Toshiba Regza 46ZV555DB review: Toshiba Regza 46ZV555DB

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The usual 100Hz processing joins Active Vision M100 processing, with the aim of decreasing film judder and making movies look smooth and natural. You also get the usual noise-reduction modes and picture presets. Toshiba has included a game mode as well, which ensures the TV provides a full-sized image, rather than an under-scanned one, which misses detail around the edges of the screen.

The built-in speakers are powerful enough, at a combined 20W. There is SRS WOW audio processing too, which is designed to increase dialogue audibility and bass response.

It seems logical to start with the Freeview performance of this TV. Sadly, we weren't that impressed. The default settings left us with a picture that had too much colour and didn't look realistic. Tweaking the settings helped greatly, but we still didn't feel this TV was as capable as others we've seen from Toshiba.

HD material, on the other hand, made up for any standard-definition shortcomings. We watched clips from quality movies such as xXx: State of the Union and Walk Hard: The Dewey Cox Story. Both looked lovely, and we couldn't help but be impressed by the colour and detail levels. It's not unusual for a TV to be much better at handling colour from HD sources than SD sources, but the difference between HD and SD on this set is so marked that it's like watching two different TVs.

We also tested the beautiful Dark Knight Blu-ray, and we have to say it was pretty spectacular. We did notice on the IMAX material at the start that some fine lines strobed slightly, but this is a minor irritation in the grand scheme of things. Everything else had the vivid detail we've come to love from LCDs fed with a good HD signal.

The most important question of all, however, is how the Resolution+ technology deals with images, and what difference it makes to the overall picture quality. Having spent a good deal of time switching it on and off while watching Freeview and upscaled DVDs, the result was the same. Shown to other people in the office, we agreed that it really just sharpens the edges of the picture. That's fine with certain material, but it can also result in nasty halos around hard edges, which isn't desirable at all.

Sound from the set was decent too. We noted that, with the bass enhancement turned on, the sound took on a woolly and overcooked sound. However, with the TV set to normal, dialogue was clear and we were able to enjoy it as it was intended to sound. We like the option of plugging in a subwoofer or an AV receiver. We'd suggest that movie lovers implement one of these options, as it will greatly improve the film experience.

In terms of HD material, there are no problems with Toshiba's Regza 46ZV555DB. For Freeview-based viewing, we think there are TVs on the market that do a better job. It's not terrible by any means, but we do think Toshiba is capable of better, and this is reflected in the score.

If you can bear to lose six inches, we love the Toshiba Regza 40ZF355D and think you should get one of those. At this price point, however, Panasonic's 1080p plasma TVs are within reach, and almost certainly a better bet if you're a movie lover.

Edited by Charles Kloet

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