As the recession continues to bite, TV manufacturers are having to work ever harder to sell their wares. We've found the 32-inch, HD Ready Toshiba Regza 32AV635DB LCD TV selling online for the eye-poppingly affordable price of £350. Even more remarkably, the 32AV635DB is really quite good.
Splash of panache
In some ways, the 32AV635DB looks its money. Its lines are fairly unimaginative, and its finish looks and feels plasticky. But, in a cheeky two-fingered salute in the general direction of Sony, the Toshiba logo on the centre of the bottom edge is illuminated, adding a dash of panache to the otherwise entirely unremarkable exterior.
The 32AV635DB goes way beyond its budget call of duty with its connections. For starters, it's got four HDMI ports where we would only really have expected two or, at a push, three. Plus there's a dedicated D-Sub PC port, and even a USB jack able to pass onto the screen JPEG photo files from USB storage devices.
Even more startling is the presence on the 32AV635DB of Toshiba's Resolution+ technology. This is a clever processing system that's designed to deliver superior upscaling of standard-definition images to the screen's 1,366x768-pixel, high-definition resolution.
Joining Resolution+ on the processing front is Toshiba's always respectable Active Vision II system, which targets everything from colour and contrast to motion and sharpness.
The 32AV635DB's rather bland on-screen menus play host to yet more unexpected features. Our explorations uncovered, among other things, gamma adjustments, two types of noise adjustment, and even a quite sophisticated colour-management arrangement, whereby you can tweak the hue and saturation levels for each of the six key video-colour components.
At first, we found ourselves slightly disappointed by the 32AV635DB's picture performance, for one simple reason: once they'd been calibrated, images just didn't look very bright compared with those of most LCD TVs.