Panasonic TC-P50X1 Review
The main attraction of Panasonic TC-P50X1 is, no doubt, the price, a thing that comes naturally, as this 50 inch plasma TV is an entry level product, without fancy features. While you cannot compare this Panasonic plasma TV with top of the line models, rest assured that the image quality is more than what you pay for. One would expect Panasonic TC-P50X1 to perform in the same way as a C1 model, because they share the same 720p resolution, but this is not the case; the X1 representative has better contrast ratio and more connectivity options, making it more competitive for the price. Plus, the company did not spare the effort to install the new anti-reflective screen on the X1 series, a thing that cannot be said about C1 and U1 (despite the fact that the latter has 1080p resolution).
Note: This review is brief, covering the most important aspects. For a more in-depth review of this model, you should also read Panasonic TC-P42X1 review. Both models are from the X1 series and share the same features and characteristics.
- Panel type: G12 Progressive HD PDP (older model from 2008)
- Native Resolution: 720p
- Contrast ratio: 30,000:1 (native) / 1,000,000:1 (dynamic)
- Shades of gradation: 4096
- Anti-glare filter: New AR Filter
Pros & Cons
- Solid black levels considering it is a budget HDTV
- Good price
- Decent set of features
- Uniformity issues
- Colors are not so accurate
- Mediocre at displaying standard definition content
The general performance of this plasma model is very good, especially if we take the price into consideration. Its black levels are the best seen in 2009 – sharing them with all the models released by Panasonic this year, no matter the price and level - , and this aspect counts a lot. Color accuracy has some issues, and the model even has some uniformity problems that cannot be overlooked so easily, yet, the overall picture quality is as good as it gets, for a plasma model that is sold so cheap.
No one could complain about the black levels sported by Panasonic plasma models launched over this year. They are, for now, the best out there, considering that the well known Kuro from Pioneer is no longer produced and it was the plasma TV with the best black levels ever seen. If you look for ink like black levels, then you got them: Panasonic TC-P50X1 is able to deliver. While they are completed by reliable contrast ratio, they contribute paramountly to the overall great picture quality.
The issues that mar color accuracy deal especially with green and red. As you can hardly tweak with the controls, there is not so much to do in this area. On the other hand, the dark areas are not affected by bluish or greenish tendencies, a common place in many plasma TV’s, including the models from Panasonic S1 series.
Some faint, gray lines appear noticeable on the screen when watching from a closer distance. They may not really be a burden when standing at a fair distance from the screen, but they could become a problem, so, therefore, they must be mentioned.
Having only 720p resolution, dealing with higher resolution do not deliver the same results as plasma TV’s with 1080p resolution. But Panasonic TC-P50X1 deliver good results for high definition content, with crispy clear image quality and absolutely no motion blur.
Standard definition is not a strong point for this Panasonic plasma. The objects are not rendered sharp and jaggies still appear, making from watching regular DVD’s or regular television channel only a run of the mill experience.
Glare & Reflections
The anti-reflective screen does its job, but no more. If you intend to watch your favorite programs on this plasma TV in a room brightly lit, you will still experience somewhat washed out colors, especially from extreme angles.
For a 50 inch plasma TV, coming from an entry level series, Panasonic TC-P50X1 performs quite well. With image quality that may suit a more expensive product, with quite decent features (although you cannot have THX certification or 24p cinema mode at this price), Panasonic TC-P50X1 represents a really good deal for the money spent.
Because in our experience most of the time it has the best prices on HDTV, our recommended store is Amazon.com. Do look around for the best price, but make sure you don’t skip Amazon.com or you might miss a good deal.