The Panasonic 2019 AV range has eight TV models, three soundbars, thee headphones, two microsystems, an entry-level Blu-ray player and a partridge in a pear tree…
The Panasonic 2019 AV range is large enough to cater for most AV needs. The focus this year is ‘Hollywood to your home.’
Gadgeteer and AV expert Thomas Bartlett attended the launch and will report separately on what excited him (and he is not easily excitable). This is an overview of the launch, prices and availability.
4K OLED – Good, better and best (GZ1000, GZ1500 and GZ2000)
The Panasonic Australia OLED website reveals that all 2019 OLED TVs will have a GZxxxx and 2018 has
All three models feature Panasonic’s
- HCX PRO processor
- HDR10+ (Panasonic and Samsung use this nomenclature), HLG, HLG Photo
- Dolby Vision and Dolby Atmos
- Hollywood colourist tuning
- Wi-Fi and Bluetooth
- My Home Screen 4.0 smart TV operating system works with Google Assistant and Amazon Alexa
The GZ2000 adds what it calls a ‘professional edition’ OLED panel (supports CalMAN calibration), twin free-to-air tuner, and a Technics tuned 3.1.2 Dolby Atmos speaker system with left/right upwards-firing speakers.
Price (all models have a GZ prefix)
- 2000U 65-inch September $8299
- 1500U 65-inch July $6199
- 1000U 55/65-inch July $3599/5799
GadgetGuy’s take – 2019 OLED
This Panasonic’s third generation of OLED. It buys the panels from LG (as does Sony) and wraps around its custom electronics, sound, design and support. It’s too early to tell if the GZ2000 Professional Grade OLED is the best, but trust Panasonic to give it a good shot.
4K Premium LED/LCD (GX880, GX850)
These use the same HCX Pro processor as the OLED and share the OLED features. These are edge-lit.
Price (all models have the GX prefix)
- 880A 75-inch July $4999
- 850A 55/65-inch July $1899/2499
4K LED LCD (GX800, GX740)
These get most of the Premium kit with a 100Hz MRR panel.
Price (all models have a GX prefix)
- 800A 55/65 Now $1749/2399
- 740A 55/65 Now $1549/2099
4K LED/LCD (GX600 – 43/49/55/65-inch)
The Panasonic Australia website classifies these as an entry level, edge-lit IPS, LED/LCD TV featuring
- HDR (will play HDR10/HLG) – depends on the source
- 4K upscale
- Stereo speakers
Price (all models have a GX prefix)
- 600A 43/49/55/65-inch Now $999/1199/14491999
Panasonic Soundbars – good, better, best (HTB510, HTB700 and HTB900)
The HTB900 is a Technics tuned, 3.1, 505W, Dolby Atmos soundbar. By that it decodes 2.0, 2.1, 3.1, 5.1, DTS:X, Dolby Atmos 5.1.2 or 7.1.4 to 3.1. It has 4K/HDR passthrough via HDMI ARC. It has a Panasonic Music Control app and supports Bluetooth SBC, Chromecast streaming and Google Assistant.
The HBT700 is 3.1, 376W and loses Chromecast, multi-room and Google Assistant.
The HBT510 is 2.1, 240W, and gains Chromecast, multi-room and Google Assitant.
Price (all have an HTB prefix)
- 900GNK July $1349
- 700GNK July $899
- 510GNK Now $549
Dolby Atmos is the go and Panasonic are using psychoacoustics to trick your mind into believing sounds are coming from overhead etc. The effectiveness depends a lot on room size and layout. It’s a shame that it did not bring in a high-end 7.1.4 system as Samsung and LG have – after all, if you drop $8K on the GZ2000, you want the best possible Dolby Atmos experience.
Blu-ray – UB150
It joins last year’s premium DP-UB9000 reference class Blu-ray ($1649) that does everything
And entry-level, ($279) HDR10+ that supports Dolby Atmos but down mixes Dolby Vision to HDR10+.
Micro System PMX92 and Mini System AKX320
The PMX92 micro ($549) has AUX-IN Autoplay feature, which makes listening to streamed music via devices such as Chromecast Audio completely effortless – the system will automatically switch on and select the correct input.
- Bluetooth, FM/DAB+ radio and CD playback
- Hi-Res audio
- Optical input for TV
- 120W, 2.0, three-way speaker using Panasonic’s LincsD-amp
The AKX320 mini ($359) has 450W, 2.0 and features a slew of DJ effects compatible with the MAX Juke app.
- USB and CD/DVD playback, FM radio
- Bluetooth 4.2 SBC
2019 HEADPHONE RANGE
Full details here
- HD610N ($499.95) over the ear, noise cancelling wireless, Hi-Res, headphones with Google Assistant and Bluetooth compatibility and comes in a choice of black or copper colours.
- HTX90N ($299.95) over the ear, active noise cancelling wireless headphones, retro styling studio, 24-hour battery and Google Assistant in matte black, vanilla white and indigo navy.
- HTX20B (119.95) wireless, in-ear buds, 8 hours battery, 8.5 hours playback