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Pioneer PDP-4345HD vs PDP-424MV

Discussion in 'Plasma TVs' started by Asaf, Jul 26, 2005.

  1. Asaf

    Asaf
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    Hi,

    I am from the states but have lived in Thailand for the past 5 years. I have been researching Plasma’s for the past couple of months and have come up with the brand of choice. However, I need some assistance!!!!!

    My mind was set on the PDP-4345HD until I talked with a Pioneer rep from Thailand which made me think twice. That is why I turned to you guys because living in Thailand can be like living on an island. The information is so limited that it’s really hard to make an informed decision.

    Knowing that Thailand does not have and will not have HDTV signals for the next 5-8 years buying a HD ready set may not give any advantage when the native resolution cannot even compare even if my viewing preferences are mainly DVD and Digital cable? He states the professtional model would give me much more clarity with native resolution at 853x480 would be a better selection because I would be sitting only 7 feet away from the screen and he says I will get allot of ‘noise’ on the screen. Also, why pay for HD tuners which could save me over 2k USD. If HDTV ever came I could purchase a separate HD receiver and 853x480 would get me by if I’m not mistaken.

    Any advice would be much appreciated!

    Asaf in Thailand
     
  2. Reiner

    Reiner
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    It is correct that any input signal that does not match the displays native resolution needs to be scaled, which can produce visible artifacts. Some displays are ok at it, others are not.
    DVD and digital cable, or analog broadcast, are closer to 852x480 than they are to HDTV.
    If you don't want to use a PC (can also become a HDTV source!) than perhaps a screen with EDTV resolution is sufficient for / preferrable to you.

    HDTV requires at least 720 pixels, so 480 would not be enough. At best the display would downscale, at worst it won't accept the signal.
    But then again, if you are looking at a time frame of 5-8 years it's probably time for a new display anyhow, so I wouldn't worry too much. ;)

    PS: If you want to ensure HDTV compability look out for equipment that spots the "HD-Ready" symbol, see also this FAQ.
     
  3. Alan A

    Alan A
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    Also, there is a raft of new DVd players out or coming out with HDMi connectors, which (in theory?) should give you a better picture
     
  4. Asaf

    Asaf
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    Thanks guys for your input! Yes, I was comparing the HDMI DVD players to the Progressive scan the other day in the shop between the PDP-43 and I did notice certain improvements the progressive still seemed comparable. The difference doesnt seem to outway the price difference now in Thailand. They are really expensive here compared to the progressive scan.

    Reiner- My thoughts exactly- in 5-7 years I will probably be drooling over another set!

    Asaf
     
  5. Liam @ Prog AV

    Liam @ Prog AV
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    Whatever the source, a plasma with decent processing will make use of having more pixels (of course a bad processor will make a mess of it). The Pioneer TVs being a case in point - they don't look worse than lower resolution screens on account of having to upscale the signal and can use that extra palette of pixels to draw a finer detailed image.

    On the flipside of the coin, HD will playback absolutely fine on the MVE1 (a rebadged NEC VR5) and will look ten times better than DVD does on the same screen despite not having the pixels!! The higher amount of detail per pixel in the signal giving a huge boost even if the plasma is having to downscale the resolution overall.

    The MVE1 is cheaper, and quite a bargain when you look at the connectivity and picture quality. But I would still want the higher res screen if I could afford the option, for better DVD and broadcast TV picture right now, and a thoroughly nice plasma to live with.

    P.S. if the rep thinks the 435 is "noisy" he may have it setup wrong! With sharpness up the mosquito noise on the Pioneer panels is awful. Last one I remember doing was 50" XDE with Arcam DV79 HDMI. Sharpness at 0 was a bit of a mess (anything above was awful), an almost blockiness around fine detail shapes such as skin pores, -1 suddenly lost a lot of this but still looked a little unatural, -2 much better and -3 was spot on balance of softening the image to lose noise, but still looking violently sharp!! All this in three clicks of the sharpness adjustment (which has a huge range something like -10 > +10). Are you able to get to see either of the screens??
     
  6. Asaf

    Asaf
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    Liam,

    Just in time! Thanks for your post because I am going to visit Pioneer Thailand today and compare both these models. I have seen on several occasions the 435 in action but have not seen the MVE1 at all until the rep told me about it and handed me a catalogue. Thailand is really only featuring ‘consumer’ products and most dealers can’t even purchase the MVE1. For the most part the race is between Phillips (made in Thailand) and Pioneer for being the higher end plasma’s in the market. For service it seems Pioneer is rated pretty high here.

    Honestly, I really liked everything about the 435 because of the look, and design of the cabling along with decent reviews. I have recently built a house with a custom home theatre having the 435 in mind so all wires and cables have been run in the walls with built in furniture. The MVE1 could present a challenge because all the inputs are on the side and this means wires could show! The rep says the speaker will hide the wires…. I will see today.

    Also, I felt sitting 7 ft away was just about the standard for a 42-43” plasma so I first thought the 435 was good for future proofing my system. On the other hand Thailand doesn’t have HDTV and won’t for some years. Thinking- would this be a waste of money to buy such a system I can’t really use everything inside? Know what I mean?

    But from your opinion the 435 with higher resolution will produce a better picture because the Pioneer would do a good job at upscale the signal in case of playing a DVD. This is a good deciding factor and really helps me think ‘outside’ the box.

    When it comes down to it the money is not the overall deciding factor because I was already sold on the 435! However, the extra money would be nice to power my 11 ceiling speakers in my house!

    When I decided I thought about the top 3 most important reasons for my buying choice.

    1. Good brand (no reseller in Thailand offers an extended warranty! So stupid but its true!!!)
    2. Future proof to some extent
    3. As clear a picture as possible running DVD and Digital Cable, Satellite systems.

