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All plasma panel production consolidated into a single factory

We already know that Panasonic is planning to exit the plasma television market by March of 2014. The company has now issued a new statement offering more details on its end of production for plasma display panels.

Panasonic says that the company will end production of plasma display panels in December of 2013 and end business operations at its Amagasaki P3 Factory, P5 factory, and P4 factory. Production was already stopped at P3 factory and production at the P5 factory is currently suspended. The P4 factory will cease operating by the end of March 2014.

Panasonic says its plasma panels received lots of praise over the years and there had previously been strong demand from consumers around the world.
But the company also acknowledged that the rapid development of large-screen LCD and severe price competition in the global market led to significantly declining demand for plasma panels in the flat panel display market. Those factors led the company to decide to stop production.

Source: Panasonic [PDF]

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By whickywhickyjim on 10/31/2013 10:46:54 AM , Rating: 5
Can't blame the company. They make an excellent product, but it's not their fault consumers aren't interested in buying quality sets. Sad.

RE: >.<
By retrospooty on 10/31/13, Rating: -1
RE: >.<
By piroroadkill on 10/31/2013 1:52:19 PM , Rating: 3
Wrong. I'd buy a Panasonic plasma over an TFT-LCD if I wanted a large TV.

RE: >.<
By retrospooty on 10/31/13, Rating: 0
RE: >.<
By 91TTZ on 10/31/2013 2:28:38 PM , Rating: 4
Do you care to elaborate? Saying that something's time "has just come and gone" doesn't do anything to explain what you mean.

RE: >.<
By Makaveli on 10/31/2013 3:27:55 PM , Rating: 5
lol restropooty

you sound like bestbuy shopper :P

I just picked up a samsung plasma this year I would never go back to LCD/LED for inferior picture quality.

I will look at OLED when they are out.

RE: >.<
By TakinYourPoints on 10/31/2013 6:57:59 PM , Rating: 2
Standard defense of inferior technology from the usual suspects. They are super reliable contrarian indicators, its uncanny.

I took delivery of a 65" VT60 this week. I'm very happy that its about as good as my last-gen Elite Kuro at less than half the price. It needed a little more calibration than the Kuro but that's all. Absolutely gorgeous, anyone who cares about picture quality should be looking at the ST or VT series Panasonics before they go away.

This will more than tide me over until OLED or 4K or whatever takes over in a couple years.

RE: >.<
By ChronoReverse on 10/31/2013 7:51:42 PM , Rating: 2
Yeah, I picked up a PS64 (midway between the S60 and ST60) and I'm wondering why I took so long to jump onto plasma.

RE: >.<
By retrospooty on 10/31/2013 10:40:54 PM , Rating: 1
Please, point out to me where I was defending inferior technology. My point is what many people consider at or near the best player in plasma is quitting the business entirely. They're getting more and more scarce. Therefore its time has passed. I really couldn't care less about the pros and cons of plasma or LCD. palm Web OS and BlackBerry OS 10 are also pretty good, what is gone and the other is just about gone. Over is over it really doesn't matter why

RE: >.<
By TakinYourPoints on 11/1/2013 5:27:08 PM , Rating: 2
You spent numerous posts defending the quality of LCD relative to plasma the last time Panasonic was a news story. If you've backed off that and are taking a more pragmatic approach, fine. Its defending the relative quality of an objectively inferior technology that was my only problem.

RE: >.<
By retrospooty on 11/1/13, Rating: -1
RE: >.<
By Reclaimer77 on 11/3/2013 6:03:40 AM , Rating: 2
Takin I've noticed that whatever technology you happen to prefer, the alternatives are always "inferior technologies".

Calling LCD a blanket "inferior technology" across the board is just hyperbole. Both LCD and Plasma have pro's and con's.

Its defending the relative quality of an objectively inferior technology that was my only problem.

I'm sure we're all losing sleep knowing you had a problem.

RE: >.<
By TakinYourPoints on 11/7/2013 12:26:46 AM , Rating: 2
I wouldn't buy something inferior on purpose, not unless my budget is limited and I don't care about the tradeoffs.

