Panasonic Viera TV ****-up

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Any recommendations for a good, solid, non-crazy TV NG?
I am royally pissed with the new 32" I bought through Amazon. My SMART neighbor helped me set it up. Yes, we have all the plugs in the right places.
I want to return it, but am afraid to check the cost w/post office, FedEx, etc.
Weird!!! Have to dance between #1. old remote from Verizon, and #2. new remote from Panasonic.
Here's what happened:
We were having trouble installing/receiving/channels on the Panasonic. So friend suggested bypassing the Verizon box ($15.99/mo rental) because the new TV has its own receiver.
Result:
#2. Panasonic remote; Will govern Volume and Mute, but does not have the handy Information button (tells you what's playing, e.g. with movies, date, subject, stars, etc.) ***Most important:*** Will NOT change channels or allow channel input with keys. We read through the manual umpty times, but never found a way to acquire channels. Can it be possible that one has to add channels one by one, for a total of 500+?
(BTW, The Panasonic remote looks and acts cheesy compared to the old remote.)
So we reinstalled the Verizon box:
Result:
#1 (Verizon Remote) will change stations as before, but will not govern Volume, Mute or a great function: instant taping while program is on (press the red button). These and some other functions are disabled.
I have tried to find answers on the Panasonic sites, but no luck as yet
So if anybody here has a clue, would like to hear from you.
And/or if anybody knows a reliable, no-nonsense NG where I could post my dilemma, please post.
1000 thanks!
HB
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Don't get pissed at your TV, get pissed at the neighbor. If you want to take advantage of what comes out of the wire from most any cable or sat company, you need their box. The TV receivers will get the OTA and maybe basic cable, but little else and they won't record shows for you.
Step one is to check the manual to see if you can just set everything back to factory settings. You can probably do that with the Verizon remote also.
Next is to set the TV input to the proper setting. You may be set up for OTA when you need to get the signal from the cable box. If you are using an HDMI cable, set it to HDMI1
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Ed Pawlowski wrote:

It's ok to be pissed at Panasonic or any other MatsuSHITa brand. They load products with all sorts of bells and whistles, but don't bother to actually test and debug them.
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You will probably have to re-program the cable remote to work with that model TV.
--
Jim Rusling
More or Less Retired
  Click to see the full signature.
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wrote:

This is the key. Your "Verizon remote" was programmed for your old TV. Every brand uses a different set of codes, often several sets of codes for one brand. Universal remotes, and remotes for other boxes (cable box, external tuner, etc) which also need to control the TV have to be programmed. This is usually done by pushing a sequence of buttons which includes a code number. Sometimes you can't even determine exactly which code set to use, and the instructions will tell you to try several until it works.
I have a TV-B-Gone, a device for powering off TV sets in waiting rooms without your action being noticed. It simply sends the "power" code for every brand of TV. ("Power" is always a single flip-flop code, not separate codes for on and off.) Though most TVs respond within 20 seconds, it takes about 90 seconds to go through all of them. This is just to give an idea of how varied the code sets are.
If the "Verizon remote" didn't come with instructions, try to look them up. If it has a manufacturer name on it, you might find instructions on their web site. You might find instructions on Verizon's web site. You might have to call Verizon. Who might (I'm guessing) have to send a tech to your house, because the person on the phone doesn't know and the techs don't take phone calls.

There aren't many functioning NGs left, and "reliable, no-nonsense" is contrary to Usenet principles.
Edward
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Edward has hit the nail more or less on the head. To repeat:

