CES 2013: Panasonic 2013 ZT60 vs 2012 VT50

We loved the VT50, and even gave it our Video Product of the Year award. Panasonic, though, didn’t just update their plasma flagship model, they made a whole new flagship model.

Sure, a bunch of improvements were mentioned, but how much better is the ZT60?

Well, they had a darkened room at their booth with the two side-by-side. Some skepticism and cautious enthusiasm after the jump.

Ok, first things first. I wasn’t allowed to check the settings on either TV. A few ticks of the brightness control could result in radically different black levels. I reviewed the VT50, and I remember the black levels being slightly lower than the one in this comparison. So on one hand, take this demo for what it is: A company trying to demonstrate why their new model is better than their old model.

That said, I don’t think the black levels were ever as low as what the ZT60 were showing. You practically couldn’t tell the pixels were on. Forget “KURO-like,” it’s practically “OLED-like.”

I can’t wait to test a production model.

Here’s another image to whet your appetite.

I didn’t do any contrast or brightness tweaking in Photoshop that would skew the perceptions. If the differences don’t look too significant in the photos, in person, with your eyes adjusted to the dark, they seem huge.

The ZT60 is on the left in all these photos.