Sony KDL-32EX524 review

Don't let the size or price fool you – this TV is packed with clever features and delivers decent pictures

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Sony kdl 32ex524

It may not set a new picture benchmark for 32-inch LED TVs, but the KDL-32EX524's performance is still impressive for a £550 set. There are some obvious flaws, but on the whole your hi- and standard-def sources are in good hands.

Images from the built-in Freeview HD tuner look crisp and precise, showing precious few signs of stepping along edges, pixellation or block noise. Detail shines through from every inch of the screen, whether you're ogling the textured green grass of Wimbledon's Centre Court or the suburban London surroundings of Lead Balloon. It's a great advert for hi-def, even on a screen of this size, and shows that the new X-Reality chip is no slouch when it comes to sharpening up detail and removing noise.

Switching over to a Blu-ray disc – in this case Children of Men – the KDL-32EX524 continues its good work with more scintillating detail and deep, natural colours. However, the movie's gloomy settings and subject matter means dark scenes are frequent, and here we find the KDL-32EX524 slightly struggling – instead of deep, inky blacks you get a sort of misty grey/blue and the backlight seems uneven, with pooling down the left and right sides.

We also ran Samsung's HD Reference Software evaluation disc through the KDL-32EX524 and with the black level test patterns found it hard to define the outlines of black objects set against black backgrounds, and although contrast is good, it lacks the punch and breadth of a good plasma, or the best full LED sets. You can get some joy playing around with the Black Corrector and Advanced Contrast Enhancer, but it's never fully rectified and doesn't really improve the detail within blacks. Brighter Blu-rays like Wall-E or Legends of the Guardians look much better though.

The other major flaw with the TV's picture is motion blur. It's highlighted most clearly on our evaluation disc's Motion test patterns, showing fast camera pans over the front of a building and a map. The image is beset by smearing, which makes text on the map difficult to read, plus the image judders uncomfortably.

During movies this blur interferes with the clarity of fast-moving scenes. With no frame insertion technology to iron this sort of stuff out it's fairly inevitable, but might encourage some to fork out more for a 100Hz sets from the Sony 724 series.

Back to the positives, and Sony makes good its promise of improving web video. We watched zombie film Day of the Dead (1985) on BBC iPlayer and were enormously impressed by the lack of artefacts and buffering delays with this 26-year-old movie. Horrible Histories also looked superb: it was just like watching an SD BBC One broadcast on Freeview.

Tech Specs

Product TypeLED-LCD TV
Scan Format1080p
Standard Refresh Rate50 Hz
Digital TunerDVB-C (MPEG4), DVB-T (MPEG4)
Video Signal StandardHDTV 1080p
Number of HDMI Ports4
Number of SCART Interfaces1
Product FamilyBRAVIA EX524
Brand NameSony
Screen Size81.3 cm (32")
Aspect Ratio16:9
EthernetYes
Ethernet TechnologyEthernet
USBYes
HDMIYes
Weight with Stand (Approximate)10.20 kg
Backlight TechnologyEdge LED
Operating Power Consumption88 W
Standby Power Consumption300 mW
RMS Output Power20 W
Electronic Program GuideYes
DLNA CertifiedYes
VGAYes
HeadphoneYes
Digital Audio OutputYes
Height with Stand510 mm
Width with Stand755 mm
Depth with Stand216 mm
CI+Yes
Composite VideoYes
Component VideoYes
SCARTYes
PC StreamingYes
Internet AccessYes
Media PlayerYes
Height480 mm
Width755 mm
Depth42 mm
ColourBlack
Comb Filter3D Y/C
Sound SystemDolby Digital Plus, Dolby Pulse, Surround Sound
Product SeriesEX524
Maximum Resolution1920 x 1080
FeaturesWeb Browser, Sleep Timer, Picture in Picture, Picture and Picture (PAP), Favorite Channel Selection
ManufacturerSony Corporation
Product ModelKDL-32EX524
Product NameBRAVIA KDL-32EX524 LED-LCD TV
Product LineBRAVIA
Manufacturer Part NumberKDL32EX524BU
Manufacturer Website Addresshttp://www.sony.co.uk
Marketing Information

See big picture detail on a slim screen
Add style to the room with a slim Edge LED screen. Enjoy TV and films in Full HD detail and true-to-life colour. Be ready for the best of the web from the comfort of your sofa. Benefit from everything LED and Internet TV has to offer.

Package Contents
  • BRAVIA KDL-32EX524 LED-LCD TV
  • Remote Control
  • 2 x 'AAA' Batteries
  • AC Power Cable
SpeakersYes
Limited Warranty5 Year
Weight (Approximate)7.70 kg