Always striving to offer the best, fastest, and most complete Blu-ray coverage
anywhere, Blu-ray.com is once again on the cutting edge of the high definition
Blu-ray revolution with this basic overview and review of Panasonic's brand-new 3D hardware that's just now begun to trickle into Best Buy stores over
the past weeks. Both the stunning TC-P50VT20 50" 3D-enabled Viera plasma
television and its counterpart, the Panasonic DMP-BDT300 3D Blu-ray player,
yield an incredible home theater experience practically straight out of the box,
delivering a nearly seamless 3D presentation and one of the best 2D Blu-ray
picture qualities available on the market today.
The state of 3D Blu-ray today
Beginning with the bad first, it's essential to point out that as of today, there
are no Full HD 3D Blu-ray discs for sale on the market. Monsters vs.
Aliens is available as part of a bundle with Samsung's 3D packages, but
buyers of Panasonic's offerings will only be able to enjoy an included
promotional test disc that offers a sampling of high quality 3D imagery
(packaged inside the box with the BDT300). It remains unclear as to exactly
which titles -- and when -- will be available for off-the-shelf sale. Additionally,
the Panasonic 3D TV is currently only offered in a 50" model, with larger
54", 58", and 65" variations scheduled for release at a later date.
Fortunately, everything else about this equipment and the 3D technology --
based off of less than a week with it in-home and only sampled in 3D with the
included promotional disc -- proves an exceptionally pleasurable experience.
The 67-pound (with attached pedestal) 50" plasma boasts a wide range of
external connection options and internal picture adjustment settings to
achieve a top-flight home theater viewing experience. Boasting a collection of
three HDMI, two component, one RCA, one RF (coaxial), and one PC inputs and a single
digital audio out jack on the rear of the set; and two USB ports, one each
HDMI and RCA inputs, and an SD-card slot on the set's left edge (that also
houses channel and volume controls, menu selection buttons, as well as a
power on-off button), there are no shortage of inputs and additional goodies to
enhance the connectivity and functionality of the television. Within the set's
menu, there are six primary options, most of which include a slew of
additional user-adjustable tweaks. The meat-and-potatoes of the options, the
picture quality adjustment selections, include four basic pre-set picture modes
-- "Vivid," "Standard," "THX" (relabeled "Cinema" in 3D mode), and "Game," --
with a fifth option labeled "Custom" meant for users to input their own set of
adjustments (though each label is user-adjustable to some degree) for generalized parameters such as contrast, brightness, color, tint, and sharpness, as well as
more advanced options such as color temperature, video noise reduction, and
black level. There are also several options through which to calibrate the set's 3D
settings, most of which revolve around ensuring the glasses work with the television. This plasma also includes Panasonic's "VieraCast" network
connectivity option which will work wirelessly with a currently-unreleased USB
dongle and the player's built-in Wi-Fi connectivity. The set also comes with a functional but not exceptional remote
control; the buttons are suitably large, the unit is fairly lightweight, and most
buttons briefly illuminate with a red light by the press of the "light" button
located directly under the power button.
The TC-P50VT20's rear connections
The TC-P50VT20's side connections and buttons
Anyone familiar with Panasonic's previous line of Blu-ray players will
immediately find themselves in a comfort zone with the BDT300. Sporting the
generalized Panasonic Blu-ray remote control, a pull-open front tray on the
player, an easy-to-read display, a host of connection options on the back, and a
familiar setup menu, the player is easy to work and get going within minutes
of taking it out of the box. Externally, this 3D Blu-ray player features a pair of HDMI
outputs (more on that below in the "Connections" paragraph), component and
RCA outputs, coaxial and optical audio outputs, analog audio outputs for 7.1-
channel surround sound, an ethernet port, and a USB port for use with the
included wireless USB LAN adaptor. Like the television, the BDT300 comes
equipped with Panasonic's "VieraCast" functionality. Note that the player is
bundled only with a fairly useless set of RCA cables (no "High Speed" HDMI cable is
included) and no 3D glasses. The player does include, however, the Panasonic
Full HD 3D sample Blu-ray disc (see "3D Testing" below).
