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Customer Review

142 of 150 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Absolutely Astounding! Jaw Dropping Picture Quality and a Wonderful Design, April 23, 2013
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This review is from: Panasonic TC-P55VT60 55-Inch 1080p 600Hz 3D Smart Plasma HDTV (Discontinued by Manufacturer) (Electronics)
I received my Panasonic TC-P55VT60 mid-April from Amazon. I have had a few days with it and would like to offer my thoughts.

Previously I have owned a Samsung UN55F8000 55-Inch 1080p 240Hz 3D Ultra Slim Smart LED HDTV, LG INFINIA 47LE8500 47-Inch 1080p 240 Hz Full LED Slim LCD HDTV with Internet Applications, and Samsung LN46A650 46-Inch 1080p 120 Hz LCD HDTV with Red Touch of Color. They were all very nice LCD/LED TVs but I was always upgrading for one reason or another. The VT60 is my first plasma. Having owned a small assortment of TVs I am happy to report the Panasonic VT60 trumps anything I have owned and frankly, anything I have ever seen up until this point. This TV produces the most amazing picture I have ever seen! My initial thrill has not worn off. This thing continues to impress me. The pq is absolutely phenomenal, even right out of the box!

**Hands-On Review**
TV came well packed and assembly of the stand was straightforward and incredibly simple. I do recommend you have a second person to help you. The VT60 is heavy.

Initial setup is a breeze and pretty standard. Panasonic walks you through and shows you the included features, emphasizing their different home screen options. Fun fact: there is a silly narrator that sounds like a robot. I weirdly enjoyed it, a bit of 80s/90s nostalgia. I setup mine to go straight to the last source (HDMI) as opposed to my home screen. Also, there is a goofy advertisement that pops up at times. You can however turn it off in the settings.

Panasonic includes two remotes. I am not a fan of the smaller remote. I find the touch track pad on it to be cumbersome. Not an issue for me though as I use the included standard size remote. My girlfriend however likes the track pad. To each their own. I'm sure it takes a little getting used to.

The apps work as you would expect. I haven't had a chance to check all of them out, but my time with Youtube and Netflix worked without a hitch.

The TV itself looks wonderful. The stand and full glass panel make the TV a true piece of art. The glass itself does pickup glare and reflects light. I have a 7 foot picture window that lets in a ton of light directly opposite of the VT60 but it is not unbearable. I can see the reflection of the window but it is not any worse than previous TVs I have owned. I would argue it is better than my old LG LE8500 which also had a full piece of glass. All this doesn't matter though as I do most of my watching at night.

As I previously mentioned, the picture quality on the VT60 is absolutely stunning! The hype for this set is true. The VT60 delivers on all cylinders. Inky blacks, clean whites, incredibly rich colors, jaw-dropping detail. I've been watching in the included THX Cinema modes and haven't felt the need to make any adjustments. I am no professional calibrator but I would like to make it clear this is the best picture I have ever seen. You can certainly adjust the picture to your personal preference and their is no shortage of access for professional calibration if you wish to do so.

As my first plasma, I am thoroughly impressed with the off angle viewing as well. Excellent blacks from any angle and the picture never seems to wash out or lose its integrity. There is certainly no clouding, ghosting, spotlighting, etc. to worry about. If I get unrealistically close to the screen, with my eyeball nearly touching, I can see a bit of dithering which is a function of the plasma technology. It is used to prevent color banding and create a smooth gradient. It is not distracting and I only see it when my eye nearly touches the screen. From far away I do not see it at all. It is not an issue but worth mentioning.

I can't comment on 3D quite yet as I haven't had a chance view any 3D content. I've spent most of my time with blu-rays and streaming HD. I will update my review when I get a chance to sit down with a 3D movie

I have added a few photos to the Amazon Customer Images section of Samsara [Blu-ray]on the VT60 . Pictures were taken at 1/13 F20. They closely represented what I was seeing on the screen, but I argue this still doesn't do the TV justice. The picture produced on this TV is even better in person!

