capsule review

Norcent PT-4291HD

At a Glance
  • Norcent PT-4291HD Plasma Television

    TechHive Rating

    This budget model offers pleasing image quality in a simple, easy-to-use design--but others offer more for the same money.

Norcent's new 42-inch PT-4291HD may not be the HDTV of anyone's dreams, but it could represent an acceptable compromise. This plasma, which has neither the lowest price nor the most impressive performance, delivers better image quality than some less expensive models. Its real rivals aren't the other budget models, but older high-end models that have undergone price reduction.

When we put the PT-4291HD through its paces in the PC World Test Center, our jury reached a mixed verdict. It did well on our standard-definition TV tests, garnering praise for its vivid colors and smooth edges. But even on these tests, some jurors found the picture a little soft. This complaint became a greater concern with regard to DVD and high-definition TV content, where the softness made the images look fuzzy or pixelated. In addition, many jurors found the color defaults undesirably skewed toward pink for HD content. Still, we generally found this set watchable, especially compared to other budget models. It matched the performance score of the $1400 Vizio P42HDTV overall, and it earned a better performance rating than the $1500 AOC A42HD84. In fact, the only less expensive 42-inch plasma we've tested recently that achieved better performance isn't a TV at all, but Maxent's retested MX-42HPM20 high-def monitor.

Laura Blackwell

This story, "Norcent PT-4291HD" was originally published by PCWorld.

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At a Glance
  • TechHive Rating

    This budget model offers pleasing image quality in a simple, easy-to-use design--but others offer more for the same money.

    Pros

    • Generally decent image quality

    Cons

    • Other TVs offer more for the same money
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