Toshiba LED screen

Toshiba 40TL963B

My Samsung LCD gave up the ghost recently and although its fixable with a soldering iron and new capacitor. I pretty much decided a while ago that its time for an upgrade. I bought the Samsung almost 6 years ago I think and it was one of those 720p/1080i LCDs.

I finally bought a Toshiba 40TL963B because it seemed to have most things I wanted.

Top of the list DLNA, Freeview HD, USB recording (well its useful now and then) and of course 1080p. You will notice I didn’t include 3D because frankly the idea and reality of 3D at home makes me break out in hives on the inside of my mouth. Funny thing is the Toshiba actually supports 3D but I won’t be using it ever. Worst still it has that turn 2D into 3D mode which makes me break into hives in places I’d rather not say.

I decided to stick to 40 inch because the next one up was 46 inch rather than 42 inch. It certainly looks smaller because the bezel is about 15mm deep around most of the frame.

To date I haven’t really drove the screen because my xbmc box is set to output 720p. The freeview HD tuner works well and I was pleased to be able to see the paralympics in HD. Things look great in HD and as the review says, SD content looks a bit smudgy. Its ok but noticeably bad. The review is right about that and also about the black level which looks like black ink (this is a good thing). Actually when I changed the Xbox 360 to 1080p and loaded up Geometry wars 2, it felt like I was play on a surface which was best described as the night sky.

Not even touched the Toshiba web TV crap except to get DLNA working, XBMC blows away everything Toshiba’s places item can do and will ever do.

So generally I’m happy with my purchase. I didn’t want 3D but the price difference meant I would only be paying an extra 30 pounds for 3D capability and I would also get higher refresh rates too. Yes it could be nicer about SD content but its only on Freeview SD content I notice it.

Author: Ianforrester

Senior firestarter at BBC R&D, emergent technology expert and serial social geek event organiser.