Overall, the Panasonic VT60 is absolutely astounding! I highly recommend the TV and am incredibly satisfied with my purchase. The Panasonic TC-P55VT60 is worth every penny :)

**Update 4/26/13**
I wanted to update the review with a few other details after having more time with the TV

The built in speakers do not match the TVs picture quality. They are about .5" wide and are housed on either side of the TV. They run vertically. I believe the total speaker output is 20w (5w for each speaker and 10w for the built in sub). Honestly, out of all of the flat panels I have owned, the VT60 produces the best "built in" sound. That being said, I certainly recommend a better sound system if at all possible. If you are spending this much on a high-end TV, do yourself a favor and pair it with a nice home theater sound system. I realize this is not always an option, and if that is the case, the built-in speakers are adequate and do offer a decently full sound.

The camera, when you want to use it, does pop-up automatically and can be activated via the touchpad remote with voice commands. No joke, you can actually talk to your remote and the camera will pop-up. Once the camera is up, it has facial recognition and will switch to personalized home screens if you wish. You can configure different "users" as well. I don't use the feature, but it might be convenient for family members who all watch different content and might use different apps. A few things to keep in mind though. The camera is in a fixed position on top of the TV. If your seating arrangement is lower than the TV, you might not be in the best position to show up on the camera. Also, if you are like me, I keep the lighting in my home theater area to a minimum which is not the greatest lighting for the camera to pickup. The camera does pop-up, turn on, and turn off automatically but it does not retract automatically.

The TV mounts easily on the wall and looks incredible! I bought this Ultra-Slim Adjustable Tilting Wall Mount Bracket for LCD LED Plasma (Max 165L... (get it cheaper from Monoprice's website, item #5916). The cables did not interfere with mounting at all as the inputs are on the side of the TV. The power plug does come out of the back, but it doesn't stick out enough to interfere. Just be sure to plug everything in to the TV first before putting it on the wall.

Vierra Connect (apps) supports Hulu Plus and Amazon Movies. I believe Amazon even lists how to "register" the TV in the item details section of the VT60 product page.

I haven't noticed any "image retention" yet. Panasonic includes "pixel shift" and "screen wipe" features on the VT60 to help clear up Image Retention if it ever occurs. Being that it is a plasma though, I try to be cognizant of not leaving any static image on the screen too long just to be safe.

The screen does reflect light. In my experience, it is not any worse or any better than other flat-panel TVs I have owned. I recommend curtains if you are putting the TV in a window filled room.
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Showing 1-10 of 81 posts in this discussion
Initial post: Apr 23, 2013, 8:32:04 AM PDT
Last edited by the author on Apr 23, 2013, 8:36:44 AM PDT
very informative, and helpful review! I see your coming from an LED too so I'm curious if this plasma has the SOE effect? Or has a setting to turn on and off at least. I ask cause this was one of the reasons why i love LEDs. Also, people usually buy plasmas because of the amazing viewing angles compared to LEDs, so I'm glad this one doesn't suffer from that, as some reports on the F8500 I've been hearing does, which is very odd for a plasma to suffer from a bad viewing angle IMO.

Would you say the brightness on this model is brighter then some older plasmas you have seen? I heard most of the 2013 Plasmas have better brightness compared to last years sets. Have you noticed any banding? I've been reading that another brand plasma has reports of banding on some.

What about the built in camera for Skype. Have you had time to check this out yet? I hear it pops up automatically when someone calls you on Skype. Does it really do this? If it does, is there a control on the remote to make the camera pop up and down? I ask cause I use Skype a lot, so this would really come in handy for me and others that use it. The F8000 I had, I had to manually press on it which was a pain.

I'm curious to hear what you say about the 3D. I heard that this one has a much brighter 3D picture then last years. I think after reading your review, and the two reviews done by the professionals so far that say this is a "Reference" plasma, which has "better" black levels then the famous "Kuro", this may be the one I buy this year.

I also care about brand reputation and reliability, which Panasonic seems to be highly rated for, and are known to be built much better then others. I just never owned a Panny before so I can only go by what my past 8 years experience has been like dealing with another brand that I've stuck with all these years, which turned out to be a waste, so looking for something to make me have hope again and to realize that there are some good ones left out there that have better quality control, and care about their customers more and stand by what they make. Thanks for this honest review, and look forward to your updates.

Posted on Apr 23, 2013, 8:50:42 AM PDT
J. Young says:
Congrats Josh. My 65 arrives Friday. They finally posted as available on here last night!

