Watching TV this morning (Panasonic THD-42PWD6UY 42" plasma), an odd thing happened. The picture suddenly went blank and the power light (green when lit, red in standby) was flashing red. Attempting to turn it back on via remote control. I cycled power from the front (remote goes in and out of standby while the front panel actually turns it off) and nothing happened. Finally, I left it off for 20 seconds, turned it on and everything was back to normal. 10 minutes later it happened again. And then again.
So I'm contemplating that my plasma has failed and I'll be fighting for a warranty replacement. A visit to my toolkit proved me wrong. Using a simple circuit tester showed that the outlet was ungrounded, along with the other three outlets on the string. The power strip also indicated not grounded (although it only flickers elsewhere in the house that the tester says is grounded). An extension cord from another outlet solved the problem. Apparently the Panasonic plasma automatically shuts itself off if it detects an electrically unsafe condition and starts flashing the red standby light.
So I'm buying a Ideal 61-155 SureTest Circuit Analyzer from mytoolstore.com. I haven't experienced their service but they have a great selection of high-end and specialty tools at very good prices. I've wanted to buy a high-end analyzer for a while so this was the perfect excuse. It's unclear what it will tell me -- I'm hoping one of the outlets will read differently (and need replacing). Or I can troubleshoot at the breaker panel. Otherwise its down to the crawlspace (difficult in the depths of winter) to take apart the electrical junction for the string of outlets. Probably corroded or nibbled by critters.
Just a contribution to googlespace. Couldn't find anything similar.
Edit: About 2-3% of all Panasonic plasmas manufactured between June and August have this problem. It has to do with an out of spec component in the power supply. It's exhaustively documented on avsforum though Panasonic has not acknowledged it publicly or with a service bulletin. It's amazing how big 2-3% of people can sound when they're perturbed and have all gathered in a specialist community -- sounds more like 80% (which would be ten thousand posts instead of several hundred). I'm wishing I hadn't bought the broadcast model now -- warranty requires delivery to a service center.