The BDT300's dual HDMI outputs
The BDT300's additional A/V outputs
Another potential stumbling block. Panasonic warns users several times not
wear the included 3D glasses as sunglasses, but considering how unstylish and
bulky these things are, it's hard to imagine anyone mistakingly wearing them
to opening day at PNC Park. The glasses are what they are and what they
need to be; stylish no but functional yes, the included eyewear (one pair with
the 3D TV, nothing with the 3D Blu-ray player, and spare glasses going for
about $150 each) gets the job done but proves a bit unwieldy and slightly
uncomfortable due in large part to their heft after extended viewing. Each pair
of glasses (both the included pair with the 3D TV and separately-purchased
units) come with a hard plastic storage case, two attachable/detachable
nosepiece options, and an optional head strap for 3D viewers that find the glasses
falling from their face. The 3D effect works in both a lighted and darkened
room, but considering that the glasses don't encompass one's entire peripheral
vision, a darkened room is preferable so one need not to worry about other
lighted information around the corners. The glasses are powered by a coin-shaped lithium battery in the eyewear frame, found opposite the power button
that must be held down for about a second to turn the glasses on and off.
Perhaps someday 3D viewing will be possible without the need for eyewear,
but there's no doubt that 3D glasses will, over time, become smaller, lighter,
sleeker, and more comfortable. Maybe one day they'll even double as
sunglasses, but until then, here's hoping that future, lighter models will be compatible
with older 3D TV sets.
Here's another potential deal-breaker, but one that need not worry the 3D customer; Full HD 3D is sometimes said to require "HDMI 1.4" connectivity. However, new HDMI standards dictate that any HDMI cable labeled as "High Speed" will work to provide 3D content. Does that still mean that buyers interested in upgrading to 3D Blu-ray need
to shell out several hundred more dollars on a new receiver? With Panasonic's
solution, the answer is fortunately "no." While owners will need to make sure they're connecting a "High Speed" HDMI cable for use between the 3D Blu-ray player and the 3D HDTV, the BDT300 actually houses a pair of HDMI outputs. The second --
labeled HDMI (SUB) -- when set to "V.OFF" in the player's "HDMI Connection"
submenu will output only audio through to the receiver and allow for FullHD
3D video to be sent via the HDMI "High Speed" cable connected between the player and
the television, all without the costly upgrade to a new "3D" receiver.
The 3D HDTV and the 3D Blu-ray player look good on paper (and in person), but how do
they fare when the lights go down and the movie starts up? No doubt many
have, by now, sampled what 3D is all about on the Best Buy showroom floor,
and while a decent enough presentation, there's nothing quite like viewing in a
more controlled environment, taking the time to learn the controls, tweak the
components, and enjoy the 3D demo disc and a larger sampling of 2D Blu-ray
materials at one's own leisure. The included 3D sample disc features four
primary "High Quality Picture Contents" presented in 1080p Full HD 3D
-- Funny Furry Friends; Rome, The Eternal City; Grand Canyon; and the
Astro Boy trailer -- and seven additional "Fun Contents" clips: Drag
Racing, Motocross, Canadian Nature, Mexico City, Coral Wonderland, Mexico's
Mariachi, and Game, the last being a very basic and very short
demonstration of a 3D racing game with crude graphics but a spectacular
dimensional feel. Each clip is painfully short, lasting between about 90 seconds
and three minutes in length.
Each clip is astounding in its own right; all demonstrate exceptionally good
coloring with vibrant hues galore in Rome and breathtakingly natural
shades of green and gray in Canadian Nature. Fine detail in rock
faces, clothing, puppy fur, dirt paths, and vegetation all rival some of the best
imagery yet seen on Blu-ray. The image can get just a touch soft around the
edges, however. As to the sense of depth created by the 3D effect, it is, in a
word, "extraordinary." While there's some sense of objects "jumping out of
the screen" in every video segment, the true strength of the 3D effect lies not
in gimmicky "poke the audience" routines but rather in the awe-inspiring
sense of depth the images achieve. It's easy to see and get a realistic feel for
distance between objects, and it often seems as if there's a good amount of
space between the front of the television screen and a cluster of trees, for
example. It's like looking out a window in Canadian Nature or
standing in front of several circus performers in another segment.