As for tradeoffs, I made clear that LCDs are better when you have no light control in very bright environments. Otherwise there is no question that color reproduction, motion, and artifacts from band-aid methods lead to an inferior picture.

I'm not being mean when I say this, there are just objective facts.

RE: >.<
By Kiffberet on 11/1/2013 8:32:28 AM , Rating: 3
This will more than tide me over until OLED or 4K or whatever takes over in a couple years.

Couple years?
That's the kind of consumerism that governments love.

RE: >.<
By Dr. Kenneth Noisewater on 11/3/2013 2:24:20 PM , Rating: 2
I got a 50" Panny plasma for the bedroom, it's 720p but its size and distance make that appropriate. I was considering a plasma for the living room, but I really wanted >=70" and Panasonic doesn't build an affordable plasma that large, and even if they did they don't offer any passive 3D plasma sets. I got the Costco Vizio 70" instead, and have been fairly pleased with it, especially for the price.

Comparing the two I prefer the blacks on the plasma but it's not like they're horrible on the Vizio, and zoned lighting helps it a bit. Passive 3D (Dredd, Hugo, Dial M for Murder) works pretty darned well, and given the layout of the living room theater space, all seats are within the relatively-narrow optimal 3D viewing area.

I reckon if/when the Vizio breaks out of warranty at some point, if OLED isn't stupid overpriced I'd probably end up with that. It'd need to be in the $2000 for 70+" area though, and passive or glasses-free 3D.

RE: >.<
By s_p_kay on 10/31/13, Rating: 0
RE: >.<
By FITCamaro on 10/31/2013 11:10:45 AM , Rating: 1
They're not competitive because people want the cheapest thing out there. Quality be damned.

Some of us are more than willing to live with the tradeoffs. Unfortunately not enough of us.

RE: >.<
By Reclaimer77 on 10/31/2013 12:18:59 PM , Rating: 5
Uhhh the cheapest thing out there IS plasma and has been for a while.

RE: >.<
By max_payne on 10/31/2013 12:09:03 PM , Rating: 1
>plasma pixel brightness<
I don't know about that. When I have a look in the store, plasma display looks so dim compare to any LCD/LED. The later has much higher brightness and the black advantage of the plasma use to have is now non existent visually. So that kill plasma for me.

RE: >.<
By ChronoReverse on 10/31/2013 12:16:25 PM , Rating: 2
Eh, the black advantage is still huge, not sure what you mean by that.

As for brightness, the LCD settings in-store are WAY too bright. I had to set my old LCD to really low brightness settings and it's still too bright most of the time if I'm watching in a dark room (which is ideal for movies). And even then the blacks are actually glowing when you're watching in the dark.

RE: >.<
By degobah77 on 10/31/2013 12:59:27 PM , Rating: 2
That's because LCDs in stores are set to TORCH MODE to catch your eye and would look terrible at home with the same settings. And I have no idea what you're talking about when it comes to black levels. Only LCD that comes close to a plasma is a $5,000 Sharp.

RE: >.<
By Makaveli on 10/31/2013 3:34:00 PM , Rating: 2
i'm sorry max but you either need to get your eyes checked or you've been looking at shit tv's in a display at at store that aren't calibrated.

I've never seen any LCD/LED beat a plasma for black levels.

RE: >.<
By Reclaimer77 on 10/31/13, Rating: 0
RE: >.<
By degobah77 on 10/31/13, Rating: -1
RE: >.<
By Reclaimer77 on 10/31/13, Rating: 0
RE: >.<
By degobah77 on 10/31/13, Rating: 0
RE: >.<
By Reclaimer77 on 10/31/2013 4:34:28 PM , Rating: 1
It's not a forgone conclusion that we'll EVER have OLED sets. They're massively expensive to manufacture, at any scale, and there's been little improvement in that area.

I care about image quality too, but not enough to spend $5k+ on a television lol.

I can be all mad about it and thrown my online temper tantrums all day, but plasmas are going away and that's the way it is.

Nah I wouldn't worry too much man. Plasmas have been "going away" for like 10 years now. They'll probably be around a good long while still.

