Panasonic has just introduced nine new lovely Viera flat panel TVs to ogle at, including three Plasma Screens, which now sap 35% less power. The TH-50PX500, TH-42PX500 and TH-37PX500 plasma TVs incorporate new PEAKS technology (Picture Enhancement Accelerator with Kinetic System), set to combat the age old plasma problem of not being able to display black properly; each can now achieve a 3,000:1 contrast ratio. Panny has also designed these plasmas to work better in ordinary living rooms, where luminance levels are usually higher than what is optimal for the TV. These beasts are set to be available in 50", 42" or 37".
The remaining six models are all LCD and strive to offer quick response to reduce motion blur. The premium LX500 models are sized 32" and 26" for the TH-32LX500 and TH-26LX500 models respectively; they too contain PEAKS processors reducing image persistence to 7.8msec. LCD AI technology can detect input signal brightness and adjust the backlight in real time and the IPS (In Plane Switching) panel allows unrestricted viewing over a 176-degree angle; along with the PX500s they contain an HDMI terminal allowing greater compatibility to high quality peripherals.
At a lower budget, the VIERA LX50 range comes in 32", 26", 23" and 19"; they too include greater energy saving capacity and contain SD card slots to allow digital photograph viewing. However if you’ve splashed on the PX500 or LX500 models, you can also record to an SD card in MPEG4 format to allow viewing of one channel whilst recording another.
Japanese models will be capable of receiving BS, CS110 and terrestrial broadcasting, in addition to analogue terrestrial broadcasting, but no news on their capabilities on this continent. The price and availability time of these mega TV’s isn’t known yet but you can guarantee it will hit your wallet hard.