on May 28, 2013
I had ordered this TV and right after placing the order, I read the review that was written just before mine. I actually tried to cancel the TV based on that review, but it had already shipped. I'm glad that I couldn't cancel, because the truth is that it's a very nice HDTV.
Someone described this TV as flimsy and such. I disagree with that assessment. Sure, it's lightweight, but that's been the general trend with these TVs for years now. They're getting lighter, they're getting less expensive and they're getting better. Nothing wrong with any of that.
I also do not have any strange light coming from any strange places. Every thing looks and works as it should.
Assembly was simple. 4 screws secure the stand to the base. Slide the stand into the HDTV and secure with 2 more screws. Very easy.
Once plugged in, the TV scans for available channels and does so faster than most. Sound quality is good for a TV of this size and price range. It has a simple and understated but sleek look to it.
Picture quality is outstanding, right out of the box. Do understand that non-HDTV channels don't look nearly as nice as HDTV channels, but that's not the fault of this TV. It's replacing a Hiteker and non HDTV channels on that one looked poor. They look pretty good on this Toshiba. HDTV channels looked pretty good on the Hiteker. They look outstanding on this one and unlike my other TV, I didn't have to spend a lot of time trying to get the picture adjusted just right. I'd recommend the "standard" picture setting. Movie seems a bit dim to me and dynamic is just too very bold.
Let me also say that off-axis viewing, or viewing the picture from a side angle is extremely good. The last 3 TVs I've received for review purposes made it difficult to see a good picture unless you were seated right in front the TV. That's not the case with this Toshiba. It's very forgiving and offers a crisp and clear image almost irrespective of viewing position or angle.
Adding a channel to your favorites is simple. Just hold down the favorites button on the remote for 3 seconds. The remote is well laid out and can be operated by touch. Buttons and numbers are large and easy to read. Conversely, I had to analyze my Hiteker's remote before using it, but I can just pick this one up and use it with almost no thought.
The stand and lower edge of this Toshiba HDTV appear to be metal. In reality, only the vertical cylindrical piece of the stand is actually partially metal (plastic inside), but it's a nice look in any event.
This HDTV is Energy Star rated and has extremely low energy consumption. According to the sticker on the TV, similar TVs are estimated to use between $11 and $25 worth of electricity per year, while this one only uses a paltry $7 per year.
I also like the large number of inputs on this HDTV. There are 3 HDMI ports (2 on the side and 1 on the rear). It has a digital output port, which is useful with certain applications. For example, I have a soundbar that can only be connected via this Toslink digital connection and most TVs in this price range won't have that. It also has a PC input and other inputs as well.
So folks, it's a nice HDTV. I think that the picture quality is similar to what you'd expect from pretty much any of the top brands and is an excellent value in this price range. 120 hz refresh rate means that you should have a very good experience with fast motion sources, and it also has a gaming display for those gamers (like me, on occasion).
I do recommend it highly and again, I'm glad I wasn't influenced by the scary review. 5 stars.
on September 1, 2013
I ordered this TV for friends of mine since I loved my Toshiba 24 inch HDTV. This is their first HDTV, having used an analog with converter box and they love it. It arrived well packed and protected. It was easy to unpack and uncomplicated to assemble to the stand which is square and stable beneath the TV; a little wriggling got even small tight screws (only 6 ea.) to match up perfectly so don't force them. The trick is finger tighten all of them, THEN tighten securely otherwise you risk mismatched holes. Takes maybe 10 minutes from unpacking to plug in.
After plug-in and "ON", the TV goes right to 2 basic setup options. One for cable setup and the other option was channel scan and that's what we did.
PACKAGING: Be aware the TV arrives in original box, plainly visible as a TV. If you deliver to an exposed doorstep, you might want to use Amazon's "gift packaging" which puts it inside a plain brown shipping box.
SCREEN: The screen is matte finish without glare with a high gloss thin black frame for full viewing. The gun metal fascia is only on the bottom of the frame, not completely around the screen. Display blacks are sharp and colors crisp. Some antenna-TV programs will still appear a little blurred (like VCR pictures) but that's not the TV, it's the program. Be aware the pixels may need some time to 'fire up' completely so don't panic if not picture perfect just after start up. When fully activated, all the pixels will fill the screen with a sharp picture. Out of box was very good, and improved with use. My friends are very happy with their TV.
