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First Freeview HD TV goes on sale

Pre-order a Panasonic, says Comet

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Eager to get watching Freeview HD? Retailer Comet has begun taking orders for Panasonic's TX-P42G20B 42in plasma TV with a built-in DVB-T2 tuner.

Comet wants a whopping £1100 for the telly. That price buys you a 1080p set with 600Hz motion interpolation technology, cinema-style 24f/s playback and a 5,000,000:1 contrast ratio.

The set also sports Panasonic's VieraCast internet access system, and DLNA client access to play back JPEG, AAC, MP3, MPEG 2, AVCHD and DivX HD files. It has an SD card slot and you can hook up a hard drive to its USB port and record incoming programmes, Panasonic said.

Comet's website only lists the TX-P42G20B, but Panasonic has 46in and 50in versions of the G20-series plasma telly in the pipeline. Two G20-series LCDs are coming too: the TX-L32G20B and TX-L37G20B, both of which do 200Hz interpolation and offer a 100,000:1 contrast ratio. Otherwise, they match the specs of the plasma panels.

Panasonic is also preparing three cheaper plasmas: the S20 series, which comprises 50in, 46in and 42in models, all of which have the functionality of the G20 plasmas, but lesser, 100,000:1 contrast ratio displays. Two equivalent LCDs are on the way: the TX-L32S20B and TX-L37S20B.

Comet says the TX-P42G20B will ship in March. ®

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