Setting the AT3720 up is not exactly fun. The auto-tuning system kicks in immediately when you first turn the TV on, as you’d hope, but then makes seemingly no attempt to automatically put the channels it finds into the customary order. Even worse, it doesn’t dispose of any weak ‘ghost’ channels it may have picked up along the way. Grr. The level of manual input thus required to get the tuning sorted out hardly helps you forget the lack of a digital tuner!
Making operational matters still worse is the AT3720’s pretty dismal remote control, the buttons of which are rubbery, fiddly and unhelpfully laid out. Features turn out to be in pretty short supply generally. In fact, aside from a fairly basic noise reduction system, the only feature of significance is the set’s ability to take a 1080p feed from our Xbox 360 via the component video jacks. Oddly, however, we got no 1080p joy from our Marantz upscaling DVD deck when we hooked it up via HDMI.
While we’re discussing the HDMIs, we also have to say that we weren’t impressed by how long it takes the AT3720 to shift gears from standard to high definition when switching between the two source types on our Sky HD receiver. Unleashed on our usual variety of HD and SD sources, the AT3720 is a solid performer in many ways undone by a couple of aggravating flaws.
Starting off with Gears of War in 1080i and 1080p from our Xbox 360 (well, we needed an excuse to play it, after all), things really aren’t bad. For starters, the set’s black levels get deep enough to just about cope with the game’s taste for darkness, meaning you don’t have to squint to make out what’s going on in dark corners as heavily as with some rival LCDs.
The picture also looks supremely sharp; in fact, at times it looks so crisp and detailed that you almost start to imagine the set is using a 1,920 x 1,080 pixel count. Colours are vibrant and solid too, with our only serious niggle at this stage being that stark edges can sometimes look over-emphasised, making the picture feel uneven.