Let me say this first: Be very careful about claims of resolution in the plasma space. First of all, Philips’ 42PF9631D indeed has 1080 horizontal lines so that vertical scaling is not necessary for 1080p content (you can only get 1080p content if you upscale/de-interlace 1080i content or if your video source is a PC with 1080p content). But, as I said in the first sentence, the 42FP9631D, without any other gimics, will require some horizontal scaling because the pixel format on this 42″ plasma is only 1024*1080. On LCD TVs, DLP TVs, LCoS TVs, when you see 1080, you almost always get 1920*1080 pixel formats because when we are talking about HD content, we are talking about HD content in 16:9 aspect ratios.
The 42FP9631D actual does have a gimick that sidesteps the need to scale horizontally and it has a name: Alternate Lighting of Surfaces (ALiS). ALiS virtually doubles the number of vertical lines. Hmmm.
-42″ 16:9 aspect ratio by way of ALiS
-1400 cd/m2 brightness
-1024*1080 pixel format
I’ll give it to you straight: A 1024*1080 is an interim solution and soon enough, and without gimicks, true 1920*1080 pixel format plasma TVs will be available. I would skip these versions.