I think the black levels on modern IPS panels have improved. I was impressed with the black level on the Sony KDL-55W802A when I configured it in the store. You just have to use the right settings IMO.
Yesterday, I read that the Panasonics use IPS-ALPHA technology, which can get brighter than the IPS LG technology in the Sony. So after this awesome discovery, I looked the Panasonics up online yesterday. To my disappointment, the TC-L47 (was it ST60 or VT60) might have fit on my bottom shelf if I was able to find a lower-profile stand, but its price is nearly double the Sony KDL-47W802A. Panasonic's other two 47 inch models might have been more affordable, but they would be too wide for me to place my two front speakers on each side. So I was thinking of going with the TC-L42S60 because of the IPS-ALPHA technology, but then I remembered that with the combination of my sight impairment and wanting others to be able to view it from around the room, I really need to fit as large a viewing area on my shelf as possible. So far, the Sony KDL-47W802A is the only panel with a 47 inch viewing area that will accomidate my height and width. I'm hoping that I'll be able to get the Sony W802 series as bright as I got it the first time I checked it out. I guess I'll have to make sure that the power saver, auto light senser,, Scene Select Sync, and the auto light limiter are disabled, set Scene Select to General, and make my preferred settings, including fooling with the dynamic range under Pro.