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I don't mind admitting that I'm more excited by the arrival of Toshiba's strikingly cheap 37AV635D than I am by most 'entry-level' TVs. Why? Because it has the potential to be the best entry-level TV in town.
My reasoning behind these bold words is simply that despite resting towards the bottom of Toshiba's new flat TV range and costing absolute peanuts (under £550) by 37in LCD standards, the 37AV635D carries a little feature called Resolution+.
Resolution+, as regular readers may recall, hugely impressed both myself and fellow reviewer Danny Philips for the cracking job it did of improving standard definition pictures. So finding such a powerful video processing engine on such a strikingly cheap TV is an unexpected treat, and one that has the potential to single-handedly make the 37AV635D a massive hit with today's cash-strapped punters.
Provided, of course, that other aspects of the 37AV635D's pictures don't let Resolution+ down. After all, no TV can get by on one picture talent alone.
As usual, though, we've got lots more scene-setting to go through before getting up close and personal with the 37AV635D's pictures. And this scene-setting gets off to a surprisingly up-beat start with the 37AV635D's design. We're used to Toshiba's entry-level TVs being a touch on the bland, flimsy side. But not the 37AV635D. Its high-gloss finish does a sterling job of hiding any plastickiness in its construction, and the slenderness of its bezel makes it look suitably high-tec. The jauntily angular speaker section running along the TV's bottom edge gives it an extra dash of panache too, especially since the Toshiba name emblazoned across this bottom section groovily illuminates when the TV is switched on.
The air of new-found confidence exuded by the 37AV635D's fascia extends to its connections roster, too. For I was startled to find no less than four HDMIs - at least one more than you've any right to expect for so little money. Plus the TV has a D-Sub PC input and even a USB port for the direct playback of JPEG pictures on to the TV's screen - the first time such an input has been included on an entry-level Toshiba TV.
Turning my attentions to stuff going on inside the 37AV635D, Resolution+ turns out to be just a part of a larger processing system rather splendidly dubbed MetaBrain by the Toshiba marketing gurus. Making up the other main part of the MetaBrain is Toshiba's latest Active Vision 2 processing, one of those 'general purpose' processing systems now found on practically all TVs for improving everything from colours and detail to motion handling and video noise levels.
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