Panasonic SC-PMX5 review

User-friendly, but hamstrung by its lacklustre sound Tested at £300

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Our Verdict

User-friendly and good-looking, but hobbled by sharp treble and lacklustre sound

For

  • Integrated iPod dock
  • easy-to-use remote
  • good build and looks
  • decently detailed vocals

Against

  • Sharp treble
  • unwieldy at higher volume levels
  • timing could be better

Denon's D-M38DAB has dominated the micro system market over the past few years, picking up quite a few Awards along the way.

Denon has been dominating the micro system market over the past few years, picking up quite a few Awards along the way. Panasonic’s new system, the SC-PMX5, is an attempt to edge into the top spot.

First impressions of the SC-PMX5 are favourable. Panasonic has redesigned the main unit, arranging the buttons, disc tray and large display screen into a more compact structure. It’s not too flashy, but the simple aluminium finish looks good.

The speakers are unchanged. The cabinets are petite and light, with a reflex port at the back. They house a 14cm mid/bass driver, a 20mm soft-dome tweeter,

and a 15mm super-tweeter.

Easy-to-use dock system

The integrated iPod dock that sits atop the main unit is new, though. It’s a welcome addition alongside the CD and radio options, and you can also connect other smartphones and MP3 players via the USB port.

The iPod option is nice and easy to use: you can flick between playlists and menus on the iPod with just one button on the standard remote. You might have to remember the order of songs, though, as

it’s tricky to read the screen from a distance when you’re scrolling through a playlist.

The SC-PMX5 is capable of filling a small room, but things get unwieldy at higher volumes. The SC-PMX5 sounds strained as it works hard to marshall different parts. Regardless of volume, though, its main issue is an overly bright and sharp sound.

More importantly, it feels as if there’s a weight hanging off even the most upbeat songs. The ability to start and stop with precision is essential for a big swing number like Mr Pinstripe Suit by Big Bad Voodoo Daddy, but the SC-PMX5 just isn’t as agile next to similarly priced rivals. There’s a lack of energy here, which it doesn’t make it the most engaging listen.

Despite the issues with the treble, though, vocals sound clear and detailed. Kept at a neighbour-friendly volume,

it’s pleasant enough to listen to.

The SC-PMX5 started off on the right foot, but its bright treble lets it down. It has its perks with the iPod dock, but if you’re looking for outright fun, you won’t have

to look far for rivals that do it better.

Panasonic’s new system, the SC-PMX5, is an attempt to edge into the top spot.

First impressions of the Panasonic SC-PMX5 are favourable. Panasonic has redesigned the main unit, arranging the buttons, disc tray and large display screen into a more compact structure.

It’s not too flashy, but the simple aluminium finish looks good. The speakers are unchanged.

The cabinets are petite and light, with a reflex port at the back. They house a 14cm mid/bass driver, a 20mm soft-dome tweeter, and a 15mm super-tweeter.

Panasonic SC-PMX5: new iPod dock
The integrated iPod dock that sits atop the main unit is new, though. It’s a welcome addition alongside the CD and radio options, and you can also connect other smartphones and MP3 players via the USB port.

The iPod option is nice and easy to use: you can flick between playlists and menus on the iPod with just one button on the standard remote.

You might have to remember the order of songs, though, as it’s tricky to read the screen from a distance when you’re scrolling through a playlist.

Panasonic SC-PMX5: Sound qualitry
The Panasonic SC-PMX5 is capable of filling a small room, but things get unwieldy at higher volumes.

The SC-PMX5 sounds strained as it works hard to marshall different parts. Regardless of volume, though, its main issue is an overly bright and sharp sound.

More importantly, it feels as if there’s a weight hanging off even the most upbeat songs.

The ability to start and stop with precision is essential for a big swing number like Mr Pinstripe Suit by Big Bad Voodoo Daddy, but the Panasonic SC-PMX5 just isn’t as agile next to similarly priced rivals.

There’s a lack of energy here, which it doesn’t make it the most engaging listen.

Despite the issues with the treble, though, vocals sound clear and detailed. Kept at a neighbour-friendly volume, it’s pleasant enough to listen to.

Panasonic SC-PMX5: Verdict
The SC-PMX5 started off on the right foot, but its bright treble lets it down.

It has its perks with the iPod dock, but if you’re looking for outright fun, you won’t have to look far for rivals that do it better.

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Specifications

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General Information

Manufacturer Website Addresshttp://www.panasonic.co.uk
Brand NamePanasonic
Product SeriesSC
Product TypeMicro Hi-Fi System
ManufacturerPanasonic
Manufacturer Part NumberSC-PMX5EG-S
Product NamePanasonic SC-PMX5
Product ModelSC-PMX5

Miscellaneous

Package Contents
  • Super Micro Component System
  • Remote Control
Environmentally FriendlyYes
Environmental CertificationREACH

Controls-Indicators

Remote ControlYes

Audio

Audio FormatsCD-DA, MP3
RMS Output Power120 W
Speaker Configuration2

Technical Information

Player-Recorder TypeCD Player
FeaturesRDS/EON, Sleep Timer, Clock
Number of Channels45
Media FormatsCD-RW
Number of Discs1
Frequency BandFM, AM

Physical Characteristics

Width21 cm
Depth26.6 cm
Weight Approximate3 kg
Height12 cm
ColourSilver
Dimensions12 cm (H): 21 cm (W): 26.6 cm (D)

Power Description

Operating Power Consumption40 W

Interfaces-Ports

iPod SupportedYes
USBYes

Display and Graphics

DisplayFLD

Warranty

Limited Warranty1 Year