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Panasonic th42pwd5

Discussion in 'Panasonic TVs Forum' started by ColinII, Apr 19, 2003.

  1. ColinII

    ColinII
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    I am about to purchase a Panasonic TH42PWD5 Plasma as part of a new home cinema system.

    I will be unsing it for viewing SKY and watching DVDs.

    I am interested in any hints / comments people might have on the plasma and getting the best SKY picture out of it.

    Also, I currently have Tivo and am considering going to SKY+. Opinions please....
     
  2. Jason S

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    Great display you've chosen, I've had one for a few weeks now, and it's fantastic Digital Cable, DVD, XBOX everything looks great. Even the composite signal from the VCR looks better than on my old CRT.

    Even the wife loves it after recovering about 15sqft of lounge!

    Anyway, on to the questions.

    Hints/ Tips

    Use decent quality cables.

    I've even replaced the power lead (made my own 3m one for about £40, using the same components used on all my other kit.) It does make a difference, and has achieved scepetical wife approval.

    I'll get in before everyone else and tell you to get one of Dr Johns converters

    Either RGB - Component or RGB - VGA, your choice, but the quality is fantastic. Don't, I repeat, don't bother with a cheaper one :lesson:

    I use the RGB - Component one (because I have many other component sources and an amp to switch it all), but it's claimed that the VGA convertor gives slightly better results. This is from the designer himself, and is a cheaper option.

    Component also gives you the ability to use the Just option on the display for essentially auto re-sizing the image (4:3 / 16:9), VGA doesn't.

    Beg, borrow or buy a set up disc

    (Avia, Ultimate DVD platinum etc) or use a THX DVD either optimode to setup the display (you need a blue filter for the THX setup and can get them from www.thx.com.

    Once you've done that start saving up for ISF calibration (Gordon F on the forum is the man to call apparently). This is my next big upgrade.

    If you've got a multi function remote, set that up to switch source signals and switch it on and off, then hide the original remote (It stops you "tweaking")

    If the screen buzzes, accept it and move on (unless it's REALLY LOUD). Mine buzzes a little, but it seems that even it's a lottery as to if it can ever get fixed or not, so I chose to not roll the dice in the gamble on repairs stake. It's only noticeable if I listen for it and is about 30dB measured at the back of the panel.



    Opinions on the Tivo / Sky plus.....

    Sky + has 5.1 sound for some channels
    Tivo is more flexible, can be upgraded, isn't tied to sky.

    Why not get Sky+ and keep the Tivo?
     
  3. LeonidS

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    Jason S,

    if you don't mind I have some questions...

    >Use decent quality cables.

    >I've even replaced the power lead (made my own 3m one for >about £40, using the same components used on all my other >kit.) It does make a difference, and has achieved scepetical wife >approval.

    What kind of improvements you got with new power lead?



    >Either RGB - Component or RGB - VGA, your choice, but the >quality is fantastic. Don't, I repeat, don't bother with a cheaper >one

    What are limitations of using RGB-VGA. You have mentioned one ... but would it be possible manually switch between modes?


    >Beg, borrow or buy a set up disc

    >(Avia, Ultimate DVD platinum etc) or use a THX DVD either >optimode to setup the display (you need a blue filter for the THX >setup and can get them from www.thx.com.

    Does any of these discs allow to do PAL calibration ...?

    >If the screen buzzes, accept it and move on (unless it's REALLY >LOUD). Mine buzzes a little, but it seems that even it's a lottery >as to if it can ever get fixed or not, so I chose to not roll the dice >in the gamble on repairs stake. It's only noticeable if I listen for >it and is about 30dB measured at the back of the panel.

    Oh... this is important question. Do you hear buzz when you watch it with low volumes?
     
  4. Luc

    Luc
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    I'm in the same boat, and am going to get a Panasonic at the end of the month - i've got a demo set up on Friday at Audio-T in high Wycombe to give it a run through.

    On the auto-resizing issue, what exactly does the 'Just' option do? Is it like normal pin 8 widescreen switching on scart, but intelligent(ish) dependant on what's on screen? Say i'm watching a 4:3 broadcast in Just mode, and an advert comes on that has faux widescreen - will it strech it to fill the screen or keep it in the correct aspect?

    Given that i hate watching anything in anything other than it's intended aspect, will running Sky through the VGA converter lose me anything? 4:3 will show as that, and 16:9 will show accordingly, or will i always have to manually change it through VGA?
     
  5. ColinII

    ColinII
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    I would happily go for a SKY+ and a Tivo. However, I think this would be problematic as I suspect the two devices would clash when trying to record different things. Also, I don't know if Tivo have provided the infrared codes for SKY+. So my thoughts are probably to go for SKY+ on the plamsa and use the Tivo in another room on my current TV.

    The buzz scares me. Have to say, any buzz and the screen goes back (the people I am purchasing from are doing the install so they can take it with them).

    The person I am dealing with has been a bit hesitant of setting me up with a VGA converter. I think for the same reason quoted above - the lack of auto switching. However, I am interested in the other reasons.

    Now, as a newbie, to look for Dr Johns and find out what is ISF?
     
  6. Dutch

    Dutch
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  7. Jason S

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    With new power lead, the image appears cleaner and sharper. Noticeable to Mrs S, with the "what have you bought now" question being asked after I'd fitted it.

    The sizing limitation is the only one I'm aware of, as I use component connections. JUST isn't the same as using pin 8 switching, but gives an image based on the detail in the component signal. VGA doesn't carry these signals. I tend to leave the panel on 16:9, did the same with my previous TV too. some news broadcasts and sports programs get black bars down the side and the ineer sections in proportion so it must be being dealt with by the component signal. Don't know if the VGA is progressive though, this may be another reason.


