The Panasonic VIERA TC-P55GT30 is part of the mid-tier model from Panasonic. It is a much improved 55” 3D HD plasma model from the GT25 series (of last year) and is also packed with many new features that makes this crave-worthy. The TC-P55GT30 dons new looks, with black levels looking more ‘Infinite’, touts THX mode and brings you a whole new suite of Internet connectivity.
In terms of style, Panasonic has cleaned up its entire plasma line, thinning down the chassis and adding a sleek silver edge around the frame. The bezel is slimmer than before and rounded edges to match. You will notice that the speaker panel discreetly peeks out at the bottom of it. The TV sits low if on the stand which allows for a bit of swivel.
For 2011, Panasonic has decided to also certify the GT30 series with THX. Usually, the higher-end models are bestowed with feature. THX will help to achieve a more accurate color and better picture settings compared with the older models. It is also the color standard used by the movie producers. The THX setting, which is available in both 3D and 2D modes, can provide a more accurate default picture than without it.
Another notable feature is the easy to use Viera Connect. This is a big step-up for the TC-P55GT30 since it now allows you to interact with a variety of services like MLB.TV, MLS Matchday Live, NBA Game Time, NHL Game Center, Netflix, Skype and Facebook. Viera Connect also partnered up with a few fitness-related companies like Withings, Body Media, and ICON Health & Fitness, all which can interact with optional fitness gear like scales, arm monitor and exercise equipment. This sounds like a dream-crusher for couch-potatoes.
Like most Smart TV platforms, the Viera Connect will have an app store that come with free and paid apps. The only non-notable is that Panasonic did not include a web browser that’s found on some of the other Smart TVs, but makes up sufficiently with the vast array of services. This system allows you to interact with their Android-based tablet, called the Viera Tablet.
The TC-P55GT30 exhibits excellent picture quality with deep black levels and accurate colors. It features a NeoPlasma panel display model that has a 600Hz Sub-Field Drive Intelligent with 1080p lines of resolution for faster response time. This will greatly minimize Crosstalks and very good for gamers since the screen is refreshing at max speed, which is also most appropriate for 3D movies or the NHL.
This model utilizes the Active Shutter technology provides a clear separation for each eye and faster-switching phosphors to render the best picture quality with almost no crosstalks. The TC-P55GT30 also uses a unique image-analysis technology that converts motion into data to reduce after-effects. The result you’ll see has less degradation and a lot less noise.
The TC-P55GT30 showcases excellent contrast ratios with the Infinite Black Pro work together with the improved High Contrast Filter to preserve black levels in ambient light better without increasing the brightness of reflections. You’ll get smooth, natural gradation with deep rich, blacks even when viewing in bright surroundings.
From time to time, you’ll hear that jerky images are also a common complain when viewing in 3D. The TC-P55GT30 comes equip a 3D 24p Cinema Smoother which analyzes picture information in both the preceding and succeeding frames to suppress that jerky effect. You’ll enjoy life-like 3D images as the playback is smooth and natural looking.
The Panasonic TC-P55GT30 is truly a TV for the whole family to enjoy. It has features and services for the gamers, for example, Game Mode, which auto-detects the user’s intent and calibrates the TV’s settings best for gaming.
It also made watching “Megamind in 3D” highly enjoyable. Creating Titan, the new nemesis to fight the evil-villain, Megamind positions himself to save the day for the first time in his life. You and your kids will truly appreciate the 3D effects on this movie seeing how his blue hands and fingers extend out towards you as he sweeps it across your screen to fight. The bullets flying across the screen will almost make you want dodge in your seat. Every scene has so much depth when you look into the distance from the sky and back into the streets. Watching this on the TC-P55GT30 is truly amazing.
The soundtrack and sound effects sounded lively even with the built-in speakers. Voices were clear and bass reproduction, although lean, was adequate. For a more balanced sound texture you might want to consider incorporating a simple one box add-on like the ZVOX 575HSD Incredibase system.
Energy and a ‘Green’ Display
The NeoPlasma display is 25% more efficient than the previous model, although it still uses more power than LCD. The TC-P55GT30 has a lifespan of over 30 years (with 8hrs of use daily) and is also lead and mercury free.
The Panasonic TC-P55GT30 is a set with excellent picture quality and solid video processing. It is also has incredibly deep blacks and comes with a very rich variety of internet services. With almost every aspect of quality and feature improved, the TC-P55GT30 is a great choice for you if you want all the advantages of a high-end plasma TV without the premium.
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