Humax LGB32-DST £420

20th Mar 2008 | 13:19

Humax LGB32-DST

This mid-range LCD TV is undeniably basic, but it has bags of mass market appeal

TechRadar rating:

4 stars

Not very versatile, but it makes a superb set for small-scale hi-def viewing

Like:

Decent value; 2 HDMIs; Good overall picture quality

Dislike:

Dodgy digital tuner

Taking its place in the mid-range of the company's LCD TV line-up, the Humax LGB32-DST is an undeniably lovely-looking 32in model, but its real attraction is its low price.

At just under £500, it's clearly aimed at the mass market - and where's the shame in that?

Homes without flat TVs are now in danger of looking incredibly old fashioned.

We're hoping that's the case, as the LGB32-DST is a great screen. Equipped with a Freeview tuner and nattily-styled in matt black with a silver trim finish, this HDTV will be more than welcome in any living room preparing for the digital switchover.

Ready for High Definition

There's also plenty here for those just as interested in high-definition. Almost all flatscreen TVs that hover around the £500 mark have just the one HDMI input, but the LGB32-DST has two.

It may not seem that much of a crucial addition, but your next DVD player and set-top box will use HDMI instead of Scart for sure. And what about that PS3 or Xbox 360 you want to buy. Both consoles now use HDMI.

The LGB32-DST's resolution of 1366 x 768 pixel resolution make those HDMI inputs worthwhile and earn it the crucial HD Ready badge. It's not all about high-definition, though.

Plenty of useful connections

Also on the LGB32-DST's rear are a couple of RGB Scarts, a set of component video inputs and even a PC input, while a side panel houses stereo audio connections, a composite video input and a S-video port.

That's enough for basic video, but it would have been nice to see one of the set's HDMI inputs here - it would have specially handy for gamers planning on mounting the LGB32-DST on a wall, as constantly unplugging and attaching gear to the rear of a TV can be a nightmare.

Audio is also well addressed with Humax building-in an SRS Surround sound module to its built-in speakers, which are strung-out along under the screen. There's also an output for routing a Dolby Digital soundtrack into a home cinema amplifier at the rear.

It's designed to help you watch digital TV channels through a home cinema system, but it can just as well be used to route audio from everything attached to the LGB32-DST.

Great with Blu-ray

Graphics used in the on-screen menus are somewhat basic and not as intuitive to use as we expected from a Freeview expert like Humax, although tuning-in digital channels is a cinch.

At least the picture quality from our Casino Royale Blu-ray test disc impresses. As well as bags of detail, close-ups of Bond and Eva Green feature terrific skin tones as part of an arsenal of realistic and saturated colours.

Although it's bright and offering above average black levels for the money, shadow detail is lacking. That's to be expected on anything but the most high-end of LCD TVs, however, as is some motion judder on fast-paced camera pans.

Give a Humax a home

The main problem lies with pictures from the digital TV tuner. Some ghosting and MPEG blocking is the fault of the broadcasters, but every problem is shown up on this panel - and to some extent the same problems exist with DVDs.

The Humax LGB32-DST is not as versatile as it should be, but the company's latest 32-incher seems decent value at under £500. Find it for £400 and give it a good home.


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