LED, LCD and plasma TV: Compare features & prices Sharp LC-32SH130K review http://www.which.co.uk/technology/tv-and-dvd/reviews/led--lcd-and-plasma-tv/sharp-lc-32sh130k/review/
The Sharp LC-32SH130K is another aggressively-priced 32-inch TV that keeps its price tag low by avoiding features like LED-backlighting, a Freeview HD tuner and Full-HD resolution. However, this HD-ready Sharp has a few surprises. Not only is this 32-inch LCD TV more stylish than some of its rivals, it can also moonlight as a PVR with an external hard disk drive plugged in.
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Type of TV
LCD and LED TVs differ only in the way the screen is illuminated. A handful of backlight lamps light-up a traditional LCD display, on 'LED TVs' the lamps have been replaced by hundreds of smaller LEDs (light emitting diodes). LEDs are also more energy efficient than traditional bulbs. Plasma TVs do not have backlights but illuminated by the brightness of individual gas cells.
The type of built-in digital tuner. Dual HD tuners have both Freeview HD and Freesat HD - but the tuners operate seperately, not in conjunction. So for instance, you can't watch one channel on Freesat and record another on Freeview.
The TV is capable of displaying 3D broadcasts from Sky or Virgin and 3D Blu-ray movies. 3D glasses are sometimes sold separately
Screen size (inches)
This is the size of the screen in inches, measured diagonally across.
HD ready 1080p
All the full-size TVs we review are 'HD-ready' and suitable for watching 1080i HDTV broadcasts via Sky, Virgin or Freesat. The 'HD-ready 1080p' logo means the TV has a 1,080 line screen resolution, and can process a 1080p/24 signal used on Blu-ray DVD movies - although this is not a guarantee of the best HD picture. Older 'HD-ready' sets will switch to a 1080i picture when used with high-definition DVD, but are more likely to suffer from a slight picture judder on panning shots.
Native resolution (pixels)
The number of pixels the TV can display (horizontal x vertical)
Allows you to access a selection of internet 'apps' - micro sites of web content such as video catch-up and movie download services. Some internet TVs allow full web browsing.
Allows you to plug a HDD drive into the USB port to pause, rewind and record live TV. Some models feature a built-in PVR.
Scart sockets are the standard way to connect recording devices, DVD players, and set-top boxes. RGB is the highest quality video signal that can be carried on a Scart and is your best bet for a good picture.
Socket for connecting to high-definition equipment, such as Blu-ray player or Sky HD box. Carries HD video and multi-channel audio.
HDMI widescreen switching
We check to see whether widescreen switching works in standard definition modes with a DVD player or Sky box. A 4:3 picture should automatically be detected and displayed with black bands on either side, not stretched to fill the screen.
Consumer Electronics Control (CEC) allows you to control other bits of CEC enabled equipment, connected together by HDMI, via just one remote control. We test to see if it works with at least one other brand of Blu-ray player. Maunufacturers sometimes imply that their TVs will only work with similarly branded equipment. This is occassionally true for advanced functions but more often than not basic and advanced functions basic work between brands.
Some TVs can be connected to your PC and double as computer monitors. This can be via either a traditional analogue VGA input or a digital connection - usually an HDMI input configured to support PC screen resolutions.
Independent picture settings
Allows you to set and save different picture settings for different inputs (for instance Scart and HDMI) on your TV. Useful if you've fine tuned your picture to different settings, for watching DVDs or a Sky HD box, for example.
Means you can plug in your digital camera and view photos on the big screen (they tend to look great on high resolution displays). Many USB ports support digital music and camcorder playback.
SD card slot
Means you can view photos from various digital camera memory cards on the big screen. High resolution digital photos viewed this way usually look very good.
Digital picture, audio and video files are available in a variety of different formats. The more formats the USB or SD card slot supports the better.
This allows connection to a local home server (a computer network in your house) or the internet
Red and white phono sockets can carry stereo sound to a Hi-Fi. If there are no dedicated phono sockets a Scart socket with a phono adaptor is an alternative. Connecting via the headphone socket is an option too, but won't be Hi-Fi quality.
These outputs let you hook up your TV to an external surround sound system. There are two types - Coaxial (wire) and Optical (fibre optic) so make sure your home cinema's digital connection matches your TV. Both can carry stereo signals too.
Audio sources routed through digital outputs
Digital optical and coaxial outputs are only really useful if they route digital audio surround-sound from all sources (DVD player, Sky box etc). Surround-sound is virtually non-existant on standard Freeview, so models that only route audio from a non-HD digital tuner are of limited use (except for listening to stereo).
ARC (Audio Return Channel) support is needed to connect to a surround decoder via HDMI. It's easy to spot - the HDMI input will be labelled.
Socket for plugging in headphones.
Headphone volume control
The most versatile headphone outputs allow you to control headphone volume independently from the main speakers. Useful if you're hard of hearing.
This means the TV can decode an audio description signal. AD is an additional narration for visually-impaired people that describes significant visual information, such as body language and scenery.
Auto volume limiter
Can help to limit the volume to a constant level inbetween programmes. Sound levels can rise during adverts.
Boosts dialogue over background noise and music
Access to online app store letting you download more apps - micro sites showcasing some of the best bits of the web.
Smart TVs come with a number of pr-loaded apps. Manufacturers can add to these at any time - this is the number at the time of testing
Allows you to surf the world wide web via your TV
This is important if you want to view video on web pages
Web content available at time of testing. Most tvs don't let you browse the internet but instead provide access to applications and specific bits of content, such as YouTube and Facebook
Based on using our viewing panel's ideal picture settings. Settings are aimed at getting the best picture, but typically mean it uses less energy too. An energy efficient 40-inch LED should use around 60-70 watts. Larger 42-inch plasma TVs will use more than twice that amount of energy.
Eco mode (Watts)
Energy consumed with energy saving picture setting activated (typically involves dimming the backlight).
During standby after 2 hours and/or using ECO mode. Ideally this should be below 2 watts to meet the Energy Saving Trust recommendation
Mechanical 'hard off' buttons turn the TV off completely. Electronic 'soft off' buttons need some power to switch the set back on.
Annual running cost (nearest £).
Based on TV switched on for 5 hours a day and left in standby for the rest of the day. Electricity priced at 14.5p per k/w.
Ideal brightness setting as used by our expert viewing panel in a dimly-lit room. Settings may vary slightly from sample to sample.
Ideal contrast setting as used by our expert viewing panel in a dimly-lit room. Settings may vary slightly from sample to sample.
Ideal colour setting as used by our expert viewing panel in a dimly-lit room. Settings may vary slightly from sample to sample.
Ideal picture profile setting as used by our expert viewing panel in a dimly-lit room. Settings may vary slightly from sample to sample.
Backlightsetting as used by our expert viewing panel in a dimly-lit room. Settings may vary slightly from sample to sample.
Other settings as used by our expert viewing panel in a dimly-lit room. Settings may vary slightly from sample to sample.