Hitachi 15LD2400 £230
22nd Feb 2007 | 00:00
The company's retains its reputation for quality and value
Hitachi has forged a decent (though not spotless) reputation as a maker of great value LCD TVs. Externally, at least, this trend seems to continue with the 15LD2400, which despite its lowly price point seems fairly domesticated.
The finish is plasticky and the shape is 4:3, not widescreen, but the neatly rounded corners and chunky bezel make it an attractive addition to a bedroom or study.
It's also got all the important connections, including an RGB Scart, an S-video input, a composite video input, stereo audio inputs, and a D-Sub jack for PC hookup.
The native resolution of 1024 x 768 is pleasingly high, but there's nothing earth-shattering about the 500:1 claimed contrast ratio and the 420cd/m2 brightness output is actually unusually low.
The 15LD2400's operating system is likeable, however. The remote control is drab, but spaciously laid out, and the onscreen menus are readable and clear. There aren't many features other than a widescreen mode and an unexpected skin tone corrector. But this is to be expected for £230.
The set has a credible stab at producing true black; only suffering slightly from LCD's commonplace greyness over dark areas. This immediately gives scenes a greater sense of dynamism and scale.
It also produces a really wide and vibrant colour palette, which delivers pleasingly natural tones, such as skin tones during dark scenes.
Also acceptable for a budget TV is its motion handling. There's some sign of smearing over fast motion, but it's never really distracting.
Not surprisingly, there are signs of the 15LD2400's budget nature. The picture isn't especially crisp, with a slight lack of fine detail and gently soft edges. And, although dark parts of the picture do look black, they also tend to look rather empty and hollow.
Sonically, the 15LD2400 is okay. A general lack of power and frequency range slightly distorts sounds during any sort of action scene, but 'normal' day-to-day TV fodder is reasonably clear and goes easy on the ear.