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We also have to report that the 27WLT56 is hardly a classic black level performer. Dark parts of our source pictures tend to look washed out and lacking in depth and detail, suggesting that a) the 900:1 claimed contrast ratio is a bit unrealistic and b) Toshiba’s Active Vision processing has a key part to play in improving black levels on the company’s other LCD ranges.
Yet another area where we keenly feel the absence of Active Vision LCD is in the 27WLT56’s motion handling. Footballers considerably slower than Thierry Henry prove more than fast enough to cause smearing in the picture, while even just a shot of someone turning their head can look indistinct and laggy. Needless to say, this further contributes to the general sense of fuzziness we mentioned earlier.
And still we’re not done with the bad news, as this Toshiba’s colours also turn out to lack both the vibrancy and the authenticity witnessed on Toshiba’s Active Vision TVs.
At this point in the interests of fairness we really need to inject a little perspective, though. For while the 27WLT56’s picture may be disappointing by Toshiba’s own high standards, by the standards of £800 26/27in LCD TVs generally, it’s probably about average.
Average is probably the best way to describe this Toshiba’s audio, too. On the plus side the set proves capable of plenty of distortion-free volume, and voices tend to sound impressively clear no matter how much of a racket is going on behind them. But there’s a definite shortage of bass, and trebles are sometimes wince-inducingly harsh.
Overall it’s hard not to feel rather disappointed with the 27WLT56. By denying it Active Vision LCD processing Toshiba has in one fell swoop turned it from a potential LCD hero into just another run-of-the-mill LCD nobody. Hardly what we’d expect from a company that’s usually one of the LCD world’s leading lights.