Toshiba Regza 55in LED backlit TV
A room with a view, anyone?
Review Do you watch too much TV? You see, it’s not just the hours you put in: you risk the accusation that telly means too much to you if your screen dominates your living room, and therefore your life. It’s a matter of taste, but arguably a 55in screen is pretty much the limit for respectable viewing and Toshiba’s snazzy SV series can overpower even a substantial-sized room.
Giving it large: Toshiba's Regza 55SV685DB
Still, size, we know, isn’t everything. Perhaps the screen will redeem itself and overcome this shaky start. Please note, though, that this is a massively heavy TV and way too much for one person to manage. Move it and you’ll notice that you can’t avoid handling the screen. That’s because while other TVs have a bezel frame around the LCD, this model had a flush edge-to-edge display. This doesn’t mean the image runs right up to the corners, merely that there’s an overlay called a Full Crystal Panel which covers the entire front of the television.
Toshiba says this front panel improves colour fidelity and image contrast. Don’t worry about those unavoidable finger smears – the makers have thoughtfully included a small cleaning cloth. The appearance of the Regza SV series is what Toshiba calls Deep Lagoon, where a deep black colour fades gradually to white. Like it or not, is a matter personal taste.
This is a premium television, full of advanced features such as LED backlighting with local dimming, fast 200Hz refresh rate, image processing from the ‘MetaBrain’ engine and Dolby Volume, which is designed to manage sound output variations when you switch channels, for instance.
For all this sophistication, however, Toshiba only supplies a 16-page guide, directing users to an online manual for more advanced functions, aiming to save 25,000 trees a year with this reduced paper option, apparently. It’s a laudable goal, but this is a pricey and complex machine and you may feel that going on-line to use your TV is a distraction. This full HD Regza claims a high contrast ratio of 2,000,000: 1 and a speedy refresh rate, which aims to minimise motion smear during action scenes and sport.
Shifting this model is definitely a two person affair
There are plenty of HDMI slots – three on the back and the fourth on the edge for a camcorder or camera. There’s a USB slot and an SD memory card reader, so it’s easy to display photos on the TV. Toshiba also includes a Full Power Down option or, as we used to call them, an off switch. The TV is straightforward in use, with simple and accessible menus. A handy central button marked Quick makes it easy to change the Picture Mode and size, speaker preference and so on. You’ll need more, but not very often.
"save 25,000 trees a year"
A laudable goal, no doubt, but then one should bear in mind that new trees grow spontaneously, never mind through deliberate planting and relatively minimal care (given, most importantly, that the Sun keeps emitting photons). This is in sharp contrast to most other raw materials we are likely to have access to in the foreseeable future.
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