Conclusion: Whether you want 3D at all or think you don't need all the smart TV connectivity isn't really the issue here. The TC-P55ST50 offers picture quality that is so good at such a reasonable price that the 3D and Smart TV features come along for the ride.
Pros: Thin bezel, Attractive and sleek profile, Excellent black levels, Accurate, saturated colors, Excellent value ($1699 MSRP)
Cons: 3D glasses not included, Only three HDMI inputs
Excerpt: LCD or plasma? By now the question feels as quaint as “Coke or Pepsi?” Plasmas consume more energy, have shorter lifespans, and suffer from burn-in issues, so it’s an easy choice. Right? Wrong.
Pros: Splendid color and deep blacks. Enough built-in apps to make a Roku box jealous. Better-than-average speakers. Blissfully smart menu system.
Cons: Horrendous soap-opera effect that’s hard to fully eliminate. So-so brightness paired with an overactive auto-brightness control. Not enough HDMI inputs. 3-D glasses not included.
Conclusion: With the Panasonic TC-PST50 series you get accurate colors and solid black level performance in a nicely styled plasma HDTV, but the panel doesn?t get very bright, and 3D glasses are not part of the deal.
Pros: Excellent color accuracy. Good black levels. Robust audio output. Sleek design.
Cons: Not very bright. Uses lots of power. Only three HDMI ports. 3D glasses not included.
Conclusion: If we didn’t already know that the TC-P55ST50 wasn’t Panasonic’s top-of-the-line plasma, we’d swear that it was. Based on picture performance alone, this could just as well be Panasonic’s flagship model. That it isn’t comes down to a few bells and whistles and a slightly trimmer form factor.
Pros: Outstanding black level and contrast performance, Great brightness, Nearly perfect color, Naturally smooth motion, Excellent Internet portal (Viera Connect)
Cons: Black levels suffer in bright rooms, Limited HDMI connections, High power consumption, high heat output, Calibration takes a while