Bang and Olufsen BeoVision 7-40 review

Simplicity and ease of use go right to the heart of the Bang & Olufsen BeoVision 7-40 concept, yet we weren't totally convinced by the new touchscreen remote.

A fairly weighty - in a good way - sphere with a small touchscreen LCD module poking out the top, the Beo6 remote control replaces the long, slender hard-button Beo4. The latter remains an option, and is worth considering (especially if you intend to use the BeoVision 7-40 as a single, separate component), since the Beo6 can take some time to get used to.

Not that it's poorly thought out. Displaying channel icons for favourite channels and shortcuts to the main menus and most used functions, the Beo6 is an aesthetic triumph.

Bang and Olufsen BeoVision 7-40 review

It's also able to master other appliances in a smart home, although the Beolink app for Android smartphones or iPhones can do the same.

Those with cinema control systems from the likes of AMX or Crestron can easily integrate the Bang & Olufsen BeoVision 7-40, with icons possible on that touchscreen for controlling blinds, curtains, lighting dimmers and suchlike.

It works particularly well in a cinema-style blackout, since it softly illuminates when touched, dulling after a few seconds of inactivity. Our only real complaint about the Beo6 is that while holding it in your palm, physically operating the hard button array and the touchscreen icons can be a bit of a thumb-stretch.

Sound

Our setup featured a BeoLab 7-4 centre speaker column with four 700W BeoLab 9s surrounding, and a BeoLab 2 subwoofer (£2,400) in close attendance.

Bang and Olufsen BeoVision 7-40 review

Speaker distances can be tweaked, and specific products selected in the user interface, although an installer is required to set up the adaptive sound tech (AST) feature, which effectively moves the sweet spot to wherever you intend to sit (if off-centre).

Well balanced, powerful and with awesome treble detail, the surround sound is spot-on, while the subwoofer plays a huge part.

It would be cruel to compare this awesomely powerful array with a flatscreen TV's built-in speakers, but you can certainly get a reference-level audio performance from a spec'd-up Bang & Olufsen BeoVision 7-40.

Value

It's almost impossible to judge a TV costing £7,600-£10,950 as anything other than overpriced, but do bear in mind that Bang & Olufsen's Danish factory doesn't exactly churn out TVs - we're talking no more than double-figures each day, to serve the entire planet.

Bang and Olufsen BeoVision 7-40 review

That said, the inclusion of a built-in 3D Blu-ray player isn't a money-spinner, since it's increasingly difficult to find a 2D-only deck.

As well as near-exclusivity and various customised colour and audio options, you're paying for extras such as that motorised stand, touchscreen remote and even its less-is-more approach to the TV's operation.

It also boasts a quite superb build quality that's engineered to a much higher standard than mainstream TV brands - although in terms of who this TV is aimed at, the BeoVision 7-40 isn't really going up against a TV from Toshiba, Sony or Samsung, but more likely holidays, house extensions and investments.