Toshiba 22BV501B review

Toshiba's BV501 TV range is the biggest selling in Britain

TODO alt text

Toshiba 22bv501

The main attraction of the 22BV501 is brutally simple: it's cheap. In fact, at £140 for a 22-inch LCD TV, it's incredibly cheap. Which makes it rather surprising to find it packing such 'value added' tricks as a D-Sub PC port so it can double up as a PC monitor, and a USB port for multimedia playback.

There are inevitably some signs of cost-related corner cutting, though. The screen isn't full HD for a start, managing an HD Ready 1366x768 resolution instead. And it only has a Freeview tuner, not a Freeview HD one. And it uses CCFL lighting rather than the 'trendier' edge LED lighting. But these are all forgivable compromises on a budget, second-room TV.

Especially when you consider that in some ways the 22BV501's pictures are great for such a small, cheap TV. Bright images look really punchy and dynamic, with lots of detail and crispness.

There is a problem, though. Namely that dark scenes look a mess thanks to one of the most inconsistent backlights ever. In other words, if you want a TV for anything other than casual daytime TV viewing, the 22BV501 is not for you.

We liked

The TV is decently designed, and manages to include a welcome bit of multimedia support despite its affordability.

Its pictures look superbly bright and colourful too, making it an unusually capable option for a bright room environment.

Its remote control helps the set be impressively easy to use too, but its biggest attraction, of course, is its remarkably cheap price.

We disliked

While bright scenes look very good, dark scenes are really quite poor on account of the screen's multiple and serious backlight consistency problems. Its viewing angle is very limited, too.

The TV isn't full HD and doesn't have a Freeview HD tuner, but these are forgivable issues for the money.

Final Verdict

If you just want a very cheap and very bright TV for casual use, then the 22BV501 is almost uniquely well qualified. Its quality at times, with bright footage, is really quite remarkable for £140.

If, however, you're after a small TV for more serious gaming or movie watching purposes, the 22BV501's quite egregious backlight consistency flaws make it a much more considered purchase, if not one you might be better avoiding altogether.

Follow TechRadar Reviews on Twitter:

Tech Specs

Product TypeLCD TV
Scan Format720p
Standard Refresh Rate50 Hz
Digital TunerDVB-T (MPEG2)
Video Signal StandardHDTV
Number of HDMI Ports1
Product FamilyBV
Brand NameToshiba
Screen Size55.9 cm (22")
Aspect Ratio16:9
Horizontal Viewing Angle160°
Vertical Viewing Angle160°
Analog TunerNTSC
Operating Power Consumption50 W
Standby Power Consumption1 W
Dynamic Contrast Ratio8,000:1
RMS Output Power5 W
Electronic Program GuideYes
Composite VideoYes
Component VideoYes
Media PlayerYes
ColourGlossy Black
Brightness300 cd/m²
Product SeriesBV
Maximum Resolution1366 x 768
FeaturesAuto Program, Auto-off, Teletext, Favorite Channel Selection, Hotel Mode
Product Model22BV501
Product Name22BV501 LCD TV
Manufacturer Part Number22BV501B
Manufacturer Website Address
Marketing Information

The Toshiba 22BV501 series offers the reassurance of Toshiba quality combined with highly affordable prices. It features a gloss black design and offers HD ready resolution and HD connectivity. Integrated Freeview provides access to 50 digital TV channels and 24 radio stations without subscription. PC input allows the BV to double as a PC monitor and USB connectivity also enables you to view video, photos and audio playback directly via the TV.

Package Contents
  • 22BV501 LCD TV
  • Remote Control
Response Time5 ms
Limited Warranty1 Year