Grand Canyon offers perhaps the best moment in the set; water
seems to splash straight onto the viewer, resulting in residual droplets of water
that seem to be dripping off the lenses of the 3D glasses. Between all the
segments, viewers will see a bit of everything, save for actual Full HD 3D live-action movie content. The included Astro Boy trailer is subjectively
the least impressive clip; that's not to say that it isn't a wonderful 3D
experience in its own right or that actual films such as Ice Age or
Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs or even Astro Boy won't
look great in 3D, it just lacks quite the same amount of dimension seen in the
Most importantly, and unlike older "anaglyph" 3D images (the ones that
require the flimsy red and cyan glasses), there's only a trace of
"ghosting" to be found here. It's practically nonexistent, but there
nevertheless for the eagle-eyed viewer that may pick up on a slight shadow
around the edge of an object. Nevertheless, the effect is virtually seamless in
every sample, and will likely only get better as the technology is refined in the
coming years. There's also at least one instance of transparency in Grand
Canyon where a man's leg may be seen while he's walking behind a tree,
but again, it's easily the exception rather than the rule.
Most early adopters of 3D technology are going to have to survive on 2D Blu-ray content until the studios begin releasing 3D titles on a regular basis, and
fortunately, the potent Panasonic 3D-equipped duo produces incredible visuals,
reinforcing the best picture quality and showcasing the warts on some of the
lesser transfers. Several 2D titles were tested; the sampling of discs included
high-quality Blu-ray film transfers (Star Trek, An Education, Armored), lesser-quality Blu-ray releases (The Arrival, "Breaking Bad: Season One"), hand-drawn style animation (The Princess and the Frog), a computer-animated title (Cars), a black-and-white film (Dr. Strangelove), and a particularly grainy film
(Predator). The 3D HDTV handled all the 2D Blu-ray material thrown at it
superbly; while it only reinforced the plastic texture of The Arrival, it
brought out the finest detail in Armored, delivered on the wonderfully
intricate blacks in Star Trek, and displayed Predator's heavy
grain structure nicely. Colors are exceptionally rendered across the board,
whether the steely gray and dark look of Armored, the blue-gray tone
of An Education, or the bright shades that practically pop off the
screen in Cars.
Both currently exclusive to Best Buy, the TC-P50VT20 (retail $2499) and the
DMP-BDT300 (retail $399) make for a potent combination for home Blu-ray
viewing, and while 3D content isn't yet readily available (or available at all at
the moment), those in the market for a new television and player would be
wise to consider these future-proof models from Panasonic. They deliver a
practically seamless Full HD 3D Blu-ray experience (though again with the
Panasonic test disc as the only frame of reference) and exceptional 2D Blu-ray picture quality. It's difficult to envision a future where 3D hasn't caught on for
home viewing. Panasonic definitely has a leg up on the competition with the
quality of their Viera Plasma and the wonderful BDT300, and the technology is
just too good -- even in this very first wave of products -- not to take
advantage of. It's still a 2D world, but 3D has a place in it, and if the included
sample disc is any indication, even travelogue and nature-oriented discs may
become a big hit with 3D; they look absolutely phenomenal and one can only
imagine a trip to the Great Wall of China, the Pyramids of Egypt, or the
Glaciers of Alaska in Full HD 3D.
I saw this at Best Buy over the weekend and was reasonably impressed. I had two things to mention however. Firstly, Best Buy sets the picture up so you are above the television looking down on it, which isn't ideal and doesn't work very well, you should be at or below the center of the screen. Secondly, I don't like the silver bezel. I've been told that the v25 will have a black bezel, but the "blue shirt" wasn't entirely sure about that.
I watch How to Train Your Dragon immediately after this and found the V20's image to be more dynamic that the cinema experience, hopefully that holds true with identical material.
I would like to add (As A Best Buy/Magnolia Employee) that the unit is only available
in 235 stores until June. In order to carry the TV, the store has to be a "revenue band 10"
or higher within the company. This means that the store has to be a VERY profitable store.
In addition the store must have a Magnolia department in it.
Not every Magnolia store will carry the Panasonic.
However, on June 5th this exclusivity will end, and the TV will be available at all stores. Each Magnolia store was originally sent 1 unit for display, and was allowed to sell about 2-3 TV's at each location. Most stores sold out in the first week, but some didn't, and on this one particular model stores are not allowed to transfer to other stores because of low inventory. This means that you will have to be able to take the TV home with you unless the store is VERY close to you. Delivery will be out of the question for most customers.
As long as the cable can pass 10.2 gbps or more, you can use it for the 3D feed on the Panasonic.
