314 of 326 people found the following review helpful
Well designed, great picture,
This review is from: Panasonic TX-L42E6B 42-inch Full HD 1080p Smart LED TV with Built in Wi-Fi and Freeview HD (Electronics)
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This TV has replaced my previous Panasonic 37" (TX-L37TU10B) TV. I have been a professional film and video cameraman for many years so picture quality is important to me (although I should emphasise I am using this TV for home not professional use). Although for the last two decades I have used Sony cameras, I now own a broadcast standard Panasonic video camera - in fact much of my home equipment (from breadmaker to still camera) happens to be Panasonic too. This is not down to any particular brand loyalty (and certainly no commercial connection), just that Panasonic make very good quality kit.
Firstly, this TV looks good. Its silver and glass design is restrained and elegant and, because of its thin bezel, feels no more dominant in the living room than than my previous 37" screen.
Printed documentation is minimal but on-screen help is excellent. Setting up the TV is very easy and, when completed, you are presented with choice of 'Home Screen' formats. The default format has the main screen image shrunk to about 3/4 size with a panel to the right giving a scrollable guide to TV channels, at the bottom of the screen you can select from the various other functions. Because there are so many ways of getting programmes on your TV - online, VOD, disc, USB, hard disc, cable and so forth - it is almost impossible to design a simple, clear interface that satisfies all users, but Panasonic have done a pretty good job.
This is, of course. a `smart' TV and among its features are:
- Freeview HD which gives, as would be expected, great picture quality on the four Freeview HD channels. Standard definition channels are also upscaled well - much better than on my previous TV where standard definition pictures had a rather nasty smooth but plasticy quality to skin tones.
- Built-in wi-fi which connected swiftly and painlessly to my home network. YouTube, iPlayer, Netflix and a web browser are all available but not, unfortunately LoveFilm, 4OD or ITVplayer - unfortunate omissions. I've had no problems streaming video through my network. An Ethernet connector is also available for a wired connection.
- A media player that plays from a USB drive or memory stick in one of the two USB ports. This TV plays most standard formats including .mkv, .mp4 and .avi movie files with no problems. Unlike my previous TV there is no SD card slot.
- Media Server. Easily connected via wi-fi to access all the media files on my computer. (I have a Mac and downloaded the free TVMobli software to enable this).
- 3 HDMI ports, 1 scart + 1 component/composite input. (Another HDMI port would be useful given the complexity of many home set-ups these days).
- Digital audio (Toslink) out. Unfortunately, if you run your audio through an analogue hi-fi amp (as I do) there is no analogue audio out but there is a minijack headphone socket which works fine. (I compared the headphone output to the digital audio via a Musical Fidelity DAC and although, switching between the two, the latter was noticeably clearer - airier and with better separation - without a direct comparison, the headphone output is perfectly acceptable). Audio quality from the TV's speakers is OK but no better than would be expected from a thin TV with small speakers.
There are also well designed free iOS and Android Viera apps that turn your phone or tablet into a remote control with the facility to 'swipe and share' video between that device and the TV.
There is no 3D function but this is not something that bothers me at all - if you want 3D, the Panasonic TX-L42ET60B provides it for another £130.
Of course the most crucial feature is picture quality and, I have to say, it is very good indeed. If you delve into advanced settings you can have a huge control over colour management (including individual settings of hue, saturation and luminance for each of the three primaries as well as gamma, gain and signal level) but messing with those is not for the faint hearted. Of the five 'viewing modes' (dynamic, normal, cinema, true cinema and custom) I have gone for 'true cinema' (I like to watch TV with the lights low) and reduced the brightness a little to maintain deep blacks. The pictures I am watching are, if it is not a contradiction, both vibrant and natural with excellent contrast. There is plenty of detail without artificial sharpening and colour purity is good if not excellent. I have a small living room so, viewing angles for those sitting at the side tend to be quite extreme and although there is some fall-off in contrast at the widest angles it is minimal.
Overall, this is an attractive, well designed TV with a great picture. Apart from the minor omissions mentioned above, there is really nothing wrong with this television. I have no hesitation in recommending it.
