Can't comment on the Panasonic set but ... what about this one: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...82E16889253165
Fits at least into your price tag
Edit: Out of curiosity I've looked a bit more around and found the following:
Toshiba and Samsung are among the manufacturers I'd consider serious contenders to Sony, Phillips and Panasonic. In the end best is if there is a place where you can see all sets in action and compare for yourself.