But I do feel better about myself when I read, learn, re-learn, discover, and share knowledge.

I hear you, me too. But you were kinda coming off like a bigot over it. If I misread you, I apologize.

RE: >.<
By degobah77 on 10/31/13, Rating: 0
RE: >.<
By retrospooty on 10/31/2013 11:40:02 PM , Rating: 1
"I do come across like a dick and an elitist one at that. Bad personality trait, lol. I'm also fairly ignorant and purposely obtuse sometimes too"

TakinYourPoints is that you? Just kidding, he would never admit it. LOL

RE: >.<
By rocketbuddha on 10/31/2013 5:41:20 PM , Rating: 2
Any technology can only exist as long as there is money in selling the products that utilize it.

Pioneer exited the Plasma market when it had possibly the best HDTV in the market, the Kuro series.

The writing was on the wall for plasma for a long time. Not that it was worse than LED, but the advantages that Plasma had over LCD became lesser and lesser once the LED backlighting came into the picture.

The major downer for Plasma is power. Also because of that Plasma cannot be ubiquitous across various devices. LED due to power advantages can run from simple cell phone screens to tablets to huge televisions.

So it is easier to have a factory capable of manufacturing LED panels over plasma panels and hence LEDs have the biggest advantage of all which is economies of scale. I was surprised that Panasonic held out this long.

So now it is LG and Samsung who have some Plasma TVs. Since their premier ones are not Plasmas, I think it will die a slow death.

RE: >.<
By Makaveli on 10/31/2013 5:00:14 PM , Rating: 1
"A decent LCD has "good enough" blacks. They don't burn in, and they don't make horribly annoying high pitch whines while heating your entire house up."

this lol speaks volume you have no clue what you are talking about i'm sorry.

I think you should stay out of the tv comments because that is the dumbest thing i've ever seen you post.

RE: >.<
By Solandri on 10/31/2013 1:33:59 PM , Rating: 3
I did the plasma vs LED TV comparison last year for a company purchase. Plasma's contrast ratio and pixel response are fantastic, but it's dimmer than modern LED TVs. In fact this is probably the primary reason for its decline. People comparing TVs side-by-side at Best Buy see a bright TV (LED) and a dim one (plasma), and pick the bright one.

Plasma also burns a lot more electricity (usually 150+ Watts vs. 20-40 Watts for the newer LED sets). Those little Energy Star stickers with estimated annual cost to use do make a difference in people's buying decisions - $30-$50/yr vs less than $10/yr.

RE: >.<
By DFranch on 10/31/2013 2:12:37 PM , Rating: 2
I have to disagree. Plasma and LED have strength and weaknesses. Plasma has much better viewing angles and shows fast motion better (better for sports) and is best suited to a rooms which aren't brightly lit. LED uses less electricity works better in a brightly lit room. In my Family the viewing angles are important for me, and my room doesn't get much sun, so I prefer plasma. In my Living room, it gets much more light, and while I have the old plasma which was in my family room in there, I can see where a LCD would be better in there. Until OLED is ready for prime time, nothing compares to a good plasma.

RE: >.<
By probedb on 11/1/2013 8:21:02 AM , Rating: 2
LED is the type of backlight! They're still LCD TVs.

RE: >.<
By russki on 10/31/2013 10:58:04 AM , Rating: 2
I had a panasonic plasma and after 18 months it got screen burn in so bad I had to throw it away. Samsung doesnt have such problems.. about time they got out of the market.

RE: >.<
By FITCamaro on 10/31/2013 11:12:27 AM , Rating: 2
3+ years on mine and all it has is temporary ghost retention if I watch standard definition content on it without expanding the screen. Just get a bit of brighter area on the display when there's no picture until I watch something that is full screen.

RE: >.<
By Samus on 10/31/2013 1:42:18 PM , Rating: 2
I've gone to the same bank since 2005 or so. Every time I walk into the branch office, they have this old, 720p Panasonic Plasma running advertisements and promotions. I'm pretty sure they turn it off at night, but other than that, figure 12 hours a day for 8 years and no noticeable burn in.

