Just got back from the shootout. After having watched it lat night on the net, I can say that you cannot appreciate how close these displays were in many categories, I will say that it's Samsung that is on the right track and is the revolutionary display. Even the Panasonic rep said they have met about what Samsung did. I they get those black levels down a little lower and Panny does nothing much, game over.
My observations are pretty close to Ken's. The darkest in light was the ZT60. Asa matter of fact from where I sat it looked quite a bit darker than the rest. D-nice said that was because of the filter. Both Panasonics were a little darker, visibly in the black level test, but we are talking a small amount. The best filter was the ZT60 followed by the 8500, then the VT60. Colors were right n for bot, the difference being that the 8500 was brighter so the colors looked maybe less saturated. I think what they all said was true this one is just up to what you are looking for and not the deficiencies of the panels or quality. If you need the extra output the Samsung is great and can hang close with the Panasonics in dark levels. If all you need is dimly lit viewing and thus want the darkest black levels, the Panasonics are for you. The only thing I will say is the ZT, is not all of that. With this total new manufacturing process, the visual and measured difference is practically nil.
The only thing is none of them quite knocked off the Kuro.The Kuro's colors are just as accurate if not more so, can get brighter than the Panasonics and yet has a better black level than them too. I am even more confused now as to what I am going to do......they were that close.