In fact, the cord that Panasonic sent along with the instruction packet labled "for Magnolia Home Theater 3-D Display" is manufactured by Panasonic and was clearly labled HDMI 1.3, 10.2 gbps on the front of the packaging. The red and black cord featured in the photos above is an AudioQuest cable that is capable of passing more than 10.2. However, we tried several cords in the store...even the cheapest "Dynex" cord from Best Buy. As long as it is 10.2gbps or above and you are using the 2 HDMI outputs at the same time (1 for audio, 1 for video) it still provides the full 1080p to each eye. The TV and Blu-ray player even show this on the display. You'll know the TV is engaged in FullHD 3D, because before you engage in 3D viewing, the TV makes you accept a legal disclaimer before FullHD 3D playback is allowed.
I also wanted to let you know that some Panasonic Blu-ray players are packed with a different 3D demo disc. They have the same cover on all of them, but a different number on the disc. The other disc features many more clips, however, most of them are in 720p/60fps.
One is called "Enjoying the Great Outdoors" and shows people hot air ballooning, skydiving and boating. Another clip exclusive to that disc is a scary music video featuring Sarah Brightman wondering through a forest dressed like a witch, singing to a group of children.
There is also a clip from what looks like a cartoon show (looks foreign, but hardly qualifies as Anime) that I'm not familiar with. Finally there is a clip explaining how the 3D TV works,
complete with planets and stars in outer space. Both feature different menus as well.
This disc is meant to be the one on display in Magnolia, but it seems like some Blu-ray players
are shipping with different discs. Just so you know.
Rumor has it that when the other 3D Panasonic Blu-ray player (the BD-350) is released in late April it will be shipping with Ice Age: Dawn of the Dinosaurs included in the Blu-ray player instead of either of these demo discs. But that is less concrete. The BD-350 adds DNLA to the player, and will include a different demo disc, but that is all that is known about it at this time.
Kpkelley the VT25 will have a dark bronze bezel. (Having seen one it is the color of an old used penny.) It is exactly like the silver one, only a bronze color. It looks dark in a dark room, but if there is light it is reflective slightly reflective. It is not glossy, and neither is the VT20.
Also, the Panasonic if set up correctly should be eye level. Your store's merchandising team may have set the TV part of the way, and is planning to come back and finish it later. Our store did the same thing, but I went ahead with the instructions and finished it myself.
Starscream, the 65VT25 will retail for $4,499 when it is released around June 5th. The 58" will be released the last week in May for $3,499, while the 54" ($2,999) and the 50VT25 ($2,699)
will be released the first week of May.
The primary difference between the 50VT20 and the 50VT25 are as follows:
the VT20 is produced in Japan exclusively for Best Buy and is Silver. It will be sold in Best Buys across the country beginning June 5th, and is only available in one size, 50."
These prices just showed up yesterday in Best Buy's RSS stock system, so while they do seem official they are subject to change. Panasonic is probably gaging sales of the 50vt20 to see if the price is too high/too low for the VT25 series.
The VT25 is bronze, will be available to all high-end retailers nationally that wish to sell it,
and features ISFccc calibration controls and RS-232 control for home automation systems.
It commands a $100 premium over the VT20 in the 50" size. Certain models will be made in Japan, others in Mexico. Not sure which ones yet.
With every review, the wait for bigger TV sizes gets harder and harder. I have yet to see this TV as there are no Magnolia stores here in Nebraska (I will be in Denver in a few weeks and hope to check it out there), but I have seen the Samsung and I was fairly impressed with it, save for the ghosting. Just about every review I've read says this is the better TV though.
Anyway, I'm very interested to see how 3D changes nature programs. I would LOVE to see them shoot native 3D documentaries with the quality and budget of Planet Earth or Life. Exciting stuff to be sure.
Jedi Fonger, Sony's solution (contrary to what has been reported at large) will be able to pass 1080p to each eye through a 10.2 gbps cable or higher, without audio. You will have to use a separate optical cable for audio. Same goes for the Playstation 3. The Sony's will be able to do this with a firmware update in June/July. The Samsung and Panasonic allow 1080p to each eye and HD audio through one cord since it incorporates HDMI 1.4. The difference comes when a HDMI compatible receiver is put into play. With the Samsung you have to have an HDMI 1.4 receiver to handshake with, otherwise the video and audio will not pass through to the TV properly. The Panasonic one-ups this mode by giving you 2 HDMI outputs, Port 1 is an HDMI 1.4 port that can pass both audio and video, or you can use port 1 for 3D video using the HDMI 1.3 standard mode and port 2 for bitstreaming HD codec or PCM audio formats using the HDMI 1.3 standard mode.
