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Toshiba Regza 40ZF355D review

Barry de la Rosa
13 Feb 2009
Our Rating 
Price when reviewed 
763
inc VAT

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Specifications

40in, Freeview, analogue, 1,920x1,080 resolution, 3D: , 3x HDMI

Toshiba's Regza 40ZF355D is one of the smartest TVs here, with a thin bezel that shows off the 40in screen to maximum effect and makes it seem less intrusive.

The total diagonal measurement of 43in (including screen and bezel) is the same as the two 37in models. It's also the deepest screen here, so it won't fit as close against a wall as other models.

Most of the TVs here have adequate speaker systems that can handle everyday TV, but serious movie buffs will want to connect a proper surround-sound system. The 40ZF355D is the only model here to include a subwoofer output among its audio outputs. However, with its speakers manufactured by Onkyo, you may find that a subwoofer is the only thing you'll need to connect. The 40ZF355D's volume level is so loud that we felt it prudent not to go beyond about 85 per cent for fear of upsetting neighbours.

The TV setup for digital channels took one minute and 10 seconds. The analogue option was greyed out, presumably because the TV recognised a Freeview signal and decided we didn't need to scan for analogue channels. The EPG shows 12 channels at a time, but in a slightly cramped interface. There's a filter for radio channels, and you can skip forward by hour or day using the remote's DVD fast-forward controls. There's also a mini-guide that takes up half the screen and displays what's on next on the current channel.

Connection to a PC was complicated. A number of high resolutions are available over the VGA connection, but the TV only accurately displayed 1,360x768. Colours were too saturated and there are no quality settings. Connecting via HDMI rendered a full 1,920x1,080 desktop, but colours were too vibrant and we had to tweak the image quality settings to get a usable display.

Image quality on Freeview was fine, with vibrant colours. The blockiness of MPEG compression was easily overcome with the built-in noise reduction, although this made the image a little fuzzy. DVD-quality inputs, which have an even lower resolution than Freeview, were great, with hardly any noticeable compression artefacts or ghosting.

The image quality presets for the Blu-ray input were too harsh; the Movie setting was too dark and the Dynamic setting too bright. There's a button to change presets, but there's no way to edit them in the menu. Instead, once you make changes to a preset it becomes the current setting. Colours were generally accurate and vibrant. For better contrast you'll need to select the Black Stretch setting, and there's also a setting to control the intensity of the backlight.

The 100Hz Active Vision M100 HD setting, although touted as a motion-smoothing feature, simply repeats the same image twice. It improves some scenes, but is nothing like Philips' motion-processing technology as seen on the 42PFL7603D. While the Regza's audio quality is impressive and its screen area is large relative to its overall size, the Philips TV has much better image quality and a larger screen for only a fractionally higher price, and is much better value.

Basic Specifications

Rating****

Physical

Viewable size40in
Native resolution1,920x1,080
1080p supportYes
Aspect ratio16:9
HD readyyes
Contrast ratio30,000:1
Brightness500cd/m²
Speakers2x 20W
Bezel (top/side/bottom)20mm/21mm/26mm
Screen depth127mm
Screen elevation106mm
Stand size (WxD)462x306

Connections

DVI inputs0
D-sub inputs1
HDMI inputs3
Component inputs1
SCART2
S-Video input1
Composite inputs1
Audio outputsoptical S/PDIF out, 2x stereo phono, subwoofer phono
Otherheadphone output, CI slot

Tuner

Tuner typeFreeview, analogue
EPG7 day

Environmental

Power consumption standby0W
Power consumption on215W

Buying Information

Price£763
Supplierhttp://www.lambda-tek.com/componentshop
Detailswww.toshiba.co.uk