Panasonic adds Hollywood pro features to 2020 OLED range

posted on Wednesday, 19th February 2020 by Steve May

OLED  4K  home cinema  Dolby Atmos  Dolby Vision 

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Panasonic has unveiled three new OLED screens for 2020, plus a trio of LED TV models, with Dolby Vision IQ and Filmmaker Mode with Intelligent Sensing.

The new HZ2000, HZ1500, and HZ1000 OLEDs, and the HX940, HX900 and HX800 LED models, were announced yesterday at a European press launch at Pinewood Studios. 

Dolby Vision IQ and Filmmaker Mode with Intelligent Sensing are both designed to improve the cinematic viewing experience at home, regardless of whether content is viewed in a dark or brightly lit room.

Developed by the UHD Alliance, Filmmaker Mode uses a single button preset to set frame rate, aspect ratio, colour and contrast, and turn off noise reduction and sharpening.

Pinewood Exterior

Filmmaker Mode Button

Intelligent Sensing couples this to the ambient light sensor in the TV. This counters the over darkening of HDR images when viewed in a brighter room, by creating the best perceptual match for the two environments.

It can be considered a natural complement to Dolby Vision IQ, which again uses the ambient light sensor to intelligently compensate for viewing conditions.

The HZ2000 boasts a Master HDR OLED Professional Edition panel, as customised by Panasonic R&D engineers, for higher overall picture brightness.

Both the HZ2000 and HZ1500 series also feature built-in upward-firing speakers for Immersive Dolby Atmos audio. All OLEDs come in both 65-inch and 55-inch screen sizes.

Once again, all OLED models share picture tuning by leading Hollywood colourist Stefan Sonnenfeld. Sonnenfeld includes A Star is Born, Wonder Woman and Jurassic World on his resume.

The entire line-up supports Dolby Vision and HDR10+, and use Panasonic’s HCX PRO Intelligent processor.

The brand says it has improved motion performance on the sets with an advanced implementation of black frame insertion. The HCX Pro Intelligent processor is able to analyse the incoming signal and dynamically adjust the duration of the black frame over a two-frame cycle to determine a ‘sweet spot’ for maximum smoothness and minimal flicker.

 "All 2020 Panasonic OLED TVs will allow for tone-mapping to be turned off through the menu system..." 

The HZ2000 features ‘360° Soundscape Pro’ with tuning by Technics. Power output is rated at 140W. The HZ1500 is labelled ‘360° Soundscape’, dropping the ‘Pro’ suffix, and has an audio output of 80W.

Perhaps most interestly, Panasonic has included two new pro features based on requests from the post-production community in Hollywood.

Firstly, all 2020 OLED TVs will allow for tone-mapping to be turned off through the menu system. As there is no TV industry standard for tone-mapping, the ability to turn it off allows post-production houses to work on the source content completely accurately until it ‘hard clips’ at the native brightness of the panel. Panasonic will also allow a ‘clip point’ to be specified through the menu system.

It’s also introducing what it says is the world’s lowest calibration points, at 1.3 percent and 0.5 percent, to optimize linear transition from true black to just above black.

All the screens will support CalMAN PatternGen test patterns from CalMAN software along with AutoCal functionality. Imaging Science Foundation (isf) calibration settings are also supported.

Presentation (1)

LED Range

The brand’s LED TV line-up (pictured above) is similarly ambitious.

The HX800 series come in 40-, 50-, 58- and 65-inch screen sizes,use an HCX Processor, and support Dolby Atmos. The HX900 series (43-, 49-, 55- and 65-inch) adds an HDR Cinema Display mode for enhanced brightness. It's not yet confirmed exactly which HX900 models wil come to the UK. Panasonic tells Inside CI that it will finalise plans in due course.

Shipping in 43-, 49-, 55-, 65- and 75-inch sizes, the HX940 flagship model has a faster 100Hz screen refresh rate, HDR Cinema Display Pro, and an HCX PRO Intelligent processor. It also has Local Dimming Intelligent Pro, which dynamically adjusts both the backlight and also the LCD shutters themselves in concert to achieve deeper blacks without loss of picture clarity.

Design tweaks include a swivel pedestal on the HZ1500 and HZ1000 series OLED TVs and 2-way switch pedestals on the HX940 and HX900 series 4K LCD TVs.

The screens are expected to ship between April and June.

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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