HD images also look almost preternaturally sharp, with genuinely staggering amounts of fine detail on display. For instance, as the body of Wallace’s father is carried towards the family home, I felt like I could make out every single blade of grass in the field the cart is crossing.
Unlike with one or two different sets in Toshiba’s latest range, I also found myself relatively untroubled by LCD’s common motion blur issue. Sure, there’s a modicum of resolution loss as objects cross the screen, but actual smearing is kept to a minimum. This means that the general sense of sharpness remains even during ”Braveheart’s” frenetic battle scenes.
As well as the fact that the 46XF355D’s black levels, while improved, could be better still, the set’s picture score is also dented by the way it suffers rather badly with LCD’s viewing angle issue. And so if you sit at any more than 35-40 degrees from straight on to the screen, both the picture’s colour saturation and black level response drop off dramatically.
The other niggle is a familiar one with Toshiba’s latest flat TV range, and concerns the handling of standard definition material. The set just doesn’t manage to upscale Freeview or Sky standard definition images to its full HD resolution as successfully as it might, leaving picture noise looking slightly exaggerated.
When it comes to sound, the 46XF355D’s abilities are actually better than expected given how incredibly small the TV’s tiny bezel requires the speakers to be. Treble effects are clear, voices sound credible, and the mid-range remains largely distortion-free even during the opening landing sequence of ”Saving Private Ryan”.
However, the soundstage is a little narrow, and perhaps inevitably there isn’t much bass to give soundtracks that cinematic feel, making that subwoofer output well worth exploring. Provided, of course, that you can be bothered to partner your self-consciously unobtrusive TV with a ruddy great bass speaker…
Even though I haven’t used ”Forrest Gump” as a test movie on Toshiba’s 46XF355D LCD TV, I have no choice but to conclude the review by saying that assessing a current Toshiba TV is like a box of chocolates: you never know what you’re going to get.
The good news is that today, while we might not quite have a Guylian Belgian Chocolate Seashell on our hands, we do at least have the equivalent of a purple-wrapped hazelnut in caramel Quality Street job.