Toshiba Regza 32UL863B
A 32 inch TV for the end of the year
The latest TV to come this year is Toshiba’s Regza 32UL863B and, from its many advertisements, sounds like a device that everyone should buy. Two of the most important selling points of this model are the price and Places smart TV portal. We were curious to see if the company brought something more exciting than today’s offers, so we tested this TV and came to the following conclusions.
A lot of connectivity options
Comparing the Regza 32UL863B with its bigger sibling, the 46UL863, was a bit of a disappointment in terms of looks, because the latter’s dimensions underlined the beautiful design and slim body of the UL863, while the dimensions of the model we tested didn’t. Looking at the back of the device we saw that it was as slim as ever and that the bezel was even a lot trimmer than before.
If you want to buy a TV with a generous amount of connectivity options, the Toshiba Regza 32UL863B should be your first pick. You can use one of the 3 USB ports, 4 HDMI ports, a D-Sub PC port and many others. The latter enabled the device’s display to be used as a monitor for our computer and the USB ports gave the possibility to play back things like photos, videos and the like from USB storage gadgets or record content from the device’s Freeview HD and satellite tuners to USB HDD. And, if your Windows 7 PC enables DLNA, the TV described in our review is able to support playback of multimedia documents on it.
Integrated Wi-Fi system
Once you do that, the product lets you enjoy the DLNA capabilities through an integrated Wi-Fi system, which at the same time means that you won’t have to buy a USB Wi-Fi dongle. Forget hanging the TV on a wall: its connectivity options are on its back, not on the sides, thus making it hard to access them.
There had to be something amiss with this product, and here it is: as opposed to advertisements, the Regza 32UL863B didn’t improve its trademark online Places service. The video ones are the usual YouTube, The Cartoon Network, Dailymotion and so on. Apart from that, few of these services are free of charge. There’s, however, something new: a Facebook application. But that’s very little and we don’t even know if there will be a Twitter app in the future. Another con: Toshiba hasn’t found a solution to the problem of not being able to open YouTube or the iPlayer within the main menus situated in the Places area.
Weak viewing angles
The onscreen menu is a two-wheel one; during our tests, it provided us with a multitude of adjusting options for the TV’s picture. Backlight consistency, for one, didn’t produce clouding and wasn’t uneven. The only times we saw problems with illumination was on very dark sequences and black levels weren’t that good. We enjoyed the device’s active backlight control a lot, because it didn’t feature light blocking, a rare quality on nowadays’ edge LED dimming systems. Colors especially were top-notch and contrast was excellent. After setting the backlight to the most efficient level, dark areas didn’t provide as much shadow detail as possible. The performance of natural motion was totally better than other Toshiba TVs; blurs didn’t exist and there were no lost pixels.
Viewing angles on this TV were bad; once we got the device 30 degrees off axis, we couldn’t see what was happening on the screen as clearly as on other sets. Sound was overall decent, but you should consider a different TV if you want better audio quality.
The Toshiba Regza 32UL863B is eons better than its predecessor. The only flaw: the Places online system.
|Display Type||LCD, backilit LED|
|Panel Size||32 inch|
|Max. Resolution||1080p, 1920 x 1080 pixel|
|Display refresh Rate||100Hz|
|Freesat HD||Not available|
|3D Ready||Not available|
|Digital Audio Out||1 (optical)|