Also, both the Panasonic and Samsung feature built in Wi-fi. The Samsung is built right into the player, while the Panasonic uses an optional wi-fi dongle included in the box, along with an extension cord. It is rather large and looks like an engagement ring box.
I told all the naysayers that 3D will rule! I am so excited! I saw it at CES and was floored. I have already convinced the wife to let me get one for the bed room. We will keep the PRO I!% 60 inch Kuro in the family room, move the older Elite model to the basement and relace it with a second generation Panny...60 inches no doubt or 58 whatever......i love this age of innovation
72" minimum for me (I'd prefer a 10" model) and glasses that weigh less that a pound each. I figure a year, year and a half before we get real with this thing.
And maybe, more than a couple of kid flicks to watch? Is that too much to ask? When will they get out of the cartoon phase? Most people are scared to hand a little kid their flip-lid cell phone, let along five or six first-graders wanting to see "A Christmas Carol" and fighting over who gets to wear Mom's pink glasses....
I hope this isn't a silly question or an off-topic question, but do you have to have a 3-d HDTV and a 3d blu-ray player of the same brand in order to make it work? I got the Samsung un46c7000 that recently came out, and the Sony 3-d blu ray player, the one where it will be 3-d capabable after a firmware upgrade.
They don't have to be the same brand for each, right?
tman418, no the Blu-ray players don't have to match, but it's always nice if they do.
However, contrary to a lot of reports online, you DO have to use glasses made by the manufacturer.
So if you have a Panasonic, the glasses won't work on the Samsung TV or vice-versa. The reason for this is the different shutter speed rates, and the different color tints used on the glasses, but also because the IR emitters that are embedded in the TV and the glasses are only made to work with each other. I could see a company make pairs of glasses that claim to be compatible with different brands, but the quality of these glasses remains to be seen.
They've gotta come down on the prices of those glasses. What if you have a big family who wants to watch Shrek 3D? Hardware only comes with 1 pair. Let's say you, your wife and 3 kids want to watch it. They really expect you to shell out $600 extra bucks so your family can all enjoy the movie with you? This is years away from feasibility, folks. You can vote down my comment all you want but that doesn't make it any less true.
We saw the demo at the Panasonic traveling tour this weekend, and was able to ask numerous questions. Like many, I've seen Samsung and Panasonic displays, and Panasonic wins hands down with its Plasma models. The processing of the 3D is much smoother on the Plasmas. However, the Panasonic rep did say that despite the fact that the Samsung does not provide 1080p per eye on current models (LCD cannot process it fast enough), they will be introducing a 55" Samsung Plasma. I plan to wait until any kinks get worked out, but a a huge hi-def fan, and dual format owner, I'd be interested in seeing the Panasonic 65" demo'd properly when it is released. As far as the glasses, I was told several companies are already working on glasses that are in the $50-100 range. I am guessing Logitech or some other third party accessories provider will figure out a way to get in bed with the TV manufacturers to sync. They're not stupid, they know the price tag on the glasses is prohibitive, especially for large families.
Part of my job training, I went to see their "tour" when they were in Detroit last week and it was impressive. The only thing is the glasses are uncomfortable and turn off easily. Either way, I love it and can't wait to start selling them (and to buy one)
As much as I love this new technlogy no way Im buying 3D equitment until there is some good 3D content. Monsters vs Aliens is a mediocre movie and is exclusively packaged. Avatar is supposidly not coming in 3D this year. 3D will never take off until the movie studios give it proper wide releases. I can sit on my money until the studios choose to give 3D the support it deserves.
The glasses do nothing to hurt quality of picture. Picture flaws exist as they do on some 2D Blu-Rays but the 3D experiance these systems deliever is gorgous. Mild flaws like ghosting and flicker can occur but they are very mild at the present and I suspect will become less and less of a problem as time goes on.
As far as 3D glasses go...we were out celebrating a birthday the other nigth with a bunch of friends and family and one of our friends was saying that he saw a 3D TV that had a flip down filter thing in the front of the screen that would let you see the 3D without glasses. I asked how this filter separated the left/right frames, and he said, he actually said "good question" and had no idea how it worked. I'm just wondering if it's not something like a lenticuluar cover. I don't know, but if they can do something that doesn't require wearing cumbersome 3D glasses, then I think it'd be more widely accepted in the market.
I saw the Panasonic and the Samsung at BB Magnolia a few days ago.
