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My final issue with the 37RV555D's pictures is that standard definition pictures aren't very hot. Seeing the 37RV555D so soon after Toshiba's own 42ZV555D, with its Resolution+ processing, it's impossible not to be struck by how much softer they look. Especially if you've got the set's MPEG noise reduction system switched on, which you probably will unless you're watching a DVD or an unusually clean Freeview broadcast.
Even compared with more ‘normal' TVs - i.e. those without Resolution+ - I'd say the 37RV555D's standard definition pictures are pretty average. Especially as they have a habit of making skin look a bit waxy too.
For all these moans, though, the 37RV555D still manages a score of seven for image quality. So I'd better explain why.
One significant reason is the sharpness of HD images, provided there's not much motion going on. You can see pores, textures in clothing, individual blades of grass on football pitches - all those lovely small things in TV life that make HD so special. Also likeable is the picture's colour tone. For aside from the occasional skin tone issue with standard definition, colours generally look quite believable and rich.
Next, while moving objects don't look very crisp, they do at least pass across the screen quite fluidly, without judder. The set's noise reduction routines prove quite sophisticated at reducing mosquito and MPEG blocking interference, too, and finally, whatever issues I might have with the 37RV555D's black level response, it is at least fair to say that the set's dynamic contrast system is both astute in its brightness-tweaking judgments and fast-reacting enough not to leave dark scenes looking unstable or flickery, as can happen with some rival dynamic contrast arrangements.
And so we come to the 37RV555D's audio. Which is…OK. As with the 42ZV555D, it's at its best when cranked good and loud. The reason for this is that you need to have the TV's bass booster option switched on, for without it the sound is invariably thin and weedy. Yet with the bass booster on, the mid-range can sound cramped and muffled unless you pump up the volume and give the soundstage room to breathe.
In other words, our score of eight for the 37RV555D's sound quality only applies if you don't have any neighbours to worry about. If you generally have to keep volume levels low, you should knock the mark right down to a six.
The 37RV555D offers some nice specs for its money, and does some good things performance-wise too. But at the same time, given the quality of some other sets we've looked at recently, it's hard to find a really convincing reason to recommend it.
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