Toshiba

Sound

Audio is very average indeed. There's hardly any bass, the mid-range is thin and cramped and trebles tend to sound muffled and indistinct.

As usual, you can argue that the Toshiba 32DB833's audio performance is just about adequate for watching normal TV programmes, but it doesn't do film soundtracks any favours at all, which has to count as a bit of an issue when you're talking about a TV – even a cheap one – with a built-in Blu-ray player.

Value

This is undoubtedly the Toshiba 32DB833's strongest suit. For while this combi TV isn't going to win any awards for its AV standards, its performance isn't quite as unrefined as its price would lead you to expect. Especially when you factor in the multimedia playback options offered by its USB port and disc player.

In other words, it's a compelling proposition for a second room, if not perhaps for a main TV.

Ease of use

Combi products with poorly designed operating systems can be a pain to control, but the Toshiba 32DB833 does a great job of letting you handle both the Blu-ray deck and the screen without confusion.

This process starts with the remote control, which is large, well designed and surprisingly classy considering the aggressive pricing of the TV it accompanies.

The main disc navigation tools are given their own space in the lower half of the remote, below the large, spaciously laid out cursor control keys, while even quite secondary Blu-ray control options such as Pop-Up Menu and Top Menu are given their own buttons and labelled in blue, rather than being forced to share a button with a function related to the screen side of things.

The on-screen menus aren't particularly attractive, but their organisation is straightforward, and the amount of features they contain is manageable. Kudos is due, in particular, to the electronic programme guide. This appears over the programme you were watching rather than hiding the picture entirely, and presents more information, with greater clarity than most guides, and takes up no space with adverts.

One final welcome touch finds the Blu-ray slot accepting discs quite happily, even when you haven't got the relevant input selected. The TV automatically switches to Blu-ray playback once a disc is detected, too.

This might all sound like common sense, but you'd be surprised how many DVD/TV combis turn getting a disc to enter their slots into a wrestling match.