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Sammy A650 or Panny Z800U again!!!!

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Old 12-02-2008, 11:49 AM   #1
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Default Sammy A650 or Panny Z800U again!!!!

I saw this review about this 2 TV's what do you think??
Now which one should I buy????


OK, after another trip to the Store to look at a LN50A650 right next to a TH-50PZ800U, I've pretty much made my decision!!!!!.

I'm going with the Samsung.

I put the Panny in THX mode and didn't touch any other controls. Then I put the Samsung in Movie mode and set the sharpness to 0, and the brightness and picture controls to levels that were very close to what the Panny was showing in THX.

By doing that I pretty much nullified the great, fantastic THX mode everyone talks about. I mean, they looked nearly identical in PQ. Except for one thing. The A650 has blacker blacks. It really does. Every time a black scene came on, the Sammy was darker. I don't care what the FL measurements have shown, the dang thing has more contrast than the 800U THX mode. THX mode looked a little washed out in comparison. The A650 popped more.

The other advantage the A650 has over the 800U (in my opinion) is the bezel design. It's a piece of glass all the way around and the menu "buttons" are actually capacitive sensors on the glass. The 800U has kind of a cheap plastic pop-out panel to get to the buttons. The 800U also has that plastic border piece that everyone freaked out about when it first came on the scene, plus the frowny face look on the bottom part. The Sammy is just a simple glass rounded-square border, and has ToC which is cool. Very slick.

Then there's the price. The A650 is going to cost you $100 less EVEN AFTER you have an ISF calibration done. At that point it's going to look a lot better than the 800U THX mode out of the box, no doubt in my mind.

The only advantage the 800U has over the A650 is a better glare screen. By the way I did look for the difference vs. the 550, and I saw what someone else mentioned - the A550 had double-reflections of light and the A650 just a single reflection. This is an important factor for me, but all of the other areas are so compelling that I still think the A650 is the winner overall vs. the 800U.

I was going down the Panny road all the way, and I love Panny
products but Samsung has made a better panel - for less.[/COLOR][/COLOR]
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Old 12-02-2008, 12:39 PM   #2
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Make certain you get the extended warranty. With Samsung, you'll probably need it.
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Old 12-02-2008, 02:41 PM   #3
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Comparing those TV's in a store with high intensity lighting will be absolutely nothing like viewing it in your home. Since all of the professional reviewers have rated the Panasonic the one to beat, neither you nor I have the experience and knowledge to doubt/challenge their conclusions. Choose which you like but do keep in mind what the pro's had to say, go Panasonic.
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Old 12-02-2008, 02:47 PM   #4
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I'd have purchased the TH-50PZ800U before the LN50A650--
I like plasma better than the LCD-- but that's a very good LCD. Now if you meant the PN50A650 . . . Plasma . . .
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Old 12-02-2008, 02:54 PM   #5
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I must admit, upon looking at the Samsung 6 series and up versus the plasma, I probably would have picked the Samsung, especially when it comes to the SD picture quality at Best Buy. Of course comparing the 6 series to the 80U, the 80U was a lot cheaper, so I would have went with the 80U, also because even at 120Hz, that is still not as good as having the Plasma in terms of blurring and high-speed.
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Old 12-03-2008, 06:27 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by monkeynose View Post
I saw this review about this 2 TV's what do you think??
Now which one should I buy????


OK, after another trip to the Store to look at a LN50A650 right next to a TH-50PZ800U, I've pretty much made my decision!!!!!.

I'm going with the Samsung.

I put the Panny in THX mode and didn't touch any other controls. Then I put the Samsung in Movie mode and set the sharpness to 0, and the brightness and picture controls to levels that were very close to what the Panny was showing in THX.

By doing that I pretty much nullified the great, fantastic THX mode everyone talks about. I mean, they looked nearly identical in PQ. Except for one thing. The A650 has blacker blacks. It really does. Every time a black scene came on, the Sammy was darker. I don't care what the FL measurements have shown, the dang thing has more contrast than the 800U THX mode. THX mode looked a little washed out in comparison. The A650 popped more.

The other advantage the A650 has over the 800U (in my opinion) is the bezel design. It's a piece of glass all the way around and the menu "buttons" are actually capacitive sensors on the glass. The 800U has kind of a cheap plastic pop-out panel to get to the buttons. The 800U also has that plastic border piece that everyone freaked out about when it first came on the scene, plus the frowny face look on the bottom part. The Sammy is just a simple glass rounded-square border, and has ToC which is cool. Very slick.

Then there's the price. The A650 is going to cost you $100 less EVEN AFTER you have an ISF calibration done. At that point it's going to look a lot better than the 800U THX mode out of the box, no doubt in my mind.

The only advantage the 800U has over the A650 is a better glare screen. By the way I did look for the difference vs. the 550, and I saw what someone else mentioned - the A550 had double-reflections of light and the A650 just a single reflection. This is an important factor for me, but all of the other areas are so compelling that I still think the A650 is the winner overall vs. the 800U.

I was going down the Panny road all the way, and I love Panny
products but Samsung has made a better panel - for less.

This is NOT a review, but rather someone's ordinary opinion first of all. By the way, there is no LN50A650ln50a650 model. It is a ln52a650 model for the LCD in question.

I already KNOW that comparing an LCD in those ultra bright stores to a plasma in that store will NOT show the true difference in black levels. Believe me, I was expecting much better black levels with the 2 LCDs I own when I judged the black levels in those ultra bright stores. Ditto for the viewing angles as well. When you get them home in normal house lighting the difference between that and my Panasonic plasma are night and day (no pun intended ).

