Sony MFM-HT75W 17in Multifunction Display - Sony MFM-HT75W 17in Multifunction Display Review

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However, the design is as clever at the back as it is at the front. The stand is on a hinge and is weighted so that it stays firmly on the desktop enabling you to tilt the screen forward and back with one hand in order to get the best viewing angle.


So the screen is well connected and looks fabulous. But how does it perform. Well, the X-Black screen immediately makes its presence felt with a bright shiny image. The first connection I tried was on my PC via D-Sub. Using this, text in Word documents and web pages looked quite blurry. However, when I switched to D-Sub the problem went away immediately. I’d recommend avoiding the D-Sub connection if possible. When viewing windows the screen had a cool bluish tinge to it. However, colours do look especially strong and vivid, again thanks to the X-Black display. Running through our Display Mate tests echoed this, with strong colours and smooth scaling right down to the ends. However, several tests revealed compression at the high end. This is probably a by-product of the X-Black screen creating a brighter image with the loss of some contrast at the top of the brightness curve.


Watching DVDs on the screen connected over DVI was a real treat though, especially with something bright and colourful such as Finding Nemo or the slash of Yoda’s lightsaber against that of Count Dooku in Attack of the Clones. Often screens of this nature suffer from poor viewing angles, but it wasn’t the case with the Sony with no major colour shift to the sides or above and below.


Testing with a regular analogue terrestrial feed revealed that inevitably poorer sources don’t fare as well on the screen, which makes it a real shame that Sony hasn’t integrated a DVB tuner. The screen does a good job of zooming and scaling TV pictures to fit the display and auto tuning was quick and easy via the remote. However, after channels were detected they weren’t in the correct order and I found difficult to reassign them. Teletext was present and correct with colour coded Fast Access buttons on the remote and there’s a picture-in-picture function as well.


As far as the remote is concerned it looks as though Sony used up all of its design budget on the screen. It definitely doesn’t match up to the cool looks of the display and though it’s easy enough to use it feels plastic and insubstantial in the hand. If you do lose it down the back of the sofa there’s a line of controls down the right hand side.


Pleasingly, the Sony’s sound is as good as its pictures. It’s not going to fill a large room but there’s a decent enough mid-range output to make for a pleasurable listening experience.


So all-in-all the Sony should have served up an ace with the MFM-HT75W. The problem is the price. The cheapest place we could find it was for an eyebrow raising £450, while most sites have it for an eye-watering £500 or more. This is really a lot of money considering you can now this 26in Acer for only £565.76. Certainly anyone who’s looking to buy a 17in screen, won’t have the space or desire for a larger screen, but it does highlight the Sony’s relatively high pricing.


”’Verdict”’


The question is then, how much do you want a Sony? It outperforms the 17in Samsung and has better quality connections than the Toshiba and wins out on the style front. But although it looks good the price is too rich for our taste and I’d recommend looking elsewhere or waiting till the price comes down.

Score


Score in detail

  • Image Quality 9
  • Value 7