720p or 1080p?

Soldato
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Hi all.

I am after a new TV and here is basically what the TV will be used for, etc.

Viewing distance will be around 10ft
Budget up to around £850
It will be used for SKY TV and movies (including blueray) 95% of the time, with a little PS3 gaming.

I have pretty much decided on either the 42" TH-42PX80B or TH-42PZ80B, but I can't decide if I should go for the 1080p or 720p

I keep hearing different things. Some people say I will not notice any difference at all at my viewing distance, others says 1080p will definitely look better when watching HD and that 1080p will be more future proof.

All I know is that I want this TV to last as long as possible. I don't want to have to upgrade in another 2 years or so because I didn't buy a "full HD" TV. I know either 720p or 1080p should look excellent and it's not all down to the resolution, etc. but I just want to know if buying a 1080p now, will save me having to upgrade earlier in the future...

I did go into a shop and had a look, but all the TV's were setup really badly, they looked terrible... and I couldn't really see any plasma, so didn't get to see the TV's that I am interested in.

I will try another shop soon and see if I can see any difference, but wanted your opinion first...

Cheers.
 
Soldato
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Having has a 720p TV for a couple of years now, I'd certainly get a 1080p next and not another 720p - At 42" you'd definately notice the difference in the higher res.

It's the 32/37" TVs that have 1080p that are a little questionable.
 
Associate
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Here's a nice little chart showing different sizes, viewing distances and when the benefits of 720p/1080p should be noticeable.

 
Soldato
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Whether I got a 720p or a 1080p would depend upon which one I prefered to look at, and if there was no difference, I'd take the cheaper one.

I'd say that my 720p does a better job on SD material than any other flat panel TV currently available. I'd also say that it looks better at HD than any other flat panel apart from the more expensive models in the same line. That is to say, it produces better SD and HD images than the vast majority of 1080p panels out there .

Some people say that you can see the difference between 720p and 1080p as distance X and some say you can't but it's not as simple as that; the quality of image you see is a function of a number of fascets and the easiest way to appraise them all together is to look at the image and see if you like it, ignoring all the numbers and marketing spin.

As for 1080p being 'future proof', the future is already here; TV is broadcast in 1080i and there is no where near enough bandwidth to make it 1080p unless the transmission quality is lowered so much that it will look blocky and awful regardless of how many pixels you have. Bluray has just arrived and it's not going to be replaces soon, so i'm not sure how future proof you need to be.
 
Associate
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As others have said, it's usually down to the viewing distance. I have the 37PX70 and that's fine for me!

I find plasma makes SD stuff look better than LCD does after scaling but that's personal opinion as is everything else really :)
 
Soldato
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Thanks for the replies.

The TV is going to be used in the lounge and I think at around 10ft viewing distance a 42" should be pretty nice. However the rest of the family think this is far too big, and want a 37" max... They are trying to compare it with the old 27" CRT we have at the moment... :rolleyes:

My brother wants a 37" LCD TV and he is certain we need 1080p, so I just need to try and persuade him that it isn't needed and the money saved can go on something else, like a nice TV cabinet which will be needed... I will also need to try and persuade him that a plasma TV will probably be better for our usage.

Do you think a 42" will be OK for around a 10ft viewing distance? I asked on other forums and they said it should be about perfect...

I will try and find a shop where I can compare the two and make a final decision before I go ahead and buy. Unless there is quite a significant difference between the two I doubt I will be going for the 1080p.
 
Soldato
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it is about perfect, trust them. i sit 7ft from a 40" and tbh....i could have gone for a 46". dont worry about it being too big, you soon get used to the size. lcds and plasma's are physically far less imposing than crt's anyway:)
 
Man of Honour
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At 10ft 720p is absolutely fine for HD viewing - see the chart posted above. It's not humanely possible to tell the difference before you get to 8ft at the very least.

Parents have a 42" 720p Kuro and it's absolutely stunning :)
 
Soldato
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At 10ft 720p is absolutely fine for HD viewing - see the chart posted above. It's not humanely possible to tell the difference before you get to 8ft at the very least.

Parents have a 42" 720p Kuro and it's absolutely stunning :)

It's the same lot of us always in here recommending tvs and giving out our knowledge, we should get together and make a sticky.

