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Panasonic Viera TX-P37X10 37in Plasma TV review

John Archer

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Summary

Our Score:

8

User Score:

With Pioneer's plasma business officially down the toilet, and (refuted) rumours recently that LG was thinking of ditching plasma too, Panasonic probably doesn't know what to do with itself right now.

Should it punch the air in glee at the death of some serious competition to its plasma business, or should it be seriously concerned that the plasma technology it's championed and invested in for so long just isn't what mainstream punters want any more?

Not knowing the answer to this question may explain the extraordinary breadth of Panasonic's new TV range. For it incorporates no less than eight new series of products, taking in LCD as well as plasma technology, covering a vast amount of features (including some really interesting new stuff on the higher-end models), and satisfying a really broad range of price points.

In other words, either Panasonic is feeling so confident it thinks it can try its hand at anything, or else it's doesn't quite know where to focus its efforts going forward, and is hoping that the public will help them make the right choices based on whatever sells well from the massive new product range.

With all this in mind, and with more pressure than ever on Panasonic's shoulders to fly the plasma flag, it's perhaps a bit disappointing to discover that the first TV from the new line-up we've been sent isn't one of the brand's flagship models, but rather a model from the X10 range - a range that sits only one rung up from the very bottom of the latest Panasonic TV pile.

But before I get too deflated, the 37in TX-P37X10's relatively low-end status means it might well turn out to be one of the brand's most mass-market propositions. After all, we've already found it online for under £600 - a very aggressive price point for a hot-off-the-presses telly from a respected brand.

The P37X10's price focus is reflected in the TV's design, it has to be said. It's glossy enough to not actually be ugly, but it isn't slim enough, stylish enough or curvaceous enough to stand out in any significant way from today's insanely crowded shelves.

Things look up a bit with the TV's connections, though. For its budget price hasn't stopped it entertaining three HDMIs - one down the side - together with a D-Sub PC port and even an SD card slot. This SD slot is limited to JPEG playback rather than also handling MP3s and AVCHD/MPEG video files, but frankly, it's nice to find any sort of SD support from Panasonic at this price level.

Not surprisingly, the P37X10's feature count doesn't include anything particularly new or ‘fancy'. But it's not wholly without interest. For instance, 100Hz is on hand to double the frame rate and thus, hopefully, reduce flickering over edges and judder.

The screen also claims a startling 2,000,000:1 dynamic contrast ratio - the ‘dynamic' bit referring to an Eco mode that can dim the image's brightness output automatically in response to the ambient light conditions in your room. Worth a mention, too, are a basic colour management mode and a noise reduction system.

Greg Lisowski

March 11, 2009, 6:42 pm

Well what a surprise to read a poor report on a 37" plasma TV from Panasonic.Is the old 37PX80B a better TV ?


All the best Greg.

monolith

April 21, 2009, 1:16 am

Dear Trusted review, please answer the above question, is the new model which you rate comparatively poorly better than the old model? I'm so frustrated as this is the only question noone seems to answer!

ET

June 24, 2009, 4:25 pm

Dear TR, dear John,


Like the 2 postings above I am confused about the quality of the new model Panasonic Viera TX-P37X10: Is the old 37PX80 a better TV, given that last year it received a higher score than the 37X10? or would the old 37PX80 have to be demoted from 9/10 last year e.g. to 7/10 nowadays in view of its older technology? Or is it still absolutely better than its successor 37X10? (in spite of lower contrast 1:15.000 instead of 1:20.000, Vreal3 instead of VReal4 etc.) as Toby Jugg said in his posting on the 42X10 on 29th April 2009 ("I have just got one of these after a 42px80b so can compare the two directly. My Girlfriend has a 37px8ba. The x10 appears to be a small downward step for anyone who is mainly viewing SD" - like myself- as "the brightness appears to have suffered" further in spite of this being Pana's main weakness)


Could you kindly enlighten us on this as I have to buy a new TV within the next 3 days!


Thank you for an early reply!


Thorsten

Greg Lisowski

June 29, 2009, 7:53 pm

Still no reply from my first comment.Too busy or too "don't want to get involved"


It would be nice to get a professional reply to this question as I see on other forums it is also a concern of many other lay persons such as my self ! Do tell us the difference between the 37PX80 and the 37x10.In your opinion of course...(you do get paid to make one)..All the best Greg.

Ed

June 29, 2009, 10:07 pm

Or just didn't notice. We may be paid to write opinions but not to endlessly browse all our old reviews for new comments. I'll get onto John to see if he has some further thoughts.

Greg Lisowski

July 30, 2009, 10:50 pm

Well Ed ! still no reply ? Time for another reminder eh !..

judy seymour

August 17, 2009, 1:53 am

i would like to know your answer to this question as im undesided as to which panasonic tv to buy aswell. i know i want a 37inch screen.its mainly to watch sport and conect my ps2 and play motor racing games

sunsetdream

August 20, 2009, 6:54 pm

Bump the question, I also would like to know the (professionals) opinions. Which TV is the better buy & why?

JP

September 19, 2009, 10:36 pm

I own both models (37px80 and 37x10). I know my stuff and work as a professional with displays, colors etc.