SOUND: With all the bad reviews about sound, I was sure they'd need a sound bar but the sound is fine for a 12 by 12 room (it's a 39 inch TV after all) In fact, bad reviews imply audio quality on the order of a transistor radio. Not so. Speakers lacks decent bass depth most of us like, but there are customizable onscreen audio settings until you choose a sound system you like to beef it up. They use it at 30% volume. If still too loud, go to Sound > Audessy ABX ON and Dynamic Volume OFF. CC1 subtitles are useful to back up low volumes during roommate sleeping hours. I hooked theirs up to their Bose CD player using an RCA stereo wire run to the Bose AUX port, volume controlled with that remote. They use a HDMI port to hook up a Philips 3680 DVP. There are 3 HDMI ports on this TV.
There are multiple connectivity options on the back which allow other peripherals like cable/dish or computer or others like DVD player or better speakers. This TV is multi-purpose but has no ethernet port. Of course you can still get cable internet if you have that service, just not connect it to a home network. It does have a USB port on the left side of the screen for other peripheral uses like photos, security cams or home videos. Left side has dramatically recessed controls which are really awkward to reach, especially if wall-installed, so don't lose that remote! ;)
I've been playing with Toshiba brand TVs for over a year and here are some TIPS:
You may want to use those old 2.1 computer speakers (i.e., 2 small speakers with subwoofer, with a single green stereo plug) for TV sound.
HOW: You'll need two things - a Y wire composed of red/white RCA jacks on one end for the TV with a single male stereo jack on the other end, and a female/female stereo connector to connect both male stereo jacks together (one from the TV and the other from the 2.1 speakers). Connect the RCA ends to Audio OUT ports on the back of the TV. That's: Red/white RCA OUT on TV ... red/white RCA end of Y wire ... stereo male plug into female connector ... female connector other end to green stereo plug from computer speakers. After connecting all the loose ends, mute the TV speakers and turn on the external speakers to desired volume, and you're done. Remember external speakers cannot be controlled with the TV remote because you aren't using the internal TV speakers.
You can use headphones attached to the TV.
HOW: Use this same RCA Y wire and female/female stereo connector for your earphones. Just plug earphones into the connector instead of 2.1 speakers, mute internal TV speakers and use the volume control on your headphones. You may also want to consider wireless options, but ask yourself how many remotes you really want for a 24 inch TV considering the first one you grab is never the right one.
You can use that old boombox for audio:
HOW: Use this same RCA Y wire WITHOUT the female/female connector and insert it into the AUX port of your boombox. You can also use the MIC port, but it may dampen sound quality to just voice, so experiment to see if this is tolerable for you. If your boombox has a remote, all the better. Otherwise you'll have to control volume manually just like using 2.1 computer speakers. Mute Toshiba TV speakers to eliminate audio echo. The boombox set up is what I currently use, and frankly it's heads above Toshiba TV speaker quality, especially for movie sounds. No sound bar needed and the sound quality is better than a bar anyway. In fact, I bought a multipurpose boombox upgrade and it works great. WARNING: You'll be spoiled.
NOTE: You may notice the black audio IN port on the back of the TV, but it will NOT work for external speakers, nor is it a headphone port since it is not audio OUT. This black audio IN port is paired with the VGA IN port permitting sound on your laptop to be fed to the internal TV speakers.` Again, the internal speakers never disable, but must be muted to not compete with external sound systems with an echo.
You may want to watch digital free Hulu or other internet movies/programs on this TV.
HOW: USB to USB on the left side of the screen, or HDMI to HDMI port on the back of the TV to your laptop. If the laptop is next to the TV, you'll need to use a wireless mouse for control of mute, pause, play, etc. or, if next to your chair, a very long USB or HDMI cable to reach the laptop at your seating so you don't have to get up when the phone rings. Open YouTube in tabs and click through videos with a wireless mouse. Dim the laptop display and you're set for movie night.
