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89 posts

Master Geek

#518811 8-Sep-2011 22:57
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I work in an electronic repair shop. While I don't fix TVs, I see lots in for repair. The opinion of all of us is, avoid a plasma if you can. They are an overly complicated box of heat generating trouble, hate the glass reflection, and image burn still something to be concerned about (kids leave menu of DVD disc on overnight, can cause troubles)
Some of the latest Samsung Led sets are amazing .

1125 posts

Uber Geek

  #519096 9-Sep-2011 18:11
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ShortyNZ: Thanks bfginger. We do have a Magic TV Myfreeview box already, so I will get my husband to have a look and see what is plugged where.

If you are watching with the MagicTV plugged in via the supplied RCA cables then you are probably either watching SD on composite or HD on YPBPR.

To make sure you're getting it in HD, first set the output to 1080i50 in the MagicTV preferences. The MagicTV comes with two sets of RCA cables, one with three cables and the other with two. The tripple cable can be used for composite plus R/L audio, or for YPBPR video. The second twin cable is for audio to go alongside YPBPR video.

Look on the back of your MagicTV and CRT and it should have YPBPR marked next to the correct outputs and inputs. If the TV is the same as the manual then the two rightmost columns of five inputs are for YPBPR and L/R audio.


576 posts

Ultimate Geek

  #519118 9-Sep-2011 19:31
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Most receiver equipment in NZ like MySkyHDi won't do HD over anything but HDMI.

MySkyHDi will do hd over component on all channels but freeviewHD ones (funny as they are free in hd anyway) and i think the hd movie channels ( but dont have them so cant say for sure)

963 posts

Ultimate Geek

  #519207 10-Sep-2011 09:27
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Is magictv different?

My understanding is that to be "freeview certified" they can only pass hd via the hdmi cable, not over component

8 posts

Wannabe Geek

  #521498 15-Sep-2011 14:57
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You're getting some (mostly) good advice in here. Buy the one that makes people look like people.  Unless of course, you don't like reality (nothing wrong with that, just make sure you know who you are). And the one that does the least bad job of displaying lots of stuff moving quickly at the same time. In the price bracket you're looking at, they all have enough "clarity". Maybe some have too much...

A few other observations:
- the Sony of today is not the Sony that made your current TV.
- I waited for many more years than you while looking to replace my Sony CRT. Not out of indecision, but because I couldn't find anything that looked as good. This year I took the plunge, it's a Panny plasma. GT30. Not perfect, but the pros finally outweigh the cons for me.
- I've had a couple of different models at home (ST and GT). Bad news...they do get better as you pay more.
- It doesn't matter what the salesman thinks.
- You'll get 20% off sticker price somewhere or other if you ask nicely and show you are genuinely ready to buy. Maybe a bit more. Don't feel the need to rush in just because "sale ends tomorrow".
- Don't demo on Bluray, unless that's mostly what you're planning on watching (unlikely). They'll all look fantastic. How do they deal with a standard DVD? TV news? Top Gear? Sunday Theatre?
- @ 4.5m, you're going to want that 55". When people say "they shrink after 3 days" they're not joking. At that size, better make sure it displays SD content well.

Good luck.

1125 posts

Uber Geek

  #521534 15-Sep-2011 15:48
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The 2012 models will probably be available by the middle of next year so you could wait for them if you're in no hurry.

Don't junk the HR36 if you don't plan on keeping it as a second television. It will sell if you put it on Trademe with a 10-day auction with the model name in the title and at a reasonable reserve.

MySkyHDi will do hd over component on all channels but freeviewHD ones (funny as they are free in hd anyway) and i think the hd movie channels ( but dont have them so cant say for sure)

Excluding Sky Sports, those are the the HD channels on Sky. Sadly TV1/2/3 aren't available in HD for the 13% of the population outside of the Freeview|HD broadcast area.

150 posts

Master Geek

  #521646 15-Sep-2011 19:48
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Plasmas get a bad rap from a lot of circles but generally you'll find people who do some research and buy a good quality plasma will be extremely happy with it. In my opinion (and I did a lot of research before buying my set) a high-end plasma is still the best you can get in the consumer scene.

