"Good TV, Crappy tech support"3.0 starson by gsmiller88
Pros: Beautiful plasma display, nice design, quality remote, tons of hook ups
Cons: Poor tech support, unable to receive HD programming through my cable
Summary: I bought this Panasonic a little over a week ago to put in the living room. I wasn't considering the brand when shopping around, but a new furniture store opened across the street from my work and this was the biggest TV they had in stock. The price was good ($1,399) and had free delivery so I figured what the heck, I was not going to be able to get a Panasonic TV this large no where else in town for that price.After contacting Panasonic again they responded to my inquiry and all my problems have since been sorted out. I would say this TV has a 4.5/5 star rating now after getting all the kinks worked out.
Upon delivery it was all set up for me so I didn't have any experience with the initial set up, but all they had to do was plug in the TV, turn it on, answer like two questions, and it was automatically broadcasting TV from my cable. I fiddled with the menu a little bit, setting the time and insuring that all channels had been added and everything checked out.
Now, my cable company doesn't offer any HD packages. The only channels that are broadcast in HD are the two local news stations, as well as PBS. On my Olevia and Sanyo HDTVs, their channel numbers are 5.1, 57.1, and 35.3, as like I said, they're not advertised as being offered. To go to them I type in the digits before the decimal point (or dash) and hit the dash button on the remote, then the remaining digit and the TV goes to them, but the Panasonic will not do this. Yes, it goes to the channel, but I either get "Not Available" or "Scrambled Program."
What does "Scrambled Program" mean?!
A look through the manual tells me nothing...
An internet search tells me nothing...
I was out of ideas, so I emailed Panasonic.
One..Two...Three....Four......FIVE days have gone by and I have still not received a response!
What's the deal!?
So needless to say, if I want to watch HDTV, I have to watch it on the Olevia in my bedroom.
I also got a Panasonic theater system to go with this (Model: SC-PT660). It connected no problem through HDMI and hasn't done so much as hiccup but there are still a fluke or two with the TV itself. Both products support what is called "Viera Link" which is supposed to give you flawless integration of Panasonic products that support "Viera Link." While it is nice only having to push one button on the TV remote to enable the sound system/DVD player, not everything is so flawless. Firstly, the TV remove will control the volume of the sound system, but I can't pause/stop/rewind/fast forward DVDs with the TV remote, I have to use the sound system remote. Then secondly, when I set the TV to have its audio to come from the theater system, when I turn the TV off it reverts back to using its built in speakers. Panasonic really needs to work on this feature a little bit more.
All in all, the picture of the TV is gorgeous and the sound is good (when coupled with a theater system it's great) but Panasonic's poor technical support will keep me from buying another Panasonic product.
Updated on Nov 2, 2008