Pana­sonic TX-50CS520

What Hi-Fi (UK) - - Televisions -

Pana­sonic’s re­vival con­tin­ues apace with this re­mark­able achieve­ment for the money

Of­ten we ag­o­nise for days over the fi­nal out­come of a group test. The en­tire What Hi-fi? team locks it­self in a room and bick­ers un­til smoke comes out the chim­ney. Okay, maybe that’s ex­ag­ger­at­ing a bit, but ar­riv­ing at a ver­dict and de­cid­ing on a win­ner is some­times a tricky process. Not this time, how­ever. The clear win­ner for us is the out­stand­ing Pana­sonic TX 50CS520.

Af­ter an un­sta­ble 2014,the last year has seen the Ja­panese com­pany climb back up the tele­vi­sion man­u­fac­turer food­chain, and what they have achieved with the TX 50CS520 is se­ri­ously im­pres­sive for the money.

It wasn’t that the Pana­sonic wasn’t pushed hard ei­ther, and it had some very able com­pe­ti­tion in the Philips 40PFT6550 and the Fin­lux 43UT3E310B T. The of­fer­ing from Philips is flawed, but over­all it still puts out the se­cond-best video per­for­mance of this bunch, thanks to ex­cel­lent sharp­ness and good con­trast.

We are very im­pressed by the amount of fea­tures on the Fin­lux – es­pe­cially its 4K com­pat­i­bil­ity – but we feel there are too many flaws to ig­nore, chief of which is its poor shadow de­tail.

Lastly, and in this case, most def­i­nitely leastly, we have the Hi­tachi – or rather the Hi­tachi-branded of­fer­ing from a Turk­ish man­u­fac­turer. This dis­ap­points in too many de­part­ments to rec­om­mend, even at the low price. It’s a shame, be­cause we were hop­ing for some­thing spe­cial. Back to the draw­ing board it is.

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