So far our pre-World Cup HDTV reviewing exploits have focussed on pretty large screens. Which makes sense given that high definition pictures really come into their dazzling own the bigger the screen you watch them on. But we think it’s time we made it clear that HD can also look gobsmackingly good on a smaller ‘second room’ TV, like this 20in HD Ready model from Philips. After all, what could be cooler than having HD not just in your living room, but also in your bedroom, study and/or kitchen?
The inherent ‘coolness’ we’re talking about is reflected perfectly in Philips’ design for the 20PF5320D. The way the jet-black screen surround is offset by the more metallic, silvery speakers to either side looks both stylish and futuristic, taking its design cues from full-sized LCD TVs rather than the often plasticky, bland efforts found at the smaller end of the market.
Connectivity is both impressive for a 20in TV and slightly annoying all at the same time. Impressive is a DVI socket, for receiving high definition digital images from a Sky HD receiver or HD DVD player. Annoying is the absence of a dedicated set of the component video inputs demanded by the industry’s HD Ready specifications. Instead you can only get component video HD into the 20PF5320D via the DVI jack and a (provided) component-to-DVI adaptor system. This adaptor system is fiddly, and means you can’t easily simultaneously connect separate digital and analogue HD components.
This connection stinginess is then compounded by the fact that the DVI socket is also the only way of connecting a PC to the screen, meaning that you could potentially have three bits of source kit competing for just one input. Looks like you’ll be making regular trips round the TV’s rear to switch connectors over, then…
A SCART socket on the rear and set of standard definition (S-Video, composite video) jacks down the TV’s side for easy access complete the connectivity in decent enough fashion.