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Guest Message by DevFuse

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Warning: Panny Plasmas have loose screws


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48 replies to this topic

#1 OFFLINE   Rich

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Posted 08 August 2012 - 11:30 AM

The new 60" TC-P60ST30 I bought last December began buzzing a couple weeks ago. I called Panny support and got my problem resolved today. The buzzing seemed to be coming from the (as you face the screen) left upper side and was really loud when I leaned over the set.

When I called Panny Concierge service, the CSR immediately made an appointment with a local electronics repair shop and told me they would have the proper part. Asked her how they would know, and she just said, "They will".

OK, that intrigued me, I've always found it very difficult to troubleshoot over a phone and figured I'd be in for a nightmare. Find the bad part, order it, wait a couple weeks or months for the part, get it installed and hope the guy guessed right. That did not happen.

The Tech (note the capitalization, this guy knew his stuff) walked in the door with a helper and asked me where the set was. Didn't ask me what was wrong with it. Now I'm really puzzled.

So, they turn the set around and take the back cover off (don't do this without gloves on, the edges are razor sharp and the Tech had been severely cut on a couple occasions which resulted in emergency room visits) and explain to me that one of the boards was installed without lock-washers on the screws. Screws get loose, board vibrates. Makes sense. They put lock-washers on the screws and put the set back together and...silence.

Turns out, this is very common on the TC-P60ST-30s. So common that the Tech's shop gets several calls a week for the same buzzing issue.

If you have one of the sets or the 65" model, you might want to get this fixed before your manufacturer's warranty runs out. If you have one and haven't heard the buzzing yet, it's just a matter of time. Whole repair took a half hour. That's counting BS time.

Rich

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#2 OFFLINE   kikkenit2

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Posted 08 August 2012 - 10:51 PM

Someone just posted a problem about the next year model ST50!
These are the top rated sets overall. Especially in 65". And I want one.
Not if they all break though.

#3 OFFLINE   MysteryMan

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Posted 09 August 2012 - 04:25 AM

Sounds like Panasonic needs to tighten up their quality control dept.

DirecTV customer since 1995.


#4 OFFLINE   Carl Spock

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Posted 09 August 2012 - 06:22 AM

I have sympathy with Panasonic on this one. First the sets are subject to a lot of vibration in shipping before they get to your living room. Second, a plasma runs very hot and as we all know, hot things expand, only to contract when they cool down. Yes, the design should have compensated for this but it didn't. The fix is cheap and quick. You really don't want me to start on my entropy is real rant again, do you?

I have a problem with my four year old Panasonic 50" plasma that has cropped up in the past month. Occasionally the picture gets all red. It's on all inputs and all channels. Only by hitting the back of of the set hard in the lower left corner will the image go back to normal. I'm pretty sure soon that fix-it won't work and I'll have to take the back off of the TV. Hopefully I'll find a loose connection or a loose screw. If I'm lucky it's that simple. A bad solder connection could take much longer to troubleshoot.
hangin' with the bros at 40 Eridani A

#5 OFFLINE   MysteryMan

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Posted 09 August 2012 - 06:41 AM

Given the price tag that accompanies the purchase of a LCD or Plasma the highest quality assurance should be expected.

DirecTV customer since 1995.


#6 OFFLINE   Carl Spock

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Posted 09 August 2012 - 07:14 AM

Reliability and price are not always synonymous. Ask a Ferrari owner.

There is a way in which reliability and price are tied together. You want a more reliable plasma? Take the price back up to $4,000. Spend the money on better components. When the price of plasmas dropped to where it is now, something had to go away. It had to be the quality of construction and materials that goes in the box. You don't get those kind of savings just by ramping up production. You get them by pinching pennies.
hangin' with the bros at 40 Eridani A

#7 OFFLINE   Rich

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Posted 09 August 2012 - 08:20 AM

Someone just posted a problem about the next year model ST50!
These are the top rated sets overall. Especially in 65". And I want one.
Not if they all break though.


Since I bought my first Panny plasma in '07, I've had noise problems with two of them. The first one I bought at Costco and returned it, this one I had fixed. So, in total, I've had nine Panny plasmas and had problems with two of them. Not a good batting average and not a good track record, but the Tech who was here yesterday did say that the Panny plasmas are the best TVs he's seen and have the least problems. Best I've seen or I wouldn't have bought so many.

Rich

#8 OFFLINE   Rich

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Posted 09 August 2012 - 08:22 AM

Sounds like Panasonic needs to tighten up their quality control dept.


Yup, sounds like something Samsung would do. Just lock washers, not something that isn't available in just about every supply house in the world.

