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The Firefox OS operating system Panasonic has developed in conjunction with Mozilla for its high-end 2015 TVs is outstanding.
Its bright, colourful, icon-based presentation sets an instantly friendly tone, and the intuitive way it organises content makes it brilliantly easy to hunt down whatever content source takes your fancy. Best of all, the system is exceptionally easy to customise, enabling you to create your own bespoke home screen containing only those apps you use the most.
Panasonic hasn't managed to integrate its picture set up features into the Firefox OS environment, but the set up menus are reasonably logical, if a little cluttered looking due to the sheer number of adjustments available.
Panasonic ships a 'smart' remote control with the 65CR852, too, which does a solid job of reducing the button count and allowing you to navigate the TV menus using a touch pad rather than the normal up, down, left and right buttons. The touch pad isn't quite as responsive as I'd like, though, and it's a shame the smart remote doesn't support the excellent 'point and click' functionality you get with the latest smart remotes of LG and Samsung.
While the 65CR852's audio isn't as precise and detailed as its pictures, it's still pretty strong overall.
It's got enough power to produce a soundstage wide enough and loud enough to match the large scale of the images, and it delivers its high volumes without sounding muddy or overloaded - even though there's a greater sense of bass in the mix than you get with most modern TVs.
I was impressed to find, too, that the speakers remain free from 'phutting' distortions unless you use a volume setting far beyond a level most people would consider comfortable.
While the 65CR852's £2,800 price tag isn't excessive by the standards of the 4K UHD TV world at large, it does make the TV around £100 and £300 more expensive than its flat sibling, the 65CX802.
Which means it doesn't feel like a very good deal when you consider that it doesn't perform as well as the cheaper flat model.
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.