I now know what a Samsara blu-ray is. Looks interesting with great visuals so I guess I will order it.

In reply to an earlier post on Apr 23, 2013, 9:12:48 AM PDT
Last edited by the author on Apr 23, 2013, 9:28:35 AM PDT are the built in speakers? Has anyone seen Panasonic's new flagship models, the ZT series of Plasmas? They are supposed to have even deeper blacks and better resolution than this new VT series model.

In reply to an earlier post on Apr 23, 2013, 9:20:18 AM PDT
PsychDoc says:
" are the built in speakers?"
+1 I'm also very interested in this so any information you could provide would be very much appreciated.

Posted on Apr 23, 2013, 2:26:40 PM PDT
How does the VT60 compare to the F8000? I'm thinking about getting an F8000, but this year's plasmas are very tempting. I've seen both in Best Buy, but the comparison was very tough to make as the F8000 was on the showroom floor running BB promos while the VT60 was in the Magnolia room looping a scene from The Avengers.

In reply to an earlier post on Apr 23, 2013, 3:38:00 PM PDT

Your not the first person that noticed this. I've read on the AVS that Sears has the F8000 set up only showing the Samsung Demo of Angry birds, while all the other TVs are showing other content. That's very strange to hear that even Best Buy is doing this only with the Samsung F8000. Did you see the F8500 plasma?

In reply to an earlier post on Apr 23, 2013, 4:02:29 PM PDT
Last edited by the author on Apr 23, 2013, 4:02:57 PM PDT
Josh Zastrow says:
I originally bought the F8000 from BB and I returned it a week later. There was a lot I didn't like. Honestly, viewing from any other angle other than dead center was sub par, colors began to wash out and blacks look grey. There was "spotlighting" in all four corners which is a product of most every edge lit set. Also, there was auto dimming which changed the brightness/contrast on the fly and it was very noticeable. It could be turned off but remained on if certain useful features were enabled. Hated it. Finally, the biggest thing for me, the F8000 couldn't even come close to the black levels of the VT60. It tries to with the annoying processing features I mentioned but even then falls way short.

I can't recommend the VT60 enough. It surpasses the F8000 in every way. Source: I have owned both.

Posted on Apr 23, 2013, 4:23:31 PM PDT

No way dude! The F8000 is the best Edge lit LED ever! Its the closest edge lit ever to OLED! It looks like its a "Full Array" true Local Dimmer! How could you return it for a Panasonic? I don't see this Samsung as a verified purchase, so you must be lying! You never owned the F8000. How dare you speak like that about it! Haha!
Just playing man.. This is the same experience I had with the set as well, and was attacked for my review of it. Lol!

In reply to an earlier post on Apr 23, 2013, 4:33:47 PM PDT
Josh Zastrow says:
@Steve Douglas
I was impressed with the small built in speakers. They are about .5" wide and are housed on either side of the TV. They run vertically. I believe the total speaker output is 20w (5w for each speaker and 10w for the built in sub). Honestly, out of all of the flat panels I have owned, the VT60 produces the best built in sound. That being said, I certainly recommend a better sound system if at all possible, but I realize this is not always an option.

The TV offers a few pre-configured sound modes (standard, ambient, music, and custom). You can make adjustments to bass, treble, balance, etc. There is also a volume leveling option and a function for "digital remaster" of the sound. You can tweak the built in sound to your liking.

The sound from the built-in speakers is full and encompassing, especially compared to previous TVs I have owned. There are not as "tinny" and flat as most flat panel speakers tend to be. I usually run my content through a beefy sound system but I did spend at least a full day using the built in speaker before I had everything setup and they are certainly adequate. Definitely better than most.

In reply to an earlier post on Apr 23, 2013, 4:46:09 PM PDT
Josh Zastrow says:

Thanks for giving an honest review of the F8000, I never got around to it. Sorry people didn't want to hear of its shortcomings. I am impartial to brands but I am certainly partial to quality. The F8000 was lackluster, especially for the price. The extremely thin bezel was the most beautiful thing about it, however, you do not watch content on the bezel ;) Even my old LG LE8500 (wished I never got rid of it) trumped the F8000.

The VT60 outperforms the F8000 in absolutely every way and then some. Period.
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