I found that since the Panasonic TH50PZ80U TV has only 2 HDMI ports on the back of the TV, the best solution for me was to use component (red, blue, green) cables to connect the Home Theatre to the TV. I suppose I/you could connect the home theatre to the HDMI port on the front panel, but I don't want cables hanging out the front of the TV (personal preference). Unfortunately, I am no longer able to use the VIERA Link functionality available by connecting all Panasonic components to each other using HDMI cables, but I feel it's a small price to pay for the incredible picture quality acheived by using the HDMI cable to connect the HD Cable Box to the TV. I may yet be able to control everything using the HD Cable Box remote, but I haven't gotten that far yet but I've got Comcast coming on Saturday and hopefully they can let me know if this is possible: let me know if you have a solution.
So here are the components and the cable types used to connect:
- HD Cable Box to TV: HDMI cable & Optical Audio cable
- Home Theatre to TV: Red, Blue & Green component cables
- BluRay Player to TV: HDMI cable
I hope this helps someone else.