You may want to use your older DVD or VCR player (no HDMI port).
HOW: If you only have a yellow (or red/white/yellow) RCA wire from your DVD player it'll still work fine on this TV for color movies. Even though there are blu/red/grn video ports on the back of the TV, put your DVD player's single yellow RCA adapter into the green port (upper right of cluster) and ignore the other two colors. You'll still get full color for your DVD movies.
NOTE: If for some reason the DVD disc screen is in black/white, go into TV display Preferences > AV input and change from "Colorstream HD" to "Video" ON to correct this. It's a bit buried in the menu so be persistent until you find it.
Remember: Use your DVD player's own remote; DVD options on the Toshiba remote won't work for it. If you try, the TV screen will display in red: "Not Available". When this first happened, I thought there was a connection problem but turns out the TV remote is standard for both this model and the model with built-in DVD player. The Toshiba remote won't detect any Toshiba TV DVD, hence, "not available". It might work if your external DVD player is also Toshiba brand ... can't hurt to try.
UPDATE: 2013, four months of ownership. Turns out the Toshiba remote really IS a learning remote. All of a sudden it started to control my Philips DVD player out of the blue, no programming at all. I discovered this by accident when I thought I was holding the DVD remote but using the wrong buttons on the Toshiba remote. Voila! DVD player control on the same remote. Took maybe a couple months of use for it to learn. :)
*remote is fussy about line of sight; just pointing in general direction of TV won't do.
If you find this unbearable, Philips makes a stellar combo remote with wider IR spread, quick code pickup and easy button programming. You can just point it to the sky and control the TV (very useful if your face is in a pillow and you don't want to sit up before falling asleep). I use it to control Toshiba TV/Philips DVP/Magnavox VCR/Bose audio without any trouble. Threw all those crap remotes from the drawer in the trash. [Philips SRU5106/27 6 Device Universal Remote Control, ~$13 retail. Buy NEW so you get all the manuals].
*Sound inconsistencies: Before you yell at Toshiba, check all the audio settings on your peripherals. For instance, if you set your cable box volume to low using the cable remote, you'll still have to crank up the TV audio just to hear your program. Or, if the DVD player audio is set low, you may not hear anything out of your TV. Decide which remote you want for TV speaker audio control before sound problems with too many compounded remote commands.
If sound jumps from low to normal to low to high, chances are you have Sound Dynamic turned ON. This feature was meant to level annoying commercial blasts, but may have seconds delay in volume detection. When you return to the program, it may delay while determining commercial break has ended before returning program to normal volume. For many, just not using this feature resolves difficulties. Also, make sure all your cable connections are snug, not just haphazardly jammed into ports so signals are consistent. ;)
*Note for analog-to-HDTV newbies: there's a few second delay time before onscreen viewing, particularly when turning the Toshiba TV ON. And the remote may skip too far ahead if trigger happy. It takes getting used to this digital delay compared to analog TV, but the picture quality and connectivity options are worth the wait.
*Note for analog-to-HDTV newbies:
VIDEO AND SOUND: HDMI carries both video AND sound and is digital; USB carries both video and sound; COAXIAL carries video and sound; S-video carries only digital video; VGA carries only video. RCA red/blu/grn or yellow carry only video and is analog; ONLY SOUND: red and white RCA cables carry only audio and is analog. S/PDIF TOSLINK carries only audio on a digital light beam, so tempting as it may be, don't push anything in that port but a TOSLINK cable. ;)
Be aware audio OUT is for speakers or earphones while audio IN is for sounds to be played through the TV - like sounds from a DVP or VCR to play thru the TV.
*Newbie note about antennas: Out of box you can get a few major broadcast channels depending on where you live, unless you're in a valley or between skyscrapers. To get a bigger selection of free digital programs you'll still need an antenna using a coaxial cable or else cable service. The inexpensive $15-20 Artec HDTV Flat Antenna I was using on top of a converter box on the old portable analog TV, added another 15 digital channels (mostly paid programming, but CLEARER, crisper, color picture w/o-annoying-signal-break-up). For newbies, it attaches to the ANT/CABLE post in the back. If you're in a valley or between skyscrapers, you might want something on the roof or closer to the window or bigger. Antenna size and shape do matter. Better shaped antennas can pull in more digital channels. Cable or dish service gives you much better programming, but this Toshiba out of box will give you a few crisp free digital channels to start. (i.e. for newbies, no converter box needed anymore).