Panasonic is one of those companies that has trouble competing in today's market because of their old-world values of quality and the 60's-70's Japanese "over-engineered" mentality, resulting in lower profit.

These are the business practices that crippled/killed JVC, TDK, Teac, Technics and so on. Because most of the world market values price over performance or quality, most common products are Chinese-built by the lowest bidder. Annoyingly, there are no Chinese (and few Taiwanese) companies that have the same standard of engineering as the Japanese [did].

RE: >.<
By MadMan007 on 11/3/2013 1:11:53 AM , Rating: 2
It was actually the Japanese asset bubble in the late 80's and the ensuing decades of economic stagnation that killed off the Japanese companies in the world market, some quickly and some slowly, although one could also argue that bubble also fueled their ability to make some very well engineered components. They still release the best stuff in their home market only.

RE: >.<
By Falacer on 10/31/2013 12:07:08 PM , Rating: 2
Our 42" Panasonic Plasma is going on 7 years now and still works very well. We watch a lot of sports and still have no screen burn in, no noticeable ghosting & the black levels are still real good. It was the grand prize in a holiday giveaway the 2nd year my wife worked for her current company.

Weekdays it doesn't get much use other than maybe 2-3 hours in the evening. Weekends it has always had very heavy use; especially during football season when it's on literally all weekend long.

RE: >.<
By The Von Matrices on 10/31/2013 12:07:45 PM , Rating: 2
I refute your claim; this is not exclusive to Panasonic.

I own a Samsung PN64D8000 64" plasma and it had severe burn in after only 8 months of normal use watching multiple channels of broadcast TV (it's not like I watched only one channel and its bug burned in).

I called to claim a warranty repair and Samsung was very helpful. They found that the "motherboard" was defective and was causing the burn in, so I had the "motherboard" and the panel replaced under warranty; essentially I got a new TV. 18 months later I have had no problems.

Maybe your TV is just one defective unit like mine was.

RE: >.<
By kmmatney on 10/31/2013 2:51:47 PM , Rating: 2
I guess I didn't do any research on that? My kids left an old game cube game paused over a weekend on cheap Vizio plasma. The burn-in was so bad you could read all the game text with the TV turned off. However the Vizio has a screen scrubber which moves white and grey bars back and forth across the screen. I just ran that for 2 hours, and all the burn-in was gone. I'm sure Panasonic has something similar. If not, there are burn-in "fix" videos you can run on the system.

RE: >.<
By Reclaimer77 on 10/31/13, Rating: 0
RE: >.<
By degobah77 on 10/31/2013 3:51:57 PM , Rating: 1
I know right, damn kids are ruining everything these days.

Oh, you meant the plasma...

Well just like any enthusiast market, the people who want it know the ins and outs and will baby it more than your average Walmart shopper who just wants the big, bright, cheap ass TV that turns on and off and shows them their sports shows even though all the blacks are purple and the color shifts every time you move your head....

By on 10/31/2013 12:40:19 PM , Rating: 1
If you can't see the VISUAL difference between a plasma TV and an LCD/ LED, then you don't deserve to comment on this thread.

Plasma offers a much smoother picture, with more contrast and an overall better experience than LCDs do. How can you call the soap opera effect that LCDs produce even remotely a high quality image? Maybe for just watching sports (or soap operas) thats fine, but movies are ruined completely. I've tried watching Blade Runner, The Matrix, Pulp Fiction...dozens of movies on LCD TVs, and its just horrible.

Panasonic is leaving the game because consumers on the whole are idiots. They have no eye for quality, and just want things that are a) cheap and b) pretty. Thinner TVs are pretty, regardless of whatever crap image the show you.

Plasma for life, or at least until Oleds are as cheap. :D

RE: Shhh
By jimbojimbo on 10/31/2013 1:21:34 PM , Rating: 2
I've tried watching Blade Runner, The Matrix, Pulp Fiction...dozens of movies on LCD TVs, and its just horrible
Um, just turn that off. I think I only watched a few minutes of anything like that since I turned it off right away.

RE: Shhh
By 91TTZ on 10/31/2013 2:32:10 PM , Rating: 2
What are you talking about?

