The DML-4132WLD has pulled off the unusual feat of being not only cheap but also having an instantly intriguing selling point. DMTech has managed to integrate a DVD player in this 32in set, ruling out the need to spend an extra hundred quid or so and eliminating cables entirely.
The aesthetics revolve around the 'black-frame-and-silver-surround' idea and the overall effect is stylish, in a Pioneer-lite kind of way, without breaking any new ground. Before you get to admire your latest talking point, however, you have to lug it into position and lordy, is this thing heavy.
The extra pounds presumably belong to the DVD player and the additional electronics make it several degrees bulkier than your average 32-incher, but that should only worry raging depth-fascists.
The remote, meanwhile, is a nasty little number festooned with tiny, poorly arranged and occasionally obscurely labelled buttons, but we'll cut it a little slack as it has to work the disc deck as well as the telly.
Operation is straightforward and involves a surprisingly snazzy graphical user interface that contains some fairly predictable AV pre-sets and nothing in the way of advanced digital picture processing options.
We weren't quite sure what to expect from this novel machine, and the results ranged from the unexpectedly good to the disappointingly shabby. With regard to the former, detail is very good,contrast is reasonable and colours, with the right source material, are at least bold.
As you'd expect, it depends largely on the source material. Broadcast pictures look pretty ropey, with a conspicuous softness, horrendously jerky movement and a haphazard colour palette.
The built-in deck, meanwhile, is rather more serviceable, but, sadly, doesn't compare at all well to a separate deck. Detail is still good, but colours are suddenly too lurid and forced, movement is still jittery and it's hard to get the right balance between brightness and contrast.
It's watchable enough, after some patient tweaking, but the performance isn't quite good enough to sell us the idea of the integrated disc player.
High def, lastly, looks pretty sterling. All formats are accepted and the general presentation is comparable to plenty of much pricier screens.
Audio is par for the course for a set of this size, but we'd recommend utilising the digital outputs to give DVD soundtracks the oomph they deserve.
The overall success of the DML- 4123WD is tricky to assess. It's competent, versatile and spectacularly cheap, but there's still a distinct whiff of gimmickry about it. After all, anyone prepared to spend hundreds of pounds on a telly probably isn't going to balk at going the extra fraction of a mile for a standalone DVD deck and we suspect the results would probably be more satisfying. Still, it's a neat affordable combo that should stand unfussy buyers on a budget in pretty good stead for a while yet.