Panasonic's TX-L65WT600 offers the first sighting of tomorrow's high frame rate 4K, and it's a thrilling display.
Fabulous 4K image quality
HDMI 2.0 and DisplayPort 1.2 for 2160p 50/60Hz support
Intuitive user interface
Statement glass and metal design
Lacklustre audio performance
Limited catch-up services
Poor off axis viewing
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In truth, it's actually shaped much like any other well-heeled 65-inch 8 million pixel screen, the real difference being the inclusion of an HDMI 2.0 input and DisplayPort 1.2 connectivity.
Effectively, what we have here is the first genuinely future-proofed Next Gen TV.
And with 4K TV standards still a broiling soup, that's a trump card that can't be ignored.
Features wise, the TX-L65WT600 mirrors what you'll find on Panasonic's high-end LED LCD and plasma offerings.
The user experience is built around the brand's My Home Screen portal, which peppers the launch screen with preferred apps. There's a fair range of connected services to choose from, from YouTube to subscription VOD.
The Panasonic TX-L65WT600 is also undeniably gorgeous. It embraces the glass and metal aesthetic seen on the brand's DT and ZT screens, and features a pop-up webcam and artful pedestal. The panel itself is reassuringly hefty, although it's a bugger to lift as the bottom of the screen has a transparent lip that cuts into your hand like a plastic machete.
Connections comprise four HDMIs (one of which is flagged 4K compatible), three USBs, inputs for Scart and component/composite video (adaptors provided), Ethernet and DisplayPort 1.2.
The latter is the first time we've seen this on a consumer TV, and can be used to deliver audio plus 4096 x 2160 at 50/60Hz. There's also an SD card reader, optical digital output for use with a soundbar and suchlike and (redundant) CI card slot. Wi-Fi is integrated.
As with the rest of Panasonic's business-class fleet, there are two Freeview HD tuners and two Freesat HD tuners. With a USB hard drive connected, you can cache live TV. The panel is Active Shutter 3D ready; two pairs of RF shuttering glasses are included in the box.
The WT600 mirrors the feature bouquet of Panasonic's Full HD crowd. There's the same Dragon powered speech tutorial and user interface, and My Home Screen is beguiling in its simplicity. The set comes with a secondary Bluetooth touchpad with integrated microphone.
Panasonic's Internet connected TVs aren't strong when it comes to catch-up though, offering just BBC iPlayer.
However, there are other diversions available, including Netflix, YouTube, iConcerts, Skype, DailyMotion and EuroSport. The VIERA Connect Market offers more, including Crunchyroll, Woomi, Vimeo and Viewster, but you'll need to create a VIERA Connect account before you can download them. There's also Facebook and Twitter for socially addicted telly addicts.
As a media player, the TV is excellent when it comes to USB. The stick reader can play most popular codecs and containers. Across a network, though, the set ignores MKVs.
Steve has been writing about AV and home cinema since the dawn of time, or more accurately, since the glory days of VHS and Betamax. He has strong opinions on the latest TV technology, Hi-Fi and Blu-ray/media players, and likes nothing better than to crank up his ludicrously powerful home theatre system to binge-watch TV shows.