Product Type: Acoustic Solutions 3D LCD TV
Newest Review: ... factor for my purchase and at £200, it could have had 500 dead pixels and I wouldn't have complained. It's taken the best part of 4 year... more
Budget TVs never used to be this good.
Acoustic Solutions 32" HD Ready LCD
Member Name: illogicology
Acoustic Solutions 32" HD Ready LCD
Advantages: Great price, reliable
Disadvantages: Poor sound, still a budget model.
It has been nearly four years now since I picked up this TV for a brilliant £300 at Argos. Released just as LCD TVs became affordable, it was probably the best balance between price and screen size I'd ever seen and just had to grab one. For those that don't know, Acoustic Solutions is an Argos badge stamped on electronics they seem to acquire from a range of different sources; this means that the quality is unpredictable at best. Fortunately, I've played the Acoustic Solutions lottery a few times before and know what to expect.
This TV was an excellent quality for the price at the time but is still a budget set. The first advantage it offers is a very stable little stand, I've been my usual clumsy self around it on many an occasion and have yet to send it crashing to the ground. The contrast ratio is a modest 1500:1, this offers some acceptable blacks but don't expect the kind of deep shades you'd get with a £500 set. Colour is clear and the refresh rate is acceptable for TV with very little signs of smudging or blur but when gaming this can suffer at 60fps. The set has very little in the way of post processing, it offers some basic digital noise reduction and sharpness tweaks but not much else. A minor benefit is also the surface of the screen which is not hugely reflective and remains watchable through a fair amount of daylight. Configuration tools for colour, contrast, brightness are all here but not much else. They are easy to configure though as both the remote control and on screen menus are very intuitive and setting up the TV should take much more than half an hour from opening the box.
Where this TV lets itself down is in the audio department. This is hardly a surprise, since the move to flatscreen I haven't seen very many TVs with decent sound output. Unfortunately the speakers here are below par even when compared to similar sets, sound is tinny and carries little bass, it also degrades significantly at higher volumes. This is easily fixed by fitting some half decent external speakers but it's still a shame that it is necessary.
At a good size and fair quality, this set is great for your first HDTV or even a spare set for a big bedroom. It lacks some of the bells and whistles of more expensive sets but it offers a lot of quality for not so many pennies. Real videophiles could be turned off by the choice to stick with an HD Ready resolution but it handles most sources well and always provides a picture that pops. If it has any drawbacks it is that older DVDs players or games consoles when fed through SCART cables tend to scale poorly, if you're using a cheaper freeview box or an older DVD player then it would probably be worth upgrading to a model with HDMI output. Otherwise this is an easily recommendable, budget TV.
Summary: Worth the cash if you have a pair of extra speakers kicking about.
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