All-round performance is too flawed for us to recommend this Pangoo
Slim with a smart interface
bright, sharp picture
struggles with black levels and motion
average TV tuner
Here's a new, and slightly funny, name to add to the TV market: Pangoo.
It's the European brand of the Chinese technology company THTF, one of the largest manufacturers around, with some 32,000 employees and turnover of 2.4 billion US dollars.
New to Europe, the company aims to take on the Korean and Japanese big boys, and beat them for price and performance… but then they would say that.
The LE-26S700 is a 26in TFT LCD screen, weighing in at £350. That's fairly affordable but you'll find cheaper 26in sets easily available elsewhere, so it's no steal.
Out of the box it's certainly slim, with something computer-monitor-like about its appearance, though it stands a little flimsy on its feet. The remote is presentable enough, even with its familiar, mass-produced look.
More after the break
Sound quality lets it downFirst impressions are skewed slightly by the impressively poor sound. It takes some doing to stand out as lightweight, scratchy and insignificant in the world of flatscreen TVs but we're sorry to say that Pangoo manages to do just that with some ease.
There isn't a great deal of picture processing to contend with – not necessarily a bad thing – but there are plenty of inputs within the smart menus.
Round the back you'll find three HDMI inputs, two USBs, a couple of Scarts, component, S-video, composite, PC in, a digital coaxial input, headphone out and even an ethernet port. Phew.
The latter allows for DLNA streaming, while the USBs are compatible with video, including DivX, audio and images. Impressive – and with a 1366 x 768 resolution (fair enough at this size) it can also accept 1080p/24fps.
Pictures are a mixed bagPicture performance is a mixed bag. The LE-26S700 is capable of punchy colours and bright whites, while it draws edges sharply too.
Detail retention is fair on skin tones and brighter scenes, but the set really starts to struggle with dark scenes. Black levels are poor, struggling to keep any solidity or uncover any real detail.
Fast motion causes the set some problems, too, while the digital Freeview tuner is something of a blunt instrument.
The sound and vision performance is flawed and without a knockdown price on its side not even the impressive connectivity can redeem this Pangoo.