I don't believe you're getting taken for a ride. It's quite possible the profit margin is greater for the 505mx than the 5060, but I do believe the 505mx has a few more bells and wistles than the 5060. I emailed Pioneer about the 505mx and to paraphrase, they said that they were going to ship the 505 to the U.S. to sell in retail stores, but decided not to. These are mostly shipped to retail stores in South America. Now, they were made available to online retailers, just not your Ciruit City and you Best Buy stores. The gal that emailed me from Pioneer wasn't sure why they didn't ship to the major retailors in the U.S. I'm making a guess that the 505mx is very close to the Elite Plasma line. The Elite comes equipped with this ISF C3 technology that the 5060 does not possess, but the 505mx does. Somehow, and I'm not sure how, but the plasmas with this Isf C3 tech can be tuned more precisely to your home environment using a computer and some special lenses. There's a retail store near me called Tweeter and they offer the service for $100 bucks. I beleive Best Buy has their Geeks to do the same thing, also for a price. Now, I understand the glass on the Elite series is thinner and less reflective than the 5060 glass and that the 505 has the same glass front as the more expensive Elite line.
The 5060 has a box that everything can plug into, the 505 does not, but who needs it if you're getting a High Def box from your cable company. Everything can plug into that. If you're using Dish, that may be a different story. The 505 does not come with speakers, but that's not a big deal if you're using a surround sound system, who needs the pioneer speakers????
There is a warranty issure with the 5060. If the store you're buying from is not a "authorized" Pioneer dealer, then Pioneer does not offer the one year warranty and you have to get one from the vendor. If the store or internet company is a dealer, than no problem with the first year warranty. I understand Pioneer stands by the one year warranty with the 505mx because it doesn't compete with the retail stores, which really is Pioneer's bread and butter and they try to protect their big retailers with the warranty threat.
So that's pretty much what I know, I'm not a internet saleman or techy guy, but I did recently purchase the 505mx and I should receive it next friday. Let's face it, the internet guys are slick salespeople, but if you look up the company's feedback, go with one that has a high customer satisfaction rating. I think you're always protected if you pay by credit card because the credit card companies back the consumer when there are disputes. I bought mine from pcvideoonline.com and their feedback was very positive. I wasn't sold any extended warranty stuff and they didn't push it like some other ones do.
Hope that was helpful. Let me know how yours works out.
I recently purchased a Pioneer 50" pdp-5060 from one of the vendors listed on cnet. After I purchased the tv a rep from the company called and offered to substitute the industrial model ( which I now know to be the 505mx) for the 5060 since I did not need a stand or speakers. He claimed it was the same television, but with a higher contrast and better brightness. I agreed, but I am now unsure if I am getting hosed. I'm having trouble finding information on the 505mx. Please help.