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Toshiba 26AV505DB review

Toshiba has played it safe with the ’505 – but, at this size and price, there’s nothing wrong with that Tested at £360.00

What Hi-Fi? Verdict

Toshiba has played it safe with the ’505 – but, at this size and price, there’s nothing wrong with that


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    subtle colour palette

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    good motion handling

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    clean and stable upscaled images


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    A little soft and lacking in dynamism

Few manufacturers do affordable home cinema kit as well as Toshiba, and this 26in TV is a solid performer at a very reasonable price.

To keep that price down, the company has gone for basic, though not unattractive styling, and has simplified the connections by leaving-out an S-Video input and sound outputs.

We don't believe these will be significant losses for the majority of buyers; they will be more interested in HDMI inputs, of which there are two.

The menu system is a typically clear and simple affair, which guides you through the set-up process without fuss. Calibration is also straightforward, and although it has a couple of modes that you'll want to experiment with, most options are pretty self-explanatory.

With DVD the Toshiba proves itself to be a solid, if not spectacular performer. Detail levels are good and colours are very natural indeed.

Compared to the very best, the picture is a little soft and lacking in punch, but it's by no means unpleasant, and the Toshiba is a confident handler of motion.

A great little mover
This is a trait that's also apparent when it's asked to display a 1080p/24fps image from our Blood Diamond Blu-ray. Once again, motion is extremely smooth and free from smearing, and detail levels are now very close to the competition.

There is still a slight softness and lack of punch that doesn't quite bring the best out of the bright, outdoor scenes, but the subtleness of the colour palette makes for a pleasing picture overall.

Freeview is a similar story; from BBC News 24 to Scuzz, the picture is decent and clean, if not earth-shatteringly exciting.

Finally, where sound is concerned the Toshiba offers a typical flatscreen delivery – a bit shouty at the top but generally listenable.

If you're expecting excitement and wow factor, the Toshiba isn't for you; but if you're after a natural delivery and excellent usability, it's a highly recommended budget set.

What Hi-Fi?, founded in 1976, is the world's leading independent guide to buying and owning hi-fi and home entertainment products. Our comprehensive tests help you buy the very best for your money, with our advice sections giving you step-by-step information on how to get even more from your music and movies. Everything is tested by our dedicated team of in-house reviewers in our custom-built test rooms in London and Bath. Our coveted five-star rating and Awards are recognised all over the world as the ultimate seal of approval, so you can buy with absolute confidence.

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