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Panasonic TX-50DX750B review

 Review: April 2016  
 

Rating: 5 stars

In a nutshell: The Panasonic Viera TX-50DX750B is a very attractive 50-inch UHD (4K) TV available at a reasonably competitive price. It delivers a very rich viewing experience with both 4K and standard definition viewing material, and has the advantage of HDR support too. The Firefox OS Smart TV system and Freeview Play with twin tuners make it a full all-round entertainment system, and we heartily recommend it!

Best buy: Panasonic Viera TX-50DX750B from Currys (£799.00)



 

Panasonic DX750 review: Design & looks

Panasonic's Viera DX750 Ultra HD TV sits fairly close to the top of its 2016 range, and has the looks of a flagship TV, with its "Switch" design concept.

Thanks to its edge backlighting system, the TV panel itself is extremely thin. The upper half of the TV is razor-thin, and even where the thickness increases in the lower half, it still only reaches a slimline 40mm at its thickest point. "Thin" is the watchword in the DX750's design, because the silver bezel that surrounds the TV is wafer thin too, with just a narrow black inset strip to give the picture some welcome contrast against the silver outer bezel. The edge of the screen carries the same silver finish, giving a seamless effect. It's an airy look for what could otherwise be a large and overbearing television. Supporting the 50-inch screen is a very solid and super stylish chrome stand, whose feet can be adjusted in different configurations.

The DX750 carries on Panasonic's design success from 2015, with one of the best-looking TVs we've seen so far this year.

The TV is A-rated for energy efficiency, with a typical power consumption of 96W, although this can rise to 152W on full brightness. A standard TV remote is included in the box.

Picture quality

Last year, the 50-inch screen size overtook 40 inches as the most popular size in the UK, thanks to plunging prices, and we'd say that 50 inches is the perfect size for a family TV in an average-sized lounge. 2015 was also the year that HDR entered the TV world, and in 2016 it will come of age, with HDR Blu-ray players going on sale, and more and more UHD HDR content available to stream. So what we're trying to say, is that a 50-inch UHD HDR TV is the ideal kind of TV to buy in 2016.

Panasonic's "Super Bright" technology impressed us in models like last year's Viera TX50CX700B, and the Panasonic TX-50DX750B builds on that success. The TX-50DX750 delivers superb brightness and inky dark blacks, and also manages to deliver wider viewing angles than many rival screens, making it ideal when all the family are sitting around the TV.

The screen uses edge backlighting with a small number of separate lighting zones, rather than the full array backlighting of the flagship DX902B, so it can't quite match the supreme contrast levels of that TV, but it still does a good job of reproducing the kind of dynamic contrast range that's needed for a HDR TV. With non-HDR source material, the results are truly stunning.

Compared with last year's CX700B, the Viera TX50CX700B has improved colour accuracy, with better local contrast control for more shadow detail, and a wider colour spectrum. The Studio Master HCX processor enables high fidelity reproduction of HDR source material, although the edge backlighting isn't as refined as direct lighting systems.

There are five picture modes available - Dynamic, Normal, Cinema, True Cinema, and Custom, with "True Cinema" giving the most accurate colour reproduction, although not the most vivid results.

Motion control is good, with a very rapid 1,800Hz Back Light Motion (BMR) rate, and we found motion to be judder-free and smooth, despite this being a native 100Hz panel, making this TV excellent for sport and movies.

3D

Some of the other big manufacturers have dropped 3D support this year, but Panasonic continues to offer this feature, and the Panasonic TX-50DX750B has a 3D mode available, with Active 3D glasses required to unlock this feature.

Audio quality

The audio quality of the DX750 models isn't particularly a strength. The TV uses just two stereo speakers with a total power output of 20W, and with V Audio simulated surround sound. This is typical of mid-range televisions.

While the audio quality is good enough for everyday watching, we'd recommend investing in additional home cinema speakers to get the best out of this TV.

Smart TV

Panasonic's Mozilla Firefox OS Smart TV system is based around a customisable home screen, providing a simple interface to access all the TV channels, apps, videos, websites and other content available. This includes Netflix 4K, Amazon Instant Video 4K, YouTube 4K, a Firefox web browser, and other apps. The upcoming Amazon Prime HDR and Netflix HDR streams will also be supported.

Freeview Play is included, making catch-up TV easily accessible from the main menu. The EPG gives you access to more than 60 TV channels and 12 HD channels, as well as catch-up services including BBC iPlayer, ITV Hub, All 4 and Demand 5. Twin tuners let you watch one channel while recording another on a USB disk.

The remote control includes a handy Netflix button, and the system supports voice control. The quadcore processor ensures that the system is quick to respond.

Connectivity

The DX750B has 4 HDMI connections, two of which support the 4K HDCP2.2 standard, and one of which is Audio Return Channel (ARC) compatible, for connecting to an A/V receiver. There's also a combined component/composite video input and a digital audio optical output for hooking up to legacy AV devices, but SCART support has been dropped this year.

Other connectivity options include built-in Wi-Fi and ethernet, for connecting to a home network, plus 3 USB ports (one with USB 3.0 support), Bluetooth keyboard & mouse support, and easy mirroring of compatible smartphones and tablets.

Panasonic's Viera remote app for iOS and Android turns your smartphone or tablet into a TV remote controller with added functionality.

Conclusion - brilliant, but quite pricey

The Panasonic TX-50DX750B builds on the company's success of last year, with a brilliant follow-up to our 50-inch TV of The Year 2015, the Panasonic TX-50CX700B. The DX750B takes the design language of that TV forward, incorporating all of the features that made that model so compelling, and unlocking HDR capability too.

There are compromises here - edgelighting isn't ideal for the subtlety required to fully reproduce HDR movies, and the panel doesn't have the full brightness and colour spectrum required by the Ultra HD Premium standard. But it does a pretty good job of HDR, and handles non-HDR superbly.

At launch, the DX750B is retailing for around £1,300, which is a hefty premium to pay when compared with the very competitively-priced CX700B. While it's a lot cheaper than Panasonic's flagship models, it's expensive compared with the best-selling Samsung UE50JU6800 for instance.

Our target price for the DX750 is around the £1,000 mark, at which point it will be a truly outstanding TV, and a contender for our 2016 shortlist of TV of the Year.


Panasonic TX-50DX750B features include:

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User questions

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Hi just wondering which is the best tv between the Panasonic tx-50dx750b and the lg 55uh950v?

Asked by shaun smith from uk on 10th Jul 2016
I am a gamer and a movie fan and I have always had lg tv cheers.

Reply by S21 from UK on 10th Jul 2016
We have given both TVs 5-star ratings. The LG is much more expensive, and is a great choice if you have the money to spend.

When will you give usa markets a brake and offer this product ? !!!!

Asked by wcarey from usa on 2nd May 2016

Reply by SV from UK on 16th Dec 2016
Better give it a break. A brake is something that slows things down!



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