The Panasonic VT20 is Panasonic's first 3D TV, and it's a belter.

Samsung may have (just) beaten Panasonic in the race to put 3D TVs on the high-street, with its range of LCD and LED-backlit 3D screens, but the Japanese giant's arrival is perhaps more portentous.

The brand was the first major advocate for the format, masterminding the AVC Multiview codec now adopted as the standard to encode 3D Blu-ray movies, and famously sidling up alongside James Cameron when his Avatar project was looking more folly than phenomenon.

Key features

The new 3D screen shares much in common with the brand's 2D TX-P50G20. The bezel colour is different, here it's a dark bronze with silver-effect trim, but beneath the hood is much of the same picture-processing electronics, allied to a lookalike NeoPDP screen.

3d glasses

The TX-P50VT20 is one of only two 3D screens due from Panasonic this summer. It will be joined by the 65-inch TX-P65VT20, expected to sell for around twice the price. There is no difference between the two, bar the size of the glass.

So how does its first consumer 3D screen, the 50-inch TX-P50VT20, look – and does it have more to offer than just a couple of pairs of funny glasses?