Optimal Settings for a Panasonic Plasma TV

by Amy Cox

Panasonic plasma televisions vary in size and price. Panasonic lists televisions from 42 to 65 inches, with prices ranging from less than $500 to almost $6,000. After purchasing a Panasonic TV, consumers must adjust the settings in order to experience optimal viewing. People can adjust the aspect ratio, picture settings, color management and brightness.

Aspect Ratio

According to CNET, "aspect ratio" is a term for "width to height ratio." High-definition programs use an aspect ratio of 16:9, while standard-definition programs use an aspect ratio of 4:3. An aspect ratio of 16:9 means the picture is 78 percent wider than tall. An aspect ratio of 4:3 means the picture is 33 percent wider than tall. When a show with an aspect ratio of 4:3 displays on a wide-screen TV, black bars appear on the right and left of the picture. To prevent this from occurring, set your aspect ratio to the "Just" mode. The "Just" mode works with high-definition and standard-definition programming. It stretches the picture horizontally without causing much distortion. To prevent image burn-in, Panasonic advises consumers to "break in" their plasma television sets for 100 days and keep their televisions in the "Just" mode during that time.

Picture Settings

According to the Plasma TV Buying Guide, cool temperatures make the color white look distorted on a plasma television. Set the temperature close to D6500K. The film industry uses the D6500K color temperature when converting film to DVD. By setting a TV to D6500K, users maintain the integrity of the film. To switch to this setting on a Panasonic plasma TV, put the picture on "Standard" and increase the color temperature to the "warm" setting.

Color Management

Panasonic plasma TVs use technology referred to as color management. According to Panasonic, color management enhances the green and blue colors. You cannot adjust color management; you can only turn it on or off. According to CNET, the color management setting causes problems with color decoding and should be turned off.

Brightness

Adjust the television's brightness, or black level. The brightness settings you need depend on the type of Panasonic Plasma TV you own. According to CNET, you can obtain the correct settings by using a DVD. Find a DVD with letterbox bars on the top and bottom of the picture. Letterbox bars show up as black bars on some wide-screen DVDs. Insert the DVD and go from scene to scene until you find one with an equal amount of dark and light parts, and a visible pair of eyes in the picture. Pause the DVD on that scene and begin calibration. Set your brightness lat its highest. The dark letterbox bands will appear gray. Decrease the brightness level. As you lower the brightness, the bands will lose their gray appearance and become black once again. At the same time, the picture's shadow detail will change. Continue lowering the brightness levels while focusing on the eyes in the picture. If the eyes disappear, you lowered the brightness level too much.

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About the Author

Based in Mississippi, Amy Cox has been writing on social, political, environmental, travel and technology topics since 2006. She has written for a variety of publications, including "The San Diego Gay and Lesbian News" and "Green Motorist." Cox studied English and creative writing at Western Illinois University.

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