There was a much-used gag in Warner Bros’ Road Runner cartoons, where Wile E. Coyote would paint a tunnel and road onto a cliff face – and then watch in confusion as a truck drove through it. This 65in Panasonic plasma creates a similar illusion. Its pictures are so large and sharp it’s easy to be convinced of their reality. …
I am sure that it is a great piece of kit, the operative word being "great" as in......
.........frakking gigantic. More seriously it is definitely drool-worthy, however, whilst Mme Arctic Fox is willing (just about) to live with our 55 inch Sammy, another 10 inches (ooo er missus) on the diagonal would mean divorce proceedings! Plus the fact that we would have to sit out on the terrace to be able to watch it from a sensible distance.
And there's the rub.
Apart from my well-documented indifference about 3D, Where would I put it?
This is a Tellie for Essex Millionaires , not the rest of us.
It's not the size..
It's the average power consumption of 500W - that is truly monstrous. Kind of like regularly boiling the kettle whilst watching a normal TV. The picture will undoubtedly be beautiful but in these days of sky-rocketing power bills this is the major disadvantage of plasma over LED.
"This is a Tellie for Essex Millionaires , not the rest of us"
or council estate chav's who just rather spend the money in brighthouse than on personal hygine...
@Mark 65 Power consumption, pah!
You just turn the central heating down - think of the saving!
A rule of thumb for HD content is a viewing distance three times the picture height. However, a projector or monitors from Panasonic's home cinema or profession display ranges may be a better alternative. The review doesn't at all address the continuing flaws in Panasonic TVs. Two years ago their high-end TVs suffered from premature anti-aging algorithms causing black levels to so visibly rise that consumers were eventually refunded by Panasonic UK or retailers. Last year's models visibly multiply render moving high contrast contours in 50 Hz content (the so-called 50 Hz bug should anyone like to research the issue) and suffer from differently unstable blacks. It isn't clear that these issues have been significantly addressed in this year's sets.
"pictures are so large and sharp it’s easy to be convinced of their reality."
I remember thinking the same of the big plasmas at electronics shows in the late '80s...
The EPG will be in daily use. It looks dire, on this 65 inch TV you can't see the programme you were watching in a window ?
It's so heavy (weighs more than my wife) how feasible is it to hang it on a studwork wall ?
90% - really ?
The Panasonic EPG is dire indeed, and is perhaps indicative of the importance that the company places on the user experience. When in the EPG there is no picture or sound, I believe, but surely it is sensible to use external receivers in any case as the TV's PVR abilities are modest.
For more informative TV reviews visits the likes of AVForums.com.
its a 4 and a half grand telly
you pay a pro the 200 extra quid to either cut out the studwork and build a mount box into the wall (frequently done in bathrooms for wall-mounted bogs) or you mount directly into the studs : assuming they're placed at happy distances.
either way, you dont mount something this heavy, and this valuable, by yourself unless you know what you're doing. serious: Im surprised it comes with built-in speakers : who the hell uses built-ins if they're spending over 2k on a screen?
Im not disagreeing with your criticisms, but you're judging this as a regular TV. its not a regular TV : its a massive unit that costs more than a second hand car. If you're shirking from the price of having someone install it, then you shouldnt be spending 4.5k on a TV this big anyway, IMO.
Why would you want to...
...hang your wife on a studwork wall?
Fitted correctly, a stud work wall should be more than capable of carrying the weight of this. And regarding the EPG - I've not seen the one on my TV since I bought it! I think that 90% of the people buying a set like this are going to be using the SkyHD or VirginHD EPG.
If God ...
... intended us to hang 63Kg TV's on the wall we would still be living in caves.
I don't want Sky or Virgin - Freeview HD and then 1080P movies on Blu-Ray or from an XBOX360 will do fine. The EPG will be used for for Freeview HD.
Should not be a problem if you know the studs locations
If whatever you use to hang it to is bolted to the actual studs you there should not be a problem with 60 odd kilos. It is not much heavier than an average kitchen unit fully loaded with plates and these are hanging off stud walls all over Britain. Just buy a stud locator and make sure any bolts go through the middle. One option is to drill all the way through, widen the hole on the other side, sink the bolt head into the wall and plaster over. Another good one is to strip the plasterboard off the "interesting" area and bolt an MDF plate to it instead. Filler, paint and voila - you can hang an elephant off that.
