Review Price £563.50
Toshiba Regza 40WL753 - Calibration and First Picture Impressions
As you’d hope of a flagship TV - even a surprisingly affordable one - the 40WL753 is well provided for when it comes to picture adjustments. There’s a decent if not world-shattering colour management system for instance, allowing you to adjust the hue, saturation and brightness of the red, green, blue, cyan, magenta and yellow colour elements, plus the offset and gain levels of the red, green and blue primaries.
The static gamma value can be adjusted too, along with the backlight level and even the balance of the black and white image content, via an unusual but effective sliding bar tool.
The last promising features of the 40WL753 are all based on its processing tools. For as well as Toshiba’s pretty much de rigueur Active Vision video processing system, you get 200Hz processing for enhanced motion clarity and reduced judder, plus Toshiba’s always impressive Resolution+ tool for boosting the sharpness of standard definition pictures.
One last thing to mention before getting into the 40WL753’s picture performance is the set’s design. In some ways it’s very pleasant, thanks to the glass cover sitting over its bezel, and the way that cover extends a centimetre or so beyond the blackness of the rest of the bezel. However, the bezel’s size might prove daunting for some people, extending as it does the best part of two inches out around the screen.
Another little design flaw that will affect potential wall hangers is the way many of the set’s connections just face straight out of the TV’s rear, rather than allowing sideways access.
In action, the 40WL753’s pictures follow the common theme of Toshiba’s current edge LED sets. Which isn’t altogether a good thing, alas.
The main problem is that old edge LED chestnut of inconsistent backlight levels. Very dark scenes reveal pools of extra brightness in each of the set’s corners, plus three or four more subtle but larger patches of extra brightness elsewhere. While these patches of light inconsistency only show up with very dark material, whenever you can see them, they’re seriously distracting.
It doesn’t help matters that as with most LCD TVs, contrast levels are reduced and the inconsistencies highlighted if you have to watch the TV from much of an angle.
This is all particularly upsetting because the set’s black level response otherwise isn’t that bad. Not on a par with the best plasma or direct LED TVs, obviously, but certainly a good effort by the standards of CCFL and edge LED TVs. Scenes with a mixture of dark and light content thus look reasonably punchy and dynamic, if not as explosive as the very best TVs around.