    Can you manually switch aspect on the vga input - yes 16:9 / 4:3 / Zoom are the options

    For PAL, I've used an R2 THX disc with optimode on it to get into the right ball park. There's a setup disc from a german firm I cannot recall the name of that does PAL and NTSC, but was a bit pricey.

    The panel remembers separate settings for PAL & NTSC. Took me a while to apply this even though I'd been told it a couple of times, R1 perfect R2's had reds way too rich.

    This set up is done to a gifted amateur level, but since paying 4 figures for the panel, I'm getting it ISF calibrated for my main sources as soon as possible.

    Buzz at low volumes - only if I mute the amp and really listen for it (sad, bordering on obsessive). Some people seem to get it worse than others. I watch a lot of movies post 11pm, and have to have the sound really low to keep Mrs S happy, and I don't find it an issue.
     
  8. LeonidS

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    >With new power lead, the image appears cleaner and sharper. >Noticeable to Mrs S, with the "what have you bought now" >question being asked after I'd fitted it.

    Any recommendations how to do this?
     
  9. Luc

    Luc
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    Ooo.. what new power lead? Is it specially sheilded with lead or something? I'm all up for spending money on leads, especially ones my friends can berate me about later..
     
  10. wattsj

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    Jason S,

    Have you noticed any 'flicker' on your Panny. I've read in this forum that certain people have noticed a flicker and bearing this in mind it's putting me off buying the Panny.

    Jay
     
  11. Spanjab

    Spanjab
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    Biggest advise is don't get the tuner for it, OK so the RGB tv signal is better than the S Video from Sky plus but the detriment in the component picture is bad.

    I am thinking about getting one of those RGB to VGA converters instead for Sky plus and sticking to component for DVD, PS2, XBox and Gamecube.

    By the way, same screen as me and it is first class! :)
     
  12. Jason S

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    Power lead - ingredients

    3m of lo-rad from Supradirect
    1 MK Tough plug from B&Q
    1 IEC plug from Supradirect (Wattagates don't fit the panel so save your money)

    I've also used some braid and some heatshrink on it, but these are pureley cosmetic

    Mix all of the above together in the obvious manner, and there you have an upgraded power lead. The lo-rad has a special shield film around the cabling, and the earth lead uses a conductive sheath. - Better info on supradirects site

    Got the idea from the diy forum, and have this lead combination on all my kit now. :smashin:

    I'll post a pic of a shorter one later in the week.


    Flicker - no, not one bit, I actually tried to look for it using peripheral vision (much more sensitive to that sort of thing). Yet I can perceive the flicker of flourescent lights when in the office.......
     
  13. ColinII

    ColinII
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    Power cable sounds good. Will give it a go.

    Can anyone quantify to me the differences in picture and sound quality between using RGB or Component for SKY? If RGB wins out I will live without the direct switching through my amp (Denon A1SR)
     
  14. Jason S

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    I've never connected mine via RGB so can't say if it's better / worse. But I have several devices with component connection so opted for that route. Also, connection via RGB uses the composite connection for the synch which would have conflicted with my VCR (only composite connection I've got)

    I've got to say that NTL / Sky via component is simply stunning via the JS converter, and DVD / XBox via component are both far better than on any other connection.

    If you've only got RGB components then the RGB connection coud save you the cost of the convertor, but if you've a selection of connections required it's worht considering.
     
  15. Luc

    Luc
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    Can anyone say either way if Sky Digital is better through a JS > component or > VGA converter?

    I've got a dvd25, gamecube and PS2 that can go through a component switch, and then a UK Xbox that can be daisy chained through Sky and sent through a VGA converter to the plasma.

    But i could route the Xbox/Sky through a JS component converter and into the switch, have everything through the component connections and leave the VGA free for now. Any ideas?
     
  16. Jason S

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    Dr John Sim whose company make the converters has saind in the past that the vga is slightly better visually than the component.

    Cosidering he's actually promoting a cheaper converter it's a recommendation I'd trust.
     
  17. wattsj

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    Well, I've pretty much decided on buying the TH42PWD5 after viewing it at the AV-Sales show on Saturday and reading lots of good reviews on this forum.
    But, I'm confused as to which JS box to buy.
    I have a Sony DAV-880 (no scart) so would connect that to the panel using component.
    Liam (AV-Sales) then recommended connecting my Sky + to the VGA port on the panel using a JS RGB - VGA box. But after reading about this not auto-switching I'm now very confused.
    Using the VGA method, would I have to keep manually switching the screen size depending on the program\film ?
     
  18. Jason S

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    I believe that's the case, although I suspect most of us leave the display set to 16:9 anyway.

    You could invest in a component switcher nad use an RGB to component convertor, I've been considering the Audio Authority one, but that's a further expense, and may be unnecessary if you don't feel the need to keep switching aspect ratio's.
     
  19. NonPayingMember

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    wattsj - TBH I go to my Dad's D5 through the d-sub and have never been bothered with it auto switching, in fact I barely even bother changing it anyway with the Sky box pretty much throwing out the best widescreen it can!

    You could go component switcher, or you could go AV amp with component switching built-in. You could go even further and just use a Denon 3803 amp (800ish) which will upconvert your VCR, LD and other devices to component too (so just one cable to the plasma!).
     
  20. wattsj

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    Hi Liam,

    Thanks again for your help at the show.

    Forgive my ignorance here but what is the d-sub ?

    I might be calling you soon with regards to buying that screen.

    Jay
     

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