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Panasonic TX-L47ET60B review

This good-looking 47-inch TV ups the smart stakes and puts 3D back on easy street

Panasonic TX-L47ET60B

Our Verdict

The Panasonic TX-L47ET60B isn't as good as its plasmas. This LED-backlit LCD TV, however, is just as good as its real rivals - and probably better.

For

  • Passive 3D
  • My Home Screen
  • Build quality and design
  • True Cinema
  • Upscaling

Against

  • Only two pairs of 3D glasses
  • High price
  • Black levels
  • Middling contrast
  • Poor sound

Panasonic isn't the only major TV manufacturer to almost completely forget about 3D TV this year. Despite having 3D gubbins inside, there's barely a mention of it in the specs for the Panasonic TX-L47ET60B. Instead, Panasonic's lineup for 2013 is all about big screens and smart TV, and this 47-inch TV is a great example of both.

If 2012 was the year this plasma-obsessed manufacturer embraced LED backlighting, this year its new love is passive 3D, which now completely dominates its LCD TVs.

As well as the 'easy' 3D system and a Full HD IPS panel, the Panasonic TX-L47ET60B features new smart TV features, notably a My Home Screen function that's home to apps, browser shortcuts and other widgets, and customisable to multiple users.

Most viewers will have a tablet or at least a smartphone, Panasonic reckons, which explains its new Apple AirPlay-esque idea Swipe & Share 2.0, an app-based feature that sees two-way file exchanges between the TV and your smart devices.

Panasonic TX-L46ET60B review

The slim silver bezel and transpatent lip give an effect of lightness

Looks-wise the Panasonic TX-L47ET60B is on the money. A silver bezel that's barely 8mm slim (plus another 2mm gap between it and the screen) is impressive, as is its overall depth of just 35mm.

From being a manufacturer that was regularly a year behind the zeitgeist in design terms, the Panasonic TX-L47ET60B now represents one of the best-looking mid-range TVs around. A transparent lip at the bottom of the screen adds a further touch of lightness, though the squared-off corners could be judged a little harsh.

However, the build quality is excellent - peerless, even, in this commodity market - and far above average for the £1,100 (around US$1,662 / AU$1,596) price. We don't suppose gloss black will become particularly hard to find in 2013, but it's good to see it taking a back seat on this, one of the first of Panasonic's new flatscreen TVs for spring.

Panasonic TX-L47ET60B review

The TX-L47ET60B shows Panasonic catching up in design terms

Also available

The ET60 Series, of which the Panasonic TX-L47ET60B is a member, constitutes the third rung of the Japanese manufacturer's lineup for 2013. As well as the Panasonic TX-L47ET60B, it comes in three other guises, the 42-inch Panasonic TX-L42ET60B, 50-inch Panasonic TX-L50ET60B and 55-inch Panasonic TX-L55ET60B.

Above it in Panasonic's LED-backlit LCD TV sector are the 55-inch Panasonic TX-L55DT65 and 60-inch Panasonic TX-L60DT65, which add voice interaction and recognition - each time you switch on the TV, no less - plus a dual-core Hexa Processing Engine.

Also higher up the range is the flagship 47-inch Panasonic TX-L47WT65 and the 55-inch Panasonic TX-L55WT65, which boast Clear Panel Pro, voice interaction and so-called 'Infinite Contrast'.

Panasonic's new plasmas for 2013 - the VT65 Series and 'reference level' ZT65 Series - are also worth bearing in mind.

Jamie Carter

Jamie is a freelance tech, travel and space journalist based in the UK. He’s been writing regularly for Techradar since it was launched in 2008 and also writes regularly for Forbes, The Telegraph, the South China Morning Post, Sky & Telescope and the Sky At Night magazine as well as other Future titles T3, Digital Camera World, All About Space and Space.com. He also edits two of his own websites, TravGear.com and WhenIsTheNextEclipse.com that reflect his obsession with travel gear and solar eclipse travel. He is the author of A Stargazing Program For Beginners (Springer, 2015),