Last week I tested them both, side by side with the same sources to get the most accurate comparison. Because I too was a little suprised to see the lower marks for the newer model 37x10.


The bottom line so far :


37x10 is a bit better in displaying contour lines around subjects, has better (deeper) blacks). Brightness is more or less the same compared to the 37px80 ( eco mode off ).


The 37x10 is by no means worse than it's predecessor 37px80. It's even slightly better!





The 37x10 got "only" an 8 for picture quality. The 37px80 a year ago an 9.


I think this is correct,if we look at the changing times : blue ray and a the over-hyped demand for a lott of resolution. Last year, the 37px80 was the best choice due to "worser" other models. The 9 for picture quality is correct.





This year there are enough high quality displays which have beter pixel-per-pixel resolution ( full hd). And if someone want high resolution, the 37x10 will not be totally satisfying. So if you have to decide = honestly = what to give for picture qualitiy, I would give the 37x10 a 9 for sd ( broadcating / dvd ) and an 8 for blu-ray because blu-ray will reveal more detail at a full hd plasma. So....





For the normal crowd - broadcasting & dvd's - the 37x10 is a perfect machine which will give you deep blacks, no noise, no backlight bleeding, good motion and good contrast and will be satisfying you till the Amoled tv's are mature and affordable.





I will post my side-by-side review later and will explain the differences technically.





Hopefully it will clear up some things for some people.

JP

October 3, 2009, 3:31 am

If anyone is interested..some figures between the x10 en px80 :





First.


There is indeed a difference in brightness when using test patterns.


White (relative)


px80 = 100


x10 = 75


Grey (relative)


px80 = 100


x10 = 70


Indeed the px80 seems brighter and it really is...Only at test patterns and large white areas.





Now this is a bummer. Or not ?





In my previous post I stated that I saw almost none difference in picture quality side by side.


The second measurements whre done on real life pictures, dvd and sd-broadcasting.


Of course, this is a whole other matter while the "translation" of the movie is very - very- important. For example : grey. Is the translation lighter or darker.


To be short, I measured a lot : faces, white areas (clouds, etc), grey jackets etc.etc.


Conclusion : no difference in light-output...same figures, same picture. And that's a rather strange conclusion, regarding the lower light output of the 3710 on the test patterns.


It looks like that the 37x10 has limited it's power supply when displaying large white areas. If that's a good thing, I don't know, but explaining the lower power needs. In real life picture it ios not a big thing. Only advertisements have often large white areas.





Last note :


The colors seemed to improve over time. I know find the colors of the 37x10 better than the px80. Also contrast and blacks are a little better. Out of the box ( first days ) it is not so good, and I reaaly hope reviewers have judged this display after a good amount of hours playing.





Conclusion so far : both tv's are ok and almost identical in displaying real life pictures.





More to come.


( blacks, contrast )

JP

October 15, 2009, 1:23 am

Final verdict





It is actually almost a hypothetically question : should I by an 37px80 or the newer 37x10. The old px80 is very hard to find these days.


But for the record, here it goes.





I watched hours and hours dvd's and tv at 576p, 1080p etc.


I even callibrated the two displays.





To be short :


Blacks : 100% x10 , 98% px80


Contrast : 100 % x10 , 98% px80


Colors : cinema warm, same except for some dynamic approach of the newer x10. Px80 has more natural colors.


Noise : slightly better on the x10, logically due to lack of brightness


Brightness : depending on the signal (567p or 1080p) : px80 is clearly the winner.





The Panasonic technician told me after some pressure, that teh x10 had a different coating and the z10 should have better "contours".





Brightness : there is the problem for the x10


x10


The x10 has a more dynamic approach. Mode normal shows far more "pop" than the px80 in mode normal. To be honest, the dynamic-mode of the px80 came close to the normal-mode of the x10.


Interesting is that peak-brightness can be very high, even higher than the px80.


But when the total amount of white areas ( or better , lighter areas needing power) are over - say - 30 %, the x10 shows a muted picture. Like if it lacks power to catch up with the needed Amp's.





px80


The px80 can display a good white area without muting the picture. The difference is striking at scenes like beaches, nature movies, landscape sceneries etc.





My conclusion is that the px80 is the better display, compared to the x10. The difference in blacks, contrast, noise is almost non-excisting. But lack of brightness is almost unforgiving, especially in these days when plasma must compete with the very bright lcd displays.


In my opinion the x10 is still a very good display but panasonic should not have lowered the power consumption, at the cost of brightness. I happyly would have paid some more money to keep the brightness. Now it's almost they crippled the x10 to save some bucks at he power supply.


In my case : I will keep the px80.





Last note : applaus for John Archer !


The review was spot-on. Excellent balcks and contrast, but lack of brightness in some scenes ! Therefore the 8 for image quality is correct and the px80 is the better allrounder for the living room.

Greg Lisowski

October 15, 2009, 2:32 pm

Thank you for your very informative review.It sounds like you had great time doing your review.A near labour of love experience I think.Thanks again JP ! .May I just ask who you are as you do seem to have a great deal of indepth knowledge. Thanks again JP.


All the best Greg.

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