Toshiba 27WL55A

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Toshiba 27WL55A

Pros

  • Supports 720p natively, slick design, high contrast ratio

Cons

  • Sound lacks bass, no HDMI input

Bottom Line

Toshiba's 27WL55A has good image reproduction and easy configuration; it comes at a reasonable price, too.

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Sporting one of the highest contrast ratios available with LCD technology, Toshiba's 27" 27WL55A LCD TV produces high quality imagery at its native resolution of 720p--although the picture quality does suffer from some inherent graininess.

There is a sensible simplicity to the design of this display. The 27WL55A comes in a grey finish, with a speaker grille below the screen. The internal speakers support SRS WOW surround sound, but even with DVD audio the default sound settings were clearest.

Connections for audio input and output, as well as a variety of video inputs are located on the side of the panel. There is also a VGA/RGB input on the back alongside the aerial input. Surprisingly, Toshiba has not included a HDMI input, a feature which is becoming more prominent in HDTV capable TV's.

Setting up the monitor was a simple process. Configuration was completely automated and we needed little help from the manual. The channel tuning menu system is self-explanatory, and it should be able to tune into channels with out any user input, although there is a manual tuning option if needed.

Hitting the 'menu' button on the remote accesses a set of extended options, which include picture format, picture position, quality adjustment (MPEG noise reduction and digital noise reduction), colour temperature, sound adjustment and teletext options. A separate setting called 'PC setting' can be found in the menu system, and it allows adjustments for computer signals.

The image quality when watching a HDTV signal was clear and well defined. The amount of noise in the image was significant, although enabling features such as MPEG noise reduction and digital noise reduction helped to reduce graininess. The viewing angle was consistent, with little change in contrast or colour from a variety of angles.

This is one of the few screens on which we have been able to run a native 720p image without the image being scaled. When watching a digital TV signal from a HDTV set top box or DVD, the high resolution 720p imagery really shined.

The sound quality through the 10W internal speakers was average. Clear mid-high frequencies were accompanied by weak bass. Sound adjustments, accessed through the tiered menu system, were helpful in compensating for this imbalance.

Overall, the Toshiba 27WL55A provided a good user experience during our tests. Sharp, well-defined images and easy configuration make this one of the better sets available. It's also competitively priced for a 27" LCD TV.

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