One of the major problems with plasma as a whole is the fact they there are many many no-name brands or very low end sets. Problem is people buy these then when they're average they blame "plasma", not the fact they have a $700 42" TV.

I'm not saying they're completely rubbish but you need to expect what you pay for.


3829 posts

Uber Geek

  #521691 15-Sep-2011 21:29
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There's not that many brands in NZ are there?
Panasonic, LG, Samsung... who else makes plasmas?
The only company to offer full HD 42" models is Panasonic. They're also the only company to still make a 46" version... I think most of the other manufacturers are moving to LED because...
They can cram more panels into shipping containers (upright or flat) in skinny boxes.
Or in the case of Sony, they simply can't afford a plasma factory - after all, they've sold a host of their TV plants in recent times. I wouldn't be too surprised to see them move out of the TV business in a couple of years actually...

44 posts


  #521989 16-Sep-2011 14:50
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Many thanks for all the input, which has been really helpful. I'm glad to see the ol' Sony 36" CRT still has a good rep - I always feel vaguely embarrassed when people comment on the fact we haven't got a flat-screen. That sucker is seriously heavy though ;) And it did suffer the 3-day shrink (replaced a 27").

If we wanted to look at the higher-end Pana plasmas, what are the options? I don't think they have been in the shops we've already been to (i.e. most of them! ha!) and from comments here, it seems like maybe they aren't generally carried (i.e. for on display)?

Thanks again

8 posts

Wannabe Geek

  #522005 16-Sep-2011 15:09
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It's pretty simple, in increasing order: ST30, GT30, VT30. I haven't been in the shops for a while, but ST and GT should be widely available, VT I haven't seen in the flesh but surely they are out there by now.
A quick look here will get you up to speed. 

Yes they are all "3D", but there are no top end 2D only Panny plasmas in NZ this year (in the consumer range anyway). Much of the tech that makes them good for 3D makes them good for 2D too. ST and GT come without glasses, so you can just forget they do 3D if it doesn't interest you. The glasses are evolving too, so buying a TV now and later on deciding to get glasses would likely leave you in a better position anyway.

Anything ending in 20 or 25 is a 2010 model, some will say they are still worth considering, personally I'd not go there. On balance things do advance year on year.

Those people commenting on your current TV just don't understand - philistines :-) You'll show them who's boss in the end.

3829 posts

Uber Geek

  #522143 16-Sep-2011 20:45
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You should see the upper end Panasonic's in all Harvey Norman stores, the bigger Noel Leeming stores (they all seem to have the 65VT30 at the moment - normally right up front where the sunlight from outside makes it look like a mirror) and Smiths City (at least in the S.I.). It's a little rarer to see them in the 100% franchise stores, Dick Smith etc though.

1125 posts

Uber Geek

  #522451 17-Sep-2011 20:06
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There is no VT30 available at 55" in NZ, only 42", 50" and 65". The 65" VT30 is as big as it is expensive at $6500. The 50" VT30 and 55" GT30 are both three and a half thousand but they're both available periodically for $3100 on sale. I'd take the better model over the larger one if it was me but you aren't sitting very close to the TV.

Plasmas wear-in for the first month of use or so, so during that time it's supposedly a good idea to not view 4:3 or static material excessively and to tone down the picture settings to more natural levels. Televisions usually have terrible defaults.

I'm glad to see the ol' Sony 36" CRT still has a good rep - I always feel vaguely embarrassed when people comment on the fact we haven't got a flat-screen.

That's ironic as your TV really is a flat-screen. People who tie their social worth to things like their car and television won't understand why you would still have a TV that they would see as being beneath you, and others will just think all CRTs are no good and any LCD is far better. By the end of the decade when people are buying wall-sized televisions they'll look down at a P65VT30 too. A decade ago plasma televisions were selling for at least $15,000.

I just remembered that the Magic TV has a video setting that lets you compensate for overscan on your CRT. It is set per-channel.

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