Get the PX80 and save the money. Just hink, if you sat within 6ft of your tv, would the extra few hundred really be worth it for a slightly sharper picture ?

Get the PX80 and start enjoying your tv. I have a 42 kuro and view from 12ft normally, and game from about 8, perfect but a 50 might have been a little better. Not £1000 better when I was purchasing months ago.

The plasma will look better over time, and after tweaking will look even better.
 

Hxc

Hxc

Soldato
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To be honest, that chart gets flashed around here too much for my liking.

It really depends on the material you are viewing as to whether 720p vs 1080p makes a difference. If you are running a PC monitor through it, you'll see the difference at pretty much any distance, but a lot of TV and there will be no noticable change. I'd much rather use my eyes to test the theory than go by a chart...
 

Hxc

Hxc

Soldato
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I'd also add that games allow you to tell the difference fairly easily, at least in my opinion.
 
Soldato
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people have their own opinions on it all. beansprout said its not humanly possible to see the difference further than 8ft - that chart that some people religiously follow doesnt say that at all, and his point of view conflicts with my own experience, even though im sitting too far away from my tv according to that chart.

its not always black and white.
 
Man of Honour
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people have their own opinions on it all. beansprout said its not humanly possible to see the difference further than 8ft - that chart that some people religiously follow doesnt say that at all, and his point of view conflicts with my own experience, even though im sitting too far away from my tv according to that chart.

its not always black and white.
Too tired to do the maths now but I'm sure there can't be much in it on average. I'm sure the chart is roughly in-line with what I said, I did just take a quick look and do a bit of guessing though - my main point was that 10ft is probably a bit far away to worry about £200 worth of 1080p on a 42" plasma.

I guess I can't really talk because I'll be getting a 1080p plasma and viewing from 8 - 10ft but hey :D
 
Permabanned
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It's the 32/37" TVs that have 1080p that are a little questionable.

Nope, trust me you will tell the difference from say 5 odd feet back, or even closer if you intend on using either as a PC monitor.

If you're say 5 feet away from a 32" (that runs 1080P) and use a Playstation 3 in 720P on the XMB, then change it to 1080P you should see a clear difference, I do on my 37", I see no reason why it'll be any different on a 32", despite the smaller screen.

However, I watched Superbad in 720P (A Blu-Ray rip) and it looked amazing, I couldn't believe it was 720 because it looked so much better than many 1080P films I've watched.
 
Soldato
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there's also the theory that you're much better off with a high quality 720p set than a low end 1080p one.

i subscribe to this theory myself, 720p/1080i material is phenomenal on my 56" set ....friends who paid alot more than i did don't get as good a picture in HD.
 
Soldato
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It looks like I will need to go for the 37" instead. I just checked and it looks like a 42" will be too large for my lounge because of the fireplace, which would slightly block the view from one of the chairs. :(
The 42" does look bigger than I expected.

37" looks just about perfect, so I will probably go for the TH-37PX80B.

I will try to go into a shop and compare them in about 2 weeks when I get back from holiday and I will tell you what I think. :)
I should be able to get the 37" for just under £600 inc a 5 year warranty, leaving some cash left over to buy a TV cabinet and some towards a better sound system.
 
Soldato
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It looks like I will need to go for the 37" instead. I just checked and it looks like a 42" will be too large for my lounge because of the fireplace, which would slightly block the view from one of the chairs. :(
The 42" does look bigger than I expected.

37" looks just about perfect, so I will probably go for the TH-37PX80B.

I will try to go into a shop and compare them in about 2 weeks when I get back from holiday and I will tell you what I think. :)
I should be able to get the 37" for just under £600 inc a 5 year warranty, leaving some cash left over to buy a TV cabinet and some towards a better sound system.

Good choice, or just demolish the fireplace and make the tv a focal point, Il be doing that in my first house as fireplaces are useless eyesores that take up valuable space :D

Don;t forget when comparing to get some settings for the sets you're looking at off the relevant owners threads at www.avforums.com. Get the remote from the guy/gal in store and fiddle around, as tvs in shops are setup very very badly with contrast, brightness, and all other crap turned right up.
 
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