Toshiba Regza 37AV615DB
Big screen, small price
While the 37AV615DB handled the brighter cartoon colours of Spiderman quite well, the gloomier world of Gotham City did reveal a weakness in image quality. Darker areas tend to lose detail, and the figure of Batman prowling through the shadows in Batman Begins sometimes became a bit of a murky blur. Sharper contrast would help to display detail in low light scenes more effectively.
Sonically, less than ideal for media centre use
Although the audio quality is adequate for watching television and listening to dialogue, the built-in speakers are a little disappointing, There’s also a virtual surroundsound option that adds a bit of depth – though no real sense of movement – to the sound effects in films.
However, the speakers didn’t do too well when we fired up iTunes on our Mac Mini. Their 20W output provides a reasonable level of volume, but the multilayered harmonies on a few old Queen tracks revealed a rather thin sound, especially on the higher frequencies. We’d recommend a set of external speakers if you plan to use the 37AV615DB with a media-centre computer.
There’s room for improvement on this model – most notably the detail and contrast on darker scenes – but the bottom line is that it provides a good standard-definition image on a big widescreen display, at a competitive price. Home cinema buffs will obviously prefer a Full HD set, but if all you want to do is to watch The Apprentice and the occasional DVD on a nice big screen, then you’ll find that the Regza 37AV615DB makes a good upgrade from a bulky old CRT. ®
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