Panasonic's gradual move to exit the Plasma TV market, fact or fiction? - Home Theater Forum and Systems - HomeTheaterShack.com

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post #1 of 12 Old 03-26-13, 01:36 AM Thread Starter
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Panasonic's gradual move to exit the Plasma TV market, fact or fiction?

As you may know by now, reports have been distributed, with no actual source mentioned, by Japan's The Nikkei newspaper, and Reuters, saying that Panasonic may be getting out of the Plasma TV business slowly over the next three years.

Some suggest that Panasonic is the leader in plasma and that such a loss would be a tragedy in the industry. Plasmas are said to have the best picture quality with it's deep blacks and vivid colors, especially in a medium to dark setting.

The Japanese newspaper reported that Panasonic has plans to shut down production of plasma TV panels at it's main plant in Amagaskai sometime in 2014. Also mentioned is that the company is selling off real estate and has already written off equipment value at the plant.

Is Panasonic really exiting the plasma market?

While this seems to be a plan set in motion if you believe the reports, a Panasonic spokesperson did tell Reuters that no final decisions have been made in regards to the future of it's TV line.

While Panasonic did launch 16 new plasma models for 2013, it also reported record losses last year. Also, more lower-cost LCDs have been being purchased in favor of the more expensive plasma, so it's difficult to know their direction.

If they do drop the line though, they wouldn't be the only ones. Very few companies are still selling products in this line. It has been stated that only Panasonic, LG, and Samsung will have plasmas for sale in 2013.

Many speculate that Panasonic will focus on OLED TVs, especially with the recent announcement of it's partnership with Sony. However, Henry Hauser, Panasonic North American vice president of merchandising display products, told CNET that midterm future products were likely to focus on 4K rather than OLED.

What will this mean for Samsung?

Some say that with Panasonic moving away from plasma, if that's the direction, that this would likely be the end of plasma altogether. They suggest that other big name manufacturers, like Samsung, not having Panasonic to compete with in the plasma arena, will likely focus their efforts elsewhere as well.

Samsung, being the #1 TV manufacturer in the entire world primarily because of its LCD and LED lines, and doing very well in the mobile phone market, does not rely so heavily on it's plasma TV sales.

Panasonic's five full series of plasmas

As stated previously, Panasonic has launched a new line of plasmas this year, so even if their is a slow decline, or a plan to get out of the game completely, it'll likely be a while yet.

Here's a brief run down of this year's line up:

- TC-PZT60 series in 60 and 65 inches
- TC-PVT60 series in 55, 60, and 65 inches
- TC-PST60 series in 50, 55, 60, and 65 inches
- TC-PS60 series in 42, 50, 55, 60, and 65 inches
- TC-PX60 series in 42 and 50 inches

In closing, from the dozen or more articles that I read, whether Panasonic is leaving the plasma television market is anyone's guess. As it stands, as stated, the company itself doesn't know yet.

Perhaps this is just a tactic to get consumers to back their favorite products and start writing about all the positive things related to plasmas? This "news leak" sure caught me up on the some of the latest in plasma (and other) TV technology, as well as Panasonic's latest line-up (touched on above).
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post #2 of 12 Old 03-26-13, 10:03 AM
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Re: Panasonic's gradual move to exit the Plasma TV market, fact or fiction?

Very good article. It seems that with the introduction of a new series (the ZT), that such a move isn't eminent. A lot of Panasonic's losses may stem from world economics and not the true fall-off in demand for plasma sets. Certainly, Panasonic has some of the best plasma offerings so it would be hurtful for plasma fans to have this happen, but the fat lady hasn't sung yet so we can hope for the best. It might be a telling sign if Panasonic were to introduce a 4K plasma at a realistic price.
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post #3 of 12 Old 03-26-13, 04:59 PM
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Re: Panasonic's gradual move to exit the Plasma TV market, fact or fiction?

Seems like Plasma has been losing the fight -- my impression is that most casual buyers tend to think that LCD technology is the latest and greatest while plasma is old and tired.
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post #4 of 12 Old 03-26-13, 05:12 PM
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Seems like Plasma has been losing the fight -- my impression is that most casual buyers tend to think that LCD technology is the latest and greatest while plasma is old and tired.
I agree and would also add that a lot of those same buyers are still afraid of potential burn in, image retention and/or can't be bothered to take the time or care, especially initially, plasma needs. A work colleague is planning on buying a big screen HDTV very soon and won't even consider plasma because of the aforementioned issues. He wants simple plug and play. He's often said he doesn't want a TV that he has to worry about if young his kids leave any channel or video game on screen for a long period of time while he's working and his wife's busy with more important things around the house etc. Many consumers don't want the work/worry a plasma involves.
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post #5 of 12 Old 03-26-13, 05:14 PM
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Re: Panasonic's gradual move to exit the Plasma TV market, fact or fiction?

All of my coworkers and friends who have bought new tv's last year and this year so far have all purchased LED tv's. No one I know bought a plasma tv..
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post #6 of 12 Old 03-26-13, 08:57 PM
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Re: Panasonic's gradual move to exit the Plasma TV market, fact or fiction?

I agree with you guys...

All that being said, a buddy of mine ask for help with a purchase and through some convincing he ended up with a Panny plasma. As far as I know, they love their new display... and I'm confident it's going to be that way for a very long time.

It's a shame that plasma has this stigma, if you will, about it.
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post #7 of 12 Old 03-26-13, 09:12 PM
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Re: Panasonic's gradual move to exit the Plasma TV market, fact or fiction?

my55", S1, 3 yo panny was broken in with the fullcolor slides , sits in a totally darkened room and I've tried various settings as suggested on other threads/ sites. It has never been used for TV. But the panny bd 220, xbox, ps3 amd laptop and homenetwork make/keep the look pristine no IR, ghosting. BAtman, LOTR,Avatar, and ,many others just balamced and detailed. At this rate I'll wait until I see how 4K and OLED's come together. I expect to upgrade to an Oppo 103.
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post #8 of 12 Old 03-26-13, 09:39 PM
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Re: Panasonic's gradual move to exit the Plasma TV market, fact or fiction?

I always do my best to push Plasma sets on family/friends for their main listening room (unless they are going the projector/screen route). Our family has LED's in most rooms, but the larger displays are Panny Plasmas. I've help a lot of friends set up theirs and most have done plasma if 50" and over. Some have commented on "why is their LCD's not as crisp and clean as the Plasma" and I come back with the reason I pushed them to go the Plasma route.

It's sad that the technology will slowly die, hopefully something will come along that can match and better it. They still give the best blacks and IMO for anything with motion, no LCD/LED can beat them (I always notice the artifacts and trails, even on the best LCD/LEDs.

Ray


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post #9 of 12 Old 03-26-13, 10:58 PM
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Re: Panasonic's gradual move to exit the Plasma TV market, fact or fiction?

I'm not sure if it's true, but I heard last year that government is placing stricter energy standards on televisions each year. Supposedly it is getting more and more difficult and costly for plasmas to meet these standards. I mean, they use a whopping $4 a month in power! Good grief.
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post #10 of 12 Old 03-27-13, 03:36 PM
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Re: Panasonic's gradual move to exit the Plasma TV market, fact or fiction?

I love my Panasonic 720p 50" plasma, and no one has come by and not agreed, despite it being 720p. Actually, no one even realizes unless I tell them. I might reconsider the idea to sell it with the home (tricky install/removal).

As far as energy, if you calibrate it rather than running it on bright mode, it takes a measly amount of current, far fewer than the stated usage or the rack of amps used for audio.
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