It’s beginning to look like edge-lit LED LCD TVs are the new darlings of the AV world. In recent times we’ve seen 32in LED models from Sharp and Samsung, today we’ve got one from Toshiba, and in the next couple of weeks we’ll also be looking at one from Philips! And there are plenty of other 32in models around using the same tech, too.
Toshiba’s 32SL738 is particularly interesting, though. For more than any other 32in LED TV to date, it shows just how deeply edge LED technology has penetrated the mass TV market.
The reason we say this, of course, is that it’s cheap. Very cheap: we’ve found it going for just £338.26, in fact. This sort of price would look eye-catchingly affordable on a traditional CCFL 32in telly; applied to an edge LED model, it’s nothing short of a revelation.
What’s more, there’s nothing about the 32SL738’s exterior that screams ‘budget’ at you. On the contrary, it’s a very attractive TV, complete with a super-slim profile, high-gloss finish, and pleasingly angular, minimalistic black bezel. In fact, from a reasonable viewing distance it doesn’t look much less stylish than Toshiba’s much more expensive VL series, with their Jacob Jensen Studios design.
The 32SL738’s pricing is somewhat reflected in its connections, though. For a start, it only sports three HDMIs when we’re starting to expect four as standard. Though to be fair, Toshiba might argue that anyone only wanting to spend under £350 on a 32in TV probably won’t be the sort of person with piles of HD Ready kit, and so won’t need more than three HDMIs.
Another absentee that’s harder to get round, though, is an Ethernet port. The biggest single problem with this, even on a price-conscious TV, is that it immediately signals that the 32SL738 doesn’t have a Freeview HD tuner. All you get is a Freeview standard def one.
While we can understand Toshiba’s desire to catch the attention of the public - and websites like this one - by getting the 32SL738’s price as low as possible, it’s also undeniable that Freeview HD tuners have become more or less standard issue. Only you can decide how big an issue not having a Freeview HD tuner is to you - though we guess Toshiba could defend itself by saying that you can get external Freeview HD receivers now for as little as £90. So even if you add that to the 32SL738’s price we’ve found, it still looks like a good value proposition.