Panasonic TX-P42ST30B review

An ugly, yet affordable 3D plasma capable of delivering very impressive pictures

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Panasonic tx p42st30b

Whether it's an iPod or a robot vacuum cleaner, it pays to never buy a first-generation product, even if it seems startlingly impressive. The same is true of 3D plasma screens, as Panasonic's second generation of NeoPDP delivers a host of subtle but significant improvements.

The faster phosphor time, multimedia talents and general panel attenuation have been harnessed to deliver an enticing proposition for a 42-inch screen with 3D prowess.

We liked

The set's overall image performance with 2D and 3D sources is highly impressive. Once you've worked out which picture settings suit what sources you're guaranteed a rollickingly good visual experience.

The lack of artefacts with the IFC is especially good, as is the virtual absence of 3D crosstalk. The Viera Connect service has improved dramatically since last year and is a useful supplementary feature.

We disliked

We're no fans of the drab grey styling and cheapo remote control that are such a contrast to the more expensive sets in Panasonic's 2011 range.

The fact that you have to buy your 3D specs separately is illogical because if you weren't interested in it you wouldn't be buying this set in the first place.

Final verdict

You do need to play around with the settings sometimes but the screen's failings are much less significant than its successes. The TX-P42ST30B doesn't look that nice but it delivers more than it promises, rather than less. If you can see past the drab frame, the TX-P42ST30B is a bit of a bargain.

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Tech Specs

Product TypePlasma TV
Scan Format1080p
Standard Refresh Rate50 Hz
Digital TunerDVB-T (MPEG4)
Analog TunerPAL
Video Signal StandardHDTV 1080p
Number of HDMI Ports4
Number of SCART Interfaces1
Product FamilyViera ST30
3D Type3D
Brand NamePanasonic
Screen Size106.7 cm (42")
Aspect Ratio16:9
Green CompliantYes
Green Compliance Certificate/AuthorityREACH
Ethernet TechnologyEthernet
Weight with Stand (Approximate)23 kg
Operating Power Consumption295 W
Standby Power Consumption300 mW
RMS Output Power20 W
Electronic Program GuideYes
Digital Audio OutputYes
Height with Stand675 mm
Width with Stand1020 mm
Depth with Stand320 mm
Composite VideoYes
Component VideoYes
Teletext Memory1000
3D ConversionYes
Motion Interpolation TechnologyIntelligent Frame Creation Pro
Enhanced Refresh Rate600 Hz
Height640 mm
Width1020 mm
Depth69 mm
Sound SystemDolby Digital Plus, Dolby Pulse, DTS, Virtual Surround Sound
Product SeriesST30
Maximum Resolution1920 x 1080
Colour Depth68.7 Billion Colors (12-bit)
FeaturesChild Lock, Picture and Text (PAT), Media Player, PC Streaming, Web Content Access, Teletext
Product ModelTX-P42ST30B
Product NameViera TX-P42ST30B Plasma TV
Product LineViera
Manufacturer Part NumberTXP42ST30B
Manufacturer Website Address
Marketing Information

The viewing experience has never been so lifelike and compelling as it is with Panasonic's 3D Technology. The fast switching phosphors used in the Neo Plasma panels and an original light-emitting process minimise crosstalk (double images) to deliver clear 3D images and ensure comfortable viewing. This technology also helps to improve 2D picture quality.

The 600Hz Sub-field Drive in VIERA plasma TVs teams up with Intelligent Frame Creation Pro technology to deliver smooth, fluid, on-screen motion. By using an intelligent algorithm within the picture processing based on motion detection, the best combination of frames is created to deliver ultra crisp sports, film and game action.

Limited Warranty5 Year
Weight (Approximate)19.50 kg