Our Verdict 
The '9604 is one of the best 32in sets we've seen this year, but it doesn't push performance to a level that can justify its price
For 
Huge aesthetic appeal
sophisticated menus
feature-packed
fantastic with Freeview and Blu-ray images
Against 
Price, price, did we mention the price?
Reviewed on

Following the demise of Pioneer TVs, it has fallen to manufacturers such as Philips to produce high-end flatscreens to fill the void.

With a price-tag only a few pennies short of a grand, the 32PFL9604 certainly falls into the top end of the 32in LCD TV pricing spectrum.

Its look and feel is undoubtedly that of a premium TV: the real aluminium, charcoal frame comes over all sultry and sophisticated, while the slick remote control simply adds to the allure.

Philips' funky new menu system looks great and uses bold, neon blue graphics to guide you around a mind-boggling number of picture settings.

All manner of featuresThe Philips' connectivity and feature count is also befitting of a premium TV and includes five HDMI inputs and wireless internet connectivity.

More after the break

Pleasingly, picture performance is also of a high standard. Freeview images are exceptionally stable and clean.

The absence of any significant on-screen noise allows the TV to extract impressive levels of detail. The Blu-ray of Training Day is a notoriously difficult test disc, but the '9604 never panics and displays a balanced, detailed picture.

Black tones boast solidity while movement and detail are generally handled confidently.

But for all its strengths, class-leading sets costing several hundred pounds less can match this set when it comes to performance.

The Philips is very good, but not quite good enough to justify five stars at the price.

See all our 32in TV reviews