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All these strengths actually get close to seducing you into believing that the N4060w is something of a home cinema dream come true. But the longer you live with it the more you see past the surface appeal and one or two cracks start to show through.
Dark scenes, for instance, suffer two problems. First, while the set actually has a decent stab at portraying believably deep blacks, those blacks look rather hollow and tend to adopt a slightly blue tone – a fact which inevitably doesn’t do the tones of other dark colours any favours.
We also feel that the picture deteriorates slightly more than it ideally should while watching standard definition, presumably because of deficiencies in the N4060w’s scaling capabilities. This deterioration isn’t all to do with the picture simply losing its crispness, either; it also seems to us that standard definition colour tones, even during bright scenes, don’t look quite as ‘right’ as they do during HD viewing.
Our final niggle also occurs while viewing standard definition sources, and concerns some occasionally acutely over-cooked edges. By which we mean that edges of objects in the picture sometimes glimmer and stand out from the rest of the picture to quite a distracting degree. We managed to calm this problem down a little with judicious tweaking of the brightness, contrast and sharpness levels, but it refused to vanish completely.
First impressions of the N4060w’s sound are promising, as it sounds reasonably clear, smooth and detailed with normal ‘daytime TV’-type programmes. But the heavier demands of a decent film soundtrack soon expose a fairly serious lack of bass that can leave action scenes sounding harsh and flat. We were also more aware than usual of slight synchronisation problems between the set’s pictures and sound.
You’ve got to admire ViewSonic for having the chutzpah to make such a bold pricing statement as it has with the N4060w. But ultimately we have to say that if it were our £1250, we’d probably opt to spend it on a better 37in model instead.