Mind blowing Panasonic...the Samsung was so-so. I thought the prices were going to be as mind blowing too. Not really as high as one might think. I still think the glasses need to lower in price.
my country still stocks the first batch of blu rays, and only few have come out since then. so i have no idea how this 3d crap will work here. im just waiting to get some new stock on ordinary blu rays. pathetic
3D will fail, just like HD-DVD. I think that wearing a goofy set of glasses to watch a 3D Blu-ray is a complete waste of time and money. 3D should stay were it belongs in the commercial theater. I think blu-ray is fantastic, but upgrading to 3D is just pointless. These companies such as Panasonic and Samsung are basically forcing this new technology down your throats. I will never support this format no matter what it does for the home theater. 3D is a sinking ship. We went from DVD to Blu-ray now you want us to upgrade again. Tangible discs will all be obsolete (including 3D blu-ray) when everything will be downloaded in about 2 to 3 years. Stop wasting your hard earned money on this crap.
I saw the panasonic demo recently at BB/Magnolia and was pretty impressed. Definately not your grandfather's 3d experience. There were several clips in the demo I saw, some travel related which had some real nice depth going into the picture/panel, and a sports clip which had a suprising amount of dimension popping out of the picture at me. It was better than I was expecting. It's all about the content though. Need good content to be available for folks to want to purchase.
As much praise as this Panasonic is getting, I can't bring myself to buy a Panasonic plasma after they were called out for their blacks turning gray over time and their response of "Yeah....we meant to do that". And for those that think that won't affect this new line, Panasonic didn't say this issue would go away, just that the fading would be spread out over a longer time so you don't notice the change as easily. Sort of the frog in a pot of slowly heating water theory I guess.
Brian73 if you really think downloading will be out in 2-3 years. And that will be the only thing then you will have another thing coming.
There will always be people that would rather collect and show stuff off. Thats how humans are. We like to show our "trophies". Also what will happen when your harddrive crashes then all the data is lost.
And not to mention to download a bluray movie on the net. It will take tons of time to download a file that is 30 GB or even 40-45 GB. And what will happen to all the extras that studios make while making the movies. No if downloading comes it will coexist with blu ray.
3D is just a new thing for blu ray that will make blu ray technology stronger
+1 Right on man! I feel the same way. This 'new 3D technology' requiring specialized brand specific, horrifically expensive, battery powered glasses can just stay in the theaters for all I care. I am not going to throw away my money and jump on the band wagon. I don't think many people in their right minds should either. Tech junkies will undoubtedly love it, endorse it, promote it, and try to convince others that this is the greatest thing since HD TV came out. I'm not buying it no matter how sugar coated and inflated their claims are. They can try to shove it down our throats, but I'm not convinced. It just isn't there yet. I encourage others to be sensible and wait for 3D to develop further along when those glasses aren't needed any longer. So far, we have had at least 60 years of some kind of glasses to wear. How much longer is it going to take to make the REAL technological breakthrough and develop real 3D without requiring some kind of eye wear? When that happens, hopefully within the next 10 years or so, I'll consider buying 3D TV and a 3D player . For now, no thanks. I am not wasting my money on it. I just prefer to wait for 3D to mature (without glasses), become universally accepted, and for prices to come down.
If wearing a "goofy" set of glasses to watch 3D blu-ray is a complete waste of time and money why on earth are you responding to a 3D article WASTING time writing about it?
And upgrading to 3D is pointless? Did you even read the review you are commenting on? Let me quote " Grand Canyon offers perhaps the best moment in the set; water seems to splash straight onto the viewer, resulting in residual droplets of water that seem to be dripping off the lenses of the 3D glasses".
That sounds pretty awesome to me and definately worth upgrading for and will be to many other people. Also HDGURU said the 3d effect is better than movie teatres... still pointless?
And how are companies like Panasonic and Samsung forcing 3D down your throat? Last time i checked 3D is backwards compatible with 2D - meaning any 3D blu rays will play the 2D version in a regular blu ray player. If you don't like the idea of 3D and wearing glasses you NEVER have to upgrade and even if every bluray released was 3D the 2D version would play in all your current equipment, so what are you crying about? How is anything being FORCED down your throat when you never have to upgrade if you dont like 3D?
