Panasonic TX-L32ET5B review

Panasonic's first passive 3D TV proves a surprising 32-inch hit

Panasonic TX-L32ET5B
Panasonic's 32-inch 3D TV produces great images

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Panasonic TX-L32ET5B review

Generally speaking, images on the Panasonic TX-L32ET5B are top-rate. Starting with the basics, Freeview and Freeview HD broadcasts are eminently watchable and require very little processing or adjustment.

Switching between Normal and Cinema modes is usually all that's required to produce clear images with accurate colours and strong levels of contrast.

Even ropey old transmissions of Minder on ITV4 are up to snuff, and fast-moving footage such as Champions League footy and HD movies hold together nicely, with negligible levels of judder.

You can eliminate judder entirely by switching IFC to max, but this introduces unwanted side-effects of occasional haloing and makes filmic material look like it was shot on a video camcorder. IFC's medium or low setting is a good compromise for watching sport, but it's best left off when watching movies.

Panasonic TX-L32ET5B review

Switch to a 1080p/24 Blu-ray and IFC is automatically disabled in favour of 24p Smooth Film mode, which has very much the same effect. At least it can be adjusted to minimum, or turned off.

Overall, though, Blu-rays look stunning on the Panasonic TX-L32ET5B, aided in no small part by an exceptionally good black level and crucially, even levels of brightness. Avatar, for example, is richly rendered, falling just shy of the clarity we've seen on bigger screens.

There's no pooling of light when watching dark scenes, since Panasonic has made a sterling effort of implementing a consistently even backlight. This means you're at liberty to crank up the brightness without fear of overdoing selected parts of the image.

Panasonic TX-L32ET5B review

Watching 3D images on the Panasonic TX-L32ET5B is surprisingly impressive. The TV makes a decent fist of converting daytime 2D broadcasts to 3D, and bespoke 3D material such as Monsters Vs Aliens Blu-ray undoubtably benefits from a near-absence of crosstalk.

And the loss of resolution doesn't seem too terrible, given the other convenience benefits of passive specs.

Off-axis 2D viewing with the Panasonic TX-L32ET5B is excellent, with no deterioration in image quality as you move to the side, even from very acute viewing angles.