I Purchased this TV as it was cheap as my previous £1000 LCD TV had died after 5 years of use! as this was less than 1/4 of the cost of the old one my expectations of it were low.
The build quality is not outstanding, the stand feels flimsy and TV doesn't feel robust but it fitted together nicely with the aide of the screwdriver supplied - style wise if you like piano black it fine? wall mounting could be tricky as most of the connectors are on the back (allow approx 1 and 1/2" rear clearance)
The set-up was simple (As most people I didn't read the book! ), there is a first time install procedure that worked well. There is a USB port for playback of videos music and photos, Mpeg4, MP3, Jpegs etc played fine without issue! my only criticism is that MP4 playback you have no control over aspect ratio - if its the wrong format then tough! also it cant record to the USB device port!. sound quality is OK, it isn't tinny but its by no means punchy, the stereo spatial effect is not one of its strong points either! but for mr average its fine.
It has the basic inputs and outputs on the rear, a few HDMI\'s, 2 scarts, a component input etc. Composite AV input is at the side of the TV. SPDIF is in the form of a coax RCA Phono socket only (not optical). it does have a headphone socket but no other dedicated analogue outputs - Plugging in headphones mutes the TV speakers and brings up subtitles by default for some reason, It also has a common interface card slot for pay per view channels (optional extra).
Contrast ratio is ok but let down by the poor viewing angle, there is a dynamic backlight control that is used to cheat the 25000:1 contrast ratio figure, this works by reducing the brightness of the fluorescent tubes on dark video scenes so as to improve the black levels, it also doubles as an eco mode - when the scene is darker the power consumption fell to just 48Watts, disabling this feature it rises to 112 watts (over the 100W figure it says on the back!) which isn't really that high considering early plasma TVs could use upto 1500 watts!
The dynamic backlight control is ok in the evening with artificial lights but for bright daytime use it is too dark, its operation also adds a strange effect of the contrast constantly changing with scene but my wife or son hasn't noticed this so for some its an environmentally green plus point! The teletext is good (although obsolete is some areas) - the 1000 page memory means you don't have to wait for teletext pages to load, Text and TV screens can be split 50:50 too!
The actual resolution and image quality is also quite good - the Mpeg decoding artefacts are less apparent on this than some of the Samsung models I have seen although you do need to wind down the sharpness control a bit if your viewing distance is less than 4 metres.
The RCU feels of reasonable quality and button layout is ok, the menus are easy to navigate and picture adjustments will cover most viewing tastes (some TVs you find they have to be adjusted to there limits to get a good picture).
In standby the TV draws less than 1 Watt - the user manual gives no indication of power consumption or any other specs! power output of the speakers isn't listed - An STA333 amplifier device used is a Class D driver ic but that's all we know! At high volume levels you can hear the resonance of the casing but for normal volume its adequate. headphones come from an old fashioned (reasonable quality) linear headphone amplifier!
The biggest plus point was the price.. £230 GBP (inc 20% VAT!).
In general this is an OK TV, so far after 2 months of use I have not seen any odd software bugs or unexpected behaviour. my only critical observation would be the contrast ratio and average viewing angle, my previous TV had a CR of just 800:1 and was far better than this one at 25000:1! the viewing angle is highly dependant on the up/down angle you are viewing it at, The user guide is rubbish, (The UK pages of the user manual are in Greek! - EN is English though). it has no specs or troubleshooting if something is not working as expected!
If you are on a budget looking for an LCD TV under £300 I would recommend this over most of the other low end TV's but don't expect Hitachi or Sharp LCD display performance!
THOMSON 32 LCD TV 32HE8234B
Views 3 Likes Comments Comment
27 April 2011
Have something to share, create your own guide... Write a guide
Explore more guides