BTDT
Colbyt
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I'm not so sure. My cable remote and now the sat remote turn the TV off and on. Nothing more. All other functions are controlled by the box. That includes volume, channel changing, pause, record, etc. Yes, you do have to put the code for the off/on function, but that is all you need with the cable, FIOS, or Sat box.
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Every remote that I've used from Time Warner, DirecTV, Comcast, and now Bright House, would control the TV's volume.
I still have a remote control from TW that I kept from 1997? that will control the TV volume.
The bottom line is, people don't program the remotes properly.
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Call tech support monday they will walk you through it.
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I don't think it's you or the neighbor, or the Verizon box. I think it's the Panasonic brand TV. We purchased one last year. The Verizon remote will do everything, except it will not turn the TV power on/off or control the volume. We tried every permutation on the Verizon remote instructions to have the code accept the TV, called Verizon, and called Panasonic. They agreed that their TVs are not compatible with Verizon's remote, so I have been living with two remotes. I don't have a DVR on that TV so don't know if the Verizon record button would or would not work.
Sounds like you might have the same issue. If you call Panasonic, they'll probably confirm.
Meanwhile, I turn on/off the TV and control the volume with the Panasonic remote, and change channels and watch DVR programs (from the DVR on another TV) with the Verizon remote.
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Try RemoteCentral.com for info on remotes.
Your Panny remote knows nothing about your Verizon box, there are many different systems in use not only yours, you need to read if it can be programmed to operate the box. Your Verizon remote will need programming to operate your Panny TV, if it can. It would be simpler to use a good quality Universal Remote to operate both together. That is where RemoteCentral.com information comes in.

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Higgs Boson wrote:

Ordinarily, the cable box can't control the TV set's volume and the TV remote can't control the cable's channel selection Think of the impossibility of the buttons on the microwave controlling your living room lights or the dimmer switch heating your hummis.
You'll either need some method of reprogramming the TV to accept commands from the cable's remote, or invest about $8.00 in a "Universal" remote.
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All of the remotes for the various cable systems, and now Dish, that we've had control the volume on our TV set(s). Some even do the odd stuff on the TVs. ...wonders of modern electronics. ;-)

Impossibility? No, it's entirely possible. Don't know why you'd *want* to do it. Ever hear of X10? ;-)

It's a lot simpler to RTFM on the cable's remote.
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On Dec 5, 10:27am, " snipped-for-privacy@att.bizzzzzzzzzzzz"

This is to polite poster above: Is the Verizon Remote a "universal", programmed to match their box? I'm asking here because if you've ever had the experience of trying to contact Verizon -- well, just don't even TRY!

This is to impolite poster above: PLEASE! We are not idiots. We read through BOTH manuals -- Verizon's remote and Panasonic's manual (which had zip about the remote; not even a diagram).
HB
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This is to polite poster above: Is the Verizon Remote a "universal", programmed to match their box? I'm asking here because if you've ever had the experience of trying to contact Verizon -- well, just don't even TRY!

This is to impolite poster above: PLEASE! We are not idiots. We read through BOTH manuals -- Verizon's remote and Panasonic's manual (which had zip about the remote; not even a diagram).
HB
Higgs are you the OP in this thread?
I know nothing about the Verizon service.
I do know that the local cable company changed to an "all digital" signal source. A digital signal not compatiable with any TV. That effecticely blocked all TVs including the latest HDTVs from receiving a proper siganal from their source. If that is true in your case your only choice is to tune your TV to channel 3 or 4 and use their damn box if you want it to work.
After much trial and error and much gnashing of teeth I got everything working again including a seies one Tivo.
Colbyt
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On Dec 5, 10:27 am, " snipped-for-privacy@att.bizzzzzzzzzzzz" wrote:

<stuff snipped>

This is to polite poster above: Is the Verizon Remote a "universal", programmed to match their box? I'm asking here because if you've ever had the experience of trying to contact Verizon -- well, just don't even TRY!