Rich

#9 OFFLINE   Rich

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Posted 09 August 2012 - 08:24 AM

I have sympathy with Panasonic on this one. First the sets are subject to a lot of vibration in shipping before they get to your living room. Second, a plasma runs very hot and as we all know, hot things expand, only to contract when they cool down. Yes, the design should have compensated for this but it didn't. The fix is cheap and quick. You really don't want me to start on my entropy is real rant again, do you?

I have a problem with my four year old Panasonic 50" plasma that has cropped up in the past month. Occasionally the picture gets all red. It's on all inputs and all channels. Only by hitting the back of of the set hard in the lower left corner will the image go back to normal. I'm pretty sure soon that fix-it won't work and I'll have to take the back off of the TV. Hopefully I'll find a loose connection or a loose screw. If I'm lucky it's that simple. A bad solder connection could take much longer to troubleshoot.


Don't forget my warning about taking off the back panel, that thing is razor sharp. Wear heavy gloves when handling it.

Rich

#10 OFFLINE   Rich

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Posted 09 August 2012 - 08:27 AM

Given the price tag that accompanies the purchase of a LCD or Plasma the highest quality assurance should be expected.


In an ideal world, that expectation would be taken for granted. But, lock washers? That's a bit much and it seems as if they left them off the whole run of that model. Add that to the razor sharp edges on the back panel and...I don't know what to think.

Rich

#11 OFFLINE   Carl Spock

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Posted 09 August 2012 - 08:43 AM

Don't forget my warning about taking off the back panel, that thing is razor sharp. Wear heavy gloves when handling it.

Rich

Thanks for the warning. I will be careful.

Hopefully I won't have to do this for a while. I like slugging my plasma to get it working again. It reminds me of when I had a RF modulator on a 1980s era Sony projection TV. It sat on the floor next to the commode which contained the three guns. The modulator had a bad solder joint and would go kaflooey every few days. For years I kicked it to restore the picture. Do you know the joy of kicking a piece of electronics to make it work? It was very satisfying.

:kickbutt:
hangin' with the bros at 40 Eridani A

#12 OFFLINE   MysteryMan

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Posted 09 August 2012 - 08:43 AM

In an ideal world, that expectation would be taken for granted. But, lock washers? That's a bit much and it seems as if they left them off the whole run of that model. Add that to the razor sharp edges on the back panel and...I don't know what to think.

Rich


Must be new management. There's always a breed that comes along and penny pinches at the cost of quality in order to save a buck.

DirecTV customer since 1995.


#13 OFFLINE   Carl Spock

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Posted 09 August 2012 - 08:58 AM

No doubt about that, MysteryMan.

My point upthread is that pennies needed to be pinched to get the prices for plasma TVs down to the current level but in this case, Panasonic pinched the wrong ones. Let's assume they left them off more than just this one model and that a million plasmas were sold worldwide with this problem. Let's also assume there could be a total of 20 lock washers inside the plasma if they put them everywhere they might be needed. We need to come up with a price for the lock washers but buying them in huge quanties could take their price down to practically nothing - maybe a tenth of a cent. If you work out the math, this change saved Panasonic $20,000. I can guarantee you Panasonic lost money on that deal. With normal warranty repair reimbursement rates to the local tech, they'd have to fix only about 300 TVs to be in the hole over leaving off the lock washers. Certainly this was a very bad decision. An understandable one from my point of view but still a bad one.
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#14 OFFLINE   Rich

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Posted 09 August 2012 - 09:58 AM

Thanks for the warning. I will be careful.

Hopefully I won't have to do this for a while. I like slugging my plasma to get it working again. It reminds me of when I had a RF modulator on a 1980s era Sony projection TV. It sat on the floor next to the commode which contained the three guns. The modulator had a bad solder joint and would go kaflooey every few days. For years I kicked it to restore the picture. Do you know the joy of kicking a piece of electronics to make it work? It was very satisfying.

:kickbutt:


Yes, indeed. Having gotten our first TV in 1948, I've spent a lot of time kicking them. I got a pretty good look at the back of the new plasma while they were working on it and it looks like you could just swap boards without too much trouble. That doesn't mean your older plasmas, or mine, would be that easy to fix.

That back panel is really too sharp. I have a hard time believing that they could/would make such a dangerous part. Found out Panasonic has a production facility in Secaucus, NJ.

Rich

#15 OFFLINE   Rich

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Posted 09 August 2012 - 10:00 AM

No doubt about that, MysteryMan.

