Is getting a panel with a handful of dead pixels still the norm? I'm about to buy another Panasonic plasma, my last being in 2009. Some of you might remember me.
Back in 2009, I went through two Panasonic 46PZ85Us before finally settling with the third, a 46PZ800u. My girlfriend thought I was crazy. There I was standing in front of our new plasma (inches away like a creep) watching slides of solid colors flicker through gradations, picking out pixels "stuck" on primary colors during the white screens, or stuck on blue/dark during the red slides. I literally had a migraine the next morning, and looking back on it now it's very comical to picture me sitting on the couch watching a pixel flickering DVD hoping the pixels would unstick themselves while I sat there with a headache watching this crazy pixel flickering program.
Could I actually see those dead pixels while watching TV? Hell no. Was I upset knowing that it wasn't absolutely perfect? Yes for some reason.
It became laughable - taking the time off work, my coworkers knowing I was about to go through another "exam". Finally, on the third set, it became so superstitious (I had heard everything: "don't turn it on at first because of the temperature change from the truck") I had my delivery guy put on my provided latex gloves before gripping the screen to put it on the stand, and after they left, I just sat there, staring at the TV, still not turned on. At this early stage of the third set, this was the best it was going to get. Once the set was turned on, that's when the inevitable dead pixels would be seen and my anxious obsession would set it. So I celebrated by opening a can of beer, and just stared, at my beautiful new set, which was perfect, because I refused to turn it on!
When I finally turned it on, it too did have some dead pixels. But this time, all the dead pixels were literally on the very bottom horizontal row. It was impossible to look at the bottom row of pixels and watch content on the display, so I said "forget it, I'm not returning a third set and awaiting a fourth tv because this is INSANE". In the end, I'm glad I swapped out the first two, because in the time to get to the third set, the price came down on the flagship model, so I got a single-pane of glass and a THX mode out of the deal (and a free blu-ray player was a bundled deal of the month or something with that particular set) -- but having said that, I'm not sure if I'm willing to deal with the embarrassment of seeing the same delivery guy with the look on his face of "hear we go again" (he not only delivered the sets, but also had to come to pick each one up before the next could even be sent out to me), the apologizing to my boss for his understanding of me leaving work early again, my friends cackling at the hysteria of the situation, the weeks without a TV, and the actual migraine headaches.
So what am I to do? The wiser person in me knows I should expect a handful of pixels to be dead when there's over 2 MILLION of them on the panel. The idiot in me is going to say "put in the JPEG SD card of the solid colors slideshow and find the dead pixels". It's like daring myself as a child to do something very dangerous, because it feels awful! Anybody relate to this nonsense?
I think I'm going to just watch it as I normally would, and if I don't notice anything, then that's fine. One saying a coworker said about this situation back in '09 still sticks with me: "If you go looking for trouble, you're going to find it."