Oddly, the 32GD8E’s black level performance both wraps up the TV’s strengths and introduces its weaknesses. On the plus side, dark scenes look black enough to ensure that they possess plenty of dynamism and scale. Yet at the same time bits that should look black tend to adopt a slightly bluish hue that occasionally during dark scenes counters the generally natural colour toning described earlier.
Our other main gripe with the 32GD8E’s images is that something about the aggressiveness of their presentation seems to slightly exaggerate MPEG noise in digital sources, especially its own built-in digital tuner. If we were being really picky we might say a touch more brightness wouldn’t have gone amiss either – but the vivacity of the colour palette at least provides some pretty tasty compensation for this.
The 32GD8E continues its solid form with its audio, producing smooth and believable vocals, surprisingly healthy dollops of bass, and unusually rich treble detailing free of the sort of harshness that’s common in the budget zone. Our only concern arises during loud action scenes, as a slight lack of raw power causes things to start sounding a bit muddy.
Yes, the LC-32G8E lacks the balls-out glamour of Sharp’s upcoming new LCD stars, and no, its performance won’t give the very best LCD TVs in town sleepless nights. Yet placed within the context of its hugely reasonable sub-£600 price point, it’s a budget option that you’d be foolish to ignore.