Published On: April 25, 2011

Panasonic TC-L37E3 LED/LCD HDTV Reviewed

Published On: April 25, 2011

Panasonic TC-L37E3 LED/LCD HDTV Reviewed

HTR Reviewer Adrienne Maxwell takes a look at the TC-L37E3 and examines the features, which are extensive, to decide whether or not this Panasonic LED HDTV is worth the price of admission.

Panasonic_tc-l37e3_LED_HDTV_Review.gif The first of Panasonic's 2011 HDTVs have arrived, many of which are lower-priced entry-level models. This year's line of LED-based LCDs will have five series, including the entry-level E3 Series. This series offers screen sizes of 42, 37, and 32 inches (Panasonic does not sell LCDs with screen sizes larger than 42 inches). We have not performed a hands-on review of the TC-L37E3, but here is an overview of its features. This 37-inch, 1080p LCD is a 2D-only display that uses edge LED lighting, which allows for a slim profile of 1.7 inches.

Additional Resources
• Read more LED HDTV reviews by HomeTheaterReview.com's staff.
• Explore Blu-ray player option is our Blu-ray Player Review section.
• Look for some low-profile on-wall speakers to complement the TC-L37E3 LED HDTV.

The TC-L37E3 has a 60Hz refresh rate; it does not have the Motion Picture Pro 4 120Hz technology found in the 42-inch E3 model. The IPS (In-Plane Switching) Alpha panel changes the orientation of the liquid crystals to allow for a wider viewing angle; Panasonic claims that this year's IPS Alpha panel has been improved to allow better contrast at wider angles while using less power. The TC-L37E3 is wireless-ready, with the addition of an optional USB adapter. This TV does not have the full VIERA Connect Web platform that will appear on many step-up 2011 models; instead, it has Panasonic's basic Web platform, dubbed Easy IPTV, that includes the six most popular services: Netflix, Amazon VOD, Napster, Pandora, CinemaNow, and Facebook. It can also receive streamed content from DLNA media servers.

The TC-L37E3's connection panel includes four HDMI inputs, with one on the side panel for easy access. You also get one component video input, one PC (D-sub 15-pin) input, and one RF input to access the internal ATSC and Clear-QAM tuners. Two USB ports and an SD card reader are available for media playback. The USB ports also support the addition of a keyboard and/or WiFi adapter; you can also use the back-panel Ethernet port for a wired network connection. The TC-L37E3 lacks a control port like RS-232 for integration into an advanced control system.

As an entry-level TV, the TC-L37E3 includes basic picture adjustments but lacks advanced options like precise white balance, gamma, and full color management. Picture settings include five picture modes (with a Game mode that improves response time for gaming content), three color-temperature presets, noise reduction, and a C.A.T.S. feature that automatically adjusts the backlight brightness based on ambient light (there's also a manual backlight control). As I mentioned above, this model does not include a 120Hz mode to reduce motion blur and film judder, nor does it offer the 24p Direct In mode found in higher-end Panasonic models, which lets you dictate whether to output 24p film content at 60 Hz (which involves 3:2 pulldown) or 48 Hz (which involves 2:2 pulldown and produces less judder). The TV has five aspect-ratio options, and you can configure it to display a 1080i/1080p image with no overscan.

The audio setup menu includes bass, treble, and balance controls, as well as a basic surround mode, an A.I Sound function that equalizes volume level across all channels and inputs, and a volume leveler that deals specifically with the external inputs.

The ECO menu includes a power-saving function that automatically reduces the backlight brightness, as well as options to turn off the TV when no signal is present or no activity occurs for a designated time period.

Read about the high points and the low points of the TC-L37E3 on Page 2.

Panasonic_tc-l37e3_LED_HDTV_Review.gif

High Points
• The TC-L37E3 has a 1080p resolution and four HDMI inputs, plus a PC input.
• The TV uses in-plane switching to improve viewing angle.
• The TV offers a wired or optional wireless network connection.
• Easy IPTV includes the hottest Web services, like Netflix, Amazon VOD, Pandora, and Facebook. The TV also supports DLNA streaming.
• You can attach a USB keyboard for easier text input with Easy IPTV.
• The edge LED lighting system allows for a slim cabinet and helps improve energy efficiency.

Low Points
• The TC-L37E3 lacks a 120Hz refresh rate and does not offer the advanced picture controls found on higher-end models.
• The edge LED system does not include local dimming for improved black-level performance.
• This TV doesn't offer the more advanced VIERA Connect Web platform, with access to an apps store and additional Web services.
• It does not have integrated WiFi; the USB adapter is sold separately.
• It is not 3D-ready.

Competition and Comparison
Compare the Panasonic TC-L37E3 with its competition by reading the reviews for the Vizio M550NV and Toshiba 46UX600U. Learn more about LED-based HDTVs by visiting our LED HDTV section.

Conclusion
The TC-L37E3 has an MSRP of $799.95, which is more than competitive with current 37-inch LED-based models on the market. This TV has plenty of desirable features, such as WiFi readiness, four HDMI inputs, DLNA streaming, and the Easy IPTV Web options. The big omission is 120Hz. Blur reduction may not be as important on the smaller 37-inch screen; however, if you like the smoothing effects of de-judder technology on film sources, you'll want to look elsewhere. Videophiles may prefer a higher-end model with more options to fine-tune the picture quality, but the TC-L37E3 has a lot to offer the casual viewer looking for a thin, bright LCD TV.

Additional Resources
• Read more LED HDTV reviews by HomeTheaterReview.com's staff.
• Explore Blu-ray player option is our Blu-ray Player Review section.
• Look for some low-profile on-wall speakers to complement the TC-L37E3 LED HDTV.

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