Despite aggressive LCD pricing from the big 'AV guns' Goodmans has still managed to deliver a 20in LCD screen for a cool £100 less than any of its current 20in rivals.It's available exclusively from Comet.
Perhaps one way in which Goodmans has been able to make this screen so affordable is by not bothering to employ any designers. The LD2001 is the blandest of plasticky, silver squares, with not even the vaguest attempt at any fashionable flourish.
Did we say 'square'? Yes,we did. The LD2001 is a 4:3-ratio model, which isn't automatically a bad thing as many people only use a second TV for watching ordinary tuner broadcasts, which are still broadcast predominantly in the 4:3 ratio. But if you were thinking of attaching a DVD player, the non-widescreen ratio may be a problem - especially as there's no 16:9 mode for viewing anamorphic widescreen sources.
The LD2001 is reasonably pleasing on the connection front. Its key claim to fame is its PC input, giving it a 'dual purpose' aspect that makes the TV even better value. Elsewhere, all the key video bases are covered.
Features are most notable by their absence.We've already mentioned that there's not even a widescreen mode, so it shouldn't surprise you too much to hear that there's really nothing else beyond the fundamental basics either.
Starting with its picture, there are more good points than we might have expected from the cheapest 20in LCD TV yet.For starters, the TV handles motion reasonably effectively,with moving objects looking decently clean and sharp. This is particularly surprising given how badly Goodmans'26in widescreen LCD TV struggles with motion smearing.
We were also pleasantly surprised by the LD2001's contrast performance.While far from worldbeating, its levels of black are nonetheless comfortably in advance of those seen on many budget rivals. The LD2001 also outguns many budget rivals with the brightness and richness of its colours.
Naturally,not everything is sweetness and light.Our biggest concern is the amount of noise in the picture.Even RGB feeds look 'alive',with dot crawl galore over any mid-to-dark hues - and there's no noise reduction option to combat it.
Also,although reasonably untroubled by LCD's common smearing problem,the LD2001's image doesn't look especially sharp.And finally,although they're vibrant,colours aren't always very natural, with skin tones in particular looking a bit ripe.
The LD2001's sound is also flawed. Although fine at low volumes, during action scenes or at louder levels,the sound starts to distort in a quite distracting way.
In the end it's this potential of the LD2001 to suddenly distract the viewer that proves its downfall, despite its, at times, very likeable picture. We might have been able to put up with one of these intermittent nasties, but with both picture noise and sound distortion problems, the balance is tipped against it.