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Panasonic's My Home Screen interface provides an inspired way for even the most technophobic of users to find their way around the array of content sources it places at your disposal.
The preset hubs are presented cleanly and thought through logically, but where the system really comes into its own is with the way it allows you to set up your own smart hubs. These are remarkably easy to build, and essentially allow you and other members of your family to create individual, personalised smart hubs containing links to only the apps and video services that each individual uses most.
This is a great way of streamlining your way to content, and it's backed up by a really straightforward and comprehensive initial installation system.
Panasonic also deserves praise for its Viera Remote app for Android and iOS devices, since as well as providing a neat alternative control system this adds some genuinely useful functionality, such as the streaming of video from the TV to your smart device.
While the P42ST60 handles smart content exceptionally well, it's not quite as effective with its picture and audio set-up menus. These are a bit bland and long-winded. Though on the upside, of course, aside from setting up separate day and night modes to adapt pictures to the different brightness levels of your living room, you won't often have to revisit these menus following your first installation.
While the P42ST60 might not be especially pretty, its large bulk by modern TV standards does help it produce an above average audio performance. There's a decent amount of bass to underpin the mix, and the mid-range is quite broad, leaving plenty of room for the soundstage to expand when required by action scenes. The only weakness is that trebles sound muted relative to the bass end of the spectrum, leaving sound mixes a little short of detail.
You can, of course, get plenty of 40-42-inch TVs for considerably less than £740 these days. What you can't readily find for that sort of money, though, is picture quality as natural, rich and above all cinematic as that delivered by the P42ST60.
In fact, the set essentially offers you what would by most TV standards be premium picture quality at a mid-range price.
Should you think about spending more to get to Panasonic's P42GT60? If you can afford it then we'd say yes – especially if you're a 3D fan. If £750 really is your maximum, however, then the P42ST60 is very hard to resist.
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.