Samsung Electronics Co., Ltd. Complaint - Samsung Plasma Screen Burn
CHICAGO, ILLINOIS -- In September 2006 I purchased Samsung 42" Plasma television model # HPS4253. In March 2007 through no fault of my own, it developed screen burn. I purchased the product because it was represented to me as having screen burn technology. Without getting too technical, when you go from wide screen 16:9 ratio to 4:3 ratios you get sidebars. Sidebars can cause screen burn. Commercials are normally broadcast in 4:3, and are a cause of screen burn. Other things that can cause screen burn are news tickers, station logos, paused dvds, etc…. Any type of stationery imaging can burn your screen. Depending on who you talk to, the opinions on just how long it takes a stationary image to cause screen burn is quite varied. The retailer I talked to, Best Buy indicated it could take 30 to 50 hours before this can occur. Samsung offers a different version. They recommend that no more than 5% of your viewing is done in a 4:3 viewing format. How do you do that if you are watching a wide screen channels (ie., HD channel) and most of the commercials (broadcast in 4:3) are not in wide screen? Assuming there are 15 minutes of commercials for every 60 minutes of viewing, you are subjecting your television to 25% of the time in 4:3 viewing. Based on my phone call with Samsung technical support, they say change the channel when 4:3 comes on (not a reasonable way to prevent screen burn). When I called Best Buy they said I should play the Finding Nemo DVD for 3 or 4 days straight (again another not so helpful suggestion for a $1,600 television). Make sure you understand about cable boxes and HD televisions. The television and cable box (Comcast) are set up to stretch 4:3 DIGITAL signals However this does not happen on the higher level channels that are set up for HIGH DEFINITION (they continue to broadcast 4:3 commercials with side bars). The Samsung plasma TV I bought is not able to handle some of today's broadcast formats in my opinion, and should not have burned so easily. Before you buy plasma - ask about screen burn, get it in writing that it is covered or avoid making the purchase. Samsung tech support considers screen burn a result of "customer abuse" and does not offer any assistance. I would not recommend Samsung plasma model # HPS4253 to anyone, and personally I plan to avoid their televisions completely. Best Buy is no better but I will not get into that. If you are buying plasma ask about screen burn and make sure you know what you are getting into. I am out $1,600 in six months and need a new television despite a Samsung warranty and a Best Buy extended warranty. Buyers beware with Samsung Plasma Televisions! Samsung should stand behind their products and provide friendlier customer service. They need to manufacture a TV that can handle a higher percent of broadcasts in non 16:9 formats, without risking screen burn. They need to offer more clearly stated assistance to customers ie. How to break in your new plasma television. Maybe some Samsung models are working well but mine is not. Every television that comes off their assembly line can’t be perfect. They should accept the fact that "maybe" sometimes a lemon slips through. I did nothing wrong here and am VERY upset I lost $1,600 in six months. If you walked into a retailer and they said the plasma TV you are looking at can develop screen burn in a relatively short period of time, can not be fixed once it occurs, there is no protection for you if it does happen, and if it does you are considered at fault. Just how many of these televisions do you think they would sell?