Panasonic’s new TH-65VX100 is a TV of extremes in every sense. It’s huge, for one thing – a 65in screen is some size even in the modern market, and that 69kg weight isn’t to be sniffed at either.
The price is equally eye watering: at a suggested £8,000, this set costs substantially more than many of the best 60in sets on the market.
But you get plenty to play with to sweeten the deal, right? Nope: it’s stripped for action, resolutely focused on delivering the maximum possible picture performance.
There’s nary a trace of a widget or a fancy adaptive backlight – in fact, there aren’t any loudspeakers, and you don’t even get a TV tuner.
That’s because this set isn’t part of Panasonic’s Viera range of flat TVs: instead, it’s sold as part of the company’s professional operation, and so is aimed squarely at an enthusiast, home cinema-orientated audience.
That means you can specify it to suit your needs with various input boards (ours had four HDMIs, for example) but at the same time, you don’t pay for features you won’t need or use, such as speakers.
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Of course, you’ve a right to expect a good picture as compensation for all this hair-shirted purism: happily, the TH-65VX100 delivers that in spades.
Naturally, it’s a Full HD, 1920x1080 panel, featuring a new-generation plasma panel with a dramatic 60,000:1 claimed contrast ratio, a wider colour gamut and extraordinarily powerful 18-bit digital signal processing, able to deliver 7,160 steps of light-to-dark gradation. We can’t think of a TV that allows more adjustability, either: the on-screen options are amazingly complete.
Excellent picture quality
In action, the Panasonic’s picture quality is just wonderful. Detail is beautifully sharp and well-resolved, even with rapid motion, and textures are exceptionally convincing.
Black levels are brilliantly inky and consistent, too – only Pioneer’s Kuro plasmas rival the depth and sheer drama here.