Technophile

A living room delight

Jinoy Jose P | Updated on: Nov 13, 2018
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Blending beautiful design and strong hardware, Panasonic FX800 4K Ultra HD TV offers a great video experience

In case you are waking up late, the world of televisions is exploding and in that big bang, a series of new formations are coming up, bright and light. 4K TVs are already popular and now, OLED screens are entering the market offering a stunning visual experience, and more. Panasonic’s 4K ultra HD televisions claim to bring to the table the company’s experience and expertise in producing screens for Hollywood studios. The Panasonic FX800 4K Ultra HD TV is among the latest entries to the Japanese company’s line-up of premium televisions recently launched in India (11 models of 4K LED TV starting ₹65,000 onwards).

The Panasonic FX800 4K Ultra HD TV is big and sleek (the review unit is 55 inches; weighs 28 kg without the stand). It can be mounted on the wall or be placed atop a long table. The TV sits nicely on the wall thanks to its thin form factor and well-curated design. As the name has it, the TV sports a 4K-resolution (3840 x 2160 pixels) IPS LED LCD super bright panel. The glass bezel is a beauty, adds to the design and makes handling a lot easier. The glass panels are strong and sturdy. They don’t heat up even after long hours of use so they are extremely child-friendly. The glass panel wears a mix of dark shades that tend to merge into the wall, making it look like a nice thin screen beaming video.

Powerful processor

Gone are they days when people bought TVs just for the size or looks. Now savvy users look for detailed specs, especially the processor. The FX800 is powered by Panasonic’s HCX processor, which, if you have been following tech news recently, is among one of the most-discussed chips thanks to its processing prowess. The 2018 edition of the Consumer Electronics Show saw Panasonic gaining some good press thanks to the HCX processor. Bringing the ‘Dynamic LUT’ ( or Look Up Table) technology that powers most of the post-production and broadcast studios in Hollywood to retail TVs, Panasonic, at the CES, said the HCX process that is aided by the D LUT tech would make colour reproduction in its Ultra HD LED TVs several notches better and accurate. For starters, LUT is a mathematical formula by which the processor tunes an image’s colour variables.

So, when the TV plays a video, the HCX chip monitors the average brightness automatically and tunes the picture accordingly by ‘loading’ an LUT suitable for that scene. This helps enhance scenes significantly; they look more natural with shadows and tones understanding each other fairly better than in normal conditions. The colour-rendering performance of the Panasonic FX800 4K Ultra HD TV stand testimony to the much-publicised capabilities of the HEX processor and the Hexa Chroma Drive PRO Colour Management System. The Hexa Chroma Drive PRO powers Panasonic’s brand new set of OLED (organic LED, a better, higher form of LED) televisions as well.

Made for 4K content

The Panasonic FX800 4K Ultra HD TV offers great WiFi response and optimises bandwidth usage, which helps when streaming content from services such as Netflix. We tested a 4K-UHD Netflix service and the display quality was really impressive. In fact, India faces a shortage of quality 4K content; most films available for streaming online are in HD or FHD but that scenario is changing with YouTube providing 4K content, but that would need you to have a super-fast and efficient internet connection. Most low-end smart TVs, even those that are 4K ready, fail to optimise bandwidth consumption and stream 4K or UHD content without glitches. The Panasonic FX800 4K Ultra HD TV does an impressive job on this front.

And importantly, the screen offers visuals so crisp and clear that it really doesn’t matter if you are maintaining the mandatory six-eight feet distance of viewing. Even if you sit closer, the visuals don’t appear disturbed or with noise.

The TV’s audio quality is impressive, too. Suitably prejudiced against built-in speakers in TVs, we had initially connected them to external audio systems via bluetooth, which was quite satisfactory, to be fair. But when we used the internal speakers, along with UHD content, the experience was much better. In fact, we’d recommend users ignore their external audio systems and stick to the built-in audio apparatus of the FX 800.

Easy streaming

The TV comes with a remote that has a dedicated and convenient Netflix button, like some other premium TVs in the market. The Panasonic appstore has popular streaming apps including Amazon Prime. We have not encountered any hassles in setting up any of them or playing the content. Navigation is easier and smoother, especially with Netflix and Amazon. The uniquely designed ‘home’ screen is very user friendly. It helps you avoid clutter by placing only the favourite apps on the home screen and ignoring the others.

Panasonic has designed the TV stand differently with this series of TVs, which helps the wires from getting enmeshed with each other and creating a mess. The stand helps you keep your TV station cleaner than usual. The TV has four HDMI (4K 60/50p) ports, two on the side and two on the back. It has three USB ports, which you can use to play videos and slides. One of the ports supports USB 3. There is a convenient LAN port that helps you connect the TV directly to the modem, enabling maximum, lossless speed when you stream.

Considering the performance, the Panasonic FX800 4K Ultra HD TV offers a value-for-money deal and its stunning video playback abilities and chic design can make it a good addition to your living room.

Price: ₹1,79,990

Pros: Great design, flawless video experience, sleek body, good audio

Cons: Heavy despite slim form, on-screen typing is cumbersome

Published on November 14, 2018

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