Panasonic LZ2000 Review: High-end quality with superb color accuracy
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Panasonic announces its new 4K OLED TVs with Master OLED Pro LZ2000 series panels. In 2022, the flagship series will also be available in 77 inches. This year, the manufacturer focuses not only on sophisticated connoisseurs of cinema, but even more concentrates on the interests of gamers.
Particularly noteworthy in gaming is the new low-latency mode that appears automatically to reduce input lag. Also reassuringly, variable refresh rate support and ALLM features are available from launch on two 40Gbps HDMI 2.1 ports. In the Panasonic TX-77LZ2000 4K HDR TV review, we will take a closer look at the new features.
Panasonic LZ2000 Preview
In terms of design, the Panasonic 77LZ2000 TV is clearly similar to its JZ2000 series predecessor . Seen from the front, it’s a sleek and discreet OLED screen with a subdued design and dark bezels that don’t stand out. The build quality is solid and perfect, as everyone is used to seeing from Panasonic.
Looking at the Panasonic LZ2000 from the side, it’s easy to see that it’s thicker than most other OLED screens. This is thanks to Technics’ comprehensive audio solution, consisting of a bottom-mounted soundbar and additional speakers on the rear. This solution also means that the TV will protrude more from the wall if you choose to mount it on a bracket.
Panasonic continues to use a swivel stand in the 2022 LZ2000 model so that you can easily rotate the screen in the desired direction. At diagonals of 55 and 65 inches, it is round in shape. The 77LZ2000 TV has a rectangular base.
The Panasonic 77LZ2000’s image processing has been redesigned to ensure that the picture always has an accurate, breathtaking look, regardless of the viewing conditions in which the TV may be used. In particular, the LZ 2000 TV’s HCX Pro AI processor works in tandem with new sensors that detect the color of the ambient light in the room, as well as its brightness, to compensate for the influence of the external environment on our perception of color.
Meanwhile, the Auto AI mode introduced in the JZ2000 last year, which detects the type of content being viewed and refines image characteristics accordingly, has also been upgraded to provide even more accurate results from both source detection and image presentation elements. Especially when working with external source devices.
In addition, the LZ2000 continues Panasonic’s consumer-centric approach to supporting both Dolby Vision and HDR10+ dynamic HDR formats, rather than just supporting one or the other, as many key competitors do. Otherwise, Panasonic still maintains a neutral picture-forming philosophy, offering appropriate picture modes such as Filmmaker Mode and Professional.
So the first impression is that the LZ2000, like its predecessors, has an enchantingly natural image reproduction that is immediately likable and inspires confidence. Panasonic does not try to embellish the picture with rich colors or artificial sharpness. Otherwise, this could result in the actors looking plastic. In the LZ2000 model, they get exactly as much makeup as they had on set, no more, no less!
The Panasonic LZ2000 also has well-functioning upscaling and noise cancellation. OLED screens are known for their excellent black levels, but some tend to exaggerate the darkness in some areas. Panasonic excels here, with accurate gradations at the darkest end of the gray scale. The LZ2000 panel of the 77th diagonal was named Master OLED PRO Cinema Size.
It’s a conventional sensor, but it delivers an increase in mid-range brightness over the 2021 JZ2000 predecessor. In that sense, the LZ2000 can compete in brightness with the new generation of higher-brightness panels that are finally starting to hit the OLED market from companies like LG, Philips and Sony.
Powered by HCX Pro AI processor, the Panasonic LZ2000 TV runs the latest Panasonic My Home Screen 7.0 smart OS. The customizable home buttons are still front and center, but more levels of refinement have been added, such as My View, which lets you customize your own photo gallery. Improved voice control, audio descriptions, audio dialogues, and subtitle features for the hearing impaired.
Previously, the old remote control caused complaints. Starting with JZ2000, TVs are equipped with a new version. It’s still a bulky case with lots of buttons, but with a more ergonomic design. There are direct buttons for important functions, as well as quick buttons for popular streaming services. The remote control now uses Bluetooth, but has changed from metal to plastic and no longer has a backlight. This is a little disappointing for moviegoers.
While Panasonic’s operating system works great, it still lacks richness. Compared to big players like Samsung, LG and, last but not least, many Android TVs, MyHomeScreen has to make do with relatively few apps and streaming services.
The low latency mode, which is automatically enabled when a set-top box is connected, reduces the output latency in games at 4K / 60Hz settings to a mind-blowing 1.5ms, compared to the already impressive 10.5ms provided by the standard game preset. The LZ2000 also introduces a number of other more unique and deeper gaming features.
For example, you can bring up a new game control panel (like LG’s) that will give you access to detailed information about the received game video signal (including frame rate, HDR metadata and color subsampling data) or access to other tools. For example, the Dark Visibility Enhancer lets you adjust near-black tones to make it easier to see hidden enemies or routes in dark areas.
Panasonic’s flagship OLED TVs take sound quality as seriously as picture quality, and that trend continues with the LZ2000. The TV continues to use Soundscape Pro’s unique integrated 360° audio system, which includes built-in side and up speakers, as well as a powerful array of front speakers. This is all done, of course, with the goal of getting the most out of Dolby Atmos soundtracks.
New for the LZ2000, the small front speakers reproduce accurate sound with Beam Forming, which controls the sound in each zone. Viewers can enjoy more accurate quality while minimizing potential distractions. Speaker channels are configured using the remote’s built-in microphone, which adapts the sound to the acoustics of the room.
The volume and directivity of the speaker system can be adjusted in three modes: Pinpoint, Area and Spot. Pinpoint sends sound to a specific point. Area allows you to shift the sound according to the placement of a group of people, while Spot increases the volume in one specific area, but still makes the sound audible to everyone else in the room.
The LZ2000 also comes with an Auto AI setting that can use some of the processor’s processing power to bring old audio tracks to life. The sound from Panasonic doesn’t quite match the crystal-clear sound palette of the Philips OLED936 with speakers from B&W, but is undeniably among the best built-in TV sound systems. It can also be enhanced with an external subwoofer via an auxiliary audio output with adjustable volume.
The LZ2000 has four HDMI 2.1 compliant HDMI inputs, two of which support key gaming features such as 4K/120Hz and Variable Refresh Rate (VRR). One of the inputs supports eARC Audio Return Channel . In addition, there are three USB ports, a digital optical audio output and an Ethernet port.
Wireless connectivity is represented by Wi-Fi and Bluetooth. The latter now supports dual connection, so you can team up with someone to listen together late at night. Antenna jacks allow you to connect satellite and terrestrial antennas.
Panasonic has put extra effort into this year’s top model, and the LZ2000 is an improvement in several important ways (though not all). Picture quality is definitely high-end with superb color accuracy, bottomless black levels and juicy brightness that adapts to the environment.
The Panasonic LZ2000 also has an excellent sound system on board, eliminating the need for a separate soundbar. Ease of use has been improved with a new menu system, new remote control and improved connectivity. To top it all, the series is supplemented with an enlarged 77-inch diagonal, which will obviously not go unnoticed by fans of home cinema.
What do you think?
4K OLED/Master OLED PRO Cinema Size / Brightness Enhancement Technology