It made its international debut at the IFA show in Berlin the other day, and yesterday Panasonic Australia had two of its new 4K Ultra HD TVs on display in Sydney.
Panasonic has chosen the 65 inch screen size for its entry into 4K Ultra HD. Matt Pearce, the Group Marketing Manager – TV at Panasonic Australia, did not rule out the possibility of a 55 inch screen model being released, but felt that the 65 inch is both the best screen size on which to display 4K Ultra HD content, and the big growth are in TV sales in the next couple of years.
Back to the TV itself. As with other Ultra HD TVs we’ve seen recently, the picture is stunning. The pixel resolution of the TV is 3840 x 2160 , an 8 megapixel image, four times the image quality of current Full HD televisions.
To delve into specs, first up, the Panasonic Viera TH-LWT65WT600A (its roll-off-the-tongue model number) is a 2000Hz backlit LED LCD TV. It uses the brand new (only announced yesterday) HDMI 2.0 specification, allowing the transfer of image and sound from the one cable of 4K images at up to a 60 frames per second. In short, HDMI 2.0 allows very high quality images and sound to be processed by the screen.
Of course what is scarce on the ground right now, and probably will be for quite some time, is 4K content. With that in mind, Panasonic has used a process it calls the Fine Remaster Engine, that will upscale Standard Definition and High Definition content to something like 4K Ultra HD quality. This includes not only broadcast and disc content, but also content played from Micro SD cards and USB-conected hard drives. The TV has 3 x USB3.o ports, and 3 x HDMI ports. Content can also be shared with the TV via iOS and Android phones and tablets. Plus with the Display Port 1.2a content can be shared from your computer, and shown at 4K Ultra HD picture quality.
The Panasonic Viera TH-LWT65WT600A is also a Smart TV with built-in Wi-Fi, a 4K Ultra HD TV web browser, 4K SD Photo Viewer, Voice Interaction, Face Recognition, and an in-built camera. In the box with the TV is a remote control and a Viera TouchPad controller, or you can dowload the Panasonic TV Remote 2 App for Android and iOS.
Price and availability
Panasonic’s TH-LWT65WT600A 4K Ultra HD TV will be in Australian stores in the third week of October. Panasonic has not yet settled the price for the TV, and will announce pricing closer to the release date.
As a guide, pricing has been announced for the US market – US$5,999.
UPDATE 2 October 2013: Panasonic has announced the Australian pricing for the Viera TH-LWT65WT600A Smart TV. It will have an RRP of $7,699 when it goes on sale later this month.