Panasonic 2022 OLED TVs boost brightness, add HFR and VRR

posted on Thursday, 12th May 2022 by Steve May

Panasonic  OLED  Games 

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Panasonic has announced new OLED TV models, and its LED TV hero model, for 2022. 

The new screens incorporate advanced gaming features, as well as the latest-generation panels optimised by Panasonic and tuned in Hollywood by award-winning colourist, Stefan Sonnenfeld.

The 2022 OLED line-up is its widest yet, covering screen sizes from 42- to 77-inches.  Leading the brand’s UK LED TV line-up is the LX800 (in 75-, 65-, 55-, 50-, 43-inches).

The brand says its 2022 OLED models have been custom engineered to deliver even higher peak brightness in True Cinema, Cinema, Filmmaker, and Professional modes. Colour volume for blues has also been improved, powered by Panasonic’s HCX Pro AI Processing technologies.

At a London briefing, Panasonic confirmed to Inside CI that all its 2022 OLED TVs will use OLED-EX panels, including the 42-inch models.

The line-up comprises the LZ2000 (77-, 65-, and 55-inches), the LZ1500 (65-, 55-, 48-, 42inches), the LZ1000 (65- and 55inches), the LZ980 (65-, 55-, 48-, 42-inches) and the LZ800 (65-, 55-, 48-, 42-inches) series. The latter is a UK-only range. The LZ2000 and the 55- and 65-inch LZ1500 utilise a heat-sync, earning them Master OLED Pro panel status. The smaller 48- and 42-inch LZ1500s, and the LZ1000 lack a heat sync but warrant Master OLED branding due to their superior brightness over the LZ980 and LZ800 models.

While Europe will see the release of the LX940 HDR Cinema Display Pro model, the UK’s range topper is the Android TV powered  LX800, labelled an HDR Cinema Display in its 75-, 65-, 55-inch guise, and a Bright Panel Plus screen in its 50- and 43-inch guise. The LX800 uses a standard HCX Processor.

All 2022 OLED models support Netflix Adaptive Calibrated Mode, which adjusts picture characteristics according to ambient light levels.

For an immersive video game experience, the OLED models sport HDMI2.1 features such as High Frame Rate (HFR) and Variable Refresh Rate (VRR) at 120Hz in full 4K resolution.

VRR support helps to solve judder and tearing if rendered resolution and LOD (level of detail) is too high, or when there are too many effects or objects rendered at the same time. With VRR ON, the TV and games console synchronise the frame pacing to provide a smoother experience.

New this year is Game Control Board which collects all relevant game settings, including frame rate, input lag and VRR and HDR metadata, in one place and presents them as a game overlay; it can be programmed to be accessed by just one click on the remote control by assigning it to the customisable ‘my App.’

A Dark Visibility Enhancer allows the gamer to adjust the near black portion of dark scenes, making it easier to see the route forward or detect enemies hiding in the shadows, while HDR Tonemap shows the current HDR tone-mapping settings.

As promised, 2022 also sees improvements in terms of speed. A new 60Hz Refresh Mode dramatically reduces latency and input lag for 60Hz games on OLED TVs.

The new OLED models feature advanced sensors to detect the ambient colour temperature and adjust the picture to deliver the best viewing experience, aided and abetted by the set’s HCX Pro AI processor.

This function builds on Panasonic’s Auto AI mode, introduced last year, which uses Artificial Intelligence to identify in real time the type of content being played.

Viewers can also expect improvements in audio. The LZ2000 introduces directional sound in addition to Panasonic’s 360° Soundscape audio package.

The multiple built-in upward-firing, side-firing, and front-firing speaker units produce a spatial soundstage with Dolby Atmos content. As well as improved surround sound, the LZ2000 features the new advanced Front Array Speaker System, which directs the sound, enabling accurate and clear audio as well as Beam Forming.

The smaller LZ1500 screens feature Cinema Surround Pro, which also supports Dolby Atmos.

Steve May

Inside CI Editor Steve May is a freelance technology specialist who also writes for T3TechRadarHome Cinema Choice, Trusted Reviews and The Luxe Review.

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