UPDATE: I've since switched to an all metal Yagi style antenna with stronger reception. (looks sort of like a model airplane on a desk stand). It's multi-directional and efficient for HDTV signals. Watch out for plastic imitations.
*TIP: Because the TV is delicately balanced on the base, there is no angle adjustment for viewing. In this case, it may be helpful to set it on a monitor riser, and the turntable on that - or install it on the wall at desired angle with an accessory mounting frame.
They LOVE this TV even in its most primitive setup. Nothing about it is cheap or subpar for the ~$400 price or in its features. This is the first time they've laid hands on a digital TV and it was a breeze to setup, picture is fantastic, sound/volume acceptable for a large bedroom or 14x14 living room. Add an inexpensive digital antenna for more free digital channels and less signal breakup, or a cable service line for better programming, and you're all set.
on May 31, 2013
Just received this tv and noticed there are no reviews, This model must be new so I'll be the first :) The tv is great out of the box (not perfect) but great. The picture is decent but once dynamic mode is turned on, everything is pushed to the max without going overboard and at the same time, makes any other preset modes somewhat useless aka movie, sports, game and standard. I have the 39" and the overall look is great, a very modern look and easy to setup. The tv boasts dynamic picture 1080P 120 hz refresh, usb and hd pc hookup along with decent sound as well. The only thing I really noticed I did not like after I adjusted the picture and sound settings to my liking is that unlike my previous Vizio. I can't adjust this tv to smooth or true cinema motion to change the refresh rate to 120 or mimic it like my old vizio. The option is under the picture settings but its grayed out no matter what input I select or setting I use? This maybe due to the fact that none of the devices I have hooked to the tv via HDMI support 120 hz refresh (ex: standard dvd player, xbox 360 and basic digital cable) do not support a 120 hz refresh rate? I still have to try hooking my pc up via dvi to hdmi, not sure if this will work either and obviously this is quite a concern to me but not a deal breaker by any means. I really don't prefer my movies or games looking like a soap opera but it would be nice to know I can select it whenever. I'll be getting a newer Blu Ray player in a couple of weeks and will update then if I've been able to access the picture mode stated above. Other then that, there are plenty of hook ups (ex: 3 hdmi ports, 1 pc port, 1 USB port, both composite and component hook ups, digital audio and aux. for cable. The remote is pretty basic, all black with fairly large buttons and not much complication at all. I personally would prefer a snazzier remote but I dare not complain for the price which I am very happy with. Over all the tv is great if you're looking for something a little bigger, nicer (maybe for a bedroom or small living room) easy to setup and use. Great picture and sound. A very good deal for the price! I just wish certain advanced picture settings were a little easier to use and that a physical manual (which I'm sure any gamer or tech nerd alike would wish for too) anyone just looking for an all around good easy to setup, use and great looking tv out of the box who doesn't want to mess with advanced features, this is perfect for anyone. There are of course better tvs out there but for a far greater price, for this price range this is among the top of its class.
on August 27, 2013
This review is for the 39", which after considerable research turned out to be the best bang for my buck in this price range.
The first thing I noticed was how lightweight the TV was. My brain did not conclude that the lightweight construction was "cheap", but rather as technologically advanced. It took just a few minutes to attach the stand. The picture was much better than expected, or maybe I just read too many negative reviews from different sites. I honestly was expecting bright blacks, weak colors, dead pixels and perhaps a Tonka sticker on it. No such luck.
I tested it with 1080p Blu-rays, HD preseason football games, and PS3 games. It works perfectly! No dead pixels, no ghosting, no "soap opera effect", just rich colors and a vivid image cruising along at a 120 Hz refresh rate which is fast enough for anything I'll be watching.
I can't ask for anything more in a TV. Unless it wants to cook my dinner.