Panasonic TX-L24X6B review: Panasonic TX-L24X6B

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The Good Warm, convincing colours; Good overall picture quality; Thin, stylish design; Customisable smart TV homescreen.

The Bad Some motion blur; Could do with more catch-up TV apps; Expensive.

The Bottom Line The Panasonic TX-L24X6B is thin and stylish and offers strong picture performance. Given its relatively high price tag, however, it's a shame it doesn't support more online catch-up TV services.

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7.5 Overall

The 24-inch TX-24X6B is the smallest TV in Panasonic's range to have the company's smart TV system onboard -- so it lets you access services such as BBC iPlayer and Netflix. It has an HD Ready resolution rather than Full HD, however, and priced at around £350, it's pretty expensive for such a small telly.

User interface and EPG

Its wee screen size doesn't mean the TX-L24X6B misses out on the smart TV system boasted by the larger screened models in Panasonic's Viera lineup. When you switch it on you're greeted by the new homescreen, which includes a video window for live TV along with various shortcuts to smart TV apps and widgets.

There are three different homescreens to choose from, but Panasonic cleverly also lets you create your own customised screen using a choice of four templates. This is ideal if you want to group together services that you use all the time, such as iPlayer, Netflix and Facebook on a single, easy to access screen.

Panasonic TX-L24X6B EPG
There's a video thumbnail window integrated into the EPG.

The settings menus are also identical to those found on the brand's high-end TVs, and unusually for a little TV there are comprehensive picture controls provided, including a full colour management system. The menus system feels pretty speedy to use, too.

Unlike older Panasonic models, the EPG on this one has a video window so you can keep tabs on the show you're watching while perusing the guide to see what you might want to catch later. The guide still looks basic, but it's quick to navigate around and the text is easy to read from a distance even on a screen size this small.

Smart TV features

Panasonic's Smart TV platform centres on the idea of a Homescreen that pops up every time you turn on your TV -- although you can change it so you just see full-screen TV instead. You can choose between using preset homescreens or design your own from a template so it contains just the apps you use most often.

There's a fairly broad range of apps available from the onboard Viera Connect market place. Most of these are free, but some -- mostly games -- need to be paid for. In here you'll find the likes of BBC iPlayer and BBC News, as well as Netflix, iConcerts, Facebook and Twitter.

The line-up isn't as strong as that on Samsung's smart TVs, however, as it lacks 4oD, ITV Player, Demand5 and Lovefilm, which are all supported on Samsung's platform.

Panasonic TX-L24X6B smart TV
The smart TV homescreen is easy to use.

The TV also has a built-in media player and this has good format support. It streamed a range of MKV HD, DivX and Xvid files across a network without any issues and also plays these formats from drives connected up to either of its two USB ports or from memory cards slotted into its SD card reader.

Unfortunately it doesn't support recording of shows from the Freeview HD tuner to USB drives. However, if you download the Viera Remote 2 app for Android or iOS devices, you can use your tablet or phone as a remote control for the TV -- it even lets you 'throw' photos, videos, music files and webpages from your mobile device to the TV screen. This works reasonably well, although there can be quiet a long pause as files stream from the phone to the telly.

Design and connections

Most small-screen TVs look quite chunky these days compared to their larger-screened siblings, with disproportionately thick bezels. Panasonic has managed to avoid that failing on the X6B, as its bezel is relatively narrow -- it measures just 21mm wide at the top and side edges. The bottom edge does extend down a little further, but the designers have managed to disguise this fact somewhat by angling it away from you to give it a slimmer visual profile.

The panel across the bottom actually looks pretty stylish, but is perhaps not as classy as the brushed-metal effect used on Panasonic's older TX-L24E6B. Nevertheless, the thin chrome strip that runs all the way across the bottom does look attractive and helps distract from the slightly plasticky nature of the rest of the chassis. The pedestal stand looks reasonably elegant, but again is made entirely from plastic so doesn't feel quite as solid as I would have liked.