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Panasonic's shift to a specially created TV version of Firefox for its smart TV interface turns out to be a masterstroke, enabling Panasonic to combine a beautifully designed interface with oodles of handy customisability and a rich world of content that can only grow further given the relatively open, already well-supported nature of the Firefox platform.
Panasonic's new 'smart' remote control design - which ships alongside a decent if rather button-heavy normal remote - is a big improvement over the brand's previous smart remote control efforts.
It uses a reasonably large, rectangular touch pad at its heart versus the previous over-small, unhelpfully circular one, and its curved design feels very comfortable in your hand.
It's a shame, though, that Panasonic hasn't yet introduced the same point and click approach now offered by Samsung and LG handsets.
The 50CX802's enthusiast focus means that you will need a little picture know-how and the courage and time to delve into the TV's extensive picture set up options if you want to get the absolute best from the TV with all the different types of source that may come its way.
But the results provide a big reward for your efforts, and if you really can't be bothered to change any in-depth settings, I guess a couple of the provided picture presets are at least decently usable.
The 50CX802 is a mixed bag sonically.
In the plus column it can go reasonably loud without losing clarity, its mid-range is expansive enough to render voices believably even during dense sequences, and there's enough detail in the mix to make movie mixes feel involving and alive.
The 50CX802 doesn't do bass as convincingly or deeply as some rival high-end TVs though, and the lack of any forward facing speakers can leave the audio sounding a bit hemmed in at times.
This is to some extent the 50CX802's ace in the hole. It's really great value for such an accomplished, feature-rich TV, especially when compared with similarly high level TVs from Sony and Samsung.
Those rival TVs have slightly showier, more dynamic pictures, but the 50CX802 delivers a key attraction of its own by giving the most subtly coloured, detailed and frankly plasma-like pictures seen from an LCD TV to date.
John has been writing about home entertainment technology for more than two decades - an especially impressive feat considering he still claims to only be 35 years old (yeah, right). In that time he’s reviewed hundreds if not thousands of TVs, projectors and speakers, and spent frankly far too long sitting by himself in a dark room.