Panasonic Viera TX-P46G20 46in plasma TV
HD Freeview and HD Freesat set, anyone?
Review Bursting at the seams with cutting-edge tech including dual HD tuners, both Freeview and Freesat, the Full HD TX-P46G20 is Panasonic’s highest-spec'd, non-3D, plasma screen. Functions such as 600Hz Sub-field Drive Intelligent Frame Creation Pro, Infinite Black contrast and a THX viewing mode supposedly combine to deliver knock-out pics from whatever source you care to throw at it.
Best of both worlds? Panasonic Viera TX-P46G20
Equipped with just about every digital and analogue input under the AV sun including an Ethernet jack, SD card slot, dual USBs, a Mini D-sub and four v1.4 HDMIs (one of which has the latest audio return path) the 46in P46G20 is the best connected TV this side of Tokyo. You can even record direct to hard disk or hook-up wirelessly to a router with an optional USB adapter, plus the set is DLNA-compliant.
The panel sits on a solidly built pedestal and its styling is understated, maybe a tad boring even. But the fingerprint-loving piano black frame I reviewed is preferable to the alternative grey version, which is really dull and won’t help with black levels.
Few users are likely to use Freesat and Freeview HD tuners simultaneously but those that do will be pleased to know that installation of both is quick and easy. To try the set’s Internet TV service I connected to my BT Home Hub by Ethernet without any difficulty at all and was able to explore the fledgling VieraCast’s rather meagre and eclectic offering of channels.
Input options abound
YouTube, Bloomberg, Picassa and Eurosport are the only channels of semi-serious interest, especially since Skype, although promised, isn’t available yet in the UK and four of the other six services are in German. VieraCast will grow to be a meaningful service once it includes VOD services such as the BBC iPlayer and but for now it remains very much a peripheral benefit.
Despite there being a shot of it - no mention of and subsequent markdown for the advertising in the freeview EPG (I'm guessing the freesat EPG lacks them). I seethe with fury every time I press the guide button that Panasonic deemed my purchase suitable for displaying their unsolicited, flashing shitty adverts at me and I have no way to opt out. Free sites on the Internet - fair enough, £1300 telly - taking the piss. Notably advertising in the EPG is otherwise the sole domain of cheapo freeview boxes that have had dubious firmware updates quite some time after purchase.
Panasonic's newer advert-laden EPG is also slower, crashier and, ridiculously since 1080p became the norm, has less actual EPG space in it than what they used to have, which looks exactly the same, aside from the ads and Radio Times logo.
I love(d) Panasonic sets - especially as most things content still being blocky horrid compressed mpeg-artifacty SD they have the best processing to make as much of that disappear as possible. I just want to punch the face of whichever clown in Panasonic decided they could use my telly as their own personal billboard every time I forget and press the guide button to check what's on.
Panasonic - if you want to advertise on TV - pay ITV or Sky some money like everyone else has to.
So nearly there but . . .
"and when you loose the filmic look you loose the magic."
"Cry 'Havoc!' and let lose the dogs' of war' ?
...that's followed by:
"This affect applied to older films especially can be most disconcerting."
Fired the last proofreader and spending the savings down the pub, El Reg?
Does anyone know...
Does anyone know if the USB ports are active? What formats of files can be read? jpeg, mpeg, div-x mkv etc? I can't seem to find it on Panasonic's blurb...
Maybe the router can cut the access to Ads if internet is used
If Internet is used to update the Ads the router can cut the access to that IP/URL and solve the annoying stuff ;)