RE: Shhh
By Reclaimer77 on 11/1/2013 7:25:20 AM , Rating: 3
He's talking about various smooth motion features of LCD's some manufacturers have added to simulate higher frame rates. They have nothing to do with LCD technology itself, and can be disabled in the menu.

RE: Shhh
By sorry dog on 11/4/2013 10:58:03 PM , Rating: 2
If you can't see the VISUAL difference between a plasma TV and an LCD/ LED, then you don't deserve to comment on this thread.

If I can't see the VISUAL difference then does that mean I can get a better deal on TV than you?

OR to put it this way... whether you spend 15k on 2 carats or 10k on a 1.5 carat, you're still gonna get the same blow job either way.... and if you don't then something else is the problem.

RE: Shhh
By TakinYourPoints on 10/31/2013 6:49:59 PM , Rating: 4
Pretty much.

If your room is incredibly bright (talking south and west-facing windows) with no curtains, get an LCD.

Otherwise there are just too many tradeoffs with LCDs that don't live up to the benefits of plasma. The added features of LCDs with local dimming and 120/240hz are band-aids to try and get to the level of plasma image quality, except that those also fall short because they introduce artifacts like halo effect, false edges, input lag, all while stil lacking plasma's color reproduction and costing more.

Other issues are strawmen that don't apply to modern plasmas. Heat and audio buzz are non-existent with current gen Panasonics. I've seen LCDs that give off more heat. Image retention can be an issue if you keep a very high contrast graphic on for a very long time but that goes away, plus its something that also affects LCDs so that isn't even a unique drawback. My Kuro has never had IR issues in five years, but its engineering/parts may be part of the reason why. Power is also a non-issue, we're talking about a $20-$30 difference over one year if you watch a LOT of TV.

During post-production I work in multi-million dollar color correction suites. Everything we look at is on pro-grade color calibrated plasmas and OLEDs. There is one single LCD that would be suitable for this kind of work, it is a custom 12-bit display that costs $40000 for a 42", which is double the price of a professional reference OLED monitor:

That price reflects the level of engineering required to overcome the inherent flaws of LCD technology when getting to reference quality.

The great thing is that you can get image quality close to pro grade for only about $1500 with the Panasonic ST60 series. Spend a few extra bucks on the VT or ZT series and you're in amazing shape.

RE: Shhh
By degobah77 on 10/31/2013 8:32:12 PM , Rating: 1
Careful, you might be voted down for speaking truths like this. The imbeciles are out in droves they all flock to Walmart and drive quality out of the market.

RE: Shhh
By integr8d on 11/1/2013 4:11:57 AM , Rating: 2
"During post-production I work in multi-million dollar color correction suites."

Hmmm. Which one?

RE: Shhh
By Reclaimer77 on 11/1/2013 11:24:10 AM , Rating: 2

RE: Shhh
By integr8d on 11/1/2013 1:59:19 PM , Rating: 2
Reclaimer, I wasn't talking about your dream job:)

RE: Shhh
By TakinYourPoints on 11/1/2013 5:23:19 PM , Rating: 2
Company 3, Incendio, A52, the usual suspects

RE: Shhh
By TakinYourPoints on 11/1/2013 5:30:52 PM , Rating: 2
Not sure if you're in the industry and that's why you asked. Of the old places that were shut down or absorbed into CO3 I also used to go to 525, Riot, and more recently New Hat.

RE: Shhh
By inperfectdarkness on 11/1/2013 6:53:03 AM , Rating: 2
Are you surprised by this? These are the same people who continue to re-elect the same impotent, bi-partisan, self-interested hacks in Washington. Stupidity knows no bounds.

Perhaps their own fault?
By HoosierEngineer5 on 10/31/2013 11:08:59 AM , Rating: 2
Back when I bought my plasma, Panasonic was pretty well known for advertizing an extremely good initial black level which would deteriorate over time. It didn't seem they had a handle on the situation, and were trying to cover it up, so I went with a Samsung.

