The C42T71DVB-3D is a fascinating television, albeit not always for the right reasons. The set's lack of a Freeview HD tuner will cause a good number of discerning users to pass on by without further ado, and its CCFL backlight is a style and technology faux pas. The last thing you need when you buy your next TV is for it to look like a time traveler from the late noughties.
On the plus side, the screen's Passive 3D implementation is easy on the pocket when it comes to glasses, and if you're looking to 3D primarily as kids entertainment, then its technical shortcomings are unlikely to prove problematic.
The set's strongest feature though is its USB media player and PVR recording feature. The latter actually outperforms similar functionality from better known brands, and will certainly get the thumbs up from those who like to archive TV shows onto NAS devices.
We liked the 3D performance from Blu-ray, the low cost 3D glasses, the strong multimedia file playback from USB and the DRM-free USB PVR recordings.
We disliked the bulky CCFL backlight, the lack of Freeview HD tuner, the limited EPG, the average picture performance, the poor motion resolution, the ordinary sound and the chunky remote.
Not quite the 3D bargain it might first appear to be, the C42T71DVB-3D is hampered by its retro standard definition DVB tuner and outmoded design - and the price tag just isn't competitive enough to compensate.
However, its Passive 3D implementation is a welcome alternative to high-cost Active Shutter models and the integrated USB media reader and PVR recording functions are a cut above.
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