Despite a rather up and down performance through 2011, Sony looks like it could be about to finish the year on a high. For rolling into town today is the brand's KDL-46HX923.

This 46-inch LCD set sits at the very top of Sony's range this year, a position that's mostly defined by the fact that it - along with its 55-inch 55HX923 sibling - is the only Sony set that uses direct LED lighting with local dimming rather than edge LED or CCFL lighting.

Sony's previous direct LED sets have generally been very impressive, so there's every reason to hope that this trend will continue with the 46HX923.

Naturally the 46HX923's appeal doesn't end with its direct LED lighting, though. The set also carries a full list of all Sony's key features this year, including active 3D playback, solid multimedia playback support, the 'Pro' version of Sony's new X-Reality picture processing suite, and access to Sony's mostly excellent Bravia Internet Video online service.

As you would expect, the 46HX923's flagship status means that it carries a fairly premium price tag: around £1650. If this is out of your reach but you fancy a Sony TV, then one step down in the range you get to the HX823 series, which carries a similar feature count to the 46HX923 but uses edge LED lighting instead of the all-important direct LED lighting system.

If you're a lucky member of the money's no object brigade, though, it's time to find out if the 46HX923 really is worthy of such a substantial wedge of your hard-earned cash.