You sound like a big cry baby who bought a new TV recently thinking 3D was a big gimmick and now these reviews for the panny plasma are coming out and they are saying its "astounding", "Better than 3D in the theatres", "has to be seen" etc etc, and your mad you wont be able to get one of these tvs for awhile, why else would you be mad? please explain - You dislike 3D and therefore you never have to buy a 3d blu ray player or a 3d tv and any 3d blu ray that gets released the 2D version (which you seem to prefer) will play perfectly fine in all your equipment, so what on earth are you mad about?
Jeeezzz. Calm down. You don't have to buy it if you don't want to. Nothing is getting shoved down your preverbial throat. In fact, when they become available, 3D BDs will continue to work in 2D on your current setup. Not sure why you let this bother you all so terribly much!
I totally agree with you. Anyone who is on here whinning and moaning and hating on 3D blu-ray is either jealous or mad - because they recently bought a new tv thinking 3d was just a gimmick and now are reading reviews for how awesome the 3D panny is. Or they bought a TV within the past yr for 2-3K and won't be able to buy another TV for a few years and since they can't have 3D right away, they will hate on it.
There is just absolutely no other reason to hate on 3D blu ray. If you don't like 3D and wearing glasses DO NOT BUY IT! 3D blu rays will play the 2D version in your current setup so you will NEVER have to upgrade if you dislike 3D. If you don't like the idea of 3D and wearing glasses you never have to use it or upgrade to is so what is the problem? Anyone not interested in 3D and wearing glasses should not care, shrug their shoulders and move on, not go into 3D article and forum and spit out hate and unfounded nonsense. The only person who would do that is a HATER, and HATERS are jealous, thats why they hate.
Where's the product? I'm not a hater of this technology, but this cart before the horse rollout makes it pretty clear who's pushing home theater 3D. Being a cheapskate I will wait until all of you early adopters iron out the wrinkles.
Yes by all means go for the gen 1 models! 5-10 years down the line when things settle down I can totally see myself jumping on this, provided the blacks are kuro level. But to consider it now for me would be foolhardy.
I know it is already here but it still is in it's initial stages, in other words, there is a lot of debugging to be done. Just read repete66211's comments. All I'm saying is, people be patient and don't blow your money now. Maybe not cretins but lemmings!!!!!!!
I went to Best Buy and saw the Panasonic and Samsung 3D.
Panasonic rated about an "8", it was bright, colors were vivid and the motion was good. Only problem were a few flat 2D surfaces in the demo. The Panasonic glasses felt akward.
Samsung rated about a "6", it was bright, colors were bold and the motion was jittery, froze & at time was out of sync with the glasses. Main problems were screen reflections, poor screen uniformity, and less than smooth motion. The Samsung glasses felt great, real natural.
Thank you for your insightfull postings; highly appreciated!
By the way, here is a link on the manufacturer of the 3D glasses. AFAIK, they make the glasses for most of the 3D companies (like Panasonic, Samsung, Sony, and LG), but I am not 100% positive on which ones.
Ok so I made it out to a magnolia near me today. I had to check out the Panasonic. I thought it looked fantastic but so does the Samsung people saying it is way better are just fans. I think the demo loop has more variety I liked the grand cannyon and the guy doing the backflip was really 3D. Astroboy looked amazing walking through the field of grass. The color was great too. Both the Panasonic and the Samsung looked pretty close in PQ to me after over an hour of viewing. It would be easier to compare if the were playing the same demo. I am sold though and plan to get a set within 2 months. The hard part is choosing. I know now I at least want 55" as the Panasonic seemed too small even though its still a 50". I think 55 is ok 65" would be awesome. I really am leaning towards the Samsung for several reasons. The first being I play a lot of video games and with LCD burn in is not even possible. I also surf the web via my PS3. The Samsung also can convert any 2D image to 3D. Maybe its not as good as true 3D but it still looks great for video games. The sales guy at best buy demoed Street fighter for me and it looked awesome. I can only imagine what fallout 3 or Dead space would be like in 3D! The last reason is that the glasses for the Panasonic are terrible.They are heavy and uncomfortable. The Samsung glasses are super light and comfortable. I could wear them for hours no problem. That being said its still a close call and I plan on checking them both out much more in the next two months. They are both mighty impressive and pretty equal in my eyes. I cant say one looked clearly better than the other.
lets just all agree that movie downloading is the real problem here. I will always want to have a copy in my hands of a dvd, bluray or in the future 3d bluray. bu people must understand some people can not percept the 3d picture in their brain. they are known not to be tricked by opticul illusions. so theres aanother reason for keeping the 2D while coexisting with 3D
I haven't seens a demo yet but I have a couple of questions for those who have seen it. The photos look like the Panasonic TV is fairly thick. Does anybody know what the demensions are? Also, do the 3D glasses make any noise? My wife is sensitive to noises so this would be important to her. The background noises in the stores and sounds from the TV may drown out the noise except when there are quite times during a regular movie.
