If you are on the market for a 50 inch LCD with edge LED lighting, native 4K UHD, 3D capable TV with Firefox OS that doesn’t cost a arm and a leg whilst maintaining or not compromising on how it looks, then read on.
For around £900, you can bag yourself a really good TV that produces excellent picture quality and doesn’t suck – well the remote control is not the best looking, but once your eyes are set on the colourful, sharp and detailed 3840 x 160 pixels display, you will soon forget about the remote control. With Firefox OS powering the home screen, you have all the catchup TV services available at within a click or two.
Panasonic Viera TX-50CX700B Design
If you think thin UHD or even just TVs are new to the market and expect to spend a lot of money to acquire a set, then think a again because the TX-50CX700B is only 46 mm thick and 242 mm with stand, and if you can’t visualise that just by the numbers, it is as thick as 6 iPhone 6’s stacked and for a huge TV, that is pretty slick. With the stand on, you will need a slightly wider stand to accommodate it, or you can just mount it on the wall, and elsewhere you have a TV that is 1,121 mm W and 650 mm high without stand and 695 mm with stand. It weighs around 16.5 KG without stand and 17.5 kg with stand, so do take care when trying to take it out of the box.
On the back you have all the connectivity ports where you’ll find three HDMI ports, two USB 2.0 ports and one USB 3.0 port, an SD card slot and an Ethernet port, although you can also connect via WiFi to reduce cables.
Once you have everything connected and fire it up, you will notice the clean, bright and colorful user interface, thanks to the new operating system powered by Firefox. What I liked about the home screen is the ability to re-arrange the apps to you can have your frequently used apps and put them in order of priority, so if you are always watching YouTube you can put that first, although some of the popular apps can be activated directly from the remote control. Apps available includes Amazon, Freeview, BBC iPlayer, ITV, Netflix and more.
The display is very bright and looks the part, thanks to the use of backlight scanning and frame interpolation processing. Panasonic uses something called Studio Master Colour for its colour space, providing wide colour gamut phosphors – there’s also a Studio Master Drive present for it’s 4K Studio Master Processor and an edge-mounted LED lighting system that’s driven by local dimming to deliver a better contrast performance. So many TV jargons used that you probably won’t even remember which one is doing what, so feel free to ask us any questions in the comments below. Did I forget to mention the TX-50CX700B is also 3D ready? you don’t get 3D glasses with it, but you can purchase that to enjoy a little bit of 3D movies if you have that service with Sky or equivalent.
Panasonic Viera TX-50CX700B Design Performance
Besides the good speakers the 50CX700B is packing, it’s also great visually. When it comes to TVs, for me it needs to perform well when it comes to greyscale, gamma, colour, sharpness, black levels and contrast – It needs to be able to handle motion well so that. Without getting too technical, the contrast was really good and the you get a really good deep level of black colours and with it’s edgelit backlight, it’s still consistent through out. For an affordable 4K TV, it processes the shadows very well without affecting the blacks and contrasts. Upscaling HD content was also very good without losing sharpness and details, whether you are watching your own DVD content, content from your USB drive or streaming, the video quality is great. When you might see from picture quality struggle is when you play 4K content where you may notice some judder, but what you need to do is tweak the motion processing till it’s suitable for the type of content you like to watch the most.
The 50CX700B also gives you the opportunity to watch 3D contents and what I usually look out for is a seamless experience where once you pop your glasses on, you’re able to see the 3D content without blurr as much as possible and image ghosting, also known as crosstalk. It’s what happens when you remove your 3D glasses and you can see the images doesn’t make sense in that you can still make out the left and right images, your 3D glasses aligns them to make it look 3D and the rest is up to the TV depth and viewing angles. With this Panasonic TV, it does a good enough job for home use and you just need to invest in a good pair of 3D glasses to fully enjoy the experience.
Playing games requires a TV that won’t suffer from too much input lag, and the 50CX700B is very minimal that you hardly notice it, I tried this with Call of Duty and with all the quick movement left and right, jumping, turning and reacting to someone suddenly appearing to shoot you, it handles it very well.
Overall, if you are looking for an affordable 4K, 3D and 50 inch TV then look no further. With a years of expertise put into the making of this TV, you are in for a treat. You get a vivid, colourfu experience with deep blacks and contrasts, you can also add a great design that makes the TV look the part. The remote control is not the most up to date part of the design feature, but that’s not a big issue, at least you won’t be losing it.