Not surprisingly the Finlux 40S8070-T’s online content isn’t as prodigious or as classily-presented as that of the mainstream TV brands. But there’s still quite a bit more going on than we’d expected. Among the service highlights are the BBC iPlayer, Viewster, Twitter, Facebook, iConcerts, ITN News, Youtube, MyAlbum.com, and the TuneIn internet radio app. There are 27 apps available in total, with a little box at the bottom indicating that Picasa should soon be joining the available services.
Clearly Finlux’s Smart TV network currently lacks the sophistication to handle payment transactions, so there’s no place for subscription- or rental-based like Netflix, LoveFilm, and Acetrax. But this is no more than we would have expected of a budget TV online service, really.
It just so happened that during our tests the England v France Euro 2012 game came on (total coincidence, obviously…). And right from the off we were pleasantly surprised by the quality of the images on show.
For starters, the set didn’t fall prey nearly as badly as we would have anticipated to motion blurring. For while there wasn’t the same total clarity over moving objects witnessed on the recent high-end LCD stars from Sony, LG, Panasonic and Samsung, you could still make out the numbers on the players’ shirts even when watching wide-angle shots. Also, crucially, there’s no sense of smearing around or behind the players as they charge about.
There is a little smoothing of the grass mowing lines during camera pans, but plenty of far more expensive TVs than the 40S8070-T suffer with that too.
Good HD sharpness
ITV HD pictures aren’t by any means the most sharp and detailed HD pictures in town, but the Finlux 40S8070-T does a fair job of ensuring that they do at least look genuinely HD – so long, at least, as you avoid the provided noise reduction system, which tends to introduce too much softness to proceedings as it goes about attempting to smooth away noise which, frankly, wasn’t there in the first place.
The NR is obviously of more potential use when watching the horrendous mess of ITV’s standard definition footie footage, but to be honest the processing engine isn’t nearly clever enough to improve things here either, instead just making pictures look even softer.
We’ve been sidetracked into a couple of negatives here, though, when there are actually more good points to discuss. Like the 40S8070-T’s colours, which tackle the greens of the pitch, the blue of the French shirts and the white of the English shirts in surprisingly credible fashion for what is, let’s not forget, a budget TV.
Switching to less dramatically colour-rich fare reveals a lack of finesse to the TV’s palette that leaves skin tones a touch plasticky and the colour mix overall a bit cartoony, especially with standard definition. But at least colours are vibrant and the picture is generally bright, neither of which can be taken for granted on a TV as affordable as the 40S8070-T.
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