    Knowing you got the ‘noise’ out of the picture that makes me feel great! I will try that today- I doubt he knows how to adjust his set.


    Speaking about future proof! The rep told me a few weeks ago before the posts that the 436 was coming out. However, in Thailand these will be very very expensive and will mean the 435 will come down more which makes another good choice for going with it! Probably not being able to see as many sets as the UK the blacks look pretty decent to me compared to my 29” Trinitron non progressive scan!

    With this said would you agree the 435 is the best decision?

    Thanks,
    Asaf
     
  7. Liam @ Prog AV

    Liam @ Prog AV
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    In your situation I would have the 435. To answer your other points:

    - don't buy a Philips plasma.

    - MVE1 inputs on the side are not really noticeable at all. With the speakers on they're as good as invisible

    - HDTV will make better use of higher resolution, but the Pioneer internal processing will also make a lot of use with those pixels. Theoretically it's an argument between scaling noise, and extra detail gained through aliasing or otherwise. In practice the picture looks better and that's about it!!!

    - no extended warranties??? Blimey. Extended warranties are how electrical high st stores make their money around here lol. Some of the stories I've heard...

    - regarding noise in picture, you also need to look at DNR and DRE or DRT or whatever the two or three noise reduction options are in the advanced settings menu. Most of them want to be off, one of them wants to be at MID or LOW (can't remember) and colour temp wants to be cool. It's been a while I can't remember, I'm sure you can search this forum for members ideal settings.

    - 436 is going to be awesome. Likely to be more expensive than the 435 is now and won't be available until mid-Sept earliest. But yes I imagine that will push the price down on the remaining 435s. At the moment all 435s include a pair of tickets to the US so it's already started.

    - I think the blacks are good enough on the Pioneers. Certainly when well setup you wouldn't really notice there may be something lacking, and the black detail is better than the king-of-blacks Panasonic IMO.
     
  8. Reiner

    Reiner
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    Can you elaborate on that? Just curious ...
     
  9. Liam @ Prog AV

    Liam @ Prog AV
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    I don't often install these screens, but the last one I did exploded spectacularly (no exageration - sparks and thick grey smoke very quickly swamped the corner of the room). Then the replacement turned up faulty (sounds like faulty driver in speaker but also some loose panel was vibrating somewhere which was extremely distracting). All credit to Philips for swapping them out within an acceptable amount of time (Panasonic would have been a nightmare) but on further research it seems I'm not the only person that has had to reinstall a Philips plasma screen more than once until a working unit arrives. I only put the third one in on Wednesday so fingers crossed this is third time lucky...

    7oaks around here are as good as not supplying them altogether, as are a few other installers I have spoken with recently. Is a shame because other Philips products are still the reliable, pleasant to use products they always have been. And I have always liked their plasmas as great televisions that customers find easy-to-use. But reliability issues with Philips plasma screens have gone beyond being just a nuisance and for what is now no more than a slightly above average picture I would rather stick with other brands.
     
  10. Asaf

    Asaf
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    Hi Liam,

    Well- your input and after visiting the local Pioneer Thailand I have now decided to wait for the 436. My rep (Joe) set up both the 435 and MVE1 and gave me as much time as I needed to compare both models. He even gave me a plain DVD and Digital cable feed watching HBO. This really helped me because it was like previewing a real life situation which the quality could be obtained at my home and better if tweaking the adjustments. As you said about the sharpness settings I looked and in all of the test models they have it turned way too high.

    You are exactly right about the 435 up converting and using more pixels to its advantage. I clearly recognized this and also the ‘cinema’ picture where it is completely blown up without ‘grey or black’ bars on the side, therefore the 435 really kills the MVE1 on this. MVE1 looks like all the people are stretched or small and fat. Looking at the 435 the people look very normal with more color clarity, which I enjoyed.

    MVE1 did well when you are sitting really close, but I think 7 ft is still fine for the 435 and with all the settings and adjustments you have mentioned to help reduce the ‘noise’ if visible.

    I have to say the service has been great in the pre stages of Pioneer and he also gave me a really good deal for Thailand prices. I asked him about the 436 and he said that it will be released in October 05 and they have guaranteed the prices to be the same in Thailand as the 435. However, the exchange rate is going up so that will add a little more expense but the discount he has given me is great compared to local retailers. I asked if the 435 will go down in price when the 436 comes out. He said he doesn’t think so because Thailand has a pretty low stock of the 435 currently. Also, the warranty would be 1 year and 3 mo. The stores use the 3 months for their stock. With this being said it makes sense to just wait for the 436 and plus my house I won’t move in until September 1. I can use my existing Trinitron for the time being!

    At the end of the day MVE1 is a nice screen but it’s the past and this is very noticeable in a side by side shootout. Being a professional screen it is has very minimal features.

    Lastly, he also told me that he bought the 435 with 1 pixel burned out. The MVE1 we were looking at also had one burned out. This is the ‘Green’ dot people mention. Well I couldn’t find it until he pointed with his finger. He says that if you buy one like that he can get a really good discount. However, I told him I would pass on that because I would notice it daily and kick myself for saving some $$$$. One good service point in Thailand is even if there is 1 green dot they will replace it. Even though Pioneer expresses it is not covered in the warranty unless its more than 4 dots in the center of the screen.

    Regards,
    Asaf in Thailand
     
  11. Reiner

    Reiner
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    Thanks for the reply, Liam, quite interesting. Have been favouring Pioneer or Panasonic anyway but the latter sold here is only 110V (which could become a problem in case I move to another country).
    Will wait a bit more and see how the 436 looks like though I am still having an eye on LCD, too ....
     

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