Sunday, June 14, 2009

Digital TV Changeover

I wonder how many people need to replace Panasonic digital TVs today. I ask because I have one and it almost got thrown out the window yesterday. I'll bet I wasn't the only one.

On the day of the digital TV changeover, three Twin Cities stations changed their underlying frequencies, so I had dead air on those channels. A rescan of channels was called for.

The rescan added the channels that moved but didn't delete the old ones, illustrated by scrolling up the dial and having an extra blank screen in between the functioning channels. After half an hour I was able to delete the ghosts for channels 45 and 9, but channel 5 and its secondary channel were being stubbborn. During the following hour and a half, much frustration ensued.

Now, I'm a gadget geek, have a degree in Computer Science and I read the manual carefully (despite my guy reflexes not to). If I can't figure out something like how to add and delete a channel on a Panasonic TV, then something's wrong with the design.

Long story short, I had to reset all the settings for the TV in order to clear out the old channels. Here's the stupid part. In order to reset, you have to create a PIN. Security for selecting the language, the antenna in and channel settings? Are you kidding? So anyone reading this, presumably just friends and family, the next time you're at my house (and why haven't you visited recently?) and want to reset my TV, the PIN is 0000. Be my guest.

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