When you buy into a budget brand you usually get what you pay for, and we admit to having passed over Soniq in the aisles of our local JB Hi-Fi before dismissing them as "just another cheapie". However, after a positive experience with a Soniq iPod dock we were keen to try its latest 40-inch television, a product which is going for less than AU$800.
That's right, half the price of a "name" brand. Insane. With three exclamation points. The sound of glass breaking.
Design and features
Squint at the picture of the Soniq QSL400XT and you would swear this is a Samsung product with its glossy black bezel and maroon accents. The TV is quite solid and a bit bulgy at the back, but at this price you can't expect the super-slim stylings of the LED crowd. The attention to detail is higher than on the iPod dock with nice touches including a black metal speaker grille and a chrome power button that no-one will see as it's mounted on the back. The swivel stand is also piano black.
The remote control is large and friendly — the way we generally like them — and most functions are placed intuitively and within easy reach.
As a budget model there are none of the fancy 100Hz modes or "green" motion sensors. This is simply a television: you turn it on and you watch stuff.
The panel itself features a 1920x1080 resolution, or full-HD for the number phobes, and a rather honest 3000:1 contrast ratio — not the 10 kagillion:1 figure we're used to seeing.
Connectivity is in keeping with models of its size by providing three HDMI ports, two component inputs, an S-Video connection, a VGA port, and unusually for a budget TV just a single composite connector. One small issue is that the HDMI ports aren't labelled and it may be initially confusing working out which port is 'number one'.