Panasonic TH-42PX70 review

5 stars
£1,000
Viera styling, Panasonic badge kudos, plenty of performance and all for less than a grand – the TH-42PX70 seems an incredible deal

Before we introduce the TH-42PX70, we’d like to clear a few things up. Plasma is not inferior to LCD. Plasma TVs don’t need to be re-gassed after a few years. And Full HD sets aren’t automatically better than HD-Ready models.

This is because there are several factors that affect picture quality – resolution, yes, but black levels, contrast, colour accuracy, motion smoothness and digital noise can all have as much impact on your enjoyment of a TV, particularly when you’re watching standard-def.

With all that in mind, consider Panasonic’s brilliant TH-42PX70. It’s not the best plasma TV ever made (that’s a Pioneer) or the sharpest (that’s any Panasonic or Pioneer with Full HD), but it’s easily the best value telly in town.

Absurdly good value

Here’s why. Panasonic nominally asks £1000 for its 42in set: shop around, and you’ll easily get that down to £750 or less. That’s a hell of a lot of quality for your cash.

The Panasonic gives you an excellent digital TV tuner, able to decipher even the noisiest, blockiest Freeview channel and present a viewable, natural picture.

It also shines with DVD, producing a film-like image with considerable contrast and insight into low-light scenes: it’s so much more watchable, especially with the lights down, than many same-priced LCD rivals.

Impressive 1080p scaling

Of course, where those LCD rivals score is in their higher pixel count, but their advantages aren’t as clear-cut as you might think. Most sets in the Panasonic’s class are 1366x768 designs, with only a few mustering the top-spec 1920x1080 Full HD resolution.

And besides, the TH-42PX70 readily accepts 1080p images (in fact, Panasonic makes much of the quality of the set’s scaling), and will also handle 24fps video without fuss.

Feed it a Blu-ray signal, and you’ll be thrilled at the results: motion is smooth, black levels excellent, and the picture wonderfully three-dimensional. Granted, as you can read elsewhere, Panasonic’s sibling set, the Full HD TH-42PX70, is better still, being sharper and more defined, but then it costs more. Whether you think that premium worth paying is up to you, and your credit card limit.

Related reviews

Panasonic TH-37PX70

Toshiba 42X3030

says

Panasonic TH-42PX70

Terrific value and a high-quality set – it’s not Full HD, but at this price, you won’t miss it
Panasonic TH-42PX70 review
5 stars
£1,000
You have to login or register to comment.