bulbs/lamps do certainly have varialbe lifespans. unfortunately you are on the short end of the average 2X so far...... the lamp warning light comes on at 4000 hours. My salesman never mention needing to change a lamp although mits claimed it was a requirement to sell their sets, i was alot less informed before I purchased the set. i bought a 62525 in feb 2005 for $3600. had first lamp go out in summer 2006 but it had almost 9000 hours on it, well over average. Still complained to Mits and they lowered the lamp price to $200 and sent me a $75 refund check "customer appreciation" so final lamp cost was $125 for my first lamp out of warranty. About time to get another spare lamp. It does need an internal cleaning at least twice a year because of the dirty mirror issue. I don't need this kind of maintenence either and next display will be a plasma, sealed, no lamps and 60,000 hours till half brightness.