Feeds
75%
Philips 40PFL9704 LCD TV

Philips 40PFL9704 40in LED backlit TV

Black is black?

  • alert
  • submit to reddit

Choosing a cloud hosting partner with confidence

We had rather more mixed results with the network functionality. Philips boasts that the set can provide unfettered Internet access, and that’s true. At first you reach a portal, providing quick access to sites like YouTube and DailyMotion; a further click allows you to enter URLs directly, with on-screen buttons for ‘http’, ‘www.’, ‘.com’ and so on, speeding entry up.

Philips 40PFL9704 LCD TV

Not the slimmest, but sounds good

However, the response was a bit sluggish, and while it makes a decent fist of displaying even complex pages like The Guardian, multimedia support is limited, and some CSS tricks aren’t supported, like drop-down menus. Stick with mobile-orientated sites, and it’s a useful extra, but not earth shattering.

DLNA support is a bit of a mixed bag; we could play VOB files without any problems, though not .mpg MPEG2 files. The spec sheet also boasts support for .AVI files, but that certainly doesn’t seem to include DivX content, nor did our WMV test files play, although some files played from a second TwonkyVision server, but only when transcoded.

To be fair, though, it would be hard to find a DLNA-compliant TV set that doesn’t have compatibility issues these days. All in all, the 40PFL9704 produces a great picture, especially from HD sources, and the network extras may appeal to some users, as might the Ambilight. But it does come with a hefty price tag.

Verdict

There’s no doubt that this set has astonishing contrast, thanks to the segmented LED backlighting. It’s also generously equipped with plenty of inputs, and rather than going for all out for slimness, there are decent speakers too. But the DLNA connectivity isn’t up to that much, and full net access is a gimmick that’s a little sluggish in our view. Paired with external HD sources, it’s a great choice, but price and lack of HD tuners preclude a higher rating. ®

More HD TV Reviews...


LG
42SL9000

Sharp
Aquos
LC40LE700E

Samsung
UE40B7000

Sony
Bravia
KDL-46W5810

Beginner's guide to SSL certificates

75%
Philips 40PFL9704 LCD TV

Philips 40PFL9704 40in LED backlit TV

Stunning contrast levels and good sound, plus decent connectivity make this a serious contender for anyone who has external HD sources.
Price: £1799 RRP

More from The Register

next story
Xperia Z3: Crikey, Sony – ANOTHER flagship phondleslab?
The Fourth Amendment... and it IS better
Don't wait for that big iPad, order a NEXUS 9 instead, industry little bird says
Google said to debut next big slab, Android L ahead of Apple event
Microsoft to enter the STRUGGLE of the HUMAN WRIST
It's not just a thumb war, it's total digit war
Ex-US Navy fighter pilot MIT prof: Drones beat humans - I should know
'Missy' Cummings on UAVs, smartcars and dying from boredom
Netscape Navigator - the browser that started it all - turns 20
It was 20 years ago today, Marc Andreeesen taught the band to play
A drone of one's own: Reg buyers' guide for UAV fanciers
Hardware: Check. Software: Huh? Licence: Licence...?
The Apple launch AS IT HAPPENED: Totally SERIOUS coverage, not for haters
Fandroids, Windows Phone fringe-oids – you wouldn't understand
Apple SILENCES Bose, YANKS headphones from stores
The, er, Beats go on after noise-cancelling spat
prev story

Whitepapers

Forging a new future with identity relationship management
Learn about ForgeRock's next generation IRM platform and how it is designed to empower CEOS's and enterprises to engage with consumers.
Cloud and hybrid-cloud data protection for VMware
Learn how quick and easy it is to configure backups and perform restores for VMware environments.
Three 1TB solid state scorchers up for grabs
Big SSDs can be expensive but think big and think free because you could be the lucky winner of one of three 1TB Samsung SSD 840 EVO drives that we’re giving away worth over £300 apiece.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.