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JVC LT-42DV1 42in LCD TV
JVC was actually the first brand to bring a genuinely ultra-thin - or to use JVC's own parlance, Super Slim - LCD TV to the UK, in the shape of the well-received and decently successful LT-42DS9.
What's more, as well as grabbing the headlines with its extreme slenderness, the 42DS9 bagged itself a European Green TV award from the European Imaging and Sound Association on account of its 'outstandingly low energy consumption in both daylight and dark surroundings'; its use of 'only a moderate quantity of materials'; its compliance with EU regulations on minimizing hazardous materials; its easy disassembly; and finally the fact that a standard ship container could hold at least 50 more 42DS9 boxes than standard 42in TVs.
Not surprisingly, JVC has tried to continue with these green credentials for its successor to the 42DS9, the 42DV1. But as we've seen with our previous couple of TV reviews, the amount of competition in the slim and 'green' arenas is growing fast right now. And so, for instance, the 42DV1's packaging is no longer groundbreakingly small. The box around the Sony KDL-40WE5 is quite a bit slimmer, in fact.
Also, the 42DV1's typical 225W power output, while respectable, is no longer particularly eye-catching when you think that the Sony KDL-40WE5 can get down as low as 88W, and typically runs at well under 200W.
The 42DV1's bodywork isn't significantly slimmer than the 42DS9, either, and so it doesn't stand out as much any more now that so many other new ultra-thin TVs are appearing - at least if you're considering it from the perspective of the 69mm deep section in the centre of its rear that houses the set's tuners. To be fair regarding this latter point, the 42DV1 is only around 30mm deep for around two-thirds of its depth, so it certainly looks exceedingly slim unless viewed from a completely side-on or rear view.
With neither its slenderness nor eco-friendliness helping the 42DV1 enjoy the same unique position that its 42DS9 predecessor did, it's a relief to find JVC upping the 42DV1's game in other potentially telling ways.
On the green front, for instance, the 42DV1 introduces a full mechanical power switch, which leaves the TV using apparently no power whatsoever when switched off. There's also a Radio mode - which deactivates the screen if you're tuned to a radio channel - as well as an initially interesting sounding Eco mode. But this latter feature ultimately turns out to be nothing more than another system that adjusts the image brightness in relation to the light levels in your room.
The 42DV1 also improves considerably in design terms over the 42DS9. For while I was initially suckered in by the 42DS9's then-groundbreaking slimness, on reflection its finish felt a touch plasticky for comfort. The 42DV1's bodywork feels more robust, despite the extreme slenderness of the bezel, and the move to an unusual non-gloss, textured black finish also works well, especially in the way it contrasts so strikingly with the (detachable) sweet little chrome-finished, cross-shaped desktop stand the TV ships with.