Skip to main content

Toshiba SBX4250 review

Average sound, average looks and good connections. The same money can buy better Tested at £205

Our Verdict

Average sound, average looks and good connections. The same money can buy better

For

  • Wide sound
  • Decent detail and clarity
  • There are six inputs

Against

  • Flabby bass lacks power
  • Hint of brightness
  • Hollow dialogue

What Hi-Fi? Verdict

Average sound, average looks and good connections. The same money can buy better

Pros

  • + Wide sound
  • + Decent detail and clarity
  • + There are six inputs

Cons

  • - Flabby bass lacks power
  • - Hint of brightness
  • - Hollow dialogue

This is the first time we’ve had a soundbar from Toshiba in our test rooms.

And it’s a solid effort, combining average sound and design with excellent connectivity. For the price, however, we’re not entirely blown away.

Design

Toshiba SBX4250

Toshiba SBX4250

It looks nice enough, if a bit generic. We doubt many will remember this design, but it’s not as bland as the Boston Acoustic TVee 26, say.

And despite its hard edges and boxy outline, it’s not a very large unit. It will happily sit directly in front of most TVs without blocking the screen.

There are hints of design flourishes: silver-trimmed drivers peek out from behind the black mesh at the front.

A large rectangle in the centre implies a sizeable display, but the actual display (somewhere behind this sheet of plastic) is smaller than an average USB stick, with barely enough space to show what input you’ve selected.

Connections

Toshiba SBX4250

Toshiba SBX4250

It’s unremarkable at the front, then, but thankfully the back of the Toshiba makes up for this. The SBX4250 is one of the better-equipped budget soundbars.

There’s one each of analogue stereo and 3.5mm inputs, and two each of optical digital and HDMI inputs.

There’s also an HDMI output, as well as Bluetooth for wireless music streaming.

Elsewhere, we are glad to see Toshiba has made an effort with a proper chunky remote control handset instead of the typical card-like variety.

The unit is easy to use with a neat layout and large, clearly labelled buttons. We particularly like having the ability to fine tune the treble and bass levels, and the subwoofer volume via the handset.

Toshiba SBX4250

Toshiba SBX4250

Sound

When it comes to sound, the Toshiba SBX4250 is adequate. Much like its design, there’s nothing special but it will get the job done if that job is to sound better than your flatscreen TV.

The sense of scale is pretty good, but we wouldn’t recommend it for anything like a house party.

The sound gets wider still if you trade in a bit of detail and turn on the virtual surround mode – indeed, it’s fairly effective at spreading sound.

Toshiba SBX4250

Toshiba SBX4250

We also like its clarity. Mix in a good level of detail and there is ample texture and definition to effects. Dialogue is sharp, but it feels a little insubstantial and is in need of more body.

It lacks firm support from the bass, which feels flabby and lightweight, struggling to convey the sense of power and the kind of kick we’re looking for.

Move up the frequency range and the sound gets a bit thick and closed in. This isn’t helped by an unruly treble. It’s not over the top, but there is a definite hint of brightness.

Verdict

The Toshiba SBX4250 is a decent enough package, but we don’t find ourselves particularly excited by it.

Despite its good selection of connections, the sound and looks are average at best.

And then there’s the price tag: £200 is a lot of money to spend on something that struggles to thrill. At this price, we would suggest looking elsewhere.

MORE: Best soundbars to buy in 2014

Join us on Facebook

Follow us on Twitter

Find us on Google+

What Hi-Fi?

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.


Read more about how we test