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Pioneer unveils its 2007 plasma HDTV lineup

Eight new flat-panel plasma TVs from Pioneer promise to deliver contrast ratios as high as 20,000:1.

Pioneer Elite PDP-6010FD
Pioneer's new plasma TVs boast the technology's best-ever black levels Pioneer

Gizmodo's got the early scoop on the new Pioneer plasmas. Early prototypes of these eighth-generation panels turned heads when they were originally on display at January's Consumer Electronics Show, and the company has finally supplied the pricing and availability details for the entire line:

Pioneer PDP-4280HD (42-inch, $2,700, June)
Pioneer PDP-5080HD (50-inch, $3,500, June)
Pioneer Elite PRO-950HD (42-inch, $3,200, July)
Pioneer Elite PRO-1150HD (50-inch, $4,500, July)

1080p models:
Pioneer PDP-5010FD (50-inch, $5,000, September)
Pioneer PDP-6010FD (60-inch, $6,500, September)
Pioneer Elite PRO-110FD (50-inch, $6,000, September)
Pioneer Elite PRO-150FD (60-inch, $7,500, September)

The big selling point that Pioneer is talking up on these models is the contrast ratio, which is said to be as high as 20,000:1 on some models. With flat-panel LCDs offering larger screen sizes, lower prices, and ever-better black levels (check out the Samsung LN-T4665F, for example), these new Pioneers are looking to raise the bar for plasma yet again. Senior Editor David Katzmaier--who's not easily impressed--suggested that the CES technology demons of the new plasma technology "evinced some of the deepest blacks" he'd seen yet in a flat-panel TV. And there's no denying that Pioneer has an impressive pedigree when it comes to plasma technology--its recent PRO-FHD1 and PDP-5070HD models are two of the three top-rated HDTVs on CNET Reviews. In other words, if you're a critical viewer who's in the market for a flat-panel TV, it's worth waiting a few weeks to see if the shipping versions of the new Pioneers deliver. (CNET will have full hands-on reviews as soon as samples are available.)

Read pricing and details of Pioneer's new plasmas (Gizmodo).

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