A great TV with built-in Freesat HD and excellent image quality, but its relatively steep price counts against it.
32in, Freesat, Freeview, analogue, 1,920×1,080 resolution, 3D: , 4x HDMI
The TX-L32G10B has an integrated Freesat HD receiver that lets you watch certain BBC and ITV programmes in HD, as well as 140 other standard definition channels, for free. As part of the Freesat specification, it also includes a network port, which will in future give you access to BBC iPlayer via the Freesat service.
Unlike other Viera models, the TX-L32G10B doesn’t include Viera Cast for access to YouTube and Picasa. It’s also missing a USB port, but the SD card slot means you can view photos from many digital cameras, listen to music or watch films stored on SD cards.
Unlike Panasonic’s sprawling plasma range, the TX-L32G10B is an LCD TV. It has 100Hz Intelligent Frame Creation (IFC) technology, which is similar to Philips’ HD Natural Motion and adds frames between the original film’s frames to smooth motion. In practice this creates the eerie impression that the Hollywood blockbuster you’re watching was filmed on a camcorder.
While more realistic, such interpolation is a matter of taste, and many people prefer to see films the way the director intended. IFC doesn’t always work perfectly either: scenes where the camera pans across closely-packed vertical lines can trip up the technology and cause blocky artefacts to appear and a shimmering effect – Philips’ HD Natural Motion can also suffer the same effects.
In our side-by-side tests, the TX-L32G10B impressed us with its bright backlight and vivid colours. The Dynamic mode produced superb contrast without any sudden transitions from dark to light. The menu doesn’t offer the advanced options you might expect at this price, but thankfully the default image quality is superb and needs little tweaking.
Our DVD tests revealed good upscaling from the original 576i source, with smooth lines and no ghosting. Connecting a laptop via HDMI required us to turn off Picture Overscan to fit the entire desktop on the screen. Annoyingly, this setting is hidden under Other Settings in the Setup menu rather than in the more obvious Picture menu. Image quality remained great no matter what we threw at the Viera, and overall, contrast was outstanding for an LCD panel.
The menu system is clear and easy to use (despite the few oddly placed settings), and the EPG is similarly clear, but much of the screen space is wasted on instructions and a large space where advertisements can be shown. This means you only see six channels at a time, and two hours in advance, with programmes bunched together so you can’t read names longer than one word. You can filter by genre or channel type, although the channel type list doesn’t split radio and TV channels.
With integrated Freesat HD, excellent image quality and a decent control system, the TX-L32G10B is superb . There is one problem, though. LG’s 37LF7700, which has Freesat HD and a larger 37in screen, costs around £70 less. It has decent image quality, too, which makes it a better choice for most people.
|Contrast ratio||Not disclosed (50,000 dynamic)|
|Stand size (WxD)||350x210mm|
|Audio outputs||optical S/PDIF out, 1x stereo phono|
|Other||headphone output, CI slot, SDHC slot|
|Tuner type||Freesat, Freeview, analogue|
|EPG||8-day, Now and Next|
|Power consumption standby||0W|
|Power consumption on||111W|
|Warranty||one year RTB|