Sport & Auto
- About Future
- Digital Future
- Cookies Policy
- Terms & Conditions
- Investor Relations
- Contact Future
This week has been great for televisual treats on TechRadar, with not one, but two Panasonic televisions scoring full marks when they were put through our rigorous testing.
And it's not all about televisions either, with some great laptops such as the HP Envy 6 and motherboards like the Asus P8H77-I on offer...
While the Panasonic P65VT50 has stood imposingly on our test benches, it's affectionately become known as the beast. Why? Because it's arguably the most uncompromising TV ever.
For starters there's its size. At 65 inches, its screen is the joint biggest in Panasonic's 2012 television range. In fact, it would be the biggest TV (as opposed to professional monitor) around from anyone had Sharp not recently launched 70-inch and 80-inch LCD TVs.
Since it uses plasma rather than LCD screen technology, the Panasonic Viera TX-P65VT50's chassis is much meatier than that of most modern TVs, too, thanks to a pretty chunky expanse of bezel by today's standards, as well as a degree of back-mauling heft that hasn't been experienced since the beefy days of the CRT. Certainly if you want to hang the Panasonic TX-P65VT50 up, you'll need a very sturdy wall.
Looks-wise, the HP Envy 6 has a distinctly Envy appearance, with a serious black finish on top and a kind of wine red underneath. It's a handsome machine, though it would look even nicer without the Beats logo (sported because it packs in Beats-branded speakers, complete with subwoofer), light-up power button and various Intel/Windows/HP stickers (though these are at least monochrome, so don't stand out too badly).
The only problem is that the brushed aluminium-look surfaces pick up fingerprints and dust to a ridiculous degree. It'll drive the more obsessive compulsive owners mad, and it's a shame because, as we said, it's a looker of a laptop otherwise.
The Intel H77 chipset is the little brother to the beefier Z77 Ivy Bridge chipset, and when we're talking about the P8H77-I we really do mean little. This is another mini-ITX board in the MiniMax range from Asus and that means it's only slightly larger than a CD.
As a H77 board it's also not going to be as feature-rich as the more advanced Z77 chipset, and there are also a few artificial restrictions put in place by Intel itself for general marketing/categorisation reasons.
The main restriction, as far as us obsessive tweakers are concerned, is the lack of any real overclocking allowed by this more mainstream chipset. That's a shame, but not really a surprise.
With Panasonic's ST50 and VT50 TVs already setting the AV world alight, is there room for the Panasonic TX-P42GT50 that sits between them? Actually yes.
The Panasonic TX-P42GT50 gets off to a great start by offering features galore by 42-inch standards. Highlights include 3D, online video/gaming/information services, an advanced version of Panasonic's very latest plasma panel design, THX endorsement and decent amounts of multimedia flexibility. There's even a Freesat tuner to accompany the Freeview one, if that floats your boat.
The real star of the Panasonic TX-P42GT50's show, though, is its picture quality, which is nothing short of outstanding - especially (though not exclusively) if you dim the lights to watch a Blu-ray movie.