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Panasonic TX-P65VT30 review

Panasonic has super-sized its high-end NeoPlasma display

Our Verdict

For

  • Dazzlingly detailed 2D hi-def
  • Immersive and crosstalk-free 3D
  • Excellent media streaming

Against

  • 3D spex not the most comfortable
  • Wi-Fi isn't integrated

One unexpected side effect from the growing take-up of 3DTVs is that folks are migrating to larger screen sizes. This means a warm welcome should await Panasonic's TX-P65VT30.

This 65-inch iteration of its top-of-the-line NeoPlasma range is a glorious extravagance. The sheer size obviously poses a challenge. It takes three people to get it out of the box and the 56kg weight means wall-mounting will require some serious planning. It's a good thing then that the supplied pedestal is smart and substantial.

Engorged as it is, the design works well, with the edge-to-edge glass fascia taking on the appearance of a French window.

Connectivity options are standard fare. Wi-Fi isn't built in, but Panasonic does include a USB Wi-Fi adaptor in the box.

Powerful pictures

Panasonic tx p65vt30b

A screen of this size is completely unforgiving when it comes to visual shortcomings in your sources, but feed it a Blu-ray and it shines. The VT30's picture is both refi ned and nuanced. Quite aside from the massive amount of fine detail on offer, the screen has extraordinary dynamics with stygian black levels and searing peak whites.

At times I actually began to wonder if the panel, which sports the brand's High Contrast Filter Pro, for improved luminous efficiency, looks too black and contrasty. But of course, there are plenty of parameter controls available to constrain it. In truth, this is not a difficult set to calibrate; the Normal median is already good, just ease down the sharpness and tweak contrast to taste.

It's slightly inconvenient that none of the regular picture parameters have numerical counters; these only appear in the ISF modes. Alternatively, you could just engage the THX 2D preset – it's well-judged for movie watching. Not only is the set's regular HD image terrific, but the screen's 3D performance is outstanding.

TechRadar Labs

TechRadar labs

Power consumption: Watts
White screen: 380 Watts
Test footage: 160 Watts

An unsurprisingly high power measurement with our 100IRE test. With movie material, the average figure is somewhat lower.

Contrast ratio
Claimed: 5,000,000: 1
Measured: 32,000:1

Contrast nowhere near the ludicrous claims, but a good post-calibration figure. Luminance measured at 9.5fL.

Colour temperature: Kelvin
Un-calibrated: 6,000 K
Cool: 10,300 K
Normal: 7,300 K
Warm: 6,000 K
Calibrated: 6,500 K

ISF tweaks allow fine-tuning to 6,500K.

Panasonic has cured traditional double imaging problems with faster phosphors and new Crosstalk Reduction circuitry. The result is a stereoscopic image that's wonderfully convincing; the THX-certified 3D picture has tremendous depth. Once you clip past 60 inches, 3D at home starts to make quite a lot of sense.

The immersion experienced in the cinema is replicated by this massive screen. Tron:Legacy (BD) once again feels majestic and those sporadic full-frame sequences, which look kinda odd on a regular telly, suddenly get their old impact back.

Of course, this flagship TV offers other trimmings too. Its media streaming is excellent, with bulletproof video file support (including MKV), as well as music with album art – when it comes to multimedia integration Panasonic is giving its rivals a lesson.

Panasonic tx p65vt30b

The Viera Connect IPTV portal is well-stocked, too, and Skype functionality is offered. Be warned that IPTV sources viewed on this scale do look pretty ropey.

Panasonic's YouTube client really suffers. It's not that hot at the best of times, settling for SD rather than streaming 720 HD when it's available. Let's hope this limitation is addressed with a firmware update (hopefully to YouTube Lean Back) sooner rather than later.

Overall, though, this is a traffic stopper of a TV. The quality of Panasonic's VT30 panel and the accompanying picture engine isn't diminished by the size of the screen beast. Indeed, if anything it's enhanced, with 3D a spectacular beneficiary. It's almost like having your own personal IMAX.

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Tech Specs

Product TypePlasma TV
Scan Format1080p
Standard Refresh Rate50 Hz
Digital TunerDVB-S2, DVB-T (MPEG4)
Analog TunerPAL
Video Signal StandardHDTV 1080p
Number of HDMI Ports4
Number of SCART Interfaces1
Product FamilyViera VT30
3D Type3D
Brand NamePanasonic
Screen Size165.1 cm (65")
Aspect Ratio16:9
Green CompliantYes
Green Compliance Certificate/AuthorityREACH
Memory Card ReaderYes
EthernetYes
Wireless LANYes
Ethernet TechnologyEthernet
USBYes
HDMIYes
Weight with Stand (Approximate)63 kg
Operating Power Consumption500 W
Standby Power Consumption300 mW
RMS Output Power12 W
Electronic Program GuideYes
DLNA CertifiedYes
VGAYes
HeadphoneYes
Digital Audio OutputYes
Height with Stand994 mm
Width with Stand1570 mm
Depth with Stand400 mm
CI+Yes
Composite VideoYes
Component VideoYes
SCARTYes
Teletext Memory1500
3D ConversionYes
USB RecordingYes
Motion Interpolation TechnologyIntelligent Frame Creation Pro
Enhanced Refresh Rate600 Hz
Memory Card SupportedSecure Digital (SD)
Height956 mm
Width1570 mm
Depth60 mm
Sound SystemVirtual Surround Sound, Dolby Digital Plus, Dolby Pulse, DTS
Product SeriesVT30
Maximum Resolution1920 x 1080
FeaturesWeb Content Access, Picture and Text (PAT), Picture in Picture, Picture and Picture (PAP), PC Streaming, Media Player, Child Lock, Teletext
ManufacturerPanasonic
Product ModelTX-P65VT30B
Product NameViera TX-P65VT30B Plasma TV
Product LineViera
Manufacturer Part NumberTXP65VT30B
Manufacturer Website Addresshttp://www.panasonic.co.uk
Marketing Information

The viewing experience has never been so lifelike and compelling as it is with Panasonic's 3D Technology. The fast switching phosphors used in the Neo Plasma panels and an original light-emitting process minimise crosstalk (double images) to deliver clear 3D images and ensure comfortable viewing. This technology also helps to improve 2D picture quality.

The 600Hz Sub-field Drive in VIERA plasma TVs teams up with Intelligent Frame Creation Pro technology to deliver smooth, fluid, on-screen motion. By using an intelligent algorithm within the picture processing based on motion detection, the best combination of frames is created to deliver ultra crisp sports, film and game action.

Package Contents
  • Viera TX-P65VT30B Plasma TV
  • Wireless LAN Adaptor
  • 2 x Pairs of 3D Eyewear
SpeakersYes
Limited Warranty5 Year
Weight (Approximate)56 kg