RE: Perhaps their own fault?
By hubb1e on 10/31/2013 2:53:24 PM , Rating: 2
I got one of those sets. A Panasonic VT10. The black levels on my 65" VT10 were excellent out of the box, but have gotten worse over time. Since then I have gotten an 85" Samsung LCD as my main display and the black levels on that LCD are similar (though the LCD has bright and dark spots). The picture on my Plasma is still excellent, but the blacks aren't great anymore and that's a bummer because it's in my light controlled basement now. I'm holding out for OLED, or actually might be happier with a front projector in the basement and just use the existing VT10 Panasonic behind a retractable front projector screen for when we want to watch TV in the basement but don't want the lights out.

RE: Perhaps their own fault?
By ChronoReverse on 10/31/2013 3:07:22 PM , Rating: 2
That was a problem with that series of Panasonic plasmas and not an inherent flaw of plasma technology. Still sucks for you though and I don't think Panasonic has issued a fix for it =(

RE: Perhaps their own fault?
By degobah77 on 10/31/2013 3:56:06 PM , Rating: 2
There's a fix for it on the AVS site. It's pretty involved but someone was thinking about making a plug and play device that resets your blacks to out of the box levels every couple of months or so.

RE: Perhaps their own fault?
By SeeManRun on 10/31/2013 5:11:21 PM , Rating: 2
What are the specific reasons for shelling out all that cash for a huge LCD instead of going with a nice high end projector?

Dejavu, All Over Again
By vadertime on 10/31/2013 12:26:43 PM , Rating: 2
Back in the late 1980s, the first laptops came out with monochrome, plasma displays. These lasted a little over 5 years, before LCD screens replaced them. It took a lot longer for LCD TV's to replace Plasma TV's. Up to about 5 years ago, Plasma had all the advantages in size, brightness, clarity and contrasts, including the color black, which was pretty much lacking in LCDs. Fast forward 5 years and Sharp is making 70+ inch LCDs, Samsung is making 4K, super high-def TVs everybody else is making LCD TV's for pocket change. I just bought a Spectre 24", 1080P, LCD TV for my daughter's bedroom for 129.00. It has an incredibly sharp and bright picture and can also double as a 1920x1080 computer monitor. BTW, those of you that have smartphones, there was never a plasma screen smartphone. It was always LCDs. They are scalable and the cost of manufacturing continues to decline. It's all economics, baby.

RE: Dejavu, All Over Again
By Makaveli on 10/31/2013 9:40:37 PM , Rating: 2
No one is saying those economics aren't a reality.

We are saying to the people that are posting here that Plasma still provide a higher quality picture than an LCD/LED is it Fact!!

When you compare the highest end Consumer LCD/LEDs models to the highend current plasma there is no contest.

And if you cannot see that you need to get your eyes checked its obvious to anyone with normal vision.

And those statements that LCD's blacks are good enough maybe for you sure but for anyone that cares about image quality they will not settle for it.

I prefer LCD over Plasma
By Hulk on 11/1/2013 8:50:06 AM , Rating: 3
I don't understand why some people can't understand that everybody isn't like them and that to a large extent picture quality is subjective.

I am a discriminating shopper and I simply prefer a good quality direct lit LCD with local dimming to a plasma. The picture looks sharper, brighter, and the colors look better to my eyes.

If you like plasma that's fine I won't try and tell you that you don't know what "good" is or whatever.

The market place decides what survives and what does not.

By Mint on 10/31/2013 10:02:30 PM , Rating: 2
Plasma is much more technically difficult to make 4k than LCD, and even if they figure it out, plasma is probably never compete in price at that res.

4k is where all the margins are going to come from in high end TVs for the next decade. Unfortunately, people don't appreciate the deep blacks of Plasma, likely because it's the job of the showroom to hide that flaw of LCDs when selling them. 4k is easier to see on a demo loop.

4k screens next up
By KOOLTIME on 11/1/2013 2:09:58 AM , Rating: 2
plasma cant get near the 4k realm, due to some inherent limitations, unlike LCD tech is pushing forward towards.

Same thing with FLOPPY/CD/DVD/Blue Ray all of those are going away as well. It will all be flash based storage and cloud
streaming soon.

"And boy have we patented it!" -- Steve Jobs, Macworld 2007
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