Tracked by 8 customers
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Showing 1-10 of 22 posts in this discussion
Initial post: 13 Sep 2013 18:13:15 BDT
You can probably get analogue audio out from the Scart connector, you usually can. Though on some TVs it is only the audio from the internal tuner not from any other source eg HDMIs
Posted on 2 Nov 2013 08:03:23 GMT
Hi, does this tv have a optical out? thanks
In reply to an earlier post on 2 Nov 2013 08:06:58 GMT
Thanks for the quick reply. that now confirms my purchase... can't wait, thank you again
In reply to an earlier post on 10 Nov 2013 14:06:52 GMT
Panasonic TX-L39B6B 39-inch Widescree Freeview Full HD 1080p LED TV (New for 2013)
I've just receiveda Panasonic 39B6B, I chose it after reading glowing reports but I'm rather disapointed with it! The picture is too dim for watching in the daylight; I'vjust watched the Rememberance Sunday Parade and although it w as day light the scene might have been night time. I've spent alot of time setting the backlight , brightness etc and it is now at it's best settings . Is the E6B series any better ?
In reply to an earlier post on 26 Nov 2013 19:56:31 GMT
Graham Gall says:
Hi Phyllis, can't say I have had any problems while watching in daylight on my 39E6B. I use the True Cinema setting which is the one I find gives me the best picture, always looks good (to me) irrespective of the ambient light.
Rather surprised you are having problems with your 39B6B, there are normally loads of adjustments available on Panasonic tv's to get the best picture. Could you perhaps check out your model in a shop environment, just in case yours is faulty?
Posted on 29 Nov 2013 11:00:20 GMT
Hi, I'm looking for a TV that is optimal for DVDs and Blu-rays, I was wondering if you could answer a few questions about this TV please? Does this model have an 'Intelligent Frame Creation (IFC) setting which can be turned on or off? Also does it have adjustable settings for Sharpness and something called Overscan? Thank you.
Also what is your opinion on DVD and Blu-ray quality? I read a review that says this model isn't the best for upscaling DVDs and since my collection is largely DVD based I would be worried about a drop in quality from my current TV which I haven't had a problem with.
I ask because I currently have a Sony KDL32V4000 and I have just began buying blu-rays. On some blu-rays I am experiencing a sort of motion blur, it can vary from very mild (Alien) to so severe I find the movie unwatchable (The Bourne Identity). Some, like Skyfall, are absolutely fine.
I was advised that this could be because of auto interpolation settings on my TV. Unfortunately my TV doesn't have the option to change these settings, maybe because it's older, so it's possible they are built in as default. If I'm to upgrade I'd like to know I won't run into the same problems again.
In reply to an earlier post on 29 Nov 2013 11:37:18 GMT
Last edited by the author on 29 Nov 2013 11:38:06 GMT
Hi there - Yes, it certainly has settings for Sharpness and Overscan, but not IFC. Sharpness I would tend to turn down as it adds artificial edges to objects in the picture that give the illusion of detail rather than real detail. At its extreme it looks like someone has taken a magic marker and outlined everything in the picture. Most video equipment (cameras as well as monitors) has an element of 'sharpening' built in, but as the technology has got better, you need less sharpening so I tend to turn it down as much as I can without the picture looking obviously soft. Overscan (which should be turned off) is really an legacy of analogue TV where you avoided showing the edges of the picture (cathode ray tubes were imprecise so to solve this an oversize picture was transmitted which was cropped by overscanning - like in printing where the images is 'bled' and the paper cropped to the right size) - with digital TV you should be able to display every pixel.
Blu-rays and DVDs both look great on this TV. As far as upscaling goes, that really comes down to your DVD/Blu-ray player, not your TV. It's the DVD player that delivers an HDMI output and is responsible for upscaling. I have an inexpensive Panasonic Blu-ray player that upscales very well. if you switch on '1080p pixel direct' this avoids unnecessary signal processing which may alleveiate the motion blur you are referring to (which I have not experienced with my set-up). It's also worth switching on 'Film Cadence Mode'.
Hope this helps.
In reply to an earlier post on 29 Nov 2013 11:49:53 GMT
Thanks very much!
At the moment I just use my games console's for movie viewing. Xbox 360 for DVD and PS3 for Blu-ray. As you can probably tell I'm by no means a videophile! But the motion blur was so severe on The Bourne Identity yet the disc got rave reviews for video quality when I looked it up. As you can imagine I'm anxious to spend a few hundred quid on something that may or may not improve my playback, but your answers have helped a lot and I think I'm going to take a shot and order this TV! Thank you
In reply to an earlier post on 29 Nov 2013 12:03:17 GMT
It may be worth investing in a blu-ray player. I have a Panasonic DMP-BD75 which is no longer made, but this Panasonic DMP-BD79EB-K for 55 quid looks very similar.
I have not watched The Bourne Identity on blu-ray but all the blu-rays I've watched have looked great.