Another key area of similarity between the 32LZD80 and 85 models is their use of Panasonic’s latest ‘V-Real’ image processing engine. V-Real 3 refines still further the already impressive previous two generations of V-Real technology, with its focus on boosting colours, contrast, fine detailing and noise suppression.
The 32LZD85 also marries up with the 32LZD80 when it comes to those key screen specifications of resolution and contrast. And so we find a Full HD resolution of 1,920 x 1,080 (this is still relatively rare in the 32in world) and an eye-catchingly high contrast ratio of 10,000:1.
This contrast ratio is not, of course, a ‘native’ one, but relies instead on a dynamic backlight arrangement – driven by part of the V-Real 3 processing engine – that dims the screen’s brightness during dark scenes to make black levels deeper and richer. Black levels have for my money been a slight weakness of some previous Panasonic LCDs, but the sophistication of the V-Real 3 engine seems such that we’ll hold out hope that it does the business today.
So, does the addition of 100Hz and Motion Focus technologies really have much of an impact on the 32LZD85’s picture quality? Actually it does. A big impact.
As you’d expect, motion looks much better. As I pan around another bizarrely bland industrial environment on my Xbox 360 version of Rainbow Six Vegas 2, for instance, the edges of the buildings scan by with scarcely a trace of smearing. What’s more, the faces of any enemies who happen to be in view retain practically all their sharpness and detailing. Or as much detailing as the game’s slightly dated-looking graphics contain, at any rate.
In other words, thanks to the 32LZD85’s various image processing technologies, pretty much every trace of LCD’s customary problems handling motion is removed. What’s more, this is achieved without causing any significant amount of unwanted image artefacts, and without ‘overcooking’ the motion-smoothing effect to the nauseatingly OTT extent seen with, say, Sharp’s first 100Hz LCDs. In other words, the 32LZD85’s pictures always look natural.