Sharp Aquos LC-40LE700E 40in LED Backlit LCD TV - Sharp Aquos LC-40LE700E

John Archer

By John Archer



Our Score:


Before we let matters of mere aesthetics weigh us down too much, though, the 40LE700E’s ugly rear does try to put some sort of smile back on my face by carrying a reasonable bounty of connections. These kick off with a handy tally of four HDMI inputs, with other highlights being an optical digital audio output and a USB port through which you can play JPEG and MP3 files.

In an ideal world the 40LE700E might have included some sort of Ethernet connection for streaming files from a PC or even accessing the Internet. But then this would likely have pushed the set’s price up, and surely what really appeals about the 40LE700E is the fact that it makes direct LED technology so ground-breakingly affordable.

The 40LE700E isn’t without its interesting features, though. Particularly important could be its 100Hz engine, which should hopefully reduce LCD’s traditional motion reproduction problems. It’s also keen to push its green credentials, which include a mercury-free design, and its ability to use 40 per cent less energy than traditional LCD TVs.

Impressive, too, is the set’s reasonably fulsome if slightly unwieldy colour management engine, a gamma sliding bar adjustment, noise reduction routines, and the option to deactivate the 100Hz engine if you don’t like what it’s doing with some specific sort of source material.

In assessing the 40LE700’s performance, the first thing to say is that the set really does deliver on direct LED’s contrast potential. After a spot of calibration in the company of our Digital Video Essentials HD Basics Blu-ray - during which we mostly tweaked the backlight and colour settings - I was struck by just how profoundly deep the set’s black levels are capable of getting. There’s practically none of the greyness around that’s so evident to some extent on almost all CCFL LCD TVs, leaving dark areas looking cinematic and natural.

Even more striking is the way these profound black levels are achieved right alongside - as in, within the same frame - really bright and punchy light picture elements. The overall brightness of the image just doesn’t have to be reduced as much as with normal - or edge LED - LCD TVs in order for the screen to produce a convincing black level.


January 27, 2010, 6:12 am

Nice review John, thanks.


January 27, 2010, 11:26 am

Good review.

There's clearly a big style disadvantage over the current side lit LED models, but nearly £1,000 difference for the equivalent Samsung?

If Sharp can overcome the motion blur issues for a £100 or so, I can do without a 3 cm deep panel in favour of saving £900. Hell, I can buy 2 of them and still have change.


January 27, 2010, 2:08 pm

I have to admit that with LCD vs Plasma the very reason I've stayed with Plasma for the past 6 years is not backlighting / black levels, but motion-blur. I just can't handle this at all, it gives me headaches and during big panning / action sequences just makes me want to turn the set off completely.

I'm still not convinced that LCD has totally solved this issue and I'll never buy one until it fully has. Perhaps with all the 100 / 200 / 600 / 1200 / 12000000 MHz we are getting there though. Give it a couple of years.


January 27, 2010, 3:34 pm

I'll ask again. Input lag figures? No?

They're supposedly quite good on this particular TV, but it would be nice if you could include these figures in your TV reviews for everyone to see.


January 27, 2010, 3:51 pm

@Metalex: No, this is not something we shall be looking at in our TV reviews.


January 27, 2010, 4:19 pm

In my opiniomn motion blur has been largely eliminated on the latest 100/200hz Samsung, Philips and Sony LCDs, but is still noticeable on the Sharp ones. I've had a Samsung 46B8000 (200hz) since mid last year and have never experienced motion blur at all.


January 27, 2010, 8:54 pm

Ed, that's dissapointing, as it is quite a big consideration for gamers who are aware of the issue. For those that aren't aware, input lag figures would educate them and potentially stop them making a mistake when purchasing a TV.

jamie anderson

January 28, 2010, 11:36 pm

Reviews of this range on other sites have indicated that individual elements of the LED backlight array cannot be dimmed independently of the others - i.e. that they all get brighter & darker together.

Who is right?

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