There’s been a recent stream of complaints about Panasonic TVs with suddenly increasing black levels. Panasonic has responded, but hasn’t cleared things up.
One of the main selling points of plasma TVs is the incredibly deep black levels they’re capable of. Recently though, older Panasonic sets have been seeing sharply changing black levels, and not for the better.
Panasonic responded to the complaints in an effort to explain the perceived effect, but the response left people wanting more. “Panasonic Viera plasma HDTVs incorporate an automatic control which adjusts an internal driving voltage at predetermined intervals of operational hours,” stated Panasonic. “As a result of this automatic voltage adjustment, background brightness will increase from its initial value.”
Customers are reporting dramatically different pictures, and black levels increasing two-fold or more. Pasonics response to the continued outrage was less than helpful. “Since the TVs work as designed, there's nothing to fix.” Panasonic also said that without an industry standard for judging black levels, comparing two sets was difficult.
The problem with the sets, and the response from Panasonic may lead some people to reconsider their purchases in the future.