When HD-ready flatscreens first appeared on the market they were prohibitively pricey, but now their cost has fallen to the level of reasonable. By asking for £750 for the V32EMRO, Evesham is looking to push HD-ready prices even further down. Evesham doesn't call the 32-inch V32EMRO a television: it's an LCD Multi-media Display.
This could mean one of two things: Evesham's marketing department doesn't think TV is sexy, or the company wants to pull down customers expectations, because if this was a TV it would have to meet a certain level of performance. Unfortunately for Evesham, this spin doesn't hide the fact that this LCD is lacking. For a start the V32EMRO is ugly, reminiscent of the low-point of 1980s home electronics.
The connections roster gave us hope, but then we saw where the sole HDMI is positioned - round the back, high up the left hand side, almost flush against the case. This makes any insulated HDMI cable a tight fit when wall-mounting. The socket in our test model was also poorly cut out. Instead of sliding the HDMI in with a firm push, ours required jiggling and coaxing to get it in. Get a HDMI DVD player along with a HDTV receiver, and swapping cables won't be irritating, but enraging.
Things didn't get much better when we turned the V32EMRO on. This LCD delivered what we expected: not much. Running Nightwatch through an upsampling DVD player gave dynamic and striking pictures with a fair amount of detail. So long as nothing moved. As soon as the camera panned or a character shifted in the frame the picture began jerking.
The standard-definition performance was extremely poor, with high levels of grain, dull colours, and a grey sheen to blacks that absorbed detail in shadows. Squinting during Nightwatch wasn't fun. There is an adjustable backlight, but this didn't help things. The set's sound performance was reasonable - the speakers have a decent amount of power behind them - but they didn't do much for the movie's soundtrack. For watching TV, they'd be adequate.
While the Evesham isn't a complete disappointment, it doesn't excite and its performance doesn't make for good value for money. Those wanting a low-cost HD panel should put aside an extra £150 and get the JVC LT-32DR7 or the Acer AT3205-DTV.