This is to impolite poster above: PLEASE! We are not idiots. We read through BOTH manuals -- Verizon's remote and Panasonic's manual (which had zip about the remote; not even a diagram). =======================================================HB:
I've had similar, exasperating experiences. You can RTFM until the cows come home, but sometimes, this stuff just isn't as interoperable as it should be. FWIW, as extensible as X-10 is, it won't allow you to control much of anything with your microwave buttons.
X-10 does make an excellent and fairly cheap Universal remote that I use that has an excellent, bright screen that allows you to program meaningful names in configurations that make sense. It also allows you to chain them so that you can issue a whole serious of startup commands to activate the various components of your home theater system in sequence and even dim the lights, too.
For example you can have a screen setup to start up all your gear:
TV ON (get that warmed up) CATV ON DIM LITES (with the right X-10 add-on gear) RCVR ON
This method means you would press each button in sequence, which is sometimes important if you already have something on. Or you could lasso those separate steps into a one-key macro. I began reviewing one a year ago and I can't finish the damn review because I keep discovering new functions. Plus, it has all sorts of built in icons if you're into hieroglyphics and like to select channels by their logos. The icons are a cutsie thing whereas its ease of learning other remote signals is a "power feature" that's well executed.
It can learn and play back any IR signal I've thrown at it and has chaining and macro features as well. It can learn every key of your two separate remotes and assign them to almost any key on the remote. It's truly the "one remote" solution because it can learn more than 100 commands per remote, but also allows you to type in meaningful names in logical groups and chain things. Best of all, for an X-10 freak - it offers heretofore impossible to get in a handheld remote features via RF control. Philips makes a similar remote without the X-10 features that costs more (!!!!). Actually X-10 makes both and Philips rebadges theirs.
X-10 has a good return policy, so you can always return it within 30 days for a refund (they used to, better check on whether they still do!) I got one used from Ebay for $30 and the other (with an X-10 receiver that you need to get the X-10 part running) for $60. They're always having some sort of sale. Here's one:
http://www.x10.com/promotions/ir10a_em_ppt_4999_v2_burst_cat.html
for $50. I've found that while my Panny DVR remote controlled plenty of gear, it didn't control MY gear so I had to opt for a universal and I wanted one that could do learning, X-10 and could display the names of the programmed keys clearly. We've tried "remapping in our heads" but that's no damn good. Every function needs a label.
BTW, there is no such thing as a crazy-free newsgroup. Usenet is a craziness concentrator. Look at the tinning thread. The OP was long ago scared off. Usenet is where men go to lock antlers and do their seasonal rutting. Flame wars are much more prevalent in the spring and fall, at least by my reckoning. What's interesting is that men will lock horns even with very few females (or none) around to impress.
Good luck on your quest. I've actually found Panasonic to be relatively helpful although they'll gleefully advise you to reset your DVR to fix a clock problem without telling you that it will also obliterate hours of programming macro keys, timed recordings using the tiny remote keys and a keymap. Worse, still, some things that you can't program will not come back at ALL!!! Well maybe it didn't take hours to reprogram it, but it sure seems that way when you have to punch everything all over again because the clock runs fast. )-: Very, VERY poor design to always expect an analog clock signal to be present. /rant over
-- Bobby G.
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I have a toshiba that my direct tv remote can not turn on. It will control the toshiba's volume but won't turn it on and off. I've got a cheap 32 lcd tv, I forget the brand, that my direct tv remote can't control at all. The remotes that come with cable and satelite services just don't always handle every tv there is. Either you live with it or you buy a universal remote.
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It would seem that you don't have the DVR connected to the TV correctly. Is it regular digital DVR or an HD-DVR?

Sure it will. Mine works just fine.

Your basic/expanded cable has 500+ channels?????
Anyway, Menu>Setup>ANT/Cable Setup>Auto Program (simple)

Your opinion. I disagree. The remote has big buttons and is VERY user friendly.

Because you don't have the remote programed properly. Sounds like you have AUX on the remote programed for volume control (which would be used for a stereo receiver) and not TV.

Why are you looking at Panasonic sites when the problem is with the Verizon remote/DVR?
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Thanks to all who kindly weighed in on this. A lot of good advice. Some fellow-frustration. Several similar situations. Noted also agreement that the Panasonic under discussion has a lot of bells & whistles that I, for one, will never use.
I am probably going to return the set and look for something smaller. 32" is too big for the bedroom. Also -- IMPORTANT --since I'm most comfortable with the 4.3 ratio, why do I need all the stretching and zooming and big black spaces on each side of the screen?
My main-est reason for returning it is that it has no input for headphones. I need them to not disturb people elsewhere in the house.
In back of the set I saw an "audio output", but when I RTFM it seemed to address only Home Theatre. Is there an accessory that might connect to that audio output and culminate in, or be fastenable to, headphones? I figured that with many Panasonic owners on this thread, someone might know.
Or, in general, might know of sets that have headphone jacks. I saw one with a strange, Finnish-? sounding name, but it got bad reviews.
TIA for all the continuing help.
HB
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I don't think you are going to find anything in 4:3 and so much of the content is wide screen now that it would be silly to buy one even if you found it. I suggest you look at the list of tv's your verizon controller is supposed to work with if that's one of your requirements.
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