look at the panny and Pioneer in some of these shops and that will blow your mind!
     
  9. Majid Khan

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    Just to update you superpixel, I've been told by the chap at my local Sony Centre, that Sony has no plans to release a new 42" plasma (HD ready) in the UK.. instead, they are focusing their attention on LCD.. with a couple of 40" LCD panels likely to be released in the next couple of months.

    Apparently the only plasma (with HDMI) avaiilable from Sony in the forseable future will be the W range 50" plasma.


    Anyhow, i'm still looking around -- had a demo of the Panasonic PE50 and while I didn't particularly like the lack of brightness in the pic , it seemed quite dim, but what really impressed me was how well the Panny handled motion.. I visited Comet last week when the cricket (3rd Ashes test) was on and noticed quite a bit of judder on the screens I saw - most noticeably on a Samsung 42" plasma (horrible, absolutely horrible!) - but the PE50 was in a class of its own.. it made the cricket look as smooth as you'll get on a CRT..

    So I guess, the 42 PE50 might well be my best option for the moment.. it has a definite edge over the Sony 42M1 in terms of handling motion, although the colours seem more vibrant and brighter on the Sony.. but i guess nothing is perfect out there..
     

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