My Best Buy was demoing Monsters Vs. Aliens. Being the first time I've seen the new 3-D technology, I was admittedly impressed. Yes, the price is high and the glasses are sub-optimal, but my son loved it! Damn, my XBR2 is old.
I saw the demo at the Best Buy store near where i live and after what i saw with this new technology i was pretty impressed. I'll have to invest on buying a new 3D tv when they go lower and i'm gonna wait at least 3 to 5 years to upgrade when the price is right and when more 3d content is available. For us PS3 owners here we'll have the 3D playback when the firmware is available this summer which is a huge plus (Gotta love sony for that) so we don't have to invest on another blu-ray player with 3D playback.
Saw the demos at Best Buy/Magnolia today. Better than I'd feared, but less than I'd hoped. Most parts of the image looked very good, but some parts looked like 2D backdrops or cutouts, kind of like View-Master reels or Magic Eye stereograms. So I was impressed and disappointed at the same time.
One big mistake that is being made, in my opinion, is the lack of content, which was made worse by the exlusives with Samsung, ect. You will only be able to get the Dreamworks with Samsung, and Sony will do it's own with Meatballs, I think this is a big mistake, they should be releasing these on the open market.
You are so adamant to get back at the haters, reading your rhetoric against them is just as bad as theirs that's against 3D. Let them say what they want for COL! Your bickering at them is just as childish. This is a forum you know. There will be lovers, and haters, and all those in between who could perhaps careless one way or the other which includes myself. Let everyone have a voice. Who cares if they hate 3D! Your amateur armchair psychology profiling them as jealous and thus hating it is unfounded and complete nonsense. Get a life man.
Buying a 3D TV or player at this point is utterly pointless. There is no content, the kit commands a premium and doubtless suffers from the usual glitches and unimplemented functionality that all new tech suffers from. Give it a year or two and 3D will be a standard feature in every player. By that time there may actually be enough content to even justify owning a set.
Thanks for the review. I sat in front of the Panasonic 3D HDTV at Best Buy for about 15 minutes. I was quite impressed with the level of depth the Full HD 3D had to offer. I was not expecting something this good (at least not in the beginning stages). I agree with the Astro Boy not offering much 3D, but the best was the part where those people were going down those rapids. The water splashing in 3D was very cool. I almost wanted to take the glasses off and wipe them. It created a very cool effect. If there is more 3D like this then I will definitely buy a 3D HDTV in the future. Most of the stuff I watch will probably still be 2D, but for animated movies and some cool action movies it would be nice to watch them in 3D. The Samsung 3D HDTV I never really got to see anything on it. While I was at Best Buy they had a baseball game on and that was in 3D, but the 3D was very poor. I'm unsure if the Panasonic has a 2D to 3D converter in it, but the Samsung did and it can make 2D into 3D, but I was not impressed with the result. A true 3D source must be present in order for one to really see the benefit and effect of 3D.
Why is it that when I saw Avatar in 3D at the theater they gave us simple cheap plastic glasses, but these glasses are battery operated. Why do we need the glasses and pic to be in sync? It wasnt like that in the theater and it looked great.
In your opening here you say: "Beginning with the bad first, it's essential to point out that as of today, there are no Full HD 3D Blu-ray discs for sale on the market." I wonder if you have not yet seen Coraline - it is a full length 3D Movie made with Stop Animation and an incredible movie experience. Notably I have a wonderful Panasonic Plasma Panel 46PZ800A, that gives me high contrast ratio of 2 million to one (necessary for appreciating depth) and a stock PS3. On Saturday last we hosted a 3D Party, to screen Coraline to a group of twenty somethings and they simply loved the movie, and the 3d effects. We used the glasses supplied which are simple paper/plastic versions and gave sufficient true results with this great movie to introduce the concept of full length home 3d movie experience. The oohs and ahhs and wows, came flowing throughout the movie, everyone had a great time. So I urge members to see what their current panels can do as we await for the technology to develop. Oh, and you have to see Coraline 3D, it is a very impressive full length 3D movie. The movie was released in early February 2009 in the USA by the way...and here in Singapore in October the same year.