There are countless trends competing for attention in the gaming notebook and laptop space but not all of them are either useful or benefit the core gaming experience.
Avatec 37in LCD TV
- Incredible value, well defined image
- Reflective glass screen is distracting, some colour shift noticed.
Quality panel with a low RRP
Price$ 2,790.00 (AUD)
Over the past year, the demand for high quality LCD screens has surpassed the demand for plasma displays and much of this can be attributed to the fact that LCD prices are finally dropping to a viable mark for consumers. Avatec, a local distributor of LCD panels, have recently released a series of LCDs at competitive price points that should satisfy the average buyer.
The 37" Avatec LCD TV is a high quality display and is one of the cheapest available LCD's on the market today. The features of the display include high-definition support (up to 720p natively), quality component and VGA inputs, Picture in Picture, virtual surround sound and an internal analogue tuner. While these are standard features for an LCD panel, it is the low advertised price that makes this is an astute purchase.
The design of the Avatec TV is simple, although the logo on the front maybe too prominent and distract users from the screen. There is a protective glass layer covering the front of the panel, which looks very attractive when the screen is off, although we noticed reflected ambient light to be distracting when the panel was switched on. This issue may be avoided by directing room lighting away from the display. The connections, located at the back of the panel, provide a sufficient interface for high definition signal, with a Y-Pb-Pr input and an XGA input for computer use. Other connections include 2 audio RCA inputs, 2 composite and S-Video inputs and an RCA audio out.
Configuration of the panel is simple, as it should be. Tuning channels, selecting input video source and other general controls can only be accessed through the remote control. Plugging in a HD input such as a HD set-top box or DVD revealed the 5 modes of display, including Fill Screen, 4:3, Wide, Cinema and subtitle. For 16:9 video, such as that of a DVD, we found Cinema and subtitle to be the best options, as there was no clipping of the image and subtitles were easily read in both modes. Internal sound support is limited by the two 5 watt speakers, providing reasonable stereo and virtual sound, but nothing close to the sound fidelity an external 5.1 speaker system.
The image itself is very clear and well defined. The Avatec display excels in its bright image (advertised at 500 nits), and resolution (native at 1366 x 768). Plugging a 16:9 computer source into the display also revealed a quality signal, a bonus for computer gamers and home-theatre PC enthusiasts. The viewable angle for the display is advertised at 176 degrees in the horizontal and vertical direction. This is accurate, although we did notice some discolouration towards the wider angles. This colour shift was noticed primarily in imagery consisting of a gradient of similar colours. The contrast ratio, rated at 500:1, is quite standard for LCD TV's.
In all, Avatec's 37" LCD TV is an impressive option for consumers looking towards the larger sized LCD screens. It offers similar, if not better performance than some other well known LCD manufacturers and that too at the lowest RRP we have seen yet. Users' looking for LCD's larger than 37" might want to look up the Avatec name early in 2006.
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