Originally Posted by batpig
not true!! the rise in MLL is not due to the "gas getting older", it is due to IMPROPER VOLTAGES. If the voltage applied was correct, the MLL would stay the same. The aging gas requires a higher voltage level to "fire" but it does not inherently force the blacks to get grayer!
This has been confirmed by D-Nice among others and other plasmas (samsung, pio, etc) seem to NOT have this problem.This is why I think we need to collect a few links to posts providing good descriptions of the technical stuff.
Every few days this gets rehashed with a new round of theories and speculation, when these technical matters have already been generally explained and settled.
I apologize to go back more than a few pages, but I only check this thread every once in a while.
Here's the point I was making: Even though you can get 100% black regardless of the age of the gas by turning the pixel completely off (i.e., apply zero voltage), at some point, the reactivity of the gas will degrade, making SOME adaptive solution necessary over time to preserve the ability to render a dynamic image.
Thinking about what was posted from the Panasonic patent a few pages back, the idea of applying an increasing "rest state" voltage (i.e., black) eliminates the need to apply variable address voltages, this makes sense. The point isn't that you can't have ever lasting "true" blacks due to plasma gas characteristics. The point is that you would have to use higher address voltages if you cranked down the "black" voltage.
So if the whole set is built around the higher "black" voltage technology, it can probably be built with a lot less complicated hardware / software. This translates directly to lower cost, more competitive pricing, higher sales, and bigger profits.
I know my set cost a lot less than what a Kuro would have cost (if I could still have gotten one). Were the manufacturer's claims about the blacks misleading? Well, since this story has been "confirmed", I will tell you that the online retailer who sold me my set dropped the price by a whopping $13. So clearly the sets are worth less to some, but it's the minority of buyers and hard to imagine that there is really much difference as far as "misleading" the consumer between displaying the sets under a "showroom" environment/settings that eye pop vs. the way it will look when you actually get it home and set it up. As a trip to the diamond district will show you, you can't trust your eyes and showroom lighting when making a big purchase.
As for a lawsuit, I would be very wary of a class action. If you have a class action, it is basically controlled by the lawyers who can, for example, agree to settle the case in exchange for payment of their fees (which will be in the $100K range probably) and every member of the class (that's us) getting a coupon for $100 off another Panasonic product. LOL, in that situation, are you going to opt out and hire your own lawyer to recover $1000 on a TV set. Lawyer's billings rates at big firms are usually over $200/hr.
If you think about the claims of misrepresentation, they largely stem from "editorial" reviews and the like. If an agency like Moody's or S&P can be protected for overstating bond ratings that are in practice trading currency to the markets, do you really think that a THX certification is going to hold any water as a basis for misrepresentation. Very slim change IMHO.
This set of facts means that Panasonic is probably getting some aggressive legal advice in line with the foregoing, and are going to happily flip us off, because (A) the technology is these sets can't be adapted from high static black voltages to an address (Kuro?) voltage model... it can only delay the point at which the higher static voltage kicks in (how long we don't know - will it be another year, two? In five years the depreciated value of these sets will be zero anyway!) AND (B) because they have not technically crossed the line of the law.
I think in this situation, the best approach that owners of these sets can take is to actively circulate a petition, stating in solidarity that we will not buy another Panasonic product unless they agree to provide current owners of these "deficient" sets with vouchers for substantial discounts off of their next generation sets (which is what, at the end of the day, we would all probably get after a class action suit anyway).
If someone has already set up that kind of thing, it would be great to have it sticky-ed somewhere so people can find it without having to comb through the 200+ pages of this thread.