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Panasonic Plasma Time Bombs?

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Guys, girls, whoever.

I heard about this issue about 9 months ago and paid no attention to it.

Well I haven't used my 2008 series Panasonic plasma (much) for about 6 months, but I just fired it up tonight to watch Jonah Hex (avoid it) and the movie was near unwatchable, it was the kind of picture I'd expect from an LCD. I played the same movie back on my Desktop PC monitor (Dell 2408) and the dark scenes were much better than my Panasonic, I can't even believe I'm typing that.

It is really, really bad - I was hoping it was just my eyes but it's just downright awful, is there anything I can do at all? I paid for an extended warranty but as it's over 2 years and with a 3'rd party company, I can't see it being a quick and easy process convincing them this is a major fault, especially considering the kind of retail service we get here, compared to say the states.

Comments, thoughts? I'm pretty pissed off.

EDIT: Just quickly glanced across the rest of this thread, image retention is also signficiantly worse on my TV than it was originally, much much worse. I'm not exaggerating when I saw that Dell LCD monitor was significantly better than my 50" Panasonic plasma :/ the vast majority of the movie I just watched was,... for all intents and purposes, unwatchable.

If anyone has Jonah Hex, check out the 32:30 mark - there's a scene in a cemerery which was ... AWFUL on my plasma, someone reaches over to the right to pick up a shovel in a fight, I couldn't see that at all on the plasma - no matter what I do to the brightness as well mind you - it's like the dynamic range (is that the term) has been significantly burnt through and wasted.

Edited by scottylans

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Guys, girls, whoever.

I heard about this issue about 9 months ago and paid no attention to it.

Well I haven't used my 2008 series Panasonic plasma (much) for about 6 months, but I just fired it up tonight to watch Jonah Hex (avoid it) and the movie was near unwatchable, it was the kind of picture I'd expect from an LCD. I played the same movie back on my Desktop PC monitor (Dell 2408) and the dark scenes were much better than my Panasonic, I can't even believe I'm typing that.

It is really, really bad - I was hoping it was just my eyes but it's just downright awful, is there anything I can do at all? I paid for an extended warranty but as it's over 2 years and with a 3'rd party company, I can't see it being a quick and easy process convincing them this is a major fault, especially considering the kind of retail service we get here, compared to say the states.

Comments, thoughts? I'm pretty pissed off.

scottylans,

Yours is a 50PX80 right? I remember your username when I was reading this forum and shopping for my 50PX80 back in 2008 :)

Anyway, same thing happened to mine with regards to black level. The last time I measured it it was at 0.14cd/m2 (up from 0.05cd/m2) at which point I sold the TV as it was unwatchable. The other issue I had with it was that the gamma levels on it are stuffed and cannot be fixed with calibration.

I think your only option at this stage would be to get a tech out and see what they say. Be prepared to be told it's "within spec" as they seem to love using that phrase :) Also might be worth checking your Brightness control isn't set too low in case it is crushing shadow details into black.

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Good memory, that's the model - I'd forgotten myself.

Does Panasonic even come out after this long? I got it mid 2008, it is genuinely unwatchable at this point if the movie is dark. No exaggeration here, it's just a mess of blackness.

I'm playing the movie through my PS3 - tried the 360 also, same thing.

EDIT: What kind of money would one expect to get for a 50" plasma? I'd assume it's 1000$ or less?

Edited by scottylans

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I've got the TH-65PZ850A and it is possible the brightness has increased since I bought it but the picture on it is still amazing! I've gone into the Service menu and tampered with the Cuts and the DRV for the colour but have reverted them back to the factory defaults as they seem to be the best without any professional calibration done. Brightness and contrast I have left them alone.

Does this model suffer from this "Time Bomb" issue? Manufactured October 2008. Mind you it was a display model in 2nds world and it had 700hrs on it when I bought it. Also bought an extra 4 years extended Warranty with a 3rd party, in case the thing breaks down.

I've checked my hours its done about 3,500hrs or so now.

I've also got the TH-42PV500A since October 2005 and the picture on this is still stunning! I'm still reluctant to replace it with a 42" Full HD version 42" or 50" even.

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I know this isn't a scientific test but I recommend you get a copy of Jonah Hex and check out the scenes I described - they are perfect to spot the problem. The entire movie was near pitch black for me.

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Does Panasonic even come out after this long? I got it mid 2008, it is genuinely unwatchable at this point if the movie is dark.

Panny will probably send someone out but if they deem it as "within spec" they might charge you for the callout. Some repair companies are more lenient than others though and may not charge you if they see something odd with the picture, even though it is still "within spec".

For instance my 2009 50S10 (which also had black level rise) had a faint line down the side of the screen. They came out free of charge but said it wasn't severe enough to warrant repair. I wasn't charged for the callout.

EDIT: What kind of money would one expect to get for a 50" plasma? I'd assume it's 1000$ or less?

Put it this way...50" 768p sets can be bought new for as little as $750.

I know this isn't a scientific test but I recommend you get a copy of Jonah Hex and check out the scenes I described - they are perfect to spot the problem. The entire movie was near pitch black for me.

Are you sure your brightness control isn't set too low? It almost sounds as if you are describing black crush.

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I fiddled with them with the scene paused for about 10 minutes, that shovel is simply not viewable, period. It's utterly gone.

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I fiddled with them with the scene paused for about 10 minutes, that shovel is simply not viewable, period. It's utterly gone.

So no matter how high you set the Brightness control, you can't see details in the dark area of the picture? If that is the case then I would say your set is faulty as even after black level rise the shadow detail was always visible.

