The XV32 GT’s budget nature is, however, abundantly apparent in two key areas: black levels and motion handling.
Dark movie scenes, such as those in any of the many churches our brainy heroes visit in ”The Da Vinci Code”, look decidedly grey about the gills. This is true to some extent of nearly all LCD TVs, of course, even some expensive ones. But the XV32 GT’s greyness is more overt than usual – and thus more damaging to the picture’s sense of depth and background detailing.
It comes as little surprise to find the XV32 GT quoting a contrast ratio of just 1,200:1 in a world where many LCD TVs now claim figures of 5,000:1 or more. Nor is it a shock to discover that it doesn’t carry a dynamic backlight system for reducing the picture’s brightness during dark scenes to improve black level response.
When it comes to motion, objects blur and lose resolution sometimes quite severely as they travel across the screen. At its worst, this problem can make action scenes in HD films look like they’re no longer HD.
The XV32’s speakers look pretty meaty. But that sure isn’t how they sound. They produce practically no bass whatsoever, which immediately makes even a gentle action scene sound flat and compressed. Add to this some rather one-dimensional, muddy vocals and a lack of treble precision, and it’s fair to say that it would probably be a good idea to add some sort of separate sound system as soon as finances allow…
The XV32 GT’s sound is poor, and it suffers from a couple of classic LCD picture shortcomings. But when you take that remarkably low £370 price tag into account, overall it’s still better than expected.