Sony Bravia KDL-46HX923
As stylish as it is overpriced, Sony’s 3D-ready KDL-46HX923 is a high-flyer for all the right reasons. With edge-to-edge Gorilla Glass, integrated Wi-Fi and detail infused, high contrast HD imagery, it screams Business Class.
Of all the TV portals currently on offer, Sony’s Entertainment Network offers perhaps the richest supply of IPTV. With catch-up, YouTube, Daily Motion, LoveFilm, sundry bizarro channels, plus Sony’s own Movies Unlimited VOD film service, it’s hands down the best choice if you’re looking to save money on a traditional pay TV service.
Video file playback from USB includes MKV and AVI, while MP3s play back with album art. Across a network the TV drops support for MKVs, which is a bit clumsy.
Reg Rating 80%
More info Sony
Toshiba Regza 46WL863
This high-end 3D-ready LED LCD isn’t just smart, it’s a Mastermind. Sporting Toshiba’s proprietary multi-core CEVO Engine, it’s able to turn significant chunks of silicon over to processor-intensive tasks such as 2D-to-3D conversion and picture enhancement. The brand’s Resolution+ detail booster now makes streaming IPTV content, as well as Blu-ray and broadcast TV, look cleaner and sharper.
Unfortunately, this TV isn’t so canny when it comes to net connectivity. The brand’s online portal, Toshiba Places, still appears to be in unofficial Beta. With the exception of BBC iPlayer, YouTube and DailyMotion, available IPTV sources are subscription and there’s not much else of interest. At least when it comes to USB file playback, the set gets to shine. However, across a LAN video streaming runs dry, with only MPEG files trickling through. All brains and no brawn? ®
Reg Rating 85%
More info Toshiba
Ten... smart TVs
I can't help to think that the IP part of these TVs will be obsolete in a couple of years and you'll be stuck with a expansive display with non supported IP bit.
Worthless 'checkbox' round-up
I hope no-one ends up buying a TV based on this article alone
The author has just written the manufacturers' specifications for each set and given a "reg rating" verdict based on advertisement material only. If you don't have any access to these units then you should at least drop the "reg rating" factor. The first two LG units get a 90% verdict, yet only the Cinema version gets the thumbs up icon. Why??
If you actually reviewed these units, just mentioning MKV or AVI support is worthless unless you truly test these features. Does the MKV support include chapter support, or multiple audio/video/subtitle tracks, external subtitles? MKV is still evolving standard you know. I'd also like to know how sluggish the UI is when dealing with USB for example, or can you expect the IT declined people to use the streaming services or USB files easily?
THE TV MIGHT BE SMART....
but the stuff that ends up on it is usually crap!
@AC: " the IP part of these TVs will be obsolete in a couple of years..."
Agreed - in fact, they're already obsolete. We but a much cheaper TV (fantastic display, but not "smart") and plugged an AppleTV into it. Suddenly the TV is just a bigger display in the household as an extension of anything from our phones to the desktop computers, and we stream media, games, and TV from all these sources as required. There's no need for the TV to be "smart" - it's just a big display for the smart devices we already have.
Are any of these TVs smart enough to allow the user to sort the channels into a sane order?
No? All I want is a big screen and that ancient ability that all TVs once were capable of. Nothing more.