Could someone please enlighten me (no pun intended) whether this is confirmed to occur on the 2008 models? I have a TH-50PZ800 with around 1000 hours on it (purchased around Dec 31, 2008, up here in Canada), and I could swear over the past several months that the blacks look lighter than they used to, although I have no technical measurements from when new and now, only looking at it in a dark room, watching BSG blurays over the past few months, things just look too bright/grey. After noticing this I looked critically at a bunch of other stuff with dark scenes too thinking maybe the BSG discs were badly mastered, but, everything looks more grey now, and not as deep and dark as I recall it looking when the set was brand new (yes, subjective I know, please don't flame me for that).
So I did some googling, and ended up here. After reading a bunch of this thread, I sent a message complaining about suddenly noticed poor black levels and contrast to Panasonic Canada, and received the following response:
Thank you for your e-mail. Please be advised that we have not had any reports
of black levels increasing on our 2008 models. We recommend that you do a hard
reset of your TV, which will put the picture settings back to the factory defaults.
To do a hard reset on your TV: turn the TV on, press and hold both the Volume
Down on the front of the TV (not the remote) and Menu on the remote -
simultaneously - until you see Self Check on your TV display. If you do not see
Self Check then let go of the buttons and try it again. The TV is not reset until
Self Check is displayed. Once displayed, unplug the power, plug it back, do the
One-Time Set-up again.
So, I'd like to know now if I'm imagining it, or if Panasonic is outright lying to me.
The REAL Joe