Three years ago, Sanyo had the unenviable pleasure of releasing one of the poorest televisions we have ever seen. Thewas a product that was years behind its time and almost as expensive as the superior Sony product to boot. So you can imagine our trepidation when we unpacked the company's latest model. Thankfully, we were about to be very pleasantly surprised.
While the premium televisions come with see-though this and brushed aluminium that, the Sanyo LCD40XR10F is a little more modest. It comes in a single colour: black. As a result, it could look a little anonymous on a shop floor, but it won't sully up your lounge room like aor even .
As a budget LCD, the Sanyo is a lot thicker than the slimline flagships, and the finish on the rear of the TV is pretty cheap-looking, but the unit appears to be well-built.
The Sanyo is a bare-bones unit and doesn't come with much in the way of fancy trimmings, except for one small exception that we'll shortly detail.
The LCD40XR10F is a 40-inch LCD TV with a full high-definition resolution that includes a standard fluorescent (and not LED) backlight. Processing features are fairly light-on, with no 100Hz modes, but it does have a noise-reduction circuit.
One feature that we've seen pop up on several TVs recently —and come to mind — is USB time-shifting (though not recording). The Sanyo allows you to connect a USB disk and use it to time-shift or "pause" current programs. Unfortunately, the TV misses out on an , so it offers no recording. The USB port also supports music and movie playback, as well.
If power consumption is an issue, then there are certainly better-performing TVs out there; the Sanyo scores a meagre 2.5 out of six for its Energy Star rating. This makes it relatively inefficient, and you can even feel the heat coming off the panel when standing next to it.
For a cheap telly, the Sanyo offers a lot of different inputs including three HDMI, two component video, twin composites, 3.5-mm mini-jack and VGA. Unusually, it offers a coaxial digital output, not the usual optical, in addition to an A/V out.
One of the tasks that we perform before testing a TV is to calibrate it using the Monster/ISF HDTV Calibration Wizard DVD. When setting up the Sanyo, we found that it wasn't able to reproduce "blacker than black", which is an integral part of setting the black levels correctly. Instead of appearing black, they came out a fluorescent blue, and while this is not actually a problem — you aren't supposed to see these shades, anyway — it's perhaps an indication of compromises made to keep the price low.