"Value will outweigh the picture compromises for most"3.5 starson by MikeHudsonATL
Pros: Value - $1300-$1400 with two glasses after negotiating at local big box.
Good picture overall: Bright for a plasma, colors are saturated, good contrast to give it some "pop".
Attractively thin bezel design.
Good 3D performance from 3D sources.
Cons: Glare. This TV makes no attempt to reduce reflections.
Some graininess, motion judder, color inaccuracy, banding, black level
2D-3D practically useless.
Summary: (This review is my initial impressions. I have not performed an expert calibration yet. Will update posting after calibration)Reading the most recent AVSForums, this TV will not be good as last year's LG PK550 in terms of black levels. In fact, the initial impressions of expert calibrators are that the MLL (black levels) will be a major disappointment; perhaps LG sacrificed 2D picture to provide 3D functionality and other features in a low cost set.
Picture: 3 stars
Design: 4 stars
Features: 5 stars
Value: 5 stars
Overall: 3.5 stars - very good
I wouldn't call myself a videophile but I do tend to have a critical eye for a TV's picture. I gave this TV 3 stars in picture quality and while that means bad for some, I actually mean good. I'm a value shopper and this TV's performance for the price is hard to beat.
This 60" LG plasma is an exceptional value. While the picture quality will not be as good as the high end 3D plasmas such as the Panny VT series or the Sammy C7000, 8000 series, you cannot beat the price. I picked up this TV at a local big box store (not the people in blue) for $175 less than best online price with two glasses included after some negotiation. That's over $500 less than the next closest, 58" C7000 without glasses. Be sure to get the new 250 series glasses, as the old series will not work.
Price and LG's reputation for their plasmas (last year's PK550 rated very high) allowed me to take a leap on this unit. I'm a cautious shopper and research most of my purchases but with TV being so new, there were no expert reviews at the time of my purchase. I'm not disappointed. Most viewers will be happy with the picture quality.
I replaced a Samsung PN50B550 with this in my living room. The B550 is a great TV that I used for over two years so I'll be doing most of my comparisons of the 60PZ550 to this TV.
Picture quality is very good but not without faults:
Colors are vibrant and contrast is good enough to give it that "pop". This TV's light output is greater than that of the B550 and presents a nice, bright picture. Because the bright image, the 60PZ550 looks to have a more vivid color presentation. SD quality is better overall. The SD upconversion seemed to show more detail and less ghosting than the B550.
Drawbacks: HD seems grainier than the B550. The sheer size of the screen seems to show more pixelating and graininess. From 10+ feet it's not noticeable, def see the difference close up. Panning is slightly more jittery. Black level, while pretty good, expected better. The 7-step picture wizard does a great job of getting the picture better than factory setting but I believe an expert calibration will give it a better picture and aid in getting a better black level. My current setting black level is on par with the B550 but LG's 550 series TV supposedly has better black levels (last year's LG PK550 series had better blacks than the PK750 and even the higher up 950 series. See AVS forums for more info). It will not beat Panny's VT in black level.
Glare. Yes, there is glare on this plasma. Panasonics G and V series does a great job, this LG does not. Even the two year old Sammy B550 did a better job. The glare reduction on the B550 dulls reflection to a dark red color, the LG makes almost no attempt of reducing glare, however, I don't think it's anymore distracting. Even dulled red reflection is just as distracting. This TV, along with most plasmas, will need to be in a light controlled environment. My living room has side windows with blinds, no direct light coming from behind the viewer which works out well but if you have windows on the opposite wall of where you'd be placing your TV, I do not recommend...at all.
3D works with 3D sources, almost as well as the Panny VT that was set up at the store showing Avatar but with just a hint more ghosting. 2D-3D conversion is useless like most TVs with that functionality. That just messes with your eyes.
Sound is average. Sounds like most flat panel TVs with rear projecting speakers. My unit is connected to a 5.1 HTIB so I do not use the TV speakers.
Connectivity is good with 4 HDMI inputs.
Haven't used the Netcast. Again, the HTIB provides all the online resources needed so no need to purchase the wifi adapter for this TV.
In the end, the casual viewer will be very happy with this TV. Videophiles will notice the difference between this TV and the high end models. Value shoppers like myself hits a jackpot for the price-performance balance, that all important "bang for the buck".
Updated on May 17, 2011
Updated on Jun 13, 2011After much debate, I returned this TV as my return period was about to expire. Ponied out the extra cash for a high end Samsung. Unfortunately, the Samsung is notably improved... at twice the price. I would have been perfectly satisfied if the PZ's 2D performance was on par with last year's PK550. It was not.