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Plasma or LCD TV?

  1. Apr 14, 2007 #1


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    I'm going to buy a new television and I'm torn between two models:

    Panasonic 42 inch plasma TV 2007 model (TH-42PV70) or the
    Sony 46 inch Bravia LCD TV (KDL-46S2030)

    They both are the same price (after 250 EUR rebait from Sony), but the LCD is 4 inches larger. In the store both look really good, although the plasma TV is more vivid and gives a clearer picture (less bland).. but in the store they don't use regular television signals for display so I guess the reality of viewing is distorted.

    Anyone advice, which one to go with? The main concern I have is how both models are going to perform when watching low-resolution internet television streams on them, the store-clerk wasn't really clear on that.
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  3. Apr 15, 2007 #2
    Isnt Plasma supposed to be better viewing?

    They are both huge TV's so I dont think 4" is really gonna make that much difference, I would go for the Plasma. But Guess you should research some more....
  4. Apr 15, 2007 #3


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    I have a Panasonic TH-42PV60 myself, that is the forerunner to PV70 with almost exactly the same prestanda (although a bit ugglier design), and I just love it!

    The basic "rule" is to chose plasma if you mainly are going to watch dvd:s and low resolution tv, and to chose LCD if you mainly use it as an ordinary computer screen.
    When watching high resolution material (such as HD-DVD, Blueray or downloaded HD material) none of the techologies is in general superior. (Both usually works extremely well!). This is of course assuming the tv:s are HD-ready, which all fairly new screens are (including your competitors).

    For some reason (probably due to good advertisement), most people tend to favour LCD infront of plamsa. However, this is really without any good reason. There have been blind tests were most people thought plasma delivered a better picture, despite most were convinced in advance that LCD was better. True is though that in the future LCD may win the race due to lower production costs, but we're certainly not there yet...

    So, in general I would not recomend buying LCD for watching low resolution movies. In my eyes LCD has two major problems:
    1. Since LCD screens are using backgrund lighting, they have problems with producing dark pictures (since the pixels are always leaking a bit). This means for example that when watching star wars the space may look a bit dark blue instead of black.
    2. Due to the finite response time (in comparsion to the instantanous plasmas) the picture may appear a bit "lagging", especially when watching fast motions, like in sport games. However, for LCDs with low response times this may not be very noticable at all.

    On the other hand plasmas used to have problems with screen burns. However, for newer ones (like TH-42PV60 or TH-42PV70) this is not a problem unless you show a static picture for like half a day (hence plasmas may still not be good as pure computer screens).

    Now, since I don't have any experience with KDL-46S2030, I cannot really make a fair statement. S2030 comes with a digital tv-reciever, which PV70 lacks (although personally I rather buy an external one anyway). PV70 has two HDMI-connections (compared to one for S2030), and as always the plasma has better contrast. The resolutions are almost equivalent, HD-ready but not full-HD (whatever one needs that for...) in both cases.

    Since you seem to get the Sony for a pretty good price, it may anyway be worth considering. After all 46" is bigger than 42"...
    But in general, I prefer plasma.
    Last edited: Apr 15, 2007
  5. Apr 16, 2007 #4


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    Thank you EL for your thorough reply :smile:

    When viewing some of the lesser-quality LCDs I did see a lot of lagging taking place during fast action and also a lot of floating pixels and I couldn't understand why people would buy those, but since Sony has some of the best LCD technology it was a strong contender against the plasma.

    It was hard to decide whether to go for the sharpness of LCD or the contrast of plasma, since I've never watched television on a plasma or an LCD screen for an extended period of time and didn't know which one I'd really like. In the end my gut-feeling told me to go with plasma, the fact that love yours really makes me happy. The new model does look really sleek, with the glossy black framing!

    I ordered the plasma TV yesterday on internet, so I can't wait for it to be delivered. Serendipity was probably watching over my shoulder that evening, since my current TV broke down just a few hours later! A burnt chip :redface: I still get an image, but it is now hour-glass shaped :rolleyes:
  6. Apr 16, 2007 #5


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    Congratulations Monique!
    I'm sure you will like your pana!
    I know what you're going through waiting for it to arrive...:smile:

    Just remember to switch from the disturbing "dynamic" mode to "normal", and turn off all automatic picture improvements, since all these stuff really do more harm than they help.
    During the first 100 hours of watching it could also be a good idea to reduce "brightness", "contrast", etc below 50% (or even lower), in order to minimize the already tiny risk of screen burns. (The plasma is most sensitive when it's new.)
    This needs to be done separately for all connections you're using.
    (All above under the assumption the settings for pv70 works the same way as for pv60.)

    May I ask how much you payed for it?
  7. Apr 17, 2007 #6
    My bro-in-law is an engineer for the LIRR and they used to use plasma in their control stations (not cheap ones either) and they stopped because besides a killer burn in of the track lines they would fail completely on a regular basis.
    I bought a 32" LCD for my bedroom and the picture is fantastic. I looked at both and even though the plasma picture was marginally better I think the LCD will be a better buy in the long run.

    I left brand names off because every manu makes such a huge range of models that specifics would be close to impossible.
  8. Apr 17, 2007 #7


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    Thanks for the advice, I'll definately do that.

    Sure, I got it for really cheap: EUR 1175,- (new, without shipping). In the store they were about EUR 1650,-

    What are the 'track lines' that you are talking about?
  9. Apr 17, 2007 #8


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    For 32" you don't have much of a choice. Since the plasma pixels cannot be as small as LCD pixels, you hardly find any 32" plasmas (at least I havn't), and if you did it would certainly be a low resolution screen.
    But indeed there are several pretty good 32" LCDs on the market, but for larger sizes you'll generally get more for your money buying a plasma.
  10. Apr 17, 2007 #9


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    That's a very nice price!
    The cheapest one I can find here is about 1500 Euro including shipping. (Which also is what my pv60 costed when I bought it three month ago...)
  11. Apr 17, 2007 #10
    I've had a plasma and have now got a 42 in Sony bra via and would only swap it for a larger version. However If you've got a small room and will be sitting relatively close to your TV less than 6 ft then i would go with the plasma beyond 6 ft and i would go with the LCD but in general both look poor close up if you buy a large one.

    Also old programs say two years or old tend to look crap on both types the quality of the oldish recordings dont do them any justice at all but newly recorded programs mostly look excellent, and high definition is amazing.

    One other thing the quality of the picture of both types degrades over time but LCD TVs can last almost twice as long as the plasma .

    And as for Sony, I'm on my third and the other two are still working well in the kids rooms one of them is an 11Y old 32 inch wide-screen and is still as good as new. Sony use quality parts and they very rarely go wrong.
    Last edited: Apr 17, 2007
  12. May 7, 2007 #11
    LIRR is the Long Island Rail Road.
    I assume Vadslram means that the screens got the names of various train lines burned on.
  13. May 8, 2007 #12
    Even though you have already made your purchase, I will add my thoughts to this thread:

    Forget plasma. These screens tend not to use less than a constant 500W of power, and that is very wasteful.

    I recommend using LCD, not dedicated televisions but PC monitors. LCD uses much less power and any difference in quality is insignificant and does not take very long to get used to - I speak from experience.

    PC monitors have greater resolution than televisions and TV is easy to watch using a computer. I would advise against watching television anyway, if you value your mental health and well-being.

    My LCD monitor has been used for watching fast action video, and I had, and have, no problem with 'ghosting' or blurriness with fast moving sequences. Much faster LCD monitors than mine are now available (mine is around 8ms).

    LCD monitors tend to be cheaper than plasma, if money is an issue.
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