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12 July 2021

How to buy the best Toshiba TV

Toshiba is better known for making cheap TVs, but it still makes high-end sets, including OLEDs. With budget brands, such as Hisense and TCL, for competition and 4K sets from LG and Samsung getting cheaper, what does Toshiba have to offer?
Martin Pratt

Toshiba has been around for decades, making everything from microwaves to home video phones and, of course, TVs. In 2020 it covers everything from tiny HD Ready sets to advanced OLEDs at lower prices than LG and Samsung. In this guide you'll find out more about its TVs and the technology inside them.

While most of its contemporaries are abandoning HD TVs and TV DVD combis, Toshiba still releases them in large numbers. Many of these are smaller than 32 inches, which makes them a popular choice for people looking for a small TV.

It may be more well known for these TVs, but the models at the top of its range are at the cutting-edge of TV tech. Its 4K TVs use one of the newer HDR formats, and its flagship TV uses organic light-emitting diode (OLED) technology.

If you're unfamiliar and wondering what Toshiba has to offer, keep reading to learn about the technology in Toshiba TVs.

We'll update this page when we know more about Toshiba's 2020 lineup. To find out our verdict on all the models we've tested, go to Toshiba TV reviews.

Toshiba TV technology explained

The technology that makes up Toshiba TVs is a mixture of unfamiliar features and some things that are common to most modern TVs.

Works with Alexa

This phrase is one we're going to see more and more, as voice control becomes a bigger part of many different tech products. Alexa isn't built into Toshiba TVs as it is with an Amazon Echo, but if you have one of Amazon's hubs you can use it to control most Toshiba's TVs. 

You can use your voice for simple commands, such as changing the channel and selecting different inputs, but you can also use it to search through streaming apps for movies and shows. It's similar to what you can do with Bixby on Samsung TVs and ThinQ on LG sets.

Toshiba Smart Portal

All of Toshiba's TVs are smart, from the 24-inch HD Ready models all the way to its 4K OLEDs, and they all use the same Toshiba Smart Portal system to access streaming and catch-up apps.

It includes popular apps, such as Netflix, iPlayer and YouTube. You'll find Freeview Play functionality in the electronic programme guide, too, so you can scroll back through the previous week's TV and watch what you've missed without loading a catch-up app.

Wide Colour Gamut

This is TV brands' fancy way of saying their sets can display loads of colours. It's usually accompanied by a lofty figure of just how many colours the screen can replicate and, in the case of Toshiba, it claims that its TVs can show up to 1,024 shades per colour. 

Generally, the more colours a TV can display the more accurate the colour, but it's not always the case. And as every brand makes these sort of claims, we always take them with a pinch of salt.

Dolby Vision HDR

HDR technology is relatively new to TVs, but there are already five different formats and many more variations and tweaks that manufacturers do in an attempt to give their TVs the edge.

Dolby Vision is one of the newer formats attempting to unseat HDR10 as industry standard. It's more than just a pretender: Dolby Vision improves on HDR10 in a key way by making the contrast adjustment dynamic rather than static. HDR10 has presets for each film which leads to some scenes looking too dark or too bright, obscuring detail. Dolby Vision can react to the demands of each scene to make sure the detail in 4K pictures isn't lost.

HDR content isn't widespread and Dolby Vision compatible video even less so, but many Netflix shows and movies support it, and if it becomes the new industry standard it will become ubiquitous.