p42g20

If you walked around your local AV store looking at all the TVs on sale, it's quite possible - probable, even - that you would walk straight past the P42G20 without giving it a second glance. You'd likely be seduced, instead, by the glamour and crazy brightness levels of the latest LCD whizz kid.

But actually, it's the very qualities of the P42G20's pictures that stop it 'shining' in a bright shop environment that make it such a treat when it's installed in your living room.

For it understands that contrast is much more important than brightness; that colours are actually far better off being accurate than garish; and that over-sharpening pictures is really just a recipe for noisy disaster.

In other words, get a P42G20 home, and you'll find yourself with a TV that loves TV - especially films - as much as you do.

We liked:

You may have noticed by now that we're kind of into the P42G20's picture quality!

The advances in terms of contrast and colour introduced by the new NeoPDP technology are profound, serving up a picture that caters perfectly for the AV cognoscenti. Many people will be seriously attracted to its almost unlimited viewing angle, too.

Its multimedia talents are solid as well, and we appreciated its USB recording abilities - once we got them working.

We disliked:

Why Panasonic should insist in dressing such a grand TV as the P42G20 in such drab clothes is beyond us. The restrictive situation regarding compatible USB HDDs is annoying too, and we guess people with very bright rooms might find the P42G20's post-calibration pictures just a little lacking in brightness.

Verdict:

With the P42G20, Panasonic has effectively introduced the quality of last year's high-end models to a mid-range price point - and you can't ask for more than that. Plus, of course, it raises tantalising questions about just what Panasonic might be about to deliver with its flagship, 3D-capable VT20 models...

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