Review Price free/subscription
Thanks to the ever-impressive Resolution+ processing, the 42RV635D is also an accomplished standard definition performer, with far more resolution and crispness in its standard def images than we usually see on LCD TVs. If I was really picky I'd say the 42RV635D's standard definition pictures are marginally noisier than they were on the 37AV635D, probably because of the greater demands placed on the Resolution+ engine by the need to upscale standard definition to 1,920 x 1,080 pixels on the 42RV635D versus the 1,366 x 768 pixels of the 37AV635D. But the difference is minor, and doesn't stop the 42RV635D from being one of the best affordable standard definition LCD performers in town.
In ideal viewing conditions, the 42RV635D scores a comfortable 8 for its pictures. But please note that a couple of environmental factors can knock this down to a seven if either issue represents a problem for your particular viewing room.
The most upsetting of these issues is the screen's limited viewing angle. You really do only have to sit 20 to 30 degrees from directly opposite the screen to find its black level response dropping off dramatically, with loads of extra greyness coming into play. The problem is less likely if you've got a large room, where viewing angles to the screen won't be as acute, but if your living room is rather small and you've got a family sufficiently large that one or more of you will have to sit to the side, I honestly think the problem could become really irksome.
The other thing to make you aware of is that although you don't have to keep the 42RV635D's brightness and backlight settings as low as the 37AV635D in order to achieve a convincing black level, the picture, when ideally calibrated for movie viewing, can still look a touch short of brightness - especially in a bright room. Though on the upside, the screen is very good at soaking up reflections.
Turning to the 42RV635D's audio, it's… OK. The tiny speaker strip along the set's bottom edge can produce more volume without distorting than I'd expected, and disperses the sound over a pleasingly wide chunk of your living room. Treble detailing is quite acute too, and vocals tend to stay clear even during a pumping action scene.
Predictably there isn't enough bass depth around to stop the brisk trebles from sounding rather dominant and the sound mix thus a bit harsh when the going gets tough, but it's still a respectable enough effort for its price level.
As well as potentially saving you a few quid in its lifetime with its reduced running power, the 42RV635D offers a more consistent performance level between HD and standard def over its cheaper AV635 siblings. As such, it's a really good value proposition, provided you aren't likely to find yourself sitting to the TV's side all that often.