Those bright stores are one of the reasons LCDs have become so popular, but why many buy a plasma for the next display. They hide those two biggest issues with LCDs compared to plasmas. Part of why LCDs have good black levels in a store is because the screen itself is pure black when the screen is off, but when that backlight comes on at home you see black is really dark gray, and when you get off angle that dark gray starts getting a bluish/purple look to it as well.

The REAL pro reviewers have equipment to measure the black levels and they consistently rate plasmas as the best with current tech (excluding the nearly dead CRT tech). It is also funny that he adjusted the LCD to improve it's PQ, but left the plasma in the default THX mode settings. Those settings SHOULD be changed to match the source material but more importantly, the room lighting, which of course the THX mode was never meant to stay at stock settings for display in those ultra bright stores. It was meant for dimly lit rooms in homes, so it is no surprise that given these things that person did made the LCD look better to him.

The best thing someone can do when they want to see the black level difference between LCD & plasma is to go to a smaller video store where they have usually have better lighting that is similar to what you see in a home, and THEN decide which tech is best for them.
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Old 12-03-2008, 05:02 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Loves2Watch View Post
Comparing those TV's in a store with high intensity lighting will be absolutely nothing like viewing it in your home.
My local CircuitCity use very dim lighting.
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Old 12-03-2008, 05:18 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sip View Post
My local CircuitCity use very dim lighting.
I noticed on black Friday that the local CC had the lights in the whole store at about half the normal brightness too. I joked with a salesman that they must have forgotten to pay the light bill and were on backup lighting.

It does make it easier to get a better comparison, but the color of those stores using sodium lamps will still effect the colors & off angle coloration that most LCDs have when viewed at an angle. You also want to make sure BOTH displays are adjusted to the best PQ they can be to do a fair comparison. I saw one post where the LCD was adjusted but the plasma was not adjusted in a bright store and they based their comparison on that.
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Old 12-04-2008, 01:12 AM   #9
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PFC5 moderator,
What you are trying to say is that most of the stores always has so much bright light that we'll never see how a real plasma looks, right?, they do this on purpose?
In Bestbuy Magnolia, the sadly advertised the Panny 50p85u in front of all LCD's ,making a lot of reflection of course ... they should know...!.
Anyways,so far i didn't find a place with experts like people of these forums who
can advise and answer simple questions without trying to sell the old models (trying to get rid of all old stock with funny promos).
If you know places where I can go and see The new Panny Z800U let me know.
Because I feel like this is my Tv already but I've never saw it working, so funny! .
And it seams that this has become the new favorite TV for most knowledgeable people at least in USA.
Now I'm 70% sure that I'll buy the Panny Z800U.
I know the technology is growing and I've seen the new Tv's with 200hz, or the
3D LCD for samsung (I watched in youtube)
but the point is that i dont want to regret at allafter I buy my panny Z800U.
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Old 12-04-2008, 05:01 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sip View Post
My local CircuitCity use very dim lighting.
Unless they use standard incandescent lighting like you do in your home, there is no comparison. I have not seen a big box store yet that doesn't use high intensity lighting even if you see it as dim.
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Old 12-04-2008, 12:03 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by monkeynose View Post
PFC5 moderator,
What you are trying to say is that most of the stores always has so much bright light that we'll never see how a real plasma looks, right?, they do this on purpose?
In Bestbuy Magnolia, the sadly advertised the Panny 50p85u in front of all LCD's ,making a lot of reflection of course ... they should know...!.
Anyways,so far i didn't find a place with experts like people of these forums who
can advise and answer simple questions without trying to sell the old models (trying to get rid of all old stock with funny promos).
If you know places where I can go and see The new Panny Z800U let me know.
Because I feel like this is my Tv already but I've never saw it working, so funny! .
And it seams that this has become the new favorite TV for most knowledgeable people at least in USA.
Now I'm 70% sure that I'll buy the Panny Z800U.
I know the technology is growing and I've seen the new Tv's with 200hz, or the
3D LCD for samsung (I watched in youtube)
but the point is that i dont want to regret at allafter I buy my panny Z800U.
I think the stores want their stores bright and TV comparisons take a back seat to having the store bright for security cameras, etc. I think they SHOULD have dimmer lights in the TV section and the BB stores with Magnolia sections usually do have dimmer lights in there to compare them.

The pz800 series is a great TV from what I have seen and read myself. I opted to save the money and get the pz80u myself because I got it for $1,000.00 off (in 5/2008) with a price match luckily so the price difference was too large for me to justify the extra cost of the pz800u back then.

I would look in your local Yellowpages/Superpages book for a HI Fi store in your area and check some TVs out there where the lighting is more like what a home has. I would avoid buying ANY HDTV without looking at it yourself with your eyes, but the pz800u is one that comes close to recommending sight unseen though. Yeah it is that good for the money IMO, but find a store that has it to see for yourself.

Hope this helps!
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All Klipsch RC-25(ctr),(2)SS1(surr),(2)SS1(rearSurr)
Toshiba (2)HD-A20,PS3,BD35
For SACD/DVD-A Samsung HD-841
Panny 50pz80u plasma
SETTINGS
RCA HD50LPW162 50"DLP w/HD2+
SA 3250HD
47" LCD+Yamaha5790+HD-A1(bedroom)
Harmony 680 + (2) 670s (amazing remote/support)
Game room with Onkyo receiver & B&W Speakers
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