Panasonic TX-48AS640: 3D Picture Quality
The 48AS640 is a mixed bag with 3D. In the plus column the amount of detail evident with 3D Blu-rays is strong, clearly illustrating the difference between its active and rival passive 3D systems. There’s no jaggedness or line noise around contoured edges or over small bright objects, either.
Pictures looks bright, colourful and naturally toned despite the dimming effect of the active shutter glasses too, and the sense of depth is nicely handled thanks to the combination of the brightness with some good contrast handling.
However, pictures suffer quite conspicuously with crosstalk double ghosting noise over objects in the mid and far distance.
We also felt more aware of the flickering of the active shutter glasses than we often do these days, especially if we tried to watch 3D with any light in the room. And finally the need to drive the picture quite brightly for 3D means that during dark scenes you can sometimes clearly see the backlight clouding noted – but avoidable – with 2D viewing.
Panasonic TX-48AS640: Sound Quality
The 48AS640 is a fairly average audio performer. It hits good volumes without starting to sound excessively harsh or causing the built-in speakers to phut and distort; there’s a decent amount of treble detail in the mix too, which makes soundtracks feel lively and complex; and vocals remain decently clear even during loud action scenes.
However, bass is practically non existent, which leaves action scenes sounding thin and one-dimensional.
Other things to consider
We’re not great fans of the smart remote Panasonic ships with the 48AS640. It’s a little too short of buttons, and nor do we like the responsiveness of the circular touch pad at its heart. We question, too, the wisdom of making the track pad area circular when you’ll be using it to navigate a rectangular screen.
If you’re a keen gamer, meanwhile, the 48AS640 is only a middling option. This is because we measured its input lag – the time it takes to produce its pictures – at 65ms rather than the sub-40ms we like to see. Note, too, that this figure was only achieved by turning off every bit of processing we could find, including the Adaptive Backlight system.
Should I buy a Panasonic TX-48AS640?
Unless you’re a serious 3D fan then the 48AS640 is a serious temptation. It offers more in terms of both features and HD picture quality than you’ve a right to expect of an £750 48-inch TV, and it looks very pretty while it’s doing it.
Anther attractive option to consider at around this part of the market is the Sony 50W829, which offers slightly better all-round pictures but far less extensive smart features.
In what’s been a rather hit and miss year for Panasonic LCD TVs, so long as you’re not a massive 3D fan the 48AS640 is a definite hit.
Next, check out our pick of the Best TVs
Score in detail
3D Quality 6
Smart TV 9
2D Quality 9
Sound Quality 6