"Beats Every TV Out There For the Price!"5.0 starson by M-Hunter
Pros: + Picture quality - Absolutely stunning
+ Black levels - Any deeper of a black and it would look fake
+ Internet apps/connectivity/networking
Cons: - Only con I can think of is that the 60" model is almost $600 more
Summary: As with most guys buying a new expensive electronic toy I did weeks worth of research on TV's. My previous TV was a 2007 Samsung plasma (720p) and I really loved it for the time that I had it but I was intrigued by the new LED line of TV's. Before doing research I thought that this was the future and that plasmas were going to be phased out but I soon found out this is not the case. In fact LED TV's are no more than LCD TV's with LED backlighting while true LED's (OLED) being thousands of dollars for 42" models and scarce availability.
Regardless I went out and bought what I felt was a bargain, a 60" Sharp Aquos Quattron 60LE832U from BJ's for $1,799. It was thin, had wireless connectivity built in, 60", and cheap for what you got. The picture was good but I soon noticed a lot of artifacts in the picture. The color from the factory was overly bright and oversaturated. I am usually one who likes a slightly less realistic picture in favor of slightly more saturated and vivid images too but this was over the top. No matter what I could not get the picture quality right and there were definitely motion issues even with the claimed 240Hz aquamotion.
Turns out it isn't truly 240Hz and it suffers from the same motion issues that all LCD's are plagued with. Frustrated I looked over to the plasma side but was apprehensive because in the store plasmas always look horrible. Their pictures are dull and over-brightened to where the blacks look gray and they are always next to shiny LED/LCD's that look so good. I had enough in my account to grab a second TV thankfully to see what it looked like next to the Sharp and figured I would take back the one that looked worse. In this case I was losing 5" in picture and was worried that the ambient light in my living room would drown out the plasma picture because this had always been a problem with plasma.
The second I hooked up this TV I was blown away! The color even out of the box was breathtaking and the blacks were spot on. There was a golf tournament on and I felt like I was there looking through a window. The Sharp had good resolution but it felt fake since the picture was so bright (even when turned down) and the motion unrealistic. I immediately packed up the Sharp and took it back. I am telling you if you are thinking of LED/LCD don't do it, plasma is where it's at and you cannot beat the picture on this TV for the price, it is unbelievable!!! LED/LCD just hasn't been perfected enough which is why there are so many different types such as edge-lit, full array, etc.
Now on to the actual review:
1) Picture quality - Absolutely stunning, the picture is as realistic as it comes with good saturation and the brightness is perfect. I have put this TV next to everything out there include the GT30 and VT30 and there is absolutely no different from what my eyes can see. All you get is THX mode and 1 HDMI and USB port on the other models and anyone who tells you the PQ is better on those is just being overly critical and properly a complete calibration nut because I just can't see it nor can most people.
2) Black levels - Any deeper of a black and it would look fake, even when the brightness is turned up they stay completely black, it isn't not a stupid balancing act like it is with LED/LCD where you have to tradeoff black levels for other things like brightness.
3) Internet apps/connectivity/networking - Comes with a wireless dongle to allow connection to your network and it is much more useful than I thought. DLNA works 1000x better than the Sharp which was clunky, slow, and didn't play all media types. The ST30 even previews your video files on your network as you are scrolling through them, it is a very cool feature and is very responsive. The apps are great too with pretty much everything you would be looking for such as Pandora and Youtube.
4) Price - As I mentioned before you cannot beat this PQ for the price. $1499 at most places and it can even be found a tad cheaper. The Vizio 4SV 55" model is almost $2000 and is large, ugly, and has a myriad of problems such as randomly turning off. This is a documented problem that you can search for and Vizio is apprehensive to fix it for anyone.
5) 3D - I'll admit I wasn't really big on this and the Sharp I bought didn't even have it because I could care less about it but this one did (and was cheaper, go figure). I am really glad now that it does have it as the 3D is simply breathtaking and there is little to no crosstalk at all! All the other makers (except maybe Sony) had a lot of crosstalk, especially Samsung. The Sony I viewed had great 3D but it was also running on a demo in the store hooked to a bluray which is a bit deceiving compared to watching it on DirecTV or something. Also be aware that Vizio TV's are not listed (right now) as a supported 3DTV with DirecTV!
1) Only con I can think of is that the 60" model is almost $600 more, which is a bit ridiculous. I was hoping it was more like $300 more as I probably would have jumped on it if so.
2) Nothing else, this TV absolutely rocks!
If you are on the fence with which TV to get or you are debating plasma vs. LED/LCD please take this review seriously and try the plasma, I am almost going to guarantee that for this price that you are going to like it more. The new Samsung 55" LED/LCD is $2650, while this amazing 2011 plasma is $1499, no need to spend $1200 more, and before you will buy the TC-P55ST30 I suggest you have to check for best deal at --> cheap-hdtv-suggestion.blogspot.com/2011/11/panasonic-viera-tc-p55st30.html