In performance terms, Toshiba has always stood towards the back of the bunch as its technologies have tended to be a little behind the curve. The company is looking to change this with the release of its XL700A series, which includes its first LED system and internet connectivity.
In words that were used to describe Steve Buschemi, the Toshiba XL700A is "kinda funny looking". The bezel is piano black — fairly standard these days — but it also has black, brushed-metal panels stuck on top which don’t quite meet at the corners. The effect comes off looking a little like a patchwork quilt made for Batman.
The remote features a similar finish, though instead of metal it's brushed plastic and not quite as luxurious as the Pioneer Kuro remotes of yore that featured actual metal. It's fairly easy to use though.
While its Japanese compatriots are full steam ahead with the interactive features on their televisions, Toshiba has been a little more conservative with its networking capabilities till now. Sure, it's got thewith ... erm ... the Power of Greyskull, but that may never actually be sold in Australia. Meanwhile, the XL700A dips its toes into networking waters with the inclusion of a media player and YouTube.
This 47-inch TV boasts an LED backlight for better contrast, and the 1080p screen has a host of picture processing technologies including MetaBrain Premium, ClearFrame 100Hz technology and Resolution+.
The TV is also one of the first we've seen to support the HDMI 1.4 Audio Return Channel (ARC), which means you only need to connect one HDMI cable to get two-way sound between your TV and receiver — no need to hook up a separate digital cable to get TV sound. However, at present only a couple of receivers support this feature as it isn’t a compulsory part of HDMI 1.4.
The TV includes a number of different connection options including four HDMI ports, two USB slots, Ethernet, a wireless LAN dongle, two components and a VGA input.