There are free test patterns you can get here: AVSHD709. It has a good brightness pattern under Basic Settings which shows you the darkest few shades of grey. You should set Brightness so you can see the bars 17 and above. If you can't see them then there is definitely something wrong with your set.

The test patterns can be downloaded in mp4 and played on the xbox360.

Edited by pneu

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I'm playing the movie through my PS3 - tried the 360 also, same thing.

Actually this sounds like you might have the ps3 and 360 set to full or expanded RGB range. Try setting it to standard range under HDMI settings.

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Actually this sounds like you might have the ps3 and 360 set to full or expanded RGB range. Try setting it to standard range under HDMI settings.

Never paid much attention to the PS3 settngs, however I checked and I have mine set to full RGB range. Is this not a good thing, should this be set to standard??

I have no troubles with black levels on the Sammy PS63C7000 but if a change in the PS3 settings would make it even better??

Not meaning to hijack the tread, just sparked my interest.

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Never paid much attention to the PS3 settngs, however I checked and I have mine set to full RGB range. Is this not a good thing, should this be set to standard??

I have no troubles with black levels on the Sammy PS63C7000 but if a change in the PS3 settings would make it even better??

Not meaning to hijack the tread, just sparked my interest.

I set my PS3 to limited. Picture is brighter and more detailed as leaving it on FULL RGB picture is darker and alot of the detail is blackened out. This is on a Panasonic plasma so I'm not sure on other brands of TV.

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Never paid much attention to the PS3 settngs, however I checked and I have mine set to full RGB range. Is this not a good thing, should this be set to standard??

I have no troubles with black levels on the Sammy PS63C7000 but if a change in the PS3 settings would make it even better??

Not meaning to hijack the tread, just sparked my interest.

Yes, change it to the lower setting. You will get much better black levels.

Andys.

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Actually this sounds like you might have the ps3 and 360 set to full or expanded RGB range. Try setting it to standard range under HDMI settings.

Christ, what a difference. Do you want payment in sex or cash?

Thank god!

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Never paid much attention to the PS3 settngs, however I checked and I have mine set to full RGB range. Is this not a good thing, should this be set to standard??

Yeah it should be set to standard or normal or whatever the PS3 calls it. TV's use a smaller range of video signals (16-235) as opposed to PC monitors which use the full range (0-255). If you're using a PC monitor then you can use full range and get the benefit of those extra shades of colours, but on a TV if you use full range the TV will clip those bottom 16 shades and they will disappear into black.

Do you want payment in sex or cash?

:D

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Yeah it should be set to standard or normal or whatever the PS3 calls it. TV's use a smaller range of video signals (16-235) as opposed to PC monitors which use the full range (0-255). If you're using a PC monitor then you can use full range and get the benefit of those extra shades of colours, but on a TV if you use full range the TV will clip those bottom 16 shades and they will disappear into black.

:D

Great information there, much appreciated. So here are my video settings on the PS3 as they currently stand:

RGB Full Range : Limited (other option-Full)

y Pb/Cb Pr/Cr Super-White: Off (other option-On)

Deep Colour output: Auto (other option-Off)

Havent tested with a movie yet but does this sound ok or should I turn the Deep colour output to off?

Edited by jfbari

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Great information there, much appreciated. So here are my video settings on the PS3 as they currently stand:

RGB Full Range : Limited (other option-Full)

y Pb/Cb Pr/Cr Super-White: Off (other option-On)

Deep Colour output: Auto (other option-Off)

Havent tested with a movie yet but does this sound ok or should I turn the Deep colour output to off?

Looks good :)

Deep Colour is fine on Auto, it just means if any games use more than 8-bit colour they will be output correctly at the higher bit depth. Television and movies don't use more than 8-bit colour so it's not needed for those.

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Strange because RGB output set to FULL for me results in much better blacks. A RGB value of 16 simply gives me a dark grey on both the Pana plasma and my Epson TW4000.

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Another problem that Panasonic will, no doubt, deny is their fault ;)

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You MUST recalibrate the contrast and especially brightness on the TV when changing the input from PC levels (0-256) to video levels (16-235) and v-v.

Black level on the TV should ALWAYS be the same after readjustment no matter what input you use.

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Hi guys,

I bought a 50v10 about a year ago and about 3 months in the black levels definitely dropped. I remember watching Resident Hill when it happened and struggled to make out things in some of the darker scenes, and after that watching in a dark room was definitely very slightly but noticeably lighter.

But also from then on was a faint but noticeably lighter grey strip along the top and bottom about half an inch high. Will need to turn out the lights probably to make it out in this photo, I will try and take some better ones..

http://imageshack.us/photo/my-images/638/67257794.jpg/

Then on the weekend watched a boxing dvd and the lines ropes where visible though the fighters throughout the fight. And then watching fta a commercial with something in the middle on a blank lime green background it had lots of horizontal lines on it, this made my 2k top of the range 50v10 look like a $200 Aldi POS. I have read that is horizontal line bleed, but found it very difficult to replicate and never as severe as that to photograph. The dvd was very old though being the Muhammad Ali v George Frasier fight. Not sure if this is something which occurs over time or not, but I never noticed it before.

I would really appreciate any advice please on whether either of these are warranty faults? Another issue is my 1 year warranty runs out on Monday and the "product is found to be faulty within the warranty period" has me a bit worried. Not ideal but Dad has been extremely ill and I have been away from home for a month.

Thank you.

Cheers,

Lik

Edited by likwidsh0k

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