My point upthread is that pennies needed to be pinched to get the prices for plasma TVs down to the current level but in this case, Panasonic pinched the wrong ones. Let's assume they left them off more than just this one model and that a million plasmas were sold worldwide with this problem. Let's also assume there could be a total of 20 lock washers inside the plasma if they put them everywhere they might be needed. We need to come up with a price for the lock washers but buying them in huge quanties could take their price down to practically nothing - maybe a tenth of a cent. If you work out the math, this change saved Panasonic $20,000. I can guarantee you Panasonic lost money on that deal. With normal warranty repair reimbursement rates to the local tech, they'd have to fix only about 300 TVs to be in the hole over leaving off the lock washers. Certainly this was a very bad decision. An understandable one from my point of view but still a bad one.


That Tech and I had a conversation about that. He didn't understand it either. Lock-nuts?

Rich

#16 OFFLINE   satcrazy

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Posted 09 August 2012 - 12:03 PM

That Tech and I had a conversation about that. He didn't understand it either. Lock-nuts?

Rich


Rich, did you buy an extended warranty for your st30?

Panasonic sent me a notice about extended warranty,[ my st30] but this is NOT panasonic, it's third party, and it's not cheap. I called them awhile back to inquire, and they weren't sure who would repair it in my area.

Have you received anything like this yet?

The co. is on Panasonic's web site, by the way

#17 OFFLINE   Rich

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Posted 09 August 2012 - 01:24 PM

Rich, did you buy an extended warranty for your st30?

Panasonic sent me a notice about extended warranty,[ my st30] but this is NOT panasonic, it's third party, and it's not cheap. I called them awhile back to inquire, and they weren't sure who would repair it in my area.

Have you received anything like this yet?

The co. is on Panasonic's web site, by the way


No, I didn't buy an extended warranty, I always use my Amex card which doubles the manufacturer's warranty, so I'm good for another year +.

I get notices all the time for extended warranties and I ignore them. If this TV goes after the two year period, I'll be happy to buy a newer model. But it won't. The damn things apparently last forever. I've got five 720p Panny plasmas that I'd like to upgrade, but they just keep on playing.

Rich

#18 OFFLINE   Rich

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Posted 09 August 2012 - 01:26 PM

Rich, did you buy an extended warranty for your st30?

Panasonic sent me a notice about extended warranty,[ my st30] but this is NOT panasonic, it's third party, and it's not cheap. I called them awhile back to inquire, and they weren't sure who would repair it in my area.

Have you received anything like this yet?

The co. is on Panasonic's web site, by the way


Were I you, I'd be calling Panasonic's Concierge service and getting lock-nuts put on that board before it starts buzzing. Thing almost drove me nuts.

Short drive.

Rich

#19 OFFLINE   Steve

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Posted 09 August 2012 - 01:49 PM

Best I've seen or I wouldn't have bought so many.

Second only to my old Fujitsu, IMO, which sadly is no longer is in the plasma business. I never owned a Kuro, though I understand Panasonic bought that technology from Pioneer.

I've got three Panny plasmas and no issues, so far. They're 6, 5 and almost 3 years old. One sister's got three of them, and my other sister and mom each have one. No issues either. Knock on wood for all of them! :P
/steve

#20 OFFLINE   Carl Spock

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Posted 09 August 2012 - 02:19 PM

Were I you, I'd be calling Panasonic's Concierge service and getting lock-nuts put on that board before it starts buzzing. Thing almost drove me nuts.

It's certainly worth a phone call but unless there has been a recall, I've rarely seen a manufacture offer to fix something that isn't broken. It does happen, just not often. Realize that even though your TV developed the problem, Rich, along with the others fixed by the tech, the majority of sets haven't developed the buzz. These manufacturers didn't get wealthy by doing preventive maintenance.

On the plus side, since the repair is so quick, easy and not parts intensive, it would not be expensive to do out of warranty. You'd basically just have to pay an hour of bench time along with a couple of bucks for parts. That's a really reasonable repair for a plasma, which is generally many hundreds of dollars for a board replacement along with a couple of hundred dollars of labor. Expect to spend $5-700 in general to fix a plasma TV, and that's assuming the display itself is good. If that goes south, the TV is certainly junk.

For example, if my TV goes permanently red and I can't fix it, it is most likely toast. I certainly would explore a bit further the possibility of fixing it but my nearest service center is 150 miles away. Do I want to spend $80 in gas for two trips to the service center, plus whatever their estimate refusal charge is, probably around $100, just to find out it can't be fixed for a reasonable amount?

In that case, I'd probably just buy a new TV. I agree with Steve: it would probably be a new Panasonic. They have some new engineers from Pioneer that have brought some technology with them that seems to be quite good. I saw Panasonic's new 65" in a buddy's home and it looked tremendous.

Edited by Carl Spock, 09 August 2012 - 02:26 PM.

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