I didn't say I was going to try and install it myself, I know you can get special screws for studwork walls but didn't know if it was even remotely possible at this weight. I tried out the EPG on another Panasonic box, there is no way I'm even contemplating buying a Panasonic set - Samsung have a similar plasma set and the EPG is great.
importance that the company places on the user experience
If I recall an earlier post on El Reg, a User Experience is something one gets from fourteen pints of Guinness and a Vindaloo
It's highly feasible to hang on a stud wall, probably the easiest place to hang it. Hanging mechanisms you can buy from suitable outlets (at least where I am) are rated to 100kg and come with 4" coach bolts (for want of the correct name) with deep thread. You just locate the centre of the stud, pre-drill a hole to prevent the stud being split by the bolt and then ratchet them in. It's a piece of piss. No worries about the thing falling off - you couldn't pull one of these bolts out if you tried and the main stress on them would, I'd guess, be a shearing stress perpendicular to the shaft of the bolt. The plate that hangs on the wall also has a multitude of mounting holes so there's never a worry getting it in the right spot and finding studs to hang it on. I checked with the father-in-law (who's a builder) and he said there's no worries hanging something like that using the bracket I had.
An example bracket is here...
Now I've heard a few stories about ones mount on brick suddenly appearing face down on the floor and would certainly pay to have one fitted on that.
Ethernet & WLAN speeds
The Panasonic specifications don't specify what speeds are supported by the Ethernet port and supplied USB WLAN adaptor - are they 1G and 300M?
Is the PWM noise and the color banding licked?
PWM noise and the banding resulting from color dithering are still what's been keeping me from buying a Plasma to replace my CRT. I just checked out a P42GT30 in a shop and a film like Baraka suffered immensely of it. It almost made me run to an LCD with local dimming like the LG47LX9500 (and I can't abide LCD's). Is the situation better in the VT range?
Pulse width modulation
Dithering is spatial (as opposed to temporal) PWM variously used by PDP manufactures to generate colour shades. Panasonic panels use relatively little dithering producing beautifully clean & natural looking, even serene, pictures from properly adjusted panels in appropriate environments. A consequence, however, is the banding in subtle gradients on their consumer products built-down to a price. Nevertheless, shops are typically poor places to accurately audition TVs & monitors and the VT range is probably the best (if flawed) consumer display available. (I'm unaware of any HD CRT that big, but If available it likely would be quite bulky and expensive.)
3 man lift?
It took 3 of you to lift 60Kg? - You poofs.
Anyway, what's with the non-scrolling background image? The picture is crap anyway, and it just slows down the web browser, all for no reason. The online world lately seems to be going downhill just as much as the real world, I shall be wanting to give up on the online world too soon, where to go from here where things aren't a load of crap?
Do not forget - you cannot grab it just anywhere
So 3 men actually sounds about right. Less than that and if it wobbles for a second someone will grab it the wrong way and voila, here went 4000 quid worth of screen. With a price tag like that 3 people to lift it is not disproportionate.
The actual metaphorical elephant
is the glasses. If glasses are needed then it's nothing more than a "technology preview" and pretty well worthless.
Stop making them bigger, and try making them better.
All I want for Christmas
...is a display like this that's just that - a display, with no additional gubbins. I'm sure Vieracast is lovely and all, but I have an HD box, a DVD player, an Xbox and a surround receiver, so I want the display to be nothing more than a display with no additional tech.
You see these all the time in company canteens and stuff, does anybody know if you can buy these, are they affordable (in a purchase unit of 1) and if they're any good?
The reason I'm asking is that my current Samsung TV has to be manually set to HDMI3 every time I turn it on - it defaults to inbuilt TV. This becomes very wearing over time, and as I never ever inbuilt TV or any of the other inputs it's a complete waste of time.
Facepalm in case I'm being dim.
Spoilt for choice
Yes, Panasonic has several plasma display panel ranges for individual purchase going all the way up to the 4K 152" UX. The VX series is explicitly for home cinema but many prefer the more affordable PF20, although those in the know are looking out for the VX300 to be released later in the year apparently. Just don't expect a cost saving for the excluded tuners, etc..
Get a Logitech Harmony remote control. Cheaper than a new TV and will solve your default input woes
Guide Plus EPG is a complete pain in the ass, I nearly took back my Sony Bravia because of it, before I realised there was a (much nicer) alternative in the options menu.
No such thing on the panny I assume? In which case I totally agree with AC@10:31 - you can't really justify 90% for something which is awful and is a fundamental part of the tv.
I'd rather have a projector with zoom lens to vary picture from 36" (VHS, stupid TV programs, News) to 42" decent TV, to 48"'56" Broadcast HD, to 72" for cinema scope BD HD 2.35:1
Cheaper too. Also nearly 1/5th of people that can tell between photos and objects instantly in real world don't get a Stereoscopic effect at all...
I agree with the earlier poster, 63Kilos is nowt! get to the gym you wimps.
Maybe these sets should just have a 'monitor mode' which seiches off all the internal tuning gubbins.
60kg is heavy for a plasma but nothing for a CRT. My 32" Sony CRT was 75kg and had no handles. Getting it into a first floor flat was a mission
500Watts average!!! What kind of a nutter needs that sort of power consumption just to watch TV....
This is The Register: quite a few readers are probably already contemplating back garden nuke plants as soon as Lewis has finished convincing local authorities of their safety.
Given Lewis' enthusiasm on the subject if.......
.........the local authorities do not play ball he will probably take off and nuke them from orbit.
So, what's in the Panasonic set that's not in the £2500 64 inch Samsung set:
Panasonic - 60Kg
Samsung - 35 Kg
i.e. the Panasonic is 71% more ?
The Panasonic is almost double the price of the Samsung, so maybe it has a bar of Gold inside.
Man that extra 1" weighs and costs a shitload doesn't it?
This seems to be the answer:
"The fast switching phosphors used in the Neo Plasma panels and an original light-emitting process minimise crosstalk (double images) to deliver clear 3D images and ensure comfortable viewing. This technology also helps to improve 2D picture quality."
Samsung = Old plasma technology with nice EPG
Panasonic = New plasma technology for £1800 more but really poor EPG
i don't see how it warrants a 90% rating.
If i spent 4.5 grand, i'd be seriously annoyed to get such a rubbish EPG and i'd be furious to discover that the glasses aren't good enough to watch a movie from start to finish without discomfort
but then, i guess maybe if you have the cash to blow 4.5k on a telly, maybe you have the cash to afford the plastic surgery to make for face fit the glasses
end of an era?
Are all tellies going to come without scart in future?
600 hurts my eyes
The 600Hz "sub-field drive" is the dithering rate that's an artifact of plasma technology. It's not a good thing to have, but a higher number reduces the likelihood of visible flickering on some shades and colors. At least in older models, the built-in Pandora viewer is one of those flickering shades.
You can photograph the sub fields using a sensitive DSLR camera. It's looks very strange.
Is this a posting or an excerpt from an episode of Doctor Who that you're writing?
I have a Panasonic HDC-TM700 which has a 1080-60p, 5.1 surround sound setting and you should see the video it takes played back on this set! Even better yet, when that video is accompanied by a good 5.1 or better sound system the experience is absolutely incredible! I think the term super realistic might be a good way to describe the experience, because I could easily see much greater detail with great clarity then I could during the actual filming. I might add that even the salespeople were astonished, you don’t have to be an,” Expert, if you use the right material. Having said that, I think most people that buy this set will have other, smaller sets for everyday use and save this set for home theater duty.
Superior to what ? Have you seen the video played on a Samsung, LG or Sony?
'63kg on its stand'
...and how much does it weigh when it's -not- on its stand?
And for how long will one have to wait
For enough content worth watching to warrant buying the thing in the frst place?
MKV over network ?
The VT20 only plays MKV from local storage. Can you confirm it plays MKV over DLNA ?
(if so, I should have used a thumbs-up icon :) )
A good end user review
I visit AV Forums for in depth technical reviews, el Reg provides good "barman's reviews" so together there is a balance. Nice one.
I think I'll get the next model down size-wise. What's it called? Oh yeah, IMAX!
Seriously, I can't think of a single room in my house big enough.
Means I need a bigger house :-)
Can you watch it lying on the sofa?
Until my TV doesn’t need me to have one of those posture badges the girls with the brooms right up their arses used to wear I don’t think I'll bother.
Cant think of anything more annoying than coming in to relax after work, cracking open a bottle with a box of treats on my belly only to discover I have to sit nearly bolt upright to 'relax'.
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