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Panasonic CT-27SX12 review: Panasonic CT-27SX12

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The Good Tau PureFlat picture tube; color temperatures; three-line comb filter; component and S-Video inputs; lighted universal remote.

The Bad Scan-velocity modulation not controllable; dark-gray color and styling seem out-of-date.

The Bottom Line This is a good all-around performer with a decent balance of performance and control features.

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7.2 Overall

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Without much flash, Panasonic's least expensive, 27-inch flat-screen TV gets many details right, including perks such as a lighted universal remote and a front-panel S-Video input. The audio package boasts 7 watts x 2 with BBE Enhanced audio, and AI Volume to control loud commercials.

We ran the set through its paces, using the Warm color-temperature setting to get the most out of the factory presets. The set showed some tilt toward the blue end of the scale, but color was uniform across the range of light output, which was on the money for a direct-view set. The color decoder made yellows appear slightly orange but otherwise looked accurate. On movie material, the Panasonic CT-27SX12 performed very well. The picture was sharp and detailed, showing natural flesh tones and good blacks in dark scenes.

One major complaint was that we couldn't adjust the scan velocity modulation, so the set had a tendency to obscure fine details and introduce rings around lines. It also lacks vertical compression, a feature that allows TVs to display the full resolution of enhanced-for-wide-screen DVDs. We found the CT-27SX12 online for as little as $399, and it's a solid set for the money if you don't mind these performance issues.

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