Toshiba 37ul863b

For a set firmly in the middle of Toshiba's impressively huge arsenal, the 37UL863B has more than enough core features to please most living rooms.

The Freeview HD tuner on board here and, surprisingly, the presence of a Freesat HD tuner, too, makes this an ideal screen for those who've yet to jump aboard the free-to-air HDTV bandwagon.

Arguably this also makes it an over specc'ed and unnecessarily expensive choice for those with existing subscription TV packages or PVRs with multiple DVB-T2 tuners. Though the 37UL863B is hardly hampered by an extortionate price tag, it's £100 dearer than similarly-sized HD tuner-less choices.

It's actually got its own recordings options, albeit limited. A USB slot on its side can be used either for accepting USB sticks with files on, or for attaching to a USB HDD for making recordings – the choice is yours, but you must make that choice (there's a prompt when the TV is switched on for the first time).

The TV automatically formats a connected HDD, which henceforth can only be used for playback of material on the TV itself; it can't be attached to a PC or Mac to export files, or indeed without being reformatted and all data deleted. So anyone thinking of archiving recordings, think again.

Toshiba Places, the brand's attempt to redress the balance after a pretty disappointing effort at smart TV in 2010, still isn't as impressive as rival attempts from the likes of Sony and Samsung.

It's divided into four sections and each app is laid-out on what looks like a carousel. It's not – in Video Place if you scroll from the icon for BBC iPlayer, past YouTube and on through Viewster, Box Office 365, Dailymotion, Woomi, Cartoon Network and HiT Enertainment, you're then in a cul-de-sac and must manually scroll back.

The second section of Places, Music Place, contains just Aureo personal radio, while the third section, News Place has only Meteonews. Finally to Social Place, which comprises an links to personalised content on Flickr, as well as Dailymotion. Yeah, whatever …