Toshiba 32RL958 review

The ultimate trickle-down TV?

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For less than £400 (around AU$615/US$648) our hopes of seeing something genuinely impressive were pretty small, but the Toshiba 32RL958 pulls a rabbit out of the hat; nicely upscaled standard definition pictures are the highlight on a 32-inch TV with living room-friendly features galore.

We liked

It's great to see smart TV apps - especially the BBC iPlayer - on a TV this affordable, while having it all fuelled by Wi-Fi is great news, too. Add Full HD, Freeview HD and a trio of HDMI inputs and the hardware - including the gloss black styling and streamlined remote control - is impressive.

However, what we liked most about the Toshiba 32RL958 was its ability to upscale digital TV programmes, and its skill with digital video files from a USB flash drive. All SD sources look immaculate - and HD doesn't look bad, either.

We disliked

Motion blur is a definite problem with the Toshiba 32RL958. Panning shots in particular are poorly displayed, while the Toshiba 32RL958 has a lack of contrast and black level, too.

We're also not convinced by Toshiba Places, which lacks apps and isn't as polished a user interface as it could be, while it would be nice to see more than AVI video files handled over a network.

Final verdict

As versatile a TV as we've seen, Toshiba's diminutive 32RL958 is one of the best value 32-inch televisions around. Freeview HD channels are handled exquisitely, with the relatively small Edge LED-backlit LCD panel offering clean standard definition and HD images that have plenty of detail.

It's also great to see Wi-Fi and some semblance of smart TV apps - including BBC iPlayer and YouTube - on a TV of this low price. It won't do much of a job in a home cinema, where its size and lack of black level and contrast will soon become apparent, but as a living room TV there are few better options for such little spend.

Also consider

If you're after a more polished-looking - and even unique - design, then the Sony KDL-32HX753 is worth a look, and comes with a slight upgrade in terms of both picture quality and smart TV apps, too - as well as adding 3D.

Something from Samsung is probably worth considering too - try the 32ES6300, which adds 3D, too - as does the Panasonic TX-L32E5B. The latter has a wider viewing angle, a better smart TV platform and supports lossless FLAC music files over a network, but lacks Wi-Fi.

Tech Specs

Product TypeLED-LCD TV
Scan Format1080p
Standard Refresh Rate50 Hz
Digital TunerDVB-T (MPEG4), DVB-C (MPEG4)
Video Signal StandardHDTV 1080p
Number of HDMI Ports3
Product FamilyRL958
EU Energy LabelA+
Smart TVYes
Brand NameToshiba
Screen Size81.3 cm (32")
Aspect Ratio16:9
Horizontal Viewing Angle178°
Vertical Viewing Angle178°
Green CompliantYes
Green Compliance Certificate/AuthorityCEC
Wireless LANYes
Ethernet TechnologyEthernet
Weight with Stand (Approximate)9.50 kg
Backlight TechnologyLED
VESA Mount Standard200 x 200
Operating Power Consumption78 W
Standby Power Consumption300 mW
Dynamic Contrast Ratio1,000,000:1
RMS Output Power20 W
Electronic Program GuideYes
DLNA CertifiedYes
Digital Audio OutputYes
Height with Stand506 mm
Width with Stand735 mm
Depth with Stand206 mm
Composite VideoYes
Component VideoYes
Network (RJ-45)Yes
PC StreamingYes
Internet AccessYes
Media PlayerYes
Motion Interpolation Technology100 Active Motion Rate
Brightness400 cd/m²
Comb Filter3D Y/C
Sound SystemDolby Digital Plus
Product SeriesRL958
Maximum Resolution1920 x 1080
FeaturesTeletext, Auto Program, PVR (Personal Video Recorder), Web Browser, Auto-off, Hotel Mode, Ambient Lighting, Digital Noise Reduction
Product Model32RL958
Product Name32" Smart LED TV
Manufacturer Part Number32RL958B
Manufacturer Website Address
Marketing Information

The 32" RL958 Smart TV series brings more quality content and connectivity to your home. Delivering stunning Full HD 1080p image quality the RL series features built-in Freeview HD, internet content and catch-up TV services including YouTube, BBC iPlayer and Facebook that are easily accessed thanks to built-in WIFI.

You can also get access to a range of other online content from Acetrax movies, Twitter, Livesport.TV and more through the Toshiba Places internet portal accessed via your TV at the touch of a button. The added convenience of smartphone & tablet remote control operation, USB Recording and Intel WiDi compatibility is also included.

Package Contents
  • 32" Smart LED TV
  • Remote Control
Response Time16 ms
Limited Warranty1 Year