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With Toshiba seemingly focussing more and more on becoming the leading budget TV brand, its once impressive reputation for innovation - at least where its UK operation is concerned - has been on the wane. And in one way the 40SL753 merely confirms this, for by being Toshiba’s very first edge LED TV, it immediately causes us to reflect on just how long it’s been since we saw the first edge LED TVs from the likes of Sony, Philips, Samsung, LG and, to a lesser extent, Panasonic.
Basically, the 40SL753’s arrival is long overdue. So it would be nice if it proves that Toshiba has been using its extra development time wisely in coming up with something a bit special.
Hopes that this may be so are reduced, however, by its lowly price of just £612.70 - something we noticed about the 40SL753 actually well before we figured out its edge LED lighting. This price would look reasonably affordable on a normal CCFL LCD TV, never mind an edge LED model, and it immediately raises worries over what sort of price-driven compromises we might come across.
On the other hand, of course, if the 40SL753D turns out to be much cop, it will be a major bargain. Fingers crossed.
The 40SL753’s design is notably slimmer than the distinctly chunky butt efforts of most of Toshiba’s current CCFL LCD TVs, as we would expect. Though at around 50mm, its depth still has a long way to reduce until it gets close to the ultra-slender edge LED efforts we’re seeing these days from LG, Philips and especially Samsung and JVC. So much as JVC still actually has a UK TV operation these days, at any rate...
Toshiba has also marked its edge LED debut by tweaking the 40SL753’s fascia design, equipping the dark bezel with a transparent outer trim that ends up making the TV pleasingly reminiscent of the look Samsung is using for the mainstream end of its current LCD range.
Turning the 40SL753 round uncovers a good collection of connections. Four HDMIs get the ball rolling, one of which is v1.4 to offer an audio return channel to compatible AV amps. But actually far more interesting are a pair of USB ports, an SD card slot, and an Ethernet port.
These provide, as you would expect, a selection of multimedia features. But sadly the support they offer is more restrictive than we would have hoped. For instance, the USBs and SD card slot can only play JPEG photos, not movie or music files. Worse, while the Ethernet port is capable of streaming in stuff from DLNA PCs, these PCs have to use Windows 7. And even then we found the number of file types the TV worked with extremely limiting.
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