Review Price free/subscription
Although this Samsung model doesn’t have 3D and uses ‘old’ CCFL lighting rather than the trendier edge LED lighting, it does tick most of our other boxes in spectacular fashion.
For a start, it looks utterly gorgeous with its ‘crystal’ finish, red-tinged bezel and classy desktop mount. It’s also very well connected, delivering a startling array of multimedia tools including Samsung’s excellent Internet@TV online service.
Then there’s the small matter of the way it produces some of the best picture quality yet seen from a CCFL TV, particularly when it comes to contrast.
Best of all, though, is the LE40C650’s price. For £529 is preposterously little money for a TV that offers so much.
3. LG 47LE8900
Price: £1,175.01, www.digitaldirect.co.uk
Despite LG being extremely prolific with its 3D TVs this year, ironically the only model from the Korean brand that’s made our top 10 is a strictly 2D affair.
The first key to the 47LE8900’s success is its use of direct LED backlighting, which helps it produce one of the best contrast and colour responses we’ve seen from a flat TV to date.
In fact the set comes endorsed by demanding independent assessment group THX, complete with an excellent THX-calibrated preset.
The set is beautifully designed too, with a rear so slim you’d usually only expect to find it on an edge LED TV and a lovely ‘one-layer’ fascia. Plus it’s got some very handy multimedia playback talents - especially now that LG has finally got some decent content on its NetCast online service.
What’s particularly heartwarming about the 47LE8900, though, is that it delivers its brilliant 2D pictures and lengthy features list for what is, in the circumstances, remarkably little outlay.