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Panasonic TX-55JZ2000 Review

Verdict

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The Panasonic JZ2000 is a gorgeous high-end OLED TV that doesn’t just thrill with movies, but plays nice with next-gen games consoles, too, thanks to 4K 120fps support and VRR. Its pro-style OLED panel is still class-leading, and a new AI processor makes getting great results easier than ever. Frustratingly expensive it may be, but it’s undeniably fabulous too.

Pros

  • Delicious, dynamic imagery
  • Dolby Vision IQ, HDR10+ Adaptive support
  • 360-degree Soundscape Pro audio system
  • 4K/120fps HDMI inputs

Cons

  • Pricey
  • Sound system may be unnecessary for AV fans

Key Features

  • Dolby Vision IQ, HDR10+ Adaptive, HDR10, HLG, HLG PhotoSupports all of the HDR formats currently available
  • Filmmaker modeFilmmaker mode offers the TV’s most accurate picture mode
  • 125W Dolby Atmos sound systemBuilt-in Atmos system capable of firing sound above and to the sides

With the JZ2000, Panasonic has partnered its Master HDR OLED Professional Edition panel with an all-new AI processor – and with spectacular results. Then, for good measure, it’s added extra side speakers to its Dolby Atmos sound system for even greater immersion. You may never feel the need to go to the cinema again…

The JZ2000 is the latest Panasonic flagship to be built around its Master HDR OLED Professional Edition panel, which has been engineered to deliver a higher average picture level than regulation OLED screens.

It’s an update on the HZ2000, and looks much like its predecessor. It has the same dark grey livery, Technics-branded front-facing speaker bar, and upfiring Dolby Atmos height speakers mounted high on the back panel.

But make no mistake, this is a significantly upgraded model, with a number of distinguishing features. Finally, there’s support 4K 120FPS gaming, courtesy of HDMI 2.1, and it also boasts the first big AI upgrade for Panasonic’s tinsel-town inflected HCX processor.

Availability

  • UKRRP: £2699
  • USAunavailable
  • EuropeRRP: €2999
  • Canadaunavailable
  • Australiaunavailable

The Panasonic JZ2000 comes in 55- and 65-inch screen sizes, the TX-55JZ2000 and TX-65JZ2000. We have the smaller of the two on test. They’re priced at £2699 and £3499 respectively, which puts them in low earth orbit (the kind of place you’ll find Branson and Bezos) when it comes to affordability.

There’s no North American equivalent to the JZ2000, as Panasonic pulled out of the TV market stateside some time ago.

  • Built-in Dolby Atmos sound system
  • Swivel pedestal stand
  • Premium remote control

Considering just how many speakers are built into the Panasonic JZ2000’s cabinet, it’s remarkable that this set looks as svelte as it does. The gun-metal grey bezel is almost inconsequential, effortlessly blending with the forward-facing speaker array. In addition to the upward-firing height speakers on the rear panel, there are now two matching side-firing enclosures, too. Panasonic dubs this new seven-channel configuration 360º Soundscape Pro.

Connectivity is a step up from last year’s Panasonic models. Two of the four HDMI inputs are v2.1-enabled for High Frame Rate 4K/120HZ video. There’s also eARC, VRR (Variable Refresh Rate) and ALLM (Auto Low Latency Mode) Game mode support.

Connectivity on the Panasonic TX-55JZ2000

In addition, there’s a trio of USB ports, a digital optical audio output and Ethernet to back-up Wi-Fi and Bluetooth. The latter now supports dual connectivity, so you can partner up for private listening late at night. 

The screen sits on a neat circular pedestal stand with swivel action, so you can tweak the angle of view to suit your seating arrangements.

The remote handset is festooned with buttons, including shortcuts for Netflix, Rakuten TV and Prime Video, but it’s nicely finished with a brushed metal effect, and feels good to wield.

Remote control for Panasonic TX-55JZ2000
  • Improved My Home Screen smart platform
  • Low input lag
  • Freeview Play for catch-up and boxsets

While Panasonic has opted for Android on some of its lower-end models, its proprietary My Home Screen remains in place here, now in its 6.0 incarnation. The good news is the brand has dramatically improved the user experience.

Redesigned menu bar on Panasonic TX-55JZ2000 OLED

It still launches with customisable Home buttons, but there’s greatly enhanced menu navigation and content curation. A My Scenery Gallery doesn’t just run JPEGs; it also has the option of gently moving videos, such as a star field for when you’re feeling particularly chilled.

Naturally, there’s voice control with Google Assistant and Alexa, too.

My Home Screen 6.0 on Panasonic TX-55JZ2000

The set also comes with Freeview Play, which guarantees all your mainstream catch-up TV needs will be covered (BBC iPlayer, ITV Hub, All4, My5, UKTV Play and so on). This opens the door to a huge selection of boxsets, too.

The streaming app selection covers Netflix, Amazon Prime, BritBox and Rakuten TV, but there’s no Disney+.

Input lag is on the right side of winning. We measured it at 14.5ms (1080/60), which is more than good enough to keep keen gamers alive longer.

  • All-new HCX Pro AI processor
  • Master HDR OLED Professional Edition

The big new deal on the JZ2000 is AI processing. Panasonic has lagged behind rivals when it comes to AI and deep learning, but this year its HCX processor graduates with honours. The level of fine detail and sublime colour gradation this new silicon delivers is thrilling. HD upscaling is also first-class.

You won’t need to do much to see this set look its best, either. An Auto AI mode does most of the heavy-lifting, auto-optimising both sound and vision to match whatever you’re watching.

Panasonic goes all out when it comes to HDR compliance. There’s Dolby Vision IQ and HDR10+ Adaptive, both of which use an onboard sensor to adjust the image based on ambient lighting conditions.

Panasonic has made it clear to us that it isn’t sourcing a variant of LG Display’s Evo panel here, and is instead following the path taken on previous panel iterations. This seems a wise move, since this panel more than holds its own, offering brighter, intense peak HDR highlights than its LG rival.

Zack Snyder's Justice League on Panasonic TX-55JZ2000

We measured HDR peak brightness, within a 5% window using the Normal picture mode, at more than 900 nits. Opting for Dynamic garners around 950 nits.

With a larger 10% measuring window, HDR peaks fall to around 830 nits. It should be remembered that the kind of specular highlights that stand out in a movie or TV show are usually small and intense, and this plays into Panasonic’s design.

As is Panasonic’s wont, fine colour tuning comes via Hollywood colourist Stefan Sonnenfeld.

There’s a richness to the set’s colour performance; it’s vibrant without ever looking overcooked. Only the over-saturated Dynamic setting goes a tad too far.

  • Dolby Atmos 360º Soundscape Pro

Of course, the Panasonic JZ2000 isn’t just about top-class imagery. Its Dolby Atmos sound system is unusually elaborate, and on this model benefits from a Space Tune auto audio-calibration routine to help set up. A mic built into the set measures a series of multi-frequency sonic bursts.

The extended performance of 360° Soundscape Pro works really well. You get convincing Dolby Atmos height effects, while the new side-firing drivers extend width. The latter really enhances the overall listening experience, making for a much wider cinematic soundstage. 

Dolby Atmos sound system on Panasonic TX-55JZ2000

The sound is gutsy, too, with 125W of amplification more than ready for blockbuster action.

Tuning fidelity is courtesy of Technics, which goes some way to justifying its superb articulation and dialogue clarity.

Should you buy it?

You want to cover all HDR bases, and see movies as the director intended With Dolby Vision IQ and HDR10+ Adaptive, you can be sure the JZ2000 will maximise the performance of its OLED panel. It’s designed to work with, rather than around, leading dynamic HDR standards…

You Play games more than you watch movies or TV The JZ2000 may have HDMI 2.1 inputs, but if gaming is your main interest, then a LED-based screen will remove any fear of image retention from long gaming sessions…

Final Thoughts

Panasonic has pulled out all the stops with the JZ2000, and the result is a sumptuous 4K viewing experience. Picture quality is class-leading – we’re really impressed with the set’s HCX Pro AI processor, which manages to deliver extraordinary nuance and detail. And that Master HDR OLED Professional Edition certainly warrants all the fancy sobriquets. If you want to see what a movie looks like in a mastering suite, this is probably as close as you’ll ever get.

The new 360° Soundscape Pro iteration of its Dolby Atmos sound system is also quite a performer. This TV sounds larger, wider, more exciting than any 55-incher has a right to sound.

Overall, we reckon the TX-55JZ2000 warrants its ridiculous price tag – because it’s ridiculously good. This is unequivocally the best OLED TV Panasonic has ever made.

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FAQs

What HDR formats does the Panasonic JZ2000 support?

All of them: HDR10, HDR10+, HDR10+ Adaptive, HLG, HLG Photo, Dolby Vision and Dolby Vision IQ.

Should I pair a soundbar with the Panasonic JZ2000?

With its built-in Atmos system a soundbar isn’t a requirement to go with this TV

Is there a 48-inch version of the Panasonic JZ2000?

No, the Panasonic JZ2000 only comes in 55- and 65-inch sizes.

Specs

UK RRP
USA RRP
EU RRP
CA RRP
AUD RRP
Manufacturer
Screen Size
Weight
Operating System
Release Date
Model Number
Model Variants
Resolution
HDR
Types of HDR
Refresh Rate TVs
Ports
HDMI (2.1)
Audio (Power output)
Connectivity
Colours
Display Technology

Jargon buster

OLED

Organic Light Emitting Diode is panel technology that allows each individual pixel to produce light rather than relying on a backlight. This enables the screen to accurately display blacks by turning off the pixel, resulting in improved contrast compared to conventional LCD panels.

HDR10+

HDR10+ is a HDR variant created by 20th Century Fox, Panasonic and Samsung as a free to use, open platform alternative to Dolby Vision. Like Dolby Vision, it adds dynamic metadata on top of the core HDR10 signal that tells a TV how it should adjust the brightness, colours and contrast of content for the most optimal picture quality.

Dolby Atmos

Dolby Atmos is an object-based audio format. It expands on 5.1 and 7.1 soundtracks by adding overhead channels. Sounds are referred to as “audio objects”, of which there can be up to 128 audio channels, and these ‘objects’ can be accurately positioned within a 3D soundscape. This allows soundtracks that support the technology to place sounds above and around the listener with compatible kit.

Dolby Vision IQ

Dolby Vision IQ is an advanced version of the standard Dolby Vision signal. It uses the metadata within its own HDR signal in conjunction with a TV’s light sensor to detect how bright or how dark a room is in order to optimise the picture quality so content retains consistent